Official HSU ULS-15 Thread - Page 13 - AVS Forum
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post #361 of 2713 Old 03-24-2010, 08:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SugarmillMan View Post

Maybe my expectations for this sub were unrealistic, given the hype and the price point for this equipment. I don't know. However, I welcome the suggestions from everyone here.

My room measures about 4000 cubic feet (roughly 19 x19x 11) with several large openings to adjoining rooms. I set up the sub in a closed corner while Leo from HSU Tech Support was on the phone with me. Pete Hsu double checked my settings while I was on the phone with him, as well. They are both real nice guys and very professional. They had me do everything that was recommended so far.

Maybe I was hearing junk spl sound from my Polk 505. I don't know. Pete also wondered about this. I was expecting to actually hear some bass and feel the impact of Movie explosions, gunfire, crashes and music. The HSU just seemed completely underwhelming.

So these are my choices:

1. Continue to tweek the settings and placement for this sub.
2. Return the sub and purchase something else.
3. Purchase an second ULS-15 to go with this one.

I don't know what to do here. I really don't.

Yes I think you might of had a much higher expectation that a single ULS-15 would be able to pressurize your listening area. Only because of the additional open areas.

Most of the hype is from members who have at least a dual drive (in a smaller area than yours) or a member who has 4 of them in a treated HT room and then myself who has a Dual Drive with two Velodynes for a total of four in a 10,000 ^3 area.

So to help you out I would do "the move and tweak some more" to see if you can find a better place for at least 2 weeks. If after that you come to like it some but still needing something more, you could entertain maybe getting a MBM from HSU to fill in the upper octave.

But I can tell you for sure that most of our members who bought one ULS-15 had purchased the second one in less than 6 months from the first one. And haven't looked back.

Good luck and ask any questions you might have.

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post #362 of 2713 Old 03-24-2010, 08:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hometheatergeek View Post

So to help you out I would do "the move and tweak some more" to see if you can find a better place for at least 2 weeks.

OR simply buy another ULS because IMO 4000^3 feet opened to another room is still quite a bit for a single ULS to handle.
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post #363 of 2713 Old 03-24-2010, 09:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SugarmillMan View Post

Maybe my expectations for this sub were unrealistic, given the hype and the price point for this equipment. I don't know. However, I welcome the suggestions from everyone here.

My room measures about 4000 cubic feet (roughly 19 x19x 11) with several large openings to adjoining rooms. I set up the sub in a closed corner while Leo from HSU Tech Support was on the phone with me. Pete Hsu double checked my settings while I was on the phone with him, as well. They are both real nice guys and very professional. They had me do everything that was recommended so far.

You have to take into account the space in the adjoining rooms. The bass waves will not be contained just to your listening area. More than likely, you may be trying to pressurize your whole house.

Maybe I was hearing junk spl sound from my Polk 505. I don't know. Pete also wondered about this.

Probably. I've inserted a link above if anyone is interested.

I was expecting to actually hear some bass and feel the impact of Movie explosions, gunfire, crashes and music. The HSU just seemed completely underwhelming.

What are your sources and settings?

So these are my choices:

1. Continue to tweek the settings and placement for this sub.
2. Return the sub and purchase something else.

You may be looking for a large ported sub or two (VTF-3 MK3.)

3. Purchase an second ULS-15 to go with this one.

My personal choice. Your comment about the price point of the ULS-15 would lead me to believe that budget is not an issue.

I don't know what to do here. I really don't.

I also like the suggestion of adding the MBM-12 MK2. It's a well-designed and effective piece of equipment. I believe HSU offers a 5% discount to its returning customers. You may be able to find one on eBay or AudiogoN -- they tend to pop up in spurts from time to time.

Hope this helps.

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post #364 of 2713 Old 03-24-2010, 09:22 AM
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SugarmillMan,

Can you try a location for the sub closer to your seating? For example, next to or behind your couch? That will let you hear, and feel, more of the output of the sub.
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post #365 of 2713 Old 03-24-2010, 10:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Tdekany View Post

We are talking about 2 different things here. I don't know what sub you have, but to call the ULS wimpy? To me that sounds like this sub is weak. With proper setup even an stf2 sounds unreal. And that is a 10" sub.

