The M8 may not be a stunner in terms of visual appeal, but its build quality is topnotch and every bit what you'd expect from an Outlaw product
The M8 is simple to place, simple to connect and simple to set up, which is a great thing for novices to the hobby and/or those looking to add a bit of trouble-free bass to their favorite music and/or movies.
The M8 may not be capable of shaking your rafters, but that doesn't mean it doesn't possess a fair amount of grunt. More importantly, its bass is rather speedy and textural, two things you often want more than sheer punch.
If you're willing to spend the extra $100 for an outboard parametric EQ like the Behringer Feedback Destroyer, and utilize a free program like Room EQ Wizard, it is possible to get the M8 to perform at an even higher level than its basic controls will otherwise allow. Low Points
There are subwoofers available direct that cost a little more (say $50), which offer more in terms of looks than the M8 does.
Those with large rooms and/or a tendency to want to overdo it when it comes to bass may want to look elsewhere in Outlaw's stable of subwoofers, specifically at either the LFM-1 Plus or LFM-1 EX.
I kind of wish the M8 had cheap five-way binding posts, as opposed to push-pin-style posts, as I feel the latter are somewhat limiting for those who may have to rely on them. Competition and Comparisons
There is no shortage of affordable subwoofer options available to consumers today. While I consider Outlaw to be a leader in the marketplace, the company does have some competition. Some notable competitors off the top of my head include Aperion Audio's Bravus 8A subwoofer
($349), HSU Research's STF-1 ($299) and Episode's CUB8 subwoofer
($399). All are solid performers and great value for your money, though the M8 is the least expensive of the bunch and manages to post similar, if not identical, specs as the aforementioned subs. It just isn't as pretty, in my humble opinion, as either the Aperion or Episode offering, which may or may not be a factor in your ultimate decision. For more on these subwoofers and others like them, please visit Home Theater Review's Subwoofer page
There's little fault with the M8 subwoofer's performance, provided you go into your demo of it with an open mind and realistic expectations. If you're looking to add a little low-end thump that is more than just the kind of one-note droning you hear from most poorly-designed affordable subwoofers, then the M8 is for you. If you're looking to shake your fillings from your molars, then the M8 isn't going to be for you. What the M8 has going for it is simplicity; it's simple to integrate, simple to dial in and easy to enjoy. For those with modest systems or spaces, the M8 is a great place to start your subwoofer journey and, for many, it may be the last stop, too. It's a fun little sub and definitely worth your attention.