A small tribute to Wiggins, et.al.

Discussion in 'Home Theater Projects' started by dave alan, Jun 11, 2004.

  1. dave alan

    dave alan Second Unit

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    After building many subs over the past 2 years, around which I've used 23 different drivers (10", 12", 15" and 18") from a half dozen manufacturers, I've recently built some subs using 12" and 15" Brahmas and 15" Tumults, all with XBL2 motors.

    In this world of BS marketing and specs, it's been a pleasure to experience products like these from a great bunch of guys, through a great dealer (Kyle [​IMG] ).

    The theory is sound, the information is there for the asking and the product delivers in every way.

    A bit later this summer, I'll post some pics and specs for those who are interested.

    It's always cool when Mr. Wiggins shows up on these boards, IMO. He's articulate and knows the subjects he writes about.

    I come here every day to see what's new, enjoy other's fine work, soak up experiences and digest theory, but I don't post much.

    After testing my latest 2XTumult, sealed, L/T, 3,200 watt LFE sub I just felt compelled to voice appreciation.
     
  2. Allen Ross

    Allen Ross Supporting Actor

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    HERE HERE, it's so great that we have a community that you can actually talk to the people behind the company, from Parts Express, Adire, GR, Stryke, and Acoustic Visions. From those few companies you can get pretty much anything you want and it will all be top notch.


    Thanks guys for helping us with all our questions as small and simple they may seem. You sure are building a loyal customer base here.

    So when are the free Tumults shipping out?
     
  3. David_P

    David_P Stunt Coordinator

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    [​IMG]

    I wonder how THAT sounds!

    I haven't built anything yet, but I deeply appreciate the experts showing up here and being willing to spend the time, thought, and effort to help others...

    gentlmenly [​IMG]

    David
     
  4. Aaron Gilbert

    Aaron Gilbert Second Unit

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    I will add a fourth comment of praise to Dan and all the folks at Adire, thanks! Having spoken with Dan numerous times in person, I can vouch for the fact that not only is he articulate and knowledgeable, but also cordial, courteous, and just a fun guy to be around!

    Dave, I will second David's response to your subwoofer. Frankly, I am at a loss to understand where people such as yourself are using these devices, do you own commercial cinemas?! I have an extremely meager Dayton 15" Quatro, which moves about 3.5 times less air than the Tumult, using a paltry 400 watts, and my freakin' house is going to shake to pieces! Granted, that's 'only' seven times less output, which is 'only' and increase of about 8.5dB, but damn! You all must live in concrete houses. To be fair though, my system doesn't QUITE get to the new THX subwoofer/LFE max level of 115dB. It maxes out at about 114dB at 22-24Hz, measured measured at the listening position. I keep meaning to upgrade to a Tempest so I can say both my car and home are 'Powered by Adire'. Anyone want to buy a Quatro? [​IMG]


    Aaron Gilbert
     
  5. Dennis XYZ

    Dennis XYZ Stunt Coordinator

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    It's more about low distortion than winning SPL contests. It takes a lot of woofage to keep the distortion low at reasonably loud volumes - either a high quality long stroke driver like the Tumult or several lesser drivers.
     
  6. dave alan

    dave alan Second Unit

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    Aaron,

    Dennis is correct. I cruise along using 4-500 watts.

    With a sealed, L/T design, when the low stuff comes, in order for the sub to keep up the same SPL as that of the sub playing a 40 or 50 Hz note, it requires 6-10 dB of boost.

    That's 4-9 times the power needed for very short bursts to allow the smallish, sealed box to be able to play the same volume when belting a 20ish Hz note.

    There are quite a few very high-tech things going on in this subwoofer, but without a driver that performs like a Tumult or it's cousin the Brahma, it's all for nothing.

    Add typical room gain and you've got a flat line to 13 Hz. in a very small footprint.

    I've blown, melted, wrinkled, ripped, unglued, unraveled and otherwise brutalized drivers in the quest for the perfect driver for this extremely specific application.

    The Adire drivers have never even bottomed through the testing stages. This is largely because the specs are real specs. That makes for much easier and predictable design of the electronics, routing and amplification when loading them in a given, airtight space.

    Again, purchasing a highly engineered, high quality, state of the art product is one thing, but being able to have access to the people involved to get specific answers, or just to ask a dumb question is the icing.

