Best Sub to go with the Pioneer SP-PK52FS 5.0 system for ~400 - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 51 Old 11-07-2012, 09:14 PM - Thread Starter
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Hi everyone, I have been scouring the subwoofer forum now that I have ordered the Pioneer SP-PK52FS minus the subwoofer after hearing pio's subs are sub par. I spent about 500 on the 5.0 setup including speaker wire.
I know some people get bothered by others reasking which sub is the best for such and such a price, but with a million different threads and so suggestions I am having trouble sorting through it.
I will be connecting everything to my Yamaha Adventage RX-A710 AVR.
In terms of a subwoofer I am not really wanting to spend more than ~400 (aka no more on the subwoofer than what the whole 5.0 setup costs).
My room is 18x15 with 9ft high ceilings and a 5 x 8 nook in the back. listening position is about 7-8 ft from speakers.
I also have a small two person couch and a chair off to the sides of my center couch listening position for when friends are over. the back wall behind the couch has a 3 foot counter coming out and cabinets all along the wall (perfect for placing my surrounds on top of.
My HT system is used for Music Movies and Games. Music and Movies being the two main uses and being about equal in use. My music preferences are, well, I listen to most everything. Rock, Rap, Metal, Electronic music (EDM), etc. AC/DC is my favorite band and I also listen to a lot of EDM music and bass heavy stuff.
In terms of a subwoofer Im looking for one that will blend in with the pioneers well and will, whats the word...not sound like a sub? I essentially want a nice solid quality bass that isnt boomy or muddy causing me to look over at the subwoofer if that makes sense. That to me is more important I would say than the ability to shake the foundation of the house.
Dimensions of the subwoofer are not really an issue.

So far I have had these two suggested to me on another forum but I am not really making any head way there with the folks

Look at Energy S10.3

HSU STF-2

I am also open to buying used subwoofers off of audiogon, CL, or ebay seeing as there is a potential to get a subwoofer worth more than 400 with a sound much better than a brand new 400 dollar subwoofer would cost.
But either way new or used it fine with me.
I would be open to hearing suggestions for subs between 5-600 bucks only if they will make a HUGE difference but ideally I would like to stay within the 400 or less range.
Thanks!
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post #2 of 51 Old 11-07-2012, 10:28 PM
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i have the 1st series of those pioneers and bic f12.

i dont own it, but, take a look at the klipsch rw-12 on sale for $300 at newegg. after all my reading here it is pretty much the best $300 you can spend on a sub. i am considering going through the huge hassle of selling my bic f12 in order to get the klipsch rw-12 at that price. but if you are set on $400 plus budget then i am sure everyone will recommend that stf-2 over the klipsch

my thinking is you got an extremely good budget system in those pioneers. so why spend up to $600 on a sub that would be far too good for those pioneers. personally i wouldnt spend more than what you paid for those pioneers on a sub to go with them, unless you plan to upgrade from the pioneers in the near future
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post #3 of 51 Old 11-07-2012, 10:45 PM - Thread Starter
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Okay I will look into the Klipsch RW-12. It looks like it is a quality sub for the price. In terms of budget I am flexible. 300-400 is fine.

I agree, it doesn't make sense to spend more than I paid for the 5.0 system. Unless subs that cost less than the pioneer system are just that bad which i doubt. And unless I come across a bunch of money soon I don't plan on upgrading from the pioneers...unless I dislike them of course.

The STF-2 however is only 350...however I was just thinking since it doesn't appear to be available anywhere but from HSU I am assuming tax and shipping will put it at 400 bucks

I suppose also another question would be assuming the STF-2 is better than the RW-12, is that performance increase enough to make it worth spending an extra 100 dollars?
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post #4 of 51 Old 11-08-2012, 12:32 AM - Thread Starter
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Also what about the PA-150? I saw something on another thread about those
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post #5 of 51 Old 11-08-2012, 05:47 AM
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I personally think spending more on subs than mains, especially in a budget system, is appropriate.

you can make budget mainspeakers sound much better with a good sub.
you can't make good mainspeakers sound much better with a budget sub.


MrSmithers in KC has the $400 Andrew Jones Pioneer speaker set that is always on newgg sales and a Seaton Submersive HP. That's a five to one ratio on sub cost vs mains cost. atypical, but he loves his system. After going to a couple meets with him - speaker and subs, I have full confidence he knows his stuff.


