I have a decent home cinema at home. For many years, I did not use a subwoofer for low frequencies but I’ve just decided to get one. I’ve chosen the Sony SA-W2500 (pictured above) as it seems to be ideal for me: powerful yet cheap.
Unfortunately, I don’t think I’ll manage to get one in Mauritius. I’ve been to many “electronic” shops and I have not been lucky.
In one shop in Rose-Hill, they had another (excellent) brand. Unfortunately, they were selling it at around 4-5 times more than it costs on Amazon.com…
In another shop at Phoenix, the vendor told me that they don’t sell subwoofers as a separate component but rather as part of a complete 5.1 system together with an amplifier. He did seem aware that Sony had a number of standalone subwoofers in its catalogue…
I think I’ll have to continue my quest until the 24th… Anyone knows where I can find a shop selling subwoofers at realistic prices in Mauritius?
Some people have asked me why I’m looking for a subwoofer even though they felt that my existing speakers were good enough. The reason is this:
My amplifier features an automatic calibration system which automatically equalizes each speaker to (try to) produce a relatively flat response. The EQ above is for my front left speaker. The amplifier has determined that 40Hz should be boosted by 6 dB while 125Hz reduced by 6 dB. This looks very bad to me. The first rule of EQ is that thou shall never boost too much. Therefore, it is evident that there is something missing in the equation: yes, a subwoofer! The cheap Pioneer speakers that I use, simply, can’t reproduce low frequencies!
I really need a subwoofer! But will I ever get one?
Santa and Christmas shopping spree!!! Yeee!!
I’m sure you chose that subwoofer based on its physical dimensions and “chimney-compatibility”, right?!? ;)
Seriously Avi, you’ll NEVER find a decent subwoofer for that price range (Rs3-5k) in Mauritius. The minimum budget here is around Rs8-10k.
Did you check the Yamaha subwoofers at J. Kalachand? If you’re purchasing a subwoofer in Mauritius, I highly recommend going with the Yamahas.
For nearly 8 years, my home cinema has been equipped with a Yamaha YST-SW300 subwoofer. It’s a really big unit: 30cm cone, 185W, 25kg (I’m using less than a third of it’s power). It was the top-of-the-range model in 1999. Bought it from J.Kalachand for about Rs11k back then and never regretted it! BIG BOTTOM END (18-170Hz)!! Room filling and earth shattering basses (Don’t ask: my neighbours ‘love’ me! Hehehe…) Apart from movies, if you like watching concerts or listening to 5.1 albums (DM’s Playing The Angel?!?), it’s worth every penny investing in a good subwoofer! The experience is just unbelievable! And by the way, you should DEFINITELY check Porcupine Tree’s 5.1 remastered albums (Deadwing and In Absentia). The 5.1 surround version of those albums are masterpieces! No wonder the band has over 3 Grammy Awards for best 5.1 Mix (2004, 2005 and 2007)…
It’s been a while since I last checked the speakers at J.Kalachand and I hope they still carry subwoofers. With the poor rate-of-exchange and low-demand, I know they rarely stock hi-fi and home-cinema equipment; they mostly go for low-end consumer goods (combi-speaker sets).
But occasionally a customer may request a special-order and they usually order a couple more. If you’re lucky enough, you may get your hands on one of those left in stock. So I think it’s worth giving them a call or dropping by the Port Louis showroom (Just ask for Pierre Alain. He will readily help you).
Thanks for the tips David.
In fact I went to J. Kalachand in Rose-Hill and they sell a Yamaha YST-SW215 subwoofer at around 9,200. It costs around $125 in the US (i.e. around 3,800). I know Mauritius is far from everything but how can Kalachand sell this subwoofer 150% more than in the US!?!
I’ll go to Port-Louis one of these days. Perhaps the price is lower there…
Indeed, the price is quite steep for an entry-level subwoofer.
I googled the YST-SW215 and the US street price ranges from $130-150 (around Rs 4-4.5k).
But using US Street Prices as indicator can be misleading. Remember that dealers like Amazon/Best Buy/etc. get huge volume discounts for bulk orders directly from manufacturers, which explains why they can easily give discounts close to 50%!
I think you can get a better estimate by using instead the MSRP (Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price).
For instance, the MSRP for the YST-SW215 seems to be about $230 (Rs 7k).
