15" PASSIVE Sub? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 21 Old 08-30-2012, 07:49 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi I am thinking about upgrading my speaker system by adding a separate sub. Currently I have NHT VT-2 main LR that have built-in 10" subs being powered by my Parasound 200W amp. I have noticed lately that when playing movies at reference volume (LOUD) that sometimes I can hear the sub "bottom out." I would like to just use my Yamaha 7ch receiver to bi-amp my towers and use my amp in bridged mode to power a 15" passive sub. I would like to find one under $500 if possible. I tried searching online but it seems very difficult to find a passive sub.
Thanks!

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post #2 of 21 Old 08-30-2012, 08:45 AM
 
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Originally Posted by mnc View Post

Hi I am thinking about upgrading my speaker system by adding a separate sub. Currently I have NHT VT-2 main LR that have built-in 10" subs being powered by my Parasound 200W amp. I have noticed lately that when playing movies at reference volume (LOUD) that sometimes I can hear the sub "bottom out." I would like to just use my Yamaha 7ch receiver to bi-amp my towers and use my amp in bridged mode to power a 15" passive sub. I would like to find one under $500 if possible. I tried searching online but it seems very difficult to find a passive sub.
Thanks!

Active or passive subs aside, a suggestion would be to add a pair of 12" subs as opposed to one 15" sub.
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post #3 of 21 Old 08-30-2012, 08:51 AM - Thread Starter
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OK, so after looking around some more, I realize I can get a 12" powered sub for under $350. I'm thinking that might be a good and cheap way to go. I could then use my amp to power my towers full-range and use the sub for my LFE channel. Looking around I found a brand called Bic America. Never heard of them, are they any good? There is one with a 12" Kevlar cone and 1000W amp for about $333. Any suggestions? Also, how much difference is there between a 12" and 15" sub? \
Thanks for all the help!

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post #4 of 21 Old 08-30-2012, 09:05 AM
 
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Originally Posted by mnc View Post

OK, so after looking around some more, I realize I can get a 12" powered sub for under $350. I'm thinking that might be a good and cheap way to go. I could then use my amp to power my towers full-range and use the sub for my LFE channel. Looking around I found a brand called Bic America. Never heard of them, are they any good? There is one with a 12" Kevlar cone and 1000W amp for about $333. Any suggestions? Also, how much difference is there between a 12" and 15" sub? \
Thanks for all the help!

My understanding, all things being equal, 3dB and if a second sub of equal size is added, you can get an additional 3-6dB boost. Also, placing the sub in a corner should give you a 3dB boost.

An example, put your 10" sub in a corner and you'll get about a 3dB boost. Add a second 10" sub and depending on placement you'll get an additional 3-6dB boost. Doing this will allow you to turn your 10" sub volume down. Simply by putting your sub in a corner, one can expectedly, get similar volume at a lower volume setting. And for no cost, this will help with your bottoming problem.

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post #5 of 21 Old 08-30-2012, 09:57 PM
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Either way a 12 or 15 inch sub would have good bass I think. If you like a lot of vibration and windows and stuff rattling get a 15 inch. If you want more punchy type bass that you can still feel get a 12. I have heard some good reviews about some bic subs on here. Not everyone likes them though. People complain on online reviews that the 15 inch floorstanding speakers tweeters go into protection mode to much. I never heard a bic speaker before, but some of them seem reasonably priced. If you really want a passive sub and can't find any maybe you can find a used older passive sub. I have a cerwin vega 10 inch passive sub with two cerwin vega satellite speakers that go with it. It sounds okay to me. I got it cheap. I think that you might get more bass power with the powered subs though. When I was a kid all I ever saw for years was passive subwoofers at the stores like technics 12 inch passive subwoofer. my old neigbor used to have a 12 or 15 inch klh passive sub. it sounded good to me.
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post #6 of 21 Old 09-01-2012, 05:33 PM - Thread Starter
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Ok I've found a good deal on the Premiere Audio PA-150 that should do the trick. Now my question is: How hard is it to setup my system with my towers running full-range and adding the PA-150 to the subwoofer out on my receiver? How hard is it to balance everything out, or will the YPAO do it for me?

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post #7 of 21 Old 09-02-2012, 02:08 PM
 
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Originally Posted by mnc View Post

Ok I've found a good deal on the Premiere Audio PA-150 that should do the trick. Now my question is: How hard is it to setup my system with my towers running full-range and adding the PA-150 to the subwoofer out on my receiver? How hard is it to balance everything out, or will the YPAO do it for me?

