Where's the bass?


Need help.Had JBL L7'S for many years now.Looks like I have to update.Have listened to Focal Electras 1037,Usher dancers,Totems,Kef and others.All used and around 4-5 grand.What have they done to the bottom end in the last 10 years?None compares with the Jbl's?Have a Sunfire 300-TAD Pre and Cyrus CD.The ones I tested were all more musical and soundstages were better than I'm used to,but are basically bottomless.What am I missing.Has everyone turned into an "audiofile"?
rlspence
Funny! I guess bass has no WAF. You just have to look harder.
Why I design and manufacture my own loudspeakers, most loudspeakers available are designed as much by bean counters and to pass WAF as they are for performance. To pass bean counters small cab, easy to build and ship,small drivers again saves cost, for WAF small and a nice finish. So many audiophiles buy the costly wee loudspeakers hoping to get performance but also tying to get loudspeaker past she or he who must be obeyed.
there are balanced speakers out there 'big and small', but many are designed to emphasis mid-range, which is the flavor many audiophiles crave. as for the balanced 'fullrange', hales, chapman, duntech, dunlavy, ohm and others will do bass for sure. you may just want to keep the L7's.
Legacy Classics have bottom end if you can use floorstanders. If not,I have found a nice sub with musical monitors is a viable option.
Definitive Technology ST or STS have built in subs. Bass galore and reasonable price.
Many of the older speakers didn't have bass, they had boom. Nothing wrong with boom - people love that stuff. Juke boxes are all boom and people love the sound. The better new speakers are meant to have pitch-accurate bass in that you can actually hear the notes the bass player is playing, as opposed to just hearing a rumble of something going on down there. Home theatre subs carry on the boom tradition and you can always add one to augment the sound of a modern high-end speaker as necessary.

Of course, bass is hugely dependent on the room-speaker interaction which can be controlled when building a listening room from scratch, but is often unpredictable in the normal domestic situation. If you still have the JBLs, I think you need to bring them to the dealer to compare side by side with your new choice to see if what you're hearing is due to the speaker or the room.

You should also check out the Cerwin Vega CLS-215 speakers REG reviewed in the March Absolute sound. 2 15" woofers and some horns. They have "some extra energy" below 300hz, which sounds like what you're looking for. And a grand to boot! Have fun.
Cripes - I just did a quick check and the Cerwins can be had new for under $600!.
I agree with Chayro. I might add Klipsch to the mix.
I know, in my early days, I always looked for the boom but as I get older and look for a more refined sound, Timbre seems where it's at for me.
the L7's don't boom at all, they just have incredibly low, articulate bass.
Find yourself some used NHT 3.3's. They will give you all of the audiophile stuff while still giving you the bass you want. The sunfire will drive them fine.
To pass bean counters small cab, easy to build and ship,small drivers again saves cost, for WAF small and a nice finish. So many audiophiles buy the costly wee loudspeakers hoping to get performance but also tying to get loudspeaker past she or he who must be obeyed.

Ain't that the truth!! Frankly, I figure WAF is not just for Wives - lets be honest, for the majority of audiophiles, it is as much an aesthetic contest as it is about the sound. $300 dollar worth of drivers in $5000 of beautifully veneered coffins is where it is at. (Who cares if a single high quality woofer costs close to a $1000 when one can get magnolia veneer instead)
And try a single Duelund VSF Copper Foil capacitor for $900?
You could easily spend $10,000-$15,000 on quality drivers and crossovers sitting on your kitchen benchtop......but even Magico don't go that far....except perhaps with the M5?
Sure many vintage are not so hi performing but some are like Altec JBL. I still use old altec drivers they test and sound better than most modern woofers till you get into the $1000 range. Im working on our new bass system with fostexs new 31.5in woofer. It will be very pretty but 5ft wide;) If you want bass thats not forced and can still plump the depths size matters.
I understand. It took me about 5 years with audiophile speakers to realize that I needed bassier sound to really enjoy listening to most of my music collection. I owned JBL 4311 control monitors in the 80s, and what I liked most about those fantastic speakers was the bass that could be felt and heard from the 12-inch woofers. Check out Vandersteens for full range speakers with good bass and refined high end.