Aperion Audio Bravus II 12D Subwoofer Review

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admin

Audioholics Robot
Staff member
The Aperion Audio Bravus II 12D is a relatively compact (15.5in^3) 650 watt powered subwoofer with one active and dual 12†passive drivers. Aesthetically, the Bravus II 12D is the best looking subwoofer we've seen for under $1k. Thanks to its strong amp and well executed passive radiator system, the Bravus II 12D is able to achieve real output down to 25Hz not typical of similar sized sealed or ported enclosures. Though it lacks some of the bells and whistles of competitor designs, it makes up for it with solid performance earning our "Large Room" Bassaholic rating. At $899 delivered to your door in a premium high gloss finish with a risk free 30 day trial period, we highly recommend you give it a try!


Discuss "Aperion Audio Bravus II 12D Subwoofer Review" here. Read the article.
 
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shadyJ

Speaker of the House
Staff member
This is very respectable performance for the dollar, in my opinion, with a nice flat FR. It might not quite have the extension of the other 12"s, but its output is roughly on par, and when you factor in its size and appearance, I think this sub would be very easy to live with. It looks especially recommendable for someone who doesn't want a gigantic subwoofer.
 
Steve81

Steve81

Audioholics Five-0
This is very respectable performance for the dollar, in my opinion, with a nice flat FR. It might not quite have the extension of the other 12"s, but its output is roughly on par, and when you factor in its size and appearance, I think this sub would be very easy to live with. It looks especially recommendable for someone who doesn't want a gigantic subwoofer.
Agree. It's not fair to compare something like this to the previously tested Outlaw LFM 1 EX or SVS PB12 NSD. Of the subs reviewed, I think the Klipsch SW-311 is probably the closest competitor and I'd say the Aperion compares reasonably favorably.
 
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shadyJ

Speaker of the House
Staff member
On the contrary, I think it is fair to compare them, and I think this one holds it own pretty well. It isn't a whole lot more expensive, and it does look nicer, and its output matches the LFM at certain points while surpassing the PB12 at others. It just doesn't dig quite as deep, but you are only missing 5 hertz against the PB12 and LFM (in two ports mode), if you ask me that isn't bad at all, especially when you consider the size of the sub. I think Aperion made a good decision between where to tune this and how big to make it, and it's a sensible compromise.
 
Steve81

Steve81

Audioholics Five-0
On the contrary, I think it is fair to compare them, and I think this one holds it own pretty well. It isn't a whole lot more expensive, and it does look nicer, and its output matches the LFM at certain points while surpassing the PB12 at others. It just doesn't dig quite as deep, but you are only missing 5 hertz against the PB12 and LFM (in two ports mode), if you ask me that isn't bad at all, especially when you consider the size of the sub. I think Aperion made a good decision between where to tune this and how big to make it, and it's a sensible compromise.
I agree, the Aperion does make smart compromises; as I've said before, most people would be quite happy with good output down to 32Hz or so because the fact of the matter is, few theaters do a whit better. I wouldn't have a problem recommending it to someone looking for a smaller subwoofer.

OTOH, for someone that can accommodate a larger sub, it wouldn't make my list; you can't fight physics as the results show. From about 30Hz on down, clean output capability is declining quickly. The LFM1 can deliver 4.5 to 7.1dB more clean output than the Aperion at 25Hz, and you know as well as I do that's pretty significant difference in pretty critical band for movie effects. Further, the LFM-1 can deliver credible output at 16Hz, whereas 25Hz is the last point worth mentioning for the 12D. That's a 2/3 of an octave. It doesn't sound like a lot just looking at the numbers, but if you're a guy who likes his action flicks, it's a difference you can readily feel.
 
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gene

gene

Audioholics Master Chief
Administrator
Compared to JL f110!

Wow,

I just compared Josh's sweep data for the Bravus II 12D and its favorable to the data I collected for the JL Audio f110 that costs considerably more. I'd say this is one small sub for mankind, one large leap for small subwoofer design!
 
Steve81

Steve81

Audioholics Five-0
Wow,

I just compared Josh's sweep data for the Bravus II 12D and its favorable to the data I collected for the JL Audio f110 that costs considerably more. I'd say this is one small sub for mankind, one large leap for small subwoofer design!
Not too shabby for the $$$. The Aperion also more than holds its own against the competitively priced SB12-NSD.
 
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shadyJ

Speaker of the House
Staff member
I don't see that as surprising. Small subwoofers are just a losing battle against physics. Not to take anything away from the Aperion, but, to me, that doesn't signify what a great value the Bravus sub is as much as it says what a poor value the JL Audio sub is, at least as far as SPL/$. It should also be mentioned that the JL Audio sub has a bunch of fancy features like the ARO eq where the Bravus is pretty light on extras. But yeah, I'd much rather have the Aperion sub. A sealed 10" is going to be coughing up blood trying to output anything below 30 hz, however watching it try has to be an amusing sight.
 
Marshall_Guthrie

Marshall_Guthrie

Audioholics Videographer Extraordinaire
I spent some extended time with the older Bravus 8D and I'd say Aperion did everything right in the redesign. Better performance and no cumbersome digital setup. I prefer the simplicity of knobs and modern AVRs take care of crossover, EQ, and everything else that needs to be done during setup. If you're using a modern AVR, the sub really needs a level control, and that's it.