Let's see how the owner feels about his sub once the problem is solved.

I own two ULS subs and have had a STF2 in the past. They are all terrific subs. They do take some placement and tweaking to sound their best, and if you have a large space to pressurize, you may need multiples to get rid of bass nulls. If your seating position is in the middle of a large room, a single sub probably won't be enough to cut it, unless you use nearfield positioning, which is not a option for everyone.

One thing sugarmillman might try is replacing the ULS with a couple VTF3's, with those subs you are getting more SPL for your dollar, and whatever the size of your room, a couple of those guys should handle it just fine.
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post #366 of 2713 Old 03-24-2010, 12:14 PM
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I think the other posters are on to something here that you are coming from a sub that is very different, has much more midbass, and the deep bass you heard was probably second and third order distortion. Your Polk started to roll off bellow 50hz and had a peak output of 105db in the 50hz range. Although it hasn't been formally tested, it would be safe to assume that the HSU with it's 33mm xmax will perform on par with other 15" sealed subs and should put out at least 110 db at 50hz.

I don't know if anyone asked, but what did you like about your Polk sub?

I would suggest you try the following. Listen to music with your two subwoofers. Find a CD you like that has bass guitar, and also kick drum. Listen carefully to the bass guitar first with your old sub. Are you hearing distinct changes in pitch, the start and stop of the strings, the initial attack. Now put the HSU in and listen to the same thing. I would expect for the attack and pitch definition to be better with the HSU. You won't have as much "perceived bass" probably. This is because you are coming from a sub that put out most of its energy in the 60-80hz range, and area that many who have never heard otherwise presume is deep bass.

Also, do you have an SPL meter. A quick check with that will tell you if the HSU is performing up to par. It should clearly have more output than your current sub, but won't be earth shattering (5-6 db increase is significant, but won't change you from feeling like there is inadequate bass to tear the house down bass).
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post #367 of 2713 Old 03-24-2010, 12:33 PM
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WHile the linked measurements show the Polk to be a pretty decent sub, it does not have extended deep bass on its own (room gain likely not an issue in a large space) so if you are playing with no distortion, you are getting more midbass and less low bass. If you correct that so that the total is flat, it will seem, at first, to be missing midbass.

Second, while it appears to be a much better performer as far as distortion than my sub, it does start to have audible distortion at relatively low levels, especially below 32 Hz or so. What this means is that loud sounds with significant sub-32 Hz content were being reproduced with a lot of extra sound in the midbass range (for example the 25 Hz component of a sound might yield audible levels of 50, 75, 100 and 150 Hz sound due to the distortion. Again, this may make the sound "fuller" (part of why we like distorted guitar sounds, I think) and when you take the distortion away, the sound may be less exciting (again, think distorted rock guitar versus clean guitar sound).

You may just need to let yourself get used to what clean flat bass sounds like.
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post #368 of 2713 Old 03-24-2010, 01:43 PM
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This has certainly been an education. I've learned more today from reading this thread than I ever knew about sound reproduction. Thank you for your advice!

My crossover settings are at 80. The ULS-15 settings are what Pete suggested to me. I agree that what I probably thought was deep bass was actually midbass. Go figure.

I've been experimenting today with speaker placement have have the ULS in a corner, slightly behind my seating positon. HSU recommended I try hooking up both the ULS and the Polk with a spplitter, which I have done. I'll give it a try for the next 24 hours.

Maybe I will end up purchasing one or two VTF 3's or other ported subs. (and cost is always and consideration.) Do you think I would have good results with mixing one ULS 15 with one VTF-3?

B&W 804D2, B&W HTM4 center, LSiFX surrounds, HSU sub, Onkyo TX-NR3010, Parasound Halo A31, NAD t975
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post #369 of 2713 Old 03-24-2010, 01:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SugarmillMan View Post

Do you think I would have good results with mixing one ULS 15 with one VTF-3?

