Help, subwoofer making a popping noise

Hey people:

I was playing a 20hz wav sound file which was looping on win media player on my SB12+, mainly just to see if the sub has useable output at 20hz, as it was stated +/-3 db at 22hz.

I currently have gain at 11 oclock, sub -5db, room eq to Medium (though in a small room, i set Med because sub is not in a corner) and as soon as I play the 20hz tune at -15db on my onkyo 705 the subwoofer makes a popping noise, kind of like a big raspberry, when i took off the grill the driver was popping in and out wildly.

Also after the popping, the sub suddenly goes dead then reactivates, at which point I hurriedly turn down the volume, -16db is fine, the extra little 1 db makes the sub cut out.

What is happening? Did I do any damage with my little testing?


Distinguished Member
There's a chance that it's bottoming, don't do it again :nono: :D

There is a protection circuit on the SVS', but my understanding was that it backs off the drive as opposed to cutting the sub out :confused:

Whatever, if things seem ok, it's doubtful you've done any damage.

I suspect you need to turn the sub gain down a bit, although test tones do put a major strain on a sub, especially that low.
Hey thanks, I think it cuts off then comes on suddenly at a lower level of sound, it does this very fast though. But yeah, as you said that's gonna be the protection circuit.

So I bottomed out my sub lol. Well i suppose most people have at least once? in the spirit of trying to push the new toy as far as possible.

I think it's the test tone itself, it's about a 8 sec 20hz loop, the sub only bottoms out about 3/4 secs in. so it's not immediate. I've had music at -10db before and that was fine.

But I've googled "bottoming out sub". in general that's a bad thing to happen, but my sub still seems to work fine. too curious i guess:(

good thing the sub has protection circuit then

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