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post #1 of 848 Old 01-14-2012, 09:14 AM - Thread Starter
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This thread has been created to document the 2012 Blind Subwoofer Shootout in Kansas City Missouri hosted on Jan 14, 2012.

The goal of this event was to have multiple subwoofer enthusiasts blind audition quality and relevant subwoofer pairs. Subjective comments were collected before revealing results to discover if previous enthusiasts' previous subwoofer meets of past have had built in biases that are not present in blind auditioning. Each subwoofer auditioned was required to demoed in pairs. We hoped to explore several questions listed below -- among others.
1) Can the difference between ported and sealed be detected in blind auditions?
2) Do enthusiasts favor one type of subwoofer design (ported, sealed, horn) over another in blind auditions for music vs. movies?
3) Are all subwoofer brand and design biases based on increasing cost effectively neutralized if auditioners don't know know which particular sub is being auditioned and voted on? Basically at a certain point are all subwoofers created equal?
4) Do capable sealed subwoofers with the ability to produce powerful subsonic make a recognizably positive impression on voting scores during blind audition?

The contenders:

4 sealed subwoofers
Chase Home Theater 18.T
JTR Cap S
Seaton Submersive
MFW-15 DIY Dual opposed

2 ported subwoofers
HSU VTF-15H
JTR Captivator Pro

1 horn
JTR Orbit Shifter

Commence reading! and enjoy!

-Jonathan
Archaea

Get the gory details of planning this thing here - oh and read the last few pages for some parrallel discussion with this thread before the planning thread died down.
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1369860

Shown in this video is the basic procedures of the day -


Shown in this album are some of the pics from the meet.
http://s1191.photobucket.com/albums/...woofer%20Meet/

Seating Chart for Blind Voters - (gentlemen in parenthesis did not score by choice, or because they could only attend a partial day)
Each voting attendees original scanned score sheet was uploaded on page 2 of this thread or it can also be found on the hyperlink by clicking the user's forum handle in the seating chart list immediately below.

Front Row
Left Side - (Blaine), kwarny, HuskerOmaha, stitch1, wulfcomp, wlelandj - Right Side

Back Row
Left Side - (Scott), thebuckaman, desertdome, jedimastergrant, carp, (Bezlar) - Right Side

EDIT: At request - to help show how each of these seats and thus their owner's votes were affected by their seat's unique frequency reponse please see the following post. I retested the seating positions post meet with my Captivator Pros to provide some guidance on interpreting blind voters' subjective comments, as the original graphs captured for each sub in post # 3 are simply an average of all 12 seats and do NOT represent what each seat heard. To determine what each voter heard you'd need to take the overall average and meld it with the particular seat to come up with a somewhat equitable idea of the frequency response.
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...0#post21532240


Setup/Teardown
Archaea, Blain, Jeff, Luke Kamp, Mark, Tesseract67

Measurements
Archaea, Blain, Luke Kamp, Tesseract67

Score Compilations
Archaea and Luke Kamp - All scoresheets scanned and posted for transparancy to our readers.

Media Tracks Auditioned on each Sub Setup -

Music Track List - (Auditioned at -10 Onkyo TX-NR1007 MLV)
Here is a copy of the tracks (gone through some conversions unfortunately multiple MP3 files trimmed using MPTrim (These are what we auditioned) -> multiple clips combined using winamp nullsoft diskwriter to output a single wav file -> combined to single mp3 file using winamps 3rd party official lame mp3 writer plugin) - Despite the conversions - with this link you can listen to all the tracks we auditioned to get an idea of the music.

http://kiwi6.com/file/vo80ks3b34

Realm of Excursion - 100hz to 20hz sine wave
Rockapella - Shambala
Dallas Wind Symphony - The Vikings
Jars of Clay Love Song for a Savior 08
Diana Krall - Peel Me a Grape
Pete Belasco - Deeper
Rascal Flatts - What Hurts the Most
Cake - Sad Songs and Waltzes
Van - Halen - Hot for Teacher
Counting Crows - Hanging Around
Creed - One
Linkin Park - Frgt
Janet Jackson - Go Deep
Michael Jackson - Thriller
Britney Spears - Breathe on Me
The Black Eyed Peas - Boom Boom Pow
Snoop Doggy Dog - Who Am I
Dr. Dre feat. Xzibit & Eminem - What's the Difference Between Me and You
Mia - Ghetto Superstar
Eminem - Business
Nelly - Country Grammar
Lil Jon & Eastside Boyz - Get Low
Petey Pablo - Freek-A-Leek
Kid Cudi - Day 'n Night
Deadmau5 - Ghost N Stuff
Flux Pavillion - Got 2 Know
Example - Kickstarts (Bar 9 Remix)
Bassotronics - Bass, I Love You

Movie Track List - (Auditioned at -10 Onkyo TX-NR1007 MLV)
Animusic - Last Track with the deep bass
BattleField LA - Ship Thrusters
Book of Eli - Town Square Gunfight
Dolby Digital - Canyon trailer
Dolby Digital - Rain trailer
Drumline - final faceoff
Flight of the Phoenix - initial crash scene
How to Train your Dragon - megadragon bursts through cliff
Hulk - Cop Car Smash - comes out of ground, shockwave, smashes car
Hulk - Sonic Cannon
Iron Man - Jericho Missle
John Mayor Song - Waiting for the World to Change
Kung Foo Panda - Skadoosh scene
Master and Commander - Cannons in ship battle
Matrix Revolutions - Architect voice
Red Cliff - Drum Beats during ship battle scene
Star Wars - Pod Race warmup
Terminator Salvataion - Robot destroys shed
THX - Amazing Life Trailer
Titan AE - Ice Field
Transformers 3 - Bumblebee Highway Flip
Tron Legacy - entering club scene
War of the Worlds - Pod emerges

Increased volume to -4 on Onkyo TX-NR1007 MLV on the following two clips for each audition(all other clips previous were listened to at -10MLV)
Black Hawk Down - Helicopter Rotor Subsonics
U-571 - Depth Charges
boe and Bunga99 like this.

"Without subs it's just background music - with subs it's the main event!"
Archaea's Theatre Room
2011 KC Sub Shootout
2012 KC Blind Sub Shootout
My Subwoofer Recommendations by Pricepoint
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post #2 of 848 Old 01-14-2012, 09:15 AM - Thread Starter
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Archaea's post meet commentary and shootout results:

Please note - this commentary and susequent commentary including meet results was only provided post event, and post subjective commentary deposition by all blind voters. We didn't want the actual published identity results and overall group ranking to affect anyone's subjective commentary.

I'll be as absolutely transparent as possible on every single aspect of this meet. To my knowledge we didn't make a single uncorrected mistake the entire day - which is both exciting and exceptional! A big thanks to Luke Kamp and Tesseract67 for their help along with a fellow, Blain I believe? - who attended with Jeff. Thanks too to Jeff and Mark for helping us move these massive subs around all day. Most every entry was over 100lbs and some were ~ 200lbs. Jeff and Mark, as vendors did a good job of staying out of the process. They were observers and were willing to advise if anything looked inconsistent, or we asked for input -- but only if asked. They never said "this isn't right - let's do it again", or tried to promote their product in any unfair advantage. This is true even to the point of the Seaton Submersive HP, and the new premiering Captivator Sealed not having the best frequency response graphs of the day, (and them being both slightly displeased at Audysseys attempt to flatten EQ in my room which didn't line up necessarily with "best scenario"). Jeff and Mark were all for letting it ride because all subs were subject to the same procedures. None of the setup volunteers, nor vendors voted, and three people auditioning chose not to vote (either leaving early or wanted to be anonymous), so we had nine consistent all day long voters who sat in the same seat (with tape marks on the floor for accurate chair leg position) listening to every single last clip for every sub. I won't ever list many subjective audio impressions from this meet because I was all over the room. MOSTLY in the back of the room near the "command table" and the response is just terrible back there. Most every sub sounded like a boomy mess in the back of the room behind the HVAC and support beam drop in the ceiling. I bounced around to the front of the room during a couple demo sessions and always enjoyed how much better it sounded, but I wasn't consistently anywhere during the demos so any comparison I would give on these subs woudn't be as much a justice as one of the voting attendees or non voting attendees who sat in one of the 12 demo chairs placed in front of the low ceiling beam (which drops dB in my room by probably at least 6dB). That front side of the room and it's associated chair positions were inside the Audyssey bubble - and that's where the real good, fair, and quality subjective impressions will orgin!

You can read about the specific setup procedures in post #3 - but you have my word that all audition setups were as honest and fair as could possibly be! The setup team caught ourselves on a couple occassions about to make a mistake, but dilligently fixed them before any mistakes were exposed to the listeners. This was done on a few occassions even to the point of running Audyssey again 2x's on a couple of the auditioning subs when after Audyssey calibration the sub channel levels came back at -15 (which is the lowest dB setting Audyssey can set). When this occurred we lowered the sub amp gain and ran Audyssey again, rather than just SPL matching the levels because we couldn't be sure of Audyssey's accuracy on the FR if we just the SPL levels to match 75dB and moved on. Taking the time to rerun was to the meet's benefit in consistency - but ate up precious day listening to Audyssey ping sweeps nearly endlessly. We also caught a mistake near the end where our omnimic FR graphs on one of the subs was very low in relation to the others, we realized we simply had forgotten to turn the receiver to -10 for the sweeps and redid the frequency responses for the sub again. Other times the darn USB cord extension connected to the omnimic (or the omnimic's flimsy micro usb port) would disconnect and we would have to start the omnimic sweeps from the seating position over again. The guys upstairs will tell you that there was a LOT of downtime between subs, but that was because we were very dilligent! Our efforts paid off with a very 'similar', fairly narrow grouping of frequency response groupings from 10-100hz for most subs. There were no absurd outlying FR graphs and that is with 0 correction, 0 dB adjustment of curves, 0 manipulation to any of the average frequncy response curves as gathered in 12 listening position chairs for every sub. The playing field was fairly level - at least as well done as can be accomplished using Audyssey MultiEQ XT w/ Sub EQ on an Onkyo TX-NR1007 receiver.

The results? Anyone who tells you ported vs. sealed is an easy 100% obvious choice in a blind listening test is flat out wrong - at least according to our results. [HuskerOmaha comes to mind! -- though I guess when I point one finger at Greg - three point back at myself]. haha - THOUGH I haven't been proved wrong quite yet since I wasn't auditioning the subs and don't clearly have my name stamped all over a completly inaccurate mass guesswork of a score sheet. --. But kidding aside - Why should I think I have the golden ears! -- unlikely indeed... Seeing how the votes were all over the board I would likely fair no better. For the record however I BELIEVE I like the ported sub sound and still feel I own the best overall subs I've ever heard with the Captivator pair --- yes that's right -- my mind hasn't changed.

Both HSU and JTR Caps - the two ported subs of the day were both run in the 16hz (HSU) and 15hz (Cap Pros) tune respectively. And let me just tell you that the ported vs. sealed argument is pretty much put to rest. Nobody knew much of anything between what was what, and wild guesses abounded for most every sub. It was humerous to those of us collecting the votes after each audition -- I collected all original score forms which I will scan and post here. This was agreed apon in advance with each forum user willing to participate in the voting agreeing that their scoresheet would be public. 9 of 12 auditioners decided they wanted to participate in the blind voting and were willing to have their scoresheets posted. The other three voters either chose to not participate in voting or would only be present for a partial day.

Here's a mini FAQ of commonly raised questions regarding this meet...

Could each sub have sounded better? - probably --- Audyssey probably did some subs a favor and hurt others

Did Audyssey manipulate the 100hz and above FR spectrum to various inequities in listening? - probably - we didn't even measure a full range 10-20K hz spectrum. Audyssey is known to cause variance there - take that for what you will. The subs were calibrated fairly consistently as you'll see. They were all within a few dB, and there was between 45 minutes and 1.5 hours between every single audition. No subs were demoed with less than 45 minutes of time elapsed between them -- this break for each sub setup allowed for minor dB level changes as configured by Audyssey to be less impactful. IE no subs were A/B'ed immediately after each other. Someone might suggest that the loudest sub would clearly win the day or the sub with the flattest EQ would dominate - that was not the case. The flattest average frequency response was owned by the MFW-15 DIY Dual opposed by far when averaged over 12 seats. That may be because it was the only setup run off a single sub out. Highest peak spl belonged to Cap Pros and Orbit Shifters. (post # 3 contains FR and SPL numbers from meet day) All three of these setups scored midpack.

Could each sub have been manually EQ's better? Or shouldn't you have used REW + EQ? - I'm sure, there are better alternatives. We lacked the REW knowledge to pull off the REW + EQ (except the vendors and desertdome - and desertdome wanted to blind audition). Furthermore Audyssey is much more relaxed than the extra stress that Michael was under at the HuskerOmaha meet in 2011 running REW + EQ on each sub. In the end Audyssey curves were banded to look very similar, SPL readings line up with expected capbility, and there are no major outliers on anything IMO. LOTS of people run Audyssey in their home and these results may are at least standardized to a tool that many would have access to. The Audyssey results in another room than mine would obviously vary some -- but grip or complain - it's the path we chose and if you don't like how we did it. Feel free to stop reading here because you won't care about anything else anyone has to say.

