Audioholics reviewed the SVS SB12-NSD - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 58 Old 07-02-2012, 08:11 AM - Thread Starter
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This was already posted in the SVS owner's thread (by user Matt34), but for those who don't regularly visit that thread....
http://www.audioholics.com/reviews/speakers/subwoofers/sb12-nsd-subwoofer

Awesome performance for such a small sub. I think this puts to rest the argument of the Emotiva X-Ref 12 vs SB12-NSD.

The SVS is clearly the better performer - better extension at both ends, lower distortion, higher max SPL (except at 50Hz & 63Hz where the X-Ref 12 has a peak in response)... and Josh Ricci commented on the excellent sound quality as well...

Now if AH would just measure the NHT B-12d as well... so we know who is king of the small sealed subs right now...
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post #2 of 58 Old 07-02-2012, 09:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alphaiii View Post

I think this puts to rest the argument of the Emotiva X-Ref 12 vs SB12-NSD.
The SVS is clearly the better performer - better extension at both ends, lower distortion, higher max SPL (except at 50Hz & 63Hz where the X-Ref 12 has a peak in response)... and Josh Ricci commented on the excellent sound quality as well...

Glad that is finally settled. LOL
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Originally Posted by alphaiii View Post

Now if AH would just measure the NHT B-12d as well... so we know who is king of the small sealed subs right now...

I'm curious, too. If we can trust NHT's specs, it looks like it could be #2 on this list.

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post #3 of 58 Old 07-02-2012, 09:57 AM
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That is superb looking test data for such a small and relatievely inexpensive sub. Very impressive. It appears to beat out the old SB12-Plus in every possible way performance-wise.
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post #4 of 58 Old 07-02-2012, 12:36 PM
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This has me thinking how great the SVS SB-16 Ultra would test. Too bad about the price of neodymium.
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post #5 of 58 Old 07-02-2012, 12:47 PM
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This makes me even more proud of my stacked SB12nsds. In defense of Emotiva, my ultra 10 sub is also a solid performer. To bad Emotiva didn't keep the Ultra Line in production
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post #6 of 58 Old 07-02-2012, 01:05 PM
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BTW, I find it interesting that the tiny SB12nsd can muster up a better room size rating than the much larger Cadence CSX-15 eek.gif
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post #7 of 58 Old 07-02-2012, 02:51 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kesando View Post

This makes me even more proud of my stacked SB12nsds. In defense of Emotiva, my ultra 10 sub is also a solid performer. To bad Emotiva didn't keep the Ultra Line in production

I'm not knocking Emotiva... I have an Ultra 12 in my main room - great sub for the money (and I'd argue, a much better value than the X-Ref).

I only commented on the X-Ref 12 because there was some back and forth for awhile about it vs the SB12-NSD... particularly from one member here who wouldn't recognize acknowledge any measurements of the SB12-NSD because they weren't conducted by Ricci/Audioholics.

Now, both subs have been measured by the same person and held to the same standards... and I think it's pretty clear which offers better objective performance.

Perhaps Emotiva should run more aggressive sales on the X-Ref 12. wink.gif
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post #8 of 58 Old 07-02-2012, 04:35 PM
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There is no doubt that the SB12 is a better performer, but don't get carried away, it isn't a head and shoulders better than the Emotiva. It's significant output advantage is below 30 hz, so in most real world use it probably wouldn't sound any different than the Emotiva, especially seeing how they perform so closely above 30 hz (up till 70 hz). For the same price its a no-brainer, get the SVS sub, but if the X-Ref 12 was $100 or so cheaper, it would make the extra output below 30 hz a questionable value for a music based subwoofer.
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post #9 of 58 Old 07-02-2012, 05:45 PM
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The SVS also has a significantly better upper bass response as well. I can't see why anyone would choose the Emo over the SVS unless the Emo was hundreds lower in price.
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post #10 of 58 Old 07-02-2012, 05:56 PM
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This shows what it takes to get flat response down low with a small sealed sub. It's maxed out at 95db below 30hz.


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post #11 of 58 Old 07-02-2012, 06:08 PM
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Good review. I just love seeing SVS stuff always do good in 3rd party measurements/reviews. No hype needed...


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post #12 of 58 Old 07-02-2012, 06:54 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jay1 View Post

This shows what it takes to get flat response down low with a small sealed sub. It's maxed out at 95db below 30hz.

No question, to get that extension, SPL is sacrificed. No one should expect miracles from any small sealed sub.

