Originally Posted by MechanicalMan
Just an assumption, but I can't imagine that Monoprice dictated the use of HDF because they believed the average Monoprice customer was going to be more wowed by denser fiberboard. Even if the choice was made arbitrarily or purely for marketing, surely it would be Claridy making the decision? Again, just an assumption, but I doubt that Monoprice was giving much input beyond "put our logo on it."
The ID subwoofer market is extremely crowded with many well established makes all at similar price points and with personalized one on interaction directly with the designers/ owners of certain ones. Part of any design strategy is making your product stand out in a crowded market and consumers(especially male consumer) are wowed by weight in electronics. This isn't some big secret for those of us in retail but I digress . So you're saying Claridy couldn't have met these same design goals without a THX logo or slightly denser board?
If making a good first impression was really a top priority in Monoprice/Claridy's design choices, then why are Monolith subwoofers so ungodly ugly? I don't think that seemed to be a big concern with these subs. If that was really the focus, then they dropped the ball -- because the subs look terrible (IMO), and for me, the weight (particularly of the ported 15") is a turnoff as well. Personally, I find Claridy's Outlaw designs much more superficially appealing, while the Monolith subs seem to prioritize function over form to almost an extreme.
Look. I was in the auto industry for decades. I understand what the majority of male buyers hone in on and good looks ain't it. They want to know that their truck can pull a tree stump out of the ground from a dead stop and haul a fifth wheel. If I had a dollar for every time I had to try to talk some guy out of buying a dually diesel crew cab pickup to pull his fishing boat I'd be a millionaire. They talked rear axle ratios and horsepower to torque weight ratings better than most industry engineers I trained under did.
Monoprice's marketing philosophy is and always has been costs less, performs as well if not better than but isn't as pretty as. That's literally been their whole business model. Subwoofers period have very low WAF so the marketing strategy can go one of two ways. Offer the wood veneer and piano black finishes at a higher cost to appeal to those of us with a significant other or make it plain jane but engineer the hell out of it and come in at or under other performance leaders price points. Got an AT screen in a dedicated room or no other decision maker of the opposite gender for placement in a non dedicated space and the rest who care more about a sub's looks won't touch their bottom line much because they captured the market that they were aiming for.
When one car manufacturer went from a welded frame to a more modular hydro formed frame they all went to it. When one went from a non clear coated paint to a clear coated ELPO primered paint job they all went to it. When one went from front air bags to side curtain air bags with rollover protection they all went to it. Same for dual fuel, six speed automatic transmissions, electronic power steering, backup sensors etc... The fact that the industry standard isn't HDF tells me everything I need to know. Heck it isn't even more than Monolith's standard other than the birch bark that DSS and FA uses for its custom market.
Regardless of your awareness of the name, Claridy's Monolith, Outlaw and (perhaps to a lesser degree) XTZ subwoofers all have excellent reputations.
It's not just my awareness and I own Outlaw products. I'm also not so arrogant to say if I personally haven't heard a name that name doesn't matter. That's not my point. What I'm saying is that Claridy hasn't found something that the founder's of SVS/PSA .Rythmik and HSU haven't looked at already and deemed unnecessary to the performance of their product. Products like the FV18 Rythmik that has been recently tested on Data-Bass and Josh never mentioned that it could have used a bit of HDF to make it one of the best ported subwoofers he's tested. The Monolith sub is a great sub for the money but it's a great sub because of many more things than the enclosure density. I get it that it's the sub of the month club
here on AVS for certain people but the S stands for science and there's no science that I've seen that shows HDF performance superiority over MDF. I also recommended the Monolith to the OP. Just thought I'd throw that out there. This discussion is over.