Did we have a 100% blind vote from the audience? - I do believe so! As in none of the voting auditioners knew at any point (for absolute certain - they all had their guesses) what sub was playing! We hid amps, speaker wires, and subs as best we could. Take a look at the pictures - I think we made it as blind as was possible within a single day!!! It was fun to see and there was a bit of anxiety building for the sub owners and prospective sub owners of the group! The single exception I think on this is that stitch1 helped me pick audition material and heard the Inuke Amp cut out a couple times in our demo session and so he recognized that issue when it occurred in the blind meet. Following the meet he told me he only KNEW one sub and that was the reason why. Some of the owners came up to me and said they thought they recognized their own subs - they were right in some cases and wrong in others. I neither confirmed nor denied anything to anyone during the blind meet, and neither did the rest of the setup team to my knowledge. It was truly as blind as you could do outside of a laboratory setting.

What are your room dimmensions? - ~ 20 foot wide by about 25 foot deep by about 7 foot tall. All measurements rounded down. My room is not sealed to the rest of the house. It sits on concrete and is a walk out basement. Two of the four walls in the listening area are concrete, the other two walls are the rear walk out basement door, and the door to the rest of the basement. There are hvac funance room HVAC grills 18" x2 that allow air to escape and the basement is open to the upstairs through a folding door. My house is small, ~1000 cubic foot per foor but the bass is certainly not restricted by my theater room's dimmensions. I also have a very difficult HVAC and support beam that runs the width of my room and robs SPL and clean sound quality in the rear of the room. The auditioners were all thus placed in front of the support beam/hvac. As noted in the 2011 subwoofer meet and subsequent testing in my room - I have little to no room gain as compared to outdoor measurements taken by Ricci and others. (here is a thread where my room's lack of boundary gain is discussed - http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...6#post21655206)

Sub X didn't preform as well as I expected - did you do any retesting to see what happened?
It can be argued that the two subs running on the INuke DSP3000 - the JTR Captivator Pros and the CHT 18.1 subs did not preform as best they could. The INuke DSP 3000 amp was overloaded and power cycled 3 times during the Captivator audition during the most intense scenes. The INuke amp was also used on the CHT 18.1 subs with a boost at 20hz, to level the FR graph prior audyssey - specifics are in the #3 post. The CHT subs encountered hard clipping during the some of the most intense movie material(no power cycling), but I do not believe the amp contributed to any issues during the music material for either sub as demonstrated based on further testing. The clip lights did not blink on the amp during the music material for either sub over the range of music material. For the record the clip limiter was NOT engaged with the INuke DSP amp. The INuke amp may have caused both of these competitors a bit in its shortcomings, but it also very much aided them in acheiving a much flatter frequency response graph through the employment of the integrated DSP which was configured and saved for both the Cap Pros and the CHT subs prior the blind meet. The DSP settings and prior Audyssey graphs for both Cap PRO and 18.1 are provided in post #3. The HSU VTF-15H may not have been run in the most favorable EQ setting because we were looking to use the 16hz tune in an unforgiving room to more closely match the sealed subs response - potentially limiting the HSU's available headroom. These are just points of note, but do not disqualify the results. Some of the other subs also had artifacts of the Audyssey setup process standardized for all subs. For instance the Cap sealed showed a significant and unique dip in comparison to the other subs at 30hz - so nobody will say our testing was completely without variables, but we did follow a very standardized procedure in setup and to my knowledge made absolutely no mistakes or deviations in our agreed upon procedures. We did some retesting on Sunday January 15 with the CHT and HSU subs and we (Tesseract67 and Luke Kamp) documented all the testing data in following posts in this very thread. Nothing appeared out of the ordinary during the retesting. To put it bluntly the subs ranked as they did because that's the way they preformed under identical setup conditions using standardized Audyssey MultiEQ XT settings. The scores realized were done so in blind testing with nine enthusiasts' opinions voiced. The INuke amp issues should not be discounted as a setup errors, Both Cap Pro and CHT were auditioned before the meet and the issues which occurred during the Saturday blind testing were recognized in previous testing Wednesday, Jan 6, for the Cap Pros and Friday, Jan 13, for the CHT subs and thus were to be expected by the subwoofer owners. There is some retest data discussion, observations, and frequency response charts available from our additional time spent on Sunday January 15th with the HSU and CHT. The retest data may provide some indication of what Audyssey did (or didn't do) to each of these sub's frequency response. This information is shortcutted via the following links
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...7#post21500997
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...3#post21501243
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...0#post21501350
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...5#post21503115
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...4#post21503434
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...0#post21503570
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...4#post21503774
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...1#post21504531
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...8#post21505168
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...5#post21509465
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...8#post21509808
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...5#post21511155
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...3#post21514253
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...8#post21528268
and finally - most importantly - Sunday January 15 retest data for both HSU and CHT.
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...7#post21515107


Scoring was based on a simple 1-3 scale.
1 was OK
2 was Great
3 was Fantastic
Each sub's scoring was intended to be on it's own merit, not as compared to the other subs.
The maximum possible individual voter score for music was 12 provided a 3 score was given by the voter in each of four judging categories - smoothness, depth, accuracy, pleasure/fun
The maximum possible invididual voter score for movies was 75 based on the potential for a 3 score to be given for every single movie demo clip. Each clip was rated 1-3 individually.

To come up with the overall rankings all blind voters scores were totalled as you see in the following chart.

Without further ado

HERE'S HOW THE SCORES FELL!


Here is my subjective opinion on what the scores actually mean...
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...3#post21655573

Nube compiled the subjective comment results and pm'ed them to me for easy comparison of subjective comments. To see this post outside of the code context click the following hyperlink.
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...9#post21501339
Code:
Sub A:  Dual HSU VTF-15H
Music Score:  72 (6th place)
Movie Score:  365 (6th place)
Quote:
Originally Posted by stitch1 View Post Sub A: My score shows it to be smooth accurate lacking a bit in depth and was “great” for music. I didn't love this sub. I may have even scored it a bit higher then I would have it it wasn't the 1st sub I heard. The only clip I gave it a fantastic was the john mayor song as I felt it represented the kick drum and bass guitar well. Again I think I may have over rated this sub at 41 overall. I do believe this is a sealed box.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HuskerOmaha View Post Music/Movies Score (/) Sub A: (8/42) I wrote that I thought I could feel BHD on movies a bit. Someone said there is a 20hz and a 8hz? on speclab of this. I wonder if we ever felt the 8hz. I couldn’t feel anything on Vikings (Poop and Pipes from the Omaha GTG;)). Initially I thought maybe these were the Caps. I wrote tons of guesses through the night, but you can’t really finalize WHICH SUB you think it is until you have heard them all. Guessing seems futile. I thought this sub was overall OK for movies. Nothing really wowed me, nothing sounded terrible. I was kidding on my sheet about chuffing. I didn’t hear any all night, but at the levels we were listening (115-120 Hz average?) in my seat…how could you. Bunk. I initially voted this as ported, but after hearing the rest, could be a lower sealed sub. The output didn’t appear to match that of several others, leading me to think of them as smaller drivers or less displacement per science. I’m sure I’m an idiot on this one. Guesses (in order of my fake confidence): 1) HSU, 2) Cap Pro

Quote:
Originally Posted by thebuckaman View Post Sub A- I thought this sub sounded ok for music and movies. It didn't seem to do anything special but sounded fine for most of the music movie clips. Going with HSU

Quote:
Originally Posted by carp View Post Sub A: Now were talking. Much better than the Klipsh. The music clips were much clearer and punchier and the bass didn't linger. One of the best subs of the day.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jedimastergrant View Post Sub A was a step up from the Klipsch in extension and every other characteristic especially for music, but I was not blown away at any point with the movie clips. I found myself hoping that there were much better subs in our future and that was indeed the case. I still felt it was a solid sub and I did not feel like it did anything wrong. Nor did I think any of the subs ever really put out a bad sound.

Quote:
Originally Posted by desertdome View Post Sub A - These subs were with Sub d and the Klipsch in not sounding very accurate. Many notes were smeared together and the music just didn't seem enjoyable. For movies they performed much better and I had many ok to great ratings with even 4 fantastic ratings. I indicated on my score sheet that it sounded the best with the Book of Eli, Drumline, Iron Man, and Matrix Revolution clips.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wlelandj View Post Sub A: For music, while I found it smooth and accurate with good depth, it just seemed subdued hence the lower "fun" rating. It did well on the lower end of the spectrum, but thought it lacked punch higher up. (CapS?)

Quote:
Originally Posted by kwarny View Post Sub A - I gave this mostly 1s and some 2s. I disliked this for music. It sounded inconsistent throughout the frequency range and somewhat bloated but much cleaner than the Klipsch. It was okay for movies but lacked the impact or tightness. I guessed ported. It sounded like the JTR Cap Pros from the Omaha GTG.

Sub B:  Dual JTR Captivator Pro + Inuke DSP3000
Music Score:  93 (3rd place)
Movie Score:  504 (4th place)
Quote:
Originally Posted by stitch1 View Post Sub B: As I said I had only heard one of these subs before and I am 99.99% sure this was the sub I had heard. I am wiling to say this was one of my favorite subs of the night. It may not seem that way in my score. I would love to own a sub like this. It was smooth it was accurate and played deep with music. I gave it and overall score of 66. I really liked this sub so instead of gushing over it. I'll just tell you what I didn't like about it. I scored it ok on the John Mayor clip as it just didn't really sound that good to me. I felt the Skadoosh could have been better and I didn't think it handled black hawk down as well as it could have. Personal opinion I feel it was a fantastic sub. BTW I said it is Ported as it is.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HuskerOmaha View Post Sub B: (12/51) This thing dominated music. I really hope it isn’t the Cap Pros because I’m going to be the butt of jokes and feeling stupid for months until Archaea forgets I say this (he won’t). These were BY FAR the best to me for music. Destroyed the music. Perfect. Articulate. Fun. Of course I think they are sealed, because sealed subs are the BEST FOR MUSIC, right? Man, I hope I’m right on at least that. Did I mention these absolutely "beast mode" the music? :) The reason I feel these may be the caps or ported, was during the movie sections, I felt TONS of air movement by my legs. I felt these did pretty solid overall. There was a weird part of BHD where the bass cut out for a few seconds. I looked at Kwarny during it to my left and he noted it too. Amp issues? They were a little boomy at times, but overall very nice. I like these. What are they. Archaea is so mean. Guesses: (IOOMFC): 1) Submersive HP, 2) Cap S

Quote:
Originally Posted by thebuckaman View Post Sub B- I liked this sub a lot. There was some very clean reinforcement filling the rooms. Nice, clean, and deep. SMOOTH-CLEAN. Going with Seaton

Quote:
Originally Posted by carp View Post Sub B: Not as good. Other than the Klipsch and sub D, this was my least favorite. Not bad on music but didn't seem as tight.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jedimastergrant View Post Sub B was a step up from A in extension and accuracy for music. I felt like I was finally able to hear what the music bass tracks really sound like with a great sub. An even bigger step up was how it handled the movie clips. At that point I was glad I had come. More output, extension, and more grins.

Quote:
Originally Posted by desertdome View Post Sub B - These were my favorite subs overall. They were extremely accurate and dynamic. I really liked it for music and it performed well for most movies. It seemed like it didn't extend as deep and lacked output on the Black Hawk Down clip. Although the scoring is the same for music as G and similar to a few others, I felt these subs were were completely at a different level for music. The double bass in Diana Krall's Peel Me a Grape sounded the most real on these subs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wlelandj View Post Sub B: I really liked this sub, very smooth and accurate, with excellent low freq. output. It was a really fun sub and in retrospect probably should have gotten a 3 in the "fun" factor rather than the 2 I gave. This sub was "great" down the board with some "fantastics". I think what kept it from being the top, was that, in my opinion, it was a bit too forward in the upper bass region. (Too much of a good thing?) This sub seemed to have a lot of headroom which is why I'm guessing OS? I could certainly see myself with this sub and, with it's headroom and some tweaking, would probably be all I would ever need barring winning the lotto and building an outrageously large HT. (OS)

Quote:
Originally Posted by kwarny View Post Sub B - I gave it mostly 2s and a few 1s. It sounded much better on music. It was much cleaner sounded but I wish it would of had a little less overhang on music. I enjoyed it for movies since it sounded cleaner and restored the missing impact I have not heard yet. The one flaw noted was the lack of extension and deep output. BHD was major downer. I guessed it was a sealed sub. It had a familiar sound to me also from the Omaha GTG.

Sub C:  Dual Seaton Submersive HP
Music Score:  98 (1st place)
Movie Score:  512 (2nd place)
Quote:
Originally Posted by stitch1 View Post Sub C: Nothing really jumped out at me about sub C. I didn't have any notes on it. I thought it was a pretty good sounding sealed sub that played both loud and deep. It was good with music but didn't wow me on the movie clips. I did give it some “fantastic” points as it did play these clips with authority. Overall it was pretty clean but it just sounded a bit different then what I would have liked. Again I think it was a sealed sub.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HuskerOmaha View Post Sub C: (10/58) I was really happy with these. I felt they had great depth (more output?) on music and were fun. Again, felt like a sealed sound during music. Music is really the thing I felt I could qualify differences on with all of the subs, the movies I was clutching in the dark for something. During movies, I have no f@#$#@ clue what was playing. I can’t figure out why. It had the highest output to this point on HTTYD, and the Hulk had the nice shock wave on the cop car scene where they launch into each other and break the marquee on the theater. Nice. Are these our DIY? Guesses (IOOMFC): 1) Dual Opposed MFW-15

Quote:
Originally Posted by thebuckaman View Post Sub C-More impact than B for me on movies. I liked it for music as well. Impact was nice. Guessing JTR Cap Pro

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Originally Posted by carp View Post Sub C: My favorite on music and awesome for movies too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jedimastergrant View Post Sub C was the most distinct of the day for me. It sounded the most different and I am not sure if that was what made it my favorite but there you go. It had noticeably more output across everything which influenced me as well. It was really accurate and smooth with lots of output down to the bottom of the sweep that went down to 20 Hz. It had a very punchy feel to it and great dynamics. I felt as though I could hear more distinctly the individual bass notes. The output and shaking of pants and a bit of pressurization effect made it my favorite by a long shot for movies. Gunshots had a real pop to them. I could go on and on about this one. It is the sub I would have taken home had the subs identity been revealed to us after the tests.

