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Down firing subwoofer on carpet on cement (1 Viewer)


Apr 22, 2003
This is my first append on this site and I certainly appreciate any and all help in advance.

I have a pretty basic home theater setup currently sans subwoofer. I'm starting to look for a subwoofer to round out the system. My completely unfounded and uneducated gut feel about subwoofers would be to look for down firing models because I believe that this would enhance the feeling of directionless audio... in other words, it seems to me like it would disperse better.

However, my setup is in my basement. The floor is carpet on carpet pad on cement foundation. My assumption is that in that case I should specifically avoid a down firing subwoofer because the floor would just absorb the sound.

I'm really just looking for confirmation that my assumptions are correct. Id rather find out that I'm an idiot now, than after I forked out the money for the wrong hardware.


Edward J M

Senior HTF Member
Sep 22, 2002

I would have absolutely no qualms about using a downward firing subwoofer in a carpeted concrete floor application. The floor (carpeted or otherwise) will not "absorb" the bass soundwaves.

Pick the sub that sounds best to you, and don't worry about whether it fires downward, forward, or upward.

And there is nothing "idiotic" about your question - we all ask each other questions, we confirm each other's answers, and we collectively advance our knowledge base. That's the whole purpose of this forum.



James Zos

Supporting Actor
Jan 7, 2002
I have a downword firing 12-inch KSW Klipsch sub (I now wish I had been smarter and done my homework and bought a better sub for the price.) Anyway, on the Klipsch forums, several posters suggested that if you have carpet, like I do, to put a large ceramic tile underneath the sub. I did so and remember hearing an improvement in the sound, but now I could not tell you whether this was merely the power of suggestion since it's been so long since I switched between carpet and the tile. One thing that is good about having the tile is I don't have to worry about the furniture spikes I attached to my sub's feet piercing the landlord's carpet. Someone said the spiked sub might "skitter" on the tile, but my sub is heavy enough that this doesn't happen.

James Edward

Supporting Actor
May 1, 2000
Miguel- Here is the bottom line: Which way the sub fires won't make much difference, but a concrete slab will never transmit the tactile feel like a wood floor. My only suggestion to you would be to get the biggest, baddest sub you can afford. I would also suggest that if you go with SVS or Hsu, get the lowest tuned sub you can. They seem to energize the air in the room, which is what you'll need, since the floor won't be vibrating at all.

My HT is on a cement slab, and the bass just does not transmit as well as with a suspended wood floor. Friends with half the sub I have get a more tactile feel because their system is on a wood floor. But that's life, so just beware that you'll need a powerful sub to go with the concrete floor.

The above comments apply to movies only; music alone might actually benefit from a tighter environment. I don't listen to music in my HT, so I don't know...

Phil Iturralde

Oct 7, 1998
RX-V1300, it effortlessly cruised while producing impressive 109 dB Fast SPL LFE Peaks (ex. little Boo's crying / laughing, etc.) and along with that sub-sonic air, floor, wall, couch, pant leg moving LFE effects impact (SVS 25-31PCi) was what I documented in my RX-V1300 review, ... the RX-V1300 HT quality overall full-frequency spectrum balance of reproduced sounds that were "more revealing, w/improved imaging, vocal / instrument presence/location/placement; more dynamically linear, w/expanded soundstage & depth"!!! :D (associated speakers Do Make a Difference - JBL S26 x6 & S-Center)
I monitored the 109 dB @ my 'sweet spot', approx. 9' from my Center and 12' from my SVS in the right front corner.

The following post (hot-linked) is my HTF SVS 25-31PCi review (APR 12th '02) and my subjective & tactile description still holds true today, except now I have improved linear dynamics overall with my Yamaha RX-V1300 (HT Spot RX-V1300 review).

For another subjective & objective review w/graphs, read John E. Johnson, Jr. Product Review SVS 25-31 PCi Powered Subwoofer - December, 2002.

I personally would recommend any SVS Cylinder sub, or their new traditional Box sub Model PB1-ISD for a little more money than the SVS 25-31PCi. The PB1-ISD performance is basically a SVS 25-31PCi (22 Hz tuned).

Hope this helps,

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