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Subs - How big is Too Big???

Discussion in 'Subwoofers' started by Dimmy, Aug 6, 2003.

  1. Dimmy

    Dimmy
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    I'll (eventually) be teaming a subwoofer with the Mission 775Es I'm getting from Smurfin, and am wondering where to draw the line with the subwoofer...

    I was originally looking at the Mission M5AS, but now Smurfin's guaranteed me I'm going to want a Servo 15 - which I can get for £499 - and the several SVS posts on this very forum have begun to warp my mind that little bit more...

    My listening room's only 4m x 4m so my question really is - which subwoofer will suffice for the room - considering that realistically I wouldn't want to spend more than about £600-700???

    Thanks for reading
     
  2. Phil Hinton

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    Although there are many small enclosures on the market, bass actually needs as big an enclosure as possible to give the best results. Thats why the real air shifters are also huge, HGS 18, SVS Tubes etc. The smaller enclosures use over engineered drivers and amplification to give a sense of air being shifted, but i have only heard one or maybe two small subs that can actually get close to doing the business, and none of them are made by Rel or Velodyne.
    For a room your size I would be looking at something like the servo 15, CHT 15, SVS 20-39. The first two use servo controlled 15" Drivers in large enclosures, the third uses a 12" driver but in a large tube like enclosure that is ported. All three have amps between 300w and 550w to drive the units and produce good results.
    The next step up from here are the more expensive models, but based on the same ideas and principals. For big bass you really do need big drivers and enclosures, and the power to drive them. Of course this may lead to issues of WAF acceptance, but hey you only live once, and the SVS seems to be a little more female friendly in this department.
     
  3. HotblackDesiato

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    If AV is all you're going to use the room for the Servo will be fine. A word of warning though i recently had a similar sized sub (Velo CHT-15) and have just had to let it go because it was a tad too big in the lounge.
     
  4. Dimmy

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    I have the space for all these subs - it doesn't really bother me how big they are and anybody who objects whilst in the room will get a smack in the mouth...

    Or not. It's unlikely that I'd use the sub for music since I'd be using a separate stereo amp to drive the 775E fronts for music playback, so yes in all honesty the sub's only going to be used to create a terrifying low-end for movies.

    The servo 15 is rather ugly from what i've seen of it - and it will kill the room aesthetics a bit, but I guess big bass costs in more ways than money...
     
  5. Dimmy

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    Oh and - do the SVS subs and CHT-15 merit the extra cost over the Servo 15 for A/V use???
     
  6. Ian J

    Ian J
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    That is a difficult question and the only person who can answer honestly is GaryG as to my knowledge he is the only Servo 15 owner to have heard an SVS (mine)

    It would appear from postings to a different thread that the CHT-15 isn't in the same league as the Servo 15 and SVS though.
     
  7. Smurfin

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    Dimmy, you are right in that the Servo 15 is an ugly beast.

    Best thing I can suggest is come over and have a listen, and see what you think.

    I've already planned the viewing material:D
     
  8. Smurfin

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    btw it doesn't include "Sense and Sensibility".;)
     
  9. Jase

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    I'll let you know when an SVS 20-39 PC Plus arrives here.;)
     
  10. groundy

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    Have you heard the Velodyne SPL 800 or SPL 1000 Phil? While a large enclosure (if done correctly) is preferable, at 600 & 750W RMS output respectively, I can tell you for sure that these little things get uncomfortably close to doing the business.....especially in a 4m x 4m room ;).
     
  11. buns

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    I have a smallish room and the smallish REL subs werent good for me (though that could be a result of something other than the size!). Though im informed from an installer i know that carver subs are very capable at a very small size (in disagreement with some on here), so size cant be everything for a sub, but it probably means alot.

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  12. HotblackDesiato

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    Well a Micra with a 2litre turbo might be nice...i kinda hope so as it's the route i'm been forced to pursue.
     
