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$600 Subwoofer Shoot-Out: SVS PB1-ISD vs. Hsu STF-3 – Test & Review (1 Viewer)

CurtisSC

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One thing that would interest me on the LFM-1 is the downfiring ports vs rear firing on the STF-3, and differences it might make.

Craig is mentioning in his HTS thread that the SVS and Hsu seem to be sounding better with time. Have you noticed any of that as well?
 

ScottCarr

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Ed,

I am willing to meet you half way with a PC ultra if you would like to borrow it for a shoot out.

I live near worcester MA
 

Edward J M

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Thanks....but honestly, what other OEM cylinder could stand against it? Possibly the $1,000 Sadhara in faux leather with its Tumult based xBL2 12" driver. But then you would need an external amp with a similar feature set as the PC-Ultra. I don't think it can be matched for $1,200.
 

ScottCarr

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Hey tony,

I believe the 45a and 47a use that same chipset. The 47ai uses a different chipset which performs bass management on SACD and DVDa. The 59ai does bass management as well. this maybe true via firewire only not sure on that.

This is crucial because if one has an SVS or Hsu sub they may assume the sub is not all that.

If this is your case and you want to get the most out of the new digital formats and your subs on AVs forum look for Gordon McGregor posts. Very informative about the pioneer line.

Oh yeah I love your reply. Your sense of humor is a better side of you.:emoji_thumbsup:
Cheers
 

Robb Roy

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Ed, I would like to thank you for your time and effort with this review – it is very impressive and stands on its own.

-Robbb
 

Craig Chase

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Ed... 70 hours ? Sounds about right...

On another thread here, a fella wants to see a B4+, a PB2 Ultra, AND twin PB2+ tested... THAT sounds like fun... I am just not sure where I would live...

Actually... about the time Ed is ready to publish his Ultra results... I will post what twin pb2+ can do... The Ultra, of course, has that gorgeous finish... but both set ups are about $2400-$2500 delivered...
 

CurtisSC

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I think this is great and will be interesting, especially since we tell everyone to "listen" first.

What frequencies will be tested? And will you be using "protection"? :D
 

Craig Chase

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That is why I stand 25 feet, or 8 meters, away... for protection... the SPL is down 18 DB from there vs, at one meter...

For Frequencies... the usual, from 16 Hz, 20, 25... up to 62
 

Patrick Sun

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Folks, some posts have been excised from this otherwise excellent thread. Please think before you click on the "Submit" post button, lest you derail a worthwhile thread for your own personal political edification. We will be monitoring this thread, and if the parties involved can control themselves from here on in, nothing else will need to be done beside pruning the problematic posts from this thread, otherwise...

Seriously, no more political sidebars in this thread (not even to explain your knee-jerk reaction to those issues, no one is clicking on the thread for those types of posts, so just move on).

Now carry on.
 

Craig Chase

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Regarding the improvement heard in the SVS and Hsu subs... it is being discussed on the "shootout" thread on HTS ... There is a fixed barometer for this... The Denali has stabilized, while the other two have improved...

any and all are welcome to join that discussion... it is personally my first experience with some components changing in SQ with another that is not, all in the same listening environment for 5 weeks now...
 

Ned

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Sub makers like Velodyne would never allow their subs to be tested with the sort of objective info Ed is including. They (Velodyne) want the fluffy sort of subjective reviews that say things like "scared my dog", "shook everything", etc.

Ed combined the right amount of subjective and objective info and controlled the variables that make many reviews completely worthless. Nicely done.
 

Edward J M

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Patrick:

Thank you for intervening. I didn't know how to respond to some of those posts, so I didn't say anything at all. I'm glad to see the thread back on track.



It is a well-researched phenomenon that people start to hear distortion at different levels. And the type of distortion (odd-order vs. even-order as discussed in the review) makes a difference too.

I suppose if the same person is used as a subjective distortion barometer, you might be able to pull it off. But in the bass regions, distortion might have to get pretty high for you to reliably detect it at the same SPL a few times in a row. You might want to run a few tests on yourself and see how reproducible that method is. And if you have a head cold one day and your ears are plugged, it might vary the results, etc.

In the end, I do think you should maintain "some" type of objective measurement tool for THD, as well as your ears.

At what frequencies were bottoming the Denali PR's before THD hit 5%? I'd ask Kyle about that, and also consult with Jack Gilvey. Also, how is the LEAP mic calibrated for SPL? You need some sort of reference standard for that.

Ed
 

DavidG

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Aug 11, 2002
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Though you don't need another "attaboy" Ed, I'll give you mine anyways: an excellent review. You covered not only the objective tests but the subjective tests in multiple applications and the use of a "skilled" set of ears. Add that to the full explanation of the tools/methodology/options chosen and it made for a complete review. You must be seeking a primo reviewer's job at WSR :D

I wonder how the Hsu VTF-3/2 would have compared to the PB1-ISD at $100 more?

Looking forward to more reviews from you and Craig,
David
 

Edward J M

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Thank you for the kind words, David. Yes, I was wondering that myself, and maybe someday we'll find out.

Originally I think everyone was under the impression that the STF-3 used the same woofer as the VTF-3Mkii; now it appears that might not be the case. I'm going to pull that woofer and take a look at it and take some macro digi pics up close for future reference, and also weigh it. That way, if I ever get a chance to pull a VTF-3MKii woofer, I'll be able to tell the physical/exterior differences (if any) right away.

In addition to a potentially different woofer, factor in what appears to be a different tune point, a slightly higher rated amp with maybe a different EQ curve in the MO mode, and variable tuning, and I think we can expect different test results between the STF-3 and the VTF-3MKii.

With that said, no one will argue the closest match-up for this shoot-out in all respects was the PB1-ISD vs. the STF-3.

If you are still talking SVS vs. Hsu, I think the $750 (shipped, after back orders clear) matte black VTF-3Mkii is best matched up against an $800 (shipped) current production variable tune 25-31PC+ (with the latest generation dB-12 woofer).

Or if you want to go upscale a bit on the exterior, here's a great potential match-up:

The $900 (shipped) gloss black VTF-3MKii or the $950 (shipped) furniture grade rosewood VTF-3MKii vs. the $1,200 (shipped) furniture grade PB1-Plus.

That would keep things box-box, and according to SVS the 25-31PC+ and the PB1+ are virtual performance clones anyway. I'd love to see that upscale match-up. :)

Ed
 

John Tami

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Great review! I'll only add that (I tell Craig the same!) I wish a Cylinder would have been in the mix too...yes a $599 20-39PCi. Same Driver, Same Amp, (design/build same place..you do forget to mention the amps are built in Canada) but different inclosures. What if any difference do they impart on the sound quality, spl, freq, etc...

The casual HT guy/gal is used to the Box....you see them in every BB or CC etc, as well as any magazines they might look at. I'm sure the first time they look upon the SVS site and see all those cylinders, they wonder how they can compare...I imagine they really start wondering when they see several (boxes vs cyl's) that share everything except the inclosure.

Knowing SVS there is little difference, but how does Joe Schmo know that? ;)

Looking forward to you next one! Thanks!
 

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