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Subwoofer for desktop and small room

DHzHolden

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Mar 6, 2024
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Hello ASR,

First time caller!

The bulk of my music listening is sitting at my desk in my little home office. It's a near-field listening position. I have a pair of Genelec G Twos on the desk, they are wonderful, good to maybe 70Hz, but I am looking to go lower. I am listening to music and not LFE for movies. Steely Dan, Kraftwerk, Jeremy Denk, Sakamoto. My typical listening level is around 75dB or less, not really loud.

My office is the smallest bedroom of a modest house, measuring 8'10" x 9'4". The desk is in a corner, there's a paper shredder, a file cabinet, and some built-in cabinets, and the door swing, not leaving much floor space out of about 100 square feet. I have been on the lookout for a used Genelec F1 subwoofer and have found one. It would integrate easily with the G Twos, but...is it really a subwoofer? The Genelec published spec is ±3dB from 80 to 35Hz. It's a 6.5" driver.

The competition is the RSL Speedwoofer MkII, big ten inch, comparable price, louder, much better LF extension.

If I get the Genelec F1, it will fit under the desk, along about 60" of wall. If I get the Speedwoofer, it won't fit under the desk, and there is very little available floor space, about 40 inches along the wall, for its 15"-wide footprint. So:

Genelec F1
Pros:
  • Will fit under the desk
  • Down-firing (Not sure if this is really a factor)
  • Designed to go with the G Twos
  • Matchy matchy!
Cons:
  • Less deep bass, rolls off around 35HZ
RSL Speedwoofer MkII
Pros:
  • Deeper, louder!
Cons:
  • Will NOT fit under the desk
  • Will eat some limited floor space in the office
I am torn between the Easy Way Out with the Genelec, which will be invisible and fit into the environment easily, and the Best Performance at the price point with the Speedwoofer, which will kick more keester.

In the end, I am sitting at my desk, surfing the interweb, or playing my guitar along with a 40 year old recording of Neil Young. I have the attack of a bass drum with the Genelec monitors, but I don't have that kick that I know is there. Will the Genelec woofer satisfy, or will I miss that 15 or so Hz between the Genelec and the Speedwoofer?

This kind of angst is why I got out of audiophilia...

Thanks for your comments and all best,

Dick
 
Last edited:

rynberg

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Drop D on a bass is ~36 Hz...synths frequently have fundamentals (or "sub-harmonics") in the low 30 Hz range or lower. Considering the Genelec F One costs $1,000 and is not even a real subwoofer, I would be strongly looking at other options. Smaller overall footprint than the RSL Speedwoofer 10s at similar cost is a Rythmik L12. A Rythmik FM8 is even narrower footprint (but taller) and is same cost as the Genelec F One. In any case, even for music, a "subwoofer" only extending to 35 Hz is a dealbreaker for me.

EDIT: a lot of the time with smaller subs in this price range, it's not even a matter of pure output capability as frequency response. Many "subs" in this price range roll off hard in the mid 30s Hz (or even higher), which is one of the reasons why the RSL Speedwoofer 10s is so popular. It has good extension until compression kicks in.
 
Last edited:

staticV3

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Hi @DHzHolden! Welcome to ASR.

May I give you some alternatives.

The F One is 23L in size (cubic approx.) and has unknown frequency response and output capability (excluding Genelec's very sparse spec numbers).
A single 6.5" driver and 40W Amp doesn't exactly instill confidence.

At 32L, the Kali WS-6.2 is only slightly bigger than the Genelec, but with two 6.5" drivers and a significantly more powerful Amp, you can expect some decent subbass from it.
Here are measurements: Link

If the Kali is still too big to fit under your desk, there's the KEF T2.
25L in size, with a single 10" driver and again a much more powerful Amp.

Edit: that being said, neither of them has RCA Line out to connect your G Twos to.

If that's a requirement, then the Speedwoofer honestly sounds like a smart choice.

As far as I can tell, the 10S MKII is the most powerful sub under $1000 and 60L.
 
Last edited:
OP
D

DHzHolden

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Mar 6, 2024
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Drop D on a bass is ~36 Hz...synths frequently have fundamentals (or "sub-harmonics") in the low 30 Hz range or lower. Considering the Genelec F One costs $1,000 and is not even a real subwoofer, I would be strongly looking at other options. Smaller overall footprint than the RSL Speedwoofer 10s at similar cost is a Rythmik L12. A Rythmik FM8 is even narrower footprint (but taller) and is same cost as the Genelec F One. In any case, even for music, a "subwoofer" only extending to 35 Hz is a dealbreaker for me.

EDIT: a lot of the time with smaller subs in this price range, it's not even a matter of pure output capability as frequency response. Many "subs" in this price range roll off hard in the mid 30s Hz (or even higher), which is one of the reasons why the RSL Speedwoofer 10s is so popular. It has good extension until compression kicks in.
rynberg,

Thanks for your reply. I can't argue with your comments about the Genelec sub. In a way it reminds me of my old Cambridge Soundworks 2.1 system; two little speakers on the desktop and a "sub" under the desk. That was even less of a sub than the Genelec.

I looked at the Rythmik FM8, it looks like a great product, but it's not very much smaller than the Speedwoofer, which is half the cost of the FM8. The Genelec lists for $1k, but the one I was considering is used at half that price. So the Speedwoofer is more in my ballpark than the FM8. I read the About Us page on the Rythmik website, those guys are very impressive in their passion.

Again, thank you.

Dick
 
OP
D

DHzHolden

Member
Joined
Mar 6, 2024
Messages
9
Likes
10
Hi @DHzHolden! Welcome to ASR.

May I give you some alternatives.

The F One is 23L in size (cubic approx.) and has unknown frequency response and output capability (excluding Genelec's very sparse spec numbers).
A single 6.5" driver and 40W Amp doesn't exactly instill confidence.

At 32L, the Kali WS-6.2 is only slightly bigger than the Genelec, but with two 6.5" drivers and a significantly more powerful Amp, you can expect some decent subbass from it.
Here are measurements: Link

If the Kali is still too big to fit under your desk, there's the KEF T2.
25L in size, with a single 10" driver and again a much more powerful Amp.

Edit: that being said, neither of them has RCA Line out to connect your G Twos to.

If that's a requirement, then the Speedwoofer honestly sounds like a smart choice.

As far as I can tell, the 10S MKII is the most powerful sub under $1000 and 60L.
static,

Thanks for the reply. I had not thought of comparing size as volume of liters, that's useful! I looked at the Kali and the KEF, both smaller than the Speedwoofer but won't fit under the desk. And you're right, these boxes don't support RCA connections to the G Twos. I am trying to keep this simple, and the Speedwoofer has good connectivity and controls. It's looking like the ('lectrical) path of least resistance. :facepalm:

All best,
Dick
 
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