That again would be an experiment on your part. We can not say with any conviction how any subwoofer will work in your house. Can it be done, Yes but it is still your room and your ability to intergrate dissimilar subwoofers. You are right now trying to do that with the ULS and the Polk.

Ain't this hobby fun?

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post #370 of 2713 Old 03-24-2010, 02:13 PM
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SugarmillMan -- I use one VTF3.3 Turbo in a viewing room that is both huge and sonically challenging. My HT room is 25x25x9.5, which works out to nearly 6,000 cubic feet. To make matters worse, the room opens into a double wide front hall, which leads another 60 feet to the front door. That hall opens onto both the dining room and living room.

Despite my viewing room's inherent problems, my single 3.3 Turbo, which I have placed in a nearfield location next to my viewing chair, has been awesome -- see Post #348, above. The downside to the 3.3 is that it is huge and with the Turbo unit is even bigger. Still, when the explosions on BD movies cause my chair to shake with tight, focused, bass sounds, I tend not to worry about it.

All of the foregoing said, I am as puzzled as other posters have been about your disappointment with your new ULS-15. Most reviews I have seen of the unit have been ecstatic.
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post #371 of 2713 Old 03-24-2010, 02:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SugarmillMan View Post

This has certainly been an education. I've learned more today from reading this thread than I ever knew about sound reproduction. Thank you for your advice!

My crossover settings are at 80. The ULS-15 settings are what Pete suggested to me. I agree that what I probably thought was deep bass was actually midbass. Go figure.

I've been experimenting today with speaker placement have have the ULS in a corner, slightly behind my seating positon. HSU recommended I try hooking up both the ULS and the Polk with a spplitter, which I have done. I'll give it a try for the next 24 hours.

Maybe I will end up purchasing one or two VTF 3's or other ported subs. (and cost is always and consideration.) Do you think I would have good results with mixing one ULS 15 with one VTF-3?

I have mixed ULS's with VTF's with good results. The VTF makes an awesome nearfield sub when used in a end table position, as I have recently found out. That might do more to get you the desired sound. The VTF works very well with corner-loading too. You can't go wrong with any of these subs really.
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post #372 of 2713 Old 03-24-2010, 08:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JHAz View Post

You may just need to let yourself get used to what clean flat bass sounds like.

Excellent point, JHAz! This reminds me of a situation I found myself in several years ago after installing a Velodyne SMS-1 to correct the bass response in my listening area. After achieving a reasonably flat bass response, I was disappointed with the sound. And then I read a quote on the SMS-1 forum: "Flat bass response sounds like NO bass response until you get used to it".

My point is, when changing to a new sub, especially a high-quality one like the ULS-15, you must experiment with placement and settings until it is optomized, and then give yourself several weeks of careful listening to get used to the superior sound.

I recently purchased two ULS-15's, and it took me more than a week of experimenting until I achieved the best placement and integration with the rest of my system. The bass is tight, prodigious, but never overbearing. I could not be more pleased.
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post #373 of 2713 Old 03-24-2010, 08:45 PM
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And it's like going from Vivid/Dynamic TV settings to properly calibrated settings (or at least movie/cinema mode). At first it looks lifeless and dull, then you get used to it and it looks super natural, and Vivid/Dynamic looks like neon and nearly burns your eyes.
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post #374 of 2713 Old 03-25-2010, 04:45 AM
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First welcome Jerry to the club. Glad you are enjoying the new Dual Drive system. What size room are your subs in, if you don't mind me asking?

As you all know this is what I have been saying all along. These subs have such a flat response and are so accurate that you sometimes will think "Where's the Bass?" But when it is present in the signal they do make you go whoa. I was watching Law Abiding Citizen, great movie by the way, and about half way into the movie (I can't remember the scene) there is a bass sweep that goes from 40 Hz to below 20 Hz. I was not expecting it at all and then all of a sudden it happen and I went Whoa! It really added to the suspense of that scene. It happened once, not a whole lot of other bass but it made the movie more memorable. Our own AVS member FilmMixer was the sound engineer on this movie.

