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Paradigm Signature Sub 2 Subwoofer Review Conclusion

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side1.JPGParadigm has produced a tour de force with the Signature Sub 2. It is overall the highest performing and most thoroughly impressive subwoofer that I have encountered. The msrp of $8,999 is undoubtedly a large chunk of cash but with the amount of development, technology and hardware packed into each Sub 2 coupled with the attention to detail, high tech look, beautiful finish and high performance, that big sticker starts to look more reasonable. The performance basics are well covered with a linear response, deep extension, low distortion and plenty of headroom. Additionally Paradigms PBK system is probably the best example of an automatic equalization system that I have used to date. It made a measurable and clearly audible improvement in response smoothness in my room. I was also pleasantly surprised at the basic control scheme and lack of filler features of limited usefullness on the Sub 2. The result is a subwoofer that is surprisingly easy to integrate and set-up. I had it dialed in in about an hour and a half, at which point it sounded very good indeed. Wall shaking power is on tap at will as the Sub 2 clearly demonstrated with a couple of big time performances on movie night. Obtaining useful extension and output down to the 10Hz range is not out of the question with this subwoofer. Likewise with two channel music there is plenty of headroom to serve up near live output levels. But the kicker is that no matter how hard the Sub 2 is pushed the output is always well controlled and lacking in significant coloration. You are more likely to run into issues with objects vibrating due to the Sub 2’s output in your listening space. That sort of neutrality coupled with lots of headroom goes a long way towards making the foundation of any material sound its best. The Sub 2 simply performed magnificently no matter what I happened to be listening to. One other unanticipated attribute of the Sub 2 that I noticed was that it always started a conversation whenever one of my friends or family would be over and see it for the first time where they would ask what it was or “how does that one sound”? Most of my friends have seen so many speakers come through my house that they barely get a second glance or draw a comment anymore. Not the Sub 2, it invariably received comments and questions. Paradigm’s Signature Sub 2 is undoubtedly one of the most impressively engineered powered subwoofers on the market today. If this fine subwoofer is within your financial means you would be remiss to not give it an audition.

The Paradigm Signature Sub 2 receives the Audioholics Bassaholic Extreme Room rating, which means that this sub is recommended as maintaining adequate headroom in rooms or spaces of 5,000 cubic feet or greater and/or for users who usually listen at high volume levels. For further information in how we make these recommendations see the full article here.

See: Audioholics Subwoofer Room Size Rating Protocol


bassaholic-master-extreme.jpeg

 

Paradigm Signature Sub 2 Review
Paradigm Electronics Inc.

Paradigm.com
Customer Support: (905)696-2845
MSRP: $8,999

 

The Score Card

The scoring below is based on each piece of equipment doing the duty it is designed for. The numbers are weighed heavily with respect to the individual cost of each unit, thus giving a rating roughly equal to:

Performance × Price Factor/Value = Rating

Audioholics.com note: The ratings indicated below are based on subjective listening and objective testing of the product in question. The rating scale is based on performance/value ratio. If you notice better performing products in future reviews that have lower numbers in certain areas, be aware that the value factor is most likely the culprit. Other Audioholics reviewers may rate products solely based on performance, and each reviewer has his/her own system for ratings.

Audioholics Rating Scale

  • StarStarStarStarStar — Excellent
  • StarStarStarStar — Very Good
  • StarStarStar — Good
  • StarStar — Fair
  • Star — Poor
MetricRating
Bass ExtensionStarStarStarStarStar
Bass AccuracyStarStarStarStarStar
Build QualityStarStarStarStarStar
Fit and FinishStarStarStarStarStar
Ergonomics & UsabilityStarStarStarStar
FeaturesStarStarStarStarStar
Dynamic RangeStarStarStarStarStar
PerformanceStarStarStarStarStar
ValueStarStarStar
Attached Files

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Recent Forum Posts:

haraldo posts on August 26, 2013 07:33
gene, post: 984673
That's a huge measurement difference. Ours is an industry standard controlled practice for accurately measuring subwoofers. In addition, we use CEA2010 test patterns for distortion and max output.

I will see if I can line up a review of the M&K with Josh.

Gene… Ken Kreisel is not with M&K anymore, Ken Kreisel stepped out of M&K and now made his own company Kreisel Sound, as far as is claimed, the subs he now makes betters the M&K models, but still true to the original M&K push&pull geometry concept….
gene posts on August 26, 2013 07:24
haraldo, post: 984664
Yes I know… it's a bit like comparing orange vs grapefruit, but still….
There's a big difference in measuring conditions while hometheaterhifi measures in room 3 feet from the wall and with mic distance at 2 metres
While AH measures outdoors, so of course….

My point is that the Kreisel is a very well measuring sub and it would be interesting to get proper comparable measures

That's a huge measurement difference. Ours is an industry standard controlled practice for accurately measuring subwoofers. In addition, we use CEA2010 test patterns for distortion and max output.

I will see if I can line up a review of the M&K with Josh.
haraldo posts on August 26, 2013 04:23
its phillip, post: 984547
those measurements cannot be properly compared against the ones taken by ricci

Yes I know… it's a bit like comparing orange vs grapefruit, but still….
There's a big difference in measuring conditions while hometheaterhifi measures in room 3 feet from the wall and with mic distance at 2 metres
While AH measures outdoors, so of course….

My point is that the Kreisel is a very well measuring sub and it would be interesting to get proper comparable measures
its phillip posts on August 25, 2013 20:30
those measurements cannot be properly compared against the ones taken by ricci
haraldo posts on August 25, 2013 15:16
If you look at measurements of distortions from Paradigm Sub2 and then look at the Kreisel DXD 12012
KEN KREISEL DXD-12012 Dual 12" Push-Pull Subwoofer - Secrets of Home Theater and High Fidelity














And in room response of DXD 12012, measuered by Hometheatershack, almost flat to 4 Hz
http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=9888

Then compare pricetags

If you set aside the price…. I don't see any reason to pick Sub2 over the DXD-12012
When you also look at pricetags…..

Say no more
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