1. Visit this thread for your chance to win a selection of Lionsgate action films on UV!
    Dismiss Notice

Bookshelf Speaker with good bass

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by kyutaek, Mar 29, 2004.

  1. kyutaek

    kyutaek Agent

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2004
    Messages:
    31
    Likes Received:
    0
    I originally planned to have a Epos ELS-3 and center channel with 8 or 10" subwoofer. But, due to some reasons(attached to neighbor, vibrating/rattling issue in the 2nd floor living room, etc.), I might not get a woofer.

    Given the situation, do I have to buy another main/center speakers with good bass. I knew that most of bookshelf speakers need subwoofer for better bass. While Epos sounds 66hz- 20khz, some other ones (like NHT SB3) can go down to 39hz. Does this frequency response really matter (for bass)? Also, I was wondering if there is a trade off between good mid/high and good bass in bookshelf. I am not a big fan of higher volume. Does it mean that I should go with good mid/high speaker, rather than good bass speaker?

    Pleaes advise me if I should keep my Epos series or any other models for better bass and comparable mid/high. I will do my home theater initially 2.1 setup (70% music/30% movie, budget can go up to $800-$900 for main and center)
     
  2. kyutaek

    kyutaek Agent

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2004
    Messages:
    31
    Likes Received:
    0
    Anyone?
     
  3. John Tami

    John Tami Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2004
    Messages:
    117
    Likes Received:
    0
    Well, I just upgraded to JBL S26II (3 for my front stage) and S36II (for rears) and had them going for a week before my SVS showed up, I was quite surprised at the amount of Bass. (previously was a cube HTB setup. My old 2 channel setup is in another room) I think the S26II's are rated down to 48Mhz.....

    They are hard to find, got mine from the JBL/HK Ebay store. Great experience all around.

    I know B&W make some nice Bookshelfs that have some decent reach. But you'll never get true HT bass without a dedicated (lfe signal) Sub. You can fit in a good small one like a Rocket and turn the gain way down when needed for your situation.
     
  4. Danny Tse

    Danny Tse Producer

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2000
    Messages:
    3,185
    Likes Received:
    0
    kyutaek,

    I listened to the NHT SB3 powered by a Classe integrated amp, and these speakers are sweet. Yes, the bass response does come into play, making the music sound more real. But I do think 39Hz is probably overstating the reaches of the SB3. I have the NHT SB2, and in a small room, these speakers can really sing. NHT speakers do require quality amplification though.
     
  5. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 1999
    Messages:
    11,571
    Likes Received:
    24
    Location:
    NorCal
    Real Name:
    John
    The SB3 is sealed, so the output drops off towards the bottom. It doesn't sound like 39Hz to me either, but it is clean and plays quite low without sounding exaggerated or boomy, one of the reasons I like that particular speaker. They definitely need decent amplification. $800-900 would put them out of your range though, wouldn't it? The SB-3 are MSRP $599/pr.
     
  6. NickSo

    NickSo Producer

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2000
    Messages:
    4,260
    Likes Received:
    0
    Real Name:
    Nick So
    The paradigm atoms have been well reviewed in terms of their bass extension
     
  7. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 1999
    Messages:
    11,571
    Likes Received:
    24
    Location:
    NorCal
    Real Name:
    John
    IMO, the Atoms do not have sufficient bass to be used on their own. I've owned two pairs, v2 and v3. v3 Mini Monitors have very decent bass extension, but are not as accurate as the SB-3 (and don't cost as much either).
     
  8. kyutaek

    kyutaek Agent

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2004
    Messages:
    31
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thank you for the posts. Does everyone agree that NHT SB3 is superior to Epos ELS-3 in mid/high/imaging as well? (I know it is very subjective and they are not in the same price point, though). I also found that Monitor Audio S1/S2/B2 also goes down to 45hz ~ 40hz. I auditioned s2 and b2 the other day and liked both (s2 is better).
    What would be your suggestions?

    Also, just a dummy question: can I put these loud speakers horizontally, not vertically (in the entertainment center)? I knew that some are not preferred. But, don't know these models above.
     