But even with only 95dB output below 30Hz, it's still a good bit more than the X-Ref 12 which costs roughly the same... and generally speaking, distortion is lower.
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post #13 of 58 Old 07-02-2012, 06:59 PM
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Originally Posted by alphaiii View Post

No question, to get that extension, SPL is sacrificed. No one should expect miracles from any small sealed sub.
But even with only 95dB output below 30Hz, it's still a good bit more than the X-Ref 12 which costs roughly the same... and generally speaking, distortion is lower.

I wasnt knocking the SB12, it is one of the few small sealed subs that even attempts to go below 30hz. Just wanted to make sure people understood the limits of the design, and that just because it has a nice looking frequency response, it is still not suited for a large room.


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post #14 of 58 Old 07-02-2012, 07:06 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shadyJ View Post

There is no doubt that the SB12 is a better performer, but don't get carried away, it isn't a head and shoulders better than the Emotiva. It's significant output advantage is below 30 hz, so in most real world use it probably wouldn't sound any different than the Emotiva, especially seeing how they perform so closely above 30 hz (up till 70 hz). For the same price its a no-brainer, get the SVS sub, but if the X-Ref 12 was $100 or so cheaper, it would make the extra output below 30 hz a questionable value for a music based subwoofer.

Right now the X-Ref 12 is $595, which makes it more appealing. For a music only sub, maybe it's hard to justify the extra $55 for the SB12-NSD for the bland charcoal finish... and harder to swallow the extra $85 for the piano black... if on a tight budget.

But if the sub will be doing HT duty as well, it seems well worth the marginally higher cost to go with the SVS. I'm not saying it's head and shoulders better.... but when the the X-Ref is $699 (or even $649), I just see no reason to pick it over the SVS. Others may not agree.

Consider also that it's not just the below 30Hz extension... but above 100Hz as well that the SVS outperforms the X-Ref. This is something that matters to folks with small speakers that need higher xover points.

Again, I'm not knocking Emotiva or saying the X-Ref 12 is a bad sub... If it were competing in a slightly lower price range, it'd likely be recommended more often.
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post #15 of 58 Old 07-02-2012, 07:07 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Jay1 View Post

I wasnt knocking the SB12, it is one of the few small sealed subs that even attempts to go below 30hz. Just wanted to make sure people understood the limits of the design, and that just because it has a nice looking frequency response, it is still not suited for a large room.

Agreed...
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post #16 of 58 Old 07-03-2012, 02:44 PM
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Every small sealed sub is going to have serious compromises in terms of performance, but what stands out to me is how well SVS chose the right balance of compromises to maximize what you can get in a 14inch cube.

Edit:

IMO it sets a high bar on what a small sealed sub should perform like:
- ruler flat response
- does not make bad noises when driven hard, distortion kept in check.
- enough usable extension for HT use (below 30Hz)
- wide bandwidth for blending with any speaker.
- actually exceeds stated frequency response specs (+/-3dB down to 21Hz)
- still priced affordably

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post #17 of 58 Old 07-04-2012, 07:02 AM
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My general comment.

The SB12 was measured within 6db from 21-300Hz, actually better than what SVS claimed! Better at both the low and high end. Try a crossover of even 100Hz on other 12" sealed sub in the market with small speakers :-)

It would be a waste of money to get just a music only sub that has limited low and high end performance for some $600 when the SB12 has a 21-300Hz range within 6db for a few bucks more. I see no reason why anyone would not consider the SB12 over any other 12" sealed sub for a small-medium room.

One could cut and paste (cherry pick) any of the comments in the review but there is no doubt which one wins. The 100m Olympic run off for the 3rd spot could not be decided based on a fair run, but this one has been decided for good :-)
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post #18 of 58 Old 07-04-2012, 01:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mupi View Post

My general comment.
I see no reason why anyone would not consider the SB12 over any other 12" sealed sub for a small-medium room.

I'll take a JL Audio f112 or Rythmik f12se over a SB12 any day.
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post #19 of 58 Old 07-04-2012, 02:32 PM
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Well if you want to spend the extra money and want to deal with the weight feel free. To me the light weight (35lb) and price makes SB12 a no brainer.

F112 is like $3100, dont know the weight
F12SE is $999, 80lb shipping weight.

To me both are out of the list due to cost and weight Lets stick with the subs in the $600 range as that is a fair comparison to the SB12. Lets not compare a BMW and a Honda Civic :-)
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post #20 of 58 Old 07-04-2012, 04:11 PM
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Originally Posted by shadyJ View Post

I'll take a JL Audio f112 or Rythmik f12se over a SB12 any day.

