Do I need a sub for my Monitor Audio R270HD's?

potey77

Active Member
As the title suggests, I've just upgraded my speakers to:

R225HD Centre
R270HD Fronts
R90HD Rears

Now so far I'm pretty much blown away, finally I can see why I spent £600 on the Denon 2311 12 months ago.

Bearing in mind I live in a terraced second floor flat, window rattling bass is not an option, or indeed desired. So my question to all you AV enthusiasts out there, is will a sub further improve my setup?

Unfortunately my living room suffers from rather poor acoustics, very high ceiling, wooden floors and a bloody great window. My experiences with a sub so far have just resulted in boomy, disconnected rumblings. This is the main reason I went for the R270HD's up front.

My living room is 6x4 metres. I've been looking at a B&W PV1 (second hand) or a BK XLS200, and I listen to an even split of movies/music.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
 

Member 639844

Former Advertiser
A sub will definitely improve things. For best result a pair of sub will work best, and if your not after any real performance, I might consider a pair of gemini's or xls 200's at the front next to your speakers. They will improve on the speakers and give a better sound but without going OTT. You can get those subs for the cost of a second hand PV1 and a pair will give a better more subtle and even sound over one sub that wont overpower at all.

I owned the original R270s as well, so I know your setup pretty well.
 

potey77

Active Member
Moonfly, thanks for your input.

I am leaning towards the BK XLS200, but probably just one for now and see how I get on. All in all I love the MA's, but there just seems to be a little depth lacking which I can only attribute to having a sub before (Harmon Kardon) and not now.
 

Member 639844

Former Advertiser
A pair will be better IMO. The XLS200 and the gemini both use 10" driver, the 200 just has a little more power. With a pair of the gemini's you will get a better in room response and more cone area which will help them dig a little deeper. If your budget will stretch to the cost of the PV-1, even second hand, then I would personally give the pair of gemini's some serious consideration, especially as they too come up second hand from time to time. Placed at the front of the room near your speakers (if possible) will give a better all round sound IMHO.

Failing that, the xls200 will be ok as well.
 

jamescarter1981

Active Member
I had a PV1 which i sold recently. Don't get me wrong, it's a very good sub, but is far more suited to small satellite speakers than floor standers like yours. The 8" cones on the PV1 struggled to make enough of an impact with my CM7 fronts.

I would go with a pair of XLS 200's for the same cost as the used PV1.
 

potey77

Active Member
I recently demoed a setup with two PV1 subs, it was positively trouser rattling. I just think that two would be overkill for me, or am I missing the point? My amp has twin sub pre-outs so not a problem there I suppose.

I already have the R270HD's producing frequencies down to around 48 Hz, surely just the one BK would do?
 

Member 639844

Former Advertiser
Once you put a pair of subs (or any sub for that matter) into a system, you calibrate it. Part of this is setting the output of the sub(s) to match that of your speakers, and this goes if you are running one sub or 8 subs. Adding more subs isnt about getting you bass louder, its about getting better integration with your system, smoother better controlled bass, and more system headroom which leads to cleaner bass and subs that can run louder before distorting.

The whole point of adding the pair is really about getting better sound all round, and a pair of subs is well known to deliver much improved bass over a single sub, especially in poorer rooms.

As you have the budget, it would seem a shame to me not to take advantage of a pair of subs. Normally we would recommend a better sub over a pair, but the xls200 wont really be offering much if anything over a pair of Gemini's. They are small compact subs and this seems to be your main goal, along with improved sound quality and decent output over massive spl and ultimate depth.

I just think that in your particular case, the pair of gemini's would be the best solution. If you want to do a pair of xls 200's though, nothing wrong with that either, you would simply get better bass.
 

potey77

Active Member
Thanks Moonfly, after doing some reading and on your advice I've order a Gemini II from BK.

I deliberated for some time over an XLS200, single Gemini or twin Gemin's, but have opted for just the one Gemini for now. I read a really long post on here regarding the Gemini and there was nothing but praise and given the price, it was the sensible decision.

I'll see how I get on when it arrives and report back, and may upgrade to a twin setup in the new year.

Cheers
 

Goldenbone

Active Member
Thanks Moonfly, after doing some reading and on your advice I've order a Gemini II from BK.

I deliberated for some time over an XLS200, single Gemini or twin Gemin's, but have opted for just the one Gemini for now. I read a really long post on here regarding the Gemini and there was nothing but praise and given the price, it was the sensible decision.

I'll see how I get on when it arrives and report back, and may upgrade to a twin setup in the new year.

Cheers

I run a single Gemini along with an MA RX8/FX/C set, and it does absolutely fine. I too live in a terraced flat, and I've had no reason to upgrade.
 

jamescarter1981

Active Member
Goldenbone said:
I run a single Gemini along with an MA RX8/FX/C set, and it does absolutely fine. I too live in a terraced flat, and I've had no reason to upgrade.

I live in a flat too and have recently upgraded to a JL Fathom 112. I have understanding neighbours!!

I have B&W CM7's, CM1's and a CMC2 to go with it. I used to have a PV1 but it wasn't enough with the rest of my system.
 

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