PV1 or Sunfire

Discussion in 'Subwoofers' started by table manners, Jan 10, 2008.

  1. table manners

    table manners
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    Hi all.
    I am looking to get my first ever proper subwoofer.
    I am 80% sure i want b&w pv1 but how many of you would pay extra and get a sunfire true subwoofer eq?
    The size/look of the pv1 would be better in my cinema but the eq on the sunfire
    and its massive power does look tempting.
    I have looked at other subs and i am down to these last two.
    Has any one heard both of these units?
    I want the one that would sound the best.(room is 3.5m by 4m)
    One other idea im toying with is to get a pv1 at the front of the cinema room and add another one at the back later on if im not happy with the output from the listening position.
    PS.i do have an ok cinema room with good high frequency acoustics and my current bass sounds very good (just want it a bit lower when things get cranked up).

    Thanks for reading.
     
  2. Andywilliams

    Andywilliams
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    Hi
    Would you not consider anything from svs or bk as these subs will easily outperform the two subs mentioned for the same budget any of the svs ultras would obliterate these and definitely give you what your missing in your cinema.
    If size is a problem the bk xls300 or svs sb12 are worth looking at.
    Avsales has the svs subs and the sunfire so if you wanted to you could have a demo and see hear for yourself before parting with your money.
    Andy.
     
  3. table manners

    table manners
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    Thanks for the info:)
    I will see if i can get down to av sales some time soon.
    I do really like the look of the pv1/sufire and the svs subs look like they belong in the boot of a nova (no offense if you own one) ,I have spent a long time getting my room to look the way i want it.Im getting some new wall mounted rear speakers as well (to get some room space back) and get a better sound stage from them.
    gonzo have you heard the sunfire or the pv1 if so what did you think taking price aside.
    I have set subwoofers up by ear but I dont have experience in fine tuning subwoofers with software so i like the auto set-up feature,as long as it works well.
     
  4. sdb123

    sdb123
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    If you want a good sub with an EQ system, then look at the Velodyne DD range. :)

    It sounds to me as if you're looking for more style than substance....are you sure that your .1 requirements will be met?

    I have spent some time with the PV1 and tbh wasn't taken with it in the slightest. It is a great design and would definitely suit a 'lifestyle' system. You are paying for the designb rather than the performance though.
     
  5. table manners

    table manners
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    I have been given a good price on the pv1 (stock clearance),thats one reason why im swaying that way.Im going to have a listen to a few subs and then see how i feel about the pv1 i don't want to jump into it.
    I would like to get something that compliments my set-up.
    Im thinking if i really need the power of subs like the sunfire in my cinema as my speakers do go low and its not a great sized room.
    If any one local that has the software/laptop to help me get the best from any sub i buy then please let me no,as i dont have the kit to do it and i will be more then happy to help them on their own set-up.
    I have worked as an av installer so im sure i could be of use to any one that helps me.
     
  6. Andywilliams

    Andywilliams
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    Hi
    I have heard the pv1 but not the sunfire the pv1 is a lightweight and with the quality of your system i wouldn't bother the new svs subs (ultras) are real quality and would have a huge impact on your system (for the better) so if you are really intent on purchasing a sub to put a big smile on your face i would get over to avsales and have a listen.
    PS a top notch sub set up properly will fit in to any system regardless so dont worry about integration.
    Hearing is believing.
    Andy.:)
     
  7. Member 96948

    Member 96948
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    If it were a straight choice between the Sunfire and the B&W, I'd take the Sunfire every time.

    However, if I were spending Sunfire money, I'd take a very hard look at the Velodyne DD12 instead. Aside from it's superior performance it possesses the best onboard EQ system of any sub. It can be set to auto EQ, but it's when used manually that it really shines. At least you have the choice.

    But, if the object is to spend as little as possible achieving the maximum bang for the buck, then I would take the SVS SB12 mentioned earlier. It absolutely slaughters the dismal PV-1 on performance grounds and if a superbly veneered compact box with superb custom driver looks like it belongs on the boot of a Nova, then A) that'd be a damn fine sounding Nova and B) I don't hold out much hope for the looks of a listening room that the suppository PV-1 would blend in with.;):D

    Are you sure it was this sub you looked at? If not, have another look here.

