can you mix and match subs; setting up different driver sizes?

Discussion in 'Subwoofers' started by True Romance, Feb 21, 2013.

  1. True Romance

    True Romance
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    Guys this may have been asked before but can you mix and match subs?

    Say you have two different subs with different power ratings/spec/size/etc could you use these as a pair or would the subs need to be pretty similar?

    Cheers,
    TR.

    EDIT. Right I now have two subs but don't really know where to start with setting them up using my Onkyo 818 and XT32. As we know the 818 will only eq one sub and treats the two subs as one. So what db do I set the sub's to? Any advice would be grateful received.
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2013
  2. kbfern

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    They are better matched Neil but you can obviously mix them up a bit if you want. I did ask a few weeks ago regards putting a sealed MK sub with my ported SVS and that was not seen as a good move as sealed and ported have different attributes.

    Are you looking at getting another sub to go with your VX850 if so I would stick with another MK, I have seen the V1250's going for £300 is that the sort of sub you are thinking about. Are you looking for louder or lower than The 850 and what sort of budget you throwing at it.
     
  3. kbfern

    kbfern
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    With the 818 it will handle 2 subs but eq's them the same so further tweaks may be needed to get them in balance if they were not the same sub.
     
  4. True Romance

    True Romance
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    Hi Keith, as you know I'm looking for some small sat speakers and may end end up buying a 5.1 system so was just seeing if I could make use of another sub.

    Anyway any update on the sub off Rob your going to demo?
     
  5. kbfern

    kbfern
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    Buying a 5.1 system to use with the current MK's by using the sub and a pair of speakers for surrounds? what will you do with the rest. Will the new 5.1 be MK or a different brand.

    Regards the sub from Rob not heard anything yet although he did say it would be 2-3 weeks before he contacted me which would put it around next week maybe.
     
  6. MI55ION

    MI55ION
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    In a perfect world both subs should be equal but really IMO it depends.

    Few rooms are acoustically perfect and each have their own issues to some extent. In my small room for instance, I'm limited by sub placement and size constraints. My primary sub an SVS PC Ultra is therefore limited to how well it can perform due to these constraints. REW indicates a massive peak in one area and even worse a massive null in another. Whilst EQ brought the peak to a good level it could do nothing for the null. Introducing a smaller sealed and less capable but decent sub in another corner of the room along with careful setup not only eliminated the peak but significantly helped with the room null. The response still isn't perfect but it's probably as good as I can do in my room without having to introduce more subs. Best of all I no longer need to use any EQ. To better integrate the two subs I had to lose some bottom end by tuning the SVS' ports to sealed configuration but overall it sounds better balanced and certainly worth losing a few hz low down for what I'm getting now. Probably been lucky in that I've managed to get both subs to work together within their strengths to target my specific room issues. Having said that if your room response is pretty good anyway then I wouldn't bother mixing subs although I guess if you're getting the sub anyway then you have nothing to lose by experimenting.
     
  7. True Romance

    True Romance
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    Just to follow on a quick question, if you had two low/middle identical range subs would they sound/perform any better than one?
     
  8. mojogoes

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    All the more reason to use two of the very same subs , its have enough taking reading from your room and then using that information to implement / dial in just one sub let alone two of the same subs............it begs the question of how many people are really doing this for its full potential in the first place.

    As we know its all about balance so if using two differing subs was an ok idea then i guess you could say the same for the 3 front speakers :rolleyes: uumm no not really because although you can make adjustments for spl levels and time delays the tonal differences between one driver and another is something you can never tweak for and the can be said for subwoofers! now some at this point may say that low end bass is none directional but thats nothing to do with the bass you are hearing or the two differing types of bass in this case.

