What is the cleanest-sounding Subwoofer amongst these three choices? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 33 Old 07-18-2019, 11:02 AM - Thread Starter
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What is the cleanest-sounding Subwoofer amongst these three choices?

Polk HTS 10"
Elac SQ10
Klipsch R-110SW

Thanks in advance. Also open to other suggestions that aren't SVS, Monolith, HSU, Rhythmik or Emotiva. There's no WAF, they're just bloody ugly (and outside of my budget range - $300 to $500 CDN).
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post #2 of 33 Old 07-18-2019, 11:20 AM
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RSL Speedwoofer 10s > your list.
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post #3 of 33 Old 07-18-2019, 11:26 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by RayGuy View Post
RSL Speedwoofer 10s > your list.
I do appreciate the suggestion, and I truly don't mean this to be rude, but unless I was planning on removing both of my eyes so I didn't have to look at the thing...

Of the three, though, which one is the cleanest-sounding?
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post #4 of 33 Old 07-18-2019, 11:28 AM
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Can't recommend any of them, thus the alternative suggestion. Bottom line, a good sub in a pretty package costs more than you are intending to spend. In order to get what you want, you will have to compromise in performance. For instance, you could go with a Totem Kin Mini Sub or a Kanto Sub 8 (both available in Canada). These are nicer to look at (beauty in the eye of the beholder) than the above, but you give up low frequency extension and overall output capability.

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post #5 of 33 Old 07-18-2019, 12:02 PM
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Of those 3 I would say the ELAC, but version 2.0 is a step up from the original version. Some people just cant grasp the fact that not everyone wants house shaking low frequencies, or $1000+ budget, especially with a picky spouse. Some low end is better than none IMO. The Klipsch I have owned the R112 and currently have the wireless r10swi in my bedroom and it does well. For music of these 3 the ELAC is tough to beat, and I have listened to them all.
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post #6 of 33 Old 07-18-2019, 12:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RayGuy View Post
Can't recommend any of them, thus the alternative suggestion. Bottom line, a good sub in a pretty package costs more than you are intending to spend. in order to get what you want, you will have to compromise in performance. For instance, you could go with a Totem Kin Mini Sub or a Kanto Sub 8 (both available in Canada). These are nicer to look at (beauty in the eye of the beholder) than the above, but you give up low frequency extension and overall output capability.
It doesn't necessarily have to be the best-performing sub on the market nor does it have to reach a frequency range in the low 20's - I do only live in a 900 sq/ft condo/apartment (and the walls aren't very thick between rooms, so I'd like to be able to allow my wife to sleep?). I will probably be fine with a FR in the 30-35 range. I've also looked at the Jamo S810.

I'm already sacrificing performance by limiting it to a 10" already, and I'm not too worried about sacrificing a bit of performance to find something in my budget that isn't an eyesore. This is going to replace a Polk PSW10.

Without offering any other suggestions or whether you would even recommend any of those three, I'm really just looking to find out which one of those has the cleanest sound/has the least amount of distortion/chuffing/etc... It was my fault for asking for any other suggestions, so I do apologize for that.
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post #7 of 33 Old 07-18-2019, 12:56 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Bigbirney View Post
Of those 3 I would say the ELAC, but version 2.0 is a step up from the original version. Some people just cant grasp the fact that not everyone wants house shaking low frequencies, or $1000+ budget, especially with a picky spouse. Some low end is better than none IMO. The Klipsch I have owned the R112 and currently have the wireless r10swi in my bedroom and it does well. For music of these 3 the ELAC is tough to beat, and I have listened to them all.
The 3010 or the DS10.2? Spouse isn't picky, I'm just sick of speakers that are stuck in the 90's as far as design goes. Unless I magically win the lottery or come into some money somehow, I will never get to funk audio levels of nice.

I won't really be listening to music on my HTS (sorry, forgot to mention previously) - it's basically used for watching TV/movies/gaming. I will be setting up a separate, low-profile area for my vinyl whenever I get around to doing that.
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post #8 of 33 Old 07-18-2019, 01:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryan Statz View Post
I do appreciate the suggestion, and I truly don't mean this to be rude, but unless I was planning on removing both of my eyes so I didn't have to look at the thing...

Of the three, though, which one is the cleanest-sounding?
They all look like black boxes to me. There is nothing about any of the three you are looking at that look particularly better than the RSL (in my opinion but I realize beauty is in the eye of the beholder). I guess if I had to go on looks, the Polk looks the "least 90's". If you don't like the RSL, what about the BIC Acoustech PL200 II? It's a pretty decent budget sub.

