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Just ordered a PSA (Power Sound Audio) 15S subwoofer (2 Viewers)

Carlo Medina

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The main reason my first "serious" sub was sealed was because I listen to a lot of music. And yes, I know well-built ported subs can be just as musical, but I also wanted a smaller footprint because I just can't have something the size of the ported models in the bedroom. Believe me, the 15S is already pushing the bounds of good (decor) taste for my room. Thank goodness Tom you put a wonderful (to my eyes) finish on it. Manages to feel industrial (in a good way) and refined at the same time.

I just bought the Blu-Ray of Zep's How the West Was Won. That will be playing tonight. I may have to crank it up a tad past my normal listening volume...
 

Tom Vodhanel

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The main reason my first "serious" sub was sealed was because I listen to a lot of music. And yes, I know well-built ported subs can be just as musical, but I also wanted a smaller footprint because I just can't have something the size of the ported models in the bedroom. Believe me, the 15S is already pushing the bounds of good (decor) taste for my room. Thank goodness Tom you put a wonderful (to my eyes) finish on it. Manages to feel industrial (in a good way) and refined at the same time.

I just bought the Blu-Ray of Zep's How the West Was Won. That will be playing tonight. I may have to crank it up a tad past my normal listening volume...

Back in the olden days, ported subs often earned their reputation as "good for movies, bad for music". To be honest, even today there's plenty of examples that do the same( the majority of ported subs perhaps). And trust me, some of my old designs would get caught in this net as well.

Some have had such poor experience with ported subs they won't even consider ported again. I never try to push the subject in chat/email/phone.

Tom V.
Power Sound Audio
 

Carlo Medina

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All I know is that I find your sealed 15S to be very musical and powerful. Good for both music and movies. The only reason I also purchased a Hsu was to try out the two of the most respected sub makers working today. I figured if I was going to try a different manufacturer I'd also try out a ported model as well. Because doing web research is one thing, but actually being able to judge with your own ears...I couldn't pass up the opportunity.

I haven't had enough time with the Hsu to put it through it's paces so I've held back from writing a critical review of that until I have time, but my initial thoughts are positive. I didn't have any immediate negative thoughts on its musicality but again, I've had nearly three weeks longer with the PSA.

I don't plan on doing a "shootout" or "comparison" because they're apples and oranges in the sense that one's ported and the other isn't. They've both made a great impression on me and neither are going back to their respective stores, though I'm within the return period on both. The only way they leave is via upgrade in the future, when I have a bigger room, but to be honest even then I may just buy a matching second sub rather than replace.
 

Tom Vodhanel

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All I know is that I find your sealed 15S to be very musical and powerful. Good for both music and movies. The only reason I also purchased a Hsu was to try out the two of the most respected sub makers working today. I figured if I was going to try a different manufacturer I'd also try out a ported model as well. Because doing web research is one thing, but actually being able to judge with your own ears...I couldn't pass up the opportunity.

I haven't had enough time with the Hsu to put it through it's paces so I've held back from writing a critical review of that until I have time, but my initial thoughts are positive. I didn't have any immediate negative thoughts on its musicality but again, I've had nearly three weeks longer with the PSA.

I don't plan on doing a "shootout" or "comparison" because they're apples and oranges in the sense that one's ported and the other isn't. They've both made a great impression on me and neither are going back to their respective stores, though I'm within the return period on both. The only way they leave is via upgrade in the future, when I have a bigger room, but to be honest even then I may just buy a matching second sub rather than replace.

Hsu is very good. All of their subwoofers will offer excellent sound quality and value. Once you have it optimized I would expect it to sound excellent with both movies and music.

TV
 
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Clinton McClure

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Reading his thread (and what an exciting one it is!), I am beginning to wonder how my 1st gen Paradigm Servo-15 would stack up against the HSU and PSA subs.
 

Tom Vodhanel

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Reading his thread (and what an exciting one it is!), I am beginning to wonder how my 1st gen Paradigm Servo-15 would stack up against the HSU and PSA subs.

Those are almost 25 year old tech..:) But Tom Nosuaine considered them a "reference" product in their day which is high praise. Without getting into every nuance a subs's performance can be separated three ways. Clean otuput. Frequency response, overall sound quality. A modern high quality sealed 15(hsu uls15 or dare I say it, the 15S for example) will have the potential to extend much deeper, I'd say double the output capabilities(averaged from 15-100hz---with the differences weighted to the mid/upper bass range), and a bit better overall sound quality as well.

