Published On: October 20, 2008

JL Audio Fathom f112 Subwoofer Reviewed

Published On: October 20, 2008

JL Audio Fathom f112 Subwoofer Reviewed

The driver on the JL Audio Fathom f112 is a "modern marvel." Our reviewer found that it has "astonishing three-inch excursion and can rock you to your soul." It may cost a few dollars more, but "it is also fast, deep and has the spank to get you as low (and as loud) as you might want to go for your music and movies"

jl-audio-fathom-f112.jpgJL Audio, a leader in car audio products, has made a bold, high-end statement in the audiophile and home theater market with a number of very high-performance and high-dollar subwoofers that are designed to quite simply rock your world.  The JL Audio Fathom f112 is a $2,200 ($2,400 with a gloss black finish) subwoofer that packs a 12-inch driver and a whopping 1500 watts of power.  It weights over 115 pounds, which is absurd, considering this isn't the largest subwoofer you have ever seen.  Amazingly, it is about half of the weight of its bigger brother, the Gotham.  Overall, all of JL Audio's subs are built to unbelievable tolerances.

Additional Resources

Read audiophile subwoofer reviews from the likes of B&W, Paradigm, Sunfire and others.
Read a review of the JL Audio Gotham Subwoofer.

The JL Audio Fathom f112's controls are somewhat reminiscent of a modern-day Marshall guitar, amp including a one-quarter-inch jack for the setup mic used for the room correction on the woofer.  These DSP-based EQ systems have gotten very sophisticated these days and, within minutes, the average consumer has a chance to elicit room-optimized sound from his or her woofer without a degree in acoustics or $50,000 in test equipment.

The driver on the JL Audio Fathom f112 is a modern marvel.  It has an astonishing three-inch excursion and can rock you to your soul.  The measured response of the woofer is to a low but not subsonic level of 24 Hz, but the effect seems lower when you listen to the woofer.

Read about the high points and the low points of the Fathom f112 on Page 2.

jl-audio-fathom-f112.jpgHigh Points
• Power, power and more power is this subwoofer's calling card.  The JL Audio Fathom f112 goes low and loud.

The build quality is impressive, which will come as a surprise for some
who think a JL home theater subwoofer is nothing more than some meth
addict's backseat car audio subwoofer box covered with cheap, stained
carpet.  This subwoofer is truly a fine component.
• Not all woofers today have room correction, but JL Audio's is easy to use and effective.

Low Points
• Be careful where you place the woofer as, at 115 pounds, you can do damage to floors and/or furniture, to say nothing of seriously pissing off the neighbors if you live with any shared walls.
• Other high-end woofer manufacturers offer more finish options beyond black and gloss black. Think MartinLogan's custom shop or Wilson painting their woofers in PPG car paint colors. I would pay more for this woofer in a better color in the event it couldn't be hidden in my room somewhere.

Conclusion
This subwoofer is a total monster.  Powerful and able to move some serious air, the JL Audio Fathom f112 at its price is a killer.  Yes, it's an expensive woofer, but it also is fast, deep and has the spank to get you as low (and as loud) as you ever might want to go for your music and movies.

Additional Resources
Read audiophile subwoofer reviews from the likes of B&W, Paradigm, Sunfire and others.
Read a review of the JL Audio Gotham Subwoofer.

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