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Subwoofer to go w/Martin Logans

790 Views 18 Replies 16 Participants Last post by  adidadi

I have the following equipment:

Front speakers: Martin Logan ReQuest

Center channel: Martin Logan Logos

Rear speakers: Martin Logan Aerius II

Preamp/sound processor: Theta Digital CasaNova

Amp: Proceed AMP-5

Subwoofer: MUSE

I have just built a dedicated home theater room, and I believe the Muse will be lacking in oomph and power for this room.

Does anyone have any suggestions for subwoofer(s) to match this system? I will be watching a lot of movies in DD and DTS, but I also enjoy 2-channel music. Currently I just run the ReQuests full range for 2-channel, but I am open to suggestions.

Thank you in advance.

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I would also second the vote for Velodyne and perhaps REL. But, consider subs by: Dynaudio 10 inch or Contour series, Sunfire and Earthquake. The Earthqake sub really has big punch and may be too much depending upon room, acoustics and music you listen to.

Happy shopping,

I'm suprized with all the Aerial Acoustics fans on this forum no-one has suggested my favorite sub to mate with Martin Logans, the Aerial Acoustics SW-12. This sub is extremely clean and deep with plenty of horsepower. In fact, a pair of these subwoofers mated to a pair of ReQuests(or Prodigy's even better) result in a system which will make anyone who has heard the Statements set up properly crack a smile at how close this comes to the big boys.

One of the most significant benefits I have found with the SW-12 is it's ability to mate to main speakers without sounding "muddied" or "sloppy". The 135 lb. enclosure, healthy amplifier, and lack of compression circuitry are heavily responsible for these characteristics. At minimum, give one a listen.

Mark Seaton
Check out the Titan II, it is a good match for planar speakers. Not oddles of power but it's extremely fast and clean. http://www.audioc.com/speakers/TitanII/Titan2fr.htm

Try the Genesis subwoofer. It has two 12" titanium woofers in a compact enclosure that can be used in a bipolar fashion, which makes them a good match for the Martin Logans. The price is just $1,500. which is quite reasonable from a company noted for very high priced speakers.

Go listen to the Paradigm Reference Servo-15... it's the best Paradigm speaker I've ever heard. I preferred it (sonically) over many of its higher priced competitors.


I would recommend the Velodyne servo controlled subs.

My two ULD-18's integrate very well with my Monoliths. Very musical.


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i have the requests/logos paired with a sunfire true sub signature, makes for a great combination once you have it well adjusted (but that should be relatively easy with the casanova)
I would second the suggestion for the Paradigm Servo-15. Take the drive over to Stereo Trader Outlet in Jenkintown, PA http://www.tsto.com and get a demo. They also sell Paradigm "blems" for substantial discounts. Small store...big on service. You can also stop off at Soundex just off of the Willow Grove T.P exchange.

Impala Bob http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/biggrin.gif
I would second the Titan II recommendation. I use a Titan mated to my magnepans and have been very pleased with the results. The Titan II has fixed many of the inadequacies of the original Titan (crossover frequencies and output) while retaining its virtues (excellent looks and tight, deep bass). Plus, you get a 30 day no risk in-home trial. Call Mike Dzerko at www.audioc.com, he's very good to talk to. You might also consider VMPS ( www.vmpsaudio.com I think), however I don't have personal experience with this sub.
I would have to go with the others that say the Paradigm Servo 15 is the way to go. I have had excellent results mating the Paradigm with my Martin Logan Aerius and Cinema. This sub is very fast and will keep up with the ESLs. I have have also trie the Velodyne 1500. It was very powerful and had great extension but did not seem to keep up with the ESLs

I had a Casablanaca, with Requests for front and rear, logos center. Best sub I've ever heard, which I bought, is the Bag End 18" sub. Beats anything for the money and almost anything above. Studios use these same subs in a Bag End Elf system which includes a crossover. Only cinema subs (industrial types) or Krell, Wilson will top this sub.

It is POWERFUL and musical. Great sub. Love it. Now I use it with my Dyn's and Levinson and Lexicon gear. Top notch performance.


Silence is overrated!
Unfortunately, I don't think the Rel is much of a performer for HT. Nor do I think that the Bag end is much either. It boasts alot but doesn't give any performance. Try www.svsubwoofers.com

Tom the co-owner and designer was fed up w/ the lackluster performance of all of the subwoofers out there so he built his killer tower subs. I highly doubt you'll find anything better even in the Aerial ranks.

Have you heard the 18" Bag End?

The svs does not look very impressive according to diagrams, also stating 190 watts. You say the Bag End boasts plenty but does not perform.