Anyway like everyone else is stating you have to listen to these subs for awhile to really come to appreciate them. And also they continue to get better as time goes on. I am approaching a year of ownership now and am still amazed at their performance.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AustinJerry View Post

Excellent point, JHAz! This reminds me of a situation I found myself in several years ago after installing a Velodyne SMS-1 to correct the bass response in my listening area. After achieving a reasonably flat bass response, I was disappointed with the sound. And then I read a quote on the SMS-1 forum: "Flat bass response sounds like NO bass response until you get used to it".

My point is, when changing to a new sub, especially a high-quality one like the ULS-15, you must experiment with placement and settings until it is optomized, and then give yourself several weeks of careful listening to get used to the superior sound.

I recently purchased two ULS-15's, and it took me more than a week of experimenting until I achieved the best placement and integration with the rest of my system. The bass is tight, prodigious, but never overbearing. I could not be more pleased.


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post #375 of 2713 Old 03-25-2010, 06:53 AM
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Originally Posted by cyberbri View Post

And it's like going from Vivid/Dynamic TV settings to properly calibrated settings (or at least movie/cinema mode). At first it looks lifeless and dull, then you get used to it and it looks super natural, and Vivid/Dynamic looks like neon and nearly burns your eyes.

This is exactly what i was gonna say. That statement is so very true. I have a Kuro MRP-500M and when i first got it, i was so unimpressed with how it looked. after getting used to it, i can tell you right now, there is no other TV in the world as good as a Kuro currently. It also taught me to recognise the correct color palette and when colors are incorrect. I am currently awaiting my ULS-15 for my 15'x10'x8 room and i know whatever results i have i will be blown away. I currently have an Energy ESW-V8 and i know for a fact what i hear is a LOT of distorted bass so i can attest to the fact that distorted bass does sound much louder and fuller. But i do not like distorted bass, it sounds good to the average person cause its loud but we here all know it shouldnt sound like that. I find (and this is how i describe it) tight bass sounds like when you punch someone in the back. it feels like someone is pounding you in the chest. Its totally different to distorted bass. My wife was watching New Moon last night when i was in the bath and she screamed at me to come out so i could hear a scene. she was so blown away by it she had to call me out (i have her into audio now....first it was video when we got the Kuro). It was the scene where Jacob was fighting the other dude in wolf form. The effects sounding great but the bass was too boomy but all that was going through my mind was "In a few weeks she will be so amazed by what she will be hearing, it aint funny". Dont we all love this hobby .
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post #376 of 2713 Old 03-25-2010, 07:45 AM
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I often set my sub higher than reference or where auto calibration sets it at. It's a matter of taste.
When you say you were underwhelmed did you manage to bottom out the woofer or clip the amp?
If you haven't found the "bottom" of the sub, I wouldnt determine that's its not enough.

Although 80hz is standard there are guys who run it at 60 or at 100.
It's all about what sounds.good to you.

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post #377 of 2713 Old 03-25-2010, 08:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SugarmillMan View Post

This has certainly been an education. I've learned more today from reading this thread than I ever knew about sound reproduction. Thank you for your advice!

My crossover settings are at 80. The ULS-15 settings are what Pete suggested to me. I agree that what I probably thought was deep bass was actually midbass. Go figure.

I've been experimenting today with speaker placement have have the ULS in a corner, slightly behind my seating positon. HSU recommended I try hooking up both the ULS and the Polk with a spplitter, which I have done. I'll give it a try for the next 24 hours.

Maybe I will end up purchasing one or two VTF 3's or other ported subs. (and cost is always and consideration.) Do you think I would have good results with mixing one ULS 15 with one VTF-3?

Hi,
I know that you are missing the distortion SPL/midbass emphasis of your past sub..But the ULS is a potent sub.It is really close, SPL wise, to the VTF-3 Mk3 at most freqs, it only sounds cleaner, which is why people get confused with its SPL...

At the volume knob on the ULS-15...At what time is it dialed?
11o'clock? 12?
Maybe you are in need of an MBM...To get that midbass slam you are used to....

