BK Gemini II or REL T51i

barnitto

Active Member
The d108 arrived today and is already set up. Sounds great. I’m running it alongside some Totem Mini monitors and it now sounds like I have full range floor standers! Just really nice tight bass.
 

hamzamian

Active Member
The d108 arrived today and is already set up. Sounds great. I’m running it alongside some Totem Mini monitors and it now sounds like I have full range floor standers! Just really nice tight bass.
awesome. Are you using any DSP to integrate it like @MI55ION ?

So reading up further from the info @MI55ION pointed me to last night I think I'm going to down the route of using an AntiMode. Will mean it works with all my sources and I can set it up and forget it.

In other news... I found out today I can actually get the KEF KC62 for not much more than the D108. Small enough a difference to not really matter. Thoughts? I'm tempted to try and get both on a sale and return basis and keep the one that sounds best but it seems the KEF needs a decent amount of running in.

Also if I do that, I really should only do it once the LS50s actually turn up rather than trying it out with the Q150s I'm using right now.
 

barnitto

Active Member
No DSP, don’t think I need it. Can’t comment on the Kef, but so far very happy with the JL
 

MI55ION

Distinguished Member
The d108 arrived today and is already set up. Sounds great. I’m running it alongside some Totem Mini monitors and it now sounds like I have full range floor standers! Just really nice tight bass.

Nice. Quite incredible how it can blend in don't you think?
 

MI55ION

Distinguished Member
awesome. Are you using any DSP to integrate it like @MI55ION ?

So reading up further from the info @MI55ION pointed me to last night I think I'm going to down the route of using an AntiMode. Will mean it works with all my sources and I can set it up and forget it.

In other news... I found out today I can actually get the KEF KC62 for not much more than the D108. Small enough a difference to not really matter. Thoughts? I'm tempted to try and get both on a sale and return basis and keep the one that sounds best but it seems the KEF needs a decent amount of running in.

Also if I do that, I really should only do it once the LS50s actually turn up rather than trying it out with the Q150s I'm using right now.


The Antimode's a good call in your situation.

The KC62 certainly is an interesting proposition. According to the marketing it has some cool features and a 'servo' like design. 2 year warranty is a little err!

If you do get to compare them side by side, would be interested in your feedback.
 

barnitto

Active Member
Yep, hard to describe but with the BK you could tell it was a sub producing the bass, the D108 just disappears. Also the bass used to be similar on most tracks, now you really tell the difference between the different types of bass.
 

hamzamian

Active Member
The Antimode's a good call in your situation.

The KC62 certainly is an interesting proposition. According to the marketing it has some cool features and a 'servo' like design. 2 year warranty is a little err!

If you do get to compare them side by side, would be interested in your feedback.
Yes the 2yr warranty coupled with the KEF reputation for failing subs is a little off putting for sure! I wonder if RS do their 6yr warranty on them.

as soon my LS50s turn up I’ll see if I can arrange to have both here and try them both out.
 

hamzamian

Active Member
Yep, hard to describe but with the BK you could tell it was a sub producing the bass, the D108 just disappears. Also the bass used to be similar on most tracks, now you really tell the difference between the different types of bass.

that’s great feedback. Matches the reviews for the D108 too which is encouraging (I’m always a bit sceptical about reviews).
 

hamzamian

Active Member
KEF are still busy making my Metas but I’ve got hold of some regular LS50s in the mean time to advance things.

definitely still need a sub!

SVS have gone and made life complicated by throwing another good option into the mix with their SB3000 Micro though!

might end up being a three way trial of the KEF KC62, JL Audio D108 and SB3000 Micro now. Will amaze arrangements to try all three next week I think unless someone can rule one of them out right W away for any reason.
 

