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Worst subwoofers that money can buy?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Vaughan, Jan 11, 2003.

  1. Vaughan

    Vaughan Agent

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    Hi guys

    These days, in the subwoofer market it is quite hard to get a good price/performance ratio with certain exceptions(SVS,Adire,Hsu come to mind) and there are mid-woofers, as they should be called,ARE A DIME A DOZEN multiplying like bacteria, but there are the heavy weights concerning this division.This topic, is a means to discover the worst subwoofers money can buy in terms of bang for the buck, and in no way is implying that they are rubbish, but just that they are DAMMMMNN!! bad value for the money.My worst value/per dollor performs are in no particuliar order:Martinlogan Descents,Linn 5150,[email protected] mx-5000,Wilson XS and the Krell Master Reference(of course!,$32000)Any suggestion would be most welcome, and pricing of these subs would also help as to validate any assumptions.

    Regards
     
  2. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    Bose bass module. [​IMG] Not even a sub. Waste of money IMO...
     
  3. MikeH1

    MikeH1 Screenwriter

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    My friend had a Sony $200.00 Cdn sub ( no it wasn't the W-40) and it sounded terrible. Sure, there was "bass" but it was of the one noted bloated variety. The worst part is that him and his J6P buddies loved it, except me.
     
  4. TommyL

    TommyL Supporting Actor

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    Nothin Worse than that BOOMY sound of this car that goes up and down my street with some Jensen like sub blairing cheesy tunes through it...Don't they know by now that the 1 note BOOM is NOT cool? BUt it does shake the car...maybe thats the cool part[​IMG]
     
  5. Vaughan

    Vaughan Agent

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    Michael, If you think that's bad, my friend bought a warfdale sub because as it was the cheapest sub there was, little did he know that it had a +-3db of 50 herz with a 6" driver,BOOM,BOOM,BOOM,MYYYYY GODDDD.That was pretty bad.
     
  6. Dan Hine

    Dan Hine Screenwriter

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    Well, you can't buy it separately but the subs that come with RCA's newest HTiB's really are horrible. They look to be some kind of bandpass design and I don't trust anything to be a subwoofer if I can pick it up with my pinky. It weighed MAYBE 7lbs.
     
  7. Dustin B

    Dustin B Producer

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    Wilson WatchDog ($12000), Aerial SW12 ($5000), Revel B15 ($3000) the one above the B15 in the Revel line is even worse for price/performance. Anything in the Rel line (great amp connectivity on the ST series, but not much sub for the money). Canton, B&W, Deftech SuperCube, hell just about every commercial sub :p)
    Mind you my perspective on what makes good price performance in a sub has been skewed by building a couple myself [​IMG] Pretty much everything looks over priced for it's performance after you've completed a DIY sub.
     
  8. Vaughan

    Vaughan Agent

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    Dustin, i am a bit jealous of your knowledge of DIY,as you can practically build subs to outgun any commercial sub, even the B4 supersub(SVS), and i agree with the above mentioned sub, except for one sub that you never mentioned,the frikkin KRELL MASTER REFERENCE, should be called Krell Master Spender, the worst subwoofer to my knowledge, around $32000,i mean, geeez.I think dual SVS ultra's could beat that hunk of junk.
     
  9. John F. Palacio

    John F. Palacio Supporting Actor

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    Is this Vaugh or "his brother" that started this thread?
     
  10. Vaughan

    Vaughan Agent

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    John, it's Vaughan here and not my stupid brother, he won't be that stupid to try meddle with my threads again, i did try to be the most sensible in trying to get my explanation across(In that one thread), just hope that I indeed got my thoughts across, as trolls lurking on this site is childish and irresponsible to say the least.
     
  11. Dan Hine

    Dan Hine Screenwriter

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    I want to add the Martin Logan Decent(sic). I was not impressed with this sub's hz/db/$ ratio.
    I would argue that every "commercial" sub is a bad value. Not everyone can build a sub. I'm not talking about having the desire either. Some people are all thumbs with tools and using them will ACTUALLY make them all thumbs.[​IMG] Others work so much or have so much going on that when it comes time to enjoying their system they just want to enjoy it...not have to slave around building something. I've enjoyed the sound of Mirage subs, Velodyne subs, and even a Boston Acoustic sub or two. If I valued buying locally then those are a pretty good value IMO.
    With that in mind, IMO the BEST value you're going to find in subs is from SVS, Acoustic Visions and Rutledge Audio Design. I've dealt with Tom (SVS), Kyle (AV) and have met Brian in person. They are all great people that do outstanding work with great customer service as well. Pretty much any other sub will fall short in terms of value.
    The best part about the custom guys is that they can build a sub according to what matters most to you. If you value size then they can build you a small sub. If you value actual performance, size be damned, then they'll build you a big bad sub that stomps on anything around.
     
  12. Vaughan

    Vaughan Agent

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    I am very interested in learning the ways of DIY, and only have knowledge(somewhat) of room acoustics and info regarding driver uniformity and sound acoustics and I would like extensive knowledge based in this field, as i could then NO DOUBT build a sub to beats everyones ass.....of course that is a dream.
     
