HSU or SVS which should I choose?

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by Dave Nelms, Mar 27, 2004.

  1. Dave Nelms

    Dave Nelms Stunt Coordinator

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    I have decided to upgrade my 7 year old subwoofer and I have narrowed down the list to two contenders and I am hoping for a little input from forum members.

    I was hoping to get a sub that can play at least 20 hz and one that will add some more feeling and impact. I was also hoping to find one for under $750 but I could go a little higher if I had to, and right now I see the HSU has their VTF-3 MK2 for around $700. I was also looking at the SVS PCi series.

    Have there been any direct comparisons for these two companies? I know that SVS has a strong following here on the forum and I do not want to upset the apple cart, I am just looking for the most bang for the buck (Literally). My room is small and the SAF is not a factor, tube or box does not matter.

    Any help will be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. MikeLi

    MikeLi Supporting Actor

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    There is usually a reason a product has alot of following and support that is not on its own web site. It is because people have had great sucess and love their SVS's. I just replace dual large NHT's that I thought were pretty good until I put the PB2+ beside them. Wow what a kick in the but surprise. Not even close comparison and I paid more than double for the dual subs 5-6 years ago. You can pretty much go to other sites like AVS and find the same thing. I hear HSU is very good and does have alot of faithful followers I just think not as many.
    Mike
     
  3. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    I disagree with this statement. Obviously there are more SVS supporters on this forum, but that does not mean there are in general. If you look around on other forums there is more of a split between Hsu and SVS supporters.

    I don't think you could go wrong with either. There have been some comparisons between the two companies. Do a search within this forum. The last one I read was sometime last week and the SVS came out a little on top, but both subs are very worthy, both can certainly play to 20Hz, and I think you'd be pretty happy with either.
     
  4. John F. Palacio

    John F. Palacio Supporting Actor

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    I just want to add that, if it matters to you:
    The HSU's are manufactured in China and the SVS's in the USA.

    It matters a lot to me!
     
  5. Schrall_Danny

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    Any offering from these companies will satisfy you. I can say that the PB2-ISD was way to much for my buddies 800 sq living room. It was just to much base. That said, consider the multitude of really sick men on this forum that can't have enough base. [​IMG] I am more than content with the vtf-2 from HSU. I however have a tiny living room that just happens to possess some great acoustic properties.
     
  6. ScottCarr

    ScottCarr Second Unit

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    I work in manufacturing and it was a plus to SVSs's side. But win this case it was more like an extra layer of icing on the cake.

    Never regretted any purchase of the 7 svs subs i have owned
     
  7. CurtisSC

    CurtisSC Screenwriter

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    Dave,

    With you being in Wilmington and Hsu Research in Anaheim, you can easily make an appointment with them and listen to the subs yourself. There are also SVS owners in the area that I am sure would let you visit to check out their subs.
     
  8. John F. Palacio

    John F. Palacio Supporting Actor

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    Schrall_Danny says: "I can say that the PB2-ISD was way to much for my buddies 800 sq living room. It was just to much base."

    With all due respect, Scrall. This is sheer nonsense. If the bass is too loud you turn the sub level down.

    You can NEVER buy a sub that's TOO powerful. It might be too big visually for the room, you might think it's ugly, it might cost too much or maybe it just won't fit in your house. But never too powerful.
     
  9. Bernie_A

    Bernie_A Stunt Coordinator

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    This is something I have been debating as well. While looking for used subs the other day on Audiogon and e-bay I made this observation....I noticed a lot of subs....no....not a lot....but 100's of subs available for sale on the used market. I don't think I saw more than 5 Hsu's and maybe a 2 or 3 SVS's. That alone should tell you something. It sure made my desicion a lot easier. While I lust for an SVS, I am going to go up to Anaheim and audition their subs. I don't think, in either case, I would be disapointed. It will be such an improvement over my Velodyne CHT-10 that it's not even going to funny. Plus, the Hsu VTF-3 in Piano Black matches my Swans so it's probably what I will end up getting. All my stuff is very visible and there is the WAF I have to contend with. My living room looks like an A/V training center as it is. I don't think she would go for one of those SVS water heaters in the coner no matter how nice they are.
     
  10. Robb Roy

    Robb Roy Supporting Actor

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    I have to agree with John -- a B4+ isn't too powerful for a walk-in closet if calibrated correctly. Whether you buy an 8 inch KLH or something a bit more, uh, powerful, you should calibrate.

    Back to the topic at hand...

    Dave,

    I know of two direct (and published) comparisons between these companies.

    Ed reviewed the SVS PB1-ISD and Hsu STF-3 here at HTF. This review was absolutely, unbelievably well done.

    Craig reviewed a single SVS PB2+ with two Hsu VTF-3 Mark IIs over at the Spot. This is also, while a different style than Ed's, an excellent review. It was carried out over a long period of time, and was put together as it went (in fact, it started over at AVS, got ugly, got censored, and was moved to the Spot). Check out about 9 or 10 posts down where lowroller sums everything up nicely.

