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post #1 of 26 Old 04-19-2009, 02:29 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Guys,

How does this sub stack-up against the competition these days. I know JL is perhaps a clear favorite but I would like some opinions on the ML Descent.

I currently have a REL B2. It is a fantastic sub for stereo and I have enjoyed it in this setting. The area that I feel could use some improvement is for HT. I just don't get the punch I think I am looking for.

I want more than the REL can give for HT but do not want to sacrifice much of the quality for stereo that the REL excells in.

Looks are important as well as SQ. Wish it were not the case but it is. The ML looks sharp. Is this design functional?

I have spend quite a bit of money over the past year on my system and do not want to dig into my savings.

I can get zero percent financing on the ML Descent. I would like a pair of whatever subs I end up with down the road wether its the REL , ML or other..

If it matters, my front stage is Dynaudio Confidence C1's and Confidence Center.

I do want to be careful as I have only made one tiny mistake thus far and it's not really a mistake but I do not think I would have bought the REL for HT if I could turn the clocks back..For music, it's great. I need both!

Don't want remorse with sub number two...

Might the Descent be what I am looking for? I think I will go take the hour drive and check it out...

Thanks
Rick
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post #2 of 26 Old 04-19-2009, 03:14 PM
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I suspect that you would find that they perform very similarly, actually.

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post #3 of 26 Old 04-20-2009, 05:24 AM
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I have the Descent i in my secondary theater. Very powerful,fast, tight clean articulate bass. Just make sure you get the "i" version. Has that nice sealed sub sound but with lots of power.
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post #4 of 26 Old 04-20-2009, 01:22 PM
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Since looks matter, I would consider JL Audio. It absolutely smokes the M/L in a HT application, w/o sacrificing anything in the musical department.
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post #5 of 26 Old 04-20-2009, 03:48 PM
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I have a Martin Logan Descent and buddy of mine has a JL F113.


Tightness and clean low distortion bass the ML wins. Full out assault SPL the JL wins hands down. Both are very good at what they do but both are give and take. If your willing to give up some SPL's the Descent will give you a very clean tight sound that is very musical but yet can still Punch you in the gut when needed. If your willing to give up some musicality and tightness the F113 will play louder and give you more kick.

I will say that balanced subs like the Martin Logan really do work at creating an inert enclosure for less distortion. If you set a nickle on it's side on top of the Descent it will never fall down at any volume level. The JL on the other hand is one of the best nickel shooters I have ever seen, lol. We set a nickle on it's side on top of my friends F113 and played the cannon scene in Master and Commander. One good cannon shot and we bounced the nickle off three walls before it hit the ground, lol.

After living with a balanced sub for a few years I find it hard to go back to a single driver sub. I have been considering selling my Decent because I would like more SPL's but don't want to give up that clean bass. More then likly I'm going to go with a Mark Seaton SubMersive. But JL vs. the Descent there both great subs and I highly recommend them both.
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post #6 of 26 Old 04-20-2009, 03:55 PM
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I'm sorry, but I have to disagree with Zip. I owned a ML Descent for over 5 years and it's a great sub. However, I recently moved to dual JL Audio f113s....and I haven't given up any musicality or tightness whatsoever. IMO...the f113 beats the Descent in all aspects. There isn't anything that I feel the Descent does better than the f113 (unless you count balancing a nickel as a positive towards your listening experience).
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post #7 of 26 Old 04-22-2009, 12:49 AM
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Where does the HSU ULS-15 fit in this discussion? I heard it had SQ similar to the Fathom, in a larger box but with a lower price.
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post #8 of 26 Old 04-22-2009, 11:50 AM
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Why are you pushing that sub so much?
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post #9 of 26 Old 04-22-2009, 06:53 PM
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It's a question. I am considering buying a ULS-15, but was also looking at the Fathom. So I am curious to see what people in a similar situation do. I don't think this thread even mentioned HSU, and I'd like to know why people pick the Fathom, the Descent etc over it. I'd like to hear those reasons before I buy the HSU rather than after.
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post #10 of 26 Old 04-22-2009, 06:57 PM
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I think it has a lot to do with the fact that there aren't any real world tests/reviews on the ULS 15's. Not to mention, it seems that the owners are scarce on these threads.
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post #11 of 26 Old 04-22-2009, 07:08 PM
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I have dual F112's. I will soon be helping a friend install the Hsu Dual-Drive system. When I do, I'll start a thread about the experience.

Craig

Edit: A while back, I had a ML Descent in my home for a weekend. It is an excellent sub.