I assume the price of Rs 9,200 you quoted includes 15% VAT. So the price without taxes is Rs 8,000. Compared to the US MSRP, the difference is only Rs 1k (representing +15% for shipping/insurance/charges).
I did some more digging and found a dealer in Singapore selling the subwoofer for SGD $389 (about Rs 8.2k with 5% GST).
Ajay Ramjatan says
Manillal Store, Port Louis sells JBL. I don’t have a contact number handy though. Try asking the operator on 150.
Hi David, the price quoted is not that inflated after all. I’ll have to give that a thought because 9,200 is serious money :-)
Thanks Ajay, I’ll call them as soon as possible. In fact, I was planning to go to Port-Louis today to do some window (subwoofer) shopping but I’ve had to change my plans due to unforeseen circumstances…
Eddy Young says
I need some tips on buying a home-theatre system. My hi-fi has died on me, and instead of buying a new one, I was thinking of getting something like the Panasonic SC-PT350 to hook up to the TV set-top box (to take advantage of digital radio also).
Are home-theatre speakers worthy alternatives to specialised “music” speakers? What features should I look out for?
I found the following sensible advice reading this forum post:
Eddy Young says
Thanks for the link. I guess more research is in order.
found something ;)
http://www.amazon.com/Sony-50-Watt-Powered-Subwoofer-SA-WM20/dp/B00006L4YJ <–my sub ;),works great even if its only 50 watts (my other speakers are 100W)..cant complain,its okay for me though i would have loved to get one of the yamaha ()
while browsing through the news paper, i saw this
JBL Sub-6, normal price Rs.9900,promo price Rs.5300(+vat)~around Rs6095 @ IKS showroom port louis
60 watts i thk,not bad considering its a JBL
@eddy,it depends on what you want to do and a good planning must be made prior to looking for a model ;)
all-in-one box are okay,they relieve the hassle of having to look for the components bt as said,they are limited in scalabilty…for example if you acquire a new sound system,you most probably will not be able to hook it there and you are doomed with that configuration
for dedicated ones, you have the possibility to change,like when a new format for audio/video comes out,you only have to change the player,not the whole system and also,if you decide to have a better sub for example,you can change at any time
there is also connectivity issues,you can hook many things to it and some even convert video signals ( i know some take HDMI to RGB,some even up/downscale)
Denon and Onkyo are good choices as well as Yamaha..if you are a fan of Sony as myself,then you can go to Sony as well
problem is that you will need to buy the speakers and wires and do all the installation yourself but i can assure you that when everything is done,you get a nice satisfaction out of it (p.s. personally if you happen to have a small room then either you look for a low power amplifier or the all-in-one koz then would be a waste of money,unless you would go bigger after ;))
forgot the yamaha link :P
as a matter of fact,all sub in http://www.yamaha.co.jp/english/product/av/products/subwoofers.html rocks,and so does the price :D
Agree…Every single penny is serious money! :) More so at this time of the year.
The JBL Sub 6 is looks quite affordable. Where’s the IKS showroom? Did you check it out?
Couldn’t find any review online though. Must be a discontinued model. With a little digging on JBL’s website, I did find the manual:
Do yourself a favour and stay away from those all-in-one systems. By increasing your budget by 30-40%, you will definitely get a much more satisfying and upgradable home cinema system. Kouma nu dir en krÃ©ol: bon marsÃ© coute cher!! ;)
I’m sure if you do some shopping around at specialised stores in the UK, they will some branded 5.1 speaker systems bundled with matched A/V receivers that fits your budget. Just make sure you take the measurements of your TV room with you before visiting them.
And since you live in the U.K, you’ll have a much wider choice. You need not limit yourself to japanese brands. Some British brands such as Mission make some very good and affordable speaker sets.
If you want some really good sounding speakers, you should also check B&W and Tannoy.
The JBL Control Sub 6 looks nice but is dated. There is a review of its big brother (Sub 10) which dates from 1997…
I’ll (try to) listen to it though. The Yamaha YST-SW215 is tempting but so expensive. I’ll go to Port-Louis tomorrow.
yes its an outdated one as they are giving it away in a clearance sale :D
@David,its found,err,go after post office,to apravashi ghaat,look at la gare du nord,you will see one of the building has written on it at the top IKS..havent been there though,read in it the newspaper
btw the YST-SW215 model (one with an opening in the bottom) is the best model in my opinion..what ever model it might be,this is a winner design :)