For those who prefer tremendous bass from small enclosures, the team at ARC Audio in Modesto, California, has a solution and we have the product review. The ARC Audio A-Series shallow-mount subwoofers come in 10- and 12-inch diameters, with dual 2- or 4-ohm voice coils to choose from.
They may also deliver astonishingly articulate and detailed bass from settings where traditional full-size subwoofers simply won’t fit. We’re confident that once you’ve heard ARC Audio’s Ford Flex with three A10s in a 1.3-cubic-foot enclosure, you’ll agree! Let’s have a look at them.
The A-Series subwoofers are available in dual 2- and dual 4-ohm voice coil designs in 10- and 12-inch diameters. The subwoofers are built on a deep-draw, heavy-gauge stamped-steel chassis with a fine-textured Dark Charcoal Grey Powder Coat finish. Four huge open windows and four sets of twin spokes make up the frame. To increase the strength of the design and give it a cast-basket appearance, all of the opening edges are rolled over.
The twisted-pile polycotton and Nomex progressive spider are mounted on a custom-tooled, fiberglass-reinforced thermoplastic frame bolted to the back of the basket. Because this is a bespoke part, the driver can utilize a flat spider instead of a cupped one, which could cause linearity issues. The mounts for the pair of chrome-plated, spring-loaded terminals on opposing sides are also included in this spacer.
Spring-loaded chrome terminals recessed into the sides of the ARC Shallow Subwoofer making speaker wire connections straightforward.
The motor structure is formed by bolting the bottom plate with its integrated T-yoke and enormous cooling vent, as well as a large-diameter ceramic magnet and the 9.8-mm-thick top plate, to the center of the assembly. All of these parts, as well as the patented spider spacer, are held in place using high-strength, high-temperature adhesives, and mechanical fasteners, ensuring that nothing comes loose.
To ensure the linear operation and stable performance, the A-Series subwoofers have a huge cooling vent in the center of the T-yoke.
The A-Series subwoofers start with a spun-laced Nomex former surrounded by a Totoku triple-insulated copper voice coil winding in terms of soft parts (components that move forward and back to produce sound). The ARC Audio transducer design team is dedicated to ensuring that their products meet (and exceed) thermal power handling criteria, so they always go above and beyond – hence the premium shielded copper conductors. It’s also worth mentioning that the A12 drivers have a 3-inch diameter voice coil compared to the A10’s 2.5-inch. The difference in power handling between the 10s and 12s is explained by this.
The voice coil powers a progressive-taper, poly-injected pulp paper cone that is surprisingly stiff and well-damped for its size. The exposed face of the drivers is a reinforced polypropylene dust cap with the ARC Audio and A-Series insignia on the front. The surround is constructed of UV-treated polyether, which allows for a flexible connection that won’t dry out or be damaged by humidity. It’s worth noting that the compliance of polyether is less affected by temperature variations than that of other materials. You’ll still be able to enjoy your music if you live somewhere where it gets cold in the winter.
The use of adhesives is something that many companies ignore while creating and manufacturing subwoofers and speakers. To achieve a secure bond, ARC Audio cleans and laser-etches all surfaces to which adhesives will be applied. Furthermore, the assembly facility is temperature- and, more importantly, humidity-controlled to ensure the highest adhesion and dependability possible during the application and curing processes. Yes, a manufacturer can build speakers in a hot, humid, and dusty warehouse for a lot less money, but ensuring that the products manufactured there will stay intact is a dangerous undertaking.
The A-Series subwoofers are sealed to the face of the enclosure by a rubber gasket around the mounting flange.
With only a few watts of power, the A-Series subwoofers deliver exceptional output and efficiency. The 10-inch drivers have a continuous power rating of 250 watts and a maximum power rating of 500 watts. These values are increased to 300 and 600 watts, respectively, with the 12-inch drivers.
The A-Series subwoofers have a very low resonance frequency (about 25 to 26 Hz, depending on the type) and a very compliant (soft) suspension, according to Thiele/Small parameters. When utilized in tiny, sealed enclosures, the Qts values are in the middle of the range between low and high, resulting in a natural bump in response. If you have the space and want more low-frequency output, the drivers work fantastically in medium-sized vented enclosures.
The A12D2’s predicted frequency response in 0.85 cubic foot (red), 1.0 cubic foot (yellow), and 1.25 cubic foot (green) enclosures with 250 watts of power.
The cone excursion values of the driver appear to be the most important factor for those looking at shallow-mount subwoofer specifications. Both the A10 and A12 subwoofers have an Xmax standard of 15.2 mm, according to our sources.
The subwoofers are a little taller than others in their class, with each size requiring a 3.77-inch installation depth. In addition, to avoid pressure build-up under the dust cap, your installer will want to leave some space behind the large cooling vent in the center of the T-yoke.
Drop by your local authorized ARC Audio outlet and inquire about the new A-Series subwoofers if you’re looking for a shallow-mount subwoofer system that will make listening to music much more enjoyable. The Dealer Locator on the ARC Audio website can help you find a retailer near you.