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post #9 of 33 Old 07-18-2019, 01:04 PM
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Build your own sub using a kit from parts express and then finish it however you want. Put a fedora on it if you want.
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post #10 of 33 Old 07-18-2019, 01:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryan Statz View Post
The 3010 or the DS10.2? Spouse isn't picky, I'm just sick of speakers that are stuck in the 90's as far as design goes. Unless I magically win the lottery or come into some money somehow, I will never get to funk audio levels of nice.

I won't really be listening to music on my HTS (sorry, forgot to mention previously) - it's basically used for watching TV/movies/gaming. I will be setting up a separate, low-profile area for my vinyl whenever I get around to doing that.
Ok, when you said cleanest I was thinking music. I think the 3010 and the Debut Series 10.2 are the same sub. The Klipsch is also a nice unit in that price range. Same power, similar output so its basically a toss up. You can't go wrong with either of them. You can always go bigger down the road. I started out with an Energy 10 five years ago and am upgrading to an 18 soon. Not everyone has the same wants, but both of these will be more than sufficient in a place your size, and still have the ability to anger some neighbors.

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post #11 of 33 Old 07-18-2019, 01:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryan Statz View Post
I do appreciate the suggestion, and I truly don't mean this to be rude, but unless I was planning on removing both of my eyes so I didn't have to look at the thing...

Of the three, though, which one is the cleanest-sounding?
Yet you think the Klipsch looks good

At this level of sub I don't think you'll hear a difference between them, but my choice would be the Polk or Elac.
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post #12 of 33 Old 07-18-2019, 01:15 PM
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I had a J112 (similar to the R112-SW) and I thought it was awesome. My only issue was the amp died (seemed to be common at the time; heard it has been better). My money is on the R112-SW or the Polk (have not heard it, but have read good things about the 12" model).


I do agree that the Speedwoofer is probably the best bet; is it really that ugly [aside from the logo, it doesn't look any worse than any of the others to me]? Though what do I know, am probably not the best to gauge what looks good and what does not (I never bothered staining/painting my Mini-Marty [it still has various pencil markings and wood-glue spots!]).
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post #13 of 33 Old 07-18-2019, 02:21 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Kini62 View Post
Yet you think the Klipsch looks good

At this level of sub I don't think you'll hear a difference between them, but my choice would be the Polk or Elac.
I think it looks nicer than a lot of the others I've looked at, but I am not too keen on the black - would prefer if I can find the "walnut" finish, but that line seems to be discontinued.

I am sort of leaning toward the Polk or Elac, personally. The Elac S10EQ is beefier in the wattage department unless they're artificially inflating that spec, and seems to have a slightly lower FR (though the Polk site lists two FR's - total 25 - 180hz and lower/upper 30 - 120hz, so not sure which is the correct number).

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They all look like black boxes to me. There is nothing about any of the three you are looking at that look particularly better than the RSL (in my opinion but I realize beauty is in the eye of the beholder). I guess if I had to go on looks, the Polk looks the "least 90's". If you don't like the RSL, what about the BIC Acoustech PL200 II? It's a pretty decent budget sub.
Nah, the nicer lines don't look like black boxes at all. If I had all of the money in the world, I would probably go with Funk or Salk or Tannoy or the Klipsch Heritage line (Forte, Cornwall or Heresy). I just cannot stand glossy, black plastic.

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Originally Posted by JediMindTrick View Post
I had a J112 (similar to the R112-SW) and I thought it was awesome. My only issue was the amp died (seemed to be common at the time; heard it has been better). My money is on the R112-SW or the Polk (have not heard it, but have read good things about the 12" model).


I do agree that the Speedwoofer is probably the best bet; is it really that ugly [aside from the logo, it doesn't look any worse than any of the others to me]? Though what do I know, am probably not the best to gauge what looks good and what does not (I never bothered staining/painting my Mini-Marty [it still has various pencil markings and wood-glue spots!]).
I know that Jamo/Klipsch are virtually the same thing (at least the same parent company), but am also aware that the Jamo sub suffers from a "heart beat" issue. I got a response from their support assuring me that that issue has been addressed, but it hasn't instilled too much confidence in me. Love to look of that thing, but wish it wasn't some cruddy plastic vinyl wrap.

The Speedwoofer is pretty gross-looking to me. I get the function over form thing, but I also don't want to have to feel like I need to put a paper bag over the thing so I don't have to look at it. Like I said before, though, it doesn't have to be high-end performance because of the space/living environment, it kind of just has to feel like it's a step up from the PSW10 I have right now without looking like a dumpster fire.

