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Quick Takes - Sony SA-W305 Powered Subwoofer - August, 2000


Jared Baldwin

 

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Sony SA-W305 Powered Subwoofer

Drivers:  6 1/4" woofer

MFR:   28 Hz - 200 Hz

Low pass filter:   continuously variable 50 Hz - 200 Hz

Amplifier:   55 watts rms

Phase switch:   0 - 180 degrees

Size:  15" H x 8" W x 15" D

Weight:   21 lbs

Finish:   black

Video shielding:   no

Connector type:   push/spring

Enclosure type:   ported

MSRP: $200.00

What they say:

The Sony SA-W305 subwoofer speaker uses a 6 1/4" long-throw woofer driven by a built-in 60 watt amplifier to deliver the roar of an airplane or the impact of a bass drum.  The bass-reflex design of the speaker cabinet, boasting SAW (Super Acoustically Loaded) technology, is built to greatly improve overall bass output, achieving higher SPL levels as a result.  The omni-directional bass that the SA-W305 delivers makes up for any lack of sonic depth of both your main speakers.  A preamp level and speaker level inputs/outputs provide for an easy connection to your equipment.  With a phase reverse switch, adjustable low pass filter, and level control (basically a volume knob), the SA-W305 blends into directly into the natural sound of your system.

What we found:

For both home theater and music when used in your main system the SA-W305 sounds similar, being plagued by the same problem in both formats.  The sound is somewhat rich at low volumes with the level control turned a little above half-way, but quickly begins to distort if not turned down significantly when the system is playing at higher volumes.  In fact, the sub can hardly be heard at all because the level control has to be turned down so low at higher volumes.  However, when added to a shelf system, the SA-W305 subwoofer improves the bass output noticeably.  This is where the best market for the SA-W305 should and will be.  Just remember to check and see if your shelf system has preamp or speaker level outputs.

Controls are conveniently placed on the front of the speaker for maximum ease of use, while the slim cabinet design is attractive and easy to place.  The biggest obstacle this subwoofer faces in the $250 to $300 price range is the competing subs you can purchase at these prices.  The SA-W305 would be best thought of only as a starter sub for people just venturing in the realm of home stereo/theater.

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- Jared Baldwin -

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Copyright 2000 Secrets of Home Theater & High Fidelity

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