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I am interested in adding a REL subwoofer to (what will be) my system. I plan on purchasing 2 Dynaudio Audience 72's, a Dynaudio Audience 122c, and 2 Dynaudio Audience 42w's. I've listened to them at a local dealer and was sold. They had a REL T1 setup with the above speakers and it sounded pretty good.


I also heard a REL R-205 with a pair of Dynaudio Focus 220's.


Since I'm going to go with the Audience series, would there be any benefit to going to the REL R Series? What are the main differences between the 2 subs? I lose 100 Watts and it's $200 more... I'm sure there's more to it than that. Can anyone with experience with both chime in here? Or make recommendations with one over the other?


I like to have a decent amount of bass, but not crazily boomy. A good balance between musical and good for movies is what I'm looking for in a sub - even though this doesn't necessarily follow my musical preferences below...


My listening preferences are:

70% Movies / TV

20% Music

10% Video Games


Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
There are several differences between the R and T series. The T Series uses a down-firing woofer with a front firing passive radiator where the R series have a sealed cabinet, front firing woofer. The R Series uses Class D amplifiers and the T Series uses A/B amplifiers.


In short, they are 2 completely different designs. They share similar inputs, same woofer size, (not the same woofer, just the size), similar setup methods and the REL nameplate. More than likely, your dealer had the R-205 set up in a 2-channel stereo system and the T series in a surround system. (?) Since you like more movies/ TV and a portion of use will be for gaming, I'd say go with the T Series. If you valued 2-channel stereo more, then I would suggest the R Series.


Plus, down the road it would be less expensive for you to add a couple of T-3's or T-2's to your surround channels and your center channel! Then you'd really be having fun.



When you get it home, pay close attention to the manual for setting it up. It also helps speed the process up if you have a partner. Don't be affraid to experiment with different corners of the room, either.


Have fun! Sounds like a nice system!
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by kwkshift /forum/post/14336646


There are several differences between the R and T series. The T Series uses a down-firing woofer with a front firing passive radiator where the R series have a sealed cabinet, front firing woofer. The R Series uses Class D amplifiers and the T Series uses A/B amplifiers.


In short, they are 2 completely different designs. They share similar inputs, same woofer size, (not the same woofer, just the size), similar setup methods and the REL nameplate. More than likely, your dealer had the R-205 set up in a 2-channel stereo system and the T series in a surround system. (?) Since you like more movies/ TV and a portion of use will be for gaming, I'd say go with the T Series. If you valued 2-channel stereo more, then I would suggest the R Series.


Plus, down the road it would be less expensive for you to add a couple of T-3's or T-2's to your surround channels and your center channel! Then you'd really be having fun.



When you get it home, pay close attention to the manual for setting it up. It also helps speed the process up if you have a partner. Don't be affraid to experiment with different corners of the room, either.


Have fun! Sounds like a nice system!

Kwkshift,


Thanks for responding, I was leaning toward the T1. Yes, you are exactly right, my local dealer had the T1 in a 5.1 setup and the R-205 in a 2 channel setup. Which for my soon to be 5.1 setup, makes sense. Both sounded pretty amazing to me.



I'm learning all I can about loudspeakers, subwoofers, etc... but even after reading a lot about "passive radiators" I still don't really understand them. What benefits do they provide? In contrast, what benefits do sealed sub boxes provide?


Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
The passive radiators in the T Series is basically a speaker cone with no voice coil assy. that is specifically weighted to tune the sub and allow it to have more output at a lower frequency. It's another way to "load" the driver to act as an acoustic spring. Lots of times, when listening to a subwoofer with a passive radiator, you can hear this "thut" sound emminating from the unit that colors the sound. However, in developing the T Series, they really did their homework on the crossover network and all associated electronics inside the subs to make them as efficient and accurate as possible eliminating that problem.


Basically, the R-Series will have a faster "attack" but the T Series will have more overall output.


The next time you go to your dealers store, just for fun, check out some of their bigger brothers from the B Series and the Reference Series, if they have them. The biggest model is the Studio III.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by kwkshift /forum/post/14338713


The passive radiators in the T Series is basically a speaker cone with no voice coil assy. that is specifically weighted to tune the sub and allow it to have more output at a lower frequency. It's another way to "load" the driver to act as an acoustic spring. Lots of times, when listening to a subwoofer with a passive radiator, you can hear this "thut" sound emminating from the unit that colors the sound. However, in developing the T Series, they really did their homework on the crossover network and all associated electronics inside the subs to make them as efficient and accurate as possible eliminating that problem.


