I want a noticeable upgrade from a Mirage s12, under $1k... - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 29 Old 07-24-2012, 02:12 PM - Thread Starter
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I looking to upgrade from a Mirage s12, must be a noticeable step up from the Mirage...eek.gif

70% movies/30% music, rest of system Dynaudio Focus series

Mirage specs:

Front-Firing Subwoofer / Bass Reflex With Two Downward-Firing Ports
1200 Watts Peak Power, 300 Watts Continuous
Woofer: 12" Polypropylene Titanium Deposit Hybrid With Ribbed Elliptical Surround™
Voice Coil Diameter: 2"
Maximum Driver Excursion: 1.61" Peak-To-Peak
Frequency Response: 19Hz-120Hz +/- 3dB
Phase Switch; 0/180 Degrees
Variable Low Pass Filter: 40Hz-120Hz @ 18dB/Octave
Inputs: Low Level, Stereo High Level (Speaker Level)
Crossover Filter Switch: On/Off



looking to spend under $1k...

thanks!biggrin.gif
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post #2 of 29 Old 07-24-2012, 04:11 PM
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Room dimensions?

Projector: AE7000
Screen: 5x12 Wilson Art Laminate Designer White
Receiver: Denon 2112Ci
Fronts: DefTech 8020ST
Center: DefTech 8040HD
Side Surround: DefTech SR 8040 BPs
Rear Surround: DefTech PM 1000s
Subwoofers: 2x HSU VTF 15H's
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post #3 of 29 Old 07-24-2012, 04:15 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by raehza View Post

Room dimensions?

11'x14' 8ft celing
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post #4 of 29 Old 07-24-2012, 05:12 PM
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That room is very small and any ~ 500 dollar Sub from the usual suspects will work just fine. HSU, SVS etc.

If you want nice room response, go with Dual SVS SB12's. They have amazing ratings and reviews. But 1 large woofer will do more than just fine.

I had an SVS PB12-NSD in a 2500 cf^2 room and it was shaking the room like crazy.


Ray

EDIT: It appears that the SB 12 is around 600 bucks and change. I thought it was cheaper. I guess it will also depend whether you want to have 2 subs in your room. I am more than enough confident that even ONE SB12 or PB12 nsd will rock you socks. If you want to go even more extreme, get an HSU 15h. I have a dual system and its absolutely magnificent. But they are VERY large.

Projector: AE7000
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Receiver: Denon 2112Ci
Fronts: DefTech 8020ST
Center: DefTech 8040HD
Side Surround: DefTech SR 8040 BPs
Rear Surround: DefTech PM 1000s
Subwoofers: 2x HSU VTF 15H's
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post #5 of 29 Old 07-24-2012, 05:13 PM
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noticeable upgrade in sound quality or volume?
This particular author seemed to think the Mirage S12 mostly kept pace with the HSU VTF-3 MK2 which means a typical $500 to $700 sub might not be a "noticeable upgrade"

http://www.hometheatersound.com/equipment/mirage_omni_s12.htm


You might be looking at the $1k range...

there are gads of reviews for $1k subwoofers....check out the two brothers review:

http://www.avsforum.com/t/1313176/shootout-epik-empire-vs-hsu-vtf-15h-vs-cht-cs18-1-vs-rythmik-fv15-vs-ed-a7s-450/0_20

"Without subs it's just background music - with subs it's the main event!"

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post #6 of 29 Old 07-24-2012, 05:16 PM
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Archaea asks a good question, but I am assuming he would want both for <1000 dollars, considering the Mirage is about 400 bucks.

Projector: AE7000
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Fronts: DefTech 8020ST
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Side Surround: DefTech SR 8040 BPs
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Subwoofers: 2x HSU VTF 15H's
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post #7 of 29 Old 07-24-2012, 07:59 PM
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Given the room size a ported sub really isn't needed, and will likely have excess output below 30hz. Something like a Rythmik F15 would be a great choice as an all around upgrade, unless the OP is looking for something with even more boom.


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post #8 of 29 Old 07-24-2012, 09:13 PM
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How can you say that a Ported sub may have too much input (like the PB12-NSD I suggested) and then suggest a F15? Isn't the F15 a much larger and powerful Sub than the SVS? And you can't ever go to big anyways. It's all adjustable.

Ray

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Subwoofers: 2x HSU VTF 15H's
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post #9 of 29 Old 07-24-2012, 09:44 PM
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Google pressure vessel gain. Sure eq can fix most things. The rythmik will still go much deeper, with flatter response in a room that small. See the most recent ken kreisel sub thread for an example of what the op could get from a sub like the f15 in a small room.


