New Toys: Reftone Speakers LD-10 Replacement Woofer

The Reftone LD-10 is a replacement woofer for the ubiquitous Yamaha NS-10m. They are not a copy of the NS-10m driver, but are the same size to retrofit, more robust, and reproduce the bass frequencies better than the original factory woofers.

Mixing music on a pair of NS-10m is an acquired skill. My original 50-watt Yamahas are still great for checking mixes at lower volumes on consumer grade Hi-Fi speakers—a kind of “lowest common denominator” reality check. Confidence is high; I know that when my mix sounds good on them, it will sound great anywhere and on any system.

The acquired skill comes with knowing how much and deep the bass actually is in your mix; NS-10m have always been light in low frequency reproduction. Modern music is full-range and nowadays there is more emphasis on the production and sound of the low frequencies. Now the bass sound and its balance relative to the rest of the music is more critical than ever. A pair of NS-10s with a new LD-10 woofers installed is essential for me.

Just replacing the tired old white cone woofers in my original NS10ms with a pair of Reftone LD-10s has been a wonderful change. It was also the easiest modification I’ve done to any of my gear in my studio! I have the same basic sound of the NS-10m but I can hear the bass much better—even some of the subsonic information!

Reftone makes the 7-inch, 60-watt LD-10 for every version of the NS-10 and just about any of the knockoffs out there. They are also available in two cone colors: LD-10G ($359 tested here) has a gray cone, while the Special Edition LD-10B ($379) comes with a black cone. This is an awesome upgrade!