Should you buy a subwoofer from the same company that manufactured your speakers?

One of the questions that people find themselves asking when they go out to look for new equipment in the stores is if I’m buying and a complete set of speakers, shouldn’t I just get the quote matching subwoofer from that manufacturer. And that the presumption is understandable. The brands are identical.

How could they not be the ideal match? And the answer to that question actually lies in the practical realities for many of these loudspeaker manufacturers. They are often working with diminished staff content, right? They used to have 15 full-time engineers. Over the years that’s been whittled down to two or three.

And so what inevitably winds up happening, and I’m not making this up. This is directly from the CEO of one of the best Scandinavian speaker brands out there. And I asked him about it. He said, honestly, when we’re in the field, we quietly recommend your products. So well, that’s lovely, but why, why do you do that?

He said, honestly, our subwoofers. We do first the reference, right? So my very best engineers handle that and they spend maybe two years developing the new reference line. By the time that’s done, the mid-level line has to be refreshed. So they’re moving on to that. And in that line, there’s five or six models.

So again, this is two years of very hard work going on. In the meantime, what winds up happening is somebody goes, um, our subwoofers are nine years old. We need to do something new. So the most junior engineer gets assigned to do the sub offers and it winds up not being a good fit. Now, there are some notable exceptions to that.

There are one or two companies that are actually really trying hard to do an occasional piece here and there. But as a general rule, having stuff that comes from the same manufacturer does not in fact confer what you think it does. The RELs are really designed from the get-go to be uniquely neutral. We’re not favoring one brand over another.

The way that we design our filter sets the speed of our drivers, the way the cabinets are so inert and quiet means that we can pair up perfectly with virtually any speaker on the planet, depending on what is. We have solutions at every point, which is by the way, why we have lines at a certain price point, why we offer a T/5 a seven and a nine X, right.

That, that allows us to cover huge spread in speaker brands. That would be up to probably five to $7,000 a pair. Down to around a thousand dollars a pair. So that’s a lovely spread there. The S’s are designed to go with speakers in the two to 10,000, maybe even 12, $14,000 spread. And then as we get into our references, we get right on up to 120, $150,000, $200,000 a pair, depending on what you’re doing, we can do six packs.

For example, we can do line arrays. So the solutions that we offer are uniquely neutral. They are not gender specific. They don’t tend to favor one type of speaker over another. They’re very easy to set up and they’re really designed by the best we use exactly the same team of engineers and designers that we do for our big reference products on a little Tzero MKIII at a 10th the price that’s really the, the explanation.

It comes down to the human factor, not the branding.

December 30, 2021 - Posted in: News