Smaller speaker - bigger Woofer?

This is variation on the BIG STUPID WARM SPEAKERS thread. After moving up the ranks of B&W's (now owning the 804's), I still miss something about the sound of my old $300 a pair Infinitys with their 15" woofer I owned in the 80's.

Actually about everything was wrong with them, the Emit tweeter was awful, the woofers growled at you even when they were off, but they had that big warm sound that I'm missing with more expensive/refined speakers.

That big warm sound was great with rock but also worked well with jazz and classical.

In the BIG STUPID WARM thread I heard about some good big bass speakers like the Legacy's, Dynaudio's etc, but those are monster speakers and though the room is big, the wife doesn't want monster speakers.

I'm using the newest Cary gear for electronics - prepro, amp, cd player (about $10K in electronics) so I'm not looking for cheap Infinity - Klipsch - Cerwin Vega stuff.

I'm looking for a quality speaker with a big warm sound and larger drivers in a smaller package (and no small speakers and a sub isn't the same). Does any of this ring a bell?

If you want to put a big woofer in a small box the solution is an isobaric setup (Two woofers, one behind the other...half the box volume).

Over to you sean.
I'm not necessarily talking about a tiny box, but something not over 48" tall.
I think I understand what you're looking for, but I doubt you'll find many choices with large woofers. There are some warm sounding speakers with multiple small woofers that you might like. Try Soliloquy 6.3 or 6.5, Aerial 7B, or Vienna Acoustics Mahler. The Soliloquy 6.5, which I own, has three 6.5" woofers, which gives the same effective area as one 11" woofer. It has tons of slam, yet has the quickness small drivers provide. It has a very "big" sound. The Mahlers also have a big, warm, sound but their bass is a bit looser that the Soliloquys.
If you haven't heard Aerials or Vandersteens, I suggest giving them a listen. They are often described to sound along the lines of what you are asking for. Cary/Vandersteen are often demoed together at dealers.
They are both companies that have good reps for service, and are more likely to be around in ten years than many of their competitors. Cheers,
I'm actually demoing some Vandersteen 3A's in my home but find their bass output disappointing.

I know exactly what you mean. Years ago I thought if you didn't have a 12 inch woofer you weren't going to get the sound. I actually had disco speakers with two 12" woofers they really kicked on low end but couldn't handle classical. Wife made me get rid of them so I went B&W N802's. Not bad with a lot of power pushing them, but no where near what I use to get out of my GLI's as far as slam. I've heard Vandersteens, I don't remember the top model # but it had a seperate built in amp for the woofer not bad. I recently audition the N800's with two 10" woofers it made a difference. Either of those two are in my future. I guess what I trying to say is that you can't V8 performance from a 4 cylinder speaker.
Ps: I have the B&W Nautlis ASW4000 sub with a built in 450 watts amp and a 15" woofer. Shakes the floor on movies but not the same when listening to music. Wish you the best in your search, but the N804's sounds like they are too light for your taste.
Any thoughts on auditioning the Gallo Ref 3s?With their bass augmentation,you may get what you are looking for.The "warmth factor" can be adjusted with their 3-position tweeter switch.Just a thought-my two cents.
I don't know how diffrent the newer N804's are vs the Matrix 804's that I have, but I'm guessing it's not major bass difference.

I'd love to hear the Gallo's if I could just find a dealer anywhere near me.

I'll bet there's a market out there for a higher end aspiring speaker with larger bass drivers. Sure some imaging, soundstaging, etc. might be lost (though not necessarily), but there's just something you get with larger drivers that can't be duplicated with rows of smaller drivers or powered subs. It affects the whole presentation - and for me, in a good way.
You would need to go into a 3-way design at a point...another X-over. Eldartford has the right idea for small box design, I've listened to a pair of these years ago and they were stunning in their bass quality.

Bass is about moving air. Moving air is about the size of the driver.

I am using a pair of 12" Shiva woofers on each side: in open baffle design and push-pull configuration, located on the side walls near the main panels which are several feet from the wall behind.

Now let's talk about accuracy as opposed to distortion. Accurate bass in the lower frequencies is not heard that much because there isn't that much in the recordings. Due to either inferior producing and/or engineering, or simply because the musicaians do not necessarily provide it. It is not as though that was their goal :-)

Anyway, when it is there, the specific instrument, and its location in the soundstage should be identifiable.

A boom-box for instance provides a lot of bass (low frequency noise) but usually you cannot identify any instrument in the band making that 'noise'. It is magnified reinforced distortion. The 'sound' you get when woofers are located too close to the corner: exciting those pesky room modes all the more.

The 'bass reinforcment' you get by locating speakers close to the wall behind, or especially in the corner, is a euphamism for 'distortion'. That distortion then tends to smear the entire frequency range in the room, leaving the system little chance for any kind of realism in playback.

