Subwoofers?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by ChristopherBer, Mar 11, 2003.

  1. ChristopherBer

    ChristopherBer Stunt Coordinator

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    Where did subwoofers originate from? Who invented the first one? What is the history of them? Thanks...[​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  2. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    They go way back, Christopher.
     
  3. Rick_Brown

    Rick_Brown Second Unit

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    Jack, I disagree with you somewhat. I've been into audio and video since the mid 60's and subwoofers for residential use is a fairly recent phenom. Woofers? Sure they have been around forever. Subwoofers? I believe they only became popular with the advent of home theater in the late 80's.
     
  4. Garrett Lundy

    Garrett Lundy Producer

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    I believe the russians first invented the subwoofer when they put a dog in a submarine.

    Har har har....
     
  5. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    Rick, think back to 1968: The original Infinity Servo-Static I electrostatic speaker system consisted of two largish electrostatic panels crossed over to an eighteen-inch subwoofer (and "subwoofer" was the word used by the company). And that woofer went low.

    There was also, during the 1970s, the Hartley subwoofer (which went up to, if I recall, 24 inches). The Hartley made a lot of news when Mark Levinson included it in his so-called Decca/Quad/Hartley hybrid speaker system (two original Quad electrostatic speakers per side, mated with two Decca ribbon tweeters per side; both panels crossed over to a pair of Hartley subwoofers).

    And who can forget that darling of the high-end audio crowd, perhaps the most famous subwoofer of the 1970s: the Janis W-1 subwoofer.

    Also, in 1976, Dahlquist introduced the DQ-1W "subwoofer" to mate with its legendary DQ-10a phased-array dynamic speaker system. Though Dahlquist literature referred to this 10-inch driver in a sealed enclosure as a "subwoofer," it was not, rolling off as it did by 3 dB at 40 Hz.

    Then Polk Audio, in 1979, introduced the LF-14 "subwoofer" system (two six-inch drivers venting into a 14-inch passive radiator).

    Need I go on?

    (Throughout this entire era, no one used the phrase "home theater.")
     
  6. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    Oh, and even before then, in the 1960s, Electro-Voice (remember them?) used to market a huge all-in-one speaker system called the Electro-Voice Patrician, whose bass output was handled by a massive 30-inch woofer. E-V also marketed this 30-inch driver separately as (you guessed it) a "subwoofer."
     
  7. Tim Fennell

    Tim Fennell Stunt Coordinator

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    Don't forget the SenSurround Subwoofers that came with the movie Earthquake. That goes back to 1974. Those speakers were 18" if I remember right.
     
  8. ChrisWiggles

    ChrisWiggles Producer

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    I think SVS made the first real subwoofer. [​IMG]
     

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