I have now doubt those 2 are awesome performers, but expensive and bigger. I would love to see the F12SE measured and see if it really is only down 2 dB at 14 Hz.

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post #21 of 58 Old 07-04-2012, 05:40 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by shadyJ View Post

I'll take a JL Audio f112 or Rythmik f12se over a SB12 any day.

So would I...

But the Rythmik is a good bit bigger, and about $400 more expensive (after shipping). And the JL - well - outrageously expensive... Even at half off MSRP, it's still 2x the cost of the SVS.

So I don't think the SB12-NSD is competing with either of those subs...
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post #22 of 58 Old 07-04-2012, 06:24 PM
 
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OK, so it beats my beloved X-Ref 12. smile.gif However the for the SB12-NSD, I'm not blown away by that review. Still possess small sealed subwoofer shortcomings.
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post #23 of 58 Old 07-04-2012, 07:00 PM
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You are back with your "sour grape" type of remark. 21-300Hz within 6db and it also confirms the SVS claim which you had questioned all along. Yeah it is a small sealed sub and is no one expects it to deliver 100db at 20Hz but for that kind of response (at both the low and high end) it is no doubt a better value for the money. It does not have the apparent draw backs that X-Ref12 has at both ends. One could easily cross over at 100 or 120hz with small speakers and it also delivers adequate low end response for movies in a small-medium room.

One does not have to console oneself after buying the SB12 that it is a music only sub etc etc. For a small foot print, light weight and reasonable price it doubles as both music and movie sub. No need for any further arguments or debates. If some one still wants to buy the X-Ref12 just because it is a few bucks less, he or she will only be making a fool of himself/herself.

You will also be wasting your time by making any more arguments or cutting and pasting any remarks in favor of X-Ref12 in spite of that measurement of SB12 posted at Audioholics . Either enjoy your X-Ref12 or sell it and get the SB12 :-)
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post #24 of 58 Old 07-04-2012, 07:22 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mupi View Post

You are back with your "sour grape" type of remark. 21-300Hz within 6db and it also confirms the SVS claim which you had questioned all along. Yeah it is a small sealed sub and is no one expects it to deliver 100db at 20Hz but for that kind of response (at both the low and high end) it is no doubt a better value for the money. It does not have the apparent draw backs that X-Ref12 has at both ends. One could easily cross over at 100 or 120hz with small speakers and it also delivers adequate low end response for movies in a small-medium room.
One does not have to console oneself after buying the SB12 that it is a music only sub etc etc. For a small foot print, light weight and reasonable price it doubles as both music and movie sub. No need for any further arguments or debates. If some one still wants to buy the X-Ref12 just because it is a few bucks less, he or she will only be making a fool of himself/herself.
You will also be wasting your time by making any more arguments or cutting and pasting any remarks in favor of X-Ref12 in spite of that measurement of SB12 posted at Audioholics . Either enjoy your X-Ref12 or sell it and get the SB12 :-)

I don't mean to sound like sour grapes, its just piece of audio gear, nothing more nothing less, its not that serious. Having said that, some of you folks was trying to make the SB12-NSD out to be some kind of little miracle box, however it isn't, this confirms what I said all along. Its tried by its limitation of being small sealed sub. In real world listening test of content, he didn't exactly use terms glowing terms that blow you away in describing its performance. Don't try to make this sub out to be more than what it is, a nice little sub, nothing more nothing less.

BTW, that's all the X-12.
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post #25 of 58 Old 07-04-2012, 08:25 PM
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Sour grape remarks again. No matter how much you console yourself and your X-Ref12 purchase, the fact is that the SB12 is a better performer than X-Ref12 at both the low and high end as shown by the measurements. No need for any glowing remarks. I dont think anyone wanted glowing remarks about SB12. What people wanted was a measurement by the same person who measured the X-Ref12 so that the claim by SVS can be confirmed.

No one said SB12 is a miracle box. Most people here trusted the response of SB12 posted at the SVS web site and based on that response people concluded that it would perform well both at the low and high end. You were probably the only person who questioned SVS's expertise to measure a sub they manufactured and would not concur with what they measured. Now you have no choice but to concur.

Until now there was no third party review (in particular by Audioholics and the same person Ricci) to confirm the response claimed by SVS. The brief review of the older SB12 wasnt enough to ascertain that the new SB12 would be just as good or even better. Perhaps SVS read all the demand here asking them to submit the SB12 for a review by Ricci. Now the performance of SB12 has been confirmed by a reputable third party and no amount of consolation using some "sour grape" type remarks is going to change that.

