Best sub <$300 to match with Kenwood HTB

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Joe Moon, Mar 9, 2002.

  1. Joe Moon

    Joe Moon Auditioning

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    I have the Kenwood HTB503 and really feel that the sub is lacking. I figure since I got the HTB for around $400 that if I spend about $300 on a sub I'd be able to get something better than the included one.
     
  2. Matt Stone

    Matt Stone Lead Actor

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    A lot of people will tell you to not get anything until you have more money to spend on one...but I'd say look for a low-end Energy sub. I have the e:XL 8, it's 8" and 100 watts...I've been very happy with it.
     
  3. Paul_Fisher

    Paul_Fisher Screenwriter

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    You can get a Sony SAWM40, which is a 12" sub which is highly regarded here for $150.
     
  4. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    What aspect of the performance is not sufficient? How is it being used? Mostly music or movies? Have you calibrated? Is the sub placed in an optimal place within the room to help compensate for room acoustics?

    For $300, I would not expect much from an HTiB. Almost always one of the places HTiBs compromise, in the interest of cost, is the sub. ALWAYS check the specs of the sub first. If it doesn't go lower than 30Hz, then I would say it is probably not going to be a serious performer. Everybody says the Kenwood HTiBs are very good, but I would take the better Sony setups for their subs alone.

    For the price, I would say the SAWM40 would be a definite improvement, but that doesn't mean it will solve your problem.
     
  5. EricHaas

    EricHaas Supporting Actor

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    Get the Sony SA-Wm40 for $150 and run both subs. Someone did that exact thing with his Kenwood HTB and a SA-wm40 and posted about it a couple months ago. He was very impressed with the result.
     
  6. Dustin B

    Dustin B Producer

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    Do you have any sort of wood working skills and tools or access to someone with the tools and skills? If so here is easily the best sub $300 option.
    http://www.acoustic-visions.com/295185.htm
    http://www.acoustic-visions.com/300792.htm
    Buy each of these (but have Kyle change the boost on that amp from 5dB at 35hz to 1dB at 25hz), $200 + shipping.
    A sheet maybe a sheet and half of 3/4" MDF, a 2' long 4" dia piece of PVC pipe (your choosen box size and tuning will determine what length you cut it down to), some mounting hardware, a little wire and some paint. Approximately $50-$75.
    Build a box that is 85-120L tuned somewhere between 18 and 22hz.
    End result will be a sub that could match or beat a SVS 20-39CS.
     
  7. steve nn

    steve nn Cinematographer

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    Most likley me.I thought adding the wm-40 worked and sounded great for the money.I bought the 40 for $135 at the same time I bought the 504.I did finally try the Kenwood sub on its own and was glad I did.I used Pearl Harbor as the test and bottomed it out right away by itself.The WM-40 did not bottom out on it's own and for the money sure holds its own very well in my opinion.If you buy the 40 use both.I did sell the 40 though and the Kenwood sub sits in the den under a table.I just hade to get a sub with a 15" driver so I did.I like to feel it as much as I like to here it when the house is empty of disabling factors.I would think it best to go with the sony and use BOTH,I don't think you would be disappointed at all.It is a definite upgrade.Use the money you would save for your next sub in a higher price bracket down the road if you should still want more.
     
  8. ThomasL

    ThomasL Supporting Actor

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    Joe, I agree with everyone else in that figuring out what you're expecting and where the performance is lacking is the first thing to do. Also, make sure the system is calibrated as best it can be. With that said, it seems the Sony sub mentioned is the one that most people love in the under $300 range. If you have a similar situation to me, then placement constraints may force you to look for something a little smaller. If you're like me and needed a sub that fit into a tighter space, I'd recommend looking at the Energy sub mentioned and the Paradigm PDR-8. I have the latter and it does down below 30 Hz in my small home theater room and has a fairly even response. It's great for DD/DTS material and it's ok for music. For the latter, I find the sub to simply be too slow for faster songs that have a quick underlying bass line - like U2's Elevation for example. I was playing that last night and it just didn't sound "right". I have bookshelf fronts (go down to the 60-70Hz range)and I've concluded that if you really want seamless musical response from the low end to the high end that your best bet is to get fronts that do the full range.
     
  9. Joe Moon

    Joe Moon Auditioning

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    I have the sub in a corner and all the speakers calibrated to 75db and the sub at maybe 77 or 78 with Video Essentials (don't have Avia). The room is about 15 x 12 with standard height ceilings (8?) and can be completely closed off (the door is pretty flimsy and leads to a 20 x 4 hallway). I chose the sub's location by placing it in my main listening position and walking around the room looking for the loudest spot.

    I feel the sub just doesn't go low enough and when I turn it up just doesn't keep up with the other speakers. At moderate levels the bass level is consistent with the other speakers but once I turn it up to movie levels (maybe -10 or so from reference) it seems anemic. I don't know the specs on the sub in the Kenwood HTB503 but just from listening I'd guess its only fairly flat to about 40Hz and then drops off a LOT.

    Just because at least one person seems to be confused, let me clarify, I already have the HTB503 and am looking to spend about $300 on a new sub.

    I am fairly handy with tools but living in a NYC apartment I don't have the workspace or the tools to DIY.

    The Sony is something I have to check out but if it's $150, is there nothing that is twice as good at twice the price? I know that there are a lot of good offerings at around $500 or a little more but saving up for that really isn't an option as I don't want to spend more than $300 on it even if I wait for a couple months. I'm not saying I WANT to spend more than $150 but is there nothing at $300 that is worth the $150 premium since I have that much I can spend? Or would it be worth buying two of the Sony's (and keep in mind if I bought one I would still have the Kenwood sub I could use)?
     
  10. ThomasL

    ThomasL Supporting Actor

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    Joe, there are other options in the $300 range such as JBL, Polk, Velodyne in addition to Energy and Paradigm mentioned previously. Go to www.pricescan.com and do a search for all subs around $300. You'll really to have to demo them to determine if you're getting more bang from your buck vs the Sony. I'm not surprised that the Kenwood doesn't go below 40Hz. I had a cheap Sony HTiB that came with a Sony sub (not the same one as the one everyone likes) it also dropped to nothing below 40 Hz.
    cheers,
    --tom
     
  11. Al Moodie

    Al Moodie Extra

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    Joe Moon
    Check out the specs for PSB Subsonic 5.
    It's small and only goes down to 27 - 30 but is
    very well reviewed. MSRP at US$449. but can be found
    for US$340 / 360.
    See it here:
    http://psbspeakers.com/s/Subwoofers2.html
     
  12. Al Moodie

    Al Moodie Extra

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  13. Dan_Jones

    Dan_Jones Stunt Coordinator

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    Welp Joe you won an SVS-16-46PCi...you shouldn't have any sub problems anymore lol [​IMG]
    Congrats!
     
  14. Jeff Brink

    Jeff Brink Stunt Coordinator

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    Hey Joe,
    For $300 I'd keep an eye out for a good SVS bargain.....oh, nevermind. Congrats![​IMG]
     
  15. Dustin B

    Dustin B Producer

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    A SVS 16-46PCi with a Kenwood HTB [​IMG]
    Better start saving Joe, it's gonna take some coin to get the rest of your system up to par with that sub :p)
     

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