MI55ION

Distinguished Member
Not sure I'd rule it out from a demo but seen a YouTuber compare the SVS and Kef, said the Kef is impressive for its size but could tell it was trying too hard. To me that sounds like compression artefacts.
 

hamzamian

Active Member
Not sure I'd rule it out from a demo but seen a YouTuber compare the SVS and Kef, said the Kef is impressive for its size but could tell it was trying too hard. To me that sounds like compression artefacts.
Thanks. Got a link?

each extra sub to try is one more to deal with the hassle of sending it back if I don’t like it so if I can rule any out it would make life a bit easier.
 

MI55ION

Distinguished Member
Thanks.

Conversely though, Steve Guttenberge thinks the KC62 is more nimble and a very good fit with the LS50s (which I'm running too).

bah! this is too complicated :)

I don't know who that is, how well he sat up the subs or what he means by nimble.

Do as you originally planned and demo them all despite any inconvenience or you might be left with the eternal what if!

I wouldn't mind demoing the SVS or Kef just out of pure curiosity so if anyone wants to send me their units feel free. ;) Based on pure aesthetics I do like the look of the Kef but as a total package, the SVS is one hell of a proposition for systems like ours.

Having said that I can only speak for myself, find the JL to be a perfect fit in my system, even forgetting its on sometimes. No regrets.
 

hamzamian

Active Member
I don't know who that is, how well he sat up the subs or what he means by nimble.

Do as you originally planned and demo them all despite any inconvenience or you might be left with the eternal what if!

I wouldn't mind demoing the SVS or Kef just out of pure curiosity so if anyone wants to send me their units feel free. ;) Based on pure aesthetics I do like the look of the Kef but as a total package, the SVS is one hell of a proposition for systems like ours.

Having said that I can only speak for myself, find the JL to be a perfect fit in my system, even forgetting its on sometimes. No regrets.
oh this guy:

Steve Guttenberg’s review of SVS 3000 micro

from the other thread about the SB3000 micro, he compares it to the KC62 at one point as well though which he also reviewed recently.

Assuming KEF actually come through with stock this time... I should hopefully have a KC62 here at some point later this week or next. I have I think found a retailer with a demo unit of the D108 who should be able to let me have it next week too with a bit of luck (£50 shipping it back and forth though because I'm too lazy to go pick it up!).... and with a bit of help from @AmericanAudio I think I should be able to get an SVS here sometime next week too.
 

MI55ION

Distinguished Member
oh this guy:

Steve Guttenberg’s review of SVS 3000 micro

from the other thread about the SB3000 micro, he compares it to the KC62 at one point as well though which he also reviewed recently.

Assuming KEF actually come through with stock this time... I should hopefully have a KC62 here at some point later this week or next. I have I think found a retailer with a demo unit of the D108 who should be able to let me have it next week too with a bit of luck (£50 shipping it back and forth though because I'm too lazy to go pick it up!).... and with a bit of help from @AmericanAudio I think I should be able to get an SVS here sometime next week too.

That's great that you've been able to arrange all the demo units. Keep us posted, would be interested to see how things develop.
 

hamzamian

Active Member
Well there's a demo JL Audio D108 sat under my shiny new desk (delivered yesterday) now!

I've plugged it but haven't yet manage to set it up correctly (just need some time). Now waiting for KEF to pull their finger out and get the KC62 over to me and then I can ask @AmericanAudio to pop over with the SB3000 micro too.
 

hamzamian

Active Member
I now have the SB 3000 micro and the D108 sat under my desk. In all likelihood I don't think I'll have the KEF turn up in time before the demo units have to go back so I'll just pick between these two I think

I've played with e SVS app (downloaded and connected very easily, quite intuitive to use so thats' nice) and got it setup well I think, It certainly took less time and was much easier to do that with the SVS and the JLA. I think it took me several hours with the JLA and about 20mins with the SVS because of the ease of the app.

I've just spent about 30mins swapping between the two of them listening to Ilios again and again.... and to be honest the difference was immediately clear to me even when I first hooked up the SVS but I wanted to be sure.

The JLA is a lot more precise, the bass stops and starts on a knife edge and the whole spectrum of sounds works well because the LS50s really sparkle too.

