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RSL CG3 Loudspeaker System: Conclusion

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RSL CG3 5.1 channel speaker system

RSL's CG3, CG23, and Subwoofer 10S 5.1 home theater system.

Lightning has struck twice and in this case it’s a darn good thing. I thoroughly enjoyed my time with the RSL  CG3 system and feel it is worthy of high praise.

Every single speaker—especially the Speedwoofer 10S—is an all-star performer in this price-point. The dynamics, musicality, and raw performance are a superior value. It’s at home with both music and movies and the compact size and optional wireless sub option makes it a perfect solution to the audiophile and cinemaphile who wants great performance and big sound in a small footprint.

With RSL’s a la carte model, you can go for a two-channel, 5.1/7.1 system, or grow into a full-blown Atmos and DTS:X configuration. RSL’s CG3 system will go toe-to-toe and might just outperform any compact home theater system out there at the $1,000 price-point…and some price points beyond. To get significantly better performance you need to spend significantly more money to get bigger bang for the buck. With a no-risk in home trial and free shipping both ways chalk RSL’s CG3 home theater system into the category of audio no-brainers.  Highly recommended.

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
Build QualityStarStarStarStarStar
AppearanceStarStarStarStarStar
Treble ExtensionStarStarStarStar
Treble SmoothnessStarStarStarStar
Midrange AccuracyStarStarStarStar
Bass ExtensionStarStarStarStarStar
Bass AccuracyStarStarStarStar
ImagingStarStarStarStarStar
SoundstageStarStarStarStarStar
Dynamic RangeStarStarStarStarStar
Fit and FinishStarStarStarStarStar
PerformanceStarStarStarStarhalf-star
ValueStarStarStarStarStar

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About the author:

Theo is a serious audiophile and home theater enthusiast—a passion he's enjoyed for over 20 years. He heads up many of our speaker system and receiver reviews as well as covering the latest in streaming technologies and Ultra HD video.

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Recent Forum Posts:

Hetfield posts on September 03, 2017 22:56
Chris B, post: 1207854, member: 83537
Hi there, I know I'm late to the party, and not sure if any one will read this, but the RSL CG23 5.2 system
(https://rslspeakers.com/products/cg23-5-2-home-theater-speaker-system/) does seem like the best solution for my budget.

Question 1: Is this, being end of August 2017, still my best option? (Larger speakers is not an option..)

Question 2: Which amp should I pair it with? TV from a 4k enabled Roku, and perhaps a 4k player at some point + occasional streaming from iPhone. I don't do normal bluray, dvd or cd. Perhaps I'd get a phono player down the line, but that's a big maybe.
As such, film, docs and series is what the amp will be used for 95% of the time. Budget around $600.

Thanks

Chris

You can't go wrong with RSL, and that particular system I will bet sound ridiculous. That is a nice looking system for $1,638, 1,738 making the subs wireless. Email Joe Rogers and he will give the most detailed and honest answers you will ever want.
Pogre posts on September 01, 2017 10:54
Chris B, post: 1207854, member: 83537
Hi there, I know I'm late to the party, and not sure if any one will read this, but the RSL CG23 5.2 system
(https://rslspeakers.com/products/cg23-5-2-home-theater-speaker-system/) does seem like the best solution for my budget.

Question 1: Is this, being end of August 2017, still my best option? (Larger speakers is not an option..)

Question 2: Which amp should I pair it with? TV from a 4k enabled Roku, and perhaps a 4k player at some point + occasional streaming from iPhone. I don't do normal bluray, dvd or cd. Perhaps I'd get a phono player down the line, but that's a big maybe.
As such, film, docs and series is what the amp will be used for 95% of the time. Budget around $600.

Thanks

Chris
Denon AVR X3300W. Very solid receiver and a great price. Plus it has a full set of preouts if you decide you might want a separate amp.
Chris B posts on September 01, 2017 00:33
Hi there, I know I'm late to the party, and not sure if any one will read this, but the RSL CG23 5.2 system
(https://rslspeakers.com/products/cg23-5-2-home-theater-speaker-system/) does seem like the best solution for my budget.

Question 1: Is this, being end of August 2017, still my best option? (Larger speakers is not an option..)

Question 2: Which amp should I pair it with? TV from a 4k enabled Roku, and perhaps a 4k player at some point + occasional streaming from iPhone. I don't do normal bluray, dvd or cd. Perhaps I'd get a phono player down the line, but that's a big maybe.
As such, film, docs and series is what the amp will be used for 95% of the time. Budget around $600.

Thanks

Chris
shadyJ posts on February 21, 2017 17:21
KEW, post: 1173952, member: 41838
However, if I take your approach, would it not be unreasonable to expect the ULS-15 mk2 to have unlimited headroom in EQ1 mode?
As a con, you listed “Limited headroom in EQ1 mode” but I would surmise that anyone who was familiar with this sub and understood the nature of the EQ1 mode would understand headroom would be limited.
Well, I do explain that critique a bit more in the review, so that ‘con’ listed there is a simplification. More fully explained, EQ1 runs the sub flat to 20 Hz, and that sort of frequency response can be very hard on the sub at the low end. To maintain the same SPL for a drop of one octave, a sealed sub has to have four times the excursion. So for content played back at 100 dB, the ULS will be breezing by in passages with 40 Hz frequencies but struggling with 20 Hz frequencies. For this reason, EQ2 should almost always be used, unless you are only playing back at modest loudness levels.
KEW, post: 1173952, member: 41838
It is customary if there is not an obvious con to “reach” for one. I don't know how many sub reviews I have read where “heavy” is one of the “cons”, but I think almost everyone realizes it takes weight to make a potent sub
Agreed, this is a mostly fair statement to make. The exception to weighty potent subs are cylinder subs, at least for low frequencies. And also ‘heavy’ can really be a con when, as a reviewer, you want to emphasize to the reader that 176 lbs is no joke, as with the PB16-Ultra. You have to take that kind of weight seriously, and I am sure there will be those who buy it and find out they simply can not manage that kind of weight. To move it up and down stairs and to transport it outdoors for testing, I had to get a two-man lifting harness, and even then it was not easy.
KEW posts on February 21, 2017 13:44
shadyJ, post: 1173893, member: 20472
Yeah, but then how many readers will understand what 20 Hz really means, as in the personal experience of it? Most subwoofers do not play down to 20 Hz, and no $400 subwoofer that I know of can do 20 Hz nor can any sub of the size of the 10s do 20 Hz. Asking 20 Hz at this price and size is setting the bar too high.
I guess we'll have to agree to disagree on philosophy of presenting information.

However, if I take your approach, would it not be unreasonable to expect the ULS-15 mk2 to have unlimited headroom in EQ1 mode?
As a con, you listed “Limited headroom in EQ1 mode” but I would surmise that anyone who was familiar with this sub and understood the nature of the EQ1 mode would understand headroom would be limited.

It is customary if there is not an obvious con to “reach” for one. I don't know how many sub reviews I have read where “heavy” is one of the “cons”, but I think almost everyone realizes it takes weight to make a potent sub
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