1. Join Now

    AVForums.com uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Sub Sats vs Full Range

Discussion in 'Home Cinema Speakers' started by Petey, May 17, 2005.

  1. Petey

    Petey
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2003
    Messages:
    714
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    21
    Ratings:
    +16
    Hi everybody.

    Can a sub sat system match a full range system?
    Please take into account room size (large-main room / small-bedroom)
    Please give reasons for and against.

    Honest opinions please.
     
  2. Astaroth

    Astaroth
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2004
    Messages:
    2,283
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    London
    Ratings:
    +117
    I cant answer if it is possible for sub/sat system to match full sized speakers but my experience is that I havent heard any that have matched a similarly priced full size package.

    I dont have the greatest amount of experience with sub/sat systems - and I think the line between sub/sat and 'full' system is getting blured with a couple of systems that almost fit somewhere between the two - what I have found with them is that they can get close to a similarly priced full system for AV sound but are significantly lower quality when listening to music.

    As far as I am concerned sub/sat systems were designed for AV work and for either people who were limited for space or wanted a 'more stylish' solution than having 6->8 large boxes arround their living room. I dont think there are many manufactures who have gone from making full size equipment to now also making sub/sats have done so because they think they can get a better sound from the sub/sat configuration
     
  3. skinnyfat

    skinnyfat
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    It would be my guess that pound for pound, a Sub/Sat system wouldn't match a full range set. Certainly there are brilliant sub/sat systems out there (Kef, MS Genie, Bose come to mind) and they would outperform many cheaper or similarily priced full range speakers. The question again comes down to your needs and preferences. Do you prefer the 'style' offered by sub/sat, is space an issue. If the answer is no, then IMHO the fullrange speakers are the ones to go for because they dont compromise on anything (size, space, style etc).

    Skinny
     
  4. severnsource

    severnsource
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2003
    Messages:
    322
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Ratings:
    +9
    It all depends on what you mean by sub/sat. If you are talking about the typical one box AV system with tiny satellites then the answer is that the satellite speakers won't have a sufficiently extended LF response to integrate well with the woofer.

    If you are talking about proper hi-fi, then there is no reason why a sub/sat system should be any worse than full range speakers. In fact there are some reasons why a sub/sat system may be better.

    One of the difficulties of speaker design is controlling panel resonances. They are much easier to control in a small box than a large one, so most inexpensive large speakers will have poorly controlled cabinet resonances that will colour the sound. ALso small speakers have a narrow front which can give a better polar pattern than a wide front panel, which is often used in full range speakers. If the large speaker has one common cabinet for all the drive units you can get a degree of unwanted acoustic interaction between them, more upmarket large speakers often use separate LF and mid enclosures to control this problem.

    Bill
     
  5. Petey

    Petey
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2003
    Messages:
    714
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    21
    Ratings:
    +16
    I currently have a full size speaker system and have been thinking of changing to a sub/sat system due to space restrictions. I'm just curious of how much a hit in quality this may have.

    My room is not overly big, its squared shaped, approx 12x12ft.

    My current speakers:

    Definitive Technology BP10 Fronts (Floorstanders)
    Definitive Technology CLR2002 Center
    Definitive Technology BP2X Rears
    Rel Strata Subwoofer

    Was thinking of changing to canton speakers, was gonna use:

    CD100 as fronts
    CD50 as center
    and using the CD1 movie package speakers for surround and rears and the sub
    (My amp can run 2 sets of surrounds and rears as well)

    I am totally satisfied with the way my system sounds, but its just an issue of space now.

    Could the cantons fill my room with sound that could match my def techs?