Quote:
Originally Posted by desertdome View Post Sub C - This sub was more accurate that A. It extended deeper and had better dynamics with some of the movie clips. I thought it sounded quite good on music, but coming right after B it didn't sound as accurate. It had the most low output on Bass I Love you and was shaking the projector. This sub was the biggest inigma in that it performed fantastic with some clips, but was just ok with other clips. It seems like it has the potential to sound better with a little more setup or EQ. It sounded fantastic on Black Hawk Down, Master and Commander, Hulk Sonic Cannons, Book of Eli Gunfight, Iron Man Jericho, and U571. However, I rated it as just Ok for War of the Worlds. I thought it was lacking in the low bass on War of the Worlds. It was one of three subs (along with B and G) that had the best dynamics on the Book of Eli Gun Fight clip.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wlelandj View Post Sub C: This was the gem for me. Tops across the board in music and many "fantastics" in movies. Hearing Sub B actually helped me grade this one. While it didn't have the output of Sub B, it had more than enough. Where Sub B was forward in the upper bass region Sub C was more balanced in my opinion. It was those improvements that helped push it to the top. (SubM?)

Quote:
Originally Posted by kwarny View Post Sub C - This sub was alright. It was somewhat bloated on music but the notes seemed louder. I would of rated it higher for movies due to the perceived extra output but the extra decay kind of killed it for me. It was the first sub to get 3s (hulk for fun, and BHD for extension). I guessed sealed. It also sounded familiar to me from the Omaha GTG.

Sub D:  Dual CHT SS-18.1 + Inuke DSP3000
Music Score:  60 (7th place)
Movie Score:  361 (7th place)
Quote:
Originally Posted by stitch1 View Post Sub D: Oh where to start on sub D? It seemed to have the least output of all the subs tested. But I really liked it for what it was. Where some subs wowed me with their output this one was completely different. We started each test off with a sweep I believe it was 100hz to 20hz. One of the two subs had what sounded like a port chuffing near the end of the sweep. Other then that everything in my mind was telling me this was a really good sealed sub. I was thinking it sub sounds fantastic on music. It was very dynamic. Again overall it was not as loud. Where some subs would just power through a clip this one could really play soft sounds as well as show some meat to its bones on the hotter tracks. I really think this is the HSU sub or a sealed that just didn't have as much power as the other amps. I honestly don't know what all amps were used so that could be the case. But for now I'm not only sticking with ported I am going out on a limb to claim it as an HSU even though I had never even seen an HSU product in person before.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HuskerOmaha View Post Sub D: (7/47) These fared the lowest on the music to me. I felt their depth was the weakest, but otherwise they were smooth and had a nice sound to them. I say their depth was the worst, because they were the only ones I heard that made a weird sound on the 100-20Hz sine sweep. Around the bottom of the sweep, I heard a mechanical rattle. I thought it came from the sub(s), but maybe it came from something in the room…pretty sure it was the sub though. I thought they blended well with mains, I started getting annoyed with the subs being hotter than the mains in some clips/tracks (SEE DUBstep), but these didn’t overpower. These sounded like my CHTs I just sold in sound imaging…… For movies these were weird. I had a few clips where the sounded great, but also a handful that were just OK. These didn’t have as much output as all of the other setups except the Sub A and the Klipsch they topped to me in my spot. I’m basing my guesses here on my perceived lower output ability in Archaea’s room (vs my GTG). Guesses (IOOMFC): 1) HSU or CHT

Quote:
Originally Posted by thebuckaman View Post Sub D-Not a big fan of this one. Muddy, peaky, and not very impressive overall. I thought Skadoosh scene bottomed it. I'm guessing MFW dual opposed.

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Originally Posted by carp View Post Sub D: I didn't like this sub very much. Music was boring not much impact with movies.

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Originally Posted by jedimastergrant View Post Sub D was a huge let down compared to C. The lack of output was the most disparaging quality. It did nothing wrong but I did not find myself smiling. This may have more to do with the lower perceived output than anything else.

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Originally Posted by desertdome View Post Sub D - This sub was my least favorite. At the levels we were listening at (-10dB) it was distorting the whole time. It wasn't very articulate and and lacked in dynamics. I think we had the levels to high for this sub or maybe Audyssey had done something. At any rate it hurt my ears from the beginning with the 100-20 Hz frequency descent clip.This was the first sub I thought was ported.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wlelandj View Post Sub D: This sub was smooth, with ok accuracy and good depth; a fun sub. It' s that lower accuracy that I think caused it to not rate as high in movies as some of the others. I just didn't feel I was getting the definition between the notes like I did with some of the others.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kwarny View Post Sub D - This was a downer. I hated it for music, especially repetitive beats or music with constant lines. Movies sounded better but it seemed some range of the frequency band missing. It sounded similar to Sub A but with less extension. I guessed horn first but changed it after the next round since I forgot there was another ported sub in the mix.

Sub E:  Dual JTR Captivator Sealed
Music Score:  94 (2nd place)
Movie Score:  518 (1st place)
Quote:
Originally Posted by stitch1 View Post Sub E: When I first heard this sub I really thought it was the orbit shifter and part of me still does. It was the first sub that really hit me in the chest. It sounded good with just about anything we through at it. I rated it second on the point system and Its pretty much a tie for my front 3 anyways. I do think this is either the OS or the Submersive but I could be completely wrong and I would be ok as long as I find out what it is. ;)

Quote:
Originally Posted by HuskerOmaha View Post Sub E: (10/59) This sub cranked in output. I’m sure it was the combination of following D’s lower output ability, and the fact this just had some great output. The music was solid, fun, but I thought these sounded a bit hollow on some tracks like my F-20s have sounded. Horn? I’m sure not because I’m a bad guesser. The 100-20 Hz sound wave was freaking intense. Maybe the loudest of the night. Where this really shined was the movie tracks. Output in spades. I kept thinking these were the Orbit Shifters and I might as well stick with that. Guesses (IOOMFC): 1) Orbit Shifter, 2) Submersive HP

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Originally Posted by thebuckaman View Post Sub E- Liked it for music a lot. Movies were also impressive and had good feel and impact but a bit subdued. Guessing Cap-S

Quote:
Originally Posted by carp View Post Sub E: 2nd best for music, liked this sub a lot too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jedimastergrant View Post Sub E was very good overall and sounded the most similar to sub C for me. I liked it better for the movie clips than for music. Not writing a lot on this sub but don’t let that fool you because I enjoyed the heck out of it especially since it came up right after Sub D. I wrote fewer notes as the day went on even though I liked the last three subs very much.

Quote:
Originally Posted by desertdome View Post Sub E - This sub was the lowest scoring of group A. However, like the rest of group A it didn't receive a single "ok" vote from me. All my votes were "great" or "fantastic." It was very accurate, but seemed to lack some in the deepest portions of the clips. I gave it 17 great votes and 8 fantastic votes for movies. For music I scored it fantastic on accuracy, but felt it was a little below Sub B.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wlelandj View Post Sub E: Also a very nice sub, with a fitting overall rank of 3 in both music and movies. It had a similar sound to Sub C, but lacked the output. (DIY?)

Quote:
Originally Posted by kwarny View Post Sub E - This was another setup that disappointed me for music. From the start I thought it had more extension. I was actually surprised that I ended up enjoying these for the HT clips. For HT, every clip seemed mostly clean but with more impact than any other setup. There was still a slight bloat. I ended up guessing horn since I was so baffled.

Sub F:  Dual MFW-15 DIY Dual-Opposed + Modded Dayton SA1000
Music Score:  88 (4th place)
Movie Score:  431 (5th place)
Quote:
Originally Posted by stitch1 View Post Sub F: I don't want to bash a sub but if there was one I didn't care for it was sub F. Thats all I really want to say about it. I'm pretty sure it was sealed and I gave it a very low score of 37. Sorry if you are a fan/owner. From where I was sitting it just didn't do anything for me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HuskerOmaha View Post Sub F: (10/54) I also enjoyed these subs on music. I thought they were the best blending of the night (a bit less output than others, comparable to D feeling?) so I felt they blended well. If that doesn’t make sense, well, Archaea asked for subjective comments. I think they are pointless after last night, but I’ll type random thoughts anyways. :) I felt these were airy, solid, nothing bad but nothing really stood out. I haven’t been guessing ported or sealed have I for a while. Well, that is because I have no freaking idea at this point in the night. I just kept writing sealed or ported based on air movement at my legs. I know, totally bogus reasoning but besides music with B, I had nothing to go on. This <15hz and wanting sealed before the GTG, and now seeing that I can’t tell, may have me selling my Pi-18s and Clone amps if I see the results and decide to be rash. I need the DIYers to keep me keepin’ on!!! Guesses (IOOMFC): 1) Cap Pro, 2) CHT

Quote:
Originally Posted by thebuckaman View Post Sub F- Seemed a little boomy in midbass but played well during music. Movies were also done well, just missing something I couldn't put my finger on. Guessing Chase subs

Quote:
Originally Posted by carp View Post Sub F: 3rd best for music, maybe the best for movies along with sub C I think this is the Caps Pro

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Originally Posted by jedimastergrant View Post Sub F was excellent for music and I almost rated it as high as sub C but changed my mind at the last second. That is how close some of these rankings are and many of the subs sounded similar to me near the end of the meet. Maybe I was starting to get a little bit of listening fatigue or was just tired. I liked these almost as much as Sub E for the movie clips so overall very good performance.

Quote:
Originally Posted by desertdome View Post Sub F - This sub was a very close third behind B & G. On movies it was just 2 points behind Sub B. It lacked a little depth for music, but was very accurate and enjoyable to listen to. Any explosions on the movie clips were extremely quick, but didn't hit quite as hard as E or G. I'm not sure how to describe it, but the explosions seemed to have an immediacy or suddenness to them that almost startled me even though I had already heard the clips by now and knew what to expect.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wlelandj View Post Sub F: This was, to me, a musical sub, hence it's number 2 rating in that category. It's only draw back was it was a little light in the upper bass range. That lack of upper bass, however, helped it in some of the movie clips as it deemphasized some of the more over the top clips with a lot (too much) upper bass in their tracks. (CHT?)

Quote:
Originally Posted by kwarny View Post Sub F - I enjoyed this setup for music and HT. It was probably my second favorite setup for music. It had a slight bloat compared to B. It was equally as good for HT but maybe missing some extension to E and G on BHD from (not much though). I guessed sealed. Compared to it E, the presentation seemed weaker but cleaner.

Sub G:  Dual JTR Orbit Shifter
Music Score:  87 (5th place)
Movie Score:  511 (3rd place)
Quote:
Originally Posted by stitch1 View Post Sub G: Like Sub E it was a beast! I am not sure what had more output E or G but they both were fantastic at giving you that slam in the chest feeling. I was a bit confused when it came time to vote if it was ported or sealed as I really couldn't tell. It was very tight. It played really low but had excellent slam. I voted horn but the more I learned about what subs that were in attendance it got me thinking it was the Submersive.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HuskerOmaha View Post Sub G: (11/60) Last sub of the night. Maybe we saved the best for last?!?!?!??!? Music it was right behind B, the only difference in I felt B had more depth. Man, I really hope B isn’t the Cap Pros. Please. Please. These things rocked. Great way to end the night. I felt these were sealed. Man, I’m a basketcase. These were my favorite on movies by a nose. I was digging what they were putting out. Good output, no faults I heard, many positives. I changed a few of these from my sheet or added a 2nd possibility after Archaea scanned them immediately after the GTG. Archaea will yell at me for that. Whatever, he wasn’t blinded! This is hard to decide what I think. So, what did I learn? Well, if all of my guesses are wrong, than either I should find another hobby, should have saved money to buy either G or B or E based on my observations, or build out my DIY stuff and see how it compares at a future GTG? Guesses (IOOMFC): 1) Cap S

Quote:
Originally Posted by thebuckaman View Post Sub G- Boom! These seemed to really do well on music and offered a good sounding bass drum on the John Mayer clip I noted. My favorite on movies. Good impact and really liked the Hulk sonic cannon scene. JTR OS is my guess.

Quote:
Originally Posted by carp View Post Sub G: Solid sub, I was beat by this time and can't remember much specifics.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jedimastergrant View Post Sub G was one that I felt did not draw attention to itself at first but maybe I mean that in a good way. I thought it was good for music but lacked a little punch. Again, for some people you might want a sub that blends in very well and does not draw attention. As we moved on to the movie clips the sub really shined and I became more and more impressed with it. I simply loved this sub for movie clips and at this point it took quite a bit to get my attention after a full day of listening to very high quality subs. Great extension with lots of pant flapping capability.