    What about punch and slam when you have a ported sub down the left flank and a sealed one down the right is this going make the left side sound like its just running behind even though you've set the phasing of one sub @ 180 and the other one @ 0:rolleyes:

    p.s i'm not say you can't use two different subs of course you can you can use what you want its your house your system but for a best balanced response just like using two subs over one in the first place!! two of the same would be the best way to go imho.
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2013
  9. eastsoutheast

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    Not sure if this helps but I run a PC13 Ultra sitting next to my front left front speaker and a Rel R505 sitting to my right firing across the room (SVS facing me rel across the front of me) and it sounds better with the Rel. The rel is connected via the high level input whereas the SVS is via phono from my processor.

    I have just purchased a second SVS so looking forward to trying 2 SVS (one either side of my front speakers in the corners) subs and the Rel.
     
  10. Member 639844

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    Two subs will always outperform one.
     
  11. MI55ION

    MI55ION
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    Is that speaking from experience or all just theoretical?

    I typed out a long response to address all your points but this rubbish app crashed just before I submitted the post so can't be bothered to go over it all.

    In short my experience suggest the benefits far outweigh any negatives you mention here with improved frequency response, decay time, reduced standing waves and less localisation. No, the same obviously does not apply to speakers where we are dealing with the entire frequency range. The ability to integrate and calibrate two different subs properly depend on individual requirements, experience and aptitude. It isn't for everyone. I agree on your point about using same design, I.e. sealed for both subs (see post above).

    In an ideal world we would all have dedicated purpose built rooms with an unlimited supply of identical subs to push system performance to the max but again, as I said above, very few have the luxury of living in this ideal world. Most are limited by room, space, budget and other constraints and as such are limited, the system performance is only as good as the sum of all its design compromise. We could discuss the theory all day but theres nothing quite like practical experience. In the OP's case or anyone else interested, there's no harm in trying. :)
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2013
  12. mojogoes

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    If my post sounded to be an open and shut case it wasn't meant to be so , no of course you can use any two subs you choose to though i personally would never do so even if my room size is constrained which in it self would suggest that maybe using two smaller subs would be better........and as for having a small/tight budget i know too well the implications of that personally:)
     
  13. True Romance

    True Romance
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    Digging up an old thread. Really want to try running two subs in my room before committing big money on an upgraded sub (s). Currently have a mk vx-850 and was thinking of adding a xxl400 but not sure if this would be a close match to my mk? Could get a mono but that's ported were as the mk is sealed, would this affect thing's. Would be great to drop on another vx-850 but you never see them come up for sale. Anyone recommend a close match for the mk?

    Cheers,
    TR.
     
  14. Member 639844

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    We might have something in stock that will match the mk you have now, I'll have to check. Personally, I would stick with a sealed unit to maintain the integrity of the sound. The Monolith will have more output, but being ported will obviously have a slightly different character.

    EDIT:

    Nothing suitable in stack Im afraid, so from your posted options I would personally probably look at the xls400. Obviously if you do get to the stage were your considering an upgrade, try get a demo first, and ideally a home demo.
     
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2013
  15. KelvinS1965

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    Do you know anyone who could lend you a second sub? I'm going to try adding a second sub to my set up, but initially I only have my spare XLS200 to put with the Monolith. It's just a test to see whether I find it is too hard to set up two subs and whether I feel there is a (measured) improvement using REW, to try to reduce the effect of a null I suffer when using a single sub. Since I'd be mixing sealed and ported it might not sound very well integrated, but it's more about proving if I can 'fill' the null by having a second sub.

    If the outcome is positive, then I'm planing on building two subs, but one will have a 12" driver due to space constraints and the front one will be a 15" one (both the same make and model of driver).

    Of course when I mentioned this mix I got posts telling that I'm wasting my time and I should make space for a second 15" (I can't find a way to fit one in that I'm happy with, so it's not going to happen). However, the other option of just making two identical 12" seems to be ignored, probably because it's not the 'hard core' option. :D There is a wealth of knowledge on the subs forum, but can be a bit extreme at times. :D
     
  16. True Romance

    True Romance
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    Thanks Dan, did already ask Rob if he had anything knocking around ;)
     
  17. True Romance

    True Romance
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    Hi Kelvin, yes basically I want to do the same. Just try two subs and see how easy it would be to set up and how much difference it would make to the sound. Was thinking of a BK sub to test with as I could always sell it on if it didn't work out.
     
