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Velodyne SubContractor Series SC-12 Subwoofer and SC-1250 Power Amplifier

Part II

August, 2006

John E. Johnson, Jr.

 

The Sound

For the listening tests, I used a McCormack CD transport and DAC, Mark Levinson No 326S preamplifier, Lamm M2.2 power amplifiers, and Carver Mark IV ribbon speakers. Cables were Nordost.

 

This old Telarc CD is my favorite for testing subwoofers, because it has a huge bass drum in the Copland Fanfare for the Common Man, but also because the dynamics are not compressed.

Although the SC-12s can't compete with my Velodyne F-1800s that I have in the lab, I was surprised at what they could do: punchy and no obvious distortion.

Very impressive for 12" cones. And, the SC-1250 prevented them from being overdriven.

 

Gettysburg was a pretty good movie, but it definitely had a great sound track.

They use various drums to simulate the sound of cannons in the music, and the SC-12s handled it all without any hiccups.

Deep, clean, and powerful.

 

Another good Telarc disc for testing just about any hi-fi component is this rendition of Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture.

The music is very intense, but it is the uncompressed recording of cannons at the end that will put amplifiers, speakers, and of course, subwoofers, to the test.

I really expected the SC-12s to strain here, but they did not. This is due to the 27 pound magnet structure on the drivers, a sealed enclosure, and the SC-1250 limiting the output to 50 volts.

 

I use this Mary-Chapin Carpenter album mostly to see if a speaker produces any chestiness with her deep voice, but in this case, I just wanted to find out if the SC-12s could rock.

They did.

The bass is very tight with these drivers. Not floppy or loose. That's good.

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