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World Class Subwoofers - Part 1

Discussion in 'Subwoofers' started by Ian J, May 8, 2004.

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  1. Ian J

    Ian J
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    Stereophile Guide to Home Theater has changed it's name to Stereophile Ultimate AV and in the first of it's newly renamed editions there is an article entitled "World Class Subwoofers" in which 12 of the big boys are put through their paces in this and the next two editions.

    All of the testing has been done outside to negate any in room problems and many and varied readings were taken and graphs constructed to provide quite an objective review as well as the more subjective listening tests.

    The biggest disappointment of an American review of "World Class Subwoofers" is how few of them are known or available in the UK.

    The four looked at this month were the Revel B15 at $2,995 which has already been reviewed by Home Cinema Choice and Wilson Audio Watch Dog at $10,850 Next up was a newcomer, Kleiss Sound with the S15A at $2,449 which interesting enough is available on a direct from manufacturer basis and finally the big beast of the month which was the Genelec HTS6 which is the most unusual subwoofer that I have seen with four 12" drivers all in a row, each driven by it's own amplifier. This beast costs $9,950 and is nearly six foot wide and would fail every WAF test known to man.

    The Genelec delivered 6-10db more undistorted level than it's closest rivals and 15-20db more than the smaller units in the survey. It also sounded cleaner at all playback levels irrespective of the source, be it test tones, music, sountracks or special effects.

    Roll on part two next month.

    For those interested in how the testing was done, there is an article here

    www.revelspeakers.com
    www.wilsonaudio.com
    www.kleissound.com
    www.genelecusa.com
     

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  2. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    yes and it's as massive in real life as it is in the picture. I liked it when I heard it. The little brother HTS4 is rather superb too.

    Gordon
     
  3. alancolledge

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    Yikes!:eek:

    Is home cinema going the same multiple driver route that car audio seems to have?

    I've seen, and heard/felt, lots of car installs involving many large subwoofers pushing out obscene dB's.


    Or is the future for the best subwoofers in the world just turning into nothing more than a bank of PA bass bins......
     
  4. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    If you want to shift lots of air undistorted at high levels you can't do it with a little box.......Using an HTS6 in your living room is obviously a bit stupid. (as is puting 12" bass units in a car). I don't think they are starting a trend or that Home Cinema is going to go down the BIG and Loud is beautiful route.

    I'm sure Genelec would advocate using the correct tool for the job. They have a range with devices for most room sizes.

    Gordon
     
  5. Ian J

    Ian J
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    I don't think that I have heard a Genelec sub but the feedback from Event 2 seems to imply that they are the biz
     
  6. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    Ian, I was never a believer until I heard Elliots. Then he made me go with him to Genelec's stand at CEDIA USA (where they had one of those mothers....) and I started to come around. Then we did Event2 and the big demo room was great. It's even better now it doesn't have piles of projectors in it and the decor etc is finished.

    I was so impressed I did a cinema for a client with Genelec stuff and it was fantastic. The subs really are quite special but because they have so few dealers in UK (for domestic use, commercial they are world re-knowned and have large market share), it's hard to get a demo.

    Gordon
     
  7. X3ELS

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    Ahh yes but you only need one dealer ;) especially one who has had his room eq training from the boys at Genelec :)
     
  8. danny-p

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    Huuuuuge!!! Wouldn't mind a few of them
     

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  9. Nimby

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    For that sort of investment I'd prefer an in-wall, true infinite baffle. WAF asside the average AV punter doesn't have the room (or need) for such a massive device.

    Why not 4 identical boxes arrangeable in any configuration that suits the buyer? Because it simply looks more impressive the way they do it? (if you like wardrobes lying on their sides)

    Nimby
     
  10. X3ELS

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    Nimby

    Have you seen the size of some of the dedicated theatres in the states, products like these are exactly what is required and these are designed to be baffle mounted. Just like i do with my Genelec sub at home and the ones at the shop.
     
  11. Nimby

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    X3ELS

    You're quite right of course. I was thinking more of the UK domestic market. The Average American home does seem to be larger or open plan. (or both)

    I suppose a few can be shoe-horned into the odd British stately home? :D

    Given the nature of bass couldn't the beast have been seperated into four seperate boxes? There seems to be no structural need for a single box.

    4 drivers + four amps = four boxes? :)

    I suppose one should be grateful that you only have to install them once. Until one moves house of course. :D

    One of those might finally end my wife's demand for more bass. Our neighbours would probably demand that we move. (probably to another country) :devil:

    What sort of minimum volume AV room are we discussing here?