One of the things pretty much every did back in those days was fairly steep electrical filtering. IIRC the servo15 (v1 and v2) had a 12-18dB HP right around 20hz. These days, especially with modern DSP on-board, a adventurous engineer can avoid most/all of the negative impact associated with those filters and still ensure "bullet - proof" longevity for the product.

Tom V.
Power Sound Audio
 

Clinton McClure

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Thanks for the reply, Tom. Insightful as always! Perhaps some day in the near future, I can look at upgrading to a newer, more efficient sub.
 

Tom Vodhanel

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Thanks for the reply, Tom. Insightful as always! Perhaps some day in the near future, I can look at upgrading to a newer, more efficient sub.

Meh, if it's still doing it for you, I wouldn't worry about upgrading. I found a link to some measurements on the v2 servo15. You can see the highpass(22hz?) and how it affects the FR <25hz. https://hometheaterhifi.com/volume_12_3/paradigm-servo-15-subwoofer-7-2005-part-1.html

Outside you're down 17dB from 25hz to 15hz.

Also, for anyone following along here's a shot of our updated 18(new 18 is on the right). The main visual difference is the different surround which ended up with a darker hue.


Tom V.
Power Sound Audio
 

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Carlo Medina

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Meh, if it's still doing it for you, I wouldn't worry about upgrading. I found a link to some measurements on the v2 servo15. You can see the highpass(22hz?) and how it affects the FR <25hz. https://hometheaterhifi.com/volume_12_3/paradigm-servo-15-subwoofer-7-2005-part-1.html

Outside you're down 17dB from 25hz to 15hz.

Also, for anyone following along here's a shot of our updated 18(new 18 is on the right). The main visual difference is the different surround which ended up with a darker hue.


Tom V.
Power Sound Audio
 

Tom Vodhanel

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I must have watched that 100x(at least). Such a good flick. The first time I watched it was with a freind of mine who played bass for a (sort of) bigger rock band. They had videos on MTV if that means anything lol. Anyway. He was saying how much of it was actually JUST LIKE touring. I specifically remember the scene when they are lost in a maze of corridors back stage and can't find the entryway to the stage(with the audience screaming for them to enter!). He said that happened to them more than once..:)

I would have him over to demo my system/new sub ideas. I'd say "now this is with the bass levels a little hot so if you want me to turn them down..." No, no, this is how they SHOULD be. I'm always telling everyone they need to turn up the bass tracks louder during mastering...leave it just like this!".

Tom V.
Power Sound Audio
 

Carlo Medina

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Tom, I've probably watched that film nearly as many times. That, along with Blazing Saddles and Tropic Thunder, I consider my holy trinity of comedies. Movies I watch and quote over and over again.

Speaking of turning the bass up...tell that to Lars and James on "...And Justice For All" :rolling-smiley:

I recall hearing that many musicians for a long time they could not enjoy This Is Spinal Tap because they felt like it was mocking them...accurately. I think Steven Tyler was one of those. Oh yeah, I found the article:

http://ultimateclassicrock.com/joe-perry-steven-tyler-spinal-tap/

When you upgrade the 15" driver (which I'm sure you will, technology always marches on) I'll look forward to your impression and if it's a big enough improvement over the one I just bought, will you be selling the upgraded driver/reprogrammed amp package like you do with the SEs?

Currently enjoying this album on the PSA 15S: Alice in Chains (Eponymous)
 

Carlo Medina

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Tom Vodhanel

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When you upgrade the 15" driver (which I'm sure you will, technology always marches on) I'll look forward to your impression and if it's a big enough improvement over the one I just bought, will you be selling the upgraded driver/reprogrammed amp package like you do with the SEs?


We actually do "running changes/upgrades" on the drivers and amps on a fairly regular basis. Both the 15 inch and 18 inch have been updated a multiple times since they were introduced. The update can be for performance purposes, longevity purposes, assembly consistency, or even aesthetic consistency. Unless there's a significant(easily audible) improvement it's nothing we really make a big deal about.

The *SE* upgrade you referenced is a good example. Pretty significant (audible) benefits but it also came with a big cost increase. So we wanted to make sure we informed everyone that although we were forced to increase the price on the subwoofers, there were performance gains involved we felt were well worth the price differences. And a byproduct of that was also offering the *SE* upgrade kits.

In this case, I wouldn't describe the update as offering a significant performance difference so we're not going to offer upgrades. If it wasn't a clearly visible difference I wouldn't have even mentioned it..:)

Tom V.
Power Sound Audio
 

Tom Vodhanel

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Had the shop manager snap a few pictures during a dual V1801 build this week.

Tom V.
Power Sound Audio
 

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