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How do you demo a sub?

Discussion in 'Subwoofers' started by fastedd, Mar 27, 2003.

  1. fastedd

    fastedd
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    I'm off to demo a load of subs Friday afternoon with a completely open mind and no [conscious] preference whatsoever. Price ranging from £200 - £900.

    Question is, how do you tell a good sub from bad? Do you turn off all the other speakers and listen to the sub on its own etc. Are there common tones or nuances that highlights problems? Any tricks or tips would be appreciated.

    The shop is very easy going and I can home trial the finalists before buying so it needn't be a quick decision.

    I'm not going to ask for advice on which sub to buy as there is a wealth of info already posted on this, and I don't want to referee a Velodyne Vs Rel contest :D :p

    thanks
    Ed
     
  2. Flimber

    Flimber
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    Ideally, you do it in your own listening room.

    Mike.
     
  3. deckard

    deckard
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    Ed

    Do not listen to the sub my itself, after all, that is not how you listen to it at home.

    Mike's point is very valid, it would be ideal to listen to the sub at home as room acoustics make a great input to the sound. This holds true for any kit really.

    If you get a home trial, dig out some CDs & DVDs that you are very familiar with, partic ones with a strong bass element. Sit down have a listen, if you like it then that's it! Just make sure you turn the sub down to a point where you can barely hear it, then turn it down just a smidgen more.

    Cheers
     
  4. DaveP

    DaveP
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    Surely you are then at the point where you can't hear it at all!

    Or are you 'avin a larf?

    DaveP
     
  5. nathan_silly

    nathan_silly
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    For AV I like my sub loud and set to 80hz, but for music- ~45hz and much lower volume.
     
  6. deckard

    deckard
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    I take your point Dave, but a well integrated sub should not be audible per se, it's prescence should be missed when you switch it off though.

    As with all things though it's horses for courses and if you like to crank it up then be my guest, my method leads to a more balanced sound in my view, better for music. Trust me, if you do it the way I've suggested, you'll still notice when the sub's not on, but it won't overtly draw attention to itself.
     
  7. Chivalry

    Chivalry
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    ive never heard a system with a sub in yet... so im abit unsure what to look for myself :0) still counting the minutes till my VX10 arrives though.. got all my films lined up im gonna try with it,, lol.. woulda been nice to hear a system for some comparison though... so i knew what to listen for and how to set up right.. :0)
    lol.. i see your local to me deckard.. get u fave films out! ill bring the beer!! :clap: lol jk :0)
     
  8. fastedd

    fastedd
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    Thanks for the replys, I shall have a listen and work my way up the price range until i can't hear the sub anymore :D

    I agree with deckard, I have a DLS sub in the car and can only tell it was working by turning it off (or up :) ) I won't be using the sub for music (well no plans yet but I may have a go to see what its like) as I'm more than happy with music using my MF3 amp and Monitor Audio S6 floorstanders...in fact I even have the speakers bunged to tighten up the bass. That and the fact I don't really want to mess with high and low inputs ( I think only the Rels do this anyway?? ) as I don't use the AV amp for music.

    Nope the sub is for all those glorious feel the crump as the bomb goes off moments :D and to generally improve the movie experience (and I can also protect my speakers from all the 80hz and below stuff, sort of worried I'll turn a cone inside out sometimes :rolleyes: )

    Oh well kid in a sweetshop mode this afternoon :clown:
     
  9. Marcus Skidd

    Marcus Skidd
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    Any idea before you go, what makes of sub the shop deals in as we may be able to give you some pointers beforehand
     
  10. fastedd

    fastedd
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    Sorry, no idea yet. The owner told me he had about 15 subs in the shop at the moment ranging from £150 up to about £1500, but he did tell me up front he doesn't have any Rels. He did reel off a list of makes but I've since forgot them as they weren't familiar to me :rolleyes:

    The shop is an independant and has a mixture of stuff from the mid up to the very high end, and has a lot of makes I've never heard of as well as the more usual stuff, so hopefully its the same with the subs and I'll have a varied range to listen to. (I'm forcing myself to never listen to a set of Krell amps or anything that costs £5k+ just in case I like it :eek: )

    Is there any makes to avoid at all costs? :)
     
  11. nathan_silly

    nathan_silly
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    Avoid....

    Yamaha
    Celestion
    Lower end Paradigms
    Gale
    Wharfdale
    Rel Quake
     
  12. Big Ga

    Big Ga
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    Er.... so what you're saying Nathan is that Velodynes are ok ;-)
     
  13. Ian J

    Ian J
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    What Nathan is saying are that Velodyne is not a make to be avoided, but neither is any other REL sub apart from the Quake, Vibe, M&K, MJ Acoustics, B&W or loads more :)
     
  14. dts_boy

    dts_boy
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    don't be worried if you like a sub you have never heard of and hs not been reviewed, end of the day you will be taking it home and you have to be sure you pick one that YOU will like, not one that everyone on here approves of - i don't mean this in an insulting way btw!
     
  15. deckard

    deckard
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    Well, I'd agree with Nathan's shortlist. The REL ST range is still good along with the Q200/201/400, but the Quake and Q150 are pretty feeble IMHO - and yes, I've heard them.

    Other subs to consider would be Velodyne, Pardigm servo 15 (if you can get a good one), B&W ASW675...there's lots actually.

    Ed, you're making this a bit hard specifiying such a broad price range - most £900 subs will take most , if not all, £200 subs to the cleaners!

    I've just looked at several subs around the £600-700 mark, I'd have a look at the REL Strata III and the B&W ASW675 as they're readily available in the high street.
     
  16. fastedd

    fastedd
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    Well,

    had a good old listen on Friday, and took a couple home, a definitive technology sub (small) and a Mirage OM-200 (Big) :)

    The cheaper subs I could hear rumbling all the time (obviously set too loud) but when an explosion came - just a louder rumble. The more expensive sub like the OM-200 I couldn't tell was on until the big explosion and my ears popped :eek: :)

    However, I thought the benefit of a sub is quite subtle and didn't get as big an improvement as I thought I would and after a good long listen I've decided that at the moment I can live without a sub and I'd get more enjoyment /£ by getting a decent CD player.

    I think a sub is a benefit but its probably the last thing I'll buy, so sorry to have wasted all you peeps time who replied.

    cheers
    Ed
     

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