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The Official "What Speakers or Subwoofer Should I Buy" Assistance Thread (1 Viewer)

Portrunner

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Hi, first post, advice appreciated! I have Klipsch Rp-806FA’s, RP-504C, RP-500SA’s and Energy XL-S10 speakers. Sub is 23 years old. Current receiver is a Denon X3100W. Will upgrade receiver next year to most likely Yamaha RX-A6A. Looking for tighter bass and louder mains. Goal is to make “Everybody Wants Some!!” type songs “drums” sound amazing. What will benefit my current system the most? Amp or new subwoofer? If sub which one? I do end up messing with subwoofer volume a lot. SVS app sounds great but keep reading Rythmik and others are better for the money. Whatever I don’t get will be purchased eventually after new receiver. Thanks!


What are you looking for (Speakers, Subwoofer or Both)? Subwoofer or amp

Primary Use: 70% Music, 30% TV & Movies

Desired Configuration: 7.1?

Room Size: 19X42

Is the room open to other areas of your home: yes, open concept living room, dining room and kitchen. Tile floors, concrete slab.

Do you already have an AV receiver or amplifier? Yes

What's your budget (low to high): $1500
 

JohnRice

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Hi, first post, advice appreciated! I have Klipsch Rp-806FA’s, RP-504C, RP-500SA’s and Energy XL-S10 speakers. Sub is 23 years old. Current receiver is a Denon X3100W. Will upgrade receiver next year to most likely Yamaha RX-A6A. Looking for tighter bass and louder mains. Goal is to make “Everybody Wants Some!!” type songs “drums” sound amazing. What will benefit my current system the most? Amp or new subwoofer? If sub which one? I do end up messing with subwoofer volume a lot. SVS app sounds great but keep reading Rythmik and others are better for the money. Whatever I don’t get will be purchased eventually after new receiver. Thanks!


What are you looking for (Speakers, Subwoofer or Both)? Subwoofer or amp

Primary Use: 70% Music, 30% TV & Movies

Desired Configuration: 7.1?

Room Size: 19X42

Is the room open to other areas of your home: yes, open concept living room, dining room and kitchen. Tile floors, concrete slab.

Do you already have an AV receiver or amplifier? Yes

What's your budget (low to high): $1500
Well, "louder" mains could mean a lot of things. And I'm guessing you mean you have RP-8060FA, not 806.

Those speakers are quite efficient, so they don't need much power. Louder could just be a matter of increasing the trim level of the main speakers.

That sub isn't even remotely sufficient for the rest of your setup. That with the size of the room means you need to spend some serious $ on sub(s), and I would recommend two. Which ones is the difficult decision. I would get sealed ones, since you'll be driving it hard and that will control the sub better at its limits. You could easily need to spend $2-3K to really get what you need.
 

Portrunner

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Well, "louder" mains could mean a lot of things. And I'm guessing you mean you have RP-8060FA, not 806.

Those speakers are quite efficient, so they don't need much power. Louder could just be a matter of increasing the trim level of the main speakers.

That sub isn't even remotely sufficient for the rest of your setup. That with the size of the room means you need to spend some serious $ on sub(s), and I would recommend two. Which ones is the difficult decision. I would get sealed ones, since you'll be driving it hard and that will control the sub better at its limits. You could easily need to spend $2-3K to really get what you need.
Thank you for your input. I did not realize that my subwoofer was that bad. Unfortunately, I do have a budget. I could probably go up to $2k for two but that would leave me with at this point two SB3000's or F12's. I also keep reading about overheating subs and that music is hard on the sub amp. I am older but sometimes listen to music loudly for an hour or two. Hard Rock and Metal along with wife's Latin pop are what we listen to the most. Rythmik gets better reviews for music but the amp appears to be half as powerful. Or I could get an SB4000 or F15HP and maybe in a few years get a second one?
 

JohnRice

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Thank you for your input. I did not realize that my subwoofer was that bad. Unfortunately, I do have a budget. I could probably go up to $2k for two but that would leave me with at this point two SB3000's or F12's. I also keep reading about overheating subs and that music is hard on the sub amp. I am older but sometimes listen to music loudly for an hour or two. Hard Rock and Metal along with wife's Latin pop are what we listen to the most. Rythmik gets better reviews for music but the amp appears to be half as powerful. Or I could get an SB4000 or F15HP and maybe in a few years get a second one?
I might have misread your original post. The sub you have is the Energy XL-S10... right?

