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How to listen to the subs before buying?

Ozwald Spencer
Community Member


I currently own a B&W DB1D subwoofer (sealed dual 12″) which sounds great but… has some kind of DSP issue I still have after a remplacement. I feel like those guys have a really poor quality assurance testing which is crazy considering the price point.

Anyway, I feel like a 1723 SUBWOOFER 2S would be able to compare in term of sound quality but it seems I can only buy it online in order to test it. how od most people do before buying one of these subs? Is there some kind of a plan to buy and send back if it is not satisfying?


All replies (7)

Customer Support

Hello Ozwald,

We do offer a 60 days buy & try program so you can test the subwoofer where it matters most: your room.
Testing subwoofers in a store makes very little sense as the room will have a big impact on the sound.

The B&W DB1D is a great subwoofer soundwise, but for the price of one B&W, you could buy two 1723 Subwoofer 2S and still have some spare change.

You will also find that just one 1723 Subwoofer 2S will outperform the B&W in terms of dynamics, impulse response, and musicality.

So I would definitely recommend giving it a try, you won’t be disappointed.



Ozwald Spencer
Community Member

Hi Lukas,

I wish you were true about the 2S being superior to a DB1D ;)

What makes you think it’s superior? Do you have real world comparison figures? I can understand B&W margins are far superior than yours, yet I think B&W achieved a great sub if we don’t consider its price.

Speakers are a bit larger on the 2S, that I can see. Amp is overkill in both products. I guess it’s about the speakers quality, isn’t it?

I make note it’s 200 EUR to return the sub so at the moment I’ll be looking for reviews all over the web for the next couple of weeks. I see the glossy version isn’t in stock before the end of May so not in a hurry :)

Community Member

Hi Oswald

I can only speak for my SVS sub on the issue of “amplifier overkill.”  When my SVS is off, I cannot push my speaker cone in by hand, it barely moves no matter how hard I push and so, as not to cause damage I only tried this once. However that being said, the amplifier has to produce tremendous amount of power to overcome this “stiffness” and it does this easily. At high volume levels/deep base notes you need this power. The fact the cone does not want to move easily is one of the reasons for the very good definition/low distortion the sub has, i.e. it readily wants to return to it’s home position quickly. So in my opinion, go for the power if you can. Also, I’m not pushing the SVS sub or saying it’s better than the Arendal, just what I own and have observed. Arendal was not making subs at the time I purchased my SVS or I may have very well likely purchased one of theirs because I’m so happy with the main speakers.

Johan Svennevig
Community Member

Ozwald: i’ve heard the b&w db line exept for the newest db4.

They are all great, and perform both

massively and are very musical.

but in terms of bass, there are some benefits of the arendal design, which is bigger and better drivers, bigger cabinets and a more refined amp. it will produce more spl down loW, and also just as much control and musicality.

design wise they are not that much different but i hate the big frames on the b&w sub😀

i base my opinion on the legacy sub 2, which the new  2s are superior to..!


Customer Support


Before my time with Arendal, I used to sell the B&W subwoofers, so I do have a lot of experience with them.
As I said before the 1723 Subwoofer 2S will outperform the B&W in terms of dynamics, impulse response, and musicality.
It will play down lower with more control.
We also have a very refined amplifier with class-leading protection circuits, that are basically inaudible.
I can tell you that I have run into crazy and nasty sounding distortions and plain overdriven bass drivers with the B&W DB subwoofers with movies like Blade Runner 2049.
Neil pointed out correctly that with such small enclosures and the performance you get, a powerful amp is far from overkill, it is needed to work.


Community Member

Youtube reviews are your best bet.

Community Member

YouTube videos will only take you so far.  Specs and measurements are only part of the story, and only demoing their subwoofers will complete that story.  Actual in-room response will give you that conclusion, thus Arendal’s 60-day in-home trial.

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