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Benefit of upgrading sub when usually only using moderate volume levels

daveb975

Distinguished Member
I have had a SVS SB12+ sub for quite a few years now and have really enjoyed it.

I live in a place with two direct neighbours, so am normally quite restrained about how loud I listen to movies. Not too quiet, usually about -25 to -20 on my Marantz SR7007 AVR.

If I can be totally sure both neighbours are out, I take it up a fair bit louder and the sub really works well at higher volumes, but this is not that often.

With this in mind, would I get that much of an advantage going to the next level of sub? I really value extension over out and out volume, but I don't want to annoy the neighbours or spend a significant amount on something that my use won't allow me any benefit from.

I'd be looking at something like the Power Sound Audio S1500 or equivalent.

I always used to buy bigger kit with the view that I'd be moving somewhere bigger and detached before long, but with the state of the property market now I doubt I'll be moving anytime soon.
 

chrisgeary

Prominent Member
The SB12+ is fantastic for music. It's got excellent accuracy being a sealed design but it doesn't go very deep. The ported equivalent in box or cylinder form trades accuracy for depth and should satisfy that need.
 

mojogoes

Remembered (1961-2016)
Do not go cylinder especially if you want more of a tactile sub punch!! A second SB12+ should give you more output and depth , I would also look at where your sub is positioned in respect to the mlp as it response may not be at its best...................Dave! what auto eq system are you using has the Marantz got xt32 onboard.
 

daveb975

Distinguished Member
The SB12+ is fantastic for music. It's got excellent accuracy being a sealed design but it doesn't go very deep. The ported equivalent in box or cylinder form trades accuracy for depth and should satisfy that need.

Thanks. I need to try the SB12+ again for music. I could never get it to integrate properly with my floor standers for music even though it seems to be perfect with them for films.

Extra depth is what I am after, just not sure if I'd really notice it without cranking up the volume higher than I should do for the neighbours!
 

daveb975

Distinguished Member
Cyli
Do not go cylinder especially if you want more of a tactile sub punch!! A second SB12+ should give you more output and depth , I would also look at where your sub is positioned in respect to the mlp as it response may not be at its best...................Dave! what auto eq system are you using has the Marantz got xt32 onboard.

Cylinder and second SB12+ are out unfortunately as I am too limited on space for that. I only have limited options where to move the sub to as well, but I will experiment with that.

I think that the SR7007 has the previous Audessey rather than XT32. The Denon X4000 in my other system has XT32 and had more steps to calibrate the sub.

Now I have seen the relatively small size of the S1500, I am wondering if that will make a good difference given my other constraints.
 

chrisgeary

Prominent Member
A ported SVS would be a good place to start, a PB12+ is physically larger than the SB12+ but if you tune it to 16hz, or even lower, you'll definitely hear the lower notes even at low volumes. (obviously depending on positioning, EQ etc). If you can't accomodate the footprint of a PB, try a cylinder instead. The older 20-39s are rare these days but relatively inexpensive and you'll get back what you paid if you want to move it on.
 

mojogoes

Remembered (1961-2016)
The lack of good sub / bass tuning should be looked into before changing the unit you have at present!! Because it could well be this that has brought you to think that you need a sub that gives more output and depth like the PSA-S1500 which it will certainly give you.

Doing so will not make up for a badly tuned / eq'd sub and may actually add to a poorer fr.
 
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KelvinS1965

Distinguished Member
I have had a SVS SB12+ sub for quite a few years now and have really enjoyed it.

I live in a place with two direct neighbours, so am normally quite restrained about how loud I listen to movies. Not too quiet, usually about -25 to -20 on my Marantz SR7007 AVR.

I always used to buy bigger kit with the view that I'd be moving somewhere bigger and detached before long, but with the state of the property market now I doubt I'll be moving anytime soon.

TBH I'd say look elsewhere in your system for upgrades...doesn't sound like you'll get much benefit from a sub you can't really turn up much (-25 is pretty quiet IMHO, my default level for day to day TV listening). It's not like you don't already have a decent sub for the use it gets now.

