Epik Sentinel Subwoofer Review

Discussion in 'Subwoofers' started by admin, Dec 11, 2009.

  1. admin Audioholics Robot Staff Member

    admin
    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2004
    Messages:
    172
    Likes Received:
    1,612
    Epik Subwoofers is a relatively small, Internet-direct company that sells one type of product: subwoofers. Epik subwoofers are frequently recommended, praised and lauded on message boards and forums for their ability to deliver deep, impactful bass at comparatively low prices. The subject of this review is the Epik Sentinel: physically the smallest ported subwoofer offered by Epik. The description found on Epik's website promises "the most 20Hz output in the smallest possible cabinet." Epik also promises "musicality and sound quality that is found in similar subwoofers costing much more than the Sentinel." My experience is that the first statement holds true, but the second promise does not.
    [​IMG]

    Discuss "Epik Sentinel Subwoofer Review" here. Read the article.
  2. Matt34 Moderator

    Matt34
    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2005
    Messages:
    6,403
    Likes Received:
    2,817
    Location:
    Colorado
    Interesting review Clint, I liked that you were able to compare it to a sub I'm very familar with! What do you think is the culprit in the bass sounding "muddy"?





    Never say never Gov.:p
    http://forums.audioholics.com/forums/showthread.php?t=59281&highlight=Requested+Audioholics+review
  3. Ron Temple Senior Audioholic

    Ron Temple
    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2005
    Messages:
    677
    Likes Received:
    112
    Location:
    San Jose, CA
    Wow, not a very positive review. I'm sure some Sentinel owners are not going to agree. From all reports the suspension of that driver needs some time to open up as several have reported similar first impressions only to rave after a couple of weeks. I can't say if that would effect the overhang issue or not. It's helpful to get a direct comparison, but I wonder how the sub would respond to placement and outboard eq.
  4. Gov Senior Audioholic

    Gov
    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2006
    Messages:
    534
    Likes Received:
    93
    Location:
    NW Burbs of Chgo, IL USA
    Thanks for the review! Now Audioholics needs! to do a review of an 18 inch model. I would predict a different outcome :cool:
    Gov,
  5. GlocksRock Audioholic Spartan

    GlocksRock
    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2005
    Messages:
    6,184
    Likes Received:
    944
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    I thought audioholics didn't believe in speaker break in? Could it actaully be true?
  6. lsiberian Audioholic Overlord

    lsiberian
    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2008
    Messages:
    11,947
    Likes Received:
    3,092
    Location:
    On A Bridge in Fort Worth
    Well Gene wisely points out a lack of equipment to measure this, and I suspect that a FR graph may show us the issues here, but given the price I think this is not surprising. Still don't let this deter you if you are on a budget. I wonder if a lower crossover would help with sound. What crossover did you run it at Gene?
  7. Ron Temple Senior Audioholic

    Ron Temple
    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2005
    Messages:
    677
    Likes Received:
    112
    Location:
    San Jose, CA
    I'm iffy about that myself, but reports from folks that were at first displeased, then overjoyed make me wonder about the overbuilt motor and suspension on this driver. Some are comments from folks that have owned capable subs. So I'm openminded about Epik. I understand owner break in, but the attitude turnaround is pretty stark. Not trying to create an argument. I don't own Epik nor heard the Sentinel. I might come to the exact same conclusions as Clint. Just reporting what I've read from owners.
  8. Matt34 Moderator

    Matt34
    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2005
    Messages:
    6,403
    Likes Received:
    2,817
    Location:
    Colorado
    It does go against the grain from most of the private reviews I've read as well but I've only seen a couple that have done direct comparisons to other subs of equal value. I wonder because the sub is such a bottom dweller that it might cause the mid bass to sound conjested/muddy?
  9. Ron Temple Senior Audioholic

    Ron Temple
    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2005
    Messages:
    677
    Likes Received:
    112
    Location:
    San Jose, CA
    I could see room gain loading up the <30hz content and overshading the midbass. It happens in my room without some major cuts.
  10. KEW Audioholic Ninja

    KEW
    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2009
    Messages:
    4,589
    Likes Received:
    1,661
    Location:
    Jowjah
    Nice review, Rob!

    I thought the following was an exceptional insight into how music can affect us:

    "This affected the way I felt emotionally as I listened to the two different renditions presented by the Sentinel and the VTF-3 Mk.2. I will be very blunt here: with the Sentinel's sound, I felt slower and dumber. I began to feel a bit numb and I started to have difficultly concentrating. The VTF-3 Mk.2 more rapid stops after each beat made me feel more driven and alert."

