Car Sub for HT use??

Discussion in 'Home Theater Projects' started by Travis-J, Jun 13, 2003.

  1. Travis-J

    Travis-J Agent

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    I live in a fairly small town, I dont think there are any stores here that sell stuff for DIY projects ie) Drivers amps etc. I know I can order them but that just seems like a pain. Can I use car woofers for a powered sub for my HT. It seems to me cheaper to buy woofers and amps designed for cars. Good or Bad Idea? and why?
     
  2. TimForman

    TimForman Supporting Actor

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    Typically, car audio drivers will not do well as drivers for a home subwoofer system, as they are usually designed to produce a good response when a car's cabin gain is taken into consideration. However, there are a few for which the T/S parameters suggest that they can produce good results in the home. IOW, if you're planning to use a car audio driver in your design, treat it as a home audio driver and design a system based on its T/S parameters to get the best results. In addition, I came across an interesting thread on another site. I'm a little skeptical of the acoustical sophistication of the listeners.
    Car vs. home speakers
     
  3. Joe Ku

    Joe Ku Stunt Coordinator

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    You are not going to be able to use an automotive amp in your house without a BIG power supply, or a really tiny amp(whats the point in that). You can buy a fairly powerful subwoofer plate amp very cheaply, probibly cheaper than the power supply you would need to run a decent car amp. You could also find a buddy with an old stereo home reciever they aren't using and power the sub off that.

    You probibly will not be happy using a car sub in your house. If you already own the sub and its sitting collecting dust then go for it, but if you have to buy the sub, do yourself a favor and buy one intended for home use. Its not that big a hassle to order it. I recomend going to the partsexpress.com website and go to the techtalk section. There are many postings relating to sub building and sub selection for cheaper setups. Most mentioned on this forum tend to be a little more expensive (no offence guys, but I have never seen anyone build a sub from a $5 driver here) good luck.

    http://www.pesupport.com/cgi-bin/config.pl
     
  4. Robert A

    Robert A Stunt Coordinator

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    I built this budget subwoofer for a guy.

    front view
    back view

    It was a box I built for a guy on a budget. It has two of the dayton 8" papaer cone woofers (PE# 295-310) and the 120w plate amp (PE# 300-792) back when it was on sale for $79. It as been a while since I built it so I don't remember the exact details of it. But, for the price, it sounded pretty good. I was really impressed with the little 8" woofers. The box has a three inch port. The woofers were $40 together and the amp $79 so total price was about $120. It is used in an apartment.

    It is certainly not a tempest but it was wonderful for him. I would not buy a subwoofer from a local retailer unless they are having a really killer sale. You can order a sub online and get one much more suited to your needs and for a much better price.

    If you're interested I can call my friend and get the dimensions on the box. I usually keep the box plans I make but this was quite a while ago and I'm not certain where it is.

    -Rob
     
  5. TimForman

    TimForman Supporting Actor

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    That's a nice try Robert but Joe was looking for $5 drivers. [​IMG]

    Travis: I second the idea of ordering on-line. I live in a fairly metropolitan area and I can't recommend a local retailer I'd buy from. I don't lump Adire Audio into that group by the way. They're awesome.
     
  6. Joe Ku

    Joe Ku Stunt Coordinator

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    I wasn't looking for $5 drivers, just saw some projects using them... just to clear the record[​IMG]... i would recomend buying through parts express also, as they are a great company to deal with. They stand behind the products they sell. The dayton quatro line are supposed to make great inexpensive home subs.
     
  7. Justin Ward

    Justin Ward Supporting Actor

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    I finally heard the dual-Shiva sub I designed for my friend today. It was awesome. The sealed sub was deep and very tight sounding. The Shiva makes a great driver in the car or in the home. I also let him audition the ported Tempest I have. He was really impressed by the extremely loud bass sweep at the beginning of LOTR.

    I have been talking to him and eh seems to understadn why boomy bass isn't the best. Just for fun though, he trounced all over another guy with two consdierably more expensive 12" drivers. He was really happy with that.
     
  8. TimForman

    TimForman Supporting Actor

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    Another victory for knowledge. [​IMG]
     
  9. Chris Tsutsui

    Chris Tsutsui Screenwriter

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    I have done some testing with car audio subs and I've concluded car "subwoofer" designs do not equate well at all in a home theater environment.

    I used a 10" JL Audio W0 in a sealed box that measured out to about 1.5 cubic feet (was built to JL audio's spec). When I used a 250W plate amp to power this guy, I got absolutely minimal bass output. I had to corner load this sub and stand in a corner as well to hear some kind of bass, and this was with the plate amp turned hot.

    Yes the driver was definitly moving a lot of air as it was close to xmax which made me fear I was going to fry a VC.

    Then I tried a Dual 10" Sealed PPI subwoofer box. This one sounded very similar to the JL Audio sub only capable of a little more SPL. (Maybe 3db or so) This one too had to be corner loaded and the "bass sound quality" was still far lacking and was on the fatiguing "boomy" side.

    In a car, these two subs sound powerful and have some punch, but when put into a home (which some ppl will call 4pi), the subs just lose everything.

    If you end up buying $5-10 woofers, don't expect a large amount of bass. The drivers above retailed for about $100 and had barely any use in a "home".
     
  10. TimForman

    TimForman Supporting Actor

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  11. Rob Formica

    Rob Formica Stunt Coordinator

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    Would the inverse also hold true? ... home-audio speakers would do poorly in the auto environment? I know Adire sells shiva/tempest for both... but most car audio forums are SPL oriented, so there is little mention of these.

    I mean that if the cabin gain is supposed to correct the car audio units, it would make the home ones peaky?

    Just throwing out some thoughts...
    Rob
     
  12. TimForman

    TimForman Supporting Actor

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    Hey Chris,
    How's that Tempest car sub of yours working out? Do you think you should've used a "car" driver? Sounds like Justin's pleased with the Shiva one. Did you tune it specifically for the small space? Other than subs, I do see difficulty with using home audio mids, tweets and the like. Some full range drivers like Tang Bands would probably do well but I think you'd have to be pretty selective in general. Maybe better to stick with car drivers in those situations. Anybody with experience here?
     
  13. Justin Ward

    Justin Ward Supporting Actor

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    I don't see why the Shiva/Tempest coulnd't be used for SPL as well. I mean really doesn't it all come down to the drivers displacement? The Shiva has more displacement than most 12" car drivers I've seen. And my Tempest has more displacement than a Stroker 15 which seems to have quite a following.

    The dual Shiva setup I desgined had some pretty wicked SPL. It was hooked up to a 600 watt(at 2 ohm) JBL amp I believe, and it was very impressive, especcially for a sealed and sound quality it also possessed.
     
  14. Rob Formica

    Rob Formica Stunt Coordinator

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    I think that SPL guys prefer subs with large x-max but which require smaller enclosures than the shiva/tempests... it's easier to fit 4 of them into the trunk of a civic that way... [​IMG]
     
  15. TimForman

    TimForman Supporting Actor

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    Of course you'll also want to learn to use an arc welder so you can repair the body panels after the welds crack. [​IMG]
     
  16. Mark gas

    Mark gas Second Unit

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  17. Rob Formica

    Rob Formica Stunt Coordinator

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  18. RichardHOS

    RichardHOS Second Unit

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    I just happened to have flipped through the July issue of Popular Science before reading this thread...

    177.6 dB in a Dodge Caravan. [​IMG]
     
  19. Mark gas

    Mark gas Second Unit

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  20. TimForman

    TimForman Supporting Actor

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