Velodyne Impact-12 review

Velodyne's Impact-12 is good enough to earn five stars and is ideal for many buyers Tested at £365.00

What Hi-Fi? Verdict

Good enough to earn five stars and ideal for many buyers – but not a true all-rounder


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    Formidable bass depth for its price

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    Musically, not the best in this test

Why you can trust What Hi-Fi? Our expert team reviews products in dedicated test rooms, to help you make the best choice for your budget. Find out more about how we test.

There ain't no substitute for cubic inches, or so our American cousins would have it – and in subwoofer terms, here's your proof.

American brand Velodyne can readily deliver great bass from a small enclosure, but with its Impact-12, it's adopted a more traditional approach.

This is a big ol'box designed to deliver big ol' bass, the cabinet being some 12cm deeper than the Tannoy TS-12, even though it's fitted with a similarly hefty 30cm drive unit.

In action, the Velodyne sounds reminiscent of one of its forebears, the CHT-12R. It serves up no-fuss, max-fun bass, its extension and sheer sofa-shuddering weight eclipsing even the excellent B&W ASW610.

However, switch to music listening, and there's a subtle lack of fluidity to its approach, a tangible slowness that hinders the attacking drive of Audioslave's Revelations.

That makes this fine sub more of a movie than a music classic.

What Hi-Fi?

What Hi-Fi?, founded in 1976, is the world's leading independent guide to buying and owning hi-fi and home entertainment products. Our comprehensive tests help you buy the very best for your money, with our advice sections giving you step-by-step information on how to get even more from your music and movies. Everything is tested by our dedicated team of in-house reviewers in our custom-built test rooms in London, Reading and Bath. Our coveted five-star rating and Awards are recognised all over the world as the ultimate seal of approval, so you can buy with absolute confidence.

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