Where to go from here - DIY or off the shelf?

Discussion in 'Subwoofers' started by reapol, Aug 20, 2013.

  1. reapol

    reapol
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    Hi All,

    We bought my wife's grandparents house last year and I've spent the last 12months renovating it. I got my wife to sign off on upgrading to a 'proper' HT system (specs below) in April and since then I've been slowly improving it. However, I'm still not happy with the sub.

    I originally started out with a Rel T-Zero and last month I upgraded to an SVS PB-1000 which is fine but I'd still like more power. Money wise a £2-3k sub would be a very hard sell and is likely to end in divorce so i've been thinking about DIY or cheaper options of the shelf but I'm stumped.

    Any suggestions?

    Cheers,

    Colin

    Room specs:
    ........____________
    ....__|S..... TV.....D|
    ../........................|
    .|.....C2................| 5m (ceiling height is 3m)
    .|.........................|
    ..\__.....................|
    ......|_____C1____A|

    .<--.......6m......-->

    S= Sub
    Cx=Couch
    A=Alcove
    D=Door

    Total volume is 90m^3 / 3162 cubic feet

    AV Specs:
    Samsung 60" 5series Plasma
    Yamaha RX-V673
    (5) B&W M-1
    SVS PB-1000

    Misc:
    PS3
    Xbox 360
    Intel NUC running openelec
     
  2. kbfern

    kbfern
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    Go the middle route get a USC15 subwoofer for £1400 nothing will touch it under £2500 other than two USC15's.

    It is a subwoofer with a 15" high quality driver in a 50cm cubed cabinet and a separate 2200 watt amplifier.You could build something similar for about £800-1k if you have the skills.
     
  3. reapol

    reapol
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    Some photos of the room...
     

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  4. MemX

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    Keith has pretty much summed it up :)

    The 2200wRMS Ultimate Sub Company USC15 in the sturdy 'black crackle' finish for c.£1400 is a true bargain compared to anything else out there, especially when it has better, wider-range output than some subs that are more expensive than it!

    Whereabouts in the country are you? You could demo one at Gecko, home of USC, or they may be able to arrange an in-home demo for you :)
     
  5. mattkhan

    mattkhan
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    your receiver has no sub eq afaik, you are corner loading your sub & 1 of your room dimensions is a multiple of the other hence 2 of the modes will reinforce each other. This means your response is likely dominated by modes (in the region of 30 & 60Hz) forcing you to turn it down overall. Do you rely on the receiver auto setup or have you done any tweaking yourself?

    I recommend you invest in a sub eq device or a higher spec receiver. I think getting a beefier sub would be a waste of time until you've done that. An antimode for ~£200 or so is probably the most cost effective plug and play route or try and pick up an Onkyo 818 if they're still around for £600 or so (and sell the yamaha). Antimode looks like the cheapest route to HT performance and hence marital harmony ;)
     
  6. reapol

    reapol
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    Mattkhan, I've just bought an antimode 8033 from alan @ idealav so first step is seeing how that works out when I get home on Friday. I've primarily been using YPAO to set up the levels and then using a tape measure to tweak the distances.

    I've thought about investing in a MiniDSP U-MIK1 and trying out REW but that's another 60-70quid.

    Currently stuck on a boat in bad weather so lots of time to do research :)
     
  7. reapol

    reapol
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    I'm outside Glasgow so I may as well be on the moon when it comes to home demos :)
     
  8. mattkhan

    mattkhan
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    ok well looks like you're set then for the immediate future. I'd be inclined to live with the antimode for a while before doing any other equipment changes. If it still doesn't live up to expectations then I'd get REW enabled (a £15-20 SPL meter will do the job for checking the sub out) to see what is really happening in room and use that to help inform what to do next.
     
  9. reapol

    reapol
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    Bugger it, if I'm going to do it I may as well do it properly :)

    Ordered a U-MIK1 since its USB and doesn't need a line-in which my new laptop won't have.
     
  10. reapol

    reapol
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    Just out of curiousity...

    would it be fair to say that

    YPAO + Anti Mode 8033 = Audyssey XT32?

    Just been looking at the Onkyo 818 and at £599 its a good buy but how much better than my 673 I don't know given that my amp drives my speakers fine.
     
  11. scottthehat

    scottthehat
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    sub wise depends on your diy skills, diy will cost a lot less you can get 2x15 in 60l cabs for say £900 then the amp to run both £400 then if you want to finish both boxes ay get them sprayed would probably cost £300 or if you do it your self cost of the meterials.
     