It would be futile to have any debate as to which is a better sub when the measurements clearly indicate that the SB12 has a better performance at both ends.
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post #26 of 58 Old 07-04-2012, 09:36 PM
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The SVS outperforms the Emotiva by a much wider margin than I would have thought. While it doesn't break the laws of physics, it pushes the envelope of what a small, lightweight, and relatively inexpensive can do.
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post #27 of 58 Old 07-04-2012, 10:38 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mupi View Post

Sour grape remarks again. No matter how much you console yourself and your X-Ref12 purchase, the fact is that the SB12 is a better performer than X-Ref12 at both the low and high end as shown by the measurements. No need for any glowing remarks. I dont think anyone wanted glowing remarks about SB12. What people wanted was a measurement by the same person who measured the X-Ref12 so that the claim by SVS can be confirmed.
No one said SB12 is a miracle box. Most people here trusted the response of SB12 posted at the SVS web site and based on that response people concluded that it would perform well both at the low and high end. You were probably the only person who questioned SVS's expertise to measure a sub they manufactured and would not concur with what they measured. Now you have no choice but to concur.
Until now there was no third party review (in particular by Audioholics and the same person Ricci) to confirm the response claimed by SVS. The brief review of the older SB12 wasnt enough to ascertain that the new SB12 would be just as good or even better. Perhaps SVS read all the demand here asking them to submit the SB12 for a review by Ricci. Now the performance of SB12 has been confirmed by a reputable third party and no amount of consolation using some "sour grape" type remarks is going to change that.
It would be futile to have any debate as to which is a better sub when the measurements clearly indicate that the SB12 has a better performance at both ends.

Why are you all hot under the collar. Its just a sub. You chose to purchase the SB12-NSD way before this review, which proves your mind was made up already. I was the one telling you, before rushing to judgment, wait until a 3rd party review came out. Now you lambasted me then for admonishing you as such. Now you're trying throw this in my face. Also, if real world listening reviews doesn't matter, why does Audioholics give them? Or do they just post measurement and call it day. What demands to review the SB-12 are you talking? You call a few worshipers at the alter of all things SVS fanboys a demand. Anyway, that review was nothing special or spectacular, quite honestly, it seemed to be a little cookie cutter to me.

Just enjoy your SB12-NSD. I'm sure its a good sub, never said it wasn't, big deal. So what if your Accord crank out few extra MPG and few extra HP than guy'next door Camry, geez!!
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post #28 of 58 Old 07-04-2012, 11:13 PM
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Blasphemy on the subwoofer forum smile.gif
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. Its just a sub.
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post #29 of 58 Old 07-05-2012, 03:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Auditor55 View Post

Why are you all hot under the collar. Its just a sub. You chose to purchase the SB12-NSD way before this review, which proves your mind was made up already. I was the one telling you, before rushing to judgment, wait until a 3rd party review came out. Now you lambasted me then for admonishing you as such. Now you're trying throw this in my face. Also, if real world listening reviews doesn't matter, why does Audioholics give them? Or do they just post measurement and call it day. What demands to review the SB-12 are you talking? You call a few worshipers at the alter of all things SVS fanboys a demand. Anyway, that review was nothing special or spectacular, quite honestly, it seemed to be a little cookie cutter to me.
Just enjoy your SB12-NSD. I'm sure its a good sub, never said it wasn't, big deal. So what if your Accord crank out few extra MPG and few extra HP than guy'next door Camry, geez!!

When someone buys a product before it is independently tested and then when it is later tested, the results are excellent, it feels good to know you made a good choice and that your faith in the company is well-placed. What happened to you, on the other hand, is just the opposite. The product you bought turned out to be an under-performer and did not meet the manufacturer's specs. This is perhaps why you seem to be getting hot under the collar. If I were you, I'd try not let it bother me. If you liked your Emo before, it's still the same sub now. However, compared with the SB12, it's weaksauce. Get over it.
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post #30 of 58 Old 07-05-2012, 03:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Auditor55 View Post

OK, so it beats my beloved X-Ref 12. smile.gif However the for the SB12-NSD, I'm not blown away by that review. Still possess small sealed subwoofer shortcomings.

Show me a sub around that price range and size that perform better.

I think you've read one too many subjectively over-exaggerated reviews in your day. Ricci's reviews have always been light on the subjective B.S and heavy on real world data. There are many other sources if you prefer it the other way around.

It's refreshing in this industry.


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