Dayton SD215A-88 DVC Subwoofer Review

Dayton SD215A-88
8″ DVC Subwoofer

Frequency Response in 24 liters Bass Reflex. Baffle Width=13-1/2″

Mic at 36 ins • Impulse Window=5ms • No Smoothing applied

Blue plot = Nearfield

Brown plot=Port Output. Port DIA=2″, L=6-1/2″

Bass Reflex Modeling

SD215A-88 Bass

This is the 3rd Dayton 8″ that I’m listening to in succession. I was startled at how “fast” this woofer is. She has the attack of the DS215 but the deeper bass of the DA215. I thought to myself what a good find this is. The cheapest of the three and with the best bass. That was until I started to play the SD215A-88 louder.

Suddenly, the bass went mushy. I turned down the volume and she sounded great again. Turned up the volume once more and the same mushy bass. After I collected myself, I realized that what I heard was power compression. All woofers suffer from power compression but with the SD215A-88, you don’t have to play very loud for it to happen. And if you continue to pump more power into her, you’ll hear the voice coil former banging on the rear plate.

According to Dayton’s specs, her power handling is 80W RMS and 160W in maximum power handling. No way was I even close to 80W and the SD215A-88 went into power compression. i would avoid this woofer unless one is prepared to always play at low volume which is ridiculous. As for using her in a 2-way, forget it. Don’t even consider it.

Just to be sure, I measured the SD215 again. This is with the voice coil connected in parallel (4Ω). The impedance plot looks normal. So, it’s not my amplifier’s over-current circuitry activating due to low ohms. Strange woofer.