Separate Sub +Tower or Integrated Sub

I read Wes Phillips Definitive STS Mythos review in Stereophile, Was suprised that 2 x 300 W powered subs inbuilt in the tower measured lower 16 Hz compared to my Velodyne 10" SPL 1000 at 24 hz (1000 W RMS amp). Also would like to understand what glassiness in the mid range means ?.

I am a music listener, I have these options
- $3000 Definitive STS Mythos
- $3000 (Tower + Separate Sub anything else e.g. PSB Imagine T ($2000) with my velodyne SPL 1000 ($1000)

I can assemble a pair of towers and a sub still couldnt match Mythos low performance 16 Hz. Is there a way to get the low frequency performance and high clear quality musical sound or Is there a better option ? Any recommendation is appreciated.


The power (watts) delivered by a powered sub and the subs low end frequency response are two different things. Each powered sub will measure differently in each regard. Some subs go down to 20 hz or less and some only to 30-40 hz or so. More power will generally be needed to produce equivalent levels in larger rooms. Same true with integrated subs. Either approach can deliver similar results.

For audio, the sub should be adjustable so that it can blend in smoothly with the separate speakers. Same true for home theater, but for movie sound effects, etc., you might run a sub at a higher level for extra impact compared to what you would to fill in the low end smoothly for music.
I'd go separates and now worry too much about getting to 16hz unless you really like pipe organs or such. Assuming of course that 16 is achievable and not a specmanship issue? Same money but you have lots of advantages like flexible position of the sub and likely more tuning abilities. you also will have a very wide field of $2000 towers to choose from including used.

Even if you like pipe organs, there are very few organ music recordings that I know of which have much information so low in frequency. Your statement "I am a music listener" implies that we're not discussing movies/HT here. If that's correct, almost all differences in subwoofer performance below 30hz to 35hz are IMO not very meaningful.

Separate subs allow optimal placement and (assuming that you get that right) they will virtually always provide smoother bass response within their operating range than will integrated subs. OTOH, you may have to do more work to achieve this and -more importantly- maintain a seamless blend with your main speakers.

Good Luck,

Thanks for the recomendations.

I appreciate it. Will start thinking along separate sub since I already have Velodyne have many options. This really opens up many floor standing speaker systems as you suggested in $1500 - $2000 range (I am thinking PSB Imagine T, KEF iQ90, Revel Concerta F-12, Monitor Audio RX6)

Just some background, trying to upgrade from Definite Technology BP10 I used for 16 years. What would forum consider as an upgrade (really dont want to down grade in quality and size).

Want to use my ADCOM 545 II (100wpc). Any floor standing speakers worth looking at blending in with Velodyne and matching with the ADCOM is appreiated.

For a floor stander, you may want to check out the Boston
Acoustics E 100 towers. Fantastic speaker IMO and being
sold for $2200 shipped. They were $5k.
I owned the Mythos STS and ST's and while they are fine speakers, I like the E 100's better.
Same basic foot print as DT, but 6'5" tall. And beautiful!

I plan on adding a sub when able.
Thanks appreicate the recommendation