  12. reapol

    reapol
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    I've no problem with building a sub, I build/make (& repair :( ) radio controlled aircraft (large petrol & turbine powered) as another hobby just not too sure about cost vs time vs benefits.

    I mean comparatively how would a DIY 15" compare to an off the shelf 15 such as a USC15 or Sub15 or etc... ?

    Edit: didn't mean to come off sounding big headed btw :)
     
  13. mattkhan

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    I believe the consensus view (/awaits stampede of posts disagreeing) would be that, for the sub, an antimode and xt32 are equivalent products on average (i.e. one might be better or worse at dealing with specific rooms but overall, they're about as effective as each other). I suspect, but have not used YPAO so can't be sure, that YPAO < XT32 for the mains.
     
  14. mojogoes

    mojogoes
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    Both subs you have mentioned at the end of your post are very good of all accounts........in the case of the usc15" I guess you could build one similar that gave similar performance for less......and the sub15 a lot less which in my case I have just done and I used even cheaper drivers.................if my subs are 70% of either i'll be happy but as I've built two I know i'm forwards of a 100% of either one of subs mentioned.

    I was also into building heli's gassers but not turbo props but I've seen a few fly..........used to be big into the Vario german tackle :)

    if you've got a cheapo avr as I do its a no brainer going with an 8033 cinema.
     
  15. scottthehat

    scottthehat
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    well lets put it this way you could make the same performance wise as the usc for £380 driver then £300 for an nu3000(maybe a tad more) then what ever it costs you to make the box and finish it how you want, lets just say that cost you £400 total, that's £1080 for a sub like the usc 15, but if you buy an nu6000 instead of a n nu3000 if you want you can add another when you want for the cost of £780. now if one sub can compete with £3000 subs then 2 will be just mental.
     
  16. kbfern

    kbfern
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    A basic finish (black vinyl wrap) USC15 with Inuke NU3000DSP amp will cost £1395, you could build a similar 15" using the same driver and amp for £700 + the cost of cabinet, so assuming approx £200 to get an acceptable finish inc materials around £900.

    So is it worth the difference, IMV unless you particularly want to build your own and have decent diy skills buy a complete USC15 as their drivers are slightly moded to the standard and you may or may not end up with the same overall sound and aesthetic quality & standard of finish.

    The Sub 15 is certainly of a higher standard of finish to the USC15, the performance of the USC15 is probably not quite as good but there again it is approx half the price of the Sub 15. A fair chunk of that cost difference is dealer margin/recognised name/standard of finish. So it boils down to what you feel comfortable in paying.
     
  17. scottthehat

    scottthehat
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    have you seen this keith, look at some of the diy vs of the shelf, like the velo dd18+ vs say a diy stereo integrity ht 18.
    Data-Bass
     
  18. thedude

    thedude
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    This guy is spot on. Spending that much on a sub with your receiver is silly. Upgrade your amp get two subs I had a rel before with my Yamaha rxv 2000 it was the nuts. Your receiver needs changing
     
  19. mattkhan

    mattkhan
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    to my mind the value proposition of DIY comes down to 2 things;

    1) you value your time at £0 or close to zero (probably equates to you enjoying the activity itself) & have the time to spare to do the job
    2) pretty much complete design flexibility (which obv requires you acquire a degree of knowledge to be able to do that) subject to commonly available drivers though this is probably irrelevant if you have pretty plain vanilla needs

    if the former is true (and you have the skills) then DIY is a no brainer to my mind.
     
  20. reapol

    reapol
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    Eh? Matt pointed out that my AVR had no subEQ which i'm rectifying since i've bought an antimode. Which is £220 versus selling my 6month old 673 at a loss and buying the 811 which would cost me around 400-450 for the pleasure.
    Other than the extra wattage per channel and the fact that it does 9.2 vs 7.2, both of which i'm not going to use - why would I upgrade?
     
  21. reapol

    reapol
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    I've sort of come round to this thinking and I'll take this up in a thread in the DIY forum.
     
  22. mojogoes

    mojogoes
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    I guess you can also look at it this way! when ever you need to upgrade your avr you can get away save some money with buying the cheaper model as you'll always have the 8033.:)
     
  23. reapol

    reapol
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    Well the U-MIK1 is on the way from HK and helicopter off of here is booked for tomorrow - good news all round.
     

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