I actually haven't heard about sub amps overheating, but it's certainly possible. I understand some if not most Rythmik subs use Class H amps, which will generate more heat than the traditional Class D sub amps. I've never confirmed that myself though. I think either of your plans (SVS and Rythmik) is a good approach. Sometimes it's worth it to spread out the cost, such as you suggested with the better subs, in order to better achieve what you want.

There are two members here who recently added dual SB-3000 and SB-4000 to their systems and have posted reviews in the speaker section. I recently added dual SB-16s, but have been a lazy bum while I enjoy them and haven't posted my review yet. Here's my capsule review. "They're freaking bullet proof." All of us are quite happy with our choice. Of course, Rythmik adds the benefit of servo control, but the SVS have built-in EQ, if you have the ability (calibrated mic, REW and computer) to take advantage of it.
 

Dave Upton

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Thank you for your input. I did not realize that my subwoofer was that bad. Unfortunately, I do have a budget. I could probably go up to $2k for two but that would leave me with at this point two SB3000's or F12's. I also keep reading about overheating subs and that music is hard on the sub amp. I am older but sometimes listen to music loudly for an hour or two. Hard Rock and Metal along with wife's Latin pop are what we listen to the most. Rythmik gets better reviews for music but the amp appears to be half as powerful. Or I could get an SB4000 or F15HP and maybe in a few years get a second one?
Another good option at your budget can stretch to $2K is to get two of these: https://www.hsuresearch.com/products/uls-15mk2.html

I think it's important to get a 15" driver if your goal is to reproduce bass at reference level.
 

Portrunner

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I might have misread your original post. The sub you have is the Energy XL-S10... right?

I actually haven't heard about sub amps overheating, but it's certainly possible. I understand some if not most Rythmik subs use Class H amps, which will generate more heat than the traditional Class D sub amps. I've never confirmed that myself though. I think either of your plans (SVS and Rythmik) is a good approach. Sometimes it's worth it to spread out the cost, such as you suggested with the better subs, in order to better achieve what you want.

There are two members here who recently added dual SB-3000 and SB-4000 to their systems and have posted reviews in the speaker section. I recently added dual SB-16s, but have been a lazy bum while I enjoy them and haven't posted my review yet. Here's my capsule review. "They're freaking bullet proof." All of us are quite happy with our choice. Of course, Rythmik adds the benefit of servo control, but the SVS have built-in EQ, if you have the ability (calibrated mic, REW and computer) to take advantage of it.
I looked at the researched the HSU speaker and while I think it is a great value I think I would like to stick with Rythmik or SVS. I emailed both companies and their recommendations were the FV15HP or PB4000 or PC4000 due to my room size. SVS says that their ported subs sound even better for music as they output more. The SVS ported speakers are too big and I am worried that the Ryhmik while is of ok size is "Ideal for Home Theater" as per their website. I am mainly into music although I do intend to watch movies every now and then. I am not looking for earth shattering movie bass but am looking for better I guess mid bass punch. I will probably be moving in a couple years so am looking for something that is flexible. Do you think that one SB16-Ultra will be a good upgrade from the ported 10 that I currently have considering my goals? I would like to purchase it before the price increase and realize that I can return it, but don't want to cause SVS to lose money if the SB16 is obviously a wrong choice for me.
 

Dave Upton

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The SB16-Ultra is a great sub. It's not small however.

If you want music reproduction, dual subs is a far better solution for even frequency response.
 

ManW_TheUncool

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Sounds like dual Hsu ULS-15 Mk2 would be the way to go, if he can stretch the budget some. Might be wishing I went w/ one myself now instead of the VTF-3 Mk5 (as I'm much more space constrained these days)...

_Man_
 

Portrunner

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The SB16-Ultra is a great sub. It's not small however.