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post #14 of 33 Old 07-18-2019, 02:45 PM
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Have you checked out any sealed 12" subs? They should be around the same size as a ported 10" and would have zero port-noise issues. I think JBL or Infinity have/had examples of these.

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post #15 of 33 Old 07-18-2019, 11:08 PM
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Not the best sub on the planet, but it does come in a wood grain finish:

https://www.qacoustics.com/home-thea...subwoofer.html

as does this one (good tight sub, will outperform your list, within it's limitations):

https://www.qacoustics.com/home-thea...subwoofer.html

Have you considered the under-couch options ... then you don't have to care how it looks, plus it takes up no extra space in the room?

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post #16 of 33 Old 07-19-2019, 07:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryan Statz View Post
Polk HTS 10"
Elac SQ10
Klipsch R-110SW

Thanks in advance. Also open to other suggestions that aren't SVS, Monolith, HSU, Rhythmik or Emotiva. There's no WAF, they're just bloody ugly (and outside of my budget range - $300 to $500 CDN).
OP,

I would go for either the Klipsch or the Polk. I have had them both and (I still have a R112sw at the moment) before I moved to the Monoliths and to be honest with you they are not as bad as they make them out to be. Granted they are not going to go down to the teens but RSL would not either. I would take the Klipsch all day before the RSL based on looks and performance!! Good luck with your decision.
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post #17 of 33 Old 07-19-2019, 07:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Kini62 View Post
Yet you think the Klipsch looks good

At this level of sub I don't think you'll hear a difference between them, but my choice would be the Polk or Elac.
I am sorry but the Klipsch looks great!

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post #18 of 33 Old 07-19-2019, 07:36 AM
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Aesthetics x budget > performance.. well at least he has identified his priorities, some people don't even get that far.

As said, none of the above, especially if you're watching any movies. A monolith 10 or 12 for a cheap deep clean. But to play along, if you forced me to choose among those three, I mean if we were in an dirty abandoned warehouse, empty except for us and the polk, elac and klipsch subs in front of me as I sit bound in a metal folding chair, and you're holding a gun to my head forcing me to choose... the elac assuming they're all the same price, and I don't think they are. Otherwise, the cheapest & smallest. Easier to dump mentally/financially & physically, when you realize that, you want more.


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I am sorry but the Klipsch looks great!

That they do- I use a pair of r120sw's as speaker stands, & would not part with them for the price for even that function.
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post #19 of 33 Old 07-19-2019, 11:58 AM
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I am sorry but the Klipsch looks great!

Mesmerized by the color orange ....



... yet another one!

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Mesmerized by the color orange ....



... yet another one!

Lol
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post #21 of 33 Old 07-19-2019, 01:59 PM - Thread Starter
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Budget + Aesthetics/Performance
FTFY

You have to realize that I'm limited by my space, and environment, so I don't need anything that will shake the popcorn off of the ceiling because I have neighbours to contend with, but I also don't need the thing to be able to incite a bowel movement by hitting extremely low frequencies - forgive me if I don't think that that's important. I also don't have a lot of money to work with, so mocking my financial situation with your snide, condescending snobbery isn't helpful at all. Those are the three options that are within my budget that I believe will give me the performance I need, are a step up from the PSW10 I have right now, and don't look like someone set them on fire, rolled them down the hill a few times then slapped some crappy, glossy plastic on them to try to make them look nicer. I'm also sorry that having an appreciation for a better-designed speaker upsets you so much - there's no reason why you can't have or want a good-performing speaker that looks nice that's also within a reasonable price range. If I didn't care about performance at all, I wouldn't be asking which of them had the cleanest sound, and I would've just gone out and bought one of the Jamo S810's.

The Elac is actually the least expensive right now, if you must know (it also has the smallest spatial footprint, which is kind of important given the space I'm in, and why I am not particularly interested in a 12" or more sub). I watch movies, but not nearly as often as just watching TV or playing the occasional video game, so I think you've over-estimated just how important it is for me to establish a super serious home theatre.