    Amp is denon avc-a1se
    DVD is denon 2200
     
  6. Thunder

    Thunder
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2004
    Messages:
    1,763
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    41
    Ratings:
    +14
    In my exprience with a no compromise design a full range speaker set up will out perform a sub sat system. The main reason is simply due to more seamless integration. :)
     
  7. Jake James

    Jake James
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    Hi

    Just one more thing to consider. The boundarys are blurring even more between sub/sat & conventional speakers. The system outlined above by petey is not just a sub/sat system. the front 3 are actually 'lifestyle' speakers which combines both the stylish / discrete benefits of sub/sat and the larger volume / lower frequency capablitys of a conventional speaker.

    The CD100 for example use 4 x 3" drive units + tweeter, but manages to get down to 50Hz. This gives far better integration between speaker and sub.

    You can now have great sound and style in the same box.

    cool

    Regards

    JJ
     
  8. 30CenturyMan

    30CenturyMan
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2004
    Messages:
    760
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    31
    Ratings:
    +47
    For sensible money, you won't get speakers that can produce a full-range signal, 20Hz to 20kHz. I guess that means sub/sat is the only option for most folk. :)
     
  9. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand
    Distinguished Member AVForums Sponsor

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2002
    Messages:
    24,284
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    166
    Location:
    The Borders
    Ratings:
    +2,573
    Petey

    With a decent source, Processing and Amplification there's no reason why a well chosen Satt/Sub system shouldn't provide the sound your 'looking' for.

    Music is more difficult than Movies but it can be done.

    There's more 'load' placed on the subwoofer as it has to underpin the Satts and Centre and I'd suggest sticking with your current Sub or considering a Velodyne SPL or similar as a foundation for any Satt/Sub system.

    Anthony Gallo is one range we use to great effect - I'm sure others will have personal favourites for you to shortlist.

    If budget allowed you could also consider the Artcoustic Diablo 5.1 Cinema Pack - not your conventional Satt/Sub system but possibly the most discrete option you could consider.

    Best regards

    Joe
     
  10. z5461313

    z5461313
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2001
    Messages:
    1,463
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    66
    Ratings:
    +179
    Would it be true to say that large full range speakers tend to make themselves more noticeable when watching a movie? ie sound comes out of it and you are tempted to look at the actual speaker making the sound?

    Where as sub-sat speakers are smaller - the sound is not as noticeable as to where it is coming from and they merge into the background better from a sound point of view?
     
  11. Gorecon

    Gorecon
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    Having had the Kef Egg satellite system and now have a conventional speakers in their place I can say that for music the Satellites simply cannot match the conventional speaker types.

    As for movies then the Eggs were/are(I still use them for rears) good.

    So if music is important then I would be very carefull about going to a Sub/Sat system only.
     
  12. 30CenturyMan

    30CenturyMan
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2004
    Messages:
    760
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    31
    Ratings:
    +47
    No.
     
  13. 30CenturyMan

    30CenturyMan
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2004
    Messages:
    760
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    31
    Ratings:
    +47
    I think you're grouping the entire spectrum of sub/sat systems into the 'lifestyle' package type category. There are many sub/sat combinations which will reproduce music (as well as movies) to a standard even the most ardent hi-fi enthusiasts will appreciate. :lesson:
     
  14. Gorecon

    Gorecon
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    I have to disagree with you. The difference in quality between a decent set of 'Conventional' speakers and a set of Satellite speakers is dramatic.
    I bought a set of Sonus Faber Concertinos for the L/R channels and the music performance from them creates a great soundstage.
    The L/R eggs did not. Its as simple as that. :lesson:
    I understand your point about lifestyle speakers which can be more about looks than performance. But the Eggs are not what I would call a lifestyle set. Even though their look is quite unconventional.
     
  15. Andywilliams

    Andywilliams
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2002
    Messages:
    2,078
    Products Owned:
    1
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    51
    Location:
    notts.
    Ratings:
    +63
    Hi
    Well sats dont have to be small, my m&k 850s are bigger than some bookshelf hi/fi speaker.
     
