The Practically Perfect REL
Hi, I’m John Hunter. I’m the head designer for REL. We’re here to introduce you to not only the new T/x range, but specifically this the 7/x falls between the T/9x and the T/5x. Think of mama bear perfect here, and what we are using is an active 8 inch driver, and down firing 10 inch passive.
The passive gives you that extremely low floor rumble. The active gives you the quick agile tuneful stuff that we need in bass to be accurate and musically relevant. It’s driven by a 200 watt amplifier with completely new limiters. And the limiters allow us to extract about 40 to 50 Watts more on peaks and very loud passages than the outgoing that used exactly the same model amplifier. So, we’re getting more from the same kit as we get better as designers and engineers. This is where many people have their very first experience with REL.
It’s incredibly critical to us that you get so much for so little. Everything is tremendous on this piece. We even offer, for the entire range, an optional wireless system called arrow, and it literally plugs in the back. Couldn’t be easier to use. It doesn’t require you to go download an app from the apple store or from Google. It’s literally plug in, snap, a couple of switches and you’re done. We’re really proud of the T/x range and this is right there in the middle of it, doing everything you would want a sub to do. So, every time I start a project I start with the drivers.Mentors have taught me over the years that if we don’t get the drivers perfect. Not good, perfect.
You’ll be chasing your tail all through the project. This is a very long stroke, 8 inch active driver. It’s very light. We use a special version of pressed pulp for an incredibly lightweight cone and we stiffen it with a very thin, we’re talking five grams of mass for the dust cap stiffener here in the center. The center caps are critical to not only the stiffness, but also how it damps the main cone. We don’t want echoes to keep rippling, false echoes, to keep rippling across the cone.
So, it’s incredibly important to us that we wind up with a composite that’s very quiet and very pistonic. We had to engineer a completely new suspension to this because the outgoing model was a little soft for using a larger cabinet volume. What we’ve got here is less back pressure and a bigger cabinet. And what that does is it allows us to use much different suspensions. And at this point, we’re moving from say a well-tuned family sedan over to something much more like a sports car racing suspension on this piece.
It’s much stiffer. The spider does a better job of keeping very long travel concentric. So, your voice coil is moving back and forth even further than on the last generation. We had to do the same kinds of things to the passive radiator. Passive honestly, took me longer to get right than the active. So, we worked on every little facet of the drivers. The net result is they are faster, louder, and they have more excursion for the same amount of power. They’re just more efficient in every mechanical sense of the word and they sound better as a result.
So, our amplifiers are incredibly important, obviously they produce the power, but more importantly, they’re also responsible for controlling the drivers. It does us no good if a driver has excursion outward and loses the plot because the amplifier doesn’t have a stiff high current power supply. This is a real 200 watt mono block power amplifier. I stress that because there’s a. It’s been kind of a numerical inflation of numbers in the subwoofer came over the last 10 years.
And while power is a good thing, and more power is an even better thing. It’s got to be really high-quality power. We also have our famous high-level connection. The high level of connection is responsible for actually taking the signal off of your main power amplifier. So, if you’ve got a receiver, the two channels that are feeding off to your left and right main speakers. We take that and without borrowing any power from it at all, we take that into our piece, and it allows us to sound exactly like your speakers.
It’s really, really important to understand this. It’s critical that whatever you have, if you have a medium-priced receiver that’s great. No problem. Your whole system sounds like that and that will condition this.
REL are justly known for our cabinets and how beautiful they are. We use a different spray technique than most people. So, we use a double coat. When we go to sand and spray, each coat has one first, perfectly horizontally, and then immediately after that’s done you turn the spray gun, and you shoot vertically.
What that does is it evens out the spray pattern and you get incredibly flat consistent layers of paint. And at the end, it’s what allows us to then buff them out by hand and create this beautiful mirror like finish on these. The top badge on these things is incredibly thick because that’s what we use to actually damp the final little high-frequency peak in the middle of this piece. These are solid billet aluminum. It comes out a 4 inch bar stock and we mill it down to this. They’re incredibly heavy and incredibly dense. And it’s part of the Sonic tuning of this piece.
So in conclusion, the TX range is really designed to give the most, for the least. It’s got all of the connectivity suites, everything that’s used on our larger models. It’s got cabinet form, function and finish that is incredible. The drivers have had every little detail sweated over them. Right down to getting the feet orientation perfect. This is as much as we know how to deliver for as little cost as possible.