A few years ago we had our first taste of REL Acoustics subwoofers into our stores here at Richer Sounds and I must add, what a delicious taste it was!
I had heard of REL Acoutics as a brand but never had the pleasure of listening to one first hand. It’s safe to say that when I did, I was sincerely impressed by their whole range and customers thought exactly the same. Their build and sound quality was difficult to rival, so it made me wonder what they could change when I heard that the baby of the bunch, the Tzero, had been given an upgrade to the aptly named Tzero V2. Would it be purely aesthetics like I see on many products or maybe something more important like how it performs? Well let’s find out!
You know that aesthetic change I thought might of occurred? Yeah, that’s not the case as it looks exactly the same as the version 1. This is no bad thing as its glossy finishes (available in black or white) really are stunning and when compared to other products around for a similar price, they definitely stand out in the looks department. If you’re familiar with the Tzero, you’ll be aware of its size… or lack thereof so to speak. It’s not overly massive and is almost cubical in shape. With measurements of 216mm x 260mm x 241mm it’s not something you are going to have to redecorate the house to accommodate and should hide snugly away somewhere. Although, as mentioned previously, it’s a beautiful design so why not show it off instead of shoving under a table in the corner?
It’s a good job that the Tzero V2 has been manufactured in this way though as underneath it’s glossy design is an improved 6.5 inch-long throw bass drive that kicks out a substantial 100 watts. This is the major difference between the Tzero and the V2 and it’s something I need to explore. From what I’ve read and been told, the driver used is more in line with their much more expensive subwoofers and offers a hefty improvement over its predecessor. Well, an alleged improvement at this point, as I’m yet to actually plug it in so I suppose that’s what I should do…
I’m going to hook it up using the standard low level input connection you see on most subwoofers. This is opposed to the way REL recommend hooking it up to though, as they would prefer me to use the high level input and connect it using their Speakon cable. I’ll do that after but first let’s see how this new driver inside the Tzero stacks up against in predecessor.
Pretty well, I’d say. There seems to be a bit more tightness from the bass and although it’s not a huge difference, it’s enough for me to notice. It still packs the same punch as before and copes really well with both music and films. It’s a very musical subwoofer and I think this is a huge benefit for anyone looking to hook it up to their hi-fi as opposed to a home cinema system. Now, if music is your thing then the aforementioned Speakon high-level input connection may be the way to go. By hooking it up directly to the speaker terminals on your hi-fi, REL claims it “allows the unit to integrate more seamlessly with your system.” They claim this allows the subwoofer to receive the same signal as your speakers to create better timing and tonal balance. I’d say that’s pretty much spot on as the improvement in sound when using this high level input a definite upgrade. It didn’t make too much difference, at least to my ears anyway, when hooked up to a surround sound system but there was definitely a marked improvement when using it with a hi-fi.
All in all, it’s a worthy upgrade from REL and the new driver has made a difference to an already fantastic subwoofer. If you fancy listening to it for yourself then simply contact your local Richer Sounds for a demonstration.
Author: Bradley, Plymouth store