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SVS 25-31PC+ not impressed so far

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by RuslanM, Apr 9, 2003.

  1. RuslanM

    RuslanM Active Member

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    Hi All,

    After reading so many positive reviews of the SV subs I ordered the SVS 25-31PC+. It arrived yesterday - wow this thing is HUGE. I placed it in the corner where my older sub used to be and hooked it up to my Denon 3802. All speakers set to small, crossover at 80Hz as before, set gain level at about 1/2 and gave it a try. I played a couple of bass-heavy scenes and ... wasn't impressed overall. While the bass was definitely there and I could feel the vibrations I thought it was boomy, not tight as I expected. I know that I haven't fully calibrated it yet (will do this weekend), but I think the quality and tonality of the bass wont be affected that much by the calibration. I think it's probably the fault of the room's acoustics, but I can't really do much to change that. Does anyone has any suggestions or opinions before I decide whether I should return the sub?

    Thanks,
    RuslanM.
     
  2. Bill Leber

    Bill Leber Well-Known Member

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    If the boomyness is from the room, move the sub or move your seat.
     
  3. Charles J P

    Charles J P Well-Known Member

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  4. Frank Carter

    Frank Carter Well-Known Member

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    Calm down Charles, it's only a subwoofer[​IMG].

    I do agree with Charles though, it is kind of unfair to SVS to not fully integrate it in your system then bad mouth the product.

    If you're suffering from bad room acoustics, you sound can improve the sound by trying different locations for the subwoofer(or seat). The crawling for bass method to find an optimal location works very well. For the phase, I use the method on Adire Audio's sub setup page:



    What kind of subwoofer were you previously using? This would help figure out whether the SVS is capable of outperforming you previous sub? Were you running both at the same time? They could be cancelling each other out where you're sitting.

    Also, how big is the room it's in? Does it open to other rooms?
     
  5. Edward J M

    Edward J M Well-Known Member

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    Boomy is generally not a term used to describe the trademark SVS acoustic signature. My hunch is your room is causing the boomy bass you are hearing. "Boomy" usually means a large peak in the 45-60 Hz region.

    Aside from basic calibration (most enthusiasts run the sub 3 dB hot for HT applications), running an FR sweep at the listening position is really the only way to tell what the sub is actually doing in the room.

    Burn a CD with some test tones (preferably 1/12 octave or finer resolution), break out the SPL meter, and plot the curve. If you are using the RS meter, make sure to account for the correction factors.

    Placement is so critical for good sound. While corner placement excites the most room modes, it sometimes doesn't produce the most favorable overall curve. You might try 1/3 of the room width away from a corner and see how it affects the sound quality and the FR curve.

    Some rooms are so bad acoustically, they can only be tamed with a BFD or a parametric EQ. Remember, you can decrease peaks, but you usually cannot increase nulls. Nulls can usually only be fixed with placement experimentation.

    If you are filtering at the 3802, make sure the filter disable switch is activated at the 25-31PC+ to avoid cascading the AVR and sub filters. Also, try experimenting with the variable phase control - try it at 0, 90, and 180 and see how it affects the FR curve. Whichever phase setting provides the smoothest transition to the mains is the one you want to use.

    This sub has the potential to sound most excellent with some judicious testing, data analysis, and placement/control experimentation on your part.

    Regards,

    Ed
     
  6. RuslanM

    RuslanM Active Member

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    First of all, thanks for the replies. Second, I'm not trying to flame SVS, all I said that the sub did not sound good in my room prior to calibrations which I will do as soon as I have some time. Unfortunately, I don't have other options on the sub placement (this thing is too big for that) all I can do is to move it a little out of the corner.

    I'm not comparing SVS to my older subwoofer which is not really audible below 50Hz and I didn't run both subs at the same time. My room is 20X12 and its back wall opens to the small dinet. The quantity of the sound was not a problem and I wasn't running it too loud, though it was overpowering other speakers a little. I also ran the LFE sweep and noticed a pick at 50Hz. I had the same pick with my old sub, except it didn't produce any sound below this point [​IMG].

    Thanks again for your comments.
     
  7. SVS-Ron

    SVS-Ron Well-Known Member

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    Rus,

    Well, you certainly are getting all the advice I think you might need. If it turns out that the sub doesn't suit your tastes we'll work on a return of course!

    I feel compelled to add that powerful, clean and deep bass can be quite startling at first, (especially if you are not used to anything below 50Hz!). With proper calibration (which really is only possible with an SPL meter and a test DVD like Video Essentials or Avia as you probably know)... and at bit of time for your ears to "adjust" (to what you simply have never heard before) you might well change your mind about what you are hearing. Naturally the sort of movies and music you play will affect this breaking in period.

    The change can be much like an ISF calibration of your video display. At first the transformation is so shocking you can't stand it. After a few days there simply is no going back.

    This is one reason we allow (insist really) you take 45 days to experiment with sub calibration and location. UPS pickup will be the next step if you are not totally thrilled after dialing things in, and going thru a variety of program materials.

    Either way drop me a line and I'll personally expedite your return if it comes to that.

    Ron
    rons@svsubwoofers.com
     
  8. RuslanM

    RuslanM Active Member

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    Ron,

    Thanks so much for your reply. You continue to provide that much praised excelent customer support. Believe me my priorities are to get the good bass and only return it if I can't achieve the desired result. In that case I won't be looking for any subwoofer purchases until I move to other place (which is not going to happen any time soon). If the room sounds bad then I'd better use my old sub for now. I wan't to make the SVS sound better (actually I want it to sound great to justify the look on my wife's face everytime she looks at the sub [​IMG] ), but I'm not sure what I can do beyond the basic calibration, since moving the sub is not an option.