Quote:
Originally Posted by desertdome View Post Sub G - These subs actually scored the highest for me on movies, but I chose B as my favorite due to its music accuracy. Actually my music score tied with B on these subs and revealed a limitation in that the scoring for music didn't allow me to delineate the preference I had for B. These sounded different on movies than B (and all other subs) and seemed to have the greatest dynamics and variations in texture during the movie clips. It immersed me in the action more than any of the other subs. Every vibration, explosion, bang, thump, boom, or even the constant bass was beautifully rendered. This sub is the only one to receive all Fantastic scores from me for movies. I had given many other Fantastic ratings, but this sub was like going from 16 to 24 bit color. There was just more resolution.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wlelandj View Post Sub G: This sub sounded similar to Sub D, but with less output, which lowered the fun factor. Like sub D, I feel it's lower accuracy score hurt it in some of the movie clips with a lot of information going on at the same time. (Hsu?)

Quote:
Originally Posted by kwarny View Post Sub G - This was another presentation I enjoyed. It seemed a little off with music but gets my third choice for music. It had a fairly clean presentation for the HT clips. It seemed that the extension was there with the best especially after BHD. I guessed sealed.


desertdome did a nice little compilation of the scoresheet guesses provided here (Note: these guesses were allowed to be modified by the scoresheet voter - where as a paper vote was collected immediately after each audition that did not allow for final adjustment and those votes are represented in the following red and green graphic below the desertdome exert.) To see this post outside of the code context click the following hyperlink.
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showp...6&postcount=81
Code:
Sub A (Hsu VTF-15) – CHT 18.T, Hsu VTF-15, Hsu VTF-15, Cap Sealed, Hsu VTF-15, CHT 18.T, Cap Sealed, Cap Pro
Sub B (JTR Cap Pro) – Cap Pro, Submersive, Submersive, Hsu VTF-15, Cap Sealed, Cap Sealed, Orbit Shifter, CHT 18.T
Sub C ( Seaton Submersive) –  Cap Sealed, DIY,  Cap Pro, Submersive, Orbit Shifter, DIY, Submersive, Submersive
Sub D (CHT 18.T) – Hsu VTF-15, CHT 18.T, DIY, DIY, DIY, Hsu VTF-15,Cap Pro, Hsu VTF-15
Sub E (JTR Cap Sealed) – Orbit Shifter, Orbit Shifter, Cap Sealed, Orbit Shifter, CHT 18.T, Orbit Shifter, DIY, Orbit Shifter
Sub F (DIY MFW-15 Dual Opp) – DIY, Cap Pro, CHT 18.T, Cap Pro, Cap Pro, Submersive, CHT 18.T, DIY
Sub G (JTR Orbit Shifter) – Submersive, Cap Sealed, Orbit Shifter, CHT 18.T, Submersive, Cap Pro, Hsu VTF-15, Cap Sealed

If you go by the most guesses per sub, here is what people though:

Sub A - Hsu VTF-15
Sub B - Submersive or Cap Sealed
Sub C - Submerisve
Sub D - Hsu VTF-15 or DIY
Sub E - Orbit Shifter (5 votes!)
Sub F - Cap Pro
Sub G - Submersive or Cap Sealed


This shows just how difficult it was to really tell which sub was which:

Hsu VTF-15 - 4 subs received guesses
Cap Pro - 6 subs received guesses
Submersive - 4 subs received guesses
CHT 18.t - 6 subs received guesses
Cap Sealed - 5 subs received guesses
DIY MFW-15 Dual Oppp - 4 subs received guesses
Orbit Shifter - 4 subs received guesses

Hsu VTF-15 - 3 correct guesses
Cap Pro - 1 correct guess
Submersive - 3 correct guesses
CHT 18.t - 1 correct guess
Cap Sealed - 1 correct guess
DIY MFW-15 Dual Oppp - 2 correct guesses
Orbit Shifter - 1 correct guess
As to the accuracy of the blind voters on whether they were listening to a ported or sealed or horn sub - it's pretty clear the majority of enthusiasts cannot reliably tell the difference between the different sub designs in blind auditioning as the majority only got it right twice out of seven subs.
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showp...&postcount=372


"Without subs it's just background music - with subs it's the main event!"
Archaea's Theatre Room
2011 KC Sub Shootout
2012 KC Blind Sub Shootout
My Subwoofer Recommendations by Pricepoint
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This post will denote the frequency response taken once from all 12 seats and averaged to produce a single FR for the test. It should be remembered that these frequency responses do NOT represent a single position, or the Audyssey calibrated position, but represent the average for all seats residing in the "Audyssey bubble". The same exact person, Luke Kamp, held the mic in the same way for every single one of these frequency response graphs. He rested his hand on the back of the chair and held the omnimic facing up. The chair leg positions were marked in tape on the floor and chairs reset to their original position before every test. Blain helped us gather one fr graph, and that's the one we video taped - I'll be uploading videos later, but we ended up redoing it with Luke holding the mic to ensure there was as little variance as possible because Blain was holding the mic aloft rather than resting the hold on the chair back like Luke was doing.

Also I setup the omnimic to record SPL before every test and at the end of the ~35 minute demo session for each sub just wrote down what the peak SPL recorded was over the entire demo material. Keep in mind everything was level matched by Audyssey and omnimic graphed before the start. Some of these variations might surprise many of you. These max spl measurements were all taken from 17 foot back from the nearest subwoofer in the back of the room at the "command table" The response back in the rear of the room is muddy and peaky I'm guessing because it sure sounds a lot worse back there! Mark suggested I get a FR reading from the place where the SPL reading mic was set, and I think that's a good idea and hope to gather that soon so we can see at what frequencies the SPL may have been peaking at. The readings were taken with c weighting and slow response times through omnimic. Again - each time it was reset for the music section and left on the entire demo session and the max for the entire demo session is all that was recorded. Every sub hit their max SPL during the movie section. The mic was placed in the exact same position for each reading. You can see the mic's position in the movie I'll upload to youtube soon.

All calibration was done by Audyssey MultiEQ XT on my Onkyo TX-NR1007 receiver. After Audyssey was run the following steps were followed for each sub.

1)Run Audyssey using five positions. Main listening position directly underneath projector, then the two outside chairs on each row.

2)After Audyssey completes verify no sub level gain at maximum negative trim (-15), if so reduce gain and run Audyssey again.

3)After successful Audyssey completion - turn crossovers to 100hz

4)Turn off Audyssey Dynamic EQ (Audyssey EQ was left engaged)

5)Add 3 dB to each sub output (sub 1 and sub 2), in the unique instance of the MFW-15 dual opposed DIY which used a single sub out to the amp we used +6dB on the single sub out -- level matching was confirmed with omnimic and SPL meters to be the correct amount of gain added. The MFW-15 dual opposed graph is also middle pack in the FR curves, as you will note when the final results and individual labeled FR graphs are posted - so no issue there. Everything else Audyssey calibrated and we left it alone except to increase the sub dB by +3 on both outputs.

6)Take frequency response reading in each of 12 audition chair positions. Luke Kamp held the mic in each of the 12 positions for every sub on every demo. I averaged the captured value using omnimic's built in functionality, while not looking at the screen so as not to manipulate the results. Tesserract67 was responsble to make sure to make sure the omnimic mic continued to work (our USB cable kept trying to unplug when we were moving around and we'd have to start the 12 position gathering again). With this technique we got a single omnimic graph reading to account for the average of the entire listening area accoustic 'bubble' that Audyssey created. You won't have per seat readings from this meet because they've all be averaged and not saved individually. What are you going to do with 12 readings per seat times 7 subs? You want a chart with 84 FR overlays? I don't either.

7)Save frequency response .FRD average with sub name.

8)Reset Omnimic SPL numbers to capture SPL peak on each audition.

Here are the timelines the omnimic graphs were taken, and the timeline of our day...Shortly after this reading was taken we invited everyone down and began the audition.


Again -- frequency responses were gathered as an average using all 12 audition seat positions in one average graph per sub pair. The average curve was saved and overlayed to show the following. [Updated teaser with full reveal] I will break them down individually below so you can see how Audyssey affected each sub.



Oh and in case you are wondering - the two subs with the highest peak SPL measurements were flat out middle of the pack in the frequency response graphs shown above (the JTR Cap Pro and the JTR Orbit Shifter) - so don't go thinking that the subs with the highest FR graph had the obvious advantage the whole time. Another of the subs mid pack spl frequency response with a phenominal flat (in fact best of the day) frequency response had the lowest peak SPL measurement (MFW-15 Dual Opposed). Highest SPL doesn't just automatically and blindly win the day. The Submersive HP and Cap Sealed measured exactly the same at 118.3dB and they were the declared winners by averaged vote for music and movies respectively. Remember we weren't a/bing these subs back to back, and there was about 45 minutes + of downtime between each audition and the loudest subs of the day were not immediately demoed next to the quietest on both sides. Thats a lot of time to pass and sort of respect expectations off a couple dB here or there. Also note that the peak SPL measurements captured below do not necessarily indicate the peak clean SPL measurements of every entry --- they soley relate to the peak SPL captured at the command table 17 foot away from the subs in the back of the room during each of our day's audition with the standardized volume levels we utilized for this meet. The Inuke DSP 3000 amp was used for both the Captivator Pro pair and the CHT 18.T subs. A DSP was engaged for both sub pairs to help level the playing field since these two sub entries were the only passive entires without any native EQ. I will post their exact Parametric EQ settings as saved and screenprinted in the omnimic software next to their frequency response graphs for reference so people can see what EQ was applied prior Audyssey on each of these entries.

Without further ado - Here are the frequency response graphs and peak SPL number captured for each audition. 1/6 smoothing applied (omnimic default)


HSU VTF-15H Pair - peak SPL recorded - 117.1dB


JTR Captivator Pro Pair - peak SPL recorded - 123.3dB


Seaton Submersive HP Pair - peak SPL recorded - 118.3dB


CHT 18.T - peak SPL recorded - 118.1dB


JTR Captivator Sealed Pair - peak SPL recorded - 118.3dB


MFW Dual Opposed DIY Pair - peak SPL recorded - 116.4dB


JTR Orbit Shifter Pair - peak SPL recorded - 122.0dB




Some people have asked about the INuke DSP settings for Both the Cap Pros and CHT 18.T.

We only utilized the parametric EQ function and set both channels per each sub to try to help flatten the EQ - as these are passive subs and don't have mated amps with active EQ built into the plate amp (or in the case of the mfw-15 turbo project ---custom built into the outboard amp). We did not use the HPF or Dynamic EQ functions at all on the inuke amp for this meet, but I have screen shoted every config screen for transparancy.

INuke DSP 3000 DSP settings saved for both CHT and the Captivator Pros are noted here: These are unmodified and EXACTLY how used in the meet. I preformed my parametric EQ function for the Cap pros in the 15hz tune back in December of 2011. You can read about that here -
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showp...postcount=2901
I always wanted to flatten the line out a little more but got bored and never got back to it...

Here are the Inuke configs.

INuke DSP 3000 Config Screen where you can load which profile you want to use -


INuke DSP 3000 general config screen for JTR Cap Pros


INuke DSP 3000 filter/crossover screen for JTR Cap Pros (not used - no HPF engaged)


Inuke DSP 3000 Parametric EQ screen for JTR Cap Pros - Channel A (in 15hz tune)


Inuke DSP 3000 Parametric EQ screen for JTR Cap Pros - Channel B (in 15hz tune)


Inuke DSP 3000 Dynamic EQ screen for JTR Cap Pros - Channel A (not used)


Inuke DSP 3000 Dynamic EQ screen for JTR Cap Pros - Channel B (not used)


Here is the resulting frequency response graph captured in my room prior to the meet (December 2011) with the 15hz tune, no Audyssey, and no HPF. Obviously since I created these DSP settings and captured this frequency response information back in December - keep in mind this is from a single main listening position and not an average of the 12 seats used in the audition like you saw above in the meet graph posted for the JTR Cap pros It also doesn't not have Audyssey engaged in any fashion. The 15hz dsp profile setting was the profile I used at the meet with one port on each cap plugged. I'm sorry I didn't grab a new reading the night before without Audyssey like I have with the CHT subs, but I didn't think to do it and so you'll have to ignore the 20hz omnimic graph overlays - those settings were not used. You are looking at the red line in this picture to see about what My Cap pros were cabable of with only the Inuke's DSP applied and no Audyssey. 1/12 smoothing for this shots I believe.






Here are the Inuke DSP 3000 settings for the CHT 18.T subwoofer setup

Because I had a lot more time to play with my DSP settings and set what we used at the meet back in December 2011 for the Cap pros. You'll probably see I have more parametric EQ bands engaged for the Cap Pros, but from the post DSP graphs on Friday night, and the Sunday's retesting on the Inuke with the CHTs (which in the more "back to normal" room configuration with out all the subwoofer drivers and chairs and everything everywhere) --- we really had a pretty darn nice DSP setting engaged on the CHT subs as well even with only three bands per channel used for so short a session. Desertdome helped me set up the DSP settings for the CHT subs while Kwarny and Tesseract67 stood by and approved of these settings on Friday night.