    Russell
     
  8. table manners

    table manners
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    wow.that DD12 is massive i would never get that in my room.
    I did look at the wrong sub it was one with a long tube.
    I like the SB12-plus im going to really consider it,i have read that the pv1 is very solid and does not vibrate much.I want all round bass but i don't want a sub thats going to move much,it will probably go next to a party wall.

    PS.what do you guys think of the kef psw4000.I have never really like the lower end subs (the amps go and the sound was not very deep) but the high end subs are suppose to be very good.(stock clearance price as well)
     
  9. bsimmer3000

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    I have the PV1, but a lot of people on here don't like it! I wanted something small and nice looking as i didn't want to ruin the look of my living room with a large black box. It's a very compact sub and takes up almost no room. Yes you can get subs that go lower and louder for less money. but if like me you got a good deal on it then it's worthing considering. I have a 25x15ft living room and this sub has no problem filling that space. I'm 50/50 with music and movies and On music it has to be heard to be believed also on HT it works very well for it's size. People are amazed that it can put out bass like it does for its size. I have it at about 60% output and amp on lowest setting as it will be heard no problems 2 floors up, as I'm in basement. It's a very powerful and compact sub but like some say if you ain't worried about looks and neighbor shacking bass then get something else but if ya want something small, nice looking, great build quality and great sound for its size then i don't think theres a lot that can touch the PV1.
     
  10. Andori

    Andori
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    I guess you saw one of the PCs :) Not acutally sure if you could fit the PC Ultra in a Nova :rotfl: (I liked the look of the PC when I saw it in the flesh)

    I think one reason that many people here don't rate the PV1 is from viewing independant test results such as Ilkka's (see sticky at the top) particularly when it's list price is considered. In those results the PV1 doesn't even go as low as the BK XLS200 which is 30% of the list price of a PV1 (your OP said you want your bass to go lower).

    From the specs the DD12 is physically similar in size to both the PV1 and the SB12+. If you wanted big and loud, then the PB13 takes some beating for it's cost:devil: (see the various comments from forum members who are just getting them)
     
  11. table manners

    table manners
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    I have put three 10" diamond subs two power amps and four 6X9 in a nova boot.

    The dealer i would get the pv1 off has said if i want a second one then he will do it for the same price again as long as i get some other bits too (sub cable)
    I listen to a lot of music so fast solid bass with good slam is what im after and i think the pv1 will back up my fronts well.
    Its just very tempting to blow the budget and get a silly powered sub but my neighbor's have already said their kitchen cupboards and light fittings vibrate sometimes.I think any bigger driver subs are going to really p**s them off.
     
  12. Daddy k

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    a pv1 is just not worth the money, and to buy 2 as one isnt good enough just smacks in the face of stupidity,
    id rather purhae 1 great sub for less/the same, than 2 ok ones.

    but hey the bowling balls will look great atleast.
     
  13. Member 96948

    Member 96948
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    I'm really beginning to think that you don't actually want advice. You just want someone to rubber stamp your decision to buy the PV1, from a dealer who's clearly thinks he's seen you coming.

    I mean, he's said he'll do you exactly the same price for double the number of items, but only if you buy extra items as well. I can't believe you haven't snapped his hand off.:suicide:

    All the same I'll try once more because I think you can be saved!:)

    Filling a room with deep, clean, bass is a lot harder and very different to jamming a load of large drivers in a car. The volume of a car is tiny in comparison, making it far easier to pressurize, plus rooms suffer from resonant peaks in their response, because their dimensions equate to the wavelengths of bass.

    There are some other facts worth noting. Bass is loudest at walls. The closer you get to a wall or especially corners, the louder bass gets. The omni directional radiation pattern of bass means that in the average sized room, bass does not drop off appreciably with distance. So, even if you were to put your sub on the opposite side of the room to your party wall, it will make no difference to your neighbours.

    Next, vibration. It's no secret that there's a large part of every sub that vibrates in an extreme manner. If it didn't you wouldn't hear anything.;) I'm obviously talking about the driver. The vibrations the driver puts into the air far, far outweigh any cabinet borne vibrations into the fabric of the house. If they didn't, all you would hear is the cabinet and that would be a crap sub. As the cabinet has far more mass than the driver (assuming it's built well, it should), then any vibration from it will be absolutely minimal and could be solved with small rubber feet. Fact is, the vibrations in the air where they should be will act on the entire area of the party wall and be responsible for 99.9% of what your neighbours hear.