  16. Ian J

    Ian J
    Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2001
    Messages:
    25,528
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    166
    Ratings:
    +4,906
    I would suggest that before you use :lesson: smileys that you at least get your facts right. Your Sonus Faber Concertinos may create a better soundstage than KEF Eggs but that has something to do with the huge price differential between the two speakers rather than their differing designs.

    I am willing to pit my M&K satellites against any full range speakers of equal price in terms of soundstaging and sub / sat integration as I am sure would Scott3

    Of course they are lifestyle speakers, that's exactly why they have such a quirky shape.
     
  17. 30CenturyMan

    30CenturyMan
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2004
    Messages:
    760
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    31
    Ratings:
    +47
    Gorecon,

    I'm not surprised your Sonus Faber Concertinos create a great soundstage, they will reproduce frequencies down to around 55Hz. This is still not 'full-range', but it is a hell of a lot 'fuller' than that of the Keff Eggs' response (which is both a satellite and a lifestyle product!).

    The term sub/sat refers to any system where a subwoofer is used to underpin the main 'satellite' speakers, be they conventional bookshelf type, or lifestyle designs.

    As I mentioned earlier, a true full-range speaker design would reproduce frequencies across the whole spectrum (generally considered to be 20Hz to 20kHz). Something which not many speakers are capable of.

    In terms of home theatre, most speakers (even most floorstanding speakers) would be considered small and treated as satellite speakers. Allowing the low frequencies to be handled by a subwoofer. :)
     
  18. Gorecon

    Gorecon
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    IanJ I have respected your replies in the past. When someone uses a lesson smiley to me when I offered my opinion, do you not think I am not entitled to my opinion as well?
    My facts were not wrong as I have had both systems and I know there was a big improvement when I swapped the Eggs around.

    Anyway rather than turning this into a slanging match.

    All I can say is that I went down the Egg Sub/Sat route and it did not offer me the musical performance I wanted.
    This link here deals with a similar thread although slightly different:

    http://www.avforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=208399&page=2&pp=15

    The Concertinos have a retail price of £699, ok you only get 2 speakers. The eggs retails around the same price, although you can get them lower.

    Petey original question of: "Can a sub sat system match a full range system?" I still think this is not possible if you are wanting to maintain an element of quality.

    Where do you draw the line at what a sub sat system is?
    Do you buy x4 B&W 805 Nautalluis speakers, a Centre channel and add a Sub and call that a Sub Sat system?
    I guess it comes down to price like most things in life
    :)
     
  19. alexs2

    alexs2
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2002
    Messages:
    13,896
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    136
    Ratings:
    +1,674
    In many respects(and speaking as the owner of a not dissimilar system),an N805 system,partnered with a sub of suitable quality is indeed a sub/sat system.
    The 805's on their own do have reasonable bass(but need a truly powerful and tolerant amp to work well),but dont really offer much below 40Hz,and to reproduce the full range of music,you will need a sub.

    Yes it does come down to price,and the laws of diminishing returns,but either way can produce excellent results,if the systems are properly integrated and set up,and the converse is equally true.

    I've also owned a proper full-range system(triamped active Linn Keltiks),and would fully agree with those above who say that a proper full-range system is expensive,and to get down to 20Hz flat requires fairly high power(in that case over 500W worth of Krells)plus the crossovers and speakers,for only 2 channels.

    The ultimate expression of a sub/sat system is probably the Wilson System 7,consisting of the equivalent of the Puppy on top of it's own dedicated bass system...on it's own,the Wilson Puppy is an excellent(and expensive)near-field monitor,but has little bass below 50Hz.
     
  20. 30CenturyMan

    30CenturyMan
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2004
    Messages:
    760
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    31
    Ratings:
    +47
    Gorecon,

    You're still missing the point. :)
     
  21. Gorecon

    Gorecon
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    Your right that almost any speaker setup can be consider a Sub/Sat system.
    Price is a major point.

