Retained is the classic curvilinear cabinet, with its shape carefully engineered to cancel standing waves as they travel rearward through the cabinet. The laminated hardwood bracing reminiscent of musical instruments still finds a home—though re-configured for even greater rigidity. The amplifier is the powerful, yet highly controlled and ultra-reliable 600w Class A/B with new limiters that allow almost 40% more power being delivered without compression.
The driver—the heart and soul of any REL– has been dramatically upgraded with greater fore-and-aft stroke, a more supple suspension and the ability to handle greater dynamics. This new version is now capable of 112 dB output. expands the performance horizons of the original in every way, whilst retaining its core strengths of dignified beauty coupled to even more savage output.
HANDCRAFTED FROM MARINE GRADE HARDWOODS
Whilst the outer form garners all the praise, with its 1-1/8” thick curvilinear surfaces artfully finished in 12 coats of hand polished piano black lacquer, it is the inner construction that produces the clarity, quietness and dynamics for which G1 MKII will become known. The marine grade laminated hardwoods we employ are not unlike the spars on a ship. Each cabinet require two days of production time to build a single unfinished cabinet. Then the raw cabinet takes three weeks to handcraft. The resulting structure is far more than a beautiful shape; it is the structural basis for the deep bass the G1 MKII produces.
NATURAL FLOOR TO CEILING BASS
When we experience bass in real time out in the world, it occurs with height to it. It strikes our sinuses, it kicks at our chest cavities, it rumbles along the floor conveying power authority and majesty. Our Reference Line Arrays permits bass to emerge more naturally, adding a height component in how it propagates throughout the room. The bottom unit reinforces the deepest overtones, creeping and rumbling across the floor to produce room shake. The middle location provides crisp attack and articulation of kick drums or any transient-based event. The unit imparts the flutter and shimmer of all manner of instruments floating in air. Making Reference Line Arrays the Holy Grail of the REL experience and is only available with our Reference products.
Since 90 percent of the energy produced by a system resides in the bass regions, Reference Line Arrays are the magic element missing from so many otherwise state of the art systems. This air, transparency and, of course, effortless power that Reference Line Arrays convey can’t be imagined, it can only be experienced in person.
CLASS A/B AMPLIFIER
The massively beautiful, finned, alloy heatsink is necessary when dissipating the sorts of power necessary to produce prodigious deep bass for hours on end. Capable of outputting a conservative 600W (120V) on occasion, our dedicated Class A/B amplifier used in G1 MKII is a true dreadnaught. Powerful, fast and capable of tremendous current delivery, it is the finest amplifier ever designed by our engineers.
For G1 MKII we borrowed techniques learned in just the past year to ensure virtually limitless electronic limiting. These newly developed circuits allow for almost 40% more power being developed through the driver before gentle limiting takes over. The net result is that plays substantially louder (about 5 dB) than its illustrious forebear.
A CARBON FIBRE CORE
The bass engine of any REL is its crowning glory. The G1 MKII driver is some 25% stiffer in bending modes than the award-winning original, which makes it better able to cope with the profound dynamics asked of a Reference Series REL. This improvement permits us to use a softer suspension better able to react quickly to dynamics, both large and small. The result is a substantial upgrade in the speed, liveliness and dynamics of the entire system. Suspension travel now permits over 2” of stroke, which makes for exceptionally high output, resulting in almost twice as loud a final result as its predecessor. This exceptional force and agility makes the G1 MKII ideal for powerful home theater as well as fine 2-channel systems.
FINE TUNING IN THE PALM OF YOUR HAND
Begin your relationship with REL Reference by simply picking up the remote; feel its heft, how its rounded contours fit gently in the cup of your hand. This is a carefully wrought system improvement that encourages the sort of finely detailed decisions during set-up necessary to achieve the perfect balance to the ultimate system owner.
REL Reference models employ remote control in order to assist and increase ease of initial set-up. We do this knowing that once properly set, the owner will likely use it rarely during the remainder of their ownership experience as RELs truly can be set-up correctly to reproduce all forms of music and film without resorting to cheap parlor tricks like turning bass up for movies and down for music.
We make subwoofers. That’s it. Nothing else. No distractions. Nothing to steal our focus. No kidding ourselves that we can be good at everything. No trying to conquer the whole world. We just do our best to conquer our bit of it.
Each day we come in to work in pursuit of only one intention, to produce the most raw, perfect, pure sound possible, to capture the raw intention of the artist. We use the best quality materials, employ the most exacting construction requirements. We think of the problem holistically. We pursue the chase of the perfect experience of sound with an obsessive passion and vigor.
We do it because we love sound. We believe sound can move people more than any other sense. We believe it’s the integration of the bass via the perfect subwoofer that makes everything else better. And, ultimately, there is a great deal of satisfaction to be gained from doing this well, creating something of unique quality, such that you know it is going to inspire. It makes the hard work and the obsessing over each and every detail worth all the effort. That’s our reward.
We obsess over the details, never satisfied, never finished, constantly refining, simplifying, building iteratively upon what has come before. This is the path to perfection, a never ending pursuit for better.
We view the challenge simply, as the need to transform electrical currents into soundwaves that can extend the capabilities of loudspeakers. We then approach the situation holistically, looking at every aspect of the bass engine and improving any weakness or shortfall. Constantly testing and experimenting with new materials, engineering or design. Always striving to add more value with every improvement by delivering sound experiences, timeless beauty and reliability that outweigh their cost.
