View Full Version : Phoenix Gold RSD 65CS Review

07-16-2009, 05:28 PM
I know this is a bit late in the game since the RSD bonar has kind of died down. But I've gotten in some good listening time and I figured I'd go ahead and throw a review out there.

I've got them mounted on 3/4" MDF spacers with rope caulk sealing up the baffles to the doors. The doors have no deadening aside from what is on there from the factory. I will not comment much on the midbass, because theres already enough "ZOMG MIDBASS" reviews. Anyhow, they are powered by an MB Quart DSC4125, which gives them 125w per side, crossed at 80hz with a -18db/oct slope. The subs backing them up are a pair of MB Quart RWE354s.

My previous setup was a 3-way active setup with 6x9 midbasses, 5.25 mids and 1" titanium tweets. I'll be using that as my basis from which I'll judge these speakers. It was no SQ world champion setup, but it was quite decent if I do say so myself.

I listened to good portions of "Blow by Blow" by Jeff Beck. This album was released in '75 and has a solid rock 'n roll base with jazz and funk influences. My favorite track to turn to on that album is "Thelonius" it opens up with a hard beat on the snare drum. The RSDs fare acceptably with this task, performing pretty well for a $65 pair of speakers. They lack the crispness and bite of other component sets I've heard, though. I'm used to the snare reaching out and slapping me across the face with a strong thump from the mid, and a sharp tick from the tweet. The RSDs just don't deliver as crisp of a sound. On songs like "Freeway Jam" or "Scatterbrain", the speakers really deliver on the transients of the guitar licks, and the mids blend nicely on the low end with the subs to provide a realistic bass guitar sound.

On another album, "Fingerprints" by Peter Frampton, some of the limitations of the RSDs become apparent. Since it's a more modern album, it's been pretty heavily modified in the studio to give a fuller, bassier sound. "Float" has a very prevalent bass buitar line. It's not the star of the show, but it is very prominent and can be a bit overpowering. The biggest problem I ran into was that at higher listening volumes, the vibrations of the bass line bled into the upper ranges of the guitar lines, and destroyed the smoothness of the notes being played on the lead and backup guitars. There were very noticeable fluctuations in their pitch. However, on a song like "Souvenirs De Nos Peres," where the rhythm is driven by an acoustic guitar, the notes are full and well-rounded. However, the same limitation I found in Blow by Blow was apparent- the plucks on the lead guitar were soft and fuzzy, not crisp. While the sound was somewhat realistic, the speakers just lacked a believable sound.

Overall, its easy to tell that these are sub-$100 speakers, but their performance is indeed admirable. It's an excellent effort put forth by PG to produce affordable speakers with a pretty solid, confident sound to them.

Pros: Although I didn't mention it in this review, vocals are strong. They blend nicely with the subs. They are clear, defined, and handle transients well.

Cons: They lack bite. They don't have the ability to really create a fully realistic sound, and seem a bit anemic. At higher volumes, the (mid)bass bleeds into the midrange.

07-16-2009, 05:34 PM
they don't get loud.. the midbass compared to even my old type r coaxials is like there isn't any. they are what they are.. I was very surprised for $60 but not surprised like i got $100+ speakers for $60..

07-16-2009, 05:35 PM
Nicely done my friend ;)

07-16-2009, 05:36 PM
when i finally get my ****ed xs65s installed i will do a comparison.. hopefully they are nowhere near the same league

07-16-2009, 05:39 PM
I mean, I don't expect the world out of them because they're $65 speakers. It's apparent in their performance. I have to admit, though, that for the small price tag, it's a lot of speaker.

07-16-2009, 07:21 PM
First worthwhile thread about the RSDs in a LONG time. Not a shabby review, either.

07-16-2009, 09:47 PM

07-17-2009, 08:13 AM
This review is dead on and that's why I don't run them anymore. I still never felt like I got more speaker than I paid for.

07-17-2009, 01:23 PM
Well, with components as cheap as the RSDs, you can't expect them to be incredible. They are very good speakers for the money, though.