  9. greg baker

    greg baker Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2003
    Messages:
    165
    Likes Received:
    0
    If you are looking to put your speakers horizontially I would try to find JBL s38's. Do an internet search and you should be able to find them. They are designed to be place horizonatally. I wouldn't recommend putting the SB-3's this way as this is not what they are designed for.
     
  10. VinhT

    VinhT Second Unit

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2002
    Messages:
    357
    Likes Received:
    0
    The SB3 really does extend down to 40Hz. The reason why it doesn't sound that way is due to a peak around 80Hz, which may mask its extension.

    A bookshelf speaker with excellent, honest bass is the Dayton BR-1. By design, it is flat down to 45Hz. I have been unable to find another bookshelf speaker that offers comparable bass performance. Most commercial speakers use a mid-bass peak to give the illusion of deep bass.
     
  11. Danny Tse

    Danny Tse Producer

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2000
    Messages:
    3,185
    Likes Received:
    0
    Before I purchased my NHT SB2, I auditioned the Monitor Audio Bronze B1 and B2....there was no comparison, the B2 was much better. In fact, at the same prize point as the B1, the Energy C-1 is a much better speaker. So there you go, yet another option.

    The Silver S2 was in another performance level altogether.

    I got my NHT SB2 for $300.00/pair from J&R, who is an authorized dealer. This was around X'mas time last year. Check with J&R for current price on NHT speakers. I remember having a hard time deciding between the SB2 and the SB3 (at $450.00/pair), but I just couldn't swing the $$$ at that time.

    BTW, J&R is currently offering the Acoustic Research (AR) S20 bookshelf speaker for $130.00/pair + free shipping. Excellent price for an excellent speaker.
     
  12. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 1999
    Messages:
    11,571
    Likes Received:
    24
    Location:
    NorCal
    Real Name:
    John
    Accessories for less (ac4l.com) has the S20 for $119/pr, but you have to pay for shipping, so it will be very close to the same price. Specs say they are good to 45hz. They also had the SB3s for a while at $400/pr new.

    I listened to the C1 and C3 and didn't like them. Have not heard the MAs.
     
  13. Bill Blank

    Bill Blank Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2002
    Messages:
    222
    Likes Received:
    0
    Have you considered a lightly used pair of Paradigm Studio 20 v2's??

    They have decent bass extension and their mids/highs are as good, some might say better than the NHT's.

    I had a pair of NHT SuperOnes several years ago mated with a $500 Sony surround receiver and music was just TERRIBLE! When I matched them up with an NAD integrated amp, things sounded much better. They didn't go very deep however.

    Bill
     
  14. PaulDA

    PaulDA Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2004
    Messages:
    2,693
    Likes Received:
    93
    Location:
    St. Hubert, Quebec, Canada
    Real Name:
    Paul
    Though at retail these might be too expensive (1000$), I have to put in a plug for my Boston Acoustics VR-M60s. Though rated to 51hz F3, they have the best clean bass extension of any bookshelf that I auditioned, along with a very detailed, neutral (to me) sound. In bookshelf models, I auditioned the following (not necessarily in this order) before buying my VR-M60s.

    Energy C-3
    Paradigm Studio 20 v3
    Paradigm Monitor 5 v3
    B&W 600, 601, 602 series 3
    Boston Acoustics CR75
    B&W CM2
    B&W DM303
    Phase Technology PC 1.1II
    Kef Q1

    As to bass response, the Monitor 5s were quite good, the Phase Techs were surprising for such a small speaker, the Studio 20s were third overall (to me) but the standout, aside from my VR-M60s were the B&W CM2s. The CM2s and the VR-M60s both made me verify that the subwoofer in the system was not active. Granted I did not use pipe organ music for my test, but I did use the track that eliminates pretenders to the throne, for me. On the remastered CD of Selling England by the Pound, by Genesis, track 3 Firth of Fifth is my "quick and dirty" speaker test. It has a classically influenced acoustic piano solo intro, high pitched flute solos, acoustic and electric guitar solos, deep synth bass, lots of cymbals and many layers of sound. When I was auditioning, this was the first track I played. If the speaker could handle it, I moved on to other tracks and genres. If you have a favourite heavy bass track, let it loose on the various speakers. That will be more revealing than spec sheets.
     

Share This Page