What is the SVS SB-2000 Pro?
The SVS SB-2000 Pro is the latest mid-range model from the company, and represents a redesign of its most popular sealed subwoofer. It forms part of the new 2000 Pro Series that also includes the ported PB-2000 Pro and the cylindrical PC-2000 Pro – with the Pro suffix differentiating the new line-up from the existing 2000 Series.
The all-new 2000 Pro Series subwoofers feature technology filtered down from the flagship 16-Ultra Series, along with a newly-designed 12in high-excursion woofer, 550W of Sledge digital amplification, and the Intelligent Control Interface. The 2000 Pro Series also includes SVS’s Bluetooth remote app, making it the entry-point for this particular feature.
As at the time of writing (February 2020), the SB-2000 Pro is available in three finishes: premium black ash (£899), piano gloss black (£999) or gloss white (£999). However, the latter option has to be specially ordered and isn’t available if you choose the PB-2000 Pro or PC-2000 Pro. So how does this new 2000 Pro Series compare to it’s illustrious forerunner? Let’s find out…
The SVS SB-2000 Pro uses the classic sealed subwoofer design, and is essentially a black cube with a big 12-inch driver dominating the front baffle. What’s surprising is how SVS has managed to cram that driver, along with the digital amplification and electronics, into an acoustically inert and compact cabinet that’s only 15 inches cubed. However, it’s great news if you want deep bass from a limited footprint.
The SB-2000 Pro also weighs a sensible 17.5kg, so you can easily move and position it without breaking your back. However, it sports SVS’s usual excellent build quality, with a robust MDF construction, and iso-elastomer feet. The SB-2000 Pro uses a non-resonant extra-thick ABS fabric mesh grille, which is a good thing because I’ve never been a fan of the steel mesh grille used on models like the SB-3000.
Connections and Control
The SVS SB-2000 Pro has a rather minimalist rear panel with a fairly basic selection of connections. These include a stereo/LFE phono input and stereo phono output, along with a 12V trigger and a connection for SVS’s SoundPath adapter for wireless subwoofer placement. There’s also an auto/on feature that allows you to choose between the sub always being on or powering up when it receives a signal.
One of the reasons the rear panel appears so uncluttered is because the SB-2000 Pro uses what SVS rather euphemistically refers to as the Intelligent Control Interface (ICI). This is essentially a multi-function control panel that eschews the normal knobs for a series of buttons. These provide access to volume, phase and low-pass filters, with the ICI delivering feedback using a series of multifunction LED lights.
The 2000 Pro Series is the entry point for SVS’s Bluetooth remote app
While the ICI might look cool from a design perspective, it really isn’t the most intuitive way of setting up and controlling a subwoofer. However, that’s largely moot because the chances are you’ll never actually touch it. And the reason for this is the inclusion of SVS’s Bluetooth remote app. It’s available for iOS, Android and Amazon operating systems, and provides a highly effective method of setting up and controlling the SB-2000 Pro.
You can use the app to change the volume, choose preset sound modes, make crossover and polarity adjustments, select room gain compensation, and access the three-band parametric EQ. The beauty of the app is it allows you to set-up and control the SB-2000 Pro from the sweet spot, even when the sub is out of sight, while the bidirectional feedback shows your changes in real time. It’s a great feature, and it’s good to see SVS employing it further down the range.
Features and Specs
The SVS SB-2000 Pro is based around an all-new 12-inch high-excursion driver. This uses an aluminium vented cone designed to ensure a light, ridged, and neutral radiating surface. This improved stiffness to mass ratio is combined with a proprietary injection moulded extreme-excursion surround designed to ensure fast pistonic motion with better control and accuracy.
There’s a dual ferrite magnet motor assembly that weighs 15lbs, and generates large amounts of magnetics to produce extreme driver excursion without losing control. SVS claims the SB-2000 Pro has a frequency response of 19-240Hz (+/-3dB), although it will start to roll off higher up at around 25Hz. SVS also claims that in small to mid-size rooms you can expect a 2-3Hz boost.