    What annoys neighbours more than anything else is distorted bass. Good clean deep bass does not travel so noticeably. A clean 20Hz takes some serious SPL to hear, but the distorted version of it with strong 40Hz (2nd) and 60Hz (3rd) harmonics are easily audible to the human ear at far lower levels, so they travel through walls with apparent greater ease.

    And this is my main beef with the PV-1 - It is an overly expensive, beautifully engineered solution to an number of questions that aren't being asked. If floor borne vibration is a problem, "lets throw a £600 cabinet at it and two tiny opposed drivers at it rather than the £15 off damping feet that will work just as well". If cabinet vibration is a problem "lets throw a £600 metal sphere at it, rather than build a space efficient 'box' built properly like the rest of the world does.

    This is the point, in pursuing this one theoretical design problem, that does not exist to any noticeable degree in a competent product, they've screwed up any other of beneficial characteristics that have resulted in a sub most notable for the amount of distortion it kicks out:

    1. 8" drivers. No seriously respected sub on this planet uses 8" drivers. Ok, their combined radiating area is equivalent to an 11" driver, but because there's two, they cost twice as much. So why not just use one 12" driver of higher quality? That's exactly what most manufacturers do for good reason.

    2. Assuming that we're happy on the needlessness of the spherical cabinet for engineering reasons, it's actually the worst possible shape in terms of space efficiency. Assume for the sake of argument that it is a 12" sphere. That would give it an internal volume of 904 cu in. A 12" cube would have a volume of 1728 cu in - getting on for twice the size, but occupying the same floor space.

    Why is this important? Two reasons. Bigger means naturally deeper. More air resonates at a lower frequency. It therefore requires less power to go deeper. More air takes less squashing and stretching by the driver, which requires less power, or makes more of the same power. Some of the power outputs quoted for some small subs look huge, but the reality is that halving the volume requires double the power for the same output. 1000w may be required to match the output of a 500w sub that is only an inch or two bigger. That's a rough way of putting it, but the theory is correct.

    The fact is when all is said and done and whatever the cleverness (expense) of the engineering, the PV-1 is significantly outperformed by subs that are in reality, no bigger and certainly less costly. If the point is to get the deepest, cleanest bass for the least money (and it is), the PV-1 is a most spectacular failure. In essence, they've thrown the baby out with the bath water, but hunting down done and engineering problems that actually have little bearing on bass quality.

    Have a look here and learn to understand the graphs. Compare the PV-1 to the BK XLS-200 at ONE THIRD of the price. Compare it to the SVS SB-12 at HALF the price. You'll have to look elsewhere for a similar test which includes the Velodyne. Google 'subwoofer tests'.

    And don't think adding a second PV-1 will change things radically. Two subs do not go deeper than one. They offer 3-6dB potential volume gain with 6dB only available if you place them side by side, at which point you'd just buy a bigger, better sub to fit in the same space. The extra output does allow both subs to be turned down giving a cleaner output (good for you and your neighbours) but if you look at the graph, it's like getting the 90dB sweep results at 95dB - or in other words, two PV-1s at nearly the price of the massively superior DD12 (which isn't big - look again) will just about approach a single SVS SB-12 in some respects.

    Remember, bigger subs do everything easier and as with any sub of any size, if it annoys the neighbours - just turn it down. Howver a bigger one is less likely to and this instance bigger equates to a 14" cube.

    Damn, you've really got to want the look of a sphere on the carpet, because there is simply no other reason for it.

    Russell
     
  14. table manners

    table manners
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    Thats depends on how much you are paying for the pv1,i totally agree that at £950 for it then the money is better spent somewhere else.The idea of using two is for a more equal sound in deferent sitting positions.Saying its a stupid idea is a bit off,as will one sub fill a room better then two at lower volumes?
    and a second sub would be an add on that may or may not come later.
    I would prefer to risk getting a smaller sub that i can live with,more then a huge sub that will take over the room.
    I liked the size of the sunfire subs as it is not to big when compared to how low it goes and its spl output.
     
