- Reference dual 15 inch high output subwoofer
- Exclusive 600W RMS amplifier
- Parallel Drive Technology
- Sealed cabinet design for improved sound quality & subsonics
- Opposed side-firing drivers cancel out cabinet vibration
- Stackable for multiple sub setups
- Outstanding midbass performance
- Massive 1 inch thick cabinet
- Dual 1 inch thick grills with acoustically transparent fabric
- Compact CAD designed enclosure
- Precision CNC machined
- Full 1 inch radius corners throughout
- High quality black laminate finish
- RCA and XLR inputs
- 1500W short-term RMS
- Frequency response : 20-300 Hz +/-3.5 dB anechoic
- True 15 Hz or lower in-room extension
- Weight: 140 pounds shipped
- Size: 22 H x 18 W x 24 D (16W w/o grills)
- Designed & assembled in our USA factory
At this price point, the market is riddled with ‘me-too’ subwoofers that all tend to share the same basic blueprint: Single driver, ported design, ~300 watts, small ports, etc. The Empire changes all of that. It is a refreshing departure from many of the boomy, noisy and sometimes downright unmusical bang-for-your-buck subwoofers designed to maximize profits, but not your movie and music experience.
The Empire takes subwoofer performance and sound quality in a new and better direction. That’s right. More than any other subwoofer we’ve offered to date, we let sound quality be our guide to the finished design. The results are simply astounding, if not revolutionary.
Parallel Drive Technology
Our new Parallel Drive Technology is the driving force behind its performance. We discovered that designing a pair of drivers to specifically replace a single driver can lead to some very large performance increases without an increase in cost, when done right.
The Empire's two drivers have a surface area equivalent to roughly a 21 inch driver. However, we have TWO motors driving the cones in parallel instead of a single motor. Instead of asking one driver to work very hard, we let a pair of driver’s coast through the most torturous of playback materials. Speed, sound quality, explosive dynamics and effortlessness are the name of the game.
There are many advantages to this design approach. Having dual drivers allows us to mount the drivers in an opposite-firing configuration. This results in almost no cabinet vibration, especially when compared to single driver subwoofers. If you put your hand on the subwoofer during a very loud passage, and you will notice the cabinet doesn’t vibrate. The drivers are internally ‘coupled’ via the bracing to cancel the forces on the cabinet. Virtually no energy is transmitted to the ground or floor via the cabinet.
The extra cone area creates an extremely efficient design. The sensitivity and overall output are in the stratosphere compared to even the most expensive subwoofers. When it comes to home theater, its midbass slam is phenomenal. We are talking about chest pounding impact.
Compared to similarly-priced single driver 12 or 15 inch subwoofers, the Empire is acoustically in another world. Even when compared to a separate midbass module, it still has more overall output capability. In fact, it has more overall midbass output than any other subwoofer we have ever offered.
Nearly all of our customers need a subwoofer that plays double duty for both music and movies. The Empire makes that possible. Most music doesn’t dip much below 40 Hz. In this region, the Empire is generally using a very small fraction of the power that other subwoofers would need to generate the same results.
This means that at normal listening levels, the Empire’s music performance is unmatched. It is effortless and controlled. However, it also means that it is capable of reproducing music at very high levels. It is right at home with difficult-to-match speakers that are high efficiency/output, as well as electrostatics and planars.
The Empire uses a pair of proprietary 15 inch drivers. They each utilize a Kevlar-reinforced paper pulp cone for maximum stiffness and rigidity while retaining a lightweight cone that reacts quickly to changes in music or movies. The driver’s surround and spider are optimized for our sealed cabinet and provide linear operation throughout their range.
To properly control the cones, we use a big motor to realize their full potential. The combined motor/magnet structure depth of both drivers is a monstrous 4 inches and nearly 8 inches in diameter. This gives these drivers the highest ratio of motor strength to cone weight that we have ever offered.
