SVS PB12-ISD or HSU STF-3 for music?

Discussion in 'Speakers & Subwoofers' started by TylerCG, Jan 31, 2005.

  1. TylerCG

    TylerCG Auditioning

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    I am interested in both of these subwoofers to add some punch and extension to my music. I'm into the integration, but I also want this thing to be able to step up and shine when I want to show off.

    All other things aside, and assuming all variables are constant, which of these two subs, when sitting in the same place, in the same room, will be more capable musically? The sub will see 95% musical duty, 5% home theater.
     
  2. Ilkka R

    Ilkka R Second Unit

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    Here you can find a review.

     
  3. Bryan P

    Bryan P Extra

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    My recommendation for 95% music would be a subwoofer that didn't exist at the time of the SVS PB12-ISD vs. Hsu STF-2 faceoff: the SVS PB10-ISD. The driver in the PB10 was based on lessons learned in the design of the 12" Ultra driver. It offers excellent transient response and clean output.
     
  4. Max F

    Max F Second Unit

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    For less than the price of both those subs, i would build my self a Tempest (15") sub in a sealed (for music) enclosure. Or for deeper bass, build an ported enclosure and buy an BFD and EQ the frequency responce (flat to maybe 15hz) - it would sound great for music too.[​IMG]

    Other than that, either one of those two (SVS or HSU) would be a great sub. Too bad you can't listen to both in your room.
     
  5. paul clipsel

    paul clipsel Stunt Coordinator

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    My main system has the VTF-3MK2 and my bedroom has the STF-2 (with Ascends). Both are excellent for music. I am not a movie fan preferring good music over Hollywood hype any day. Both my systems are used 90-95% of the time for CD music. Hsu would be my choice if you want a subwoofer not to get in the way of your music.

    PC
     
  6. TylerCG

    TylerCG Auditioning

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    "My recommendation for 95% music would be a subwoofer that didn't exist at the time of the SVS PB12-ISD vs. Hsu STF-2 faceoff: the SVS PB10-ISD. The driver in the PB10 was based on lessons learned in the design of the 12" Ultra driver. It offers excellent transient response and clean output."

    True, but will the PB10 play as LOUD as the PB12?
     
  7. paul clipsel

    paul clipsel Stunt Coordinator

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    I notice on Hsu's forum that the STF-3 will be one of the Hsu models that will get its own optional plug in turbocharger. Although numbers where not disclosed according to Hsu it will be like adding another subwoofer and give the subwoofer more frequency extension. The bad part is my STF-2 is not on the add-on turbo list but its good that my VTF-3MK2 is. Something else to consider.

    PC
     
  8. chrisCo

    chrisCo Extra

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    Bryan P,
    If the PB-10 is evolutionary in the respect that it benefits from lessons learned with the PB-12 when do you think someone should consider the a PB-12 ISD over the PB-10?
     
  9. SVS-Ron

    SVS-Ron Screenwriter

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    Guys,

    The PB10-ISD is certainly the newer sub, but it's not like we stop improving subs like the PB12-ISD either. The latter sub has more clean headroom than the PB10-ISD (which is saying quite alot). In larger rooms or where someone wants the uttmost accuracy with music at high SPLs, this can be a significant difference. Given it costs a good bit more than the PB10-ISD, this is as it should be.

    I can't say either SVS is a better value than the other really. They have different feature sets, and costs are significantly different.

    Certainly if someone said "money's not an issue" I know I'd pick the PB12-ISD.

    Vastly better than its younger brother? No.

    Somewhat better in most every regard? Yes.

    Is one a better "bang for the buck"? Not really.

    Ron
     
  10. Peter Marcks

    Peter Marcks Stunt Coordinator

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    Hello all,

    It is generally not always easy to optimize a subwoofer for music. One has to take into account listening preferences, room layout, subwoofer placement options available, system characteristics, etc.

    We can do a lot to help users optimize for music. Dr. Hsu has an almost uncanny understanding of room characteristics, and knows how to help people set up properly for music in various room types. In fact, he originally started working on low distortion and high output subwoofers primarily for music only systems, to provide the deep foundation that was missing from most loudspeakers.

    That said, not everyone wants our help, even some reviewers! We just try to do the best that we can to assist those who are willing to be helped. We stand by the sound quality of our products 100%, naturally.

    On a side note, we will be offering a performance enhancing option for users of current STF-3, VTF-2 MKII, and VTF-3 MKII subwoofers, based on new technology. This upgrade will be a great and cost-effective way to help future-proof the product. Keep your eyes open for more details in the coming months.