INuke DSP 3000 general config screen for CHT 18.T


INuke DSP 3000 filter/crossover screen for CHT 18.T (not used - no HPF engaged)


Inuke DSP 3000 Parametric EQ screen for CHT 18.T - Channel A


Inuke DSP 3000 Parametric EQ screen for CHT 18.T - Channel B


Inuke DSP 3000 Dynamic EQ screen for CHT 18.T - Channel A (not used)


Inuke DSP 3000 Dynamic EQ screen for CHT 18.T - Channel B (not used)


Here is the resulting frequency response graph captured in my room post Inuke DSP application from a single main listening position (NOT averaged over 12 chairs - they weren't setup at this time) on Friday Night Jan 13. Unfortunately on Friday night I did not grab a screenprint of the initial non DSP frequency response. But this is prior to running Audyssey and all Audyssey EQ stuff off. We were only using the CHT 18.T woofers in my room with the Inuke DSP applied. We listened to through a couple clips and Tesseract67 (sub owner) made the decision to use this configuration over the other Dayton amp he had brought. (1/6 smoothing applied)


"Without subs it's just background music - with subs it's the main event!"
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2011 KC Sub Shootout
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post #4 of 848 Old 01-14-2012, 09:20 AM
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Well I guess I should write some thoughts down before I forget any more then I probably already have. I'm pretty sure the orbit shifter killed a few of brain cells.

Where to start? Well I'll do a bref intro. Frist I would like to say that I had only heard one of these subs before today and it was only once. Also I really had never really researched any of these either as I am not to that point in my next theater build. I had read up on the HSU due to all the drama from when it was first getting reviews. Other then that I knew nothing of what to expect from these subs. Also to tell the truth I didn't even know what subs where going to be here. So I may be wrong on everything I say but I think that was the point of this exercise.

BTW I am writing this review before I read what anyone else as posted.

Time to start!

Klipsch: I didn't fully rate it and even if I did it would have been the lowest. Lets just say I found it to be a great upgrade to someone that doesn't own a sub or maybe has a htib. At the price that I have heard its at recently It could serve someone very well. But for me I wouldn't be interested.

Sub A: My score shows it to be smooth accurate lacking a bit in depth and was “great” for music.
I didn't love this sub. I may have even scored it a bit higher then I would have it it wasn't the 1st sub I heard. The only clip I gave it a fantastic was the john mayor song as I felt it represented the kick drum and bass guitar well. Again I think I may have over rated this sub at 41 overall. I do believe this is a sealed box.

Sub B: As I said I had only heard one of these subs before and I am 99.99% sure this was the sub I had heard. I am wiling to say this was one of my favorite subs of the night. It may not seem that way in my score. I would love to own a sub like this. It was smooth it was accurate and played deep with music. I gave it and overall score of 66. I really liked this sub so instead of gushing over it. I'll just tell you what I didn't like about it. I scored it ok on the John Mayor clip as it just didn't really sound that good to me. I felt the Skadoosh could have been better and I didn't think it handled black hawk down as well as it could have. Personal opinion I feel it was a fantastic sub. BTW I said it is Ported as it is.

Sub C: Nothing really jumped out at me about sub C. I didn't have any notes on it. I thought it was a pretty good sounding sealed sub that played both loud and deep. It was good with music but didn't wow me on the movie clips. I did give it some “fantastic” points as it did play these clips with authority. Overall it was pretty clean but it just sounded a bit different then what I would have liked. Again I think it was a sealed sub.

Sub D: Oh where to start on sub D? It seemed to have the least output of all the subs tested. But I really liked it for what it was. Where some subs wowed me with their output this one was completely different. We started each test off with a sweep I believe it was 100hz to 20hz. One of the two subs had what sounded like a port chuffing near the end of the sweep. Other then that everything in my mind was telling me this was a really good sealed sub. I was thinking it sub sounds fantastic on music. It was very dynamic. Again overall it was not as loud. Where some subs would just power through a clip this one could really play soft sounds as well as show some meat to its bones on the hotter tracks. I really think this is the HSU sub or a sealed that just didn't have as much power as the other amps. I honestly don't know what all amps were used so that could be the case. But for now I'm not only sticking with ported I am going out on a limb to claim it as an HSU even though I had never even seen an HSU product in person before.


Sub E: When I first heard this sub I really thought it was the orbit shifter and part of me still does. It was the first sub that really hit me in the chest. It sounded good with just about anything we through at it. I rated it second on the point system and Its pretty much a tie for my front 3 anyways. I do think this is either the OS or the Submersive but I could be completely wrong and I would be ok as long as I find out what it is.

Sub F: I don't want to bash a sub but if there was one I didn't care for it was sub F. Thats all I really want to say about it. I'm pretty sure it was sealed and I gave it a very low score of 37. Sorry if you are a fan/owner. From where I was sitting it just didn't do anything for me.

Sub G: Like Sub E it was a beast! I am not sure what had more output E or G but they both were fantastic at giving you that slam in the chest feeling. I was a bit confused when it came time to vote if it was ported or sealed as I really couldn't tell. It was very tight. It played really low but had excellent slam. I voted horn but the more I learned about what subs that were in attendance it got me thinking it was the Submersive.

If I had to rate them in order of personal preference I would have to say its a very close 123 with B,E,G not necessarily in that order. If I had to leave tonight with one I guess I would say G. This is completely based on the blind test. I would love to own any of these three.

Now for the fun of it I will post what I think each speaker is. Whahaha this could be very interesting.

Sub A= Chase

Sub B = Ported Cap Pro

Sub C = Sealed Cap Pro

Sub D = HSU

Sub E = 1st pick Orbit Shifter 2nd Submersive

Sub F = DIY

Sub G = 1st pick Submersive or Orbit Shifter
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post #5 of 848 Old 01-14-2012, 09:21 AM
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I can’t wait to eat crow.

Mmmmmmmm….crow tastes like I may have purchased my DIY stuff too…soon.

Guess I’ll know when Archaea posts the results and what the others say.

So, that was fun and kind of what I expected has and will happen: mass chaos.

I had no idea what I was voting for.
Ported, Sealed, or was it the Orbit Shifter? Who the heck knows? I was trying to see if the lights were dimming or if I could hear amp noise (both of which, I think I saw at times) to try and determine if it was a JTR/Seaton with the 2400W amp, or the inuke with its noisy fans. That being said, even though I think I saw and heard those things, I am not modifying my guesses based on these tells.

Seriously, what an exercise in how bias plays a role, without the knowledge of which sub it is, your “confidence” in your “assessment” goes out the window. I only want to host or attend blind meets now if subs are being compared and not just for entertainment reasons. The way Jonathan organized and blinded people was very effective. A person with an AT screen theater and easy access would be the best..but this worked fine.

Oh man, I’m going to look silly, but lets get started I need to sleep.

We first listened to the Klipsch subs as a reference…unblinded. I thought they sounded good enough. I wish we would have listened to a couple of setups blinded to hear a few other setups and how the room sounded so I had a better reference of the variations, but it is what it is.

The music was scored for a potential of 12 points. The movies were a potential of 75 points.


Music/Movies Score (/)

Sub A: (8/42)


I wrote that I thought I could feel BHD on movies a bit. Someone said there is a 20hz and a 8hz? on speclab of this. I wonder if we ever felt the 8hz. I couldn’t feel anything on Vikings (Poop and Pipes from the Omaha GTG). Initially I thought maybe these were the Caps. I wrote tons of guesses through the night, but you can’t really finalize WHICH SUB you think it is until you have heard them all. Guessing seems futile.
I thought this sub was overall OK for movies. Nothing really wowed me, nothing sounded terrible. I was kidding on my sheet about chuffing. I didn’t hear any all night, but at the levels we were listening (115-120 Hz average?) in my seat…how could you. Bunk. I initially voted this as ported, but after hearing the rest, could be a lower sealed sub. The output didn’t appear to match that of several others, leading me to think of them as smaller drivers or less displacement per science. I’m sure I’m an idiot on this one.

Guesses (in order of my fake confidence): 1) HSU, 2) Cap Pro

Sub B: (12/51)


This thing dominated music. I really hope it isn’t the Cap Pros because I’m going to be the butt of jokes and feeling stupid for months until Archaea forgets I say this (he won’t). These were BY FAR the best to me for music. Destroyed the music. Perfect. Articulate. Fun. Of course I think they are sealed, because sealed subs are the BEST FOR MUSIC, right? Man, I hope I’m right on at least that. Did I mention these absolutely "beast mode" the music?
The reason I feel these may be the caps or ported, was during the movie sections, I felt TONS of air movement by my legs. I felt these did pretty solid overall. There was a weird part of BHD where the bass cut out for a few seconds. I looked at Kwarny during it to my left and he noted it too. Amp issues? They were a little boomy at times, but overall very nice. I like these. What are they. Archaea is so mean.

Guesses: (IOOMFC): 1) Submersive HP, 2) Cap S

Sub C: (10/58)


I was really happy with these. I felt they had great depth (more output?) on music and were fun. Again, felt like a sealed sound during music. Music is really the thing I felt I could qualify differences on with all of the subs, the movies I was clutching in the dark for something. During movies, I have no f@#$#@ clue what was playing. I can’t figure out why. It had the highest output to this point on HTTYD, and the Hulk had the nice shock wave on the cop car scene where they launch into each other and break the marquee on the theater. Nice. Are these our DIY?

Guesses (IOOMFC): 1) Dual Opposed MFW-15

Sub D: (7/47)


These fared the lowest on the music to me. I felt their depth was the weakest, but otherwise they were smooth and had a nice sound to them. I say their depth was the worst, because they were the only ones I heard that made a weird sound on the 100-20Hz sine sweep. Around the bottom of the sweep, I heard a mechanical rattle. I thought it came from the sub(s), but maybe it came from something in the room…pretty sure it was the sub though. I thought they blended well with mains, I started getting annoyed with the subs being hotter than the mains in some clips/tracks (SEE DUBstep), but these didn’t overpower. These sounded like my CHTs I just sold in sound imaging……
For movies these were weird. I had a few clips where the sounded great, but also a handful that were just OK. These didn’t have as much output as all of the other setups except the Sub A and the Klipsch they topped to me in my spot. I’m basing my guesses here on my perceived lower output ability in Archaea’s room (vs my GTG).

Guesses (IOOMFC): 1) HSU or CHT

Sub E: (10/59)


This sub cranked in output. I’m sure it was the combination of following D’s lower output ability, and the fact this just had some great output. The music was solid, fun, but I thought these sounded a bit hollow on some tracks like my F-20s have sounded. Horn? I’m sure not because I’m a bad guesser. The 100-20 Hz sound wave was freaking intense. Maybe the loudest of the night. Where this really shined was the movie tracks. Output in spades. I kept thinking these were the Orbit Shifters and I might as well stick with that.

Guesses (IOOMFC): 1) Orbit Shifter, 2) Submersive HP

Sub F: (10/54)


I also enjoyed these subs on music. I thought they were the best blending of the night (a bit less output than others, comparable to D feeling?) so I felt they blended well. If that doesn’t make sense, well, Archaea asked for subjective comments. I think they are pointless after last night, but I’ll type random thoughts anyways.
I felt these were airy, solid, nothing bad but nothing really stood out. I haven’t been guessing ported or sealed have I for a while. Well, that is because I have no freaking idea at this point in the night. I just kept writing sealed or ported based on air movement at my legs. I know, totally bogus reasoning but besides music with B, I had nothing to go on. This <15hz and wanting sealed before the GTG, and now seeing that I can’t tell, may have me selling my Pi-18s and Clone amps if I see the results and decide to be rash. I need the DIYers to keep me keepin’ on!!!

Guesses (IOOMFC): 1) Cap Pro, 2) CHT

Sub G: (11/60)


Last sub of the night. Maybe we saved the best for last?!?!?!??!?
Music it was right behind B, the only difference in I felt B had more depth. Man, I really hope B isn’t the Cap Pros. Please. Please.
These things rocked. Great way to end the night.
I felt these were sealed. Man, I’m a basketcase.
These were my favorite on movies by a nose. I was digging what they were putting out. Good output, no faults I heard, many positives.

I changed a few of these from my sheet or added a 2nd possibility after Archaea scanned them immediately after the GTG. Archaea will yell at me for that. Whatever, he wasn’t blinded! This is hard to decide what I think.

So, what did I learn? Well, if all of my guesses are wrong, than either I should find another hobby, should have saved money to buy either G or B or E based on my observations, or build out my DIY stuff and see how it compares at a future GTG?

Guesses (IOOMFC): 1) Cap S



MUSIC RANKINGS:

1) B, 2) G, 3) C, E, F (no particular order), 6) A, 7) D

MOVIE RANKINGS:

1) G, 2) E, 3) C, 4) F, 5) B, 6) D 7) A



Why was B so much better with music in my book? I want to hear whatever those are blinded again against G, E, C. I think I’d take my favorite out of those and buy them. Maybe another GTG is needed. If I would have ranked B higher in movies my favorite overall would be easy, but since G was consistently awesome in my book, it is my overall favorite.

G is HuskerOmaha’s Anointed Winner.

(Please, please, please, please, don’t be the HSU or Cap Pros…if it is the Cap Pros I’m saying there was something fishy going on and there was a “home turf” advantage.) I put qualifiers everywhere in this writeup because Archaea has it out for me.


I hope people see this for what it was: an exercise in the exclusion of bias and the results. There is bias in many things. I work in pharmacy/pharmaceuticals. Amazing how much bias there is when you know what is there. I loved this exercise. I think people should attempt to do blind testing (if they are comparing subs and not just doing it for pure social fun).

There was tons of downtime, much more than the actual listening. I’m happy there was, I started getting listening fatigue after the 4th sub. I was sitting directly between the center and left speakers. Maybe with my speakers I wouldn’t have gotten it as early, because horns are better.