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post #12 of 26 Old 04-22-2009, 07:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by craig john View Post

I have dual F112's. I will soon be helping a friend install the Hsu Dual-Drive system. When I do, I'll start a thread about the experience.

Craig

Edit: A while back, I had a ML Descent in my home for a weekend. It is an excellent sub.

How soon is "soon"? My finger has been on the trigger for a sub purchase for a while.
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post #13 of 26 Old 04-22-2009, 08:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gchuva View Post

How soon is "soon"? My finger has been on the trigger for a sub purchase for a while.

He's waiting on a custom built cabinet system. I'm guessing a week or two.

Craig

PS. So as not to hijack the thread, let's take any more discussion to PM's.

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post #14 of 26 Old 04-22-2009, 08:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zip3kx07 View Post

I have a Martin Logan Descent and buddy of mine has a JL F113.


Tightness and clean low distortion bass the ML wins. Full out assault SPL the JL wins hands down. Both are very good at what they do but both are give and take. If your willing to give up some SPL's the Descent will give you a very clean tight sound that is very musical but yet can still Punch you in the gut when needed. If your willing to give up some musicality and tightness the F113 will play louder and give you more kick.

I will say that balanced subs like the Martin Logan really do work at creating an inert enclosure for less distortion. If you set a nickle on it's side on top of the Descent it will never fall down at any volume level. The JL on the other hand is one of the best nickel shooters I have ever seen, lol. We set a nickle on it's side on top of my friends F113 and played the cannon scene in Master and Commander. One good cannon shot and we bounced the nickle off three walls before it hit the ground, lol.

After living with a balanced sub for a few years I find it hard to go back to a single driver sub. I have been considering selling my Decent because I would like more SPL's but don't want to give up that clean bass. More then likly I'm going to go with a Mark Seaton SubMersive. But JL vs. the Descent there both great subs and I highly recommend them both.

I have to disagree here. I owned a Descent for several weeks and while it blended well with my speakers, I could not get it to sound as tight as the Velodyne DD series I had here. I have also heard the JL's quite a few times and it was easily tighter and louder than the Descent. The Descent would have been the least expensive for me but it didn't quite match the JL or DD18 (which I bought) in the quality of bass.

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post #15 of 26 Old 04-22-2009, 09:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by craig john View Post

I have dual F112's. I will soon be helping a friend install the Hsu Dual-Drive system. When I do, I'll start a thread about the experience.

Craig

Edit: A while back, I had a ML Descent in my home for a weekend. It is an excellent sub.

I too look forward to your impressions, as I just purchased my first of two F112's.

What size room do you have your JL's in, and what are your impressions?

Edit: Pm'd
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post #16 of 26 Old 04-22-2009, 10:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mixdoctor View Post

I have to disagree here. I owned a Descent for several weeks and while it blended well with my speakers, I could not get it to sound as tight as the Velodyne DD series I had here. I have also heard the JL's quite a few times and it was easily tighter and louder than the Descent. The Descent would have been the least expensive for me but it didn't quite match the JL or DD18 (which I bought) in the quality of bass.

Question here is did you really expect the Descent with it's three little 10" woofers to offer the same performance as a 13" JL or 18" Velodyne?

Three 10's do have there benefits over a single 10" but if hard hitting bass with an SPL that can pressurize a room is what your looking for there is no replacement for displacement.
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post #17 of 26 Old 04-22-2009, 10:19 PM
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i have a descent and loved it. at the time I auditioned the grotto as well as the def tech 18" sub, and I thought the descent was the best of the 3 by far.

the 18" sub was way too slow to blend well with my ML mains.
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post #18 of 26 Old 04-22-2009, 10:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zip3kx07 View Post

Question here is did you really expect the Descent with it's three little 10" woofers to offer the same performance as a 13" JL or 18" Velodyne?

Three 10's do have there benefits over a single 10" but if hard hitting bass with an SPL that can pressurize a room is what your looking for there is no replacement for displacement.

Three 10" woofers combined have about the same surface area as a single 18" woofer.
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post #19 of 26 Old 04-23-2009, 12:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zip3kx07 View Post

Question here is did you really expect the Descent with it's three little 10" woofers to offer the same performance as a 13" JL or 18" Velodyne?

Three 10's do have there benefits over a single 10" but if hard hitting bass with an SPL that can pressurize a room is what your looking for there is no replacement for displacement.

Actually my main problem with the Descent wasn't the spl it was just that it did not sound as tight and clean as I had hoped. I think it is a good sub, but that balanced setup didn't sound as clean as a true sealed sub. I haven't heard the Descent i model yet, which has more power and I believe goes lower, but the older model didn't do it for me.

