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SVS SB-3000's added to Catfisch Cinema (1 Viewer)

DaveF

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Unboxing

I'll start with the basic unboxing. The SVS SB-3000 ship in a single box. It has substantial foam packaging and an ample air gap (several inches) providing passive protection from shipping damage. (See final photo on that.)

In decided what subwoofers to buy, an important consideration was size and weight -- these were equal and maybe more important than price to me. I need someting relatively small to fit my space. And I need something light enough that I could safely get it down the stairs into the basement without destroying my back or the stairs. The SB-3000 is petitie for a 13" woofer sub and only about 50 pounds, boxed. As a side note, I was shipped a pair of SB-4000s by accident. I considered working with SVS to keep them instead of the SB-3000s I originally ordered. I could have made the 4000 fit -- they're on the large size of what I can make work. But at 112 pounds boxed, I was very concerned about how to get them down into the basement. And then once positioned, there was no chance I was ever going to move them again. The 3000's in contrast, I slid down the stairs on a blanket (with due care). And at 50 lbs, if I find time, I can move them around the theater room to try alternate locations.

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Opening up the box, the manual, warranty registration, audio cable, and quick start guide are there (as it typical of most large electronics).
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The grill is resting in foam, separate from the subwoofer. If you order a SoundPath wireless connector, it will be here in the side of the box (I'd already take it out before this photo).
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The SB-3000 is about 50 lbs. If you don't keep boxes, you could cut open the box and easily move the sub to where you want it. If, like me, you keep boxes, then I geting a second person, lifting with your legs :), and pulling the sub out. It's a bit awkard reaching into the box, but it's straightforward.
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My two SVS SB-3000 subwoofers.
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One of the boxes looked like it was speared through during shipment. But the subwoofer wasn't dinged or damaged at all.
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DaveF

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Motivation (My Story)

I had my movie room (technically a "media room") built in late 2016. It's a 7.2.4 system: 7 surrounds, 2 subwoofer channels, and 4 ceiling speakers. The space is tight and oddly shaped. It could not accomodate free-standing speakers. So the speakers are in-wall Triad Bronze and Silver. The subwoofers are two Bronze 10" subs in the front (with the LCR speakers) and a 12" Silver subwoofer in the right wall. The sound was never quite right, particularly the bass. I had the installer work with it, without satisfaction.

I've been fussing and fighting and struggling with it for the past four years. I've run Audyssey a dozen or more times. I've contacted Triad directly -- they're a custom installer (CI) only company and don't talk directly with end users. But I made them aware of a bug in their amplifier firmware, and they sent me directly the patch a few months later. I've talked with Triad owners and another seller to get installer information, instructions for the amplifiers, and overviews for the settings (crossover levels, etc). I've spent too many hours struggling with the Triad subwoofer amplifier settings and re-re-running Audyssey trying to get it to sound right.

This year I tried to get to the subwoofer itself, but can't figure out how to access it without tearing up the wall. I spent time adjusting the mount screws. It seemed perhaps they were too tight, fully compressing the isolation gaskets, causing the vibration. That helped but did not eliminate the problem.

Overall, I've improved my bass performance with tweaking the digital amplifier settings, adjusting the mount screws, and running Audyssey. But it was never fully right.

I'd concluded that my installer didn't install 12" subwoofer correctly (and possibly not the 10" subs either). It resonates its wall with certain sub-30 Hz sound. And a pair of 10" subs are great to bolster, but are inadequate per se for digging into the 20 Hz realm in a theater room.

My original installer sold his company to a larger regional customer installer company a few months after completing my room. So I contacted them earlier this year, describing the problem. They said the sub might be blown. They could come out, pull it form the wall, diagnose and replace it. At $200/hr, minimum one hour, and unspecified cost or timeline for a replacement sub.

The sub isn't blown. It's not installed right. Of this I'm certain. Regardless, I'm looking at easily $2000+ to maybe hopefully fix the problem. With a CI company with a poor reputation for dealing with former customers of acquired companies.

Also, there's a pandemic. Having unknown people come into my home was not something I was keen on.

It's been four years. I just wanted my bass fixed. And I was at the point of spending a few thousand dollars to do it.

So I began more seriously looking into just buying a couple of subs, throwing them in the room, and getting on with my life. I wasn't thrilled with the aesthetic impact, so how they would integrate became a priority.