We take this approach on every model, no matter its size or price. Because we believe the pursuit of perfect sound is a worthy endeavor, one that can start anywhere and last a lifetime. We hope you’ll join us.
From the beginning this has been a labor of love, born from a desire for a more perfect sound experience. It began with one man’s dissatisfaction with the performance of subwoofers available at the time. That search for better, that pursuit of perfect sound remains the driving force behind REL. It has persisted through changes in ownership, it has driven massive advancements in technology and innovations in designs. Turning loose the power, the drama and the fun that lies within great music and movies.
1990 – HIGH LEVEL INPUT:
Key to this evolution was the adoption early on of a High Level connection, one that derives its input signal from the final output stage of an amplifier or receiver. This produces a seamless quality that precisely matches the sound being fed to your loudspeakers.
1998 – ABC INPUT FILTERS:
These early predecessors to the modern REL filter technology used complicated banks of rotary switches to set crossover points but while they were slow by modern REL standards they were miles ahead of the competition and served us well for almost a decade.
1998 – HIGH CURRENT AMPLIFIERS:
Current, not voltage, is what produces movement in large high powered subwoofer drivers. Our engineers ensure that our designs are incredibly robust and produce tons of current which means they not only reproduce the attack and body of a note, but also the echoes as sound dies away. All amplifiers are not the same and ours are designed specifically to reproduce the lowest of bass notes.
2005 – THE MODERN ERA:
With new ownership came fresh new ideas, efficient global sourcing of components, Silicon Valley engineering and a renewed emphasis on performance, reliability and design. Compared with products produced before this modern RELs play on average twice as loud, are twice as fast, cost far less for similar performance, and look far crisper and more modern than their predecessors.
2007 – NATURALSOUND FILTERING:
Modern REL input filters are exceptionally fast and are the true secret to producing perfect, seamless integration of the main speakers with REL subs. Simple, fast and cleverly designed to eliminate the bumps and discontinuities of competitors, these filters are the secret ingredient buried inside every REL.
2010 – MUSICAL INSTRUMENT GRADE BRACING:
All modern REL designs use heavy duty bracing designed to break up cabinet resonance modes. Many competitors use little to no bracing and those that do frequently use a simple window pane brace that creates massive turbulence and noise inside the cabinet eventually resulting in blurring of detail. On our costlier models, we employ much more elaborate bracing and materials improve all the way up to laminated hardwood braces on our Reference grade products. Proper bracing breaks up boomy cabinet resonances that destroy the correct pitch of instruments far outside the bass region.
2010 – CARBON FIBRE DRIVER CONES:
With the advent of Gibraltar, we moved decisively to the head of the class with the Holy Grail of speed ,stiffness and self-quieting in a virtually perfect bass driver. The first reference series product to emerge from the modern REL was called the G-1 and in its first three months outsold the entirety of its predecessor’s 8 year long career. Since that debut, we use carbon whenever budget permits as it imparts speed, clarity and control down low that is unparalleled.
2010 – UTRASPEED FILTERS:
These new Reference Series filters are as fast as theory permits a filter to be and many times faster than most competitors. Even something as arcane as setting correct phase becomes as clear and evident as turning on a light switch.
2014 – ZERO COMPRESSION WIRELESS:
Perhaps the name doesn’t fall trippingly from the tongue, however at a time when competitors were using antiquated Bluetooth-based systems wholly unsuitable for high end audio applications, we were setting the industry on its ear. First Longbow, using all discrete components—dedicated A/D encoders, D/A decoders and multiple dedicated power supplies and analog filters– showed how unbelievably great sounding wireless without the effects of digital compression could sound. One year later Arrow took the idea of wireless being sent broad bandwidth without the crutch of compression/expansion schemes and brought the price down by half. At REL, there is a restless urgency and a passion to get things right, then to see how far we can push these benefits down market so that the greatest number of people are helped by our team.
2016– NO. 25 ANNIVERSARY MODEL:
No. 25 commemorates and celebrates our quarter century of building the finest sub bass systems, while pointing to the future and our next 25 years as it employs our most advanced design, engineering and craftsmanship. The No. 25 combines the power of an ultra-reliable 1,000 watt NextGen3 Class D amplifier, with a lightweight and perfectly balanced carbon fibre 15” driver. All this is controlled by our legendary filter sets and proprietary crossovers with 2 separate parametric equalizers permitting remarkably flat in-room response, while maintaining the speed and resolution for which modern RELs have become known for. Learn more
2018– DEBUT OF SERIE HT & HT-AIR WIRELESS:
Serie HT was designed specifically to answer the challenge of creating affordably priced, exceptionally dynamic, pure home theater powered subwoofers. With the ideal combination of a lightweight, modern CarbonGlas™ drivers coupled to a powerful Class D amplifier that runs cool, these subwoofers produce extraordinary dynamics. For REL owners already enjoying our Reference, Serie S and T/i subwoofers designed for both 2-channel and theater use, the HT series was designed to supplement their system’s .1/LFE output to produce extremely high output for chest rumbling home theater special effects.
We’ve stripped back the High Level feature from the Arrow™ wireless to provide a wireless system dedicated for Home Theater buffs, the HT-Air™. Though it is affordable, it retains our single-minded focus on delivering zero compression and maximum dynamics.