    Thanks,
    Ruslan.
     
  9. Charles J P

    Charles J P Well-Known Member

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    Yes, upon re-reading, my post sounds a bit harsh. Apparently I took out my years of reading "I havent done anything to try to correct the issue, but this thing isnt working right so it must be crap" posts and took it all out on Ruslan. I also suffer from the habit of trying to answer all posed questions as well as pre-answering any questions that I feel might be asked based on the advice given. I apoligize for that. But, I still stand by my general advice. You will never really know if the sub meets your tastes unless you calibrate it.
     
  10. JimmyK

    JimmyK Well-Known Member

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    Rus,

    When I first got my 16-46PC+ last January, I also thought it wasn't as impressive as I had read. For one thing, I was upgrading from a pretty good sub (ADS M3), so the difference wasn't as big as going from no sub or a cheap sub.

    My goal was to find a sub that would go deeper and cleaner, and at first, the SVS didn't seem cut it.

    But I took the time to calibrate and tweek with the help of Tom from SVS (believe me, these guys will do what it takes to make sure you are satisfied!).

    Now it sounds great! Just as I was hoping, the bass goes much deeper and is much cleaner than my old sub. On some movies, the bass is downright scary!

    I discovered after listening to alot of different material that the SVS gives me the bass that is there, and nothing more. It doesn't exagerate a specific range of frequencies like my other sub did. It took a little time to get use to this "accurate" bass. Now there's no going back!

    I guess my point of all this babbling is to do what you can to calibrate it properly, don't hesitate to get the guys at SVS to help you, and give it a chance. Like Ron said, if you are still not satisfied, they will be glad to take it back and give you a refund.


    Let us know how it goes!

    JimmyK
     
  11. RuslanM

    RuslanM Active Member

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    Jimmy,

    Thanks for your comment. I guess the real question is what can I do to improve the sound if can't move the sub more than a few inches.

    Thanks,
    Ruslan.
     
  12. JimmyK

    JimmyK Well-Known Member

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  13. Eric C D

    Eric C D Well-Known Member

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    Ruslan,

    You might want to try an equalizer to tame that peak - either take a chance and order one; or maybe you know someone nearby you with an eq that you could borrow. Or perhaps a temporary move into the room to at least see if it's the placement causing the problem (assure the wife it's only temporary).

    Good luck
     
  14. Eric C D

    Eric C D Well-Known Member

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    OK, so I followed JimmyK...

    Yup on the SPL meter too. You CAN'T tell what these low frequencies should be by sound. Read about the Radio Shack SPL meters - the cheaper analog one is also the preferred one by most HT types.
     
  15. RuslanM

    RuslanM Active Member

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    Thanks guys. I do have the meter and actually have all of the calibration dvds (avia, ve and sv). I can play with sitting position, but not with the sub position. The peak, however is very noticable even by ear. The sound gets much louder below 60Hz and gets soft right below 50Hz. My current crossover setting is at 80, which is the lowest in the reciever. Should I try to set it to 100? I don't have the equalizer, but looks like I'll need one. Could someone recommend a particular model (preferably below $200 range).

    Thanks,
    Ruslan.
     
  16. bruin

    bruin Well-Known Member

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    BFD dsp1100p or dsp1124p!
     
  17. Charles J P

    Charles J P Well-Known Member

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    I just got a Behringer Feedback Destroyer Pro. They are commonly available for $120 on the net. Setting one up is not for the faint of heart though. It took probably 4+ hours straight of taking measurements and tweaking.

    See here for how it all works though.

    http://www.snapbug.ws/bfd.htm

    EDIT: Bruin posted while I was typing. I have the DSP-1124
     
  18. Richard_M

    Richard_M Well-Known Member

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    Rus,

    All the advice given is excellent, and I am sure once you calibrate your system and allow you ears to settle in you will be more than happy.

    Regarding the xover I also have a 3802 which I had always set at 80hz, and had problems with peaks & valleys, a kind member on this forum informed me that he found using 100hz gave him the flatest response, I tried this and have not looked back. I also use a bfd to flatten peaks lower in the spectrum, but by moving the xover up made the blend between sub/mains more flat.

    Enjoy your new toy!!!

    Richard
     
  19. Tom Vodhanel

    Tom Vodhanel Well-Known Member

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    Hi Ruslan,

    If you can't move the subwoofer, then you are left with 3 options.

    1)experiementing with listening positions
    2)room acoustical treatment/bass traps.
    3)EQ.

    #1 will be the easiest, and it is free..[​IMG]
    #2, the traps can be large, and they can be rather expensive unless you want to try DIYing them.
    #3, a good approach in taming peaks, although it usually cannot help dips.

    Often, a combination of these options is the best bet. Be sure to email me at

    techsupport@svsubwoofers.com

    if you have any other specific questions too you want me think about too. I try to keep up on emails 7 days a week, but I'm afraid I don't have nearly enough time to work thru every SVS question on the forums anymore.(and I do apologize for that!)

    Tom V.
    SVS
     
  20. VinhT

    VinhT Well-Known Member

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    SVS subs should come with a little note saying, "If you are not impressed, then you are doing something wrong." [​IMG] Time and time again, whenever an SVS sub seems to disappoint, it's always some sort of user error.

    I have the 25-31PC+ and I barely notice it anymore, because it just sits there and does what it does perfectly. In fact, the only time I get impressed nowadays is when source material actually has proper bass for the sub to play.
     

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