    Both reviews contain quantitative data as well as subjective listening tests. One compares their entry level offerings, the other compares higher end gear. You seem to be looking at something in between, so any comparisons you'd make based on these reviews will involve guesswork.

    Both companies have rabid followings. That's because both companies make great products at great values. Personally, I favor SVS, but it's not like I'd think you got a bad product if you went with Hsu.

    Good luck in your search!

    -Robb
     
  11. Chester II

    Chester II Stunt Coordinator

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    Dave dude,

    Both companies produce subwoofers that will blow you away. I own a VTF-2 that I use in a 19 foot long by 13 foot wide living room with good acoustic properties and I have to keep my subwoofer on a VERY LOW level. It produces MORE than enough excellent, tight, clean base than I could ever need. Now the somewhat common opinion on most forums is that if your audio set-up is a mix of home theater and music then choose HSU. If the system is only for home theater then pick SVS. I can't comment on the SVS designers but Dr. Hsu has always emphasized quality performance with music in his products.

    Enjoy whatever subwoofer you choose dude,

    Chester
     
  12. Schrall_Danny

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    Lol, you think I insulted someones mother. HEHE, the PB2-ISD produced an overwhelming quantity of base with amazing ease. Neither of us found that quantity of base pleasing. It's that simple, John. What we have here is a simple issue of subjectivity, not objectivity. Thank you anyway for your flamboyant emotional response, it was entertaining. Hsu and SVS are providing the consumer with excellent products, so one can't really go wrong with either offering.
     
  13. MikeLi

    MikeLi Supporting Actor

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    SethH

    >>I hear HSU is very good and does have alot of faithful followers..>>

    What is wrong with that statement both are good companies and I have never heard anyone say they didnt like their sub whether is came from HSU or SVS.




    >>I disagree with this statement. Obviously there are more SVS supporters on this forum, but that does not mean there are in general. If you look around on other forums there is more of a split between Hsu and SVS supporters.>>

    Maybe the HSU forum but not the SVS forum or several others. Maybe people that buy HSU just seem to not post their comments like the ones that buy SVS? who knows but really who cares. The statement below about sums it up.

    I don't think you could go wrong with either. There have been some comparisons between the two companies. Do a search within this forum. The last one I read was sometime last week and the SVS came out a little on top, but both subs are very worthy, both can certainly play to 20Hz, and I think you'd be pretty happy with either.
     
  14. Chester II

    Chester II Stunt Coordinator

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    Dudes,

    I think it's time for a group hug

    Dudes,

    Chester
     
  15. Robb Roy

    Robb Roy Supporting Actor

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    Schrall_Danny,

    I don't think John (or I) meant any offense to you, nor did we take any (at least I didn't, and I highly doubt John did either). The point John was trying to make was that if the bass was overwhelming, the gain should have been turned down on the sub's amp. Was this sub calibrated with an SPL meter and a calibration disk like Avia? A B4+ and a PCi series sub should produce the same volume level in a small room if calibrated correctly.

    Chester,

    You bring up something I don't take offense to, but have never been able to understand. If sub A and sub B both reproduce audio signals at the chosen volume level with identical distortion levels and frequency response, how is one better for music and the other better for home theater? What's more, if one does not have as flat a frequency response, and has more harmonic distortion at the chosen volume levels, how can it be considered better for HT or music? I can see a personal preference for distortion, but that does not make for an objective case as to why one subwoofer is better suited for a particular application.

    -Robb
     
  16. Chester II

    Chester II Stunt Coordinator

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    Robb dude,

    Dude....I have absolutely NO idea.....except that although similiar, the Hsu and SVS are not identical products which accounts for somewhat different characteristics


    Attempting to prevent 12 page thread on the esoteric nature of subwoofer frequency response dudes,

    Chester
     
  17. ScottCHI

    ScottCHI Screenwriter

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    i just want a sub that smells good
     
  18. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    MikeLi:

    Sorry about that. I feel really stupid. I copied the wrong part of the sentence into the quote box. I meant to copy the part about Hsu not having as many fans. Anyway, SVS may be the more popular brand, and is certainly the most popular brand on this forum, but other forums have a little more variance in opinion based on my experience.
     
  19. Dave Nelms

    Dave Nelms Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks to all for all the really great info. I was hoping to get a few responses and I was overwhelmed by all the really good info. This is not the end of my quest for information, only the begining.

    After posting this question I went on the HSU website and asked a question and pow! Dr Hsu replied, and it was even on a weekend. I am going to see if I can get a demo at the Anahiem office. If I am blown away I will be sure to let everyone here know about my mission.

    This is why I love home theater.......
     
  20. Chester II

    Chester II Stunt Coordinator

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    Dave dude,

    Good luck dude. Hey...I'm originally from Long Beach...how's Wilmington these days...as beautiful as I remember it?

    Scott dude,

    Seek and you shall find [​IMG]

    Dudes,

    Chester
     

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