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Reaction Audio PS 215X Subwoofer Preview

The Reaction Audio PS 215X

The Reaction Audio PS 215X


  • Product Name: PS 215X
  • Manufacturer: Reaction Audio
  • Review Date: May 22, 2014 10:00
  • MSRP: $1,179.99
  • First Impression: Pretty Cool
  • Dual 15 inch compact powered subwoofer for music and Home Theater
  • Cast frame baskets and 10 lb magnet structures
  • 1000W RMS amplifier
  • Bipolar Design
  • Sealed design delivers clean deep bass free of port noise
  • Opposed baffle design cancels out most cabinet vibrations
  • Heavy Duty HDF, 3/4 inch cabinet with full panel internal bracing
  • Recessed baffles for clean look
  • 1/2 Radius on all sides
  • Smooth Satin Black Finish
  • RCA inputs and outputs
  • High Level Inputs
  • Frequency response : 22-200 Hz +/-3.5 dB
  • 14 - 17 Hz usable in-room extension capability
  • Large rubber feet allow for placement on any surface
  • Black magnetic cloth grills
  • Weight: 140 pounds shipped
  • Size: 24 H x 18 W x 24 D
  • Free Ground Shipping to the lower 48 US states!
  • 30 day in home trial
  • Warranty: 5 years on drivers, 2 years on electronics

For those who aren’t up to date on the latest buzz, Reaction Audio is the newest player in the ultra-competitive Internet direct subwoofer game. The company is the baby of Jeremy Edge, who was a pro-touring musician for 20 years and achieved a measure of success with his band Candlelight Red. In addition to being a musician, Jeremy also had great interest in DIY speakers and subwoofers, having dabbled in the subject for years. Today, Reaction Audio’s lineup consists of several dual opposed, sealed subwoofers ranging from their entry level BPS 212 “Turbo” priced at $499.99, up to the $1,179.99 PS 215X which we’re looking at today.

So what exactly is a PS 215X? Starting with the drivers, you have a pair of 15” woofers with 74mm of peak to peak excursion (xmech, aka mechanically limited). Motivation is provided by a Dayton SPA1000 plate amplifier that provides 1kW of Class A/B power. Then we come to the enclosure, in this case a relatively large 24”H x 18”W x 24”D box made of ¾” heavy duty HDF, featuring double thickness driver baffles and full panel internal bracing. Judging by the components alone, one can guess this is a well-made subwoofer that should deliver prodigious output. 

PS 215X Woofer

The driver for the PS 215X features a cast basket and a hefty motor structure.

So just what can this puppy do? The native frequency response is rated from 22Hz-200Hz +/-3.5dB, in room (as opposed to ground plane/outdoors). If you’re surprised or disappointed, don’t be: without electronic signal manipulation, most sealed subwoofers roll off relatively early compared with their ported counterparts. In small to medium sized rooms, this tends to be a benefit, as a phenomenon known as room gain helps boost the low end, leading to a flat overall response. Of course, for those with larger rooms who find they need a bit of low end boost, the Dayton amplifier’s built in PEQ can help with that as well.

It’s also worth noting that Reaction Audio does utilize a rumble filter to shelve down infrasonic frequencies; this helps reduce the amount of power wasted on frequencies the subwoofer isn’t designed to reproduce, not to mention cuts the risk of bottoming out a woofer. Nonetheless, Jeremy & Co. expect the PS 215X to deliver usable extension down to 14-17Hz in room, which should satisfy all but the most ardent of bass-heads. In terms of output, “prodigious” might be an understatement. Average maximum output is predicted to be on the order of 120dB from 20Hz-31.5Hz, while 40Hz-63Hz sees a jump to 131dB (1 meter, peak, half space). Those numbers indicate that the PS 215X should meet the Audioholics Bassaholic Extreme Certification.

Dayton SPA1000

The Dayton SPA1000 delivers ample power as well as a channel of PEQ to help tailor the PS 215X's response to your room.

Of course, there’s more to a subwoofer than just performance: appearance matters unless you plan to hide a subwoofer behind a false wall (or you happen to live in a van down by the river). In that respect, it’s fair to say the PS 215X isn’t sporting a furniture grade finish made of exotic wood. On the other hand, Reaction Audio did take some efforts to ensure that it isn’t a total eye-sore either. There’s no cheap truck-bed liner here, but a smooth satin black finish. All edges are radiused ½ inch, and full panel magnetic grills are included, which are nice touches at this price point. Last but not least, the woofers are recessed into the front baffle, which adds a “finished” feel to the product.


 It looks like the competitive ID subwoofer industry just got a little hotter with Reaction Audio on the scene. $1,180 isn’t chump change for a subwoofer, but the PS-215X looks to be capable of delivering the goods and then some. Massive output is pretty much a given taking into account the size of the beast as well as its dual 15” woofers and ample amplification. What was less expected were some of the nicer touches on the finishing side of the equation; while you won’t mistake its looks for fine furniture, offering a standard satin finish and magnetic grills are nice touches that go a long way in terms of spouse approval. Does anybody need a couple of these powerhouses for their theater? Let us know on the forums.

For more information, visit: Reaction Audio

Unless otherwise indicated, this is a preview article for the featured product. A formal review may or may not follow in the future.

About the author:
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Steve Munz is a “different” addition to Audioholics’ stable of contributors in that he is neither an engineer like Gene, nor has he worked in the industry like Cliff. In fact, Steve’s day job is network administration and accounting.

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