    My hat's off to the Adire Group and Kyle Richardson.
     
  7. Aaron Gilbert

    Aaron Gilbert Second Unit

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    Ah, I didn't realize you were using a Linkwitz Transform. Man do I hate abbreviations and acronyms! You definitely can use the extra power then. I would guess my sub is loafing along at about 50 watts, if that. But then, most people are not crazy enough to use a box that's 50% larger than Vas. [​IMG]

    I have yet to blow a woofer (other than for fun, intentionally, in free air).

    Dennis,

    I understand your point, and low distortion is an admirable goal, but I don't totally agree. I would say that people's expectations have grown vastly higher with the advent of longer excursion drivers, starting with the Shiva and now with the Tumult and Parthenon. That my driver is producing more distortion than a Tumult or even Tempest almost goes without question. But do I actually need lower distortion levels? Not really. Also, my receiver has a built in subwoofer peak limiter, so I don't need to worry about bottoming the driver, ever. I deal with subwoofers each day at work, and mine kills the majority of commercial units we sell, except for box size. [​IMG]

    Don't get me wrong, I am all for state of the art design. That's what advances technology which eventually trickles down to all the other lines. But I have to draw the line somewhere. People keeping designing more and more subwoofers that have higher and higher output levels, when is enough, enough? First it was 105dB, now it's 115dB, this one in question is no doubt over 120dB (in room anyhow), next it's 125dB, or 130dB? I already don't listen to my system at reference level, usually at 10dB under, so why would I need more output? Plus, I'd like to keep my hearing, my house's walls, and my neighbors friendship! This is all in my opinion, of course. [​IMG]


    Aaron Gilbert
     
  8. Brian Tatnall

    Brian Tatnall Stunt Coordinator

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    I find Dan and his company to be easily one of the best around. I had the opportunity to meet Dan once and during that time I learned more about subwoofer distortion than most people ever want to know. The best part is that it was completely physics and formulas with explanations. Each part of it also went through the vast knowledge of transducer design history Dan has studied. There are very few people I trust in the Audio industry. Thank you!!!
     
  9. Hank Frankenberg

    Hank Frankenberg Cinematographer

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    AND, I WAS impressed by Dan's new warp-drive motor concept[​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  10. Hank Frankenberg

    Hank Frankenberg Cinematographer

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    AND, I WAS impressed by Dan's new warp-drive motor concept[​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  11. Dennis XYZ

    Dennis XYZ Stunt Coordinator

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    You're the only one who can decide that. Personally, distortion is a Big Deal for me. You asked why people need so many big drivers and that's why.

    Some people enjoy the sound of high distortion - it gives the bass more "punch" or "slam" when the 80Hz harmonic is louder than the 40Hz fundamental. I hear them driving by my house every day. [​IMG]

    Different strokes....
     
  12. Dennis XYZ

    Dennis XYZ Stunt Coordinator

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    You're the only one who can decide that. Personally, distortion is a Big Deal for me. You asked why people need so many big drivers and that's why.

    Some people enjoy the sound of high distortion - it gives the bass more "punch" or "slam" when the 80Hz harmonic is louder than the 40Hz fundamental. I hear them driving by my house every day. [​IMG]

    Different strokes....
     
  13. Aaron Gilbert

    Aaron Gilbert Second Unit

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    Yep I can understand that. It's a fairly major deal to me as well - high efficiency, low distortion, and smooth frequency response are the key elements in all my speakers (which is why they are all big and low impedance). I'm just saying that in my system, my meager sub's distortion is quite low enough for my purposes. I realize there are dozens of woofers out there which probably would have an order of magnitude less distortion at the same SPL.

    My point before though was not to dissuade those in pursuit of the absolute lowest distortion (are we below tube amp levels yet?). Rather, my point was simply that the perception of what output levels/distortion characterize a great subwoofer has skyrocketed in recent years to levels unheard of before, thanks in large part to Adire's woofers. I'll admit, I was one of the first when they began their high excursion drivers, buying one of the first Shivas off the assembly line. It's still working great in my car. It used to be, back when ACI (Audio Concepts, Inc.) was still selling drivers/kits in the late 80's, their top of the line Titan subwoofer used 12" woofers with an Xmax of only 8mm. Granted, this was meant as a stereo pair, but even so, compared to what we have today, this would be nearly laughed at - equivalent of about one Shiva (or my Dayton Quatro 15").