  15. McFaber

    McFaber
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    table manners,
    If you can strike a good deal on a Pv-1, just go out and get one.

    I have a PV-1 myself and I'm perfectly happy what it does and I suppose more importantly how it looks....:cool:

    I just wish people would get over the fact we all don't want our subs to resemble dust bins,...:D
     
  16. Andywilliams

    Andywilliams
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    I dont think anyone wants a dustbin in the room what they do want is a great sounding system and if your happy with your ball of distortion its your choice :smoke:
    Andy.
     
  17. McFaber

    McFaber
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    Very happy thanks....:p
     
  18. AngelEyes

    AngelEyes
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    I think most people who give the PV-1 a hard time and other lifestyle subs, need to cast their minds back a bit. The point is until you actually hear a 'real' performance focused sub you don't know what your missing and if you don't know, you probably don't care.

    I hate the snobwoofery that comes with thinking performance comes at the expense of all else. Look at all the forum favourites, honestly I wouldn't want one of those mingers in my room if I could help it (unfortunately my addiction is far beyond rehabilitation). They are all boring looking boxes, in most cases room dominating too. If I didn't have the ability to hide my sub in an alcove and behind a plant, I might have a PV-1 too. :p

    Can we just cut a little slack for people who's priorities might be a tad different to the percieved norm on this forum. :)

    Adam
     
  19. Peter314

    Peter314
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    :D:D
     
  20. Andywilliams

    Andywilliams
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    Hi Adam
    It isnt snobwoofery if you look back on my first post you will see i pointed out if table manners wanted a small sub he could get better performance and much better value from bk or svs thats what these forums are for i thought, Back in 2003 i had gone through a number of subs from very well known sub manufactures rel b&w etc when Ian J said he had imported a sub from ohio and the sub performed much better than most subs he had owned or listened to before so after alot of reading and a few exchanged messages from Ian i went ahead and purchased my first svs sub and haven't looked back since, Its nice to help people out and make sure they get good advice but sometimes it isnt what the person wants to hear.
    Andy.
     
  21. table manners

    table manners
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    well what can i say,just for any one reading i know a bit more about room acoustics then most people and i am aware that the room has a big impact on how a system will sound,please see my gallery pictures where i have added treatments for some of the problems i have had in my room.

    I wish to thank anyone that has replied to my thread and assure you that its not falling on deaf ears,i have good knowledge of how to design/spec and build cinema systems but will happily accept that many forum members know a hell
    of a lot more then me especially when it comes to subwoofers.
    I am in the process off weighing up specs/size/looks on a few subwoofers from the likes of B&W,REL,SVS and velodyne and greatly appreciate anyone who gives
    any advise on these.:)
     
  22. McFaber

    McFaber
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    Andy, I know you give your advice with what you think is your best intentions...:cool:

    If I wanted outright performance I would have gone for a SVS Ultra or a Velodyne DD with SMS, but price wasn't in question here, size and aesthetics were.
     
  23. Member 96948

    Member 96948
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    andysb, I'd be interested to know which other components you have bought that were equally constrained by such aesthetic criteria. I can only imagine that you have experienced torment when it came to the electronics.

    I'd also be interested to know if you took the time to listen to products unshackled by such criteria as all such informed decisions are a balance. If you did, how did you come to balance the aesthetic/performance equation.;)

    Russell
     
  24. Member 96948

    Member 96948
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    Cast their minds back to what? Square boxes that didn't perform against the current ones that do?

    BTW, you do have one of those mingers in your room and I've never seen the plant.;)

    Form is a product of function and I've yet to see an example of where that equation can be turned on it's head and result in a superior audio outcome. I hate the idea that aesthetic values dominate all others, particularly in this instance where it's clear that a small box sub is all the OP is considering. Aesthetically, we can ignore the 'buy a PB-13 because I've heard they're good posts' because they're irrelevant in this case. It has been stated implicitly, if not explicitly, that a compact is what is desired.

    None of the realistic options are room dominating behomoths.

    There's a balance to be struck and currently, if you tend toward aesthetics, you tend away from performance full stop. There are no 'designer' subs that currently deliver real performance. I'm trying to make it clear that given the minuscule amount of real estate taken up by either option, neither are imposing and one option will be ultimately more satisfying when your eyes are fixed to the screen as they should be.

