Being passionate about hi-fi, we are familiar with the tips and tricks when it comes to setting up your sound system. Integrating a hi-fi system within your home is sometimes met with a degree of compromise; the shape and size of the listening room, along with loudspeaker placement can present challenges, both visually and acoustically. Home Media can help you make the most of the space and equipment you have so that your hi-fi system can reach its full potential in performance and acoustic abilities.
When care and attention is applied to system setup, the enjoyment of listening to music will be a more immersive experience. This is exactly what the Home Media team achieved during a visit to a Kent-based customer recently…
Having attended our in-store event with REL Acoustics back in May, the customer was impressed by the new T/x series and decided to add a pair of REL T/9x Subwoofers to his own system, which comprised of a pair of KEF Reference 1 Stand Mount Speakers and a Chord Electronics CPM 3350 Integrated Amplifier, situated in a long and narrow listening room.
Upon our arrival, we first set about listening to how the current system sounded and understanding the limitations of the room. It was evident that the sound stage lacked the depth and channel separation expected of these fine audio products. We began altering the speaker positioning, to create a centre image between the speakers. Some experimentation with the rear ports highlighted the existence of bloom with bass and lower midrange frequencies.
By restricting the air flow from the rear firing ports, voices and instrumentation became clearer and the depth of the sound stage between the speakers increased. The system was now painting a picture of a band performing at our feet and with space between the musicans. As a result of restricting airflow from the speaker ports, bass weight had reduced, and this is where the REL T/9x’s form a key role within the foundation of the system.
Once unpacked, we positioned one T/9x in a corner behind the left speaker and the second behind the right speaker. They were angled so that they were facing the opposite rear corner of the room (left subwoofer firing towards rear right corner). In order to seamlessly integrate a REL Acoustic subwoofer with a hi-fi system, there are four key procedures to undertake: Phase, frequency crossover, positioning and gain (output).
With attention to detail applied to the subwoofer setup, bass extension with speed and agility was now present within the customer’s system. Modern REL subwoofers possess a neutrality, meaning that they integrate with speakers and do not stand out as a separate component.
With the presence of the REL T/9x’s, the depth of the sound stage deepened, making the presence of voices and instruments within the music sounding more present and real than ever. Here is what the wonderful customer had to say about the set up:
“First, thanks again for setting up my speakers and sub-woofers last week – the system truly is sounding better than ever. I have tried tweaking the level of the RELs slightly, but quite quickly went back to your setting. Out of curiosity mainly, I took the “plugs” out of the Ref 1 ports – and the sound became muddy and the soundstage collapsed – so they quickly went back in! Some music does sound a little bright, but I’m reaching the conclusion it is on the record or CD; most music sounds well balanced. I think you got the set-up pretty much spot on.”
Here at Home Media, we have been ‘banging the drum’ regarding the integration of REL subwoofers with two channel systems for almost twenty years, and it might just be the most cost-effective upgrade to your system available… For help setting up your hi-fi system or advice on what piece of equipment your existing system would benefit from, just give us a call on 01622 676703!
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