    Regards
    Nimby
     
  12. alancolledge

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    You lucky, lucky man. :smashin:

    Does she have the tea on the table when you come home, fetch bear from the fridge and let you watch the football over her soaps!!

    Tell me your secret!
     
  13. Nimby

    Nimby
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    Nope. We both have a deep loathing for any kind of sport! There are so many better ways of enjoying life without doing it second (or third) hand. :D

    On second thoughts, that also means films and music doesn't it? :(

    Well.... life is for making the rules up as you go along. :)

    Just don't make any you can't break later. ;)

    Nimby
     
  14. Nic Rhodes

    Nic Rhodes
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    No surprize about the Genelec coming out so well, just speak to these guys and you will know why.
     
  15. elcid

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    Ha! My eight SVS 16-46 (passive) units can handily surpass those figures (and adding two B4+ subs will add air moving capability in my system even more......'cus there plainly is no displacement's substitution :D ).
    These subs will leave the Wilson Watch Dog :censored: and the rest of the featured subs eating the probervial dust quite easily... :smashin:

    -THTS

    "...hi, my name is Frank...and am an SVS bassaholic..." :hiya:
     
  16. Nimby

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    Frank

    If you ever get anywhere near reference level they're going to have to scrape you off the floor with a shovel! :devil:

    Nimby
     
  17. elcid

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    They already have!... :D

    -THTS

    "...hi, my name is Frank...and am an SVS bassaholic..." :hiya:
     
  18. Nic Rhodes

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    Lets compare like with like. No SVS will get anywhere near the big Genelec, not even close. Fine you can throw numbers of subs at it but Genelec can also play that game and play it much better again.
     
  19. Nimby

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    :oops:

    Nimby
     
  20. Tom Vodhanel

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    >>>Lets compare like with like. No SVS will get anywhere near the big Genelec, not even close.<<<


    I have inherent bias of course, but I do think a B4+ would be close. I have been measuring all SVS products in much of the same manner as this reviewer uses for 5+ years now. So while our data won't be directly comparable(we are using different mics, computers, ect)...I do feel there would be strong parallels.


    >>>Fine you can throw numbers of subs at it but Genelec can also play that game and play it much better again.<<<


    But to what end? Realistically, if someone emailed me and asked if SVS would be able to supply something comparable...and I said "yes, I believe dual PB-2+ subwoofers would be comparable in performance(and size) and at a small fraction of the cost" Would a *reasonable* counter to that be..."well, then it is only fair to consider spending $20,000 on "dual" Genelecs too"? How is that really fair? We are spending $20,000 instead of $2500...and you will be looking at about twice the total enclosure size...so neither of those issues are even close to comparable. I guess I just don't think many folks would be more worried about some arbitrary labeling of something as "one subwoofer".


    Tom V.
     
  21. elcid

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    You know, after reading Tom Vodhannel's post in this thread momentarily got me thinking that because of my teenager-like enthusiasm for SVS products, and what I have to say/opine about them, that I probably put him in a bad spot. Yet I quickly realized that I didn't needed to worry about it 'cus he's a big boy and can handle criticism with an unmatched grace and wisdom rarely found in the field of audio equipment engineering and manufacturing (if this is taken to mean that I hold him in high esteem, well, you're absolutely right 'cus I do have a lot of respect for his talents as design engineer of infrabass systems, and for several other personal reasons as well)...which is immensely more than I can say of some other audio equipment designers/engineers I've encountered through my many years of involvement with audio (sound reproduction at home for the most part, though I've delved in the DIY field besides running an audio society for several years as well) and video (home theater, primarily).

    If truth must be told, it appear that I may have come across like a gun-totting cowboy, shooting my mouth indiscriminately, when I posted (first time in this Forum--thanks for the welcome, bob! :rolleyes: ) my opinions regarding the Genelec and SVS subass systems, something that some have definitely seen as being uncouth and rude. So be it! I absolutely see no need to apologize for my communicating style since afterall these are my personal opinions and is my God-given right to share 'em at will. ;)

