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Rel Storm & Q400 Living Room Shootout Preparation

Discussion in 'Subwoofers' started by Mark Ward, Apr 24, 2004.

  1. Mark Ward

    Mark Ward
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    I just picked up a Q400 off the Forum and want to do a fair fight comparison against my existing Rel Storm in my living room. I have to say that the Storm really seems to like the one spot where it has to live and integrates wonderfully.

    I use the room mainly for Sat TV and DVD-A/SACD Music, but some DVDs get played in there when I can't be bothered to warm up the HT room.

    I've read all the threads that suggest the q400 is a bit of a challenge to set up and my first problem is that it doesn't actually fit where I had intended it to go. I see wife trouble on the horizon:nono:

    Some quick questions to help me on my way.

    1/ +12db or Normal? Surely if you calibrate it shouldn't make a difference should it?

    2/ WHere do Q400's like to sit? The strom is behind me by the right rear speaker but you really can't tell where it is.

    3/ Forget Neutrik, Dom didn't have the lead and I like a simple life anyway, but what mode would you suggest for Sat/TV and DVD-A/SACD Music

    4/ If I decided to keep the Storm in the Living Room would the Q400 be any additional benefit in my HT room? Could it work alongside my SVS 20/39plus in any meaningful way?

    Thanks,

    Mark.
     
  2. fufna

    fufna
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    Hi Mark, nice to see the Storm still going strong:clap:

    One use for the rear sub could be as a surround fill-in sub... if you get the phase right, it can be an awesome combination.

    You only need a low powered effort compared to the main LFE so the Q400 should do nicely.

    Have a search for LFE surround fill-in on some of the more esoteric US AV sites.

    Could also be of good use in your cavernous room mate;-)
     
  3. russraff

    russraff
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    Mark,

    I used to have a Storm, and now have a Q400. Hopefully I should be able to offer some advice...:lesson:

    The Q400 is a more powerful sub that goes lower than a storm with less distortion (from practical experience rather than REL's site). The Q400's AV bias means that the sub is more impactful than the storm, making music sound "heavy" in some situations. This characteristic means that a Q400 can't be too near the listener - it would be too obvious. I have also noticed that the Q400 hates corners, the bass seeming to be overpowering and boomy. I have mine along a side wall at 45deg facing into the room away from the screen.

    In regards settings: The internal amp seems to be very powerful and drives the Q400's driver with gusto. Therefore don't use the +12db option; its not needed. I have my Mode switch set to No. 2 LFE, but use a Neutrik cable as well as LFE feed. I found that the Neutrik cable smoothes the bass out, especially for very low bass. Obvioulsy this depends on what your front speakers are capable of (mine can go down to ~45 Hz) and what kind of bass management is possible.

    To be honest, I would exchange the Q400's power and deeper reach for a slightly slower bass response over the Storm, but that choice may not be yours.

    Any more questions and I would be happy to help.

    Russell
     
  4. Mark Ward

    Mark Ward
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    It's been fantastic in there, so much better than the Strata II I had previously. I got goosebumbs the first time I got it set up right.

    It was the price of the Q400 that tempted me to have a look and give it a try, so I'm not going to lose anything if it turns out the Storm is the better suited option for my living room.

    I hadn't appreciated the power and pedigree of the Q400 though, but there do seem to be plenty of varied opinions of it's capabilities.

    I didn't like the Servo15s (I know I'm in a minority there) and the SVS is great in my big room. The idea of using the Q400 for support duties in that room makes a lot of sense. I know I'll be getting more SVSs when I can afford them.

    Do you mean as a 2nd LFE channel sub or high level connected at the rear?

    You know I find those American forums a overwhelming really, but I will have a hunt.

    I'll be giving the Q400 a try in the living room today, only trouble is that it won't fit where the Storm lives and may have to face me just inside front right speaker. My wife's not going to like that at all.

    I won't be able to try the Q400 in the HT room properly until the carpet goes down in about a week or so's time. The room is currently full of boxes as I work out what kit is going to fund my future upgrades. Rotels, B&W CDMs are deifinitely going to go, but I'm having real trouble parting with my Celestion A2's & A1's & A4C which are now in my 2nd room powered by a £180 Sony reciever:eek:

    I'm hoping that the Q400 will work in the living room as selling the Storm will also go towards my future plans.

    Anyone know....Do Q400s work better facing you?

    Cheers,

    Mark.
     
  5. Mark Ward

    Mark Ward
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    Thanks Russell, most useful.

    I have to admit I found it a little un-subtle when Dom demoes it with a Madonna CD (Sorry Dom:blush: , but Hey! you're world is about to change with that new Velo DD15:))

    That's not a problem in either of my rooms.

    My Fronts in that room are currently Celestion A2's, very capable, though currently set to 80hz crossover for better Sub integration.

    If I read this right you're saying the Storm may be the best choice for my Music system?

    I have to say that a lot may be decided by my wife, I can't see her getting used to the Q400 "In the room" whereas the Storm fits in beside my HT rack.

    Stiill, she's out for a while this morning so time to rip out everything in the living room again before she gets back:devil:

    Thanks again!

    Mark.
     
  6. russraff

    russraff
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    Mark,

    Yeah, I was. I use my Q400 for AV use only - rarely playing CD's through the system (my Yamaha isn't really a stereo amp at all). Therefore I haven't played with the Q400's musical abilities.

    I have been messing about with the Q400 and have made something of a discovery, though. If you only use the Neutrik connection and, when listening to stereo music, disable LFE in your bass management, the sub is actually quite tunefull. My yamaha has all front L and R bass signals sent to main speakers and LFE to the sub. Therefore, no bass is sent to the sub from the dedicated L+R speakers at all save through the Neutrik cable. I don't know what processor/amp you have, so this may not be possible, though you could always just pull out the LFE feed when needed.

    Admittedly, the x-over is set to 40Hz, but the Q400 can still play plenty lower than that. From memory, the Celestion A2's are very good stereo speakers with some low bass response themselves (and tough to drive, too if I recall). I would be tempted to set your A2's to Large and use a Neutrik cable from your amp.

    Russell

    PS if you want a neutrik cable, they are available here about 3/4trs of the way down the page (Neutrik to Neutrik) for £20
     
  7. Mark Ward

    Mark Ward
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    More useful advice!:)

    I didn't actually get to test the Q400 in my living room today, it was such a nice day and I didn't want to spoil it. Configuring it today would have meant having to let my wife know I bought it!

    I'll have a try tomorrow, if I'm feeling braver

    Actually... If I get a 15M one I could snip it at 10M and have a 5M one for my Storm AND a 10M one for the Q400:smashin:

    Cheers!

    Mark.
     

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