Subwoofers

JL Audio Fathom F110 Subwoofer

ARTICLE INDEX

Setup

I'm not going to waste precious time on how I unpacked the F110, or further description of its appearance, except to say that most of the many fine-tuning controls are located on the front panel, which I found very convenient. Also, as I'm not sure how many subwoofer manufacturers now include such a feature, it is worth mentioning that JL Audio includes in all its subwoofers an automatic setup program called "Automatic Room Optimization," or "ARO," which claims to flatten bass peaks caused by room modes. The ARO process requires you to set the front panel controls to certain positions and then, with the supplied microphone, sit in the primary listening position while the subwoofer cycles through a series of noise tests.

After several minutes, voilà, the subwoofer's in-room response is supposedly optimized. Once the ARO has been completed, it is stored and can be engaged or disengaged via the front panel. I left the ARO engaged most of the time. As a final preliminary comment, I found that as a general matter, the F110 manual was quite good at what was a very unfamiliar process to me – it includes lots of pictures and lots of words, but all were easy to understand. As JL Audio advises, stereo subwoofers should be placed near the main speakers and the pair of F110s I received were placed just outside my Avalon NP 2.0 Evolutions; the back edges of the F110s were 5.25" from the front wall while the outside edges were 10.25" from the side walls. I connected the F110s to the pre-out of the different integrated amplifiers I had on hand. The front wall measures 172" wide overall. The other dimensions of the room include a length of 246" and a height of 117".