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  1. #1
    Forum Regular
    Join Date
    Jun 2003

    Thumbs up Adire Rava a good choice in sub vs other (more $$$ commercial brands??

    I have a 13 x 40 ft room (actually my living room stops at 18 ft but continues
    past the sofa into the open kitchen, hence the longer measurement).
    with 9 ft ceilings.

    Listening: rock, jazz, some classical and an equal amt of HT
    BUT since I rent I don't want the foundations to shake as if I do
    the only thing shaking will be my knees with anxiety after I receive an eviction notice

    My equipment: Unico (2 channel) INTEGRATED hybrid tube/SS amp by Unison
    Research modded by chris johnson of parts connexion (not parts express)
    in oakville ont, a sony 999es dvd/sacd player modded by audience av
    and a pair if Devor Fidelity Gibbon 8 speakers (ported, floor standing)

    My bud disses anything not of huge brandname or rated highly Stereophile
    so only suggests REL as an amp...I'm seriously looking at the Adire Audio line, esp
    getting a PAIR of the Rava subs....but don't know if I should wait for some newer Daeva (?) line to come out or get the SE version of the Rava.
    I will be buying a Denon 3903 or 3805 multichannel receiver (7.1 x 110 watts/channel)
    as I also have a pair of Mission 731 pro bookshelf speakers (for the rear).

    My system is pretty high quality (esp after the mods) and so want a very high quality sub...the problem with the Adire line is, of course, with a cheap price you think...somewhat
    cheap performance (although I have read just the opposite...but how many of the Adire believers have had more expensive subs (ie REL Storm III, which i am also considering buying used) to make such a statement (I'm not knocking anyone here....just would love to hear from some who've done actual rava comparisons with other higher retailed models.
    (i guess part of it is to shut up my friend who suffers from an incurable bout of brandinitis...he even dissed my devore fidelty gibbon 8 speakers as 'no name' and suggested only his (stereophile approved) B&W line.

    Look forward to hearing from you.

    Vancouver BC
    Host City, 2010 Winter Olympics

  2. #2
    Forum Regular
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    I don't have personal experience with the Rava, but I do have a custom made sub built with the Adire Tempest driver in a 21" cube enclosure. I've compared this one to the Paradigm Servo 15 and the performance is similar. The price is, however, is not. I paid about $900 Cdn delivered for my sub; the Paradigm new is about $2200.

    I believe there is a relatively local guy who does Adire products. Check out their website at The guy's name is Bob Reimer. He even helped me out a year after the sale when I blew out the sub's fuse.

  3. #3
    Forum Regular
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Maybe you simply need more focus and less concern for hype and opinion ? Reviews are always "positive", and should only be given weight when the reviewer seems so positively excited that he probably messed his pants.

    I find it best to select the basic DESIGN of the desired piece of equipment that will meet my priorities. Of course, purchasing used equipment can ease one into ownership in the more expensive categories.

    Powered woofers and powered subwoofers usually come in one of three flavors and corresponding price ranges:

    Ported/ Bass Reflex - Usually the greatest efficiency and output for a given size, power, and price but the tradeoff is a less distinct bass reproduction. Excellent for HT-only where your eyes will dominate you ears anyway.

    Acoustic Suspension - Less efficiency and output for a given size, power, and price when compared to Ported/ Bass Reflex but the tradeoff is a noticeably more distinct bass reproduction. Excellent for Audio-only as well as HT-only [where your eyes will dominate you ears anyway].

    Servo-feedback Controlled Acoustic Suspension - The same efficiency and output for a given size and power when compared to NON-Servo-feedback Controlled Acoustic Suspension unit, but you get the most distinct bass reproduction. However, more expensive when compared to NON-Servo-feedback Controlled Acoustic Suspension unit. This is where a USED purchase is worth considering: I have bought a nice Velodyne Servo-15 for $700, and I believe one can do just as well on a used Paradigm Servo-15.

