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In Reply to: RE: Want to try monitors posted by RandHat on February 22, 2017 at 12:33:56
In all of the small-smallish monitors (mostly from the UK) I have heard, a sub-woofer gives you plenty of bass, but it's not coherent with the monitor drivers. One of the great assets of small monitors is the coherence between the mids and treble. That coherence (IMHO) is lost by adding a sub-woofer, at every level of loudness.
Ha! That reminds me...
I was at a friend's apartment. He has a very nice stereo system with very high end electronics. Due to space limitations, his speakers were the little Sequerra 2-way. I was amazed at the sound quality coming from those little speakers. When I suggested that he could get rid of the boxes in the corner and use that space to put in another shelving rack, he said: "But where would I put my sub?" Ha! Then he said, "You think that bass is coming from those little speakers?" Hahahaha! He had a sub in the corner, and it was so well aurally integrated that I didn't even notice it!
Moral of the story: Driver integration and crossovers are critical.
In my experiences with subwoofer integration, stand-mounted speakers that have real bass extension down into the 40s integrate much better than speakers that only go down to 60-80 Hz. One reason is the higher crossover point. The highest I would ever run a single mono subwoofer is 60 Hz, and that's pushing the limit IMO. If I need to cover more than the bottom octave, I strongly prefer two (or four) subs run in stereo.
Another reason why the smaller speakers are harder to integrate is that they are usually engineered with a mid-bass hump with high-Q tuning and have relatively high distortion in the bass. That creates a mismatch between the character of the bass produced by the sub (lower Q, lower distortion) and the character of the bass produced by the loudspeaker. People who hear this mismatch will often say the the smaller speaker is "too fast" and the subwoofer "can't keep up", but it's not a matter of speed.
Subwoofers ruin the sound of a LS3/5A type of speaker!
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