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Advice on buttshakers / tactile transducers for deaf guy

Discussion in 'Subwoofers' started by RedTomato, Apr 16, 2018.

  1. RedTomato

    RedTomato
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    I bought a nice little 50inch plasma from a guy here on AVforums, and after sorting out a flickering issue, am enjoying it very much. As I'm deaf, I usually watch films with the sound on mute, but I miss the thump thump of big bass audio (don't want to piss off the neighbours) from the cinema.

    I've just found out about buttshakers / tactile transducers, and been doing some reading, but am lost by all the talk of amps, audio filters etc - it's a foreign country to me, as I've never had a need for a music system of any kind. Also, most of the buttshaker reviews seem to date back to 2012 or so, surely newer and better things are around now?

    Could nice people here give me some buying / setting up advice?

    Budget: around £100 to test the waters, maybe more for a good setup.
    TV: Panasonic P50ST60B (also use a Windows 10 mini-ITX box connected to the TV for gaming via Steam.)
    Room: Living room with wooden floor and bay window. Ground floor, couple of feet of space underneath, 1930s semi-detached house. TV is on wall shared with neighbour.
    We watch sitting on a 3-person sofa. Happy to open up sofa for DIY mounting etc.
    Would like subtle vibrations from people talking, bigger thumps from explosions & FX, wooshes etc, and rumbling from games / driving sims etc.

    I dunno how sofa shakers are connected to the TV. Wireless would be more wife-friendly, which is a factor here.
     
  2. noiseboy72

    noiseboy72
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    You will need to spend a bit more than £100, but tactile transducers are great for exactly the reasons you state. We have 2 in the sofa and 1 in each chair, all driven off a 500W amplifier. When the kids were younger, they replaced a sub quite nicely, but now they are teens, we crank the whole thing up for maximum effect!

    You will need either a cheap AV amplifier with a sub woofer output connected to a 150W amplifier - or a gamer system that has all the filtering built in. This: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Buttkicker-Gamer-XBox-360-PS2/dp/B000AOTLP6 will do the job and will link from the headphone output on the TV - or you could get an optical to phone converter and run from the output on the TV.

    Screw the transducer into the sofa structure. Mine are mounted on 18mm planks screwed across the recliner chassis. you will need to do some tuning, but they do give you the kick you are looking for :)
     
  3. RedTomato

    RedTomato
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    Thanks, though that buttkicker you linked to seems to be designed for an office chair not a sofa? Also not a very impressive set of reviews on the Amazon page.

    Amazon throws up some interesting - and much cheaper - options for 'bass shaker' https://www.amazon.co.uk/s/?keywords=bass shaker - any thoughts on these?
     
  4. noiseboy72

    noiseboy72
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    Yep, any of those will work. I have the older versions of the top of the list ones. You will need a filtered amp to drive them. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Stage-Line...coding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=2QCVM0YE12QZ0KC5S0BH This with some sort of cabinet will do the job.

    To get the best effect, you need to couple the kicker to the sofa AND also isolated the sofa from the floor. Mine was easy, it's a recliner and sits on big rubber feet, but a bigger, more solid sofa will be more of an issue.
     
  5. m4rky_m4rk

    m4rky_m4rk
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    I wouldn't go for most of those the list. Too small and weedy.

    This thread maybe of interest to the OP (Aura Bass shakers - not performing as hoped!!!)
    Question - Why Don't My Bass Shakers Reflect My Understanding of Real-World Vibrations? (deaf)

    On here Earthquake sound Quake10b and Buttkickers have been popular. I have the Quake10b running for many years and wouldn't be without it. It is an essential part of my home cinema setup. If you search on here you will find many threads on the topic and some reviews for transducers.

    Here is my, now quite old, expedition into tactile sound with the Quake 10b...:
    Earthquake Sound Q10B tactile sound unit and XJ600R amp

    10b is still current but amp has been updated to XJ700R
    Bass Shaker and Accessories - EarthquakeSound.eu

    Here is an old video by me showing the power of a transducer compared to a powerful sub woofer
    Tactile sound effects - EarthquakeSound Quake 10B


    Here is the 10b again :)
    Quake 10B - My journey into infrasonics

    If you go to the end you will find a list of usernames; so you could look them up to see what they have been saying.

    Also, I had a more general thread on the topic and for a while I kept a list of users and what they have. It maybe that you need something that covers both the infrasonic and the voice end of the scale. I am not sure if you can do that in one unit but good luck anyway.
    Butt shakers. Anyone got advice on these?

    Post 59 links
    Post 94 some members and what they had

    The thread is old but transducers don't change too much!!
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2018
  6. drillo

    drillo
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    M4rky_m4rk is the resident expert AFAIK
    He silently convinced me to buy
    I run a q10b (also have a buttkicker but prefer and use the earthquake)
    Mounted it direct to my couch for more direct impact
    I can’t speak for your situation but the tactile non audible impression for me is great
     
  7. RedTomato

    RedTomato
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    Fantastic many thanks m4rky_m4rk - exactly the kind of info I was looking for, especially the DeafPaul thread. His problem with vibrations not representing sounds properly is exactly the kind of problem I want to avoid. Looks like I'm going to have to sit down and take some serious notes on how he solved it & the various info on your other threads.

    Also seems a visit to Mark's place (mbmapit) or somewhere similar will be on the cards for autumn so that I can test before buying. This is gonna be somewhat costly.

    Thanks - RedTomato

    DeafPaul: "I played with various settings (gain and frequency on the amp, turning on and off "extra bass" with the receiver but I still feel that they do not come anywhere near representing what vibrations/sounds feel like to me as a individual who has never heard in his life. I rely on vibrations. I feel them when a gunshot goes off. When somebody screams. When a motorcycle goes by. At the dragstrip. Firecrackers. You get the idea.

    During movies, the shakers don't make the same vibrations. Not even close. I had my hearing girlfriend help yesterday evening to confirm that 1) They aren't making vibrations that reflect what things hear like to hearing people. 2) That the shakers aren't even correctly reflecting the sounds that the TV is making.

    Why is this such a daunting task. When somebody shoots an AK-47 machine gun, I expect my shakers to go "pop, pop, pop, pop!" Not to go "hummmmmmmm". When a car explodes during a MadMax chase scene, I expect for there to be a distinct explosion vibration felt through the humming (car motor sounds I assume). But there's barely a change in the vibrations when something explodes. Then when there are things that aren't loud enough to cause reasonably felt vibrations happening on the TV, the shakers vibrate a bit. Annoying. Maddening."
     
  8. m4rky_m4rk

    m4rky_m4rk
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    I think some of the inconsistencies observed will be down to the sound tracks and the editing. At that end of the frequency scale the sound editing can be quite hit and miss. For your trip I would plan your review material carefully with a some research. In one of my posts I used to keep a list of movies and scenes that are good for testing transducers.

    Other problems can come from transducers not up to the job expected of them or poorly set up.

    I never saw that @DeafPaul thread until recently when looking for links for you. Its a pity because there is/was quite of lot knowledgeable users on here that could have helped. Maybe its worth resurrecting the thread and or PM'ing him to alert him to your interest and start a new discussion.
     

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