Cacimar Hernandez
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post #378 of 2713 Old 03-25-2010, 10:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hometheatergeek View Post

First welcome Jerry to the club. Glad you are enjoying the new Dual Drive system. What size room are your subs in, if you don't mind me asking?

HTG, my listening area is a difficult one. The room is 20' across the front, 16' on two sides, and then open in the rear to the rest of the ground floor of my home, roughly 1,000 sq ft downstairs. With this unusual shape, it took a while to find the sweet spot for the bass.

Another thing to consider is the source material. Since getting the ULS-15's, I have been searching through my collection of Redbook CD's, SACD's, DVD Audio's and Blu-Rays looking for good bass response tests. You find good material in the strangest places. Some recent finds:

- Sara McLachlan, Surfacing, especially the second track
- Natalie Merchant, Tigerlily DVD-Audio, multiple tracks
- John Mayer, Live in LA Blu-Ray, the "fulll band" tracks in lossless audio (amazing)
- Lucinda Williams, Essence and West, multiple tracks (sublime)
- The Hurt Locker, Blu-Ray, any scene with mortars (hold on to your seat!)

Enjoy!
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post #379 of 2713 Old 03-25-2010, 10:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AustinJerry View Post

HTG, my listening area is a difficult one. The room is 20' across the front, 16' on two sides, and then open in the rear to the rest of the ground floor of my home, roughly 1,000 sq ft downstairs. With this unusual shape, it took a while to find the sweet spot for the bass.

Another thing to consider is the source material. Since getting the ULS-15's, I have been searching through my collection of Redbook CD's, SACD's, DVD Audio's and Blu-Rays looking for good bass response tests. You find good material in the strangest places. Some recent finds:

- Sara McLachlan, Surfacing, especially the second track
- Natalie Merchant, Tigerlily DVD-Audio, multiple tracks
- John Mayer, Live in LA Blu-Ray, the "fulll band" tracks in lossless audio (amazing)
- Lucinda Williams, Essence and West, multiple tracks (sublime)
- The Hurt Locker, Blu-Ray, any scene with mortars (hold on to your seat!)

Enjoy!

Well that is a big area. My area is 20x18x23' high. 8300^3 for just the listening area. Open to the Kitchen, foyer, stairwell to third floor, which actually has a balcony so well over 12,000^3. And yet I get pressurization with all four subs playing. It took me 3 weekends of fiddling to get it right.

You are right about searching for music and movies to find the ones with the strongest bass information. I have recommended this before but one of the best DVD concerts that make these subs shine is the "Farewell Tour One Live from Melbourne" from the Eagles. Don Henley and his assistant pounding on two drum sets at the same time, Timothy B. Schmit with his bass riffs and Joe Walsh playing his guitar is just over the top. Disc one is the Eagles playing the Eagles' songs and Disc 2 is the Eagles playing some of the solo songs done by Don "All She Want's to do is Dance" and the best song on the DVDs is "Dirty Laundry". Then there's Joe Walsh's "Rocky Mountain High" Keep searching and your find more.

What made you decide to get the ULS-15s? Did you get one of the special veneers? My walnut veneer is awesome, worth the extra 200 dollars.

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post #380 of 2713 Old 03-25-2010, 02:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hometheatergeek View Post

What made you decide to get the ULS-15s? Did you get one of the special veneers? My walnut veneer is awesome, worth the extra 200 dollars.

I purchased the Walnut finish as well--it's very nice. I upgraded from 2xTN1220HO's, which were about 12 years old. I became a little weary of the tube design, plus I wanted to try an enclosed design vs. the ported design of the 1220's. Having been quite happy with Hsu products, the ULS-15's seemed to be a good choice. And like I said before, I couldn't be happier!
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post #381 of 2713 Old 03-25-2010, 05:37 PM
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After reading SugarmillMan comments I was thinking of my setup.
I use to have 2 Outlaw audio LFM1 subs and a Def Tech PF15TL, when I replaced all those subs with 4 ULS15s...I thought the bass was lacking with the ULS's.
What I really found out after playing with them for a while was...that the other subs were very peaky in given frequency's....so it sounded "Louder" - "Better"...but after dialing the ULSs and getting use to the sound of flatter responding sub...all I can say is WOW....and am feeling and hearing notes I never noticed before.... These subs have added a whole new layer to the sound and my movie experience.