A few other things….those raving about the Orbit Shifters are right, prodigious output. I think these could do 10k cube rooms with ease. No way I would need 2 of these unless you really had to smooth out the room. RMK? must be deaf. The thing is, I wouldn’t say they “DESTROYED” all of the subs in attendance. Yeah, maybe they shook apart drivers and some peoples subs won’t work when they get home, but when you are playing at 130+ dbs, there aren’t any notes anymore. It is just insane loudness.
Don’t get me wrong, great subs. Look fantastic. I’ll find out where I ranked them, but they are fun. I don’t know how Archaea’s house isn’t more messed up than just unseated tiling.

Another thing, we were listening LOUD. About +15 db over the Omaha GTG. I think it was about 5 db too loud. The mains were overbearing after a while in the front row. I had to borrow some earplugs for that insane dubstep. If I host another GTG I would think we would do about 10 db less and push the subs up another 3 db or so and try that. I also had a head cold so that played into my ears hating life for the last 3 hours. But, I couldn’t leave my ear plugs in, I tried on the last two but lost the dynamics and everything sounded like I was under water….took the plugs out to grade accurately for all of you! Hahahaa.. Desertdome thought it was fine, but he was in the second row and is an old fogey. My ears are still young.

Anyways, this should be fun.

I think I could have most of these subs and probably be satisfied, if I wanted to be picky, I want the cheapest and smallest form factor option in this order….G, E, B, C.


I wish we had another day. I think many people got to find out what the subs were and got to talk in person about observations after finding out the results (these people had already done their posting, I was tired). I got left out. After hearing the results, I’m going to need phone numbers of everyone.

Much more random observations and thoughts to discuss on the Orbit Shifter, the “we weren’t playing to the subs limits or LOUD” thoughts, but I’m tired and want to go to bed. I don’t get government holidays off.

POST THE ANSWERS ARCHAEA, I DON’T CARE IF YOU ARE IN THE DOGHOUSE! You okayed the LOUD!
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post #6 of 848 Old 01-14-2012, 09:22 AM
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Well,

I am gleefully watching the Giants decimate the Packers (Bears Fan)and thought it is time to write my summary.

This was a neat experience for a first time blind shootout. I really had a difficult time with judging these subs since it was such a long day in total. I was really trying to remember what I had heard 6-7-8 hours ago. The blind portion plays with your mind. I did enjoy that we started the meet off with a non-blind audition of the klipsch subs to set a baseline. In hindsight, it may have also been nice to have a higher end sub (klipsch being the low end) that isn't being judged to give a kind of "curve" to start. Anyway...here we go.

Music- C,E(tied), G,B(tied), F, A, D, KLIPSCH
Movie- G, C, E-B(tied), F, A, D, KLIPSCH

Klipsch- Not a terrible subwoofer. If you have a HTIB or are looking to upgrade an old sub, might be a good choice for you.

Sub A- I thought this sub sounded ok for music and movies. It didn't seem to do anything special but sounded fine for most of the music movie clips. Going with HSU

Sub B- I liked this sub a lot. There was some very clean reinforcement filling the rooms. Nice, clean, and deep. SMOOTH-CLEAN. Going with Seaton

Sub C-More impact than B for me on movies. I liked it for music as well. Impact was nice. Guessing JTR Cap Pro

Sub D-Not a big fan of this one. Muddy, peaky, and not very impressive overall. I thought Skadoosh scene bottomed it. I'm guessing MFW dual opposed.

Sub E- Liked it for music a lot. Movies were also impressive and had good feel and impact but a bit subdued. Guessing Cap-S

Sub F- Seemed a little boomy in midbass but played well during music. Movies were also done well, just missing something I couldn't put my finger on. Guessing Chase subs

Sub G- Boom! These seemed to really do well on music and offered a good sounding bass drum on the John Mayer clip I noted. My favorite on movies. Good impact and really liked the Hulk sonic cannon scene. JTR OS is my guess.

Boy this could be embarrassing. Can't wait to see what they were! If I am way off on all of them, I am blaming Jonathan's cats for brushing my leg during demos making me think the subs were REALLY making my pants shake!

Denon 4311ci with Mini DSP and antimode
L/R -DIYSOUND tempest towers (40" tall towers)
C - DIYSOUND alchemy 8
LS/RS - community D6

MACHTSUB SYSTEM
2-Stereo Integrity HST-18 D1 subs (happy dance) in dual 12 cuft ported tuned 16hz
Sub amp- inuke 12000dsp (byopc) bring your own power cord
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post #7 of 848 Old 01-14-2012, 09:24 AM
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I didn't look at any other person's post other than Stitch's first few lines where he says the same thing. I figured that was a good idea and I stopped reading right then so I wouldn't be biased at all.

First off, I wore ear plugs for every single second of every single demo so I feel I scored the subs pretty tough because of that and maybe you should take my impressions with a grain of salt because of that, I don't know. These are the earplugs I wore.

http://www.amazon.com/Etymotic-Resea...6632908&sr=8-1

Call me a wimp, but I'm so glad I wore these the whole time because I have tinnitus and my ears are doing just fine right now.

Ok, here is how I scored:

1 = anything from ok to pretty good, not a ton of pants flapping/bass hitting body feel or pressurization.
2 = very good tactile feel/pants flapping/pressurization/whatever you get the point.
3 = involuntary smile.

That may be a silly and ridiculous way to score, I don't know but that's what I decided right off the bat with the Klipsch subs so I stuck with it and was consistent as best I could be for the rest of the day.

I don't have my sheet right now, and I don't see them here anywhere yet (I didn't want to look to closely and accidentally read others specific impressions) so this will be very short until I see my sheet to help jog my memory.

I liked most of the subs. I thought 2 of them (other than the Klipsch) were not on the same level as the rest with 1 sub in particular (sub D) being the obvious weak link. I hope it was sub D, I think I scored it around 30 points? Watch this be the Captivator pair which I own and love....

My favorite for music was sub C. I have a feeling this was the Submersive pair just because the Submersive was my favorite for music at the last GTG. This sub was the best on the WOTW scene IMO.

I think the Captivators were the subs that I wrote down my 3rd favorite for music. I'm not positive which letter of sub they were, but I believe they were the 3rd from the last and I do remember scoring them at 40 points total. This sub also did very well on movies, I gave it a 3 on 2 different clips, I believe it was How to Train Your Dragon and the Incredible Hulk fight scene. That was more 3's than I gave any other sub for movies, the only other 3 for movies was sub C on the WOTW scene.

I thought most of the subs sounded far more similar than different. From the blind tests, if I had to pick a sub to own I would say C first, and then either the sub I picked 2nd for music or 3rd for music (I wrote this down on the sheet up in the music section). However, after hearing the Orbit Shifter let loose at the end of the night I think we should have tried to find the limits of every single sub. What I mean is, after the blind testing and the Orbit Shifter was cranked up it put EVERYTHING to shame from the blind testing.... including the Orbit Shifter from the blind tests. I think if all the subs were allowed to be played really loud and hot I would have had a much better idea for which sub I liked best. Granted everyone would have had to wear ear plugs if we did this for every sub, but I'm telling you - the difference between hearing those Orbit Shifters and the blind tests was night and day. I know terms like that are thrown around a lot here and I'm probably guilty of it myself, but it wasn't close. Hearing the Orbit Shifter no holds barred really was like hearing car audio bass in a house. IT WAS CRAZY. I think I heard Archaea say the db's were in the 130's at the BACK of the room? I don't know if he was just guessing or not, but that number wouldn't surprise me. It was way louder in the front of the room.

Anyway, I know my Captivator is no where near able to put out that kind of bass. But I would have liked to hear the comparison, as well as the comparison from some of the other heavy hitters. All of them would have come up way short of the OS, but it would have been great to compare.

That said, I was dead tired and took off earlier than most, so maybe some of that went on after I left I don't know. Thanks Jonathon for hosting, it was great especially the last part with the Orbit Shifter crushing all of us. I'm a bit worried for the guys who didn't put in ear plugs or cover their ears during that part!

I'll post more later after I see my sheet and am able to recall more info.

Edit. I'll clean this up after seeing my sheet, after reading some other responses, mine looks like an unorganized garbled mess. Without my sheet I'm having a tough time remembering what was what.

Ok, I have my sheet now this really helps jog my memory.

Klipsch: These did better than I thought they would however on music they were pretty bloaty sounding and on movies there wasn't much extension. Nice impact on some scenes, worth their cost I would say.

Sub A: Now were talking. Much better than the Klipsh. The music clips were much clearer and punchier and the bass didn't linger. One of the best subs of the day.

Sub B: Not as good. Other than the Klipsch and sub D, this was my least favorite. Not bad on music but didn't seem as tight.

Sub C: My favorite on music and awesome for movies too.

Sub D: I didn't like this sub very much. Music was boring not much impact with movies.

Sub E: 2nd best for music, liked this sub a lot too.

Sub F: 3rd best for music, maybe the best for movies along with sub C I think this is the Caps Pro

Sub G: Solid sub, I was beat by this time and can't remember much specifics.


Sub A: Sealed Cap
Sub B: HSU
Sub C: Submersive
Sub D: DIY
Sub E: Orbit Shifter
Sub F: Captivator Pro's
Sub G: CHT
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post #8 of 848 Old 01-14-2012, 09:28 AM
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First off thanks to everyone who had a hand in putting on this production. It was a tremendous amount of work and is greatly appreciated. Both Mark and Jeff were fun to talk to in person and very knowledgeable.

My sub background is a Miller and Kreisel V-76 and my current Rythmik F12SE. I had never heard any of the subs in attendance. This meet was particularly interesting to me as I am in the market for a sub or subs. I love my Rythmik but I need more output for my 5000 cu ft space and I may just add more Rythmik’s, but this is a unique opportunity to find a solution that will put a smile on my face for quite some time.

I found the Klipsch subs to be lacking in bottom end, impact, and accuracy. I gave them 1’s across the board which translates to good. I would have given them a lower rating for a few of the tracks if one existed but it is a decent sub for the money. Duals of this sub are easily outperformed in every imaginable way by my current sub.

For all the blind subs I felt that there was no outright losers for music. Most people would be thrilled at the performance of any of them. But, there were some I liked better for extension and accuracy as reflected in my ratings.

I thought there was more separation when it came to the movie clips. I found it very difficult to remember how all of the subs handled the various scenes. Auditory memory is short and there was around 12 hours between the first and last subs so anyone basing a purchase decision on our subjective findings please keep that in mind. If I were you I would call Mark and Jeff and utilize their expertise for your needs. That is what I will be doing in part because it has already been pointed out how much EQ most likely effected our results. But here goes.

Ported vs Sealed. I have owned one of each and I prefer my sealed sub by no small margin. However, I really had no idea which of the subs were which at the playback levels we were using. I guessed the best I could based mostly on the extension I perceived. Never heard port noise per say but a few times I might have heard something to make me choose ported over sealed. Really splitting hairs here.

Sub A was a step up from the Klipsch in extension and every other characteristic especially for music, but I was not blown away at any point with the movie clips. I found myself hoping that there were much better subs in our future and that was indeed the case. I still felt it was a solid sub and I did not feel like it did anything wrong. Nor did I think any of the subs ever really put out a bad sound.

Sub B was a step up from A in extension and accuracy for music. I felt like I was finally able to hear what the music bass tracks really sound like with a great sub. An even bigger step up was how it handled the movie clips. At that point I was glad I had come. More output, extension, and more grins.

Sub C was the most distinct of the day for me. It sounded the most different and I am not sure if that was what made it my favorite but there you go. It had noticeably more output across everything which influenced me as well. It was really accurate and smooth with lots of output down to the bottom of the sweep that went down to 20 Hz. It had a very punchy feel to it and great dynamics. I felt as though I could hear more distinctly the individual bass notes. The output and shaking of pants and a bit of pressurization effect made it my favorite by a long shot for movies. Gunshots had a real pop to them. I could go on and on about this one. It is the sub I would have taken home had the subs identity been revealed to us after the tests.

Sub D was a huge let down compared to C. The lack of output was the most disparaging quality. It did nothing wrong but I did not find myself smiling. This may have more to do with the lower perceived output than anything else.

Sub E was very good overall and sounded the most similar to sub C for me. I liked it better for the movie clips than for music. Not writing a lot on this sub but don’t let that fool you because I enjoyed the heck out of it especially since it came up right after Sub D. I wrote fewer notes as the day went on even though I liked the last three subs very much.

Sub F was excellent for music and I almost rated it as high as sub C but changed my mind at the last second. That is how close some of these rankings are and many of the subs sounded similar to me near the end of the meet. Maybe I was starting to get a little bit of listening fatigue or was just tired. I liked these almost as much as Sub E for the movie clips so overall very good performance.

Sub G was one that I felt did not draw attention to itself at first but maybe I mean that in a good way. I thought it was good for music but lacked a little punch. Again, for some people you might want a sub that blends in very well and does not draw attention. As we moved on to the movie clips the sub really shined and I became more and more impressed with it. I simply loved this sub for movie clips and at this point it took quite a bit to get my attention after a full day of listening to very high quality subs. Great extension with lots of pant flapping capability.

It is difficult for me to come up with a final ranking so I will just say a few of my least favorite were A and D. I had a great time listening to B E F and G and it is too hard for me to rank them overall. My favorite was C and I just had a ton of fun with it. I am sure my rankings would change based on a different EQ and changes in playback levels that might exacerbate each subs weaknesses. I also wonder what I would prefer if listening to only one in a reasonably sized room. OK, now lets see the results so we can all look like fools and laugh at ourselves a bit!

