Sub advice

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by RobertCharlotte, Mar 14, 2002.

  1. RobertCharlotte

    RobertCharlotte Supporting Actor

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    I read through several old threads and I still don't feel like I have a good answer to this, so forgive me for asking what I'm sure must be a phenomenally simple question.

    What's the best thing to do with my subwoofer, regardign it's contact with the floor? It sits now on carpet (approx. half-inch cut pile) with padding underneath and plywood flooring below that. Would I see any benefits from spikes, a heavy stone slab below, a heavy stone slab above, or some combination thereof? Because it is on carpet, I did not install the little rubber discs underneath it that came with it, though I do still have them. If I go with the stone slab beneath, should I add those?

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Tom Vodhanel

    Tom Vodhanel Cinematographer

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    There's plenty of claims regarding slabs of concrete,marble,onyx,ect....along with spikes and the such.

    I have yet to see any evidence any of these tweaks works as claimed...and I've never heard nor measured anything to indicate this is worthwhile.

    TV
     
  3. Paul Clarke

    Paul Clarke Supporting Actor

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    Robert,

    I assume the sub is down-firing? Is your system calibrated with an Spl meter and test tones? Run this simple experiment:

    Calibrate again with the sub as is. Keep everything exactly as is: sub level on sub, sub level in receiver. Note the receiver volume setting needed to hit chosen dB level. Now find anything in your house to put under your sub...an end table, a cabinet, a wall mirror, that is hard and flat and at least the same outer dimensions of sub. Even a square or rectangle made out of hardback books will do the trick just so long as the inner surface is filled and relatively flat.

    Run the calibration again. I will bet you dimes to doughnuts that you will either dial the level on the sub and/or the level on the receiver DOWN, even if only a little. In my case the sub level went from 11:30 to 9:30 clock position. The receiver sub level is always set to 0 when I calibrate. It now sits at -5.

    And if you find that the level does not measurably change, how does it sound when playing familiar music?

    I know many will argue that there is nothing 'scientific' about this. But ask yourself...does a large bookshelf style speaker's bass sound better on the carpet or on a stand or platform? Does a tower need feet, spikes or a plinth for better bass response or not? Some will say that the feet or contact spikes or pads on a sub provide sufficient isolation from absorption/reflection effects but I don't buy it. My own experience is what informs me.
     
  4. Jeremy Anderson

    Jeremy Anderson Screenwriter

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    I also had a sub on a carpeted floor. I grabbed $5 worth of concrete slab from Home Depot (one for top and bottom) just to give it a shot, figuring I could always use them in my yard if there was no difference. In my case, I had to cut my sub back 2dB to get back to reference... and that's with a forward-firing Polk PSW350! I also noticed that it tightened up the sound of the sub and brought out bass tones a bit (rather than sounding one-note, which the Polk had always suffered from a bit). For the price, it's worth a shot.
     
  5. RobertCharlotte

    RobertCharlotte Supporting Actor

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    Thanks, everyone. I'll see what happens this weekend.
     

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