Originally Posted by QueueCumber
I would definitely appreciate a list of any albums you feel drive speakers to their excursion limits. I could definitely use more albums to play around with at home and when doing demos.
Ill start listening to my Dave Brubeck and Bela Fleck more so that I become more familiar with what they offer.
In terms of 802D vs. 800D, I could not tell them apart in the dealer's room with their selection of jazz (I had forgotten to bring my pipe organ cds that time). With the same crossover points and only 2hz more extension, its going to be tough. In fact, since all of the drivers are the same material, unless they use a higher quality crossover at the crossover points which I am unaware of...
The only thing I can think of is that the 800D will produce bass with less effort (excursion) than the 802D. Bass distortion (at this level) is very hard to hear though, so I am not sure what sort of cues you can look for.
While I have not heard anybody complain about it, larger cabinets may tend to have slightly worse imaging than smaller cabinets.
For bass handling, Felix Hell Organ Sensation (Reference Recordings RR-101CD) will always be my chief "benchmark" since I have not found another disk that contains such strong sustained 16-25hz bass tones.
For most "normal people" I am not convinced (yet) that moving from the 802D to the 800D reaps the benefit commanded by the almost doubling of price. By "normal" I mean people who listen to music where 34hz is as low as the instruments produce. If I were classified as "abnormal" due to my heavy interest in pipe organ music, and money was not a concern, the 2hz extention would be a very tough sell because I would "need" at least 16hz more.
If the JL F113 is as what they are saying in the subwoofer forum, then I would strongly consider 2 of them and cross them at 30hz.
My only real world comparison of "better floorstander vs. lesser floorstander + sub" is between the 803s vs 804s + ACI Maestro XL.
With the Maestro XL crossed at 45hz (great care was taken in subwoofer setup) the 804s MeastroXL combo trounced the 803s in the following ways:
The smaller 804s had a better stereo image.
The combo had clean and useful bass extention down to 17hz (-3db) where the 803s was missing the 16hz-32hz octave.
The way I quantified the "missing octave" was that at normal volumes ~ 75db avg w/ peaks of 92db, the low C sustained note in Track 17 of the Felix Hell cd gave me this sensation in my chest when the Maestro XL was in action. This sensation was missing with the 803s.
Now my comparison was made possible by a dealer who let me take the 803s home and a very nice apartment mate who helped me with the moving. The 800d isnt exactly something that is easy to transport and borrowing from the dealer might pose impossible.