A final note about the OS's at the end of the meet. I posted this in the OS thread as well. I have NEVER experienced bass of that intensity! It was felt as much as it was heard. It was like percussive therapy. There was an extremely intense pressurization effect at least for a house.

It was played back way hot so not even close to normal levels and I would have loved to hear just one OS at the same levels we listened to at the meet so I could get an idea what it would do in my 5000 cu ft space. I feel this is the only sub in attendance that has the output to use a single in my room. Everyone in the room was utterly shocked. Almost comical, nigh ridiculous, yes I said re ee donk u lous levels of insanity. What a blast. That demo had me doing measurements in my basement immediately when I arrived home in hopes of squeezing in just one of these beasts!

Here goes nothin'
Sub A- HSU
Sub B- Cap S
Sub C- OS or SubM
Sub D- DIY
Sub E- CHT
Sub F- Cap Pro
Sub G- OS or SubM
I will be shocked if I got even one right
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post #9 of 848 Old 01-14-2012, 09:30 AM
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I arrived at Archaea's house at about 9pm on Friday night. HuskerOmaha and I were the first ones there. We unloaded the dual opposed MFW-15 subs and started doing some arranging and discussing the GTG with Archaea. After about a half hour Tesseract and Kwarny arrived. We unloaded the Chase subs and soon afterwards Jeff of JTR and his friend arrived with the Orbit Shifters and Cap sealed. The Orbit Shifters were huge and we were anxious to set them up and listen. I think we probably spent an hour listening to some intense bass with peaks over 130 dB. No matter how much we pushed them, they never complained. Once the 20 amp breaker was tripped that the subs were plugged into. There was also stuff falling off a cabinet upstairs!

After Jeff and his friend left for their hotel, we set up the Chase subs. Tesseract wanted to use Archaea's new Behringer NU3000DSP. Archaea has an Omnimic so we used that to get a handle on the frequency response. A few filters were added and saved in the amp since the Chase subs and the JTR Cap Pros were the only subs in the group that didn't have DSP or some EQ already built in to their amp solution. This was an attempt to make a few corrections before running Audyssey. I fell asleep in one of the home theater seats while they were testing and didn't wake up until they finished with stuff at 2 am! I ended up sleeping the rest of the night in the seat with it reclined. It was actually quite comfortable.

I awoke the next morning at 8:45 and got ready for the day. At about 9:30 we started listening to the Klipsch sub and ran through the music and movie playlist. I'm sure the process will be explained more by Archaea, so I'll go straight to my thoughts and the rankings.

It was a lot of fun listening to the subs and talking with the other guys between listening sessions. Jeff with JTR and Mark with Seaton Sound also spent time with us between listening sessions and discussed audio theories and other stuff. We also had fun watching the playoff games - especially the exciting finish to the Saint/49ers game.

We listened at a level of -10 dB and it was very comfortable for me all day. For the last two clips we would listen at -4 dB and that was okay for a short clip, but I couldn't listen to a whole movie at that level.

I've owned dual subs for several years and most recently have had dual MFW-15 Turbo subs. These are ported subs with custom Acoustic Elegance drivers and two modded Dayton SA1000 amps. They produce extremely clean, accurate bass with great dynamics. At the Omaha GTG they were among my favorites. I had listened to a lot of the clips with these subs and I was able to use them as sort of a baseline as I listened to the other subs.

I had heard all the subs prior to the listening session except the Hsu. The Orbit Shifter and Cap Sealed I had heard for the first time the night before, but didn't hear the Cap Sealed with very many clips. I felt familiar with most of the movie clips since we had used a lot of them for the Subfest 2011 GTG in Omaha back in October. I used the Bass I Love You, Black Hawk Down Irene, Hulk Cop Car and War of the Worlds Pod Emerging scenes to try to determine the lowest bass content in the subs. I noticed differences between all the subs and would have been happy with most of them in my own room.

I tried to be honest with the OK, Great, and Fantastic rating. I decided ahead of time that I wasn't going to reserve the Fantastic rating, but was going to give to where I felt it was deserved. I felt that my own subs performed Fantastic on many music and movies clips in my house, but lacked utmost depth and output. In other words, Fantastic wasn't some extreme that I hadn't experienced but was something I had experienced and could compare to. In looking back at these subs I see that I gave out over 50 Fantastic ratings. I truly feel that there really isn't much that could be improved on with these subs with the clips that were rated Fantastic. There may be a larger room somewhere that would drop some of these ratings, but for Archaea and his room I can't imagine any pair of subs at any price that would beat the subs I rated as Fantastic. Hearing the last sub, thought, made me realize that the other subs could be improved for movies and it is now my yardstick by which other subs will be measured for movies.

The testing was truly blind and at no time did I have any idea which subs where in use. Archaea and the rest of the setup crew did a great job keeping everything well hidden and disguised.

Here is my final ranking for the subs:

Music - B, G, F, E, C, A, Klipsch, D

Movies - G, B, F, E, C, A, Klipsch, D

Overall: B

I would put these into three groups with Group A being the best: B, G, F, & E in Group A. C & A in Group B. The Klipsch and D in Group C.

We used a 3 numbers for rating. 1 was ok, 2 was great, and 3 was fantastic. I will use these terms in my descriptions.

Klipsch - The Klipsch subs weren't very accurate and didn't have very good extention. They were ok with most movie clips with 4 clips I rated great. It wasn't fantastic on any clips.

Sub A - These subs were with Sub d and the Klipsch in not sounding very accurate. Many notes were smeared together and the music just didn't seem enjoyable. For movies they performed much better and I had many ok to great ratings with even 4 fantastic ratings. I indicated on my score sheet that it sounded the best with the Book of Eli, Drumline, Iron Man, and Matrix Revolution clips.

Sub B - These were my favorite subs overall. They were extremely accurate and dynamic. I really liked it for music and it performed well for most movies. It seemed like it didn't extend as deep and lacked output on the Black Hawk Down clip. Although the scoring is the same for music as G and similar to a few others, I felt these subs were were completely at a different level for music. The double bass in Diana Krall's Peel Me a Grape sounded the most real on these subs.

Sub C - This sub was more accurate that A. It extended deeper and had better dynamics with some of the movie clips. I thought it sounded quite good on music, but coming right after B it didn't sound as accurate. It had the most low output on Bass I Love you and was shaking the projector. This sub was the biggest inigma in that it performed fantastic with some clips, but was just ok with other clips. It seems like it has the potential to sound better with a little more setup or EQ. It sounded fantastic on Black Hawk Down, Master and Commander, Hulk Sonic Cannons, Book of Eli Gunfight, Iron Man Jericho, and U571. However, I rated it as just Ok for War of the Worlds. I thought it was lacking in the low bass on War of the Worlds. It was one of three subs (along with B and G) that had the best dynamics on the Book of Eli Gun Fight clip.

Sub D - This sub was my least favorite. At the levels we were listening at (-10dB) it was distorting the whole time. It wasn't very articulate and and lacked in dynamics. I think we had the levels to high for this sub or maybe Audyssey had done something. At any rate it hurt my ears from the beginning with the 100-20 Hz frequency descent clip.This was the first sub I thought was ported.

Sub E - This sub was the lowest scoring of group A. However, like the rest of group A it didn't receive a single "ok" vote from me. All my votes were "great" or "fantastic." It was very accurate, but seemed to lack some in the deepest portions of the clips. I gave it 17 great votes and 8 fantastic votes for movies. For music I scored it fantastic on accuracy, but felt it was a little below Sub B.

Sub F - This sub was a very close third behind B & G. On movies it was just 2 points behind Sub B. It lacked a little depth for music, but was very accurate and enjoyable to listen to. Any explosions on the movie clips were extremely quick, but didn't hit quite as hard as E or G. I'm not sure how to describe it, but the explosions seemed to have an immediacy or suddenness to them that almost startled me even though I had already heard the clips by now and knew what to expect.

Sub G - These subs actually scored the highest for me on movies, but I chose B as my favorite due to its music accuracy. Actually my music score tied with B on these subs and revealed a limitation in that the scoring for music didn't allow me to delineate the preference I had for B. These sounded different on movies than B (and all other subs) and seemed to have the greatest dynamics and variations in texture during the movie clips. It immersed me in the action more than any of the other subs. Every vibration, explosion, bang, thump, boom, or even the constant bass was beautifully rendered. This sub is the only one to receive all Fantastic scores from me for movies. I had given many other Fantastic ratings, but this sub was like going from 16 to 24 bit color. There was just more resolution.

One interesting thing I noticed during the listening sessions was that I smelled the drivers for both Sub C and Sub F. I noted this on my sheet that Archaea copied. I've smelled that with the Dual Opposed subs when getting a hard workout.This might have influenced my guesses for C & F.

Here are my guesses:
Sub A - CHT SS 18.1
Sub B - JTR Cap Sealed
Sub C - Dual Opposed MFW-15
Sub D - HSU VTF-15
Sub E - Orbit Shifter
Sub F - Submersive
Sub G - JTR Cap Pro
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post #10 of 848 Old 01-14-2012, 09:36 AM
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Let me start off by giving a big thank you to Archea for putting this on. I met a lot of great people and learned a lot, as well as got an opportunity to hear some of the top subs in the business. Also, a big thanks to Jeff and Mark for their contributions towards lunch and how cool is it of them to participate?!!
As far as my previous sub listening history goes...not much. Currently I have an Onkyo THX HTIB and had Cambridge Soundworks 12's. Needless to say, this was a treat. So, without further adieu, the review. Oh, btw, I missed the start of the Klipsch demo so I'll reserve my judgement. I must say, however, that for the price, I was really impressed with it.

Music: C, F, B & E (tied), A &D (tied), G

Movies: C, B, E, F, G, D, A

Not up on all the audio lingo, but here goes...

Sub A: For music, while I found it smooth and accurate with good depth, it just seemed subdued hence the lower "fun" rating. It did well on the lower end of the spectrum, but thought it lacked punch higher up. (CapS?)

Sub B: I really liked this sub, very smooth and accurate, with excellent low freq. output. It was a really fun sub and in retrospect probably should have gotten a 3 in the "fun" factor rather than the 2 I gave. This sub was "great" down the board with some "fantastics". I think what kept it from being the top, was that, in my opinion, it was a bit too forward in the upper bass region. (Too much of a good thing?) This sub seemed to have a lot of headroom which is why I'm guessing OS? I could certainly see myself with this sub and, with it's headroom and some tweaking, would probably be all I would ever need barring winning the lotto and building an outrageously large HT. (OS)

Sub C: This was the gem for me. Tops across the board in music and many "fantastics" in movies. Hearing Sub B actually helped me grade this one. While it didn't have the output of Sub B, it had more than enough. Where Sub B was forward in the upper bass region Sub C was more balanced in my opinion. It was those improvements that helped push it to the top. (SubM?)

Sub D: This sub was smooth, with ok accuracy and good depth; a fun sub. It' s that lower accuracy that I think caused it to not rate as high in movies as some of the others. I just didn't feel I was getting the definition between the notes like I did with some of the others.

Sub E: Also a very nice sub, with a fitting overall rank of 3 in both music and movies. It had a similar sound to Sub C, but lacked the output. (DIY?)

Sub F: This was, to me, a musical sub, hence it's number 2 rating in that category. It's only draw back was it was a little light in the upper bass range. That lack of upper bass, however, helped it in some of the movie clips as it deemphasized some of the more over the top clips with a lot (too much) upper bass in their tracks. (CHT?)

Sub G: This sub sounded similar to Sub D, but with less output, which lowered the fun factor. Like sub D, I feel it's lower accuracy score hurt it in some of the movie clips with a lot of information going on at the same time.
(Hsu?)

Ok, Archea, can you tell me which subs were which now?! I'm dying to know just how wrong I got it and which subs were my top pick.
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post #11 of 848 Old 01-14-2012, 09:40 AM
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desertdome is done cheating until the next GTG.

My top choices
Music - B, F, G, who cares after this point.
Movies - For room filling - E, C
Movies - For the cleaner presentation - F & G. F had a slightly cleaner presentation but G had more extension especially with BHD. Next would be B since it sounded the best but struggled with the deep extenstion. Add two more of these and bring up the low end a little and it would be my top choice for movies too.

Sub A - I gave this mostly 1s and some 2s. I disliked this for music. It sounded inconsistent throughout the frequency range and somewhat bloated but much cleaner than the Klipsch. It was okay for movies but lacked the impact or tightness. I guessed ported. It sounded like the JTR Cap Pros from the Omaha GTG.

Sub B - I gave it mostly 2s and a few 1s. It sounded much better on music. It was much cleaner sounded but I wish it would of had a little less overhang on music. I enjoyed it for movies since it sounded cleaner and restored the missing impact I have not heard yet. The one flaw noted was the lack of extension and deep output. BHD was major downer. I guessed it was a sealed sub. It had a familiar sound to me also from the Omaha GTG.

Sub C - This sub was alright. It was somewhat bloated on music but the notes seemed louder. I would of rated it higher for movies due to the perceived extra output but the extra decay kind of killed it for me. It was the first sub to get 3s (hulk for fun, and BHD for extension). I guessed sealed. It also sounded familiar to me from the Omaha GTG.

Sub D - This was a downer. I hated it for music, especially repetitive beats or music with constant lines. Movies sounded better but it seemed some range of the frequency band missing. It sounded similar to Sub A but with less extension. I guessed horn first but changed it after the next round since I forgot there was another ported sub in the mix.

