So I've made it pretty obvious on MAF and SSA that I was ordering a 10" ICON from SSA for a while, but haven't really put up my impressions of it yet. Well, just so happens that I got her in this week and have had a couple days now to play with it. But first, the pictures!
Was too heavy for the wife to bring in...lol
All concerns about this sub not being packed gingerly and braced to survive UPS' typical mishandling can now be dispelled. The foam blocks were glued to the shipping box itself and the magnet was held in place with more cardboard and a wood basin. I ended up pulling the sub out from the magnet side because I didn't want to damage the foam blocks
Yay! I has a sticker lol. I'll save this for future use. This sub is sub-stantial (sorry, couldn't resist the pun).
That's a gorgeous-looking motor. More on that later...
I'm a big fan of these poly rings being used for spacers and the amount of side cooling this sub offers. The wiring is Audio Technix 10ga that I had lying around.
Foam pad meant to prevent lead slap. Ends up being quite effective, IMO
More shots of those poly rings that I happen to love (inherently resonance-resistant), but what stands out to me is that coil. Just like it's peeking up to say, "hello...I'm about to give you delicious, clean bass."
Believe it or not, this is my favorite feature of the whole sub (aside from how it sounds, of course. Instead of just taking a foil sticker and slapping it on the bottom end of the motor, it's encased behind some clear plastic.
Now here's where things got weird. I had an enclosure built previously for my 10" DC Audio Level 2 and was having issues getting the ICON to fit because of the double baffle as well as the inner baffle being about 1/8" too small for the basket. At first, I thought I was going to have an issue, but then a voice inside me said "turn it around, man...let that beautiful magnet be the centerpiece." So I ended up with this:
XS D2700 in the stock battery compartment sitting right alongside a Zed Audio Minotaur III. In the future, I will have a second Minotaur and be able to feed the ICON up to 2.6k at 4 ohms. Talk about efficiency and the essques!
So here's my first and second-day listening impressions. I'm just going to copy them out of my MAF build log:
SO! First day of listening to the ICON in the car. Keep in mind that Aaron actually recommended using the SMS enclosure with its 32Hz tuning and I, stubbornly, went with the dcar box anyway (seeing as how I had it at the house)...
Umm holy ****, guys. There's something awesome about this ICON. On paper, it might not look as awesome as some other subs. If all you look at is power ratings, 1250W isn't an incredibly huge amount. And it looks like a Fi*[/size][/font][/color]. But I'm telling you all that this sub has character. It has low end and in magnitudes greater than I was ever able to experience with the Level 2. I know it's not a fair comparison seeing as how the coil sizes are different, power rating is almost twice as different, blah blah blah, but it was the last sub I ran in my setup. So there. Even running the Level 2 at 2 ohms with twice the power I'm feeding the ICON at 4, the DC can't keep up. This ICON got lower, louder, and cleaner across the spectrum than the DC ever did in an enclosure DESIGNED for the DC.
Today's demo discs were*Hardwell Presents Revealed, Volume 4*(mainstream EDM) and*Chase and Status - Brand New Machine*(Drum & Bass). Hardwell's album produced a good amount of bass. Nothing exceptional, but what you would expect out of radio-friendly EDM tunes. The standouts here were Hardwell's own "Never Say Goodbye," Martin Garrix' "Animals," Armin van Buuren's "This Is What It Feels Like," and pretty much all of Chase & Status' new album in terms of bass reproduction. In a contest of lows, Chase & Status all the way, which really helped show how low this sub could dig. Low, loud, and clean are definitely the ICON's M.O. here, but what amazed me was how much more transparent my sub stage has gotten, even over doing everything I could with the DC. If the ID10 was like getting into your car first thing on a cold morning and the DC was like the first few minutes after running that defogger, the ICON is like the same windshield on a perfect autumn afternoon.
TL;DR = ICON>Level 2, though not a fair comparison. Gets louder, lower, and does it cleaner with a certain sense of character that can't really be described.
Yes, yes it is. I still want to do another tune with it, but I've been very impressed with it in terms of clarity of signal and ease of use. You would be tickled pink with it, man. I didn't choose the ICON life, the ICON life chose me
More ICON listening impressions today. Listened to a couple more albums:
Chase & Status - No More Idols
Nero - Welcome Reality
Excision - X Rated
Bass is still full, surrounding, clean, low, and (dare I say) WARM. I have yet to go back in and re-tune the front stage for the increased sub stage output, but there's something almost analog in the way the sound of this sub is. It's never overbearing or as in-your-face as the output should be making you feel, which is something I really like. That's not to say it doesn't get loud, but it does it in a way that just feels nice. Listening to one of my favorite tracks of all time, Chase & Status' "Flashing Lights" was just a pure joy and the ICON handled it effortlessly. Nero's "My Eyes" was just like I remembered hearing it live. I almost closed my eyes and saw Hard Day of the Dead's light show going on from when I saw them a few weeks ago.
In a week or two, I'll start putting in some acoustic and live instrument tracks to see how it keeps up with those.
More listening impressions will come in over time. I'm looking forward to the suspension to loosen up and see how this thing does after a break-in. Also very happy that I'm getting this response with only 750W available for the sub (4 ohms). Being able to give her rated and more is going to be a real treat.