RSL Speakers 5.1 Theater System Discussion Thread - Home Theater Forum and Systems - HomeTheaterShack.com

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post #1 of 35 Old 12-11-12, 02:43 PM Thread Starter
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RSL Speakers 5.1 Theater System Discussion Thread

RSL Speakers 5.1 Theater System Review Discussion Thread



For the full review Click Here

Conclusion
dictionary.com defines "integrated" as 'combining or coordinating separate elements so as to provide a harmonious, interrelated whole', and that pretty much sums up the RSL Speakers 5.1 Theater System perfectly. The entire speaker package has been coalesced to near perfection, from the appearance to it's sound everything blends harmoniously. This is a home theater package for the discerning individual, the person who wants everything to look and act as one cohesive unit; it's a well integrated set of speakers and a subwoofer that make an excellent home theater setup for small to mid-sized rooms. RSL Speakers should be commended for their achievement, because they executed brilliantly.

Please feel free to discuss below.

-Jim

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post #2 of 35 Old 12-11-12, 07:05 PM
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Re: RSL Speakers 5.1 Theater System Discussion Thread

That is an amazingly detailed review Jim - thanks very much!

Are those offered in different finishes?


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post #3 of 35 Old 12-11-12, 08:39 PM Thread Starter
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Re: RSL Speakers 5.1 Theater System Discussion Thread

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ALMFamily wrote: View Post
That is an amazingly detailed review Jim - thanks very much!

Are those offered in different finishes?
Thanks. This one did take me longer then normal. Guess I'm slowing down in my old age...

The RSL speakers are only available in gloss black. I'm not sure if they're planning anything else, but perhaps Howard will chime in.

-Jim

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post #4 of 35 Old 12-11-12, 09:59 PM
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Re: RSL Speakers 5.1 Theater System Discussion Thread

Yep... excellent job!
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post #5 of 35 Old 12-12-12, 09:48 AM
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Re: RSL Speakers 5.1 Theater System Discussion Thread

I've actually started considering these speakers now. I'm debating between these or for around the same price, the psb image line of speakers (C4, B5's, and B4's), with an SVS SB12 sub. I've heard the PSB's and was very impressed. My impression is that with the PSB's I could actually set the sub to cross over lower then these even with the B4's, and the SVS may give a little more umph. However from the reviews it sounds like these RSL's may have more clarity and detail and perhaps a little more brightness in the highs. Any thoughts beyond that? I wish I could here them side by side but, unfortunately I don't have a man cave to audition multiple system at once and compare, so I have to go by what I read.
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post #6 of 35 Old 12-12-12, 10:56 AM Thread Starter
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Re: RSL Speakers 5.1 Theater System Discussion Thread

Unfortunately I haven't had the opportunity to hear the PSB's, so I can't really comment on them. From what I've read they seem to be well liked though.

The SB12-NSD can actually be crossed over very high, so the 100Hz recommended for the RSL's will be no problem for it. Regardless of which speakers you use - and/or where you cross them over - the SB12 will have the same ability, so there's really no additional "umph" to be had.

The RSL's do offer that unique in home trial, where they pay shipping both ways. That means you can try them in your own environment for a few weeks without having to worry about paying return shipping if you ultimately decide they aren't for you.

How big is the room you're going to use them in, and what type of electronics do you have? Those two items are going to be critical when deciding what type of speakers will work best.

-Jim

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post #7 of 35 Old 12-12-12, 02:01 PM
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Re: RSL Speakers 5.1 Theater System Discussion Thread

The room is an 11 x 22 x 8 with two double door openings on each end. The receiver is a Onkyo TX-NR818.
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post #8 of 35 Old 12-12-12, 02:37 PM Thread Starter
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Re: RSL Speakers 5.1 Theater System Discussion Thread

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tfontana625 wrote: View Post
The room is an 11 x 22 x 8 with two double door openings on each end. The receiver is a Onkyo TX-NR818.
That's a decent sized room. If you go with the RSL speakers I'd suggest CG24's at all positions, not just the center. If you end up getting PSB's instead you should avoid the B4's and B5's, because I don't think they're powerful enough to fill out that much space.

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post #9 of 35 Old 12-13-12, 07:12 PM
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Re: RSL Speakers 5.1 Theater System Discussion Thread

I want to thank Jim for his review of the RSL 5.1 Home Theater System. Jim put a lot of time and effort into the review, certainly as much as any magazine reviewer has with our product. Jim has been a pleasure to work with.

We’re thrilled that Jim liked our system. By the way, we packed this system the way we normally pack it for everyone. We were horrified last year by videos of the delivery guy throwing TVs over a fence! Let him try to do that with our 70 lb. Speedwoofer 10. In a few places of the review, Jim has indicated that he would have liked to have seen additional low bass output from our Speedwoofer 10. I would like to add a few comments about this.

