Originally Posted by bear123
First, lets dispel a myth. I don't know where this comes from, but it sure seems to get repeated a lot. Sealed subs don't necessarily produce "tighter" bass than ported subs. The truth is, equivalent quality ported and sealed subs will sound just as good on music. I think the misconception occurs because when one is considering a subwoofer for music only, sealed is the natural choice. Not because they are better, tighter, crisper, more detailed, or any other false adjective, but because the larger size of a ported sub which provides much higher output in the 16-30 Hz region for movies, is not needed for a music only sub. So it is not that sealed are better for music, its that ported have an unnecessary output advantage in a lower octave, at the cost of larger size and higher price.
bear: Is it really a myth? This thought pattern came from many professional reviewers, some as long as a decade ago or more. It came from reviewers who's number one concern is with music, and usually stereo and not home theater. Obviously, the music one plays will indeed matter. It's a lot different from having parties with music going, or music as a background than it is with critical listening. These reviewers critically listen to their music and give their thoughts on what a subwoofer gives, takes away or over enhances. It may indeed be minute to most people, but to them it is important. Music is extremely personal, unlike the LFE from movies. There is also a myth that music rarely if ever goes very deep. In most cases, that is correct, but even a piano is cable of 27 Hz. Pipe organs capable of 16 Hz, and Synthesizers even lower. Again, it depends upon one's catalog of music and what one wants a subwoofer to do for them.
That being said, subwoofers have changed over the years. Inexpensive ported subs gave a lot of bang for the buck. In today's era of high quality sealed and ported designs, the differences have diminished. However, if I can hear a distinct difference between high quality sealed subs (I've auditioned several, and three in my home), I suspect I could hear a difference between ported subs as well. That also indicates to me that I should be able to discern differences between ported and sealed designs. I'm not saying which I may prefer, or even how distinct the differences would be, but I have little doubt there would be differences.
Just my two cents.