To each his own, I suppose.
Larry actually for what you want to spend and the equipment you already own, your best options are either the ATC SCM35 or Dynaudio Audience 80 with subwoofer and or bookshelf speakers like Dynaudio 25's or ATC SCM20's with a subwoofers. What you want is a big midbass sound which can be dialed in with the right crossover settings and right speaker combo you can get what you want. It may take 2 subs in your room.

Vandersteen have a horribly thin midrange and your amplifier is choking on the speaker which is killing the bass output and making the speaker sound even thinner. WRONG SPEAKER!!!

I have solved this problem for many people and I know what you need but unfortunately in this forum you'll never believe it to be possible. I'd have to show you for you to believe it. but Dolby prologic II is the gateway for you and proper setup of your surround. Im not sure if your Cary processor has the goods to be good for multi channel music as the attention to the setup parameters is a bit sparse, especially in the subwoofer crossover department. but you can try.

Let me just say they don't make what you are looking for, most the cabinets for a high performance speaker with big drivers will cost more than your budgeted for.

I've always hated the sound of having the subwoofer dialed in over 60hz. Just gives an ugly bloat in the minds and messes up the sound across the spectrum. When I've had speakers with big bass drivers built in, they did a better job of recreating ambience and even the treble was less harsh and better integrated with a certain kind of ambience detail and integration you can't get with a sub.

One problem with the Vandersteens is the guy who brought them over was demoing with Kimber Cable - yikes. Putting in my speaker cable has obviously really improved the sound, but it's still not what I'm looking for.

I'll check out the Dynaudio. Maybe a smaller version with a sub is as close as I'm going to get.
The problem with 'adding' sub(s) is the crossover. If the monitors go down to say 50hz, and sub(s) range is up to 100hz, or whatever, you are doubling up a 50hz range, leaving a seam in the intetration. Plus the mids of the monitors are still getting low frequency info and continue to strain under it.

With an active XO the mids can cut off at the same frequency subs are engaged for improved integration. Best is probably 100-120hz depending though.

Indicating there is something to be said for aquiring a system that is already designed. Then all that is needed is proper setup for you room.

Anyway, check out the study paper on woofer location: LINKS link/ 'Subwoofers: Optimum number and location' / 'Getting the Bass Right' link

Both my dble 12" subs / Phoenix / Woofer, are on the side wall next to the main panels / Dvorak, severl feet from the wall behind (and those problematic corners) for that very purpose.
You have to get the right sub with the right speaker and crossover. Understanding what it takes means everything.

Most people are not able for one reason or another to align their subwoofers properly so that the units are time coherent. In your case you surround processor does not have a sophisticated enough processor to manage proper integration. So i don't disagree with what you have experienced but it can be done quite seemlessly. I do it all the time with my own system.

If you like you can order some custom speakers, I emailed you on this matter. You may not have received it. It is not a joke and I am already building a pair for someone else. They are exactly what you are looking for except the trade off in size means a subwoofer is needed to give the last octave a boost in Dynamic Range.

They are a three way with 6" mid and 8" woofers 44"H, 10"w, 14"D they have active crossovers which gives us plenty of Latitude to make them sound anyway you want. All I have to do is send you a corrected file and you upload the new file to the crossover and the edit is made via email. This is not a toy one off I'm offerring you.
Someone is trying to sell something :-)

Check out for DIY sub, or full range speakers for that matter. Or just knowledge in speaker design... pretty much truth in all things audio.

A great resourse for the novice to become less vulnerable to wanna be's, and think they are's.
I agree the Linkwitz site is a good guideline for two channel systems and dipole bass. It wouldn't hurt to read but at the same time it doesn't address your issue directly.

I have helped with the construction of the Orion and it is a very good speaker. But its more than you mentioned you wanted to spend and somehow (from experience) may require component complexity you won't desire.

And I challenge Didactilly to suggest a speaker that fits your description and fits your price range. Since we know its very easy to vaguely criticize when you don't feel morally obligated to offer a hard solution at the same time.

Yes I am offerring service, because no one has come up with a solution yet and my commercially available ones didn't seem to resonate well.
Well, the poster did say that he could live with a 48" tall speaker, he should have no problem finding a speaker that fits his needs.

Small speaker with large woofer in a two way design is a problem unless as Eldartford mentioned. I did hear a pair of Linn (I think) isobaric speakers that had outstanding bass quality for their size. This was years ago but it stuck in my mind...I have only owned full-range speakers for many years as my main system.

What you didn't see was the $3000 budget, which is the real crimper. In a related but another thread.

and Dave unfortunately you have not recommended something that will work. Which is why I resulted to offerring something unusual.