The RW-12D is a great bargin, as you've read. If it makes bad noises or calls attention to itself you underbought subwoofer.

If you don't want a sub that will ever audibly show its limits, when you turn it up, beyond what it can handle then something sealed and amp limited like the Epik Legend might be your huckleberry.

Personally in your case, with your general budget, I'd try to buy 2 RW-12Ds and call it a day. Useful in room extension to 22hz or so and inexpensive. Two will help smooth bass sound all over your room to cover your substantially different seating areas. The RW-12d vs something like the 10.3 means you get the extra 10hz of extension for movie watching, (basically usable extension to 22hz vs 32hz) which is definately worth the $200 uptick in cost for a pair of either option, at least for movie watching.

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

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post #6 of 51 Old 11-08-2012, 02:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archaea View Post

I personally think spending more on subs than mains, especially in a budget system, is appropriate.
you can make budget mainspeakers sound much better with a good sub.
you can't make good mainspeakers sound much better with a budget sub.
MrSmithers in KC has the $400 Andrew Jones Pioneer speaker set that is always on newgg sales and a Seaton Submersive HP. That's a five to one ratio on sub cost vs mains cost. atypical, but he loves his system. After going to a couple meets with him - speaker and subs, I have full confidence he knows his stuff.
The RW-12D is a great bargin, as you've read. If it makes bad noises or calls attention to itself you underbought subwoofer.
If you don't want a sub that will ever audibly show its limits, when you turn it up, beyond what it can handle then something sealed and amp limited like the Epik Legend might be your huckleberry.
Personally in your case, with your general budget, I'd try to buy 2 RW-12Ds and call it a day. Useful in room extension to 22hz or so and inexpensive. Two will help smooth bass sound all over your room to cover your substantially different seating areas. The RW-12d vs something like the 10.3 means you get the extra 10hz of extension for movie watching, (basically usable extension to 22hz vs 32hz) which is definately worth the $200 uptick in cost for a pair of either option, at least for movie watching.

Thank you for the advice.

I don't mind a subwoofer showing some limits I guess compared to my last sub which showed its limits very easily I just dont want something that shows its limits too easily. My last sub was a mirage sealed design with two 8 inch drivers setup just like that Epik. In terms of the bass dispersion through the room it changed greatly and was very noticeable depending on where one was so I am not sure I like that design style. However I have not head the Epik so I cannot judge it. From what I know sealed subs tend to be better for rock type music and ported better for bass heavy music. Granted that could be because ported tends to seem to make things shake a bit more or may be more boomy giving the impression of a louder bass sound.

Out of curiosity will bass travel further with a ported sub than with a sealed? what I am asking is will people that are in another part of the house be able to feel/hear a ported sub more than a sealed?

I am hesitant on buying to subwoofers probably for more of a social reason because two seems like overkill, especially with subs that big. would the bass response throughout the room be that much better with two RW-12Ds versus say the STF2 or the Outlaw LFM-Plus or an SVS or the VTF1? I know something like the outlaw will go lower in terms of Hz, Does that difference from 25 to 16 make the experience that much more enjoyable? Also how is the Epik in terms of bass response throughout the room. Most of the time I will be in front of the tv so the side couches arent a HUGE importance if the difference in bass response throughout the room doesnt change a big amount with one sub compared to two

Also my AVR on has one subwoofer RCA connection...unless there is another way to connect two subs.
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post #7 of 51 Old 11-08-2012, 02:27 PM
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yes, the difference from 22hz bottom to 15hz bottom is noticable and significant. But I doubt you'll have enough output at 15hz in your room with a single $650-$750 sub to matter as much as one would like.

your observation on bass dispersion through the room changing greatly on your single mirage sub is EXACTLY what two subs helps avoid.

I'll leave your ported vs. sealed for which type of music statement alone - it's subjective, and in blind testing hard to even tell the difference between ported and sealed aside from actual output, of which ported subs have 6dB more out put down to port tune, and nothing but distortion below that.

Two of these 12" subwoofers don't seem big/overkill to me in any way --- but again that's subjective. Your choice.

I absolutely would prefer two subs to one, and most would, and do as well after hearing the scenarios.

