REL IMHO makes a much better sub. The Sunfire subs are great for HT, but for two channel the RELs are much better. I have had the Sunfire True Signature and the REL Storm III. The REL was a big step up from the Sunfire.
Apples and oranges, again. Well, not really, but they are quite different. This is typical, like I've said before. Most, haven't had the listening experience with the Architectural series, and assume it's the same as the "True" line. It's not. The Sunfire True Signature is not the same (at all) as the Architectural. One is HT and one is specifically designed as a two channel music baby. The Architectural is tighter, faster, and more musical than the True. It's amazing and not talked about, enough.
I find Sunfire a bit more "aggressive" in nature than REL...this could also be slightly exaggerated due to the REL being a more laid-back, Brit sound sub...both are very clean and musical...and considering there are really only a handful of decent subs out there...worth considering...they both mate well with Maggies and Quads....which is probably the highest recommendation I can give..
I guess I would need to hear a REL unit to compare. The Architectural Sunfire was awesome with my Maggies. I couldn't imagine that the REL would sound better. It's a different situation when your living out in the boone docks. Not being able to audition different upper end items. But one does get curious after they read good articles about products. I appreciate all of the opinions once again. I had better stay with what I know with my own ears. Thanks again................
I am currently using a stereo pair of The Sunfire Signature sub with my MG 3.5/R with excellent results. Properly configured and positioned Sunfire Signatures are very musical, extended with excellent definition and articulation.
I found the Sunfire mcuh easier to blend than the RELs (Strata, Storms, Stadiums) in my listening room (suspended wood floor). The down firing RELs were always too "boomy" and were difficult to integrate because of the absence of a continuously variable phase control (either 0/180 degrees). Whereas, the Sunfire's Phase control can be varied continuously (from 0 to 180)
I feel very strongly, that the negative propaganda re the Sunfire subs, are mostly due to poor placement (need to be away from room boundaries) and incorrect setup (volume too high, phase not properly adjusted).
In my experience, the Sunfire Signature is better in every respect (except for appearance) than the Architectural series. The Architectural series is not as extended and does not have the same sense of ease and control.
Samski, you're dead wrong. Not even close with that remark. You're going to steer him wrong with that ridiculous statement. You couldn't be furthur from the truth. The Architectural Sunfire will go tete a tete with that British downfiring sub of yours, and do more than hold it's own. In a blindfolded test: it would kick it's ass...
I had both the Rel Storm III and the Sunfire Signature. The Rel wouldn't go low enough to really augment the bass of my Merlin VSMs, and it didn't blend very well with them. I never could get it to mate very well with the Merlins, and sold it. I bought the Sunfire for my Home Theatre, thinking the same as Samski. I was shocked to find that the Sunfire was better. It was far more dynamic and went way deeper. It was also much easier to place because of it's size. The Sunfire was absolutely seamless when crossed over under 50 hz.
Sunfire has a bad rep in "hi end circles"...mainly due to the poor quality of Carver componets after Bob left...bottom line: a sub is a driver AND an amp...a very powerful one at that...REL are nice..but Sunfire is no slouch...I dont find them "boomy" at all...but then again...this is if a sub..any sub..including REL ... is set up properly....hi enders can be very snobbish in regards to equipment....Sunfire are great subs...enjoy
I agree with Phasecorrect that there is some element of snobbery towards the Sunfire products by some in the so-called "high-end" community. I have a good friend who works for a top high-end store in NYC. He laughed at me when I told him that I had bought a pair of Sunfire Signatures (he had tried to sell me the REL Strata III, Storm III and the Stadium II, he has since "seen the light" much to his chagrin). I could never (to my satisfaction) blend, successfully, the RELs with my highly modified Magnepan 3.5/R. The RELs were too "boomy" in my listening room and relied mainly on placemnent for blending due to the absence of a continuously variable Phase control. The Sunfire Signatures were a revelation in terms of their ability to be seamlessly integrated with my maggies. I was surprised by the thigh, defined, smooth and dynamic bass reproduction. The Subs were dead quiet (no audible hum). The blend is so seamless that you cannot detect, easily, the presence of the subwoofer.
With the stereo Sunfire Subs, and my maggies, I have been approximating the performance of the "mega-bucks" speaker systems. In my room, I have almost flat response from about 16Hz to 20kHz. The bottom line is that the Sunfire Subs have enhanced, greatly, my enjoyment of the music.
I could care less about the opinions of those who propagate the negative propaganda about a very fine product.
I just returned from a two hundred fifty mile trip to seek out the REL subwoofers. I listened to both Sunfires and RELs. However they didn't have any Maggies but they did have Martin Logans. I thought the REL subs sounded muttery and not at all like the Sunfire Signatures. This is all about opinions and I'm certain that several will disagree with mine too. Bottom line is ...... I came home with a brand new Sunfire Architectural Signature. Maybe the REL does work with other speakers. But even with the MLs they didn't blend well at all. As for Maggies vs MLs. I already chose Maggies for their superior performance over the other. Thanks for all of the opinions and a special thanks to those whom are Maggie owners.....................
Zenieth: Congratulations. I am happy that you used your own ears to make your purchasing decision. Ultimately, that is what matters. As you can see from this forum, opinions are "dime-a-dozen".
When properly integrated with the maggies, you will have a full range system which will make beautiful music, that will be hard to beat for under $10k.
I owned the sunfire signatures and the MK2 and both are not in my system anymore. I have the REL Stentor 2 and will be getting the REL Stentor 3 . I also had the ENTEC SW 10. Rel stumps them all. I have both the Quad ELS 63 USA monitors and Maggies 3.6R Jadis Jp 80 preamp and VTL 450 monoblocks amps. I wish I could afford 2 Stentor 3 subs.