Basically, the R-Series will have a faster "attack" but the T Series will have more overall output.


The next time you go to your dealers store, just for fun, check out some of their bigger brothers from the B Series and the Reference Series, if they have them. The biggest model is the Studio III.

Kwkshift,


Thanks for the great explanation, that finally makes sense.
The Wikipedia explanation and Google searches just weren't making sense to me.


I appreciate your help and plan on adding the T1 to my home theater.



I'll check out the higher models the next time I'm there. Definitely worth hearing the next level...


Thanks!
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toksin /forum/post/14340409


Kwkshift,


Thanks for the great explanation, that finally makes sense.
The Wikipedia explanation and Google searches just weren't making sense to me.


I appreciate your help and plan on adding the T1 to my home theater.



I'll check out the higher models the next time I'm there. Definitely worth hearing the next level...


Thanks!

If you really want to try to get a grip on passive radiators and ports, you should read this thread:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1044443


Even though the title is "How do Ported Subs Work", there is a lot of discussion about passive radiators.


Mark Seaton knows both ported and passive radiators like few others. He will be coming out with his BMF, which will have 3 passive radiators. The BMF is going to be one of the best subs money can buy.


People are buying hundreds and hundreds of his ported MFW-15s sold by AV123. Some people can't wait to get their hands on the BMF. It weighs >150 pounds, and is likely to cost ~$2,000.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by spyboy /forum/post/14342408



Some people can't wait to get their hands on the BMF. It weighs >150 pounds, and is likely to cost ~$2,000.

But when???
I was one of those people who couldn't wait and I gave up on that one a long, long time ago. I'm glad I did because there are too many great subs out there now to be waiting around for who knows how long. I'd be shocked to see that sub out by year's end and they've been talking about it for well over two years already.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by mojomike /forum/post/14342507


But when???
I was one of those people who couldn't wait and I gave up on that one a long, long time ago. I'm glad I did because there are too many great subs out there now to be waiting around for who knows how long. I'd be shocked to see that sub out by year's end and they've been talking about it for well over two years already.

Hi mojo:


I meant to say that "some people CAN wait to get their hands on the BMF".



I was not suggesting that the OP wait for a BMF. I was suggesting that the performance differences between a well designed passive radiator sub, a well designed ported sub, and a well designed sealed sub are not very significant.


For the sake of discussion if subs with passive radiators make a "thut" noise as our friend the REL dealer has suggested, than we can also say that ported subs produce "chuffing" noise when pushed at resonance.


Neither design is likely to make any rude noises when operated within design constraints.


More than a few people are into sealed designs. Sealed designs will produce more and more distortion when pushed, unless there is some form of limiter.


In sum, I was just trying to suggest to the OP that a well executed passive radiator design could be a prodigious performer, and that talking about "thut" noises out of context did the OP a bit of a disservice.


Perhaps Mark Seaton will drop in and update us on the progress of the BMF. Also, Mark Seaton among others has and can produce excellent subs that are sealed, ported, or have passive radiators.


I will leave you with this quote from Keith Yates an HT designer who spent 6 months testing some of the worlds best subs including the Genelec HTS6, and the Velodyne DD-18.


"If you have trouble believing that subs of different sizes, driver configurations, amplfier capabilities, cabinet makeup, countries of origin, and prices could possibly sound alike on challenging material, just take them outside, away from walls and the standing waves they create, match the levels, and listen for yourself."
 

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I still want to see the BMF come to market even if I personally no longer have a need for it. I enjoy watching great subwoofers being born and I'm sure that when if finally comes, it's going to be really good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #31 ·
No matter what design of speaker or subwoofer is used, there will always be some sort of compromise. Performance? Size? Cost? Something has to give. With all the brilliant minds in this industry, if there was a way to have a subwoofer perform with ruler-flat frequency response @ 125dB, with the physical size of a Bose jewel cube for $99, every other manufacturer would be out of business.


Agreed that if anything is used within its design constraints it should perform properly. However, from time to time, I'm sure we're all guilty of pushing some sort of product or service beyond its design constraints.