If you want music reproduction, dual subs is a far better solution for even frequency response.
I can afford the dual ULS-15-Mk2's but worry about having to go fiddle behind not only one but two speakers every time I decide do go from Music to Movies. I also read a review about possibly hurting the speaker if I use EQ1 for too long. If I buy the HSU's is the extended warranty recommended? I am looking for something that is almost idiot proof if that is possible. SVS has a great warranty and I do follow the Audiophile Happy Hours when I can. I like how they communicate with the community and would hope that the app simplifies my life. The SB16 while not small is still smaller than all the ported models that the manufacturers recommended.
 

Dave Upton

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I can afford the dual ULS-15-Mk2's but worry about having to go fiddle behind not only one but two speakers every time I decide do go from Music to Movies. I also read a review about possibly hurting the speaker if I use EQ1 for too long. If I buy the HSU's is the extended warranty recommended? I am looking for something that is almost idiot proof if that is possible. SVS has a great warranty and I do follow the Audiophile Happy Hours when I can. I like how they communicate with the community and would hope that the app simplifies my life. The SB16 while not small is still smaller than all the ported models that the manufacturers recommended.
You should never need to touch the subs again once you've got them dialed in. You'll spend a good afternoon doing that, but once you're done - you're done. If you do switch anything for movies, it's just on your receiver/processor - usually a minor mode adjustment and that's tied to the input.

This is done by changing the settings for your Music inputs vs Movie (Blu-ray player or streamer) inputs.
 

Portrunner

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You should never need to touch the subs again once you've got them dialed in. You'll spend a good afternoon doing that, but once you're done - you're done. If you do switch anything for movies, it's just on your receiver/processor - usually a minor mode adjustment and that's tied to the input.

This is done by changing the settings for your Music inputs vs Movie (Blu-ray player or streamer) inputs.
Thank you for all the information and putting up with Newbie questions. I spoke with a guy from Hsu who was very nice and answered all my questions. I will purchase a set of Hsu subs!
 
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JohnRice

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Thank you for all the information and putting up with Newbie questions. I spoke with a guy from Hsu who was very nice and answered all my questions. I will purchase a set of Hsu subs!
You can't go wrong with any of the 3-4 you were considering. I'm glad you went dual. I finally did that a few months ago, with @Dave Upton 's encouraging, and I don't regret one bit. Fortunately, my HT room is ideal for it and now, for the first time, bass is truly enveloping and completely non-directional.

Play around with the tuning of the subs to see what you like. Once you get them reasonably set up.
 

theJman

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I looked at the researched the HSU speaker and while I think it is a great value I think I would like to stick with Rythmik or SVS. I emailed both companies and their recommendations were the FV15HP or PB4000 or PC4000 due to my room size. SVS says that their ported subs sound even better for music as they output more. The SVS ported speakers are too big and I am worried that the Ryhmik while is of ok size is "Ideal for Home Theater" as per their website.
There's a reason why the recommendations from both companies are for ported subwoofers, your room is too large for small sealed subs. Porting adds additional output, something that will be very beneficial in your case.

Rythmik make some of the most highly regarded subwoofers available because of their detail and sound quality (their website is rather primitive but the products are anything but). I've heard the FV15HP in person and it will absolutely do music.

I can afford the dual ULS-15-Mk2's but worry about having to go fiddle behind not only one but two speakers every time I decide do go from Music to Movies.

You should never need to touch the subs again once you've got them dialed in. You'll spend a good afternoon doing that, but once you're done - you're done. If you do switch anything for movies, it's just on your receiver/processor - usually a minor mode adjustment and that's tied to the input.

This is done by changing the settings for your Music inputs vs Movie (Blu-ray player or streamer) inputs.
+1

What Dave said is spot on, properly tuned is properly tuned. The configuration on the sub should not need to change because the material did.
 

JohnRice

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I just want to toss in a couple personal observations regarding subs. I think there are certain conventions that have been repeated, but there is often more to consider. In a living space which is also used for movies, there are other considerations to be made. It isn't necessarily desirable to have huge subs to get the "needed" output. I've been living with a "too small" SB2000 in my living room for almost three years, and I have been nothing but constantly pleased, even surprised with its performance. I'm much happier with it than I ever expected. Sure, I'd like to add a second one for better distribution, but for use in a living space, it's never fallen short. Maybe a more in-depth discussion on the topic is in order.
 