An RCA Y splitter is all you need to split your sub signal to two different subs.
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=rca+y+splitter

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

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post #8 of 51 Old 11-08-2012, 02:48 PM - Thread Starter
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Eventually i will be moving the computer to the office once I get my networking fully setup

i am standing where the door is
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post #9 of 51 Old 11-08-2012, 03:00 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archaea View Post

yes, the difference from 22hz bottom to 15hz bottom is noticable and significant. But I doubt you'll have enough output at 15hz in your room with a single $650-$750 sub to matter as much as one would like.
your observation on bass dispersion through the room changing greatly on your single mirage sub is EXACTLY what two subs helps avoid.
I'll leave your ported vs. sealed for which type of music statement alone - it's subjective, and in blind testing hard to even tell the difference between ported and sealed aside from actual output, of which ported subs have 6dB more out put down to port tune, and nothing but distortion below that.
Two of these 12" subwoofers don't seem big/overkill to me in any way --- but again that's subjective. Your choice.
I absolutely would prefer two subs to one, and most would, and do as well after hearing the scenarios.
An RCA Y splitter is all you need to split your sub signal to two different subs.
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=rca+y+splitter

Thank you

1. Would a single RW 12D create a lot of spots in my room where bass dispersion is is weaker or stronger than others?
2. Would the difference between one RW12D and two be very noticeable in your opinion? The bass dispersion with the mirage sub was very noticable in my old bed room at my parents house which was like 10x11. In this room it seemed to be less noticable. I live in a rambler with my gf and her parents. A section was built onto the house before they moved in and after they moved in their grandpa lived in this end. I am slightly worried the bass might travel to their bedroom but their bedroom is like 50-75 feet from the room where the HT will be. I have heard sealed bass stays within rooms better. I need to do some tests to see if i can hear my logitech 2.1 speakers in their bedroom seeing as the bass actually gets quite loud.
3. If i decided to go with one sub as opposed to two RW12Ds what would you recommend in the 300-600 dollar price range. and also for around the 400 price range?
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post #10 of 51 Old 11-08-2012, 03:44 PM
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epik legend is my alternate recommendation for your room.

you'll have hot spotting in you room with seating positions like you do with any single sub. dual opposed subs like the epik help that a wee bit over single driver solutions.

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

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post #11 of 51 Old 11-08-2012, 04:22 PM
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I have the first series pioneers and 2 rw12d subs, along with some mirage nanosats for surrounds and front heights. all of my speakers cost about $350, the two subs cost $600, and it is far from overkill. if you think about it, for one, the subs come with an amp, the other speakers in your system do not have an amp, their power comes from the receiver. so a sub is basically to parts you are buying, an amp and a speaker. second, the low frequencies is what takes the most power to reproduce. treble is easy and takes less power, bass is harder with bigger waves and takes a lot more power. based on these two points, you need to spend more $ on reproducing the low frequencies vs the mid and higher frequencies.

IMG_5038.jpg

i just added the second rw12d to my theater room about a week ago. the dispersion is much better. with only one sub before, if i stood in a certain spot, the bass was heavy, in another spot, the bass was weak. with 2 subs now, it is very even through out the room. all seating positions experience almost the same bass, where before some positions had too much bass and others were lacking bass. also, the feel is better. with 2 12" cones moving air, you can feel it more that with just one speaker compressing. a second sub did also add a little bit of volume, not a lot, but more importantly, it now has a flatter frequency response, goes a little lower, and is much more dispersed. i highly recommend to subs. good luck.
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post #12 of 51 Old 11-08-2012, 04:46 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archaea View Post

epik legend is my alternate recommendation for your room.
you'll have hot spotting in you room with seating positions like you do with any single sub. dual opposed subs like the epik help that a wee bit over single driver solutions.

Would you say sealed subs keep the bass inside a room better than ported? I honestly do not know how loud two RW12Ds would be and how far the bass would travel at louder volumes.

Also I was doing some reading on a couple other threads such as your thread with the sub roundup for different subs at different price points. You guys talked a lot about the EQ and such with the Epik legend and there were things said about it that made me think that its not that great???

With the Epik Legend I will have spotting in my room and the epik legend will help with that a bit. However, Archaea, from your experience, how bad will the spotting be from one epik legend and how much of a difference in bass dispersion will the difference between an epik legend and two rw-12ds make? I guess what I am trying to get at is how much better dispersion will i get from two rw12ds versus one epik legend, Im asking this because it might not be worth it for me to get 2 subs versus the one if the difference is small.