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post #20 of 26 Old 04-23-2009, 12:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zip3kx07 View Post

I have a Martin Logan Descent and buddy of mine has a JL F113.


Tightness and clean low distortion bass the ML wins. Full out assault SPL the JL wins hands down. Both are very good at what they do but both are give and take. If your willing to give up some SPL's the Descent will give you a very clean tight sound that is very musical but yet can still Punch you in the gut when needed. If your willing to give up some musicality and tightness the F113 will play louder and give you more kick.

I will say that balanced subs like the Martin Logan really do work at creating an inert enclosure for less distortion. If you set a nickle on it's side on top of the Descent it will never fall down at any volume level. The JL on the other hand is one of the best nickel shooters I have ever seen, lol. We set a nickle on it's side on top of my friends F113 and played the cannon scene in Master and Commander. One good cannon shot and we bounced the nickle off three walls before it hit the ground, lol.

After living with a balanced sub for a few years I find it hard to go back to a single driver sub. I have been considering selling my Decent because I would like more SPL's but don't want to give up that clean bass. More then likly I'm going to go with a Mark Seaton SubMersive. But JL vs. the Descent there both great subs and I highly recommend them both.

the sub rocking really does not add any distortion, but it does take energy (SPL) out of the system (to what degree i dont know), I do agree i would have designed the gotham different. I think they missed a big opportunity to mass balance. Front firing is not nearly important for HT, it starts to matter when you get into pro audio installation and design where you don't have room coupling.

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post #21 of 26 Old 04-23-2009, 12:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xcjago View Post

Three 10" woofers combined have about the same surface area as a single 18" woofer.

closer to two 12's (a tad smaller than an 18 tho)

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post #22 of 26 Old 04-23-2009, 12:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dsiroky View Post

i have a descent and loved it. at the time I auditioned the grotto as well as the def tech 18" sub, and I thought the descent was the best of the 3 by far.

the 18" sub was way too slow to blend well with my ML mains.

damn those slow 18's if only there was a way to increase their speed.....



oh wait there is...






VOLUME!


doh.....

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post #23 of 26 Old 04-23-2009, 10:22 AM
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Kyle....I'm not going to tell you again. Stop covertly leaking the secrets of the black subwoofer arts.
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post #24 of 26 Old 04-23-2009, 11:39 AM
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Quote:
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Kyle....I'm not going to tell you again. Stop covertly leaking the secrets of the black subwoofer arts.

lol

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post #25 of 26 Old 04-24-2009, 07:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks Guys for the input.

You will think I am nuts and I would agree with this but I went and auditioned the Descent this afternoon.

It is a very nice sub no doubt. I was impressed with its performance while watching "The Transformers" and "Live Free or Die Hard".

During stereo playback I was not as impressed as I thought I would be. Like I have stated the REL is a special sub for stereo playback. It just seems to blend in better with the mains to me. I like a sub with my Dynaudio monitors for stereo playback.

I listened to their REL B1 (they don't have the B2 like mine on display) and it is just such a great sub for stereo. It is more powerful and has a 12inch woof compared to my 10 but still it sounded pretty darn good using the same movies as mentioned above.

So after my comment about REL in HT in my original post, I went ahead and ordered another REL B2. I want to see how a pair does and I also am going to start from scratch with set-up. I think there is room for improvement.

I am sure the JL and maybe others will stomp my set-up, I wanted to stick with the Magnolia 0 percent financing, the good deal I got and the fact that I have one already that's paid for. 30 days to return number 2 if it doesn't work out and then I guess it's time to look at JL and others.

What a nut ehhh?

I am excited about having dual subs for the first time ever..

I will let you know how it goes if anyone is interested. Won't be here for two weeks.

Thanks again for your input.

Rick
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post #26 of 26 Old 04-24-2009, 08:49 PM
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a pair shoudl sound great for stereo mode, put each sub right next your speakers and try and run your receiver in LFC+main mode (or the equivalent) and let the REL's take over the low stuff for the mains - it would be nice to be able to do an FR response in your room of your mains so you can really fine tune that crossover, but if you do it right, you should not notice a difference between your mains and your sub (They should sound like one speaker)

but for the record, you can pretty much get almost any sub to sound seemless with your mains, its really a matter of being able to measure and tweak the xover and play with the gain and EQ. I'm not saying its easy, but i think you did make a good choice by going with 2 subs vs. one.

You might want to consider a 4th order sub to take over from 40-50Hz on down (for example) and you can get away with just one of those in the corner. Consider a big 15 or 18" sub with a low tuning point.

good luck

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