With the SVS everything just seems to get a little muddier, a bit less precise and the although it still sounds like the sound is all coming from the LS50s, they sound oddly separated in that the top end still sounds precise but the bottom end doesn't seem to go along with it. Some of the sparkle seems to be lost too which sounds stupid because that hasn't changed! Can't explain that beyond my own head imagining things but is what it sounds like.

Thought I'd dump that out here as much for my own benefit in helping me to decide as for anyone else to be honest. I need to carry on listening with a bit more variety of music.
 

MI55ION

Distinguished Member
Great feedback there and no I don't think you're imagining it at all.

I had a feeling you might find something similar but didn't want to say anything to prejudice the evaluation.

Without taking anything away from the JL, I suspect the primary reason for what you're experiencing with the SVS - a sort of detachment from the Kefs - is input and DSP processing lag. As well as being a fantastic package, with an industry leading driver and quality amp, the JL has the advantage of having a very short signal path. It really is lightning fast thanks to all those factors. With the SVS it gets a little more complicated, whilst the DSP is a welcome feature for many I really do think its adding enough of a delay that you can notice it with direct comparison against a top flight sub like the JL. The only way to level the playing field so to speak is to add a delay to the Kef/main speakers. However this will require added complexity to system such as the addition of a miniDSP like device or audio processor unless you're using the analogue preouts from the PC where you can do it within the software/audio driver. Even then I still think the JL would have it.
 

hamzamian

Active Member
Great feedback there and no I don't think you're imagining it at all.

I had a feeling you might find something similar but didn't want to say anything to prejudice the evaluation.

Without taking anything away from the JL, I suspect the primary reason for what you're experiencing with the SVS - a sort of detachment from the Kefs - is input and DSP processing lag. As well as being a fantastic package, with an industry leading driver and quality amp, the JL has the advantage of having a very short signal path. It really is lightning fast thanks to all those factors. With the SVS it gets a little more complicated, whilst the DSP is a welcome feature for many I really do think its adding enough of a delay that you can notice it with direct comparison against a top flight sub like the JL. The only way to level the playing field so to speak is to add a delay to the Kef/main speakers. However this will require added complexity to system such as the addition of a miniDSP like device or audio processor unless you're using the analogue preouts from the PC where you can do it within the software/audio driver. Even then I still think the JL would have it.
Yes I think there's something to this, though I don't think it explains all of the difference. In addition to this I think the JL Audio is more nimble too, that is to say that the drivers are better able to start and stop movement more rapidly leading to better reproduction of sounds that are short and intense like certain types of drums.

With the SVS I felt like the note played for a bit too long and sounded rounded off (in terms of its length not its frequency response). I didn't get that with the D108.

So let me caveat the rest of this by stating that I have certain sensitivities to sound, I quite like loud music but I am very intolerant of any distortion or things just not sounding right. Sorry I can't explain that better... but please bear this in mind in reading what I write below. For most people its quite possible that what I say below wouldn't be true at all. I haven't yet met anyone who had the same kind of sensitivity and aversion to distortion the way I do.

Right, so the rest of the afternoon I decided not not try and listen critically but just put on a playlist I've been listening to recently and then listened to it first with the SVS and then with the D108. During this I wasn't trying to pick out differences between how the two subs sounded or anything. Just see which one I enjoyed more. The playlist I was using is about an hour long, and a mixture of EDM, House, Techo ish type music with overtones of various ethnic mixes thrown in (bit like that Ilios track I referred to but more varied). Selected not for its bass notes, but just because I've been listening to it a lot recently. This was all done while sat at my desk and working too so not focused particularly on the music.

When listening with the SVS after a few tracks I felt like turning off the music, or more accurately just turning off the sub. I didn't, because I wanted to keep listening to see how I liked it overall. When I got to the end of the playlist though I did turn off the music for a bit and left it off. Actually one other thing I should mention is that when I first plugged in the SB3000 Micro, I instantly heard some coil whine. I was pretty close to it at the time and I wasn't sure if it would be a problem, but when the music stopped I could still hear it. Its at a very high frequency and very faint, so I imagine most people won't even hear it, but I found it annoying.