All this is powered by a Sledge Class D amplifier that SVS rates at 550W RMS, with peaks up to 1,500W. This can move large amounts of current thanks to fully discrete MOSFETs, for an improved performance at all drive levels. There’s also a 50MHz Analog Devices Audio DSP with 56-bit filtering and frequency response curves optimised specifically for the SB-2000 Pro.
Setup and Operation
In terms of setup, I positioned the SVS SB-2000 Pro at the front of my dedicated home cinema between the left and centre speakers, in a spot I know is fairly balanced. The sealed cabinet and forward-firing driver make this subwoofer reasonably flexible when it comes to installation.
I didn’t bother with the Intelligent Control Interface (ICI), because I could set up the sub using the remote app, and all while I was comfortably sat in the sweet spot. The app automatically connects with the sub, and the home page allows for easy setting of the subwoofer volume.
It also provides access to a range of options such as Low Pass Filter, Phase, Polarity, Parametric EQ, Room Gain Compensation, Presets and System Settings. For each of these options, there is an additional help page that explains what the feature does and how best to set it.
The SB-2000 Pro is flexible in terms of placement and easy to set up
You can set the sub to On (which is the default), Auto (which means it comes on when there's a signal) or you can use a Trigger as part of a controlled system. You can turn the low pass filter on or off depending on whether you're using the sub with a Low Frequency Effect (LFE) channel.
There's also a Phase control, which allows you to shift the timing of the subwoofer output to align with the main speakers or additional subwoofers, and a Polarity control that allows you to reverse the electrical polarity from positive (default) to negative, if necessary.
Room Gain Compensation adjusts for excessive sound wave density in smaller rooms by reducing the bass at either -6 or -12 dB per octave below a frequency that is adjustable from 25 to 40 Hz. You do this by turning the room gain compensation on or off and adjusting the high pass frequency and the adjustment slope.
There's also a Parametric EQ control with three EQ adjustments that you can use to compensate for peaks and dips in the acoustic signature of the room that couldn't be avoided during initial placement. Each of these EQ adjustments can be set for Frequency between 20 and 200 Hz in single Hz increments, for Boost in a range that goes from +6 to -12 dB, and for Q Factor (bandwidth) from 0.2 to 10.
You can create presets as well, with the option of no preset, a Movie preset for film soundtracks (which introduces a mild bass boost), a Music preset for listening to two-channel music with a subwoofer (which is flat) and a Custom preset if you'd rather create one of your own
The SVS SB-2000 Pro is the perfect example of a sealed subwoofer, offering the design's benefits while also revealing some of its inherent limitations. It certainly has a small footprint, which is sure to please anyone with limited space, and in smaller rooms you’ll get a slight boost in the low-end extension. It also has the speed and agility you expect from a sealed cabinet, resulting in a performance that is surprisingly musical (for want of a better word).
The SB-2000 Pro doesn’t go as deep as its ported stablemates, but it does have a shallower roll-off, allowing it to take full advantage of the inherent room gain in smaller environments. SVS claims the frequency response goes down to 19Hz, which should suffice unless you have a particularly large room, very accommodating neighbours, or just like bass that can rattle your molars.
The SB-2000 Pro is aimed at film and music fans alike, and thanks to its sealed chassis it can certainly handle both when it comes to adding a low frequency foundation. If you do want to use this sub with music, the good news is that it has the speed and agility needed. Selecting the Music preset ensures that the SB-2000 Pro remains both tight and highly articulate.
I recently picked up Ben Watt’s new album Storm Damage and the second track offers a chance to put this sub to the test. The song employs a particularly deep bass note that almost catches you by surprise. However, the SB-2000 Pro handles this sudden dive into the lower registers with remarkable speed and precision, resulting in a crisp delivery.
The film Bohemian Rhapsody culminates in recreation of Queen’s triumphant Live Aid set, and the musical abilities of this subwoofer are once again on show. As Roger Taylor piles into the opening drum beat of Radio Ga Ga, the SVS is right there with a beautifully timed low-end kick that matches each hit precisely. It also digs deeper as the crowd clap in unison, energising the room and putting you in Wembley Stadium on the 13th of July 1985.