My original idea was to put one or two subs behind the rear seats. I've got dimensions. I've got the subs that will and won't fit. And if you squint at the center left of the photo, you can see a second black outlet plate: that's spare ethernet run to the electronics closet. I borrowed a friend's kit and spent a Saturday terminating the Cat5 cables at both ends. And bought a $15 ethernet-to-RCA connector. I was ready to put subwoofers there. Power. Copper path. Good to go.
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Then I learned about the SoundPath Tri-Band Wireless Audio Adapter. And my options opened up! I could put subwoofer(s) in the front below the screen. The lack of speaker wiring was no longer a hindrance. And there is an outlet in the corner. But SAF began plummeting for this. There would be extension cord(s) snaking along the front wall. Random subwoofer boxes below the screen. And I wasn't thrilled with the aesthetic impact myself. I could make it work, but it wasn't awesome.

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I started playing with SVS Augmented Reality tool on their website. I discovered that the sealed subs would fit alongside the front row seating! These two photos are taking on my iPad Air (2020) running the SVS "View in Your Space" feature available on their subwoofer product pages. The audio purist is probably shuddering at how "wrong" this is. Subs should be on the front soundstage and/or in room corners. But this location 1) has power hidden in the riser behind the seats, 2) space to hide the wireless adapters, and 3) the subs tuck in behind the side tables as if they belong.

And from a purist perspective, my room was had an acoustic analysis performed during design assuming the in-wall subs. And I just tossed that out the window. Ah well.
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And so, I got the SB-3000's downstairs, into the room, and they fit just as the AR tool predicted. I can't overstate how compact these subwoofers are. They're a caged tiger. The minimum box to wrap around a 20Hz and below 13" woofer. This is literally wall-shaking bass in a hide-behind-a-sidetable size.

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A $40 surge protector with six plugs to accomodate the two subs, two audiopaths, and two power recliners.
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Audiopath wireless adapters I'll describe in more detail later. But here they are. Plug-and-play, trivial to use.
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Final comment to drive home how efficient the SB-300 is: My current subwoofer is an SVS PC12-Plus. Here it is in the living room, rearing up behind the couch. It is multiple Standard Cats tall. I couldn't get a photo of the PC-12 and SB-3000 together. But hopefully this will help convey the comparitive size of this sealed subwoofer.
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DaveF

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I feel like Star, as I "dip down" with my new pair of SVS SB-3000 subwoofers installed in the Catfisch Cinema. (except this thing isn't broken as I give it a whirl) :D
 

xx Brian xx

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Congrats on the new subs!! I'm looking forward to hearing how you like the SB subs. I'm really considering going to a sealed sub myself.
 

DaveF

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Here's a condensed preview of what I'll post up top eventually: The SB-3000 is awesome! And the Soundpath is plug-and-play, if you need a wireless connection.

Awesome The Lego Movie GIF by Trolli
 
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JohnRice

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Pretty much SVS madness around here lately.

If I say so myself, I think I get the prize for taking it to the extreme. Extensive, far too detailed feedback to come in its own thread. Stay tuned.
 

DaveF

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I'd like to play with moving them around the room, but I'm not sure that will happen.

Hopefully you and John Dirk can get into the deeper details in your reviews. :)
 
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JohnRice

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I'd like to play with moving them around the room, but I'm not sure that will happen.

Hopefully you and John Dirk can get into the deeper details in your reviews. :)
I won't be moving them around, since I extensively planned and rearranged the room a bit to accommodate what should be the ideal placement of opposing corners. They tested well there, so there they will remain. I plan to go into far too much detail. I'm likely to have some three day weekends through the summer. I love my work schedule, BTW.
 

JohnRice

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Except I got the impression Dave doesn't really want to be an enthusiast, except maybe w/ a spreadsheet or the like perhaps, haha... :laugh:

_Man_
Yeah... RIGHT! LOL!

Dave goes far deeper into the weeds than I'm willing to do. I have my sanity to be concerned with. It's tenuous enough as it is.
 

ManW_TheUncool

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Yeah... RIGHT! LOL!

Dave goes far deeper into the weeds than I'm willing to do. I have my sanity to be concerned with. It's tenuous enough as it is.

Wait... were you thinking Dave Upton instead of Dave F? That sounds like the former, not the latter... well, at least when it comes to this stuff anyway... :D

_Man_
 

KWolfskill

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Looking forward to the in depth impressions and advice. I also have a brand new pair of SVS SB 3000s in Piano Black staring at me and I really need to find the time to get them properly setup.
 

DaveF

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Second post added to give more background than you want on why I chose this subwoofer. I can't do the audio expertise the way a John Dirk or Dave Upton or JohnRice can. But hopefully I can get into some lifestyle aspects that will be of interest and help people make pragmatic choices.
 

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