REVIEW: SVS - So powerful it moves my dog :)

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Jeff Savage, Feb 14, 2002.

  1. Jeff Savage

    Jeff Savage Second Unit

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2001
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    0
    Dual SVS 20-39CS+ Review
    Arrival:
    I receive the UPS shipping notice and check the UPS tracking system. Delivery scheduled for Tuesday the 12th. Cool!!! Arrange to take the 12th off (I tell everyone I am getting new woofers and get many strange looks[​IMG]).
    Wake up Tuesday and start getting the equipment rack ready and run the speaker wires. 9:30AM where is the damm truck?! Get some coffee, play with dog, watch some news, get some more coffee. 10:30AM where is that damm truck?! Get some coffee, jump online, do what I can on our "work from home" system, get some more coffee, play with dog. 11:30AM where is that damm truck?! Get some coffee, play with dog, watch a movie, get a soda. 1:30PM where is that damm truck?! Get a soda, get online, check UPS status, still delivery pending. 1:45PM where is that damm truck?! Go outside, pace around, get a soda. 2:00PM where is that damm truck?! Start thinking that I have had too much caffeine. 2:10PM where is that damm truck?! Start getting paranoid "Ron and Tom are playing a cruel trick on me", "UPS hates me", "the Police have arrested the dirver for stealing SVS woofers" well you get the idea. I was in pretty rough shape. Trying to calm down I put in another movie. Can't stop thinking about how much better the movie would be with more bass. 4:30PM where is that damm truck?! Get a soda, peer out windows unaware of time, hear dog barking, slowly come out of coma, realize the doorbell is ringing, open front door, greet UPS man shaking with excitement, wipe drool from face because he is looking very scared, barely hear the UPS guy "say here take this (Samson) I have two other items on the truck", manage to croak out "ok". Get everything inside, the sun comes out, music plays, the choir sings. Time is 5:30PM.
    I unpack everything noting how well all the itmes are packed and remembering not to throw away the port plugs. I try to hook everything up, crap need some adapters, get keys, head to Radio Shack, ignore salesman asking if I need help, spend precious time trying to find adapter, salesman seeing my crazed look asks again, I tell him what I need, he points to the rack right in front of me and asks "is this what you need", I grumble "yes" (ok I think there is a lesson in there smewhere but I was too crazed to care...must get bass), stop and get some food, arrive home. Time is 7:30PM where is that damm...remember that I already have the woofers. Hook up inputs, hook up speaker wires, turn on amps, quickly turn off amps due to large hum coming from woofers, curse, tear up house looking for cheater plug, don't find cheater plug, curse, get keys, go to Home Depot, get cheater plug (I know my way around Home Depot [​IMG]), drive home. Time is 8:30PM. Insert cheater plugs, turn on amps, hear silence, wonder why it is sunny at 8:30 at night, wonder where the music and singing is coming from. Start calibration (read below), curse, reverse wires, take measurement, yell "yippe". Time is 9:50PM. Insert Star Wars EP1, live in bliss for 10 minutes, remember what a nice neighbor I am, turn off system, go to bedroom, crash with a big smile on my face. Time is 10:10PM.
    The Woofers and Powerplants:
    Single 20-39CS/Hafler P505 and Dual 20-39CS+/Samson S1000
    The Room Setup:
    The room where all my equipment is setup has been described as “difficult” by Tom V [​IMG] It is open to the kitchen and several hallways. It also has a tall sloped ceiling. I have a diagram of it on my web page if anyone wants to see it. I live in a ranch style house built on a solid concrete slab. The floor covering is just carpet padding and carpet on top of the concrete. Again there are pictures of the room on my web site if anyone is curious. All three SVS woofers are in the same corner. The new subs are not shown in the pictures because I have not had time to update the web page yet.
    Bass Equipment Hookup:
    The LFE/Subwoofer output of my Harman Kardon AVR510 is split 4 ways. It drives the 2 25W Aura Bass Shakers, the Hafler P505 amplifier, and the Samson S1000 amplifier.
    Calibration:
    All my speakers are set to small with the crossover occuring at 80Hz. The subs were calibrated using the VE subwoofer test section and the Radio Shack analog meter. My previous settings with the single 20-39CS were 76dB with a setting of –3dB on the AVR510 and the gain wide open on the Hafler. Since I am using 2 amplifiers to drive the 3 woofers I had to sit down and think for a bit. I figured that the dual 20-39CS+ combination would put out more bass then the single 20-39CS (duh) so I decided to calibrate the dual woofers first. My reasoning was that if I could get the setting on the AVR510 close to where it was for the 20-39CS with the dual woofer combination I would not have to worry about over driving the single 20-39CS. I opened up the gain all the way on the Samson and started the procedure using the VE test tone. I ended up calibrating the dual woofer package to 78dB on the RS meter. At this level the AVR510 setting was at –8dB!! I got 2dB more output while reducing the AVR510 setting by 5dB!! I then turned on the 20-39CS/Hafler combination with the dual woofer on. The overall dB on the RS meter went DOWN..ACK!!! Well shucks I was bummed. I spent some time troubleshooting and I finally reversed the phase on the 20-39CS by switching the plus and minus speaker wires at the Hafler. Tested again and BINGO adding the 20-39CS now added +3dB on the RS meter (remember that it is not being driven to reference levels due to the reduced setting on the AVR510). So my final settings using the VE test tone using all three woofers are –8dB on the AVR510 and 81dB on the RS meter.
    Listening:
    What can I say but WOW! I had some friends over and everyone was very impressed to say the least (I think I have made some converts). Buying the first SVS took me to one level of bass (you all know that story by now) but adding the dual CS+ woofers put me in heaven. I cannot believe the sound that is coming out of these suckers. Those of you who have these beasts in smaller sealed rooms must just be drunk with bass.
    We watched Star Wars: EP1. The THX intro was amazing, the pod race was amazing, everything was amazing. We watched the intro on Toy Story II. Pant legs were moving and all sorts of things were rattling (time to get some blue tack). Suffice to say everything we watched was spectacular.
    Another indication on how great these woofers are comes from my dog. Now my dog Java is very used to high sound levels by now and nothing bothers her. Normally she will curl up and sleep during movies. However, during these demos whenever there was a big explosion or a bunch of bass effects she would leap up on all four legs and start looking around to see why the world was ending [​IMG] That is some powerful bass!!
    Conclusion:
    Awesome!! I am going to play around with port plugging next.
    I am very happy right now but the thing is that I have a spare channel on my Hafler just sitting there unused. I think that I need to get another 20-39CS to keep it company [​IMG] Can you ever have enough bass? Nah [​IMG]
    Laters,
    Jeff
     
