Am­pli­fied Sub­woofer Sys­tem Re­view

Pasmag (USA) - - Contents -

Pow­ered sub­woofer en­clo­sure

Let’s face it, lis­ten­ing to mu­sic with­out some de­cent bass just isn’t much fun. As I heard one salesman say, “Un­less all you lis­ten to is talk ra­dio, you ab­so­lutely need a sub!”

Not ev­ery­one has the room how­ever, or wants to see a bulky woofer en­clo­sure ev­ery time they open the trunk. What’s needed here is some­thing un­ob­tru­sive and eas­ily con­cealed. If that sounds like what you need, I have good news: the folks at Di­a­mond Au­dio have a so­lu­tion.

By in­cor­po­rat­ing an am­pli­fier, sub­woofer and pas­sive ra­di­a­tor all into one cast-alu­minum chas­sis, Di­a­mond has a bril­liant small and shal­low 10-inch sub­woofer sys­tem, called the DPAS10.


The com­plete sys­tem is in­cred­i­bly small, mea­sur­ing just 14.375 x 9.875 x 3 inches! With such a small foot­print and very low height, the unit should fit be­hind the seat of even the tight­est pick-up cabs or un­der the seat of most cars. The cabi­net is con­structed al­most en­tirely of solid ex­truded alu­minum for strength and a low res­o­nant fre­quency, and be­cause of the ex­truded alu­minum en­clo­sure design, the en­clo­sure does dou­ble duty as the am­pli­fier’s heatsink. Thanks to the high ef­fi­ciency Class-D design, the am­pli­fier draws less cur­rent and gen­er­ates less heat than a con­ven­tional am­pli­fier.

An ul­tra-slim-pro­file woofer that was specif­i­cally de­signed for this prod­uct is uti­lized, and it is driven by the 150-watt built-in am­pli­fier. Like the woofer, the am­pli­fier has also been de­signed specif­i­cally for op­ti­mum per­for­mance in this en­clo­sure with this woofer.

All of the con­trols and con­nec-

tions are lo­cated on one end of the amp, with the op­po­site end used for the out­put of a clev­erly in­te­grated pas­sive ra­di­a­tor to aug­ment the sys­tem’s out­put via a port open­ing in the end of the hous­ing. The Di­a­mond Au­dio DPAS10 can be driven with ei­ther high-level sig­nal di­rectly from the car’s ra­dio or con­ven­tional RCA in­puts. Power con­nec­tions are made via set screw-type ter­mi­nals that will ac­cept up to eight-gauge ca­ble. There is also the choice of a con­ven­tional re­mote turn-on wire, or for com­pat­i­bil­ity in vir­tu­ally any sys­tem, the unit is also equipped with sig­nal sens­ing turn-on func­tion­al­ity.

In­stal­la­tion is a sim­ple mat­ter of choos­ing a lo­ca­tion, run­ning power, ground and in­put sig­nal wires and then tun­ing it for the ve­hi­cle. Tun­ing is ac­com­plished via a full set of con­trols in­clud­ing gain, vari­able cross­over with a range of 80 to 150 Hz, a bass boost func­tion with up to 12 dB of avail­able boost, and a 0-180-de­gree phase switch.


With the DPAS10 con­nected to my ref­er­ence sys­tem, I sit down to see how it will per­form. My ex­pec­ta­tions are that it will be de­cent, but not like a “real” sub­woofer. I fig­ure you sim­ply can’t ex­pect big, rich bass from a com­plete woofer sys­tem that is smaller than some am­pli­fiers. How­ever, af­ter get­ting it con­nected and tuned to suit my room and the rest of my sys­tem, I’m quite sur­prised at the over­all qual­ity of the sound.

I be­gin with Level 42’s World Ma­chine and a cou­ple of my fa­vorite tracks from Yello’s Es­sen­tial. On these in­ten­tion­ally bass-heavy tracks, the diminu­tive woofer sys­tem pro­vides good out­put, lower fre­quency out­put than I ex­pected, and han­dles the built-in power well. I move on to some clas­sic rock tracks from Rush, Deep Purple and The Who. Lis­ten­ing to the late great John En­twistle and his mind-bend­ing, gi­ant bass lines is a real treat, and you can eas­ily for­get you are lis­ten­ing to a very dis­creet sub­woofer sys­tem. The Di­a­mond sys­tem sounds re­ally good!

As you ex­pect, the laws of physics still ap­ply, so the sys­tem lacks a lit­tle over­all out­put when com­pared to a big woofer in a big box with a big amp, but the per­for­mance it de­liv­ers is a hell of a lot bet­ter than hav­ing no woofer at all. Over­all, I’m quite im­pressed with the sonic per­for­mance of the woofer and I think it will sur­prise more than a few peo­ple when heard in a car, where the ve­hi­cle’s trans­fer func­tion will in­crease the out­put of the low­est oc­taves.


The Di­a­mond Au­dio DPAS10 pow­ered woofer is a good choice where space is very lim­ited, or you sim­ply don’t want to see the source of the bass. Be­cause of its size, it can be eas­ily hid­den in a trunk, or even bet­ter, un­der a seat. Make no mis­take, if you are try­ing to have your bass heard a block away, this sys­tem isn’t go­ing to sat­isfy you, but if you sim­ply value sound qual­ity with­out ob­tru­sive equip­ment and need a prod­uct that has great flex­i­bil­ity in con­nec­tions and tun­ing abil­ity, this might be the per­fect choice.


Not enough space for some bass? Non­sense. As long as they aren't bolted to the floor, the DPAS10 can fit un­der your


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