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post #10 of 29 Old 07-25-2012, 06:49 AM
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The S12 is already a pretty decent sub in both output, and sound quality. I found in my room the S12 stars to roll off below 25Hz and didn't really have any output to speak of below 22Hz or so. The S12 has lots of punch as it seems to have a slight peakiness around 40Hz or so (my own closed mic'ed in-room measurement)

I wouldn't bother switching it to something like a VTF3 as it's mainly an incremental change in extension and overall output

In your room, you might benefit from a larger sealed sub like the Rythmik F15/E15 that will give you deeper bass extension and the benefit of higher output as well. With high quality speakers like your Dynaudios, you might notice a sound quality benefit as well.

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post #11 of 29 Old 07-25-2012, 11:24 PM - Thread Starter
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thanks for the suggestions!

if only the JL Fathom subs were reasonably priced!!eek.gif
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post #12 of 29 Old 07-25-2012, 11:25 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jay1 View Post

Google pressure vessel gain. Sure eq can fix most things. The rythmik will still go much deeper, with flatter response in a room that small. See the most recent ken kreisel sub thread for an example of what the op could get from a sub like the f15 in a small room.

got a link??biggrin.gif

thx!
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post #13 of 29 Old 07-26-2012, 01:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by warpdrive View Post

The S12 is already a pretty decent sub in both output, and sound quality. I found in my room the S12 stars to roll off below 25Hz and didn't really have any output to speak of below 22Hz or so. The S12 has lots of punch as it seems to have a slight peakiness around 40Hz or so (my own closed mic'ed in-room measurement)
I wouldn't bother switching it to something like a VTF3 as it's mainly an incremental change in extension and overall output
In your room, you might benefit from a larger sealed sub like the Rythmik F15/E15 that will give you deeper bass extension and the benefit of higher output as well. With high quality speakers like your Dynaudios, you might notice a sound quality benefit as well.

I think a VTF3 would give you more than just an incremental change in extension. Without even taking into account room gain, the VTF3 will take you down to a solid 16 hz. While that might not seem like much in numbers (only 9 hz extra) that is actually a lot, physically speaking, due to the long wavelengths at such a low frequency. I don't think the mirage would compete with a VTF3 mk4 in other respects either, despite them both being ported 12"s. Higher quality driver, higher quality amp, more refined design, and more features, I don't think these subs are comparable.
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post #14 of 29 Old 07-26-2012, 03:10 AM
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Are you going to continue to use the Mirage sub or outright replace it? The reason I ask is I recently upgraded from a small Sunfire TrueSub to an Epik Empire. The Epik blows away the Sunfire, but rather than sell the Sunfire I placed it in another corner of my room and dialed down the sound a bit. It now does not overload when being really pushed now that I have it turned down a bit, yet the room sounds better as the bass response is smoothed out with both subs playing. Just a thought for you...
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post #15 of 29 Old 07-26-2012, 05:36 AM
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Theanimala, That wont' work for the OP, as he will have two ported subs and a ported sub driver phase effectively inverses phase below port tune, so the higher tuned Mirage sub would cancel out the HSU's lower tune ability if he tried to run both at the same time. Both of your subs are sealed, so that problem doesn't occur with you (depending somewhat on if and what HPF's are engaged in your plate amps)

"Without subs it's just background music - with subs it's the main event!"

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post #16 of 29 Old 07-26-2012, 07:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shadyJ View Post

I don't think these subs are comparable.

Your opinion.

I have heard both the VTF3 (albeit Mk3) and S12 in the same room. They are indeed comparable (at least the Mk3). And if the OP traded the S12 in for the VTF3Mk4, it would be a incremental upgrade at best. I suggest the OP look for a bigger jump in performance to make it worthwhile for him.

How did you arrive at the conclusion that the Hsu has a higher quality driver and amp BTW?

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post #17 of 29 Old 07-26-2012, 07:45 AM
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I have to ask the question since nobody else has.

OP, what is it that you are not happy about your current subwofoer? Output? Extension?

Have you spend the time to properly place the subwoofer and calibrate it? It could be something as simple as you are sitting in a bass null (the center of the room), and that is something that can be addressed with placement.