Pretty much, depending on how new you are to the technology, there is going be a learning curve. First things first, take time to Google "Bass Management" so as to get a better understanding of why you're doing what you're doing. Here's a couple of links to get you started.

http://www.audyssey.com/blog/2009/05/small-vs-large/

And

http://forum.blu-ray.com/showthread.php?t=95817

In regard to bass management, taking time to understand what you're learning about is key and yes, it expectedly will be confusing and yes, a bit overwhelming. Welcome to the club. Good luck with this part.

biggrin.gif

Don't know nothing about YPAO. The link to the Audyssey article will give you an understanding about large vs small when it comes time to set the size of your speakers. In this case, small it not size but a reference to what's the frequency range your speakers are capable of reproducing and how this plays into how your internal DSP, via low pass filters, are going steer your lower frequencies.

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post #8 of 21 Old 09-02-2012, 02:11 PM
 
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post #9 of 21 Old 02-25-2013, 05:24 AM - Thread Starter
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Okay I'm changing my mind back to looking for a good, inexpensive 12" or 15" PASSIVE sub. I plan on using my receiver to bi-amp my mains built-in 10" subs and bridging my 250/ch amp to drive the sub. So far I'm having no luck finding a good inexpensive passive sub. Seems like everything is powered.

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post #10 of 21 Old 02-25-2013, 05:56 AM
 
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Originally Posted by mnc View Post

Okay I'm changing my mind back to looking for a good, inexpensive 12" or 15" PASSIVE sub. I plan on using my receiver to bi-amp my mains built-in 10" subs and bridging my 250/ch amp to drive the sub. So far I'm having no luck finding a good inexpensive passive sub. Seems like everything is powered.

Maybe I'm splitting hairs here but 10" drivers in a speaker are "woofers" as opposed to "subwoofers." Our speakers, Klipsch, Epic, CF-3's, have 10" woofers so that's where I'm coming from with my thoughts.

And from all my reading, when the price of the subwoofer enclosure, with passive driver, is coupled with a decent Amp, any cost savings goes out the window. Then there's the whole, where to hide the amplifier and now one is dealing with the cost and inconvenience of extra interconnect cabling. confused.gif

Is one really being better served going passive with an outboard Amp?
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post #11 of 21 Old 02-25-2013, 06:23 AM
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A passive sub setup has many perks. Actual functionality and sound quality isn't really an issue here. Cost per usable wattage is a big factor though. A quality pro amp is typically cheaper than a plate amp. The wiring options with an outboard pro amp are extremely valuable. Adding a second sub is very simple to do with a pro amp. Another big factor is weight of the completed sub/enclosure. Adding a 20lb plate amp to an already 100lb enclosure/sub will make it even more difficult to move around.

I don't know what you're talking about Beeman, DIY is know to be cheaper in almost every case. Only time DIY doesn't produce a significant cost savings is when you're looking to build an equivalent commercial sub around $400 or lower. You could spend $400 building a DIY equivalent to a $400 commercial/ID subwoofer, or you can spend $400 building an eqivalent to a $1000 subwoofer. It really depends on what you do and how you do it.

OP, how about this combo?

Dayton 15" HF

Flat Pack enclosure

You can pick up a really nice subwoofer enclosure flat pack and simply add your driver and amp. This $280 setup would provide you quality bass to outperform most commercial/ID subs upwards of $800 or so.

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post #12 of 21 Old 02-25-2013, 06:27 AM
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Also, some full-range speakers do have "subwoofers" built into them. They may not be "true" subwoofers able to play at 10Hz with authority, but they are most likely drivers designed for lower frequencies than equivalently sized woofers, and are crossed over to handle all bass.

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post #13 of 21 Old 02-25-2013, 06:31 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Louquid View Post

I don't know what you're talking about Beeman, DIY is know to be cheaper in almost every case.

Just saying, I never mentioned anything about DIY. My comment was centric to a finished passive subwoofer coupled with an outboard Amp and my personal research has shown me one is better off with a completed, plugin ready subwoofer over a passive subwoofer and outboard Amp.

Just saying, my comment was intentionally centric to a 10" woofer (the size mentioned that I responded to) being considered a "subwoofer."