  4. #4
    Silence of the spam Site Moderator Geoffcin's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003
    If your going to be using the sub for music, and you want the most seamless integration with your mains, then I would recommend a servo sub. I did hear a pair of isobaric subs mated to Magnepan 20r's that was just as seamless, but they were very expensive, and passive, so you would have to buy an amp in addition.
    Ming Da MC34-AB 75wpc
    PS Audio Classic 250. 500wpc into 4 ohms.
    PS Audio 4.5 preamp,
    Marantz 6170 TT Shure M97e cart.
    Arcam Alpha 9 CD.- 24 bit dCS Ring DAC.
    Magnepan 3.6r speakers Oak/black,

  5. #5
    Forum Regular
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    13 x 40 x 9 = almost 4700 cubic feet. To me, even dual Ravas will not be enough. You will be looking at something close to the SVS PB1-Plus or dual HSU VTF-3s. Perhaps a single or pair of used VMPS Larger Subwoofers with the Megawoofer option may be more to your liking or a used Paradigm Servo 15.

  6. #6

    Tuning your sub is key

    I don't agree entirely with the idea that a ported or bass reflex design has less distinct bass reproduction that an acoustic suspension one. They are different, to be sure, but an excellent bass reflex sub can be tuned to be very exact and musical. The key is tuning. I won't deny that I spent quite some time with my SPL meter setting up my SVS sub in just the right location and at just the right settings. This was also because my mains emphasize the mids and high frequencies instead of the lows, but that is how I wanted it. If you can afford it, I highly recommend the ICBM from Outlaw Audio, perhaps the single most important addition I ever made.

    For your room, I agree with Bryan that you should consider a pair of subs. If you go with SVS, you can get a pair of passive CS-Ultra Subs with a 1000W amp to drive them for just over $2K USD (cables included!). Add a $250 ICBM between your preamp and your amp, and you will have something nothing in that price range can touch. If money is tight and you have an old amp laying around, consider a single passive 16-46CS Sub for less than $480. If you tune your system just right, it will still make all your friends drool, even when you are listening to Handel at low volume.

  7. #7
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    SF Bay Area
    I agree with nightflier, how you tune the sub is very much key to how it will ultimately sound. In most rooms, I feel that a parametric EQ is absolutely essential because standing waves at low frequencies are very common. This can create an excessively boomy sound with ANY subwoofer, and the parametric EQ is the most cost effective way to control them. Once you get the actual in-room frequency characteristics of the sub as close to flat as possible, then it's that much easier to integrate it with the mains. That's why I think that the general characteristics of the subwoofer's design are only part of what you need to consider. It doesn't matter how well a sub is designed, or what type of cabinet it has, if the room acoustics are a problem. And with most small or medium sized rooms, the room acoustics will pose a problem for the low frequencies, and make ANY subwoofer not perform at its best.

    Adire has an excellent reputation among DIY hobbyists, and in actuality, their main market remains just selling drivers and other parts for making your own subwoofers (they also do contract design work for other companies). They've made several different subwoofer designs (you can look at some of them in downloadable papers), but market very few finished subwoofers. I believe that their Washington facility only has 15 employees, and the finished subwoofers and speakers are the only things that they actually assemble there. The Rava is the only preassembled model that they keep in inventory, all of the other speakers that they market are built to order, and even with the Rava you can specify modifications if you have a certain type of specification that you're looking for. Their drivers and other components are made by contract manufacturers (their drivers are U.S. made BTW).

    I wouldn't let the low price sway you, the Rava is worth considering. Your room is a bit large, but the Shiva driver that's on the Rava moves a LOT of air, so it very well might be enough. You're really the primary judge of how much bass you really need (in my smaller room, I know that two Ravas would be overkill). The in-room response on a Rava (in my room after equalization) is pretty much flat all the way down to 25 Hz with decent output down to 20 Hz. Subjectively, it's pretty tight and really shines with acoustic music, but still has excellent depth for HT sources.

    But, I don't have enough exposure to more expensive subs to tell you how the Rava would directly compare. Still though, I firmly believe that no matter what subwoofer you go with, a properly tuned Rava can and will outperform much more expensive models that have not been properly setup and equalized.

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