Built in sub woofer vs. external subwoofer

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by George Conti, Mar 3, 2003.

  1. George Conti

    George Conti Extra

    Jul 6, 2002
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    Any ideas on why I should buy the definitive technology powered tower series speaker (bp2004tl or bp2002tl) with a built in subwoofer over the BP10b or BP30s with an SVS subwoofer?

    I have a basement room 18x30 concrete floor, suspended ceiling with a 6 foot opening to another room half that size.
  2. Jeff Gatie

    Jeff Gatie Lead Actor

    Aug 19, 2002
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    This has been discussed before with some heated argument, but the experts on the board usually conclude that the unpowered speakers with a quality (i.e. SVS) sub allow for lower extension, higher output, optimum sub placement and no possibility of cancellation due to two subwoofers placed at two different spots in the room. I concur with the above.
  3. ChadLB

    ChadLB Screenwriter

    May 5, 2002
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    Well my friend has the def tech's with the build in powered 8" sub and def techs all the way around.
    I have Acoustic research Hi res series all the way around and a svs 25-31PCi as my sub and I would take my setup over his any day of the week.
    For me the Def techs sound good but they produce bass too much...
    I like having the sub seperate cause it plays when it should only play....my opinion.
  4. Chip E

    Chip E Screenwriter

    Nov 25, 2000
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    A dedicated sub is always better for HT.
  5. Neal_C

    Neal_C Second Unit

    Mar 15, 2001
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    How about going with both?
    I just upgraded to Def. Tech 2002tl's up front and a non powered CLR2002. I run the 2002tl's as large and let my SVS 20-39 handle the lfe channel and the bass for the center and surrounds.
    Properly calibrated, I don't think the Def. Techs produce to much bass.

    I like having three 12" subs working nicely together.

  6. John Doran

    John Doran Screenwriter

    Jan 24, 2002
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    it all depends on your listening preferences - the subs in the def techs will audibly distort way before the SVS. so, if you listen much louder than 92-95db, then despite the fact that the SVS won't be sweating, the bass you actually hear will be distorted.

    i have the bp2000tl's and decided to pick up an SVS because i was tired of listening to bass-harmonics during loud, bass-heavy passages in movies. but when i set-up the SVS, i forgot to disable the subs in the towers, and as a result the bass didn't sound much different, since the towers were still working and distorting.

    once it occurred to me what was happening, i turned off the subs in the speakers and - presto - beautiful, clean, low bass.

    if you don't listen too loudly, then the subs in the def techs may be ok.

    - jd
  7. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

    Aug 3, 2000
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    I agree with everything everybody said above. [​IMG]

    1) I prefer mains without subs, plus an external sub.

    2) With subs in the mains, you can get nasty interference effects all over your room. Peaks and valleys due to constructive (what you want) and deconstructive (what you don't want) interference.

    3) Having a separate sub allows you much more freedom in placement. Rule of thumb I've heard: in a corner for the highest raw output; 1/3 or 2/5 along the longest wall for flattest freq response.

    4) SVS is a low distortion design. SVS's *sole* mission in life is to build (great) subs. I'd take one of those over *any* other sub-built-into-a-speaker designs.

    I wouldn't do both either (mains with subs plus an external one). Why waste your money with something you don't need *and* that might make your HT sound worse? [​IMG]
  8. Derrik Draven

    Derrik Draven Supporting Actor

    Dec 7, 1998
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    Real Name:
    I have the 3000tl's up front and the 2000tl's in the rear. I set my crossover to 40hz and use my SVS16-46pc for sub duty.

    The mains/rears are set to small. Using the Avia test disc, they are in the ballpark with the SVS. BUT...only when in the mid 20hz range.

    When the test sweep quits at 20hz, the SVS is absolutely pegged on the spl meter!!! This is with all of them calibrated at 70hz; nothing "extra" for the sub.

    So, for me, I run my Outlaw 1050's crossover at 40hz. All the speakers are set to small. The 3000/2000's can handle 40hz, all day long, without breaking a sweat. It's about twice their dropoff freq so, that's a nice buffer zone.

    The bass response I get is pretty damn sweet! No speakers are laboring to make their bass, no distortion, and I feel that the accuracy is higher since the sub only has to do it's "sub duty" plus the, relatively speaking, small amount of info below 40hz.

    I use the towers as full range speakers. Well, minus the sub 40 freqs. Works/sounds great! [​IMG]

    ...your ears may vary.

  9. Jim_P

    Jim_P Stunt Coordinator

    Jun 8, 2002
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    If you're only going to have one sub, my opinion is to go with a seperate subwoofer.

    I currently use a pair of Def Tech BLP2006TLs for my rear effect speakers. I have all my speakers going through graphic equalizers to tweak the sound. Unfortunately this combination makes the Def Techs bottom out. When I added a Velodyne sub to the front, I moved the M&K subwoofer to the rear and wired the rear effect speakers in line through the M&K using a crossover setting of 50 Hz on the rear subwoofer. This cleared up the bottoming out as those frequencies were then transferred to the subwoofer. Great combination but more involved than most people would be interested in going through.

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