  18. kbfern

    kbfern
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    I know of a MX350 (bought from Gecko last year it's got the odd mark on it) that you could get for a very good price Neil if interested? that would be the best solution IMV.
     
  19. Ideal AV

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    their are a pair of mint 350`s in the classifieds Neil :smashin:
     
  20. True Romance

    True Romance
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    Bit rich for my blood at the moment Al :(
     
  21. True Romance

    True Romance
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    OK Keith you talked me into it ;) Will now be able to tell what difference two subs will make.

    Just need to figure out how to run XT32 with my 818 using two subs? Any ideas or the best way to do this? With one sub I set the XT32 level at 80db so for two subs would you set them both to 40db?

    Also correct me if I'm wrong but the Onkyo 818 does have two sub outputs right?

    Let the fun and games begin :)
     
  22. KelvinS1965

    KelvinS1965
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    The 818 has two sub outputs (though they are just split inside the 818, so no separate EQ of course).

    You could set each individual sub up 6dB less (not 40dB as sound is a logarithmic scale) so that together you get your 80dB reading. It depends on how far they are from your MPL (mine will be different distances which causes other issues) but if equal distances then hopefully it will be more straight forward than what I'm planning. :rolleyes:
     
  23. kbfern

    kbfern
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    I have not set up twin subs before myself but I think you will set them both at 70db and go from there. The 818 does have two outputs but they are linked internally as one. So really 2 subs of the same make and model are eq'd together but two different subs is more complicated and may have to be done manually rather than with XT32.

    You could try running XT32 first with them both at 70db and see what it sounds like but I doubt you will get the best results that way. I hope you can get some more input from others more experienced with setting up 2 subs. I think to do it properly you will need a laptop, mic and rew and a lot of patience.:D
     
  24. True Romance

    True Romance
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    Thanks Kelvin and yes there lies the next issue....where to place them :( Will have a play over the weekend and try and find the sweat spot. My current sub is next to my may seating position and was thinking of leaving that be and putting the second under the screen in either corner, or failing that both subs under the screen, one in each corner?
     
  25. True Romance

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    Dame I have none of those :eek:
     
  26. KelvinS1965

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    If you get REW downloaded, then there is a room simulator (provided your room isn't a strange shape). It seems pretty accurate from the testing I've done with it and it's easier to 'move' the subs around (and try all the different places, even ones that might not be practical depending on furniture layout, etc).

    Basically I think that you'll need to set the two subs up manually first so that they both produce the same SPL at your MPL, then set the amp's sub level to give you the 80dB during Audyssey set up. Hopefully then Audyssey will set them up as if it is a single sub...it's not ideal, but may well give acceptable results (people used to manage this before Audyssey after all ;)).
     
  27. True Romance

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    Kelvin what you doing the weekend :D
     
  28. m4ccam

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    When I run Audyssey it brings up a spl metre on screen and asks to set each of the subs to 75db then after its done all the positions it says for dual subs to knock them both down by 4.5db.
     
  29. KelvinS1965

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    [Deep breath] Finishing putting up the new wardrobes, wiring in the lighting for the same, moving/replacing a radiator, refitting and painting skirting board, replace floorboards from moving radiator, fit new ceiling light, prepare walls, etc for decoration, dig over and clear the last border in the back garden, treat the lawn and trim some bushes (weather permitting). I might get to watch a film if I'm lucky.

    Why, what are you up? ;):D
     
  30. True Romance

    True Romance
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    Don't know about watching a film think you need to get UKTV on and catch up on "ground force" and "DIY with Tommy Walsh" :D
     

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