I'd say that this new sub hits the mark on looks and performance for the more aesthetically sensitive. And, they're based in Portland, just 1.5 hours up the road from me...
 
F

Funboy

Audioholic Intern
Rythmik F12

How about a comparison to the Rythmik F12. Similar price, size, and more importantly, the F12 is one of the few small subwoofers that claim to reach that low. Can't decide between the two based on specs without a shootout!
 
KEW

KEW

Audioholic Overlord
Two questions on the review:
1) Why no Waterfall decay chart?
2) Can you add the Max and Min output curves to the CEA2010 2 meter Groundplane RMS Results?

Were these accidentally omitted or has the test data changed for this and future sub reviews?

Thanks,
Kurt
 
Marshall_Guthrie

Marshall_Guthrie

Audioholics Videographer Extraordinaire
How about a comparison to the Rythmik F12. Similar price, size, and more importantly, the F12 is one of the few small subwoofers that claim to reach that low. Can't decide between the two based on specs without a shootout!
Actually the F12 claims 14hz with posted measurements showing -3dB at that point. Don't know what the overall output at that measurement is.
 
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shadyJ

Speaker of the House
Staff member
How about a comparison to the Rythmik F12. Similar price, size, and more importantly, the F12 is one of the few small subwoofers that claim to reach that low. Can't decide between the two based on specs without a shootout!
The F12 may reach 14 hz, but probably not very loudly. I wouldn't pay much attention to that spec. If you want loud and low, you need to get a ported sub. The only way a sealed sub is going to dig deep with any substantial amount of output is if your room acoustics adds on a lot of gain. I'm guessing the Rythmik is going to start losing output in the low frequencies at a higher point than the Aperion, but it will lose output at a more gradual rate as you go lower in frequency. So the Aperion might have a lot more output at 25 hz but loses loudness rapidly below that, whereas the Rythmik won't match it at 25 hz but will still be making noise below the point the Aperion's output is totally gone.
 
Ricci

Ricci

Bassaholic
Two questions on the review:
1) Why no Waterfall decay chart?
2) Can you add the Max and Min output curves to the CEA2010 2 meter Groundplane RMS Results?

Were these accidentally omitted or has the test data changed for this and future sub reviews?

Thanks,
Kurt

These will no longer be included in the AH reviews in an effort to conserve a little space. If there is an issue shown in the waterfall it will usually show up in the group delay chart or vice versa. Hence including just the GD from now on.

The composite maximum and minimum cea2010 and sweep output results haven't been in the reviews in some time. They caused a lot of confusion for some and were constantly needing updated also. Additionally you had $500 units being compared with $9000 units and units that take up 1 cubic foot of volume compared with others that use 12 cubic foot. Some of those comparisons are not competing products in a real sense.
 
theJman

theJman

Audioholic Chief
If you want loud and low, you need to get a ported sub. The only way a sealed sub is going to dig deep with any substantial amount of output is if your room acoustics adds on a lot of gain.
Depends a lot upon what the port tuning is. Generally, output below tune tends to get a little sloppy. Personally, for loud and low I'll take a properly tuned acoustic suspension sub every time.
 
theJman

theJman

Audioholic Chief
These will no longer be included in the AH reviews in an effort to conserve a little space.
It's a shame that became a casualty. I'm not certain about anyone else, but I found the waterfall to be of particular importance. Generally speaking, if the waterfall looked like garbage the sub sounded like garbage. Being a fan of clean, crisp and precise bass, I always found great value in what the waterfall test showed.

To me it doesn't seem as though one additional graph would constitute a space issue, so if at all possible I would love to see that included in all sub tests again.
 
Ricci

Ricci

Bassaholic
Jim,

See my comment about the waterfall and group delay above. ;)
 
3db

3db

Audioholic Overlord
I don't know what all the excitement is about this sub. I think its performance for the money is not all that great. The PSB300 fro $100 more has a much flatter frequency response and digs a little deeper. Its finish is not nearly as nice I will admit.

http://www.hometheater.com/images/1012psbsp.meas.jpg]/img].

The Outlaw LFM1-EX slays both the PSB300 and the Aperion for $250 less. If given my choices, I would take the Outlaw over the Aperion.
 
Steve81

Steve81

Audioholics Five-0
I don't know what all the excitement is about this sub. I think its performance for the money is not all that great...If given my choices, I would take the Outlaw over the Aperion.
Sure, if you can fit the Outlaw, it's a much better option. But keep in mind, the Aperion is a 15.5" cube. For what it is, it performs quite well.
 
theJman

theJman

Audioholic Chief
See my comment about the waterfall and group delay above. ;)
You mean the one were you said "If there is an issue shown in the waterfall it will usually show up in the group delay chart or vice versa"? If so, that's what actually prompted my original post. :p

The 'usually will show up' part is a bit of a concern, but the biggest issue I guess is the waterfall is easier for me to read/decipher. That, along with the distortion and compression tests, are usually the first ones I look at, because combined I think they give a good picture of the basic functionality of the sub.
 
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