    Now, I've heard Genelec, Wilson, as well as many other commercial subwoofer systems in several occasions at the Winter CES in Las Vegas and elsewhere through the years, so I know who Genelec is, what they produce, and how they perform. Yet it strikes me sort of funny that you appear not to have auditioned neither the Genelec nor SVS subs in person, nor to have read my post with more understanding, so I think you're hardly qualified to critize SVS products (your opinions, true enough, yet hardly accurate).
    Get this through you head: a B4+ will at least equal--if not altogether surpass--the sonic performance (given that proper amplification is provided, of course) produced by the Genelec system in question, and do so at a fraction of the cost (you must also consider the fact that the B4+ utilize better--nay!--superior bass drivers, having an infinitely more handsome physical appearance than the far more utilitarian-looking Genelec sub).
    How I know this? By directly comparing the technical test results obtained from both systems by audio reviewers (although conducted by different testers, true enough. Check SVS' website for links to reviews of their products; one features an article/review of the B4+ sub). :lesson:

    Here again, I don't believe you know what you are talking about.
    Look, my EIGHT 16-46 tubed SVS subs (that's eigtht 12" drivers versus four contained within the Genelec enclosure. Do the math!) powered by 1000 watts per channel (I run a 4x4 sub configuration per channel) will easily trounce the Genelec system.
    However, I realize that not many people utilize (or even want to!) that many subs, so what's more revelant here would be to do a comparison of the Genelec sub vis a vis an SVS B4+ unit (with two of these beauties there would simply be no performance contest whatsoever, and still be way under the $10K the big Genelec monster demands as the price of admission. But for the time being just let's concentrate on one-to-one unit only, shall we?).

    Don't get me wrong...the Genelec is an excellent subbass performing system in its own right (and a far better deal than the Wilson Watch Dog sub as far as I am concerned), but I nonetheless truly think the B4+ outperforms it, and is by far the better choice given the more affordable price...

    -THTS

    "...hi, my name is Frank...and am an SVS bassaholic..." :hiya:
     
  22. sticker

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    Frank I think that you are playing with fire, if there is one person on this forum who knows what he is talking about, it is The Beekeeper....................of course all IMHO :lesson:

    John
     
  23. Nobber22

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    Chill out Frank. We don't appreciate members waving their members about and comparing size on this side of the pond. While we are all interested in AV and love subs, this forum has only just emerged (mostly unscathed) from a 6 month "my sub brand will EASILY spank yours" sub tirade/marathon and I for one would like to give it a rest for a bit.

    Welcome to the forum and we look forward to hearing about your subs, just try to wind your neck in a little first.

    Regards. :)
     
  24. buns

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    Elcid,

    Ditto to John. Nic is highly respected on here and anyone who is anyone on here wont question his knowledge, you will make few friends by acting so insultingly towards him.

    ad
     
  25. Stuart Wright

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    ...errr no. There's no such thing as God and if you don't keep within the rules of good conduct and respect, you will soon find yourself excluded.
    Your opinion is welcome, but this forum is different to other forums in that we require people not to be disrespectful to others.
     
  26. SimonO

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    '.......Using an HTS6 in your living room is obviously a bit stupid. (as is puting 12" bass units in a car.'

    Whats's wrong with putting a 12" subwoofer in a car..?
     
  27. elcid

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    "Frank I think that you are playing with fire, if there is one person on this forum who knows what he is talking about, it is The Beekeeper....................of course all IMHO :lesson: "

    John,

    Thank you for the warning (and you more than civil and less hostile approach, Sir. I do mean it! :) ), but am not easily intimidated.
    I actually checked his "dossier" and found nothing that would indicate to me I should be afraid of him in any way, shape, or form. However, two things I dully noticed: one is that his post was rather hostile so felt impelled to retort in kind, and two: that he seems to be the fair-haired boy around here (actually, he reminds me of the women strangler bad guy character in A. Hitchcok's superb film FRENZY more than anything else, IMHO).

    You know, back in February 12th of 2004 I had to be hospitalized because of very serious medical conditions...and wound up actually meeting Death face to face. Being a survivor of such ordeal has deeply driven home the fact that life is really too short to become concerned with this sort of trivialities, inaness, and wasting precious time and energy on lost causes, thus am closing the last page on this chapter. Cheers!... :)

    Frank J Manrique/The Home Theater Society
     
  28. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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  29. elcid

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    Yeah...I have dully noticed it...

    Too bad I missed all the action! I would have liked to mix it up a bit... :D

    Really appreciate the welcome, Sir, but I am out of here (no sour grapes...no regrets). Cheers!... :)

    Frank J Manrique/The Home Theater Society
     
  30. elcid

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