    Finally, do not in any way hesitate to try out various brands of subwoofers. There are several well regarded brands which produce very good sounding subwoofers, including Velodyne, Audio Concepts Incorporated, Vandersteen, Onix, James Audio, Paradigm, and so on and so forth.
     
  11. Bryan P

    Bryan P Extra

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    Based on my own experience, I prefer the sound of my SVS PB10 on music to that of even my SVS PC-Plus. Will the PB10 play as loud as the PC-Plus? Certainly not. But played within its limits, I find the sound of the PB10 to be superior on music.

    Speaking for myself, I would buy a PC-ISD subwoofer instead of a PB10 if I needed the somewhat higher maximum output or needed the internal crossover or if my primary use was home theater instead of music.

    I can sympathize with the position of SVS. From a short term business perspective, it seems that the PB10 may be "too good". I think it is a good indication of the quality of SVS management, however. The best companies over the long term seem to be willing to move forward and bring out new products even if they end up competing with themselves in the short term.
     
  12. WayneO

    WayneO Supporting Actor

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    Yeah, and don't forget the other 3 letter company(on both sides). Funny how they each pretend the other doesn't exist when making recommendations. Thank god I lost interest in the subwoofer d!ck swinging a long time ago, it's the most pathetic aspect of all the AV forums.

    Anyway, if the sub is accurate when playing music, it is by definition musical, unless you prefer some distinct sound that doesn't exist from the original source. I beleive both to be considered are and with proper setup either will make you happy.
     
  13. John Pine

    John Pine Supporting Actor

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    “Yeah, and don't forget the other 3 letter company(on both sides). Funny how they each pretend the other doesn't exist when making recommendations. Thank god I lost interest in the subwoofer d!ck swinging a long time ago, it's the most pathetic aspect of all the AV forums.”

    WayneO: Man...I was thinking the exact same thing! But you said it a lot better than I could have! Good job Wayne!
     
  14. MikeLi

    MikeLi Supporting Actor

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    You might want to check out the new subs at av123.com

    Those that have big SVS subs as myself like the SVS for heart pounding HT and they do a good job on music but a 10 or 12" sub for music should be all you need and would also probably be ok for HT as long as you didn't mind the walls not rocking. Anyway check them out and read what some of the reviewers are saying about them. I am more into HT and love my SVS PB12/+ultra... was called the PB2ultra when bought several years ago. I like it for the small amount of music we listen to in our Family Room/HT area as well but I might get an Onix sub from AV123.com just to try it out on the music side. There are those that have both and just use a switcher. True audiophiles like the smaller subs saying they are tighter and faster and that they sound better with certain kinds of music. Good luck
     
  15. SVS-Ron

    SVS-Ron Screenwriter

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    "Funny how they each pretend the other doesn't exist when making recommendations."

    That's pretty funny Wayne, of course we feel there's no need for swinging any anatomy at all ;^)

    My post was simply to address the PB10-ISD and its relationship to other products we're shipping today.

    Regarding comparisons, when you have one as objectively done and as fair as what Ed Mullen conducted already (even the subjective portion was carefully run to eliminate bias. The expert listener didn't know what brand was playing and by my read of the review, could not have cared less what brand WAS playing)... well there's not much to add really (or shouldn't be). It stands on its own as a stellar example of what this industry could use more of. It takes out the "Pixie Dust" factor of documenting performance very quickly. Tom Nousaine does very similar testing after all, but is necessarily limited in the length and frequency of in-depth work like this.

    I bet TN wishes he could publish more stuff this thorough and revealing.

    Ron
     
  16. Peter Marcks

    Peter Marcks Stunt Coordinator

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    Good evening gentlemen,

    Sound quality is generally considered to be a very personal and subjective concept. Even so, placement and setup options, system components, individual taste in music all help to shape the final result. We always recommend using your own music and comparing in your own home, if possible. This is much better, in my opinion, than using one test subject to form your opinion for you. With our help in setting up the subwoofer, we feel very confident that our products will more than hold their own with respect to sound quality, dynamic compression limits, and low frequency output in your room. We will always do our best to help consumers maximize sound quality in each of their rooms.

    Cheers
     
  17. Peter Marcks

    Peter Marcks Stunt Coordinator

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    Hello WayneO,


    You mean JBL? [​IMG]

    In all seriousness, these "3 letter" companies (although technically we are not a 3 letter company!) get more than their fair share of recommendations. The general idea here is to broaden people's scope on what brands they look at. There are many good quality audio companies, it's just that most people who are new to the forums never learn about them.

    Sincerely,
     
  18. Peter Marcks

    Peter Marcks Stunt Coordinator

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    Jack, Jack, Jack...


    We are not yet ready to make all the details public. Hopefully in the next few months we will be able to say more.

    Thanks for understanding. [​IMG]
     

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