Dave Upton

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I just want to toss in a couple personal observations regarding subs. I think there are certain conventions that have been repeated, but there is often more to consider. In a living space which is also used for movies, there are other considerations to be made. It isn't necessarily desirable to have huge subs to get the "needed" output. I've been living with a "too small" SB2000 in my living room for almost three years, and I have been nothing but constantly pleased, even surprised with its performance. I'm much happier with it than I ever expected. Sure, I'd like to add a second one for better distribution, but for use in a living space, it's never fallen short. Maybe a more in-depth discussion on the topic is in order.
Great point. I think it's all going to come down the listening level, and how low you want to go.

If you want reference level playback of content below 20Hz, physics dictates the larger subs and often multiples. If it's just watching at more moderate volumes and you're fine with 25Hz rolloff, you can make do with a much smaller sub.
 

JohnRice

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Great point. I think it's all going to come down the listening level, and how low you want to go.

If you want reference level playback of content below 20Hz, physics dictates the larger subs and often multiples. If it's just watching at more moderate volumes and you're fine with 25Hz rolloff, you can make do with a much smaller sub.
Thanks Dave. I just often see people coming in here asking for advice on living space systems being told that anything that can't produce reference levels and extension below 20Hz is unacceptable. The SB-2000 I got a few years ago is my first ever sealed sub, and it has completely opened my eyes. Its performance is much better than I ever expected, it's quite small, and it never sounds stressed. If it's over driven, it just stops getting louder, but it doesn't have the problems a ported sub can have in that situation.
 

gameover

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Hello...first post and wondering if I could set some advice on what equipment to buy for a decent sounding setup in my home family room. I know this isn't an ideal room for a home theater, but I just want something decent that allows me to watch and hear movies/TV. Anyway, I appreciate any help in advance, here goes...

What are you looking for (Speakers, Subwoofer or Both)? Both

Primary Use: 10% Music, 80% TV & Movies, 10% xbox

Desired Configuration: 5.1 or whatever makes sense

Room Size: 19x23, but extends into the kitchen so 19x31 including that

Is the room open to other areas of your home: Great room so very open to kitchen and entry, plus high ceilings to second floor

Do you already have an AV receiver or amplifier? No

What's your budget (low to high): $1500-2500

Any special requirements (Wife Acceptance)? Currently have 2 existing in-wall speakers (10"x14") from previous owner, presumable for surrounds. Attached is a drawing of what the room looks like.
 

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DFurr

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For those who say "go dual subs" you are absolutely correct. No question they make the difference is the presentation. One of the best things about our screening room is the dual 18 inch JBL subs. I like to feel the "thuds" in my chest. I might have to straighten up the pictures on the walls in the living room once a month but it's worth the effort, at least for me.
 

gameover

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Hello...first post and wondering if I could set some advice on what equipment to buy for a decent sounding setup in my home family room. I know this isn't an ideal room for a home theater, but I just want something decent that allows me to watch and hear movies/TV. Anyway, I appreciate any help in advance, here goes...

What are you looking for (Speakers, Subwoofer or Both)? Both

Primary Use: 10% Music, 80% TV & Movies, 10% xbox

Desired Configuration: 5.1 or whatever makes sense

Room Size: 19x23, but extends into the kitchen so 19x31 including that

Is the room open to other areas of your home: Great room so very open to kitchen and entry, plus high ceilings to second floor

Do you already have an AV receiver or amplifier? No

What's your budget (low to high): $1500-2500

Any special requirements (Wife Acceptance)? Currently have 2 existing in-wall speakers (10"x14") from previous owner, presumable for surrounds. Attached is a drawing of what the room looks like.
Okay, so based on what I've been reading here (Dave Upton earlier in the thread), this is what I'm thinking:
Receiver - Marantz SR6014 or would I benefit from the 6015?
Speakers - Monoprice THX Front towers and center...I have surrounds from previous owner which are also monoprice
Sub - Hsu VTF-3 Mk5...Hsu rep said this would probably be the best for my space and my use.
Price - Probably b/t 4500 and 5k when all is said and done.
Anyone have any thoughts or suggestions on this setup for my space?
 
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