  13. NicolasB

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    You might be interested to know that in the US the Velodyne CHT-15 costs $800 and the Paradigm Servo 15 costs $1500. Whether this means that the Servo15 is overpriced in america or underpriced in this country I wouldn't like to say, but it would definitely be silly to assume that the CHT-15 must be better than the Servo 15 just because (in this country) it costs more.

    Certainly both SVS subs and the Servo 15 in this country benefit from their respective sales models. SVS subs are sold directly from the manufacturer, so there is no margin for a retailer, or for a UK distributor. Servo 15s are only sold by Richer Sounds, which therefore acts as both retailer and distributor (so there is a single mark-up) but they bought in bulk - an entire cargo ship container at a time - which means there are economies of scale both in terms of shipping costs and also (I would speculate) in terms of the price paid to Paradigm.
     
  14. Nic Rhodes

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    The Servo 15 are big black boxes (which I like). The SVS (which I have heard several models of) are large but it is all down to how you visualise them. They actually have a small floor foot print but they are tall. They actually take up not very much space / area (same as Rel Q150?) BUT use the space better.

    I have said often here I think the CHT isn't in the same league as the SVS or Paradigm, both of which I think are excellent. I would be happy with either and would not swap one for another.
     
  15. SanPedro

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    Dimmy

    I bought a Servo 15 in the sales pages of this here forum for only 300 notes last month and basically I'm a dog with 2 tails with it. Ian J may have been a bit sniffy about my existing Sherwwod receiver calling it a Ford Fiesta (sorry Ian, no offence), but to me the system now sounds bloody fantastic.

    I bought it off a guy with a room smaller than yours, and no he wasn't selling cos it was too big. In his room he had the volume on the sub set at around 25% of its potential and it fair shook the place, but it wasn't OTT.

    In my own lounge, which is twice the size, guess what? I too have the volume set at 25%! You basically don't need the volume on the sub any higher. With higher volume on the sub and a cranked up volume on the receiver the sub appears to go into distortion and starts to sound rattly. Which may be due to the receiver which is getting close to full volume.

    It gives a whole new dimension to movies. The amzing thing is the variation in LFE from one disc to another - current fave examples being Blade 2 and Daredevil. Many discs almost seem to have the LFE turned off

    With music I find it equally at home. Tried it with Dark Side of the Moon (old hippy that I am) and the first track 'Breathe' just shakes the room with the intro heartbeat sound.

    Anyways, regarding the looks... in a small room you could always use the Servo 15 as a lamp stand or something.;)

    BTW I have mine in between my front speakers with the centre speaker above it.

    basically i think you'd be ecstatic with either.

    cheers

    chris

    PS. If you're ever in West Yorkshire give me a shout for a demo
     
  16. Smurfin

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    IanJ is chuffed with his SVS, just look at his posts;)

    As for the Servo 15, PoshBloke came round tonight and had a demo, ask him what he thought and you'll get the idea:D

    As for viewing material:

    Star Wars Episode II (intro sequence, waaaay below 20hz here)
    Star Wars Episode I (Pod Race)
    Titan AE (Ice Field)
    Jurassic Park III (T-Rex vs the other big mutha)
    Vertical Limit (the intro, bass a little more subtle here but just as powerful)

    Plus anything else you wanna hear:D
     
  17. Dimmy

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    Smurfin - the M5AS is only marginally smaller than the Servo 15 - and infact it's a fair bit taller too.

    I have a Groove Armada CD, the opening track to which has some unfeasably low bass notes which might make a good tester...

    That infamous intro to AOTC Episode II near-enough killed my old set-up, be interesting to see how the Servo 15 copes with it.

    Sauron's Demise in the intro for Fellowship Of The Ring goes pretty low, as - off the top of my head - does the chase in the mines of Moria with the Balrock persuing the Fellowship.
     
  18. buns

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    what actually is the issue of a big sub in a small room? I presume the sub will tend to be a bit boomy (because of the small room dimensions) unless you have some sort of equalisation or room treatment?

