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Trade My ML Descent I in for a Seaton Submersive?

4855 Views 15 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  spreston
I have been debating what to do about my current Subwoofer situation.
I have a 1.5 year old Martin Logan Descent I subwoofer that I purchased from Tweeter before I stopped working there. I have always loved it for its musical bass, but I have never been totally happy with its HT performance. It just seems to lack that last bit of impact on movies that I feel a $3k+ sub should have.
The sub is located on the front wall between my Left front tower (Focal 816) and my BDI tv stand.
Front corner placement is not possible due to a closet door in the left corner and open stairs on the right. My system has been set up using the Audyssey eq in my Marantz SR7002 receiver. All speakers are set to "small" and x-over is at 80hz. My room is a large "loft style" room over the garage. It measures 17ft deep, 21feet wide with a arched ceiling that starts off at 7ft and goes up to 12ft then back down to 8ft. over Half of the right side of the room is open to the stairs and 2nd floor hall.

While I have never demo'd a Submersive, I have heard nothing but great things about it and am curious if a sealed dual 15" sub will smoke a sealed sub with 3 10" drivers.:dontknow:
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I would suggest that for HT, the Submersive would indeed be better than the Descent I. However, that is not to say that the Descent I is any slouch of a sub.

Have you measured your response with REW to see what is happening in your room? It may be that a little placement experimenting and/or a bit of eq'ing would help.
Thanks for the input. I am pretty new to this forum and have yet to REW my system.
I have downloaded the software and own a RS sound meter, but still need to grab an external sound card for my HP Vista laptop.
Hopefully I can be up and running in a few days.
I agree, check your freq. response before you do anything. While I would think the Submersive is a better sub, that Descent is really nice. That $2000 might be better spent elsewhere in your system.
I ordered a Behringer UCA-202A yesterday so I should have a better understanding of what is going on in my room in a few days. I may also buy a BFD in a few days to help eq the low frequencies.
I am somewhat surprised that the Descent i does not meet your needs for HT. With the "i" revision adding a triamp (3x300) configuration, I have been stunned at how well it handles both HT and Music. The original Descent featuring one 400 Watt Amplifier to drive the 3 10"s I would be in much more agreement in going for the Seaton.

On the plus side, Descent i's still seem to sell quite well on Audiogon. Couple that with the fact you more than likely purchased it at cost, and you should come out like a ninja.

The Seaton is an amazing subwoofer. A good friend of mine purchased one and it is amazing. However, the two subs are somewhat similar. Both are sealed, multiple driver transducers which sport an amplifier rating within 100 watts of each other (1000 Seaton, 900 (300x3) ML). Unfortunately, I have never listened to both in the same room.

Again, since you should have no problems getting enough from the sale of your Descent to purchase a Submersive, you are in an excellent situation. All the better since you probably paid cost for the Descent in the first place.
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Jack has a good point about how the Descent i should be close in comparison. It may be that there is an issue with your room effecting the sub bass, which is another reason to measure the response to see what is happening. You may also want to move the sub around a bit and measure... it could be the location.
Sonnie, I ended up picking up that Depth. Gosh is it amazing. My little brother has a Descent i and that thing is awesome. I am overwhelmed at how good the Depth sounds considering its size. It is tiny compared to the Descent. I would have spent more and gotten the "i" model, but the revisions to the Depth are not nearly as transformative as the Descent i (Depth: 300 vs 350 watt amp, slightly bigger cabinet, advancement to servo control. Descent i: 400 Watt vs 900 Watt amplifier, servo advancements etc).

You know... ML makes great speakers and has done a great job of getting speakers out there for the HT crowd. With the quality of their full range speakers, I suspect their subs are very good and will only get better. The only drawback I have is the price... ML ain't cheap. Fortunately you can find them used at a favorable price. :yes:
Hello Sonnie and Jack,
Thanks again for your input on my sub question. You were both correct that I should REW the room before I write off my Descent I. After buying a longer cable and moving the sub to a few other spots in the front of the room, I can hear a big improvement. I used REW yesterday and the Descent I measured well down to 10hz:)yikes:) with peaks at 40 and 65 hz. I still am going to play a bit more with REW and may buy a BFD in a week or so to smooth out the response a little more.
Needless to say I am happy that I didn't jump the gun too quickly because packing up and shipping that monster would be a major pain.
It is amazing just how much a difference location/acoustics make in sound quality. That is awesome that moving your Descent has resulted in better bass performance. As you well know, that is truly a World Class Subwoofer. Also, have you hooked it up for both stereo and multichannel? Really cool that you can have multiple configurations active at the same time. I have my Depth configured both ways.

I have had my Depth for a day now and am getting more pleased by the hour, minute, and second. I spent three hours torturing my friends/gf asking if the bass sounded better as I moved it around the room.
As the Laws of Murphy always seem to prove, near the original location where my Paradigm subwoofer previously resided, yielded the best sound. However, I had spent hours when originally positioning the Paradigm in the first place.

Great news that your new location/tweaks has yielded smoother, more palpable, and abundant bass. You are quite correct about moving the Descent, that thing is a beast!
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Congrats on being patient, and not feeling like you had to jump ship to get better bass. I saw you graphs in the REW forum....very nice!
I only wish that I had discovered the Shack and REW years ago. What a great resource for home theater nuts.
Hi Marty,

I have owned a lot of subwoofers and the Martin Logan Descent is the only one I have ever gotten to sound "right." Unless you are going to the horns/ SET route, I think you are going to have a tough time getting better sound at low frequencies.

Messing around with placement on my own helped a lot but the REW software and help from this forum made all the difference. I use the Descent principally for good quality audio and REW most importantly has helped me to integrate the sub, not just by playing with graphs but thinking about why different placements and settings work.

In the end I did not use any eq beyond placement, the sub's volume and the Descent's 25hz dial. I might go back to some EQ but have a very difficult room. If you listen to audio at different volumes, check out my post on the munson fletcher effect; very interesting when you are dealing with low frequencies of these subs. I might go back to a dynamic eq based on volume...but not for full range speakers
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