It is hard to recommend a subwoofer if we don't know what you are currently not happy about.
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post #18 of 29 Old 07-26-2012, 05:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kyle454 View Post

got a link??biggrin.gif
thx!

http://www.ascendacoustics.com/pages/products/subs/f15.html


This is an approximation of what you can expect to get in a room as small as yours (black line in room, vs purple anechoic)



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post #19 of 29 Old 07-26-2012, 05:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by warpdrive View Post

Your opinion.
I have heard both the VTF3 (albeit Mk3) and S12 in the same room. They are indeed comparable (at least the Mk3). And if the OP traded the S12 in for the VTF3Mk4, it would be a incremental upgrade at best. I suggest the OP look for a bigger jump in performance to make it worthwhile for him.
How did you arrive at the conclusion that the Hsu has a higher quality driver and amp BTW?

There is no way a similar priced B&M sub is going to have higher quality parts than a Hsu, especially one that has as many generations of improvement as the VTF3 mk4. When you tested them, did you test the max output levels? Headroom counts for a lot here. Here is a unfavorable comparison against the VTF3 mk2 in a professional review of the Mirage:
Quote:
By selling direct to consumers, companies such as Hsu and their main competitor, SVS, can offer high-performance subwoofers at prices that provide incredible value for the money, although they lack dealers where you can audition their products before you buy. Like the Mirage, the Hsu VTF-3 Mk II has a 12" driver and a 300W digital amplifier, but its much larger enclosure and greater internal volume give it a distinct advantage over the Omni S12 in performance. However, the VTF-3's considerable bulk makes placement more difficult. The smaller, more attractive Omni S12 is definitely much more décor friendly.

Although the Mirage was very agile, the Hsu is even tighter and more controlled. The heartbeats from Dr. Chesky’s 5.1 Surround Show sounded cleaner through the Hsu, though there didn’t seem to be much of a difference in output levels (except with the 20Hz tone, where the Hsu seemed slightly louder). At reference levels, which most people find far too loud, the Hsu was clearly able to play louder with less distortion than the Mirage; at normal listening levels, the differences were almost indistinguishable.
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post #20 of 29 Old 07-26-2012, 08:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shadyJ View Post

There is no way a similar priced B&M sub is going to have higher quality parts than a Hsu, especially one that has as many generations of improvement as the VTF3 mk4. When you tested them, did you test the max output levels? Headroom counts for a lot here. Here is a unfavorable comparison against the VTF3 mk2 in a professional review of the Mirage:

Your preconceptions and Hsu biases are very clearly showing now.

I have put both the Mk3 and the S12 through my own listening tests and demanding material and I'll say it again. The Hsu would be INCREMENTAL improvement in performance over the S12. Would I, in good conscience, recommend the OP take a loss in the S12 to get a Mk4? I went through the mental excercise myself based but the conclusion was a clear "no way" I think the OP should aim higher.

As for maximum output level, you really seem to be hung up on maximum headroom as the main criteria for a sub's worthiness. Maybe if you run both subs so that they are basically hitting the limiter most of the time, the Hsu's improvement in performance at the sub 20Hz range would probably be noticeable on certain material a fraction of the time, but I would say that the Mirage can hang in there with the Mk3 inthe above 25Hz range. My room is bigger than the OP's and I can say I haven't hit compression or the limiter on the S12 to any great degree. So why does headroom count for so much again?

So are you actually advocating that the OP trade in his S12 for a Mk4 with a $1000 budget?

BTW: The Mirage S12 is the exact same sub as the Energy 12.3 which is listed on Tom Nousaine's sub chart (attached compilation below)

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post #21 of 29 Old 07-26-2012, 09:03 PM
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Nousaine.zip 16k .zip file

I don't remember where I got this list from but credit to the original compiler whoever that may be
Attached Files
File Type: zip Nousaine.zip (15.5 KB, 19 views)

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post #22 of 29 Old 07-26-2012, 09:30 PM
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I would not take that list as the gospel truth when it has the Energy sub measured at only 1 db behind the Velodyne 1812 at 25 and 32 hz. It also has the original VTF2 (a 10" 250 watt sub if I remember correctly) finishing ahead of a VTF3 mk3 with turbo. There is other contradictions in there as well.

Headroom counts for a lot. Headroom means dynamics. If you don't listen to anything very loudly, that might not be important to you, but for those who want a more lively system, it is vital. A sub with more headroom stands a greater chance of pressurizing the room, and it will also last longer, as it is taxed less. It also means those peaks won't be compressed as much, and it can get louder for when you really want to let your system blaze. Headroom is life!
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post #23 of 29 Old 07-26-2012, 09:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shadyJ View Post

I would not take that list as the gospel truth when it has the Energy sub measured at only 1 db behind the Velodyne 1812 at 25 and 32 hz. It also has the original VTF2 (a 10" 250 watt sub if I remember correctly) finishing ahead of a VTF3 mk3 with turbo. There is other contradictions in there as well.
Headroom counts for a lot. Headroom means dynamics. If you don't listen to anything very loudly, that might not be important to you, but for those who want a more lively system, it is vital. A sub with more headroom stands a greater chance of pressurizing the room, and it will also last longer, as it is taxed less. It also means those peaks won't be compressed as much, and it can get louder for when you really want to let your system blaze. Headroom is life!