    Some may say, well, that's progress, true enough. But the AC12 woofer only cost $60 each. Per liter of swept volume, that's actually slightly less than the Tumult. So bang for the buck hasn't really changed, just bang. Now we can do with one woofer what used to require seven woofers and a box ten times larger. That's awesome! But I don't really need the output of seven woofers, and I thought the $125 Shiva was an expensive woofer, so.... [​IMG]


    Cheers,

    Aaron Gilbert
     
  14. Aaron Gilbert

    Aaron Gilbert Second Unit

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    Yep I can understand that. It's a fairly major deal to me as well - high efficiency, low distortion, and smooth frequency response are the key elements in all my speakers (which is why they are all big and low impedance). I'm just saying that in my system, my meager sub's distortion is quite low enough for my purposes. I realize there are dozens of woofers out there which probably would have an order of magnitude less distortion at the same SPL.

    My point before though was not to dissuade those in pursuit of the absolute lowest distortion (are we below tube amp levels yet?). Rather, my point was simply that the perception of what output levels/distortion characterize a great subwoofer has skyrocketed in recent years to levels unheard of before, thanks in large part to Adire's woofers. I'll admit, I was one of the first when they began their high excursion drivers, buying one of the first Shivas off the assembly line. It's still working great in my car. It used to be, back when ACI (Audio Concepts, Inc.) was still selling drivers/kits in the late 80's, their top of the line Titan subwoofer used 12" woofers with an Xmax of only 8mm. Granted, this was meant as a stereo pair, but even so, compared to what we have today, this would be nearly laughed at - equivalent of about one Shiva (or my Dayton Quatro 15").

    Some may say, well, that's progress, true enough. But the AC12 woofer only cost $60 each. Per liter of swept volume, that's actually slightly less than the Tumult. So bang for the buck hasn't really changed, just bang. Now we can do with one woofer what used to require seven woofers and a box ten times larger. That's awesome! But I don't really need the output of seven woofers, and I thought the $125 Shiva was an expensive woofer, so.... [​IMG]


    Cheers,

    Aaron Gilbert
     
  15. KaronnyF

    KaronnyF Auditioning

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    two tumults in one sealed enclosure being fed 1600watts into each of the woofers right?
    and whats LFE?
     
  16. Wayne Ernst

    Wayne Ernst Cinematographer

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    I think to a "Bass-aholic" that is referred to as an audio enema. [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  17. dave alan

    dave alan Second Unit

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    Actually, I've been experimenting with getting the size of the enclosure as small as possible while balancing all of the compromises that entails.

    I've monitored the input and output signals for clipping and the driver(s) for distortion, bottoming, etc., and done the math for required amplification through an L/T circuit.

    So, the amount of power (actually, it's 800 watts per 2 ohm voice coil) is for peaks at and around 20 Hz at reasonably high level playback. For the most part, the sub is coasting except for those sorts of DVDs that have the big LFE signals.

    On papaer, it reads like I'm just a bass freak who's looking for SPL, but I'm just trying to meet the Dolbly spec for the LFE channel in a relatively very small box, which requires gobs-o-clean-power and a driver that can move the air and stay composed.

    The Tumult is an amazing piece of hardware. For this application, I'm not aware of any driver that equals it.

    ...Or...what Wayne says. [​IMG]
     
  18. Paul Spencer

    Paul Spencer Stunt Coordinator

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    Dave,

    I have a gallery of diy subs on my website and it would be great to see your subs published online ... with a comparison of them all. It could be a great resource and I think a LOT of people would be VERY interested in seeing one person comparing 23 subs! Afterall, we all like to hear comparisons from one person who has heard driver x and y. I've sent you an email [​IMG]
     
  19. ThomasW

    ThomasW Cinematographer

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    He has 23+ drivers, not 23 operational subwoofers. [​IMG]

    I'm sorry you weren't interested in the 4 or so subs I sent you info about. I guess everyone has 12 driver IB subs, 4 driver IB subs, 8 driver dipole subs, and the like.......
     
  20. Paul Spencer

    Paul Spencer Stunt Coordinator

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    Thomas,



    No, no, not at all ... quite the contrary in fact. [​IMG]

    As you only sent me links, I intended to only add links to your subs. If you would like to send me some text following the format, then I should be able to get them onto the site within a few days.
     

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