Btw the epik legend will cost me 580 including shipping.
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post #13 of 51 Old 11-08-2012, 04:56 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by mgrotel View Post

I have the first series pioneers and 2 rw12d subs, along with some mirage nanosats for surrounds and front heights. all of my speakers cost about $350, the two subs cost $600, and it is far from overkill. if you think about it, for one, the subs come with an amp, the other speakers in your system do not have an amp, their power comes from the receiver. so a sub is basically to parts you are buying, an amp and a speaker. second, the low frequencies is what takes the most power to reproduce. treble is easy and takes less power, bass is harder with bigger waves and takes a lot more power. based on these two points, you need to spend more $ on reproducing the low frequencies vs the mid and higher frequencies.
IMG_5038.jpg
i just added the second rw12d to my theater room about a week ago. the dispersion is much better. with only one sub before, if i stood in a certain spot, the bass was heavy, in another spot, the bass was weak. with 2 subs now, it is very even through out the room. all seating positions experience almost the same bass, where before some positions had too much bass and others were lacking bass. also, the feel is better. with 2 12" cones moving air, you can feel it more that with just one speaker compressing. a second sub did also add a little bit of volume, not a lot, but more importantly, it now has a flatter frequency response, goes a little lower, and is much more dispersed. i highly recommend to subs. good luck.

Wow you have an extremely nice looking and clean setup. I would love to have one that nice and clean. Maybe I just need to clean a bit...my gf tends to cause my cleaning to revert back to disorganization haha.

I have no idea how those front heights work, looks like an interesting concept though.

Thank you though, very informative.

I know this is very hard to describe. but how far does the bass from those two subwoofers carry?



Okay so I am standing where the black couch is in the picture i took above. From the couch to the windowed door is 35 feet. If you look to the left that is our bedroom. where the pictures are on the back wall, through that wall is my gfs parents walk in closet then their bedroom. If you go through the windowed door turn left and go about 10 feet you reach the door of their bedroom and about another 10 feet to their bed. I brought up this point because sometimes we stay up late when they go to bed and I dont wanna wake them up. I need to bring my logitech speakers and do some tests to see what I can hear though.
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post #14 of 51 Old 11-08-2012, 05:39 PM
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I think you have a nice space too! I do think you are under estimating how loud these options are, I'm sure you will rattle their bed with the bass though, lol
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post #15 of 51 Old 11-08-2012, 06:04 PM - Thread Starter
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I think you have a nice space too! I do think you are under estimating how loud these options are, I'm sure you will rattle their bed with the bass though, lol

Oh hahahaha. well guess at night I will have to turn my system down

If you look down the hall towards the glass door, right before you enter into the open library part on the right is an office. I had my logitech setup in there at one point for some testing blasting the sound super high as well as the bass and it was noticable in their bedroom but not to bad considering how high i had it. Im hoping maybe the bass wouldnt travel too far. But im probably being overly optimistic considering how much rumble these big HT subs have haha
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If I were you, I'd do what I did and get just one rw12d for 300$ and see how you like it. If you new more bass, get another one. They are on sale for $300 very often. But that's just what I would do.
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If I were you, I'd do what I did and get just one rw12d for 300$ and see how you like it. If you new more bass, get another one. They are on sale for $300 very often. But that's just what I would do.

How bad was your bass spotting in terms of spots being to high or low with bass response?
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post #18 of 51 Old 11-08-2012, 07:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archaea View Post

I personally think spending more on subs than mains, especially in a budget system, is appropriate.
you can make budget mainspeakers sound much better with a good sub.
you can't make good mainspeakers sound much better with a budget sub.
MrSmithers in KC has the $400 Andrew Jones Pioneer speaker set that is always on newgg sales and a Seaton Submersive HP. That's a five to one ratio on sub cost vs mains cost. atypical, but he loves his system. After going to a couple meets with him - speaker and subs, I have full confidence he knows his stuff.
The RW-12D is a great bargin, as you've read. If it makes bad noises or calls attention to itself you underbought subwoofer.
If you don't want a sub that will ever audibly show its limits, when you turn it up, beyond what it can handle then something sealed and amp limited like the Epik Legend might be your huckleberry.
Personally in your case, with your general budget, I'd try to buy 2 RW-12Ds and call it a day. Useful in room extension to 22hz or so and inexpensive. Two will help smooth bass sound all over your room to cover your substantially different seating areas. The RW-12d vs something like the 10.3 means you get the extra 10hz of extension for movie watching, (basically usable extension to 22hz vs 32hz) which is definately worth the $200 uptick in cost for a pair of either option, at least for movie watching.

does MrSmithers in KC have a thread on his setup? im curious and would like to read it if you can get me a link.
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post #19 of 51 Old 11-08-2012, 07:59 PM
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How bad was your bass spotting in terms of spots being to high or low with bass response?

