Fo­cal E 30 KX

12-inch Sub­woofer Re­view

Pasmag (Canada) - - Test Report -

In this re­view we are go­ing to take a look at one of the new­est Fo­cal sub­woofers. The Fo­cal E 30 KX is a 12-inch dual voice coil woofer de­signed to ap­peal to the cus­tomer look­ing for a higher-end high-out­put sub. And from the looks of it, the high-end ap­peal tar­get scores a bulls­eye.

Built on a cus­tom de­signed, rugged cast alu­minum bas­ket and nicely fin­ished in gray pow­der­coat, the E 30 KX is an im­pres­sive woofer to un-box. The woofer is beefy, weigh­ing in at just over 24 pounds, due in no small part to the mas­sive 170-mm dou­blestacked mag­net assem­bly.

Mak­ing full use of all that mag­netic en­ergy is a four-layer cop­per-clad alu­minum voice coil, wound on a stiff fiber­glass for­mer. The dual coil lay­out mea­sures 65 mm in di­am­e­ter, or roughly 2.5 inches. Keep­ing the coil cen­tered in the mag­netic gap, and pro­vid­ing com­pli­ance to the sus­pen­sion, is the duty of a pro­gres­sive-type 190-mm poly-cot­ton spi­der.

All of this tech­nol­ogy con­nects to a hand-made con­i­cal cone, built on­site at the Fo­cal fac­tory. The cone is formed by hand-stretch­ing the Fo­cal K2 fiber cloth on the front side of a foam core, fol­lowed by a fiber­glass layer on the back. The re­sult is a very well damped and stiff cone that will not cre­ate dis­tor­tion and un­wanted res­o­nances. A con­vex in­jec­tion-molded poly-dust­cap fin­ishes the cone, and car­ries the fa­mous Fo­cal logo. To con­nect the outer edge of the yel­low cone to the cast bas­ket, a full hemi­spher­i­cal rub­ber sur­round, mea­sur­ing 29 mm in width is em­ployed.

To aid in re­li­a­bil­ity, the voice coil is kept cool via the spi­der pump­ing air through six 6-mm holes in the for­mer, to di­rectly cool the voice coil. In ad­di­tion, there are vent holes in the top and back plates, as well as the cen­ter pole. When it's all said and done, there is enough cool­ing avail­able to al­low a power rat­ing of 800 watts for the E 30 KX.

Af­ter a break-in pe­riod* to nor­mal­ize the driver's sus­pen­sion, I in­stalled the E 30 KX in a 1.3-cu­bic­foot sealed en­clo­sure. Af­ter get­ting it con­nected to my ref­er­ence sys­tem, I be­gan di­al­ing in the cross- over and gain set­tings. I found that this woofer had sig­nif­i­cantly more high fre­quency out­put than many com­pet­i­tive woofers, and be­cause of this, I pre­ferred to use a steeper -24 dB cross­over slope. I should note here that this is largely a mat­ter of per­sonal taste, and oth­ers may pre­fer the ad­di­tional higher fre­quency out­put, and choose a -12 dB cross­over. Bear in mind though that the higher the fre­quency you per­mit a woofer to re­pro­duce, the eas­ier it will be to lo­cate where the woofer is placed in the ve­hi­cle. This makes it hard to get the “bass in the wind­shield” im­age that so many lis­ten­ers pre­fer.

(You don't need to break-in the woofer when you buy it, a few days of lis­ten­ing to it will do the same thing. I sim­ply break-in all loud­speak­ers be­fore do­ing crit­i­cal lis­ten­ing or mea­sure­ments, just for con­sis­tency and ac­cu­racy in the in­for­ma­tion) ~Garry

Once ev­ery­thing was set, it didn't take much more than the first track or two to thor­oughly be im­pressed with the sound qual­ity and over­all ex­cel­lent tonal­ity the woofer pro­vides. The very bot­tom

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