Sub E - This was another setup that disappointed me for music. From the start I thought it had more extension. I was actually surprised that I ended up enjoying these for the HT clips. For HT, every clip seemed mostly clean but with more impact than any other setup. There was still a slight bloat. I ended up guessing horn since I was so baffled.

Sub F - I enjoyed this setup for music and HT. It was probably my second favorite setup for music. It had a slight bloat compared to B. It was equally as good for HT but maybe missing some extension to E and G on BHD from (not much though). I guessed sealed. Compared to it E, the presentation seemed weaker but cleaner.

Sub G - This was another presentation I enjoyed. It seemed a little off with music but gets my third choice for music. It had a fairly clean presentation for the HT clips. It seemed that the extension was there with the best especially after BHD. I guessed sealed.

I'm guessing what I think each sub is for fun.

Sub A - JTR Cap Pro
Sub B - CHT SS 18.1
Sub C - Submersive
Sub D - HSU VTF-15
Sub E - Orbit Shifter
Sub F - Dual Opposed MFW-15
Sub G - Cap Sealed

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post #12 of 848 Old 01-14-2012, 08:48 PM
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I want to thank Archaea for hosting this. It was very interesting to watch and participate in, and it was great to meet with my fellow enthusiasts. I had an absolute blast.

I also have some pictures to post after I get some rest.

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post #13 of 848 Old 01-14-2012, 09:27 PM
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did desertdome bust out his subdude pads yet?
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post #14 of 848 Old 01-14-2012, 10:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stormwind13 View Post

did desertdome bust out his subdude pads yet?

no, he got wise and sold the turbos
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post #15 of 848 Old 01-14-2012, 10:45 PM - Thread Starter
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The results are entirely contingent on HuskerOmaha putting up his subjective comments before I'll ever post them.

I am the keeper of the results and they don't get posted ever - if people don't comment.

Let me just say - nobody had much of a clue.

We wrapped up with some orbit shifter action. Jeff cut loose on the orbit shifters and let me show you what my omnimic read from a measured 17 foot away, in the back of the room, where the command center was (rear table). My omnimic kept saying overload and I kept incrementing the sensitivity to the left on the slider bar. See how low the sensitivity ended at on the top!!! Normally the sensitivity slider's in the middle of the bar. The omnimic isn't supposed to be accurate over 125dB so I don't know how accurate a reading it was -- but I can tell you it was probably the loudest bass I've ever heard in my life...

mercy...and

Awesome!

EDIT: Also keep in mind this measurement was in the back of the room which in susbsequent measurements was ~7db lower than what the front seating area (before the ceiling beam) was being exposed to. The same applies to all of our measurements taken and posted in this meet. They all need to have about 7dB added because all spl measurements were taken from the same rear table position.
Here is more information on this topic...
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...1#post21532431
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...0#post21538160

 

DECEMBER 2013 EDIT - - further DISCUSSION on this topic noted that we were using the value 'peak' and we should have been using the value 'max' to record SPL levels that better aligned with a traditional SPL meter.


 


"Without subs it's just background music - with subs it's the main event!"
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2011 KC Sub Shootout
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My Subwoofer Recommendations by Pricepoint
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post #16 of 848 Old 01-14-2012, 11:53 PM
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I am going to keep this pretty short since I was in the know and helping set up subs.

Want to thank Archaea for having another successful GTG. I had a blast and can't say enough as to how gracious of a host you are. Shout out to Mark and Jeff for being two laid back, helpful guys who make bad ass subwoofers. Between those two we had quite the knowledge "bass" on hand. Only real regret I have is not getting to meet and talk with more of the guys partaking in the blind testing. I don't quite have the poker face of the others, and some of you were fishing so I kept to myself for the most part as well as keeping busy. It seemed to be a great group of guys we had and the day couldn't have gone better, unless we get more girls interested in sub GTG.

The blind testing was a smashing success. I was very impressed with how it turned out, and it was a good chuckle seeing the results coming in. I won't say much about the subs since I wasn't blind and this post is before results are shown for those starting from the beginning. Nothing too surprising to me with the final results. When every sub is a good deal, more money more subwoofer. I am kicking myself even harder for not picking up some of those mfw drivers though. I also wasn't expecting the Cap S to be that small for an 18". If you are looking at small form factor without giving up performance, look no further.

Enjoy!
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post #17 of 848 Old 01-15-2012, 10:07 AM
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I must be the only guy that has a terrible memory. I don't know how you guys can remember all of your impressions without being able to look at your sheet. I should have wrote some stuff on another sheet, because other than C and D I can't remember what was what right now.

Archaea, you said the Caps are still your favorite. Surely that doesn't include the OS's!! I assume you mean when you take all factors into consideration like size, etc.

I had never experienced my limit with bass until hearing (mostly feeling!) those last night after all the blind testing was done. If I had the room for them I would start budgeting for a pair of those right now. I've heard a lot of subs in the past year or so, and they all seem like toys compared to those refrigerators.
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HuskerOmaha, get off your butt, the suspense is killing me!!!
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post #19 of 848 Old 01-15-2012, 11:18 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carp View Post

I must be the only guy that has a terrible memory. I don't know how you guys can remember all of your impressions without being able to look at your sheet. I should have wrote some stuff on another sheet, because other than C and D I can't remember what was what right now.

Archaea, you said the Caps are still your favorite. Surely that doesn't include the OS's!! I assume you mean when you take all factors into consideration like size, etc.

I had never experienced my limit with bass until hearing (mostly feeling!) those last night after all the blind testing was done. If I had the room for them I would start budgeting for a pair of those right now. I've heard a lot of subs in the past year or so, and they all seem like toys compared to those refrigerators.



No -- I didn't like them better. As to the orbit shifter - a mix of ported and sealed sound is probably the right terminology for the orbit shifter, but I still prefer the cap sound personally. Nothing wrong with either the orbit shifter or submersive...both Fantastic Grade A subs. Both VERY clean at elevated volumes - like the cap. Just not my taste preference. I didn't participate in the blind voting but I heard both in short segments from various positions, but I'm definately familiar with my room and my captivators in my room, and I know what I like (or at least what I'm very familar with!)

I don't get jealous about the extra dB...they use the same driver and my two passive caps cross the insanity line very easily as is. How much more powerful are the Orbit Shifters design than the cap? I don't know, but it wouldn't be any useable difference in my house. My kitchen floor grout is cracked in multiple places - new as of the orbit shifter visit Friday night and Saturday. More to the point - my whole tile kitchen floor now sounds like I'm stepping on serran wrap when I walked across it this morning, meaning all the morter underneath is broken. I didn't hear it everywhere yesterday (just by the kitchen entrance where it's the worst) probably because my ears were overloaded, but it's funny today. I'm not sure how much louder the orbit shifters get than the caps, but I don't think anyone would ever complain of lack of useable output on the captivators, even with a semi cheap pro amp.

To Jeff: I told you last night and I'll tell you again... No need to apologize. I expected as much since I'd already cracked lots of the grout in my bathroom floor and popped a tile lose from the caps with just my EP4000 amp. I expected this might happen, and am not worried about it. I think it's slightly amusing actually. It'll be funny to see if my wife notices the new tile 'sound'. [Edit -- oh yes she noticed and gave me an earfull...] 134dB from 17 feet away in my room was insanity. My skin felt tingly, my hair felt like it was standing on end. My entire pant material from my feet to my crotch was vibrating - not just the pant leg tips. In fact I've never felt the pant fabric over my crotch area vibrate. That was a bit erie. Jeff what kind of subs you dealing? It was a fun experience, but how often could you repeat it? Destruction ensues!

Overall I don't need the extra SPL and I still personally like the sound of the caps better as far as I can tell. (I wasn't blind listening in the same seat so take my opinion as such).

"Without subs it's just background music - with subs it's the main event!"
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2012 KC Blind Sub Shootout
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post #20 of 848 Old 01-15-2012, 11:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wlelandj View Post

HuskerOmaha, get off your butt, the suspense is killing me!!!

I know, Jonathan is a tough egg to crack. I have to nap, go to a commitment out of town, and then try and post late tonight. (I'd have it up but they thought it was a grand idea to go to Denny's at 330am and lose 1.5 hours of sleep).

My score sheet is a garbled mess of chicken scratch, so I'll try and write out my final "guesses" to which subs and why. Then I'll be muzzled when Archaea posts what they really are and humbles us all.

Can't wait.

My teaser is that muBic-only had me picking a different winner than from my ovGrall winner considering both music and movie demos.

More to come (I'll edit the post tonight that I reserved above). Thanks for hosting Jonathan!
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post #21 of 848 Old 01-15-2012, 12:12 PM
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"I'd have it up but they thought it was a grand idea to go to Denny's at 330am and lose 1.5 hours of sleep)."

The one by the Drury? Man, that was my hotel! I was up there slaving away at my review while y'all were down the having a Grand Slam?! Y'all suck!
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post #22 of 848 Old 01-15-2012, 01:21 PM
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Ok after some much needed sleep I think I should put a bit of perspective out there.

1st Thanks to Archaea for having putting this all on. I am sure he put a LOT of work into this test. I don't think the test could have been any more blind then it was.

2nd I may have come off as very critical of some of the subs. This isn't really true. My results were based only on the blind test that were performed. None of these subs were overly bad and I'm pretty sure they would all put my SVS sub to shame in terms of output.

I still can't wait to find out what was what. I really hope I was at least a little right.
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post #23 of 848 Old 01-15-2012, 01:29 PM
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Jonathan,

So, in other words the Caps weren't putting out anywhere near what they could in the blind test, even in the last 2 clips - correct?

Did you play any more subs to their max output levels like Jeff did with the OS? I think i need to hear your Cap setup compared to mine once I get it all set up. I've never hit levels with my single Cap that make me think I would never need more (says the guys who wore earplugs all day) so maybe I really am limited when it comes to having all my crap on the same 15A line.

I'll gladly take this to the Cap forum or PM if you think this doesn't belong in this thread. I have a feeling I'll be talking to an electrician sometime in the near future.

I can't thank you and all the guys that weren't part of the blind listening enough, that had to be a hell of a lot of work. If I weren't such a candy-a$$ I would have stayed later.
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post #24 of 848 Old 01-15-2012, 03:41 PM
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I just wanted to say thanks to Jonathan for putting this all on. Quite a bit of organizing and preparation to pull it all off. I just got back from KC (6.5 hour drive) and am going to try and get my impressions written up tonight. It was a fun time, nice to put faces to names, but man is blind listening over a 14 hour day exhausting. Really difficult to keep a mental audio signature for all the clips/music/subs. Then have your memory rattled by some Orbit Shifters at 1am!

Luckily, Jonathans cats told me the entire sub lineup, A though G. Always good to bring catnip to a sub shootout...

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post #25 of 848 Old 01-15-2012, 04:37 PM
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I updated my post to include my (incorrect) predictions on which sub was which.
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post #26 of 848 Old 01-15-2012, 05:02 PM
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I find the comments fascinating! Everyone seems to have a completely different take on every sub. There are only a few themes from post to post and everyone seams to think each sub is different. The guys in the know are probably laughing their @$$es off at us.
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post #27 of 848 Old 01-15-2012, 05:13 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stitch1 View Post

I find the comments fascinating! Everyone seems to have a completely different take on every sub. There are only a few themes from post to post and everyone seams to think each sub is different. The guys in the know are probably laughing their @$$es off at us.

Yes... Yes we are...

Luke's over right now and we are laughing like a bunch of school kids.

I see new sub purchases and some self loathing in many of your futures.

"Without subs it's just background music - with subs it's the main event!"
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post #28 of 848 Old 01-15-2012, 05:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stitch1 View Post

The guys in the know are probably laughing their @$$es off at us.

Pretty much! At least it has made for some great entertainment for Jeff and I on the long drive home.

Thanks again Archea, it was quite the event!

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post #29 of 848 Old 01-15-2012, 08:29 PM
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I had posted last night using Archaea's computer. When I went to save the post something happened and I lost all I had typed. I retyped it but was getting tired of typing so I gave an abbreviated version.

I just finished expanding my initial post and ranking the subs using my scoring sheet and the few notations I had written on the back of the scoring sheet. I initially started writing my guess down on the back of my sheet for the first four subs, but didn't write anything for the last three. I was also keeping track on the back of the my order from best to worst of how I was ranking the subs in my mind without actually counting up the scores.

I had voted for D and E to be ported, but I ended up thinking E was the Orbit Shifter. I really didn't know how being a folded horn would influence its extension and just kind of thought after listening to all the subs that maybe E was the Orbit Shifter.

After the GTG finished we stayed up and listening some more to the Orbit Shifters and the Submersives. I was fun to get a little more time with these subs. I would have liked to hear the Cap Pros and Cap Sealed some more, but maybe another time.

Of all the subs, the Cap Sealed were the smallest with the Orbit Shifters being the largest. With their built in amps, the Cap sealed make a great choice for a room that needs the sub to be unobtrusive.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wlelandj View Post

The one by the Drury?

Yep, we were there from about 3:30 to 4:45 am. We even had a drunk guy join as at our table for a few minutes.
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post #30 of 848 Old 01-15-2012, 09:19 PM
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Just posted what will end up being the subs picked perfectly!

Haha...whatever. Archaea, your turn! I put some 1 and 2 choices to fire you up. You should probably point out they don't perfectly match my papers!

But, I can honestly say I still don't know for sure what any of the subs are.

How will I sleep tonight.
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