It was pretty noticeable, but I bet every room is different, you might be fine with only one. Where do you live? If local to me I'd would offer to have you over to listen if you wanted
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post #20 of 51 Old 11-08-2012, 08:03 PM - Thread Starter
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It was pretty noticeable, but I bet every room is different, you might be fine with only one. Where do you live? If local to me I'd would offer to have you over to listen if you wanted

what are the dimensions of your room?

I live in the Seattle area
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post #21 of 51 Old 11-08-2012, 08:18 PM
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It's about 15x20ish, maybe a tad smaller, but has two hallways connecting a bathroom and a stairwell, so decent sized. I'm not in Seattle.
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post #22 of 51 Old 11-08-2012, 10:42 PM - Thread Starter
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It's about 15x20ish, maybe a tad smaller, but has two hallways connecting a bathroom and a stairwell, so decent sized. I'm not in Seattle.

Oh okay based on my room size would you say I might have as many low high spots as you? since mine isnt connected to a hall
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post #23 of 51 Old 11-10-2012, 04:20 PM - Thread Starter
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So i used my logitech 2.1 speaker system z-2300 that has a ported sub with an 8 inch driver.

There are and were dispersion issues with the bass in my room. The sub was placed to the right of my tv close to the wall. the driver is in the front and the port is on the left.

My report: the dispersion issues weren't as bad as I thought. If you were directly to the left or right of the sub distance not counting the bass was very loud compared to the center seating position. However, people will not be sitting to the left or right of the subwoofer. Except me at my computer however for movies i move to the center. with music i tend to stay over here. But i plan on moving my computer to my office once I get my network setup so i can stream stuff to my entertainment center. I did the test by moving in a half circle if that makes sense. Started on one side of the sub and moved in a circular manner from one seating position to the next. The bass in the middle was good, It was the least strong in terms of that air moving feeling around your ears but the bass itself sounded fine. The side chairs had a bit stronger bass than the center but since they are not directly on the sides of the sub it wasn't too bad. I could potentially remedy this by moving the seating positions back a slight amount. bass was somewhat louder in the nook but thats where the sink and fridges are and i dont care about sound there.

Overall I would say the dispersion issues didnt effect the seating positions too terribly much. Sides could have been better. I assume with the epik subs the dispersion issues of one sub are less noticeable. but I wonder if the spots where there are dispersion issues would be in a different location because the subwoofer design is different.
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post #24 of 51 Old 11-13-2012, 10:31 AM
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Does anyone think the Polk Audio PSW125 is good at $140?
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post #25 of 51 Old 11-13-2012, 07:57 PM - Thread Starter
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Does anyone think the Polk Audio PSW125 is good at $140?

http://www.avsforum.com/t/1425179/the-subwoofer-recommendation-by-pricepoint-thread
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post #26 of 51 Old 11-14-2012, 08:43 PM
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For $400 why not get a couple BIC F-12 sub woofers. As has been stated dual subs really help even response out, and this way you wouldn't be over budget.

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post #27 of 51 Old 11-15-2012, 04:28 PM - Thread Starter
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For $400 why not get a couple BIC F-12 sub woofers. As has been stated dual subs really help even response out, and this way you wouldn't be over budget.

Because the BICs only go to like 30 Hz if im not mistaken
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post #28 of 51 Old 11-15-2012, 05:31 PM
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If I were you seal, I'd get an rw12d when it's $300, then go from there. That is my advice.
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post #29 of 51 Old 11-15-2012, 10:02 PM - Thread Starter
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If I were you seal, I'd get an rw12d when it's $300, then go from there. That is my advice.

I am either gonna go with two RW-12Ds or one Legend...Im pretty on the fence though.

mrgrotel, what is your opinion of the SQ of the two RW-12D's you own. The subwoofer shootout thing mentions the rw being somewhat boomy and muddy at times. I will be doing a lot of HT but I want something that does great with music too. Fidelity is also important to me haha.
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post #30 of 51 Old 11-15-2012, 10:09 PM
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Certain spots were boomy with only one, but I haven't found any boomy spots with two of them. I'm new to home theater, but not new to car audio, specifically subs. The bass is clean and of good quality and fills the room really nicely
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