In the past, I’ve had issues with most of the subwoofers I’ve heard. I value accuracy and detail. If the bass is sloppy, I’m not interested. When I listen to music, I want to hear the skin of a kick-drum and feel the impact. I don’t want to just hear a dull boom and feel the floor shaking.

The first Speedwoofer was for my own home theater in my previous house (I really miss that theater. If you want to see what it looked like just Google “retro sci-fi home theater”). The subwoofer cabinet was about 4 feet tall and contained 2 10” woofers in a double Compression Guide configuration. This monster had a lot of usable output to 15 Hz. and below. Yet, there was no loss in detail and precision. So, we know the concept will work for larger subwoofers.

When we designed our 5.1 system, which is technically a compact system, we needed to determine the optimum size for our subwoofer. To us, there are 3 markets. First, is the audiophile whose highest priority is accuracy. Second, is the hard core bass junky whose measure of a good subwoofer is how high it can register on the Richter scale and scare the out of anybody in an adjacent room, house, or shopping mall. Kind of reminds me of a story. In 1969 I went over to Gene Czerwinski’s office. Gene was the founder of Cerwin-Vega. At the time he was building giant horn subwoofers that he used for sound reinforcement at concerts. These 8 foot tall speakers had 18” woofers that he hand built. The magnet alone (not the structures) were something like 12-15 pounds. I remember him playing them at probably the loudest volume I’ve ever experienced. My pant cuffs were flapping, my ears actually began to distort and you could literally see the walls shaking. It was a frightening experience.

But I digress. Anyhow, the third market is those who want a great sounding home theater but have to consider the aesthetics and what others in their families will accept. We determined that it would be impossible to target all 3 markets with our first subwoofer. So we decided on the first and third markets for our Speedwoofer 10.

The current Speedwoofer 10 has been very successful in targeting both markets.

We’ve been told by some of our audiophile customers that there could not be a better match for their ribbon or electrostatic speakers even if they tried to do it on eHarmoney.com. The vast majority are of our home theater customers are thrilled with the Speedwoofer’s low frequency output. We rarely get returns under our satisfaction guarantee. People tell us they can’t turn it up too high. At the T.H.E. show, we had a home theater setup with a single Speedwoofer 10. People told us that they were way up the hallway and had to poke their head in to find out where all the bass was coming from. Some of the other people demonstrating nearby weren’t too happy with us. I have a 5.1 system in my den with a single Speedwoofer 10. Sometimes I’ll watch a movie and my wife may not be interested and will retreat to the bedroom above the den. You can ask her if she thinks we need more bass output, but you might get smacked.

As a matter of fact, we’ve had many customers ask us if they should use 2 Speedwoofer 10s instead of one. While we don’t mind selling extra subwoofers, we tell them to start with one, because it’s probably more than enough. And they can always add the second one later. Ultimately, even though we don’t get to sell a second subwoofer, we get a lot of complements and glowing reviews. So, we feel our Speedwoofer 10 has enough low end output to more than please the vast majority of home theater enthusiasts. However, we can understand different people’s priorities. Home Theater is not a necessity. It is for enjoyment. And although I hate the expression; “it’s whatever floats your boat.”

When we designed our Speedwoofer 10, we could have made it far less expensive by using the same type of parts that many others use (vinyl cabinets, cheap class D amplifiers, and smaller magnet woofers, etc). However, we constantly get correspondence from RSL customers who are still enjoying their RSL Speakers after 40 years and complement us on how well they are built. We couldn’t let them down. Besides, after a lengthy absence people would be watching to see if our new models had the same type of quality as before or if we compromised. We’ve always believed in using the finest parts and weren’t about to change now. Plus, we don’t like getting nasty emails.

So, yeah, It’s more expensive than some other subwoofers however, it shouldn’t be compared to subwoofers have size instead of precision and finesse.

If you’re in the second market we described above, we reserve the right to target you in the future with additional models. Jim suggested a Speedwoofer 12. Who knows?

Lastly, I want to say how appreciative I am for the forums and the people who participate in them (with possibly a few exceptions: you know who you are). In the old days (last century) when we had retail stores, the only way to vent our opinions was in an ad in the local newspaper or a direct mail campaign to our customers. Either way was prohibitively expensive. These forums are a great way to express ideas and to acquire knowledge.

Howard
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post #10 of 35 Old 02-04-13, 11:18 AM
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Re: RSL Speakers 5.1 Theater System Discussion Thread

Excellent review! I have seen these in various magazine ads. I've always wondered what they are like. They look built well and seem to use well built drivers, all for an excellent price. They must be very confident in their product to have return shipping included. Thanks for the review!

Ray


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