I got to agree with shadyJ on this one.
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post #24 of 29 Old 07-26-2012, 10:14 PM
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1) again you never even mentioned anything about his room size and volume level before deciding for the poster than he needs more headroom.
2) How do you know that the Hsu has that much more headroom? Tom who has actually measured the sub in room shows that the Mirage/Energy is no slouch. Oh wait, the Hsu has a better quality amp and driver just because it isn't B&M? Please.
3) You didn't answer my question. Are you actually advocating switching his S12 for the VTF3? Keep in mind he has a $1000 to spend and he really is looking for a solid improvement for his small room. Instead of trying to argue with me, maybe you can actually offer some real practical advice like I did based on when I actually used both subs I am comparing

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post #25 of 29 Old 07-26-2012, 10:24 PM
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warpdrive has had hands on experience with both of these subs in the same room and he says incremental, another reviewer online said the difference was incremental -- again someone who also compared them both directly.

shadyj and oztech -- nobody is saying the VTF-3 MK4 isn't the superior sub -- what is being discussed is that a $700 HSU is likely an incremental upgrade from the Mirage S12 and not worth pursuing as the typical "noticable" upgrade that the OP is pining for.


To me it seems pretty clear that OP should skip the $700 range subs and go straight for the top of his stated budget and start researching there.

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post #26 of 29 Old 07-26-2012, 10:54 PM
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lol I was never arguing that the OP should get a VTF3, not with a $1k budget! I was arguing the notion that the VTF3 is only a slight improvement over the Mirage, I think it is more than that, but I am only speculating from specs, I have not heard the Mirage. To be honest, I don't even think the Mirage would be a bad sub at all, it looks pretty good for a B&M sub, from what I can tell. But Tom's list is weird, and I have to wonder about how consistent that testing is. Also if you have not brought the subs to the edges of their performance, you don't really know how they compare. Yeah, they sounded about even in a small room with moderate volume, but a small 8" sub can match a large 18" sub if the loudness is kept low. It's when you turn things up that the difference becomes clear.

Anyway, to bring the thread back on topic, I would ask the OP what he listens to, and what he wants from a sub. If it's something like needs a lot of detail, I would go for a Rythmik F15 or F12. If it is something that wants some big dynamics, a Hsu VTF15 or Epik Empire might be a better idea. For loud movies and games, I might swing toward the VTF15h, and for loud music I might give the Empire a try.
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post #27 of 29 Old 07-27-2012, 02:32 PM
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i am in a similar situation. I want quality sound. with my Sierras-1 NrT, I am thinking Rythmik F12. Any thoughts?

Denon AVR 4311ci, Ascend Sierra-1 NrT, Ascend HTM-200 (surrounds), Rythmik F12, Panasonic TH50PX60U, Samsung BD ES6000, Denon DVD-2910 SACD/DVDa, Monster HTS 5100 MKI, Monster Z2 Biwire, Logitech Harmony One, Sennheiser HD600, Schiit Modi/Vali
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post #28 of 29 Old 07-27-2012, 05:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pianist718 View Post

i am in a similar situation. I want quality sound. with my Sierras-1 NrT, I am thinking Rythmik F12. Any thoughts?

The F15 is only $100 more. Unless you have some kind of super strict size and budget limits, the bigger driver will get you a lot more then a $100 performance increase.


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post #29 of 29 Old 07-28-2012, 04:19 AM
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You'll never know what you had or what you will be getting without some measuement gear. For what ever reason the Mirage isn't living up to your expectation, i can live with that. Its kinda nice to see someone trusting their ears. Now, its time to find out why. To go out and plunk down $1k and put it in the same place as the old one just isnt what this science is all about, unless you dont care, and you are looking to get a little more than what you have now, which without measurements you still wont have a clue about.

So, get reading on how to measure your sub inroom, and see what it is doing and is not doing, then going out looking for a sub will much more easier, you will be able to verbalize what it is that you need....

Good luck and i hope i wasnt to snooty or opinionated on the measurement stuff, but dont let all this science scare you away from learning more about it, i am an idiot most of the time and with an OmniMic system and a laptop and all the eggheads that surf around here even i can do it !!!!!!

Good luck!!!


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