This reminds me of the race car-building world. Nitrous, superchargers, turbos or N/A engines all have their pros and cons. Some guys are diehard Nitrous junkies, while others swear by forced induction and some guys experiment with all combinations to find what works best for them.


I did not say "every other passive radiator design on the planet". I said "lots of times". I'm sure we can all agree that it would be quite easy to throw a plate amp, some sort of box, a woofer and a passive radiator together all ordered from Madisound and make it work for cheap. But how would it really perform?


Welcome to the world of compromise.
 

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My main theater room is about 3500 cubic feet - which includes a vaulted ceiling running from 8 feet to 16 feet. The high end of the room opens on one end to a 2-story hallway as well as a second story balcony. I am running a set of bi-amped Kappa 8's, which are about 17 years old, as the mains. 75% music / 25% home theater.


I auditioned a B1 - not in my home - seemed like too much; I also auditioned a B3 - it came up a bit short for my taste. So, that's why I am thinking of a B2.


Alternatively I am thinking of an Outlaw LFM-1 EX for a whole lot less money or a SVS 20-39 Plus - still a lot less than the B2 but more than the Outlaw sub. I have had several folks tell me to get the cylindrical SVS sub, and I will not be disappointed.


Seeking input and advice.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by rasmaxwell /forum/post/14375768


My main theater room is about 3500 cubic feet - which includes a vaulted ceiling running from 8 feet to 16 feet. The high end of the room opens on one end to a 2-story hallway as well as a second story balcony. I am running a set of bi-amped Kappa 8's, which are about 17 years old, as the mains. 75% music / 25% home theater.


I auditioned a B1 - not in my home - seemed like too much; I also auditioned a B3 - it came up a bit short for my taste. So, that's why I am thinking of a B2.


Alternatively I am thinking of an Outlaw LFM-1 EX for a whole lot less money or a SVS 20-39 Plus - still a lot less than the B2 but more than the Outlaw sub. I have had several folks tell me to get the cylindrical SVS sub, and I will not be disappointed.


Seeking input and advice.

The cylinder subs take up less floor space, that's the main difference. If you are open to suggestions, there are both box subs and cylinder subs that should satisfy you. Some people don't mind a 39 inch cylinder, others prefer a shorter box sub. Even the $600 SVS PB-12 NSD has gotten good reviews with its new driver and amp. The PB-12 NSD would at least equal the Outlaw LFM-1EX. Given the size of your room the 20-39PC Plus seems like a good way to go. Have you spoken to anyone at SVS? They won't oversell you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #34 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by rasmaxwell /forum/post/14375768


My main theater room is about 3500 cubic feet - which includes a vaulted ceiling running from 8 feet to 16 feet. The high end of the room opens on one end to a 2-story hallway as well as a second story balcony. I am running a set of bi-amped Kappa 8's, which are about 17 years old, as the mains. 75% music / 25% home theater.


I auditioned a B1 - not in my home - seemed like too much; I also auditioned a B3 - it came up a bit short for my taste. So, that's why I am thinking of a B2.


Alternatively I am thinking of an Outlaw LFM-1 EX for a whole lot less money or a SVS 20-39 Plus - still a lot less than the B2 but more than the Outlaw sub. I have had several folks tell me to get the cylindrical SVS sub, and I will not be disappointed.


Seeking input and advice.

When you auditioned the B1 and the B3, were they in the same room, (Or similar sized rooms)? If not, that coupled with something as simple as different volume settings could change the outcome. For example, maybe the B3 just needed another click or 2 on the volume knob. (?)


Can your local REL dealer demo one or more units in your home for you? That may help you make your decision. What's nice is that Rel's have always been known for seamless integration to mains which is one reason they are preferred by so many 2-channel folk. That, plus the ability to easily add more of them as your system grows and absolute top-notch build quality make them great all-around performers.


Speak to your dealer and see if maybe he could swing by and demo them in your home. It should be fun and you may find that a B3 will do just fine.
 

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I had a demo of the B1 and B3 in the same room at my local dealer - and in the same physical position within the room, as I asked for such.


The dealer told me that he had just attended a Sumiko training class, but it appeared that he had trouble dialing in both of the subs. Neither sounded particularly impressive with either music or movies. I also listened to the R505, and to me it sounded considerably looser and less clean than either the B1 or the B3. Did not like it at all. I am not looking for slam with a sub, but I do want depth and clarity with music, as well as some sonic authority with a 5.1 DTS movie sound track. We were using an Integra 8.8 to drive some mid size Focals for the mains. The room was 14x14 and well damped with a sofa as well in the room center about 8 feet back from the sub in the left corner of the room out about 2 feet from the back wall. Thinking that the over square, damped room did not help.


