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Just ordered a PSA (Power Sound Audio) 15S subwoofer (1 Viewer)

Tom Vodhanel

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The PSA 15S is a powerful sub. As much research as you did, is box size the only reason you choose a downward firing sub? Front firing is more popular among audiophiles.

When I had one, I had a hardwood platform under it. The deep carpet in my living room did not work well with mine. I've seen discussions about the optimal surface to fire against. Are you going to place yours on a custom surface?

The driver orientation should have no/little effect on the performance. There could have been other variables in play.

Tom V.
Power Sound Audio
 

Tom Vodhanel

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I would ask Tom about it. It just seems that having a solid base under it should be an improvement, or at least desirable. I have an SVS PB12 Plus/2, which Tom also designed, and it has a built-in base plate as well. I would expect the biggest thing is that the air flow from the drivers isn't impeded.

The base designs on the svs models where mainly for style points. Nothing much to do with any performance considerations. Carpet will need to be several inches thick to even BEGIN to have any effect on a subwoofer...and more like 5-6 inches thick for it to be of any audible concern. We actually started with bases on some early PSA subs but it was all styling. They looked cool, but added so much weight and cost to each model we couldn't justify it for long.

Tom V.
Power Sound Audio
 

Tom Vodhanel

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On carpet, with or without a base plate will have a different sound. It's the difference between firing at a surface that reflects or one that absorbs sound, between a crisp burst of bass or a slightly muffled one. Both have their good points and bad points. But beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and it takes a trained ear to hear subtle differences in sound. As long as you are happy, that's what counts.

Carpet won't have any effect, certainly not in a "it's muffling the sound" sense..:)

Well, I should preface that with...With a properly engineered down firing sub.

Tom V.
Power Sound Audio
 

JohnRice

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The base designs on the svs models where mainly for style points. Nothing much to do with any performance considerations. Carpet will need to be several inches thick to even BEGIN to have any effect on a subwoofer...and more like 5-6 inches thick for it to be of any audible concern. We actually started with bases on some early PSA subs but it was all styling. They looked cool, but added so much weight and cost to each model we couldn't justify it for long.

Tom V.
Power Sound Audio
Thanks Tom. And no thanks for making me lust for an S3000i. :cheers:
 

Carlo_M

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Was chatting with Tom about wanting to do the BR 5.1 and my space limitations. He made some great recommendations (some of which I'd been considering like the Rythmik L12 and a 12" Hsu model, both in the $500 range...but to be honest it's just making me want to try and justify the S1500. :rolling-smiley:
 

Luke Cool

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Carpet won't have any effect, certainly not in a "it's muffling the sound" sense..:)
Well, I should preface that with...With a properly engineered down firing sub.
Tom V.
Power Sound Audio
With all the testing you've had to do to honestly say this, I'll have to completely agree with you. This sub will sound at its best no matter where we put it. Place on almost any surface, we will hear no difference. Know we all know that the issues I've had to work through on my downward firing subs (Velodyne & Klipsch) have to be because they are not properly engineered. Thanks for the note Tom.
 
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Tom Vodhanel

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With all the testing you've had to do to honestly say this, I'll have to completely agree with you. This sub will sound at its best no matter where we put it. Place on almost any surface, we will hear no difference. Know we all know that the issues I've had to work through on my downward firing subs (Velodyne & Klipsch) have to be because they are not properly engineered. Thanks for the note Tom.

Well, as I said, that could have been other variables in play. Unless you are comparing two identical subs(except for driver orientation), with identical ancillary equipment, identically calibrated, yadda, yadda...

And even in the above scenario is it the driver orientation itself that causes an audible variation or is the variable simply the changes in the driver(acoustic center of driver) to each reflective boundary?

I will say one needs to ensure adequate clearance between the floor and the driver in a down firing woof...or you will be able to measure changes in the FR.


It's just one of those things we need to keep in mind. Input from users(like you) who have experienced these things is invaluable. But we also have to be careful we don't mix correlation and causation. Then we end up with another myth like...

