Beating a Dead Horse. SUBS

Vandersteen, Rel or whatever. Has anyone actually ever a/b the 2 subs side by side. Not talking the vandy 2w which has a 12in passive. I'm talking about the vandy 2wq which only has 3 8inch subs and also the rel storm III with the 10in.. I don't care about ht sound, just music. Must be quick/fast, accurate, detailed, not muddy or still vibrating after the fact. I do have Martin speakers and would be adding 2 subs for music. I've listened to the rel storm III @ tweeter and it sucked, but I know for a fact they did not have it hooked up correctly. Though the salesman mentioned all the great features, he had no idea how to use them; neither did I. I'm sure set up properly it would be great. But I have to think 3-8in subs must be quicker than a 10in sub, but I could be wrong. If you have auditioned these side by side I would like to know what the differences are(also did you notice if they were hooked up correctly and broken in). This thread came after reading the recent thread on vandy verses rel.. I noticed one agoner upgrade from the 2w to the 2wq and after reading extensively on the vandy subs, I can see why; he wanted music over ht. Another agoner had both the rel storm III and the q201, he stated he used the storm III for ht and the q201 for music. Why would you not use the III for music???, as it is suppose to be better than the q201. Another agoner mentioned the bag end sub as beating the both the rel and vandy in music, I don't know much about bag but isn't that an 18in sub and how could a 18 be more musical than a 10 or 8in sub. Excuse my ignorance but I do not know much about subs and everything I thought I learned about them is the smaller the sub, the more musical it would be. Sorry to continue the thread on subs, but no one ever mentions if they auditioned the 2 side/side, they just say that the rel, aerial, vandy, etc.... is the best they ever heard. Looking for help here..
Thanx Pete
Hi Pete, Martin is going to make a sub. you may want to wait and see how that one sounds. I don't know any details on it though. Sorry.
ML is making a unit with 3 active drivers. I believe they are 10inch (they may be 8 inch). Given MLs commitment to music and integration (bass to panels), this will likely be the right sub for your speakers. It's due out in fall. I believe it called the "descent".
The Bag End Infrasub 18 is very nice, especially x2 with music. I think it blows the Vandersteens away. The only thing I have heard that is better is the Aerial SW-12. The biggest problem with subwoofers is being able to get them placed properly and adjusted to the right levels. I have not personally heard the REL Subs, but others have told me they are on par with the Bag End. The problem with Bag End is the size of the box. I would have went with 2, but my wife said the furniture had to stay in the room also (the sub liked to be in places where there is currently furniture. The Ariel is a much smaller box that would sqeeze into areas that the Bag End would not. Vandersteens were just not enough sub for me.
Hi Pete. Which ML's do you have? If they CLS's, not hybrids, look for a pair of Kinergetics SW800 subs towers. Even they guys at ML will tell you that this is the sub system that best integrates with the CLS.

It should, as it (including the crossover) was designed by a CLS owner (Tony Di Chiro) specifically for the CLS's. Hell, they are even the exact same height as the CLS. Like the CLS the SW800's are line sources (to 200 cycles). The results with these subs are nothing short of amazing. However, they are no longer in production and can be hard to come by. But... well worth the effort. After trying other subs I decided to just wait it out and by sheer luck and good timing wound up with Gayle Sander's pair that were just sitting around at ML. Also, after posting a "wanted" ad on Audiogon, I did get a couple of responses. You may try to do the same.

I've listened to Vandy's & REL's in my system and while both are excellent subs they do not work well with full range ML's. If you have hybrids, you are your own as I've had no experience with these and subs. Good luck.
They are different animals. The 2W uses a crossover between the preamp and power amp. The sub replaces your main speakers below the cutoff point. The REL supplements the main speakers, filling in the bottom below you mains. It can be adjusted in 2Hz increments. I went with the REL because I loved the sound of my mains and did not want to change the sound of the system, just enhance its one slight weak point.
Abstract, do you know what the price will be on the sub? Thanks.
When I spoke to a Martin rep., he said somewhere between $2,000 to $3,000. This was about 2mos ago.
Thanks Pcc, I was planning on trying to move to the Ascents from the Aerius I have but now wonder if the Sub would be a better move?
No money, I have the aerius i's now and looking for a sub to intergrate seamless with them. Eventually the aerius will go to the back of for ht and I'll be looking to upgrade to the cls2z for the mains. Just hate to spend the hard earned $$$ on a sub that won't keep up with the martins.
I hear you there. I had a Mirage sub at one time. I forget what model ( it was around $800 retail ) it just would not keep up. I have wondered how some higher priced units would perform. The best thing locally around here seems to be the Vandersteen stuff, and it is pretty reasonable price wise. Of course then I would have to head down the road of running an I.C. equal to the others in the system which would cost as much as the sub. So then I am back at the = or close to the investment that would get me the Ascents. There is the dilemma. I think with the Ascents I might get as much base as I need for my room, I would much prefer not to overload the base plus the fuller sound of the larger panels.
As far as cost effective solutions: I'm using a Genesis Servo 12. It does keep up with ML, but it does not have the bass extension I would like. While it's rated to go down to 20 Hz, it begins to roll off around 25-28 Hz (but it is flat to that point). At 20 Hz it's more than 6 db down. It was very inexpensive, so I really can't complain, but I would like something that goes lower in the future.
Absolute Sound (for what it is worth) rated the Rel Strata and the Hsu TN1220HO (surprise) as the best subs for disappearing and seamless integration. I have experience with the Hsu's and they can be very very good if the crossover point is 50 hz or lower and you take care to dial them in. The Rel and Vandersteen are better choices for a higher crossover point but will not crumble the foundation nor give you the realistic LF hall ambience if you need it. On the Hsu's though, you have to be able to tolerate sub par asthetics as compared to the furniture grade Vandersteens and Rel. This is not a minor point.
PCC--my Ascents arrive on Tuesday next week...the Aerius' go to the HT set up (well, now I need the cinema center and scripts for the rear channels--darn the luck). I'll let you know how the Ascents sound.