My dedicated theatre structure out back shakes beyond belief. I have it set to less then 1/4 and it is so tight, powerful and flat out violent when it needs to be. How could you begin to say it does not perform. It blows the socks off of my other subs: Velodyne 15" (2 of them at the same time), Sunfire signature, and any others I've heard except the Krell and Wilson.


Silence is overrated!
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Have you heard the 18" Bag End? <<<

I have, I spent >$1000 on an INFRA a couple years ago. Nice unit...ended up using it as a amp stand before I sold it for what I thought it was worth...$350 to a good friend.

Sealed box, off the shelf emminence driver...with crappy accordian surround. You're looking at about 4.5mm of linear Xmax from the driver, a resonant freq. of about 70hz for the entire thing. This means, the *elf* stuff has to EQ the signal 12dB/octave starting at 70hz to maintain relatively flat response <70hz. Ok, so that's about 20dB of EQ at 20hz...talk about castrating the amp headroom !

KEELE reviewed the INFRA for audio a while back...basically, you'd need 4 INFRAs to macth the clean output of a single HSU TN20.

Is the INFRA an *ok* subwoofer for low level music? Yes.

Can the INFRA kick >35hz? Yes.

Does the INFRA have the capability to produce the first octave(16-32hz) loudly and cleanly?....absolutely not.

>>>The svs does not look very impressive according to diagrams,<<<

good thing bagend has such impressive diagrams then...

>>> also stating 190 watts. You say the Bag End boasts plenty but does not perform.<<<

190w, correct. More than enough to perform well, I can assure.

>>>My dedicated theatre structure out back shakes beyond belief. I have it set to less then 1/4 and it is so tight, powerful and flat out violent when it needs to be. How could you begin to say it does not perform.<<<

The INFRA isn't capable of producing anything <32-35hz loudly and cleanly. This is a well documented fact...dictated by it's outdated *elf* electronics, and it's off the shelf driver.

>>> It blows the socks off of my other subs: Velodyne 15" (2 of them at the same time), Sunfire signature, and any others I've heard except the Krell and Wilson.<<<

There's no point in debating personal preference...assuming the VEL 15s were operating correctly, and calibrate/placed for optimal performance...your conclusion seems to indicate that you have a preference for a lot of distortion with your low bass. That's your choice, it's a free country. Which model VELs...F1500 or FSR/HGS 15s?


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The Aerial subs are very good and i would suggest you audition a pair. You can wire the .1 info as follows:

First to get the mains working bring the processor left channel out into the left side SW12 on the line in. Set the xover at say 70. Then set the high pass xover at a bit less, say 65. next take the high pass out into the amp for the front left channel. Take the speaker wire from the amp to the left front speaker.

Do the same to the right side. This will give you the fronts wired in tandem with the subs.

Then take another interconnect from your .1 out into the remaining line in on the left SW12 (you only used one above). Then take an interconnect from the LINE OUT (not high pass but line out) and run it into the open LINE IN on the right hand SW12.

You will probably have to fiddle around with the xover in your processor for thr .1 channel. I have found that some movies with this setup cause too much bass and by changing the xover downward it cuts some out and does not overload the subs.

I think these subs are very good.


Chuck Traywick

Kitty Hawk, NC
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Have you heard the 18" Bag End?
Sure have as well as a host of other 18" subs and my puny 12" M&K outdoes them. The $700 Paradigm PW2200 sounded better in fact. The Bag End was nothing but a bag of air and unfufilled promises. The Velo was the best and easily outguns my sub as well as the Paradigm. That is the only 18" that is worth a hoot IMHO.
Andrew, I'm using the REL storm with Martin Logan Sequel II's, A Logos center, and Scripts for surrounds. I guarantee you that if you audition the Rel storm III in your system, you'll keep it! This sub blends in so nicely with the Logans. If you listen to 2 channel like most of us do, you'll be amazed! I'm sure the SVS subs are good, but for blending in with the rest of your system, and also sounding fast, tight, and accurate enough said. I'm using mine in 22x15 room and it shakes plenty for movies! Good luck
This goes to show that everyone in audio is chasing their tail. One of you preferred the Volodyne 15" to the Bag End 18"

I owned 2 F15 Velodynes at the same time, and the Bag end is so much better. But yet you feel the need to tell me I am hearing distortion, but don't know any better. Hey, It just sounds better. What can I say.

An installer friend of mine who also sells Revel, and other high end subs, will always include Bag End as a default. Why, because they perform.

By the way, to add to my favorite bass, the Revel sub sounded great.

So your opinions are not: "Audio Truth". The Bag End may have been too powerful for your size room, or whatever the reason may have been. This sub is also pushed by Christopher Hansen and many other high end stores who could gouge the customer for more money, but less perfomance.

Bag End rocks. Litterally.


Silence is overrated!
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