  2. Richard Travale

    Richard Travale Producer

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2001
    Messages:
    3,425
    Likes Received:
    12
    Location:
    The Island, Canada
    Real Name:
    Rich Travale
    Great review Jeff. Let us know how things go with your neighbours, especially if you get the other CS [​IMG]
     
  3. Troy LaMont

    Troy LaMont Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 1999
    Messages:
    849
    Likes Received:
    0
    Jeff,

    Congrats! That was the funniest thing I've read...(it's so funny because I feel your pain).

    I hate waiting on new equipment to arrive, but that comes with the turf.

    Good luck.

    Hopefully soon I'll be living out this same exact scenario (20-39 CS).

    Troy
     
  4. John Stone

    John Stone Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2001
    Messages:
    680
    Likes Received:
    0
    Jeff, excellent review! Very detailed, and I really enjoyed your writing and wit.
    I know a little something about the "SVS on a UPS truck" torture game. I had my SVS shipped via 2-day air and UPS, as usual, blew it (on a Friday, of all days). I had to wait a whole extra weekend. [​IMG]
    Enjoy! [​IMG]
     
  5. felix_suwarno

    felix_suwarno Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2001
    Messages:
    1,523
    Likes Received:
    0
    be careful with the dog. some animal lover might sue you and you would be in a big trouble.
     
  6. Matt Stryker

    Matt Stryker Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2000
    Messages:
    1,307
    Likes Received:
    0
    Jeff, it could be worse. The first day I cranked my SVS, my dog blew chunks all over the floor.
     