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  19. Dimmy

    Dimmy
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    Well I had a moderately large sub in my old listening room and it did have a very slight amount of boom - simply because it was so close to a rear wall i'm guessing (and it was rear-ported).
     
  20. Jeff

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    Aren't the wave characteristics on larger subs different to smaller ones. If the wave only had 10ft to travel would it be wise to use a 18" sub?
     
  21. groundy

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    I always thought it was recommended to buy the best Sub you can afford, regardless of size or room dimensions :confused:. I don't see any reason as to why an 18" driver would be boomier than a 10" driver, all things being equal, i.e., room acoustics and placement options. Maybe the different sound wave characteristics do play a part though Jeff?
     
  22. buns

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    Well a smaller room will have higher frequency natural modes so i suspect they will be more audible hence giving a boom. Likewise, the smaller your room the more that the 3 dimensions will be similar hence and of the room modes will overlap more giving you additional boosts to your response at given frequencies.

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  23. Jase

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    I'd say you need to take time and find the best spot for the sub within your room. I've got a CHT15 (soon to be joined by an SVS 20-39 PC Plus) in a small "room" and have no boom. :) You just need to spend time tweaking it, the phase (which makes loads of difference to the sound of my sub) etc.
     
  24. Dimmy

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    Unless this Servo 15 is awful with music (and providing it impresses me this friday at Smurfin's) it looks as if Richer Sounds will be getting my money (not the first time).

    Thanks for the helping fingers everybody.
     
  25. fondie

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    I was looking into getting a REL Quake but someone suggested that there were better subs for the money available and pointed me here, quite a few people seem keen on the Servo 15, i'm in the UK, but I can't see a Servo 15 on the Richer Sounds website, is it only available in store? or by phone? and could anyone tell me how much it is from them please?

    At the mo i've got a Marantz SR6300 and 6 x Mission m74i's, all advice appreciated, as long as i'm not crashing this thread.
     
  26. NicolasB

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    The Servo 15 costs £500 from RS, plus another £100 if you want to buy an X.30 controller (which you won't need if you're intending to plug the sub into the subwoofer output of a home cinema amp/processor, but would need if you wanted to insert it into a stereo-only system).

    I bought mine mail order (£25 delivery), but RS wound down their mail order service at about the same time. I suggest you try enquiring at your nearest store. (Note that RS are legendary for being unable to answer questions about stock levels, though).
     
  27. Matt F

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    I ordered one from them on Monday 4th August and it should be ready for me to pick up next Wednesday.

    You have to persevere with them - the guy I first spoke to said he didn't think they still did them and, if they did, they almost certainly didn't have any in the warehouse. I asked him to check and they did have one or some in the warehouse so I ordered one.

    When I chased them this Wednesday (as there was a slim chance that it may have arrived this week) a different chap I spoke to asked what I had ordered - "A Servo 15? - I don't think we do those anymore" - "Uh, yes you do - I ordered one on Monday" - "Oh, well it doesn't seem to be here so it should be next Wednesday".

    So I should get it next week but I'll believe it when I see it.

    Just one note on the X30 controller - although, as Nicolas says, this would allow you to use it in a stereo system, my understanding is that the X30 still doesn't offer speaker level connections - for those you need the X20.

    Matt.
     
  28. Dimmy

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    The guy I spoke to at Richer Sounds Sheffield said I could have a Servo 15 delivered to my door within two days for £510...

    Although depending on who answers the phone that information is likely to change.
     
  29. Dean

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    I'm sure your right, it was just from a point of view that he had a fairly small room size and that some good deals were going for the m5as which is a good sub IMHO. I'm sure the SVS, Velo's and Servo's go deeper. Still waiting next year maybe to get a decent sub, have to see what's available then.
     
  30. Dimmy

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    For the last time - the M5AS isn't a small sub! It even weighs more than the Servo 15...
     

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