    My main point in this thread is if you want decent music hi-fi then a realistically priced sub/sat system cannot match a realistically priced full range system. I am talking sub £1K systems.
    Yes if you buy a Watt sub/sat system then that is also going to be very musical. But at £15K+ is not something petey is considering I guess.
    I don't use my sub when playing music. But do use if for DVD's etc.
     
  22. 30CenturyMan

    30CenturyMan
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2004
    Messages:
    760
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    31
    Ratings:
    +47
    I would still totally disagree. :)
     
  23. Gorecon

    Gorecon
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    I think we'll have to agree to disagree. :) :)
     
  24. 30CenturyMan

    30CenturyMan
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2004
    Messages:
    760
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    31
    Ratings:
    +47
    Since I don't quite understand your argument, I guess we'll have to. :suicide:

    Have you read any of the other posts? Do you understand what a full-range system is? Do you understand what a sub/sat system is? Do you understand what a lifestyle system is? :confused:
     
  25. alexs2

    alexs2
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2002
    Messages:
    13,896
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    136
    Ratings:
    +1,674
    I think you've missed the point of what I was saying....I wasn't suggesting that the original poster might be interested in such a system,but was saying that a sub/sat system can be extremely good,if the right components are used,and the Wilson is a supreme example of such a system.

    I would also say that it would be impossible to find a true full-range system in anything like the sub £1K region,and that a properly integrated sub can produce results every bit as good as a so-called full range system in that price bracket,or above.

    The end result is that whatever system,be it sub/sat or "full range",it has to work in your own room,and sound good to you.
     
  26. Gorecon

    Gorecon
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    Ok my point is this. If Petey wants a sub/sat system that can offer the same musical performance as his current full range system and the price of them were the same. Then I cannot see how a sub/sat system can match the full range system.
    When I say sub/sat system I am referring to small little speakers such as the Kef eggs and not Bookshelf size speakers. Maybe I should have been clearer on this.
     
  27. Ian J

    Ian J
    Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2001
    Messages:
    25,528
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    166
    Ratings:
    +4,906
    :lesson:





    .
     
  28. Gorecon

    Gorecon
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
  29. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand
    Distinguished Member AVForums Sponsor

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2002
    Messages:
    24,284
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    166
    Location:
    The Borders
    Ratings:
    +2,573
    Hello all

    z5461313 - with correct/careful placement any loudspeaker should not really give 'its' position away; you should be able to 'position' effects, voices and instruments within the sound stage but not the Loudspeaker.

    Your much more likely to be able to pinpoint most Satellite loudspeakers as most folk wall mount them where they 'look' correct rather than taking the time to find out where they 'sound' correct; conversely the majority of systems that incorporate a pair of Full Range loudspeakers for Front Left and Right duties tend to suffer less obvious 'localization' across the front of the Sound Stage as folk tend to place the Full Range loudspeakers in a more 'conventional' HiFi triangle.

    Taken to the extreme I can use my Full Range loudspeakers with my AV Processor (set to 2:0) and produce an excellent sound with lots of Movie effects appearing around the room and if I had a way to 'hide' the loudspeakers you would not know there were only Two loudspeakers in the room or where they were positioned.

    Gorecon - I think if you had upgraded your KHT Sub along with the front Left and Right pair of Satellites to a higher quality Satellite set you would have found that it is possible to use a Satt/Sub system to attain decent Movie and Stereo sound.

    Best regards

    Joe
     
  30. alexs2

    alexs2
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2002
    Messages:
    13,896
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    136
    Ratings:
    +1,674
    The real point is that none of these systems are full range,and certainly not at that price range.
    This is in no way intended to belittle any of the systems being talked about,simply to point out that it's an error to assume that either a sub/sat system,or floorstanders,at this level,will deliver a proper "full range" response.

    Joe's comments about proper integration of the speakers into the room is very relevant,as many speakers and systems are let down by poor attention to that,and particularly in the case of subs,where room integration is especially important.
     

Share This Page

Loading...