Subs - looking for info.

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  • 11-30-2004, 05:59 PM
    izzyk
    Subs - looking for info.
    Who makes good subwoofers?? I don't really have any experience with home audio subs.

    I hear lots of controversy and mixed opinions but have been told to go for powered/active subs and to stay away from Bose Acoustimass.
  • 11-30-2004, 06:21 PM
    This Guy
    what you have been told for the most part, is correct. Although I don't have a problem with passive subs (not that many are made anymore). Take a look at SVS, HSU, Dayton, Adire Audio, B&W, Paradigm, and I believe there are a few more. All of those companies have relatively cheap but good for the money subs, as well as some higher end models that will blow your socks off.
  • 11-30-2004, 08:49 PM
    Woochifer
    Subwoofers are an area where you got plenty of very viable choices, and it's also the most frustrating decision because unlike with components or speakers, subwoofer comparisons cannot be done quickly and easily. Plus, because subwoofers work in the lowest frequencies, they are also by far the most susceptible to room variations, which make dealer demo room comparisons basically pointless.

    You want to go with a powered sub because bass notes hit a lot of extreme peaks, and it's better to have a dedicated amp handle that in order to relieve that burden from the receiver, especially since a lot of home theater receivers don't have a lot of power available to handle the demands from a subwoofer. Bose Acoustimass systems are not true subwoofers because the bass modules go up to about 250 Hz, which is well into the midrange and not desirable because ideally you want the bass to ONLY handle the frequencies below about 80 Hz or so, which is where sounds become more nondirectional. You can say the same thing about most other compact sub/sat systems, except that they cost a lot less than what Bose charges for their systems.

    A true subwoofer is designed to work with bookshelf or tower speakers that can easily handle all of the midrange and upper bass notes. A home theater receiver will cut off the low frequencies from the bookshelf or tower speakers and redirect the bass into the subwoofer. If you use good bookshelf or tower speakers, then there should be good coverage throughout the full frequency range. Integrating the main speakers with the subwoofer is something that you will need to take time to do.

    Placement is essential, and correctly setting the levels and other setup variables is also essential. If you're in a small to medium sized room, your subwoofer will sound very different in different parts of the room and could sound very boomy depending on the placement. These room effects will affect all subs. Placement, room treatments, and/or equalization will help tame these room effects. Read up on these issues before you buy the sub, so you can prepare yourself in case the sub does not sound right after you plug it for the first time.

    A good subwoofer will give you good deep bass extension, but relatively even response throughout the frequency curve. Ported subs are the most common types and will give you a bit more variation because they are more difficult to design right and require a precise match between the port opening and the interior volume to sound right. Sealed subs have a more gradual dropoff at the low end, which makes them subjective sound more "musical".

    Some of the brands that you should consider include Velodyne, Paradigm, Definitive Technology, Sunfire, B&W, Atlantic Technology, REL, M&K, Klipsch, and Infinity. You should also look into some of the mail order models such as Hsu, SVS, Adire Audio, Acoustic Visions, and Onix Rocket.
  • 12-01-2004, 11:33 AM
    shahrouz
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Woochifer
    ... Some of the brands that you should consider include Velodyne, Paradigm, Definitive Technology, Sunfire, B&W, Atlantic Technology, REL, M&K, Klipsch, and Infinity. You should also look into some of the mail order models such as Hsu, SVS, Adire Audio, Acoustic Visions, and Onix Rocket.

    Woochifer,

    What is your opinion on B&W ASW 600 & ASW 650 Subs. They are sealed, do you consider them as musical? I have a complete set of B&W 600 S3 series and I'm thinking about adding one of these to my speaker package. Music is my priority.

    BTW, what about JBL?