standmounters (plus sub) vs floorstanders [Archive] - Audio & Video Forums


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06-07-2010, 06:31 AM
With so many speaker types to choose from these days(standmount/floorstanding/sat&sub/active/electrostatic/flat panel/transmission line etc) its a minefield out there...

How is the discerning audio lover supposed to select a speaker type that typifies the qualities he/she desires from his/her music? The answer is simple: to listen. All these designs rely on one thing only to get them off the shelves and into people's homes: a character. The 'personality' of a speaker system is the defining factor in the purchase of a new pair of boxes for the front room. And as many audio folk believe (and quite rightly) the humble speaker is the one component above all others that colours the sound of a system to the greatest degree.

I have owned a great many speakers of wildly varying sizes, types and configurations but to achieve the balance I crave I would have to go with standmounted speakers plus a sub. I find the punchiness, detail and speed of a decent pair of standmounters (such as monitor audio gs10's/kef xq1's/b&w 685 etc) coupled with the depth of a mid range sub (I love the tweakability of the rel stampede) an irresistible combination.

It all depends on the genres of music we listen to the most, but for me this configuration provides incredible exhilaration and a scale and speed that I have yet to come across even from the costliest floorstanders. I find I achieve the best results wiring the sub with a neutrik cable directly from my amplifier's binding posts so it receives the same signal as the fronts. This way the 'roll off' is directed straight to the sub and with a little tweaking I can integrate it in such a way that if I shut my eyes it seems as if I'm defying the laws of physics by achieving massive bass from a pair of tiny boxes.

Has anyone tested this setup??
If you like music fast, thrilling and dynamic I'd recommend it in a heartbeat....!!

JoeE SP9
06-07-2010, 05:30 PM
That's the connection REL recommends. It seems to work well for their subs. IME the type of connection depends on many factors. Some setups sound better using the line level inputs on the sub. Some sound better using a bandwidth limited signal to the main speakers. This is probably the way to go if you have small mains with limited low frequency extension. Unfortunately not all subs with built in amps/crossovers have a high pass function. Most just pass a full range signal to the mains. With mains that have full or nearly full range output this can make the integration between mains and sub somewhat difficult.
Even when successful integration has been achieved 2 subs will always sound better than one. Asymmetrically placing two will lessen the effect of room nodes. Plus, you'll get better bass.

06-07-2010, 09:19 PM
Using a stand mount with a sub 'could' lead to a lift in the bass where the sub starts coming in. I've found that the ideal configuration that works for me is to seal the duct of the stand mount speakers. This converts it to a sealed box with 12dB/octave roll off. In my case the sealed duct raises the -3dB frequency to about 70Hz and it's Q goes up to 1.1 ( underdamped). The 12dB/octave electronic crossover is designed to match this and give an overall Linkwitz/Riley 24dB per octave response. The sub LPF rolloff is 24dB per octave close to this frequency.
When I do it this way I get very tight bass with extension. You are right about not wanting to loose the slam of the satellites. Done this way you loose none of it.

I still use a single sub ( Peerless XLS 12 inch). The second driver is there but has no box yet !

06-11-2010, 03:38 PM
Before I upgraded to ESLs, my stand mount/sub configuration sounded better with champagne corks sealing the ports of the stand mounted speakers, leading to a lot of raised eyebrows from visitors. The bass seemed a lot more controlled and pleasant too. Glad to know when others confirm this " madness " is a means of achieving better audio and not accepting the sound lamely!