I then swapped over to the D108 and put the same playlist back on. This time however I found I was tapping my feet and just engaged in the music. I didn't feel like turning it off, in fact I often turned it up for a bit. When the playlist ended, I just put on a different one.

Sorry that's not a more technical analysis of how they perform, but for me that I think it is enough to make pretty firm decision on buying the D108.
 

MI55ION

Distinguished Member
Yes I think there's something to this, though I don't think it explains all of the difference. In addition to this I think the JL Audio is more nimble too, that is to say that the drivers are better able to start and stop movement more rapidly leading to better reproduction of sounds that are short and intense like certain types of drums.

I think we are saying the same thing although I didn't elaborate, by "industry leading driver" I was basically hinting at its transient response. Or how "nimble" it is as you put it.

Your listening assessment is based on a very good method and one I often employ to judge the long term viability of a purchase. The coil whine is somewhat concerning.

I still suspect the biggest difference between the two is down to the processing delay. But I get what you're saying, even if that's accounted for, the sheer performance and natural ability to blend-in makes the JL an easy choice.

Now what about the Kef? ;)
 

hamzamian

Active Member
I think we are saying the same thing although I didn't elaborate, by "industry leading driver" I was basically hinting at its transient response. Or how "nimble" it is as you put it.

Your listening assessment is based on a very good method and one I often employ to judge the long term viability of a purchase. The coil whine is somewhat concerning.

I still suspect the biggest difference between the two is down to the processing delay. But I get what you're saying, even if that's accounted for, the sheer performance and natural ability to blend-in makes the JL an easy choice.

Now what about the Kef? ;)
haha.. well technically I've paid for it and am waiting on a delivery (on the understanding I can return it without any problems if I don't like it).

So I could just leave that as is, or I could call and cancel the order. I'm a little curious as to how it will compare I guess so maybe I'll just leave the order open. Problem will be if I prefer it to the D108 as I will have already bought that by the time the KEF turns up and they don't seem to hold their value very well on second hand sales (though the rarely come up).

Part of me is also tempted to cancel the KEF order though because it seems to have a few glitches coming out of standby which will be quite annoying. Also it has DSP too so I suspect it will have same sort of integration problem as the SVS.
 

MI55ION

Distinguished Member
haha.. well technically I've paid for it and am waiting on a delivery (on the understanding I can return it without any problems if I don't like it).

So I could just leave that as is, or I could call and cancel the order. I'm a little curious as to how it will compare I guess so maybe I'll just leave the order open. Problem will be if I prefer it to the D108 as I will have already bought that by the time the KEF turns up and they don't seem to hold their value very well on second hand sales (though the rarely come up).

Part of me is also tempted to cancel the KEF order though because it seems to have a few glitches coming out of standby which will be quite annoying. Also it has DSP too so I suspect it will have same sort of integration problem as the SVS.

In all honesty I don't think the Kef will better the JL, for a desktop setup it's just formidable. But I haven't heard the Kef so it's pure speculation in my part.

From the sound of things it seems you're very happy with the JL, I'd be tempted to call it a day. I guess you know yourself better than anyone else....
 

hamzamian

Active Member
In all honesty I don't think the Kef will better the JL, for a desktop setup it's just formidable. But I haven't heard the Kef so it's pure speculation in my part.

From the sound of things it seems you're very happy with the JL, I'd be tempted to call it a day. I guess you know yourself better than anyone else....
Yea I am pretty happy with the JL. The only reason to not cancel the order for the KEF would be curiosity!

I’ll probably just make the necessary calls tomorrow to order the JL and cancel the KC62.
 

hamzamian

Active Member
Just to close off on this, I now have a D108 of my own sat under my desk and have cancelled the order for the KC62.

I added a Dspeaker Sii anti mode too and that made things even better. Like the difference between the 3000 micro and D108 again!

very happy with the setup now.

so after 4 pages and much time, the answer to the question of BK Gemini II or REL T5 is... JL Audio D108!
 

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