By the way my room is 14'7" wide x 25' long with 9' ceilings..that is 3375CuFt
And these subs never strain to fill the room

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post #382 of 2713 Old 03-25-2010, 07:51 PM
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AustinJerry;

Tell me more about he differences between the ULS-15's and TN1220's please. I have a pair of TN1220's I haven't used in a long time and will be putting the system back together in a new house shortly. I was thinking I may need to upgrade the subs to something more modern. Is it worth the big $$?
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post #383 of 2713 Old 03-26-2010, 10:29 AM
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Originally Posted by rah50 View Post

AustinJerry;

Tell me more about he differences between the ULS-15's and TN1220's please. I have a pair of TN1220's I haven't used in a long time and will be putting the system back together in a new house shortly. I was thinking I may need to upgrade the subs to something more modern. Is it worth the big $$?

First of all, the TN1220HO's are very good subs, so I highly recommend you set them up again and conduct some listening tests before you retire them.

My reasons for upgrading are several. First of all, the TN1220's were over twelve years old. While a speaker's age doesn't necessarily make it obsolete, I am a firm believer that technology continues to advance, and that anything you buy today will have benefited from continuous improvement. Second, I have been curious to compare the overall sound quality of a sealed design vs. a ported design. There are some who feel the sealed design produces output more closely coupled with the other speakers in a system. And finally, I have become somewhat weary of the form factor of the 1220's--too tall and top-heavy.

Having said that, both the 1220's and the ULS-15 produce excellent bass, as long as you set them up carefully. After I have had the ULS-15's for 12 years, I'll tell you which ones I liked better!

Good luck!
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post #384 of 2713 Old 03-26-2010, 01:56 PM
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The TN1220HO is still a terrific design. In fact, Hsu is bringing it back by popular demand.
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post #385 of 2713 Old 03-26-2010, 02:45 PM
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Originally Posted by shadyJ View Post

The TN1220HO is still a terrific design. In fact, Hsu is bringing it back by popular demand.

In Pete's post on the Hsu site, to which you linked in your post, he also mentioned the long discontinued HRSW line. They were Dr. Hsu's first models, introduced in the early '90s and came with either 10 or 12 inch drivers. Unlike the TN1220HOs, the HRSWs are definitely not being reintroduced.

I had two HRSW10s, which I bought in the early '90s and did not replace until I got a VTF3.3 Turbo in 2008. The HRSW10s finally got so old that the cones on the drivers ruptured, so I thought that it was time to move up. Best move I ever made.
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post #386 of 2713 Old 03-27-2010, 12:22 PM
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Here ya go:


A Nice Radio Station with Great Music. For Those That Like That Sort of Thing: RadioParadise.com

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post #387 of 2713 Old 03-28-2010, 05:31 AM
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thats a great deal.....if i had to buy that dual drive now and not use it (i.e leave it in the box) for about 5 years, would they work then? or would they become defective because they werent used for so long?
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post #388 of 2713 Old 03-28-2010, 07:07 AM
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Kimwyn, it wouldn't make much sense to do that now. The ULS didn't exist 5 years ago, and, chances are, there will be better models out 5 years from now which will beat the performance for the same price, like say, maybe a ULS mk2. At the rate at which technology is moving, the only sensible thing to do is to be able to use whatever subwoofer you get the moment you use it. Besides that, the electronics warranty will have expired on the ULS in 5 years.
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post #389 of 2713 Old 03-28-2010, 07:20 AM
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thanks shadyj, makes a lot of sense.
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post #390 of 2713 Old 03-28-2010, 05:49 PM
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I'm not sure the wife will let me put the TN1220's in the new house! And I'd really rather not have to pack them for the trip across country.

The Dual Drive special at $1995 is VERY tempting.

Thanks
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