With a B2 going for 2 large plus, I am having some trouble justifying the performance and quality differential versus say a SVS PB12 Plus, 20-39 Plus or an Outlaw LFM-1 EX.


FYI - thinking of replacing my mains with Ohm Walsh 200 MKIII's. I have the Ohm Micro Walsh Talls in my small den - unbelievably good sound! I heard nothing that could touch them under 2 large per pair.
 

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Discussion Starter · #36 ·
It sounds as though there was a problem with the setup of the units, rather than the units, themselves. I'll be the first to admit that the proper setup on these can be picky, so perhaps they just weren't dialed in properly. Each room can be different. But, 2' out from the corner sounds a bit too far imo. Also, as the manual suggests, the orientation of the sub can also have an impact on the performance. IMO, to properly demo both subs in the same room, in the same corner of that room, 2 separate setups should have been performed, which can take some time switching from sub A to sub B. Rather than if both subs were sitting side-by-side and A-B switching between them. How were they demo'd to you?
 

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The B1 was placed in the corner and supposedly dialed in. The B1 was then disconnected and moved to a rear corner of the room. The B3 was put in its place and supposedly dialed in. Ditto for the R505. The R505 was the weak sister by a good margin - some of which was probably due to the not-so-good Class D amp.


I provided feedback to the dealer rep as he was trying to dial it in.


Assuming that the B2 is dialed in correctly - I have high expectations for a $2k+ sub. Is this sub going to meet my expectations for great music and authoritative DTS playback? That is literally the $2K question.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by rasmaxwell /forum/post/14380778


The B1 was placed in the corner and supposedly dialed in. The B1 was then disconnected and moved to a rear corner of the room. The B3 was put in its place and supposedly dialed in. Ditto for the R505. The R505 was the weak sister by a good margin - some of which was probably due to the not-so-good Class D amp.


I provided feedback to the dealer rep as he was trying to dial it in.


Assuming that the B2 is dialed in correctly - I have high expectations for a $2k+ sub. Is this sub going to meet my expectations for great music and authoritative DTS playback? That is literally the $2K question.

You have every right to have high expectations at over 2K. There are lots of good choices. With that kind of budget, I would be looking at the J L Audio F 112. People with extensive experience with a variety of subs have found the F 112 to be superior. Flexibility in blending in with a wide variety of mains seems to be a strong point of the F 112.
 

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Discussion Starter · #39 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by rasmaxwell /forum/post/14380778


The B1 was placed in the corner and supposedly dialed in. The B1 was then disconnected and moved to a rear corner of the room. The B3 was put in its place and supposedly dialed in. Ditto for the R505. The R505 was the weak sister by a good margin - some of which was probably due to the not-so-good Class D amp.


I provided feedback to the dealer rep as he was trying to dial it in.


Assuming that the B2 is dialed in correctly - I have high expectations for a $2k+ sub. Is this sub going to meet my expectations for great music and authoritative DTS playback? That is literally the $2K question.

Ok...I'd see if the dealer could schedule an in-home demo for you. Regardless of which manufacturer you decide to go with, toys in this price range should perform well. The problem with your dealers demo could have even been a problem with how the room was constructed, (who knows?). Which, no matter what sub was running in there, it could have given poor results. Having it setup at your home with your gear would be the most realistic test drive possible.
 

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Thanks for everyone's feedback. I have decided to turn away from the potential purchase of an REL B2. When you are looking at subs north of $2k, the dealer should nail the demo and know how to dial in a sub in their own listening room. The dealer should also offer an in-home demo without the customer asking for such, if the customer is serious about a potential, big bucks sub purchase.


Lastly, I reached my limit on high price coupled with "made in China" for a premium AV brand. Seriously, a large number of premium AV brands are making very healthy margins by using "made in China", and I for one am becoming disgusted with this trend. If this is the path that the AV brands want to follow, then your prices are out of line. I have noticed a significant decline in the build quality (and weight of AVR components in particular) since about 2001. AVR brands putting out gear with "issues" is a whole 'nother topic.
 
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