  7. Keith Mickunas

    Keith Mickunas Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 1998
    Messages:
    2,041
    Likes Received:
    0
    I've heard several people talk about nausea when it comes to SVS. Happily I found Jeff's system to be quite pleasing. The first time I was at his house was when he just had a single 20-39. Then I thought the bass was real good, better than anything I've heard before. But then I'd never heard an SVS or high end sub before that. Back then I found his Klipsch to be a bit harsh for my tastes, as he was really pumping out the sound to show me what they could do. He even demonstrated how he could bottom it out, which was scary to say the least. This time it was way better. The bass is wonderful, so smooth, tight and full, yet he's got it calibrated well so its not overpowering. However I think it helps balance out the Klipsch a good deal and makes the whole system sound good. Even though he was pumping out insane levels of bass, which were not having any trouble filling his house (and vibrating the cabinets) I had no discomfort whatsoever. Although Java seemed a little nervous.
    Jeff's got an odd room to fill, but the SVS pulls it off without any difficulty. However if he decides to stack 3 25-30's in there just because he has the space, I don't think I want to be anywhere near his house. [​IMG]
     
  8. Tom Vodhanel

    Tom Vodhanel Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 1998
    Messages:
    2,215
    Likes Received:
    8
    Jeff, excellent summary...thanks for taking the time to post your thoughts on the SVs.

    Be careful with reference level playback though...you have the woofs about 8-9dB *hot*...so we're in the 130dB area with all speakers to small.

    115dB for the LFE + 6dB for all the redirected bass +8-9dB for the hot calibration.

    Did I read this correctly,we didn't include a adaptor cable and 1/4" to RCA adaptor with your S1000? (they both should have been packed into the S1000 box).

    TV
     
  9. Jeff Savage

    Jeff Savage Second Unit

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2001
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks for all of the kind word guys. They do rock the house. I thought I would bump this back up to the top to let ya all know that I finally got some pictures posted on my web site and to add some additional thoughts. Just click on the WWW link in my message header to see the pics. For some reason my camera messed up this time around and the colors are not all that great but you should get the idea. I have added the port plugs and I think that I am going to keep them in. I need to spend some more time with this configuration but I like the added extension.

    TV - You guys sent all the proper adapters etc. but I needed some Y-Cables and some other connectors as the Better Cables cable was way too short. As always you guys did an awesome job!

    Again thanks for reading and your kind words. Hope you like the pics.

    Laters,

    Jeff
     
  10. Kevin Cagle

    Kevin Cagle Agent

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2001
    Messages:
    38
    Likes Received:
    0
    All I can say after looking at the pics of your den is...you must be single. Is all that power really necessary? I might eventually upgrade to a single SVS, but 3???
     
  11. EricK

    EricK Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 1999
    Messages:
    287
    Likes Received:
    0
    Very impressive set-up....16x9 HDTV next for you?? [​IMG]
    Those 3 SVS must rock the foundation of the place!
    Eric.
     
  12. Jeff Savage

    Jeff Savage Second Unit

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2001
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    0
     
  13. JohnnyHK

    JohnnyHK Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2002
    Messages:
    105
    Likes Received:
    0
    Did you mean to say "he" there? .... Not that there's anything wrong with that, it's just... [​IMG]
     
  14. Steve Stogel

    Steve Stogel Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2000
    Messages:
    600
    Likes Received:
    0
    I was curious about that, too, Johnny. Again, not that there's anything wrong with that. I guess it would make the SAF a bit easier [​IMG].
    Steve
     
  15. Jeff Savage

    Jeff Savage Second Unit

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2001
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    0
    Nopers not a typo and you are correct that SAF is generally not an issue with stuff like this[​IMG] There are certainly other "downsides" to this humm orientation but spending money on HT and cars is not one of them[​IMG]
    Laters,
    Jeff
     
  16. JohnnyHK

    JohnnyHK Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2002
    Messages:
    105
    Likes Received:
    0
    Good point! Hope I didn't offend. It's not everyday I meet a Mustang drivin', drag racin', triple SVS thumpin' Texan that also flies the rainbow flag. [​IMG]
     
  17. Jeff Savage

    Jeff Savage Second Unit

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2001
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    0
    LOL!! Ok so that was just about every stereotype broken eh? No worries it is all good.

    Laters,

    Jeff
     
  18. Steve Stogel

    Steve Stogel Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2000
    Messages:
    600
    Likes Received:
    0
    Yep, the simple answer to the SAF problem [​IMG]. No offense meant over here, either, Jeff.
    Steve
     
  19. Steve Stogel

    Steve Stogel Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2000
    Messages:
    600
    Likes Received:
    0
    P.S. Forgot to mention how funny I thought the original post was, BTW. Finally understood what the ROTFLMAO acronym meant after reading it [​IMG].
    Steve
     

Share This Page