Also, want and need are two very different things - I simply won't need more than what those three are capable of outputting.
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post #22 of 33 Old 07-19-2019, 02:32 PM
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FTFY

You have to realize that I'm limited by my space, and environment, so I don't need anything that will shake the popcorn off of the ceiling because I have neighbours to contend with, but I also don't need the thing to be able to incite a bowel movement by hitting extremely low frequencies - forgive me if I don't think that that's important. I also don't have a lot of money to work with, so mocking my financial situation with your snide, condescending snobbery isn't helpful at all. Those are the three options that are within my budget that I believe will give me the performance I need, are a step up from the PSW10 I have right now, and don't look like someone set them on fire, rolled them down the hill a few times then slapped some crappy, glossy plastic on them to try to make them look nicer. I'm also sorry that having an appreciation for a better-designed speaker upsets you so much - there's no reason why you can't have or want a good-performing speaker that looks nice that's also within a reasonable price range. If I didn't care about performance at all, I wouldn't be asking which of them had the cleanest sound, and I would've just gone out and bought one of the Jamo S810's.

The Elac is actually the least expensive right now, if you must know (it also has the smallest spatial footprint, which is kind of important given the space I'm in, and why I am not particularly interested in a 12" or more sub). I watch movies, but not nearly as often as just watching TV or playing the occasional video game, so I think you've over-estimated just how important it is for me to establish a super serious home theatre.

Also, want and need are two very different things - I simply won't need more than what those three are capable of outputting.


Ah I wasn't mocking you man, I'm sorry my post came across that way... was just trying to be funny. And I don't judge anyone's priorities, just identify and work within them. I have some odd ones myself sometimes. But general rule around here is go bigger than what you think you need, bass is a quick deep upgrade rabbit hole.

Anyway sounds like you pretty much have it figured out now, what subs are going to work for you given your needs and constraints, and don't think there'll be a significant performance advantage/disadvantage of any among those to the others. Definitely get the one that does it for you aesthetically, & enjoy.


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post #23 of 33 Old 07-19-2019, 02:47 PM
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Beauty is really in the eye of the beholder. I do like the look of the Klipsch, but find the Polk and Elac in particular butt ugly. Wouldn't want those eyesores. Of course,in my case the person I have to get away with pleasing is my wife and she hates the look of having to see any drivers. She finds the SVS metal grill particularly ugly. So the trick is to make it blend in so I got an PSA XV15SE with base which looks less like a subwoofer and pretends to be an end table. Surprisingly, the black finish is much better to look at in person and I never have to worry about peeling or easily scratched veneer, which to me is the biggest eyesore. PSA is way above your price range and size request though, but just want to say that size does not need to be a limiting factor
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post #24 of 33 Old 07-19-2019, 02:50 PM
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The more you describe your wants and needs, the more I tend to think you will be happier with the second QA sub I rec'd, in a prior post. Assuming, of course, the aesthetics are to your liking (far different than the others options). With this choice, your bowels will be safe! I promise!

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post #25 of 33 Old 07-19-2019, 04:43 PM - Thread Starter
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Ah I wasn't mocking you man, I'm sorry my post came across that way... was just trying to be funny. And I don't judge anyone's priorities, just identify and work within them. I have some odd ones myself sometimes. But general rule around here is go bigger than what you think you need, bass is a quick deep upgrade rabbit hole.

Anyway sounds like you pretty much have it figured out now, what subs are going to work for you given your needs and constraints, and don't think there'll be a significant performance advantage/disadvantage of any among those to the others. Definitely get the one that does it for you aesthetically, & enjoy.

Yeah, sorry - I know it's difficult to judge intonation via text. I've gone with the Elac - it seemed to be the one most people had cited, plus it offered even more of an increase in performance over the Polk. With the toss-up between Klipsch/Elac - I like Elac's cleaner design better, it was less expensive, smaller physical footprint, and I'm not going to quibble over a 1hz deeper frequency response that the Klipsch offered. Even though the Elac is only 2Hz below the Polk, the wattage was double that of the Polk sub without going up to the bulky 12". I certainly understand the more-than-what-you-think-you-need philosophy - I believe that this particular sub is actually more than what I think I need.

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Originally Posted by RayGuy View Post
The more you describe your wants and needs, the more I tend to think you will be happier with the second QA sub I rec'd, in a prior post. Assuming, of course, the aesthetics are to your liking (far different than the others options). With this choice, your bowels will be safe!
I wasn't able to locate a Canadian source (amazon.ca, for example, has QA speakers, but not their subs for some reason). Prices for buying direct on their site is USD afaik, which means it's at least 30-40% more, plus duty, which brings it outside of my budget unfortunately. Otherwise, yeah... those are more in line with my personal design aesthetics, and may offer a bit of an improvement on the PSW10?