The performance has depth, combined with speed and precision
While it’s pleasing to hear such a refined and polished performance, as a film fan I also like to feel some serious infrasonic punch on occasion. The train crash in Super 8 is an all-time classic, with the kind of dynamic and bass-heavy soundtrack that can put any sub through its paces. In fact, the spectacular derailment is an all-out assault on the lowest frequencies that will have you diving for cover as freight cars explode and crash around you.
As each object comes smashing down there’s a massive low frequency thump that gives it a genuine sense of weight and mass. The freight cars pile up into one another, creating a shockwave that spreads out through the room, followed by seismic impacts that shake the ground. A ported sub could undoubtedly go that bit deeper, but there a control and exacting precision to the SB-2000 Pro that gives the entire sequence a terrifying veracity.
A recent and ill-advised trip through all the Terminator movies provided plenty of opportunities to enjoy the depth and nimbleness of the SVS. Terminator Genisys boasts the kind of soundtrack that makes full use of the entire low frequency range. Whether it’s the initial nuclear explosions that accompany Judgement Day, or the opening future war sequence, every explosion or burst from a plasma rifle is delivered with control and power.
Early in the film an ageing Schwarzenegger faces off against his younger self from The Terminator, and it’s a case of an immovable object meeting an unstoppable force. There’s a pleasing thud of metal on metal, and real sense of the sheer weight of these relentless killing machines. The film features extensive use of weapons, and the percussive thump of each round is delivered with exacting precision and depth, while the numerous explosions hit with an energetic slam.
- Excellent bass performance
- Well controlled and responsive
- Flexible setup and control
- Effective remote app
- Great build quality
- Small footprint
- Not as deep as a ported model
- Basic connections
SVS SB-2000 Pro Subwoofer Review
Should I buy one?
The SVS SB-2000 Pro is the perfect example of what the company does best: classy subwoofers that while not the cheapest, deliver an accomplished performance and some cutting-edge tech. It’s easy to see why the 2000 Series is SVS’s most popular subwoofer, offering higher end features at a more affordable price relative to the rest of the company’s range.
Which model you choose will undoubtedly depend on your tastes and circumstances, but those looking for plenty of infrasonic slam might prefer the PB-2000 Pro. Those with limited space and a penchant for low-end heft might go for the PC-2000 Pro instead. However, if you like deep bass from a compact cabinet that’s delivered with control and speed, then the SB-2000 Pro is for you.
It doesn’t go as deep as its stablemates, but it proves capable of a performance that’s both musical and fleet of foot, allowing this subwoofer to handle double duties if necessary. When used to provide the low frequency foundation for a stereo system it can handle the sudden changes with a delivery that is both nimble and tight.
If you want some bigger hits to accompany your favourite blockbuster, it has you covered here as well. The SB-2000 Pro is more than capable of delivering the kind of high-precision impact that LFE fans are looking for. The inclusion of technologies previously only available on SVS’s more expensive subs, such as support for the remote app, help make this sub even more appealing. As a result the SVS SB-2000 Pro is a polished performer, and comes highly recommended.
What are my alternatives?
The sub-£1,000 subwoofer market is crowded to say the least. However there are some cracking options out there, and none more so than the BK Electronics P12-300SB-PR sealed sub with a passive radiator. At £450 it will suit those on a budget, although it’s so good that those with more to spend might just pick up two instead. It’s not pretty and it lacks the finer features, but it delivers bass that’s controlled, responsive and ridiculously deep.
If you’re looking for an alternative sealed choice there’s the REL HT/1205, at £699 it’s still cheaper than the SB-2000 Pro, but benefits from REL's experience and subwoofer expertise. Its low-frequency delivery is superb and, thanks to a 12-inch driver and 500W of Class D amplification, it goes deep but remains controlled. As a result, bass is tight rather than boomy, and the performance has power and agility. However, it doesn't go as quite as low as the SVS.
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