Maybe look at better LCR speakers perhaps (no idea what you're using now though)? Perhaps if you really want some tactile bass then what about a bass shaker?
 

chrisgeary

Prominent Member
Yes... a bass shaker is an excellent shout. Ideal for environments where you can't turn it up too much. That could totally sort out your desire for more extension enabling you to keep a sub you otherwise enjoy.
 

daveb975

Distinguished Member
Thanks all. I am happy with my main speakers (B&W CM9). I do need to upgrade the centre speaker, but no space for that at the moment.

I really like the idea of a bass shaker. All of the replies here seem to indicate what I was expecting - that my current sub is probably good enough given the volume and placement restraints that I am working with. A bass shaker sounds like a great way of increasing bass performance without being rude to the neighbours!
 

MemX

Prominent Member
Bah, being nice to the neighbours is over-rated - just build a big-enough system that you can't hear them banging the door down ;) :laugh:
 

KelvinS1965

Distinguished Member
Bah, being nice to the neighbours is over-rated - just build a big-enough system that you can't hear them banging the door down ;) :laugh:

I know you're only joking, but there are some ignoramuses who would literally do that. :eek: Nothing worse than having to suffer a noisy neighbour, especially if you work odd hours (or they do). I think the OP should be commended for not being a **** and only cranking it up when he knows they are out. :smashin:
 

MemX

Prominent Member
I know you're only joking, but there are some ignoramuses who would literally do that. :eek: Nothing worse than having to suffer a noisy neighbour, especially if you work odd hours (or they do). I think the OP should be commended for not being a **** and only cranking it up when he knows they are out. :smashin:
I did feel bad when I got a bit carried away watching Tron:Legacy and the neighbours came knocking at gone 11pm :blush: lol

Downstairs now never seems to go out and also has a baby, so louder listening is very rare nowadays! Detached house is needed...

I think that, to a certain extent, watching films and listening to some good dynamic range Classical music is a lot less annoying than banging out Hard House with the bass cranked up into the clip-tastic zone lol
 

daveb975

Distinguished Member
Just to update this thread. I managed to get a good deal on a Buttkicker which should be here next week. For the price I paid I should be able to sell it on at a minimal loss if it doesn't work out.

I am still thinking about a sub upgrade as I am craving something that goes deeper after hearing a few other set-ups recently.

I'd like to stay with a sealed sub for both size and sound reasons, but that seems to make it a lot more expensive! I have been admiring the S1500 and S1800 in the Power Sound Audio thread, but the shipping and currency conversion makes them so expensive over here - the S1500 is under £700 in the US but £1,225 here. I am sure they are worth every penny if you can use them how they were intended, but I'll only be able to do that from time to time.

Ideally, BK would come out with a 15" sealed model with a powerful amp around the £750 mark...
 

Chinstroke

Established Member
What about the Arendal Sub 1? That works out to around £670 at current exchange rates. I asked Jan how it compares to the SB2000 (probably similar to SB12plus) and he said that it would have more output than the SVS at all frequencies.
 

daveb975

Distinguished Member
What about the Arendal Sub 1? That works out to around £670 at current exchange rates. I asked Jan how it compares to the SB2000 (probably similar to SB12plus) and he said that it would have more output than the SVS at all frequencies.

Thanks. I'll take a look at that one. I notice that a SVS SB13 Ultra went for £875 on here recently and that would fit the bill quite nicely.
 

daveb975

Distinguished Member
Just to update... The Buttkicker arrived and I set it up last night. It is the wireless kit, but I have set it up wired as I didn't want yet another 2.4ghz device in the room! The LFE pass-through on my SVS sub made this a lot easier.

First impression was that it was broken! Nothing from it at all even though the sub was booming away. Then I got to the helicopter scene in Skyfall, pushed the volume up high (turning the sub down for the neighbour's sake!) and it started to move very slightly, but not even enough to really notice through the sofa.

Diving into my AVR settings, I noticed that Audessey had set the sub output to -11.5dB. I changed this to 0dB and turning the sub's gain down to compensate and the sofa really started to shake. Fun, but far too much and this was because I had pushed the 'intensity' all the way up when I couldn't get it working to start with!

I spent a while trying to integrate it and I am quite happy with it already, definitely a few moments that felt like I had a bigger sub without being over the top.

I have seen a few reviews of these where people have enjoyed them, but then sold up when they have got a bigger sub that gives that feeling anyway. It sounds quite good fit for someone in my position where I can't upgrade to a better sub, or at least use it effectively.
 

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