"big woofers are slow"
"ported subs cannot be accurate/sound good with music"

stuff like that..:)

Tom V.
Power Sound Audio
 

Tom Vodhanel

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Thanks Tom. And no thanks for making me lust for an S3000i. :cheers:
The S3000i has been a steady seller since introduction. It is really a attractive combination of size, deep bass extension(often 7-10hz) and a violent amount of mid and upper bass "punch".

Here's a few shots I grabbed of the slightly larger S3601 being assembled recently.
 

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Robert Crawford

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The S3000i has been a steady seller since introduction. It is really a attractive combination of size, deep bass extension(often 7-10hz) and a violent amount of mid and upper bass "punch".

Here's a few shots I grabbed of the slightly larger S3601 being assembled recently.
Wow!
 

Tom Vodhanel

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Dual 18" drivers....

Holy smoke! :laugh:

If you like that one...

That's a 42 inch LED tv and the compression graphs are all 2m, outside.

Tom V.
Power Sound Audio
 

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JohnRice

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Here's a few shots I grabbed of the slightly larger S3601 being assembled recently.
Believe me, I'm also tempted by the 3601. Size isn't a major consideration, fortunately, and I think it's not much bigger than my PB12 Plus/2 anyway.
 

Mike Frezon

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I'm not very good with graphs...but I know a BIG honkin' subwoofer when I see one (4 18" drivers?!?)...and I can always spot a cute dog, too! :D It looks like he takes good care of the place!

My dogs like bass, too. Just not so big!

full
 

Carlo_M

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I think CalTech can measure it when Tom tests this sub. #earthquakejokes

That dog is probably fairly decent sized, but looks like a newborn puppy next to the sub :laugh:. And the 42" looks like an iPad.

And I cannot emphasize how much of a stupid smile the PSA has put on my face. It's performance is miles ahead of my old 12" Energy sub. Every day the sub sounds better and better. And I'm not sure if it's necessarily "opening up" or "breaking in" - I'll leave it to those who can detect those phenomena to decide if they're applicable to subwoofers. But I will say I'm also learning what to listen for, and how to listen to quality bass reproduction.

Contrast that with my experience this weekend auditioning bookshelf speakers, where I realized my 15-20 year old floorstanders at home can more than hold their own versus recently designed speakers.
 

Tom Vodhanel

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Believe me, I'm also tempted by the 3601. Size isn't a major consideration, fortunately, and I think it's not much bigger than my PB12 Plus/2 anyway.

The S3000i is equally well built..:)
I'm not very good with graphs...but I know a BIG honkin' subwoofer when I see one (4 18" drivers?!?)...and I can always spot a cute dog, too! :D It looks like he takes good care of the place!

My dogs like bass, too. Just not so big!

full

Here's a shot from an older PSA model we had with a 6 inch flared port..:)

Tom V.
Power Sound Audio
 

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JohnRice

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Contrast that with my experience this weekend auditioning bookshelf speakers, where I realized my 15-20 year old floorstanders at home can more than hold their own versus recently designed speakers.
Carlo, was this a mass of speakers piled up with all kinds of switchers and questionable power? It was Best Buy (Magnolia... is there a difference?) wasn't it? The better the speaker, typically the worse they sound in that kind of situation. For one thing, they have no opportunity to produce any kind of soundstage, which is one of the main benefits of a good speaker.
 

Carlo_M

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It was a Magnolia within a Best Buy. A pretty noise-isolated room (from the rest of the store). Yes they did have switchers, but the amp that was being used was very similar to the Elites I have at home (I have the SC-05 and -79, they used last year's model I don't remember the the number). I acknowledge that the situation was less than ideal, and I did what I could to isolate the room, toe and angle the speakers to me, blend the SVS SB-2000 to the best of my ability. Credit the guy for being patient while I monkeyed around with things for about 10 minutes.

So I have no doubt both would sound better in my home than what they did in the store. But the Elac was so underwhelming and disappointing on very many levels, very recessed and dull sounding. The SVS sounded better but a bit bright and forward for my tastes, something which probably wouldn't be "calmed down" in my home. For the SVS my issue was more my personal preference (I prefer as close to a neutral/balanced reproduction as possible) rather than a speaker quality issue. The Elacs...let's just say I'm glad I didn't buy into the internet hype. And to be fair, the hype was for the original Debut line and not for the 2.0, which is what I auditioned.
 

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