  13. Brett DiMichele

    Brett DiMichele Producer

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    You want to see the worst sub for the money? Just go to
    eBay and look under the consumer electronics "speaker"
    section.. The guy that owns the Aura speaker company is
    auctioning off $172,000.00 custom installed systems that
    he claims will come with all the amps needed and the total
    power figures are like 20Killowatts or something crazy like
    that...
    [​IMG] I'd say 200K constitutes poor dollar/performance ratio..
    *edit* I am of course talking Dollar/Performance.. I am
    sure his subs perform well. But when you get into the
    esoteric level your paying for name, your paying for the
    right to look at your buddy and say "Hey I paid 32 grand
    for my sub woofer and 6 grand for the subwoofer cable and
    another 10 grand for the power cord" and then someone
    comes along with a sub they built themselves for a total
    investment of maybe a grand, maybe 2 grand if it's a real
    crazy DIY job, and completely destroys the 32K sub [​IMG]
    But at the end of the day Mr.RichGuy can kick back and
    lavish in the notion that just his sub, sub cable, power
    cable cost more than my sports car.. [​IMG]
     
  14. Dustin B

    Dustin B Producer

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    Vaughn, getting to the intermediate knowledge level of sub design I have isn't hard. Doesn't take very long either. Just do some reading in the DIY/Advanced section and play with the modelling software. The relationships between things quickly become apparent.
    If you really want to get serious though, start by grabbin a copy of this.
    http://www.partsexpress.com/pe/showd...ID=15363&DID=7
    Then move on to more advanced books from there. Subs aren't the only area DIY can destroy commercial. $300 speaker kits can easily compete with $2k+ commercial speakers. And small increases in kit cost usually result in larger multipliers to commercial equivalents.
     
  15. Vaughan

    Vaughan Agent

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    But isn't it far more complex to build towers or bookshelf speakers as the cabinet would be more critical to influening the higher frequencies and optimizing the mid-bass frequencies?
     
  16. Dustin B

    Dustin B Producer

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    Crossover's are the tricky part with speakers that with subs you don't have to worry about. But people who know what they are doing design the crossovers with speaker kits and usually provide cabinet plans. The baffle width is usually the only critical dimension of a speaker enclosure (the rest can change to almost whatever you want, as long as the drivers still fit and the net volume of the enclosure stays the same).
     
  17. Guy Usher

    Guy Usher Supporting Actor

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    Most people dont have the time or patience and too many are willing to live with whatever they can get, like cable TV it sucks, everybody knows it sucks but they go along paying their bill month after month anyway. Unless the buying habits of the general public change you wont see a change in quality.
    I have the ability for DIY and have it in my head that before I leave this world I will have my state of the art speakers, just dont have time, I guess I had rather eat and keep a roof over my head. The most amazing part is that it is not that expensive to build a speaker system that would put to shame most any comerical loadspeaker, you would think more of the big speaker mfgrs would put out some of these. Parts Express has a great little 2 way kit for 138 bucks a pair and it would only take an hour or so to put it together, I have heard the speaker, maybe I will get off my ass and start something this week.
     
  18. Brett DiMichele

    Brett DiMichele Producer

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    I am glad that DIY exists and I am very grateful at the
    knowledgeable people we have in the DIY section. People
    like Brian Budge, Saurav, Thomas, Gomer and many more.

    After my own 500 watt 12" sealed sub is done (which specs
    out at more than 100Db @ 20Hz not even factoring in room
    gains) then I am progressing into building my own main
    speakers that will compete with the biggest of the big
    boys.

    I plan on researching it to death and I am looking to avoid
    crossover problems by running a single full range driver
    in a horn loaded enclosure that will play down to where the
    sub takes over.

    Coaxial speakers used to be all the rage in hi fi years ago
    there were many good vintage coax's made. But I am going a
    different route.

    I want to run a pair of Manger Bending Wave Transducers in
    Horn Loaded cabinents and from the documentation I have
    read thus far these are some interesting drivers to say the
    least. They are somewhat pricey at nearly $700.00 each
    which means I will tie up close to $1500.00 in just two
    drivers but atleast I won't have to deal with complicated
    crossovers.

    And if I decide not to go that way, perhaps a trasmission
    line would be an interesting project.

    Either way, I am going to use readily available plans, I
    will count on the countless experts to do the figuring for
    me.
     
  19. Guy Usher

    Guy Usher Supporting Actor

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    Computers help, I think the math is the hardest part to speaker building. I used to subscribe to Speaker Builder mag, dont know why I stopped getting it, there are no shortage of great plans where the math has already been done for you. There are great kits where all you need is a screw driver for that matter. Getting my mind right for this project. . .
     
  20. Brett DiMichele

    Brett DiMichele Producer

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    All of the designs I am interested in are allready figured
    out by the pro's.

    I received some flame emails from some dimwitt in california
    who found my website either while being a troll here or
    from AudioReview and he decided to flame every piece of
    equipment I own.

    Well I flat out told him when I built my own speakers I
    would make sure nothing under 20K would touch them. He
    again flamed me saying it wasn't possible etc.

    The laugh is on that fool because he doesn't know what he
    claims to know. His suggestion to me was to buy Paradigm
    speakers.. LOL Asif Paradigm is high end...

    Very laughable indeed.

    I should add there are many vintage speakers one could
    purchase and restore that can and will easily outgun many
    of the exotic high end offerings today. Tom Brenan knows
    this first hand.. There are so many vintage speakers out
    there that no company has been able to "improve upon" much
    in the past 2+ decades.
     

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