    I know many athletes have their high energy "game music" to get psyched up before the game. I wonder if Tommy Smothers used to listen to inarticulate, mind-numbing music before his show to better get in synch with his role as the dumb brother?:)

    I have experienced gained alertness from music, but never given much consideration to the inverse. Maybe the more extreme lack of articulation typical of car audio ("Thumpa-Thumpa") is why so many find it annoying!
    KEW,
  11. eemichael83 Audiophyte

    eemichael83
    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2009
    Messages:
    1
    Likes Received:
    0
    "Throughout my listening tests, I frequently swapped out the Sentinel and positioned the VTF-3 Mk.2 in the exact same spot on the same Auralex GRAMMA."

    This statement discounts his entire review. I can not believe that a 'professional' subwoofer reviewer would even insist that two completely different subwoofers (one down-firing and rear ported, the other front firing and front slot ported) will respond with the room the same. It is possible that two different subs can have the same sweet spot, but it is very unlikely and you certainly can't assume so.

    Was there an EQ applied to the original HSU to provide a flat response and the same EQ was assumed to provide a flat response for the Epik? If so, this could actually make the response for the Epik worse than if the sub had no EQ at all!

    I wonder if the reviewer just pulled his mains out of the box without EQ-ing those as well? What a joke.
  12. Matt34 Moderator

    Matt34
    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2005
    Messages:
    6,403
    Likes Received:
    2,817
    Location:
    Colorado
    Very unlikely? Not according to my experinces, I've had all kind of subs from front slot vent, rear ported and sealed and I have only two specific places in my room where any of them would work, verified by my SMS-1. Bass is for the most part none directional.

    Clint isn't some fly by night reviewer, I'm sure he knows what are his room's sweet spots and their effects to a sub's response.
  13. shadyJ Audioholic Ninja

    shadyJ
    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2006
    Messages:
    3,101
    Likes Received:
    978
    I could see the orientation of the sub making a difference in the higher reaches of it frequency response, say around 80 hertz and above. But I wouldn't recommend using a sub above that range unless you had multiples. Otherwise the only way a sub will sound different from facing a different direction is if it's ports are blocked or hindered somehow. I doubt the reviewer made that mistake.

    I'm surprised the Sentinel could get that low in such a small enclosure. I would have guessed that the VTF would be able to get lower do to it's larger enclosure. With it's large and heavy motor and powerful amplifier, the cone of the Sentinel must get one hell of a workout when it is pushed.
  14. annunaki Moderator

    annunaki
    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2003
    Messages:
    4,308
    Likes Received:
    1,393
    Location:
    Wausau, WI
    Frequency response graph's of both subs may show more in this situation.

    It is entirely possible that it simply does suffer from overhang, that or the reviewer is not used to a driver capable of playing that deep. I would tend to suspect the former however.
    • Like Like x 1
  15. lsiberian Audioholic Overlord

    lsiberian
    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2008
    Messages:
    11,947
    Likes Received:
    3,092
    Location:
    On A Bridge in Fort Worth
    I'd say they are close enough that the difference would be insignificant. He gave the best review he could with his given situation and was right to be critical. But still this sub is a great home theater one. I'm sure most folks would be in love with it. Subs easily please in my experience.
  16. irish Enthusiast

    irish
    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2009
    Messages:
    24
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Las Vegas
    I'm not questioning yours or Clint's integrity but I would definitely discount a review that doesn't show the response graphs so that more info could be had. I also believe the difference in where they're ported might make a bit of a difference along with possible EQ settings. All in all I think it was a less than admirable attempt at a review of the Sentinel, and no I don't own one, but I do have 2 on the way ;)
  17. Matt34 Moderator

    Matt34
    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2005
    Messages:
    6,403
    Likes Received:
    2,817
    Location:
    Colorado
    I think I got the names mixed up. I just saw that the name changed to a Rob H. When I read the review I swear it had Clint doing the review....but your right, the FR graphs would be helpful.
  18. Ron Temple Senior Audioholic

    Ron Temple
    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2005
    Messages:
    677
    Likes Received:
    112
    Location:
    San Jose, CA
    I saw Clint's name there yesterday as well.
  19. cschang Audioholic Chief

    cschang
    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2003
    Messages:
    770
    Likes Received:
    242
    Response graphs won't tell you much in the way of decay or overhang.

    FR graphs would definitely be interesting, but if you heard more than a hand-full of different subs in a particular location in a room, you would get at least a bit of a grasp on the differences in the subs and the room interactions.

    That said, I have never heard an Epik sub, but I have a lot of experience with Hsu subs. Although they don't play the loudest, or the deepest, what they do play sounds excellent, and as good as any similar priced/configured sub I have heard.
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2009
  20. cschang Audioholic Chief

    cschang
    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2003
    Messages:
    770
    Likes Received:
    242
    Matt...I think this is spot on and a key thought.

Share This Page

  • rbhsound.com
  • BlueJeansCable.com
  • Emotiva.com
  • SVS Sound Subwoofers
  • Experience the Martin Logan Montis
  • CEDIA