The magnets of these drivers are large on purpose. Just like a race car, a larger engine increases the overall performance. The larger we made them, the tighter and more accurate they sounded. Making the motor structures smaller is cheaper, but a larger motor = more control = better sound.
The pair of voice coils run cool as the power of the amplifier is split between them, instead of being sent to just one coil. This was done on purpose to maximize dynamics and minimize compression. This just means that if you are listening to music or movies at high output levels for a long period of time, the output stays loud because the voice coils stay cool. That is a great thing!
In this case, the whole is more than the sum of the parts. The pair of drivers elevates the performance of the Empire to that of a truly reference quality subwoofer. The output is there for sure, but the sound quality is also just as impressive. These drivers can handle anything that you throw at them.
The low end of the Empire also has some nice advantages thanks to its sealed design. It does not generate ANY port noise. This makes it far more difficult to localize in a room, as it can disappear completely from the soundstage as it should. Its sealed cabinet sounds incredibly tight and clean in the lowest regions with no overhang. Its low end is crisp and controlled.
Subsonic bass occurs more naturally with the sealed design as well. The Empire does not roll off below tuning like a ported subwoofer does. You also can not unload the driver at extremely low frequencies like a ported design, thanks to the natural air-spring inside the cabinet.
We have increased the thickness of our cabinet’s outer walls to 1 inch throughout. The dual grills also feature 1 inch thick construction. We’ve even tooled-up our own massive set of custom metal grill pins to hold the Empire grills without a hint of vibration. Nothing off-the-shelf worked, so we went ahead and designed our own.
But we didn’t stop there. The cabinet even features an internal sub-enclosure for the amplifier. The amplifier rests comfortably in its own air-tight enclosure. This is pretty much a first, compared to nearly any other online speaker or subwoofer company. Thanks to the force-cancelling driver configuration and the airtight sub-enclosure, the amplifier experiences almost no vibration or stress. As a result, the amplifier performs better and lasts longer.
When you pick up the Empire to place it in a room, you will suddenly understand the quality of the whole package. It weighs in at nearly 120 pounds. Some comparable subwoofers weigh in at about HALF that amount or less. This means our unbelievably stout cabinet design won’t degrade the performance with its own vibrations.
Our proven amplifier design has all of the features you could possibly want and then some. It has dedicated direct inputs for both crossover and LFE usage. We even offer these inputs in both RCA and XLR inputs for the highest quality audio systems. Being able to generate 600 watts RMS and 1500 watts short term RMS doesn’t hurt either.
To help with functionality, we’ve also included several features for plug-and-play setup. The crossover can be bypassed for use with a receiver or set between 50-150 Hz. It has a phase control that can be set at 0 or 180 degrees to help blend with your main speakers. You can also activate the amplifiers ‘auto’ on function, which automatically turns the subwoofer on and off when you are listening to music or a movie.
The amplifier is an ultra-efficient Class D design. It features an advanced switching power supply that offers both 120 and 220 Volt operation. The no-hum ground-loop free design means that the only sound coming out of the subwoofer is deep, clean bass. Its thick steel face plate and massive dual internal heat sinks allow it to play clean and stay reliable.
Since the amplifier sits in its own airtight housing, it runs very predictably and stays cool. Thanks to the driver configuration, there are also no vibrations to shorten the life of the amplifier or compromise sound quality. We didn’t miss a single detail with this subwoofer or its components.
We’ve noticed that our customers often crank up their subwoofers for the first few days with the loudest material possible. They are excited about experiencing bass at high output levels. After the subwoofer system is run through the ceremonial barrage of bass heavy DVD’s or recordings and gets dialed in a little bit better to the room, customers start listening to how it actually sounds.
This is when the subwoofer starts to show its true colors. All of the low bass output in the world can not fix muddy, bloated and unmusical bass performance. That is why the Empire was designed around sound quality first and foremost.
When the Empire is reproducing an audio signal, it just sounds better. It gives you everything that you expect from an Epik subwoofer, but it also raises the bar for what to expect at this price. Who knew that reference performance could be so affordable? Epik did.