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Originally Posted by bargugl View Post
Beauty is really in the eye of the beholder. I do like the look of the Klipsch, but find the Polk and Elac in particular butt ugly. Wouldn't want those eyesores. Of course,in my case the person I have to get away with pleasing is my wife and she hates the look of having to see any drivers. She finds the SVS metal grill particularly ugly. So the trick is to make it blend in so I got an PSA XV15SE with base which looks less like a subwoofer and pretends to be an end table. Surprisingly, the black finish is much better to look at in person and I never have to worry about peeling or easily scratched veneer, which to me is the biggest eyesore. PSA is way above your price range and size request though, but just want to say that size does not need to be a limiting factor
I don't disagree with you there on the eye of the beholder. Truth be told - I don't dislike the look of the SVS SB-1000, I just wish they were available in different finishes, and lower in price in Canada. My other half doesn't care, which is nice, so I don't have to worry too much about the WAF (she really only cares if I'm happy with the electronics we have).

I'm getting increasingly tired of black electronics, I think (the Elac looks more like a 50-75% grey, which is fine) - and I say that even though I had just recently got a pair of Klipsch bookshelf speakers for my surrounds (would have easily gone with their "walnut" finish if it had been available, but 99.999999% of the time, retailers only carry the black). I occasionally see people sort of mock the "orange" in Klipsch drivers, but I think there's a sexiness/luminance to copper that you don't get with silver or gold, so I really like the look of the Klipsch speakers from that perspective.

Given the choice, though, I will always go for real wood veneer over anything, but those are often only available in higher-end lines well beyond my current financial capabilities. I can live with vinyl veneer, but you can't beat the depth/warmth of the real thing. Frankly, I was surprised that the RTi A1's/CSi A4 speakers I just got were real cherry veneer considering their price point, and I wish more manufacturers would offer that option in their lower-end lines. My next AVR will hopefully be available in silver instead of only black - if I could blow $5300CDN on an AVR right now, I would have the silver Denon AVR-X8500H.
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post #26 of 33 Old 07-20-2019, 11:17 AM
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I wasn't able to locate a Canadian source (amazon.ca, for example, has QA speakers, but not their subs for some reason). Prices for buying direct on their site is USD afaik, which means it's at least 30-40% more, plus duty, which brings it outside of my budget unfortunately. Otherwise, yeah... those are more in line with my personal design aesthetics, and may offer a bit of an improvement on the PSW10?
Yeah, forgot about that little issue. Heard of some folks who had it delivered to a U.S. address and either had it brought across the border (I guess there are companies that legally do this for a small fee) or just picked it up. In any case, good luck with the ELAC. Report back your findings, if you are so inclined.

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post #27 of 33 Old 07-20-2019, 11:36 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by RayGuy View Post
Yeah, forgot about that little issue. Heard of some folks who had it delivered to a U.S. address and either had it brought across the border (I guess there are companies that do this for a small fee) or just picked it up. In any case, good luck with the ELAC. Report back your findings, if you are so inclined.

It really sucks being not in the US sometimes for this kind of stuff. 10 years ago when our dollar was on par with the US dollar, and if I had the money, I wouldn't have hesitated ordering from the US even with the added duty.



It doesn't make sense that Canadian Amazon would have their bookshelf speakers available, but not their subs. Oh well. At any rate, I settled on the Elac, and am looking forward to hearing what it sounds like compared to the PSW10 I have right now - I think it'll be a significant difference.



Thanks for your time, and suggestions - even though I poo-poo'd your RSL Speedwoofer tip, I really do appreciate all of the advice people offer here.
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post #28 of 33 Old 07-20-2019, 11:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Ryan Statz View Post
It really sucks being not in the US sometimes for this kind of stuff. 10 years ago when our dollar was on par with the US dollar, and if I had the money, I wouldn't have hesitated ordering from the US even with the added duty.



It doesn't make sense that Canadian Amazon would have their bookshelf speakers available, but not their subs. Oh well. At any rate, I settled on the Elac, and am looking forward to hearing what it sounds like compared to the PSW10 I have right now - I think it'll be a significant difference.



Thanks for your time, and suggestions - even though I poo-poo'd your RSL Speedwoofer tip, I really do appreciate all of the advice people offer here.
T.M.I.


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post #29 of 33 Old 07-20-2019, 12:17 PM
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T.M.I.

Three mile island? Transmural myocardial infarction? Three meaningless initials?

I'm not a manager or a gamer, so I tend to avoid TLAs (three letter abbreviations).
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post #30 of 33 Old 07-20-2019, 12:39 PM
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Three mile island? Transmural myocardial infarction? Three meaningless initials?

I'm not a manager or a gamer, so I tend to avoid TLAs (three letter abbreviations).
Too Much Information.

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