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JL Audio Ahead of the Curve

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  #11  
Old 05-21-2019, 11:53 AM
Pampero Pampero is offline
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^ I agree. It isn't common to achieve a good crossover geometry when drivers overlap in unintended ways. I can see how adding low frequency energy below the useable response range of a speaker's woofer(s) could be accomplished in a relatively seamless manner but that would entail carefully matching the crossover's low pass, level and phase response at a point where the main speakers have no useful output. As soon as you opt for a knee that occurs above the natural roll off of the main speaker you start to have unintended/uncontrolled interactions between the two devices. This will result in additional artifacts that will most likely result in bloat, cancellations and time displacements or a hole in the response curve that defies solution without additional filtering. One may prefer the added warmth of a subwoofer when matched to the mains using only the low pass in the sub, but it is not likely to be a very accurate pairing. If a good quality crossover like the CR1 is employed, the system will be much better aligned than it would be without. It's that simple. This not to mention how much easier it is to achieve proper level and phase adjustments when you have all the tools you need and have the freedom to select the best point rather than one dictated by the mechanical limitations of the system.

It may be that one will be completely satisfied adding a touch of LF reinforcement below the roll off of his primary speakers thereby saving the cash for something else, but the freedom a proper crossover gives the user to balance the sound precisely isn't often achievable using just the low pass on a powerful sub such as a Fathom. The more low frequency energy your main speakers produce, the harder the job will be to accomplish without the proper tools. 802D3s probably fall into that category. I would think they have very good native LF extension. This lends even greater complexity to creating a blend that takes advantage of the system's full capabilities. One will have many fewer options in selecting the crossover point between the two devices which also limits the ability to experiment with varying crossover frequencies.

Not having a crossover in a design that requires one equals energy in the wrong places, not enough where needed, unwanted phase/time and frequency response artifacts, a long shopping list of potential problems.

I think not including the high pass element as a standard feature in the sub itself is the Fathom's biggest disadvantage compared to subs that include a true crossover section in the standard package. It's a bit confusing because JL includes just such a capability in their E series "economy" subs but don't include it in the higher cost Fathom series. It caused me some moments of doubt when looking for subs but I settled on the JL's anyway for their other virtues. Yet I can agree with the advice to try the Fathom without a crossover first to see if you can satisfy yourself without going to the added expense. If you're anything like me though, you will end up with a crossover and be glad you did.

I have 2 F113/V2 and a CR1 mated to a decidedly full range pair of Salon 2s and can link you to my experience which I detailed on the forum some time ago but that probably isn't necessary. Suffice to say it took the crossover to make my package provide the tight and extended bass it now produces. Getting great bass in a typical home environment seems to take it all: careful placement, precise matching of elements, some understanding of small space acoustics and the concurrent requirement for planned treatment that makes the difference in the finished product.
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Last edited by Pampero; 05-21-2019 at 12:48 PM.
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  #12  
Old 05-21-2019, 01:49 PM
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W9TR W9TR is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wayne View Post
I strongly disagree with those recommending to run your main speakers full range without a crossover. The issue is that its very difficult if not impossible to get the phase to match at every frequency where the main speakers and and sub overlap without a crossover. No you don't need a CR-1 but you do need a crossover if you hope to get a flattish overall frequency response.



I used an Ashley crossover before upgrading to a Cr-1 and it worked fine.


I’m with you Wayne.

But I wonder why companies like REL have been so successful building their business and reputation on running mains full range and adding the sub with a speaker level connection.
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  #13  
Old 05-21-2019, 02:28 PM
IM3CPO IM3CPO is offline
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Originally Posted by W9TR View Post
But I wonder why companies like REL have been so successful building their business and reputation on running mains full range and adding the sub with a speaker level connection.
If you run speaker level connections to your sub, then your main speakers would be controlled by the crossover on the sub. So while you would technically configure your main speakers to be full range (via your pre-amp), in execution they wouldnt be running full range.
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Old 05-21-2019, 03:33 PM
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Default Need a CR-1?

No so - REL just parallels the speaker outputs on your power amp - no crossover involved with your mains. Of course the sub has its internal low pass crossover.
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Last edited by W9TR; 05-21-2019 at 03:37 PM.
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  #15  
Old 05-21-2019, 03:48 PM
IM3CPO IM3CPO is offline
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Originally Posted by W9TR View Post
No so - REL just parallels the speaker outputs on your power amp - no crossover involved with your mains. Of course the sub has its internal low pass crossover.
Ahh, I misunderstood the config here... My assumption was the REL sub had speaker wire level input and outputs...

So yes, please disregard my statement above!!!
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Old 05-21-2019, 04:54 PM
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Some subs do have speaker level ins and outs. I never understood how those worked unless the satellite (main) speakers were designed to operate with that specific sub.
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  #17  
Old 05-22-2019, 01:29 PM
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This is getting much more expensive and complicated than I initially thought..... I suspect that I should have purchased the 800D3 instead of the 802D3 for the additional low end..
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Old 05-22-2019, 01:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mike175gr View Post
This is getting much more expensive and complicated than I initially thought..... I suspect that I should have purchased the 800D3 instead of the 802D3 for the additional low end..
RELs are easy to integrate, no crossover orbother electronics necessary. If you need to stay with the 802D3s, a fine speaker, RELs will give you the musical bottom end you are looking for
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  #19  
Old 05-22-2019, 02:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SCAudiophile View Post
RELs are easy to integrate, no crossover orbother electronics necessary. If you need to stay with the 802D3s, a fine speaker, RELs will give you the musical bottom end you are looking for


Ditto (and strongly agreed).

I love my RELs and the set up phobia I developed reading all of these sorts of threads was misplaced. I found it to be easy. The only time I can tell the subs are there is when I turn them off for whatever reason (at which point I immediately notice spatial differences, lack of body in the sound, etc).
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  #20  
Old 05-22-2019, 11:51 PM
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Now the struggle will be to figure out which one.....
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