How important is frequency response in a subwoofer?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Allen Longcor, Nov 26, 2001.

  1. Allen Longcor

    Allen Longcor Supporting Actor

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    I'm still looking at subwoofers and was wondering how important the frequency response is. In particular on the low end. My friend has a Sony sub that goes down to 20Hz. The ones I'm looking at don't go down that low, but they seem to be better quality subs. Can someone enlighten me on this aspect of subs and what I should look for. Also, what about the high end? How high should it go since I haven't really looked at that in my research.
     
  2. Saurav

    Saurav Cinematographer

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    Well, everything else being equal, more is better, but obviously, everything else is not equal. For HT, I'm pretty sure you'll need response down into the 20s, probably even lower. However, quality bass down that low costs money, so again, you need to decide what your priorities vis-a-vis quality and quantity are. For music, as long as you aren't into organ music, mid to low 30s is probably enough. At the upper end, your sub needs to blend in with your main speakers, so it needs to go as high as your mains can go low. Usually, an octave of overlap is good. An octave is a doubling of frequency, so if your mains go down to 50 Hz (-3 dB), it's good if your sub can go up to 100 Hz (again, -3 dB). Of course, these aren't hard and fast rules.
     
  3. Bob_M

    Bob_M Stunt Coordinator

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    Allen,
    I suggest you take a look at this page. IT has some great info on subs.
    http://www.svsubwoofers.com/faqs.htm
    Side note:
    I know you said your friend sub goes down to 20Hz but that in only half the spec. You really need to know how many DB's will that sub hit at 20Hz. This is one of many ways to compare subs via objective data. I am by no means an expert but that is my understanding.
    Good luck
    Bob
     
  4. Allen Longcor

    Allen Longcor Supporting Actor

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    Ok so if I were to do equal amounts of HT and music listening would 25-30 Hz on the low end be ok if it was from a quality sub? I'm looking at the PSB Subsonic 5, Athena P2, Acoustic Research ARS112, Cerwin Vega LW12, and my friend likes his Sony SA-WM40. Any recommendations between those?
     
  5. Tom Vodhanel

    Tom Vodhanel Cinematographer

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    One important thing to remember...just because a manufacturer *specs* a subwoofer to say 20hz...does NOT mean you'll get quality performance from the unit at 20hz in your room!

    IMO...modern DVDs generally extend to the 21-24hz range with high amptitude.(on action oriented 5.1 discs). There's a ahndful that extend well
     
  6. Roy Wallace

    Roy Wallace Stunt Coordinator

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    I am also planning a sub as the budget allows. I just followed the link to SVS ( thanks Bob!), and I must say, what a great pile of information. In regards to these SVS units, what do you experienced HT guys think of them?
    They look impressive. Up here, about the only affordable powered units I have seen are Altec Lansing and JBL's, but I have not really started to look in earnest.
    Give me some guidance. [​IMG]
    Roy Wallace
     
  7. Martice

    Martice Screenwriter

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    Although HSU is a very good sub "for the money", I just purchased a 12" from Acoustic-Visions.com at an unbelievable price. This sub for me is tight, low and deep. With the total cost being $310.00 (250 watt power plate amp is $125.00 extra)
    Here is the link -Acosutic Visions
    Check them out for savings without skimping on performance.
     
  8. Kevin_W

    Kevin_W Second Unit

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    Allen, what's your budget? Once you set that, you can then work on getting the most you can for the money you're willing to spend. I think your buddy's Sony is one of the better performing ~$200 subs (according the praises heard on this forum) out there, but if you can afford ~$500 Tom's suggestion is right on... but if you can afford $1000 well... and so on.

    Kevin
     
  9. Mal P

    Mal P Stunt Coordinator

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    What if you were running all the speakers as small in a HT setup, and you had a high cross-over (say 100hz). Would a subwoofer need to go lower than normal in such a circumstance?

    Or could say the VTF-2 be able to handle such a workload easily?

    Thanks,

    Mal
     
  10. JerryW

    JerryW Supporting Actor

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    I second Martice's advice. You can get a custom powered sub (in any color you want) for $500 shipped that will go well below 20Hz. Drop Kyle an email at Acoustic Visions and see what he can do for ya.
     
  11. Thomas_Berg

    Thomas_Berg Screenwriter

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    wow. i'm really surprised there hasnt been an all-out recommendation for SVS. (just goes to show how humble and objective the makers are! [​IMG])
    if you want serious bass for ~$500, get an SVS 25-31CS ($369) and buy a separate one-channel amp for around $100. this will blow almost anything else (in the price range) out of the water.
     
  12. Scott Page

    Scott Page Stunt Coordinator

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    Boy, this thread more than any I have seen, just shows how classy the guys are at SVS. Here is Tom recommending the the competition (Hsu).

    WOW! If I had not built my own SVS clone, SVS is what I would buy. And I was sold on Hsu before I discovered SVS subs.

    My advice to anyone is if you don't want to build your own, then buy an SVS sub. If you don't like "round", ok get one of the Hsu boxes (but round is verrry gooood!). PERIOD, END OF STORY! DON'T LOOK ELSEWHERE!

    Of course this is just my opinion, please don't bash me if you love your Not-SVS sub.
     
  13. Allen Longcor

    Allen Longcor Supporting Actor

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    Well I'll set my budget at around $500 tops. Here is what I have/will have by the end of the year:

    Onkyo 595 receiver (shipping as I type)

    Onkyo CD player (also shipping, forget model number)

    Eosone RSF400 as Front speakers

    Energy e:xl 15 bookshelf speakers as Rear speakers

    Polk CS245i center channel (when I get the money)

    All of this connected by 12 gauge speaker wire ordered cheap from Parts Express thanks to a post on this board. I also have banana plugs ordered from Parts Express on their way. Ok so now back to the subs. I won't have the money for awhile but I would like to get a quality sub. My HT setup will be in my bedroom, which is normal sized. Now that I have my system budget and components do you guys have any other advice? I'm going to send an email to acoustic visions to see what they can do for me. Thanks for all the help so far guys, I appreciate it.
     
  14. Scott Page

    Scott Page Stunt Coordinator

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    Allen, do you have a particular upgrade plan with regard to your speakers? Otherwise, why are you getting speakers from 3 different mfg's? The surrounds are not quite so important, but your center should be as close a match in tone as possible to your fronts.

    In a bedroom, the Hsu VTF-2 sub recommended by Tom would be more than enough bass and likely the best bang for the buck unless you want to roll-your-own. But look at SVS subs if you have the room for it & budget and plan to move the theater at some point to a bigger room.
     
  15. Allen Longcor

    Allen Longcor Supporting Actor

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    I guess you dont' know that Eosone has been gone for quite awhile now. No one sells their products and finding them anywhere, including ebay, is very rare. I would love to have a center channel from Eosone to match my mains, but I can't find one anywhere. Eosone was a joint venture between Polk and Best Buy. So the closest I can come to matching my mains is a Polk center. I can't afford to get new mains or I would just match the center to them. Hope that clears up why I will have three different brands of speakers in my setup.
     

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