The Hifi Podcast: Why You Need A Subwoofer... Or Two

Thanks to our recent partnership with REL Acoustics, the staff at The Music Room has been awash in audiophile bass of late, studying and learning more about the bottom octave and how to reproduce it well. And having no fun doing it, either. ;)

It turns out that subwoofers are not nearly as plug and play as you’d hope they’d be. There’s room modes to deal with, leakage to the outside, wasted energy to avoid, DSP to wring hands over, power considerations and more.Deciding on a subwoofer means picking a size…. and shape. Some companies offer very interesting solutions for hiding the bass maker in your listening room, while others seem to court the “bigger is better” mentality.

Clearly, the subwoofer buyer is up for some homework. There are a number of great resources online which focus on the purchasing, placement and integration of a sub, including REL Acoustics, who have a wonderful “articles” section of their website.

As testing technician here at The Music Room, and a longtime fan of subs (I’ve even DIYed six or seven at this point) I’ve certainly got some tips to share, so this week I’m reaching back into the archives of the podcast I host with PS Audio’s Darren Myers and highlighting what turned out to be one of our most popular podcasts ever: “Why You Need A Subwoofer… Or Two”.

In it, my engineer friend and I explain the science of subwoofers, define the different types and approaches, talk about drivers, talk about linearity, go into detail about DSP, touch on placement and banter about EQ and gain settings.

So it’s not really limited to just the “why” of subwoofers, despite the title, and I hope you enjoy and can take something away from it. And this weekend as you hopefully splash around and celebrate our country’s freedom, I hope you have some fun, too. Happy Fourth!