Sometimes folks just have to accept, their system is underpowered for what they want and they're either going have to accept the limitations of their system or they're going have to accept defeat, step up their game and acquire a system that represents their true wants and desires.

Just saying.

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post #14 of 21 Old 02-25-2013, 06:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BeeMan458 View Post

Just saying, I never mentioned anything about DIY. My comment was centric to a finished passive subwoofer coupled with an outboard Amp and my personal research has shown me one is better off with a completed, plugin ready subwoofer over a passive subwoofer and outboard Amp.

Just saying, my comment was intentionally centric to a 10" woofer (the size mentioned that I responded to) being considered a "subwoofer."

I see. I took that as you were naming a parts list, not saying a commercial passive subwoofer. My mistake.

I know what you mean about the 10" woofer/subwoofer deal. You were just trying to make it known that size doesn't automatically mean a speaker is a subwoofer.

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post #15 of 21 Old 02-25-2013, 07:08 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Louquid View Post

I see. I took that as you were naming a parts list, not saying a commercial passive subwoofer. My mistake.

I know what you mean about the 10" woofer/subwoofer deal. You were just trying to make it known that size doesn't automatically mean a speaker is a subwoofer.

Sorry for the confusion created by my writing style. LOL.....I do try. tongue.gif

I'm all about trying to get the best bang-for-the-buck. Recently, mostly for the learning experience, I upgraded the driver and radiator in each of our two, eighteen year old subwoofer enclosures that are tuned to 28Hz. I've been able to get to a strong, measured, 22Hz with this recent upgrade combination. biggrin.gif

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post #16 of 21 Old 02-25-2013, 07:35 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the replys. My speakers are NHT vt-2's that have built in side firing 10" drivers that go down to about 25hz. I am currently using a parasound 250W stereo amp to drive the subs (or woofers). The bass is very good and tight, just not room shaking deep and loud. The reason for wanting a passive sub is because I already have the amp. I can bridge it to power a single sub and still bi-amp my mains with my receiver.

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post #17 of 21 Old 02-25-2013, 07:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mnc View Post

Thanks for the replys. My speakers are NHT vt-2's that have built in side firing 10" drivers that go down to about 25hz. I am currently using a parasound 250W stereo amp to drive the subs (or woofers). The bass is very good and tight, just not room shaking deep and loud. The reason for wanting a passive sub is because I already have the amp. I can bridge it to power a single sub and still bi-amp my mains with my receiver.

I think going with the Dayton 15" and a flat pack enclosure from DIY Sound Group would serve you well. It will produce very tight and responsive bass while reaching down well below 25Hz. You should get usable output down to 16Hz, maybe lower if your room permits.

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post #18 of 21 Old 02-25-2013, 07:56 AM
 
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Originally Posted by mnc View Post

Thanks for the replys. My speakers are NHT vt-2's that have built in side firing 10" drivers that go down to about 25hz. I am currently using a parasound 250W stereo amp to drive the subs (or woofers). The bass is very good and tight, just not room shaking deep and loud. The reason for wanting a passive sub is because I already have the amp. I can bridge it to power a single sub and still bi-amp my mains with my receiver.

Have you measured your room's acoustical response to your main's output? Without measuring your room, you won't be able to tell if you're taking benefit of the added sub and amplifier or if having your subwoofer co-located in the main speaker cabinet is causing integration conflict; MLP nulls.. Good luck with getting it to all mesh. If ya know what I mean, it sounds kinda scary. wink.gif
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post #19 of 21 Old 02-25-2013, 08:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mnc View Post

Thanks for the replys. My speakers are NHT vt-2's that have built in side firing 10" drivers that go down to about 25hz. I am currently using a parasound 250W stereo amp to drive the subs (or woofers). The bass is very good and tight, just not room shaking deep and loud. The reason for wanting a passive sub is because I already have the amp. I can bridge it to power a single sub and still bi-amp my mains with my receiver.
That's a good idea, but you'll sooner find an honest politician than a passive sub. Building your own is probably the best way to get one. Go to the DIY section.

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post #20 of 21 Old 02-25-2013, 08:54 AM
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Not sure about a 15" passive sub for under $500, but you can get an 18" ChaseHT SS-18.1 passive sub for $500 + $95 shipping.

Just a thought... smile.gif


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post #21 of 21 Old 02-25-2013, 01:13 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks to everyone!

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