    For every one else, there's PV-1s, Kef HTB2s, Crane Audio this, Anthony Gallo thats.

    Russell
     
  25. McFaber

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    I've read a good few threads on the subject, including yours Russ and I do know your very serious about your hobby, hence you've gained a lot of knowledge in the process and not to forget you've unselfishly passed that knowledge to help others in their quest.


    The subwoofer tests sticky shows the performance of the BK farts all over the PV-1 and I very well know this, but in the end I'm afraid to say for me, the higher aesthetic appeal, with a very competitive price of the PV-1 won over the performance & value of the BK XLS200.

    The end of the day, I'm happy with the purchase I made and ultimately that what matters to me.


    Andy
     
  26. AngelEyes

    AngelEyes
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    Hi Andy,

    This comment wasn't aimed at anyone in particular and not at even this thread in particular. I was also trying to keep it lighthearted, hence the 'snobwoofery' comment :).

    I have just noticed a lot of people slamming *cough* the PV-1 when it is a completely valid choice for someone who places a higher emphasis on aesthetics.

    I think it is right to point out the alternatives as has been done in this case but sometimes when the OP doesn't bite, it becomes a crusade to convert them to the 'right' way of thinking.

    Don't get me wrong I have been crusading enough in the past on various topics (a few not so long ago became quite amusing) but this particular topic of 'performance vs aesthetics' more than any other, is down to personal taste and as such shouldn't have a right or wrong answer. :)

    The point I was making is that if you haven't heard a high performance box then a PV-1 is going to sound and look very good in that frame of reference.

    As I said I was trying to keep things lighthearted and a little self abuse seemed appropriate at the time. :D As for the plant you are correct, it died and was recently replaced with a chair that personally I think is uglier than the sub but SWMBO rules.... :rolleyes:

    You know I don't disagree, I just think it is ok for other people to disagree :)

    Adam
     
  27. gray3393

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    I have owned alot of subs in the past year or so not one for bragging:D

    eg. svs sb12,xls200,pv1, I currently have a def tech supercube 2 & this 12"
    square monster blows the three subs i have mentioned to another planet.

    Not wanting to get into a sub war but you should seriously consider the def tech supercube 2. And i am not just saying this because i have one for sale;)

    just trying to help you mate.

    Regards
    Gray
     
  28. Member 96948

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    I'll admit to snobwoofery and would always advise the largest box you are willing to fit into your room. However, I do appreciate the size constraints applied to people, as it wasn't so long ago I lived in a two up, two down, victorian terrace. The sub in my life was an MJ Ref 200 back then - another so called award winner.:rolleyes:

    I do worry when I hear the choice being made on dis or mis information and won't hesitate to stick and oar in and that's what I felt was happening here.

    PV-1 owners justify their purchase decision based on the look of the thing and then continue to say it's a great sub (it's not), offering deep bass (it doesn't), with no audible distortion (it doesn't, it offers lots of the nastiest 3rd harmonic variety), that underpins floorstanders (only if you have tiny or crap floorstanders) nicely. That is misinformation at best, disinformation at worst and I will continue to point this out.

    Beyond it's looks, the only areas it performs well in are, >70Hz distortion where it's exceptionally clean and would work well crossed over to very small satellites at high frequencies. It's sloping/falling response would make it a virtually no brain room integration option and that also delivers as a side effect, a reasonably consistent low group delay. It has all the hall marks of a so called 'music' sub.

    If the OP still buys one or two PV-1s, as long as he's taken in the arguements which apears to be the case, he's better positioned to make the value judgement. If he decides, based on informed opinion, to buy a product that suits his needs as a result of an aesthetic judgement, I cannot and wouldn't, argue because that's the nature of a subjective choice.

    The fact is, sdtated clearly in his signature for all to see, the OP has B&W DM603S4s, which are 39" high, 8" wide towers sporting three 6" main drivers and a style that relies on imposition rather than blending. He clearly didn't compromise on the speaker front, so to do so on a small sub that doesn't go deeper than his main speakers, would seem a bit odd no?

    Russell
     
  29. Andywilliams

    Andywilliams
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    Very well put russ as usual :smashin:
     
  30. McFaber

    McFaber
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    I find some posters on here downright insulting & patronising....:mad:
     

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