A comparison of three tactile transducers - ButtKicker Mini LFE vs. Clark Synthesis TST209 vs. Aura Bass Shaker Pro - Page 8 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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Old 12-05-2014, 08:54 AM
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I am trying to decide between Clark and Aura due to budget constraints. Your comparison actually has me leaning towards Aura because of your comment regarding the Clarks feeling like they are always on. If these are correctly crossed over and the LPF and HPF are set, what causes this difference? Is it a sensitivity thing? Like the Aura require a louder "volume" at a given frequency to shake than the Clarks, or is it as simple that since the Clarks shake harder its more noticeable than the aura's?
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Old 12-05-2014, 09:20 AM - Thread Starter
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I don't know that the auras particularly struck me - at least that I remember one way or the other to that always on effect, but I do recall that with the buttkicker vs the clark.

The clark is basically a speaker that produces tactile feedback in the same way a speaker does. If signal is applied it moved.
The buttkicker is more like a rod that is driven back and forth from what I understand. It takes a little more power to get it started - or perhaps a little more power to be noticable anyway. The clark is a good transducer. We perhaps just had it turned up too much to be as subtle as I prefer. Now that I understand a little more about the transducers I'd like to retry my experiment again - but at this point it probably won't happen. I have nearfield 18" subwoofers, and they beat the crud out of anything I've felt from the transducer world. --- the only thing better than neafield 18" are nearfied 21" or 24" subs.
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Old 12-05-2014, 12:33 PM
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Here is a member who recently purchased and measured the Aura's vibration capability on his couch in the ULF thread. 4 of these were very capable on his system; strong down to 13hz!
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Old 12-05-2014, 01:29 PM
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I had six of the transducer at the time of the test Dom. The Aura Pro's are mounted on 3 large boards in the sectional.
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Old 02-04-2015, 10:30 AM
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I have used Clark Platinums for about couple of years and more more recently have tried Aura's current offerings due to mounting constraints of some new home theater recliners.

I prefer the "subtle" feel of augmenting subwoofers as opposed to some sort of theme park experience.

If your goal is the subtle effect, I would say that Aura can offer just about the exact same subjective experience as the vastly more expensive Platinum Clark's. The overall experience to me is really indistinguishable in any way that you would consider meaningful. I don't know if the longevity of the devices will vary since I don't know the build quality of the Aura transducers. Since the construction of these things is fairly simplistic, I don't see how they would stop working unless burned out with too much power.

I am currently using a crown XLS1000 and it is pretty sufficient and can do basic crossover tasks. I am running the Aura with a 50hz high pass crossover which is pretty effective.

My subwoofers powered by 10000 watts and and 8 15" drivers can EASILY make your body move but the transducers help at nights and not to irritate the hell out of neighbors. Subwoofer vibrations don't automatically resonate with your couch evenly either which the transducers help with.


Hopefully this review helps...

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Old 02-04-2015, 05:14 PM
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I can see your point on the comparison of the Clark and Aura Pro. The Clark and some other brand report a response down to the 5-10 Hz but, those numbers can't be done with enough force even though the RMS wattage is much greater than the Arua Pro. The transducer are not RMS limited since they use stronger amps, the problem is excrusion. The Aura Pro's are an excellent choice for HT. I have 8 under a large sectional and get great vibrations.
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Old 02-04-2015, 05:34 PM
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Yes not only are the aura bass shaker's sufficient but really not much material is recorded in the 10-20hz range. Even if it was, the vibrations would have a good chance of rattling some part of your couch and causing problems.

the 20-50hz range via the aura feels pretty decent, and I don't feel like I am missing anything in the overall experience. in fact, for music it almost seems like its unnecessarily distracting on some tracks that are recorded too hot. I plan on setting up to not 12v trigger the bass shakers for music.
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Old 02-07-2015, 10:27 AM
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I use two Auro Pro's per recliner in my HT and that is a lot of shaking going on. I watched Fury yesterday and WOW the explosions rattled my teeth I really liked how the far off explosions you could barely hear I also gently felt. I'm using an Inter-M Reference Amp and it drives 8 total Auro's.

My riser seats which were made with a mounting board for shakers, carpet coming soon:
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Old 06-07-2015, 02:54 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archaea View Post
I haven't felt the BK LFE transducer on a riser so I can't comment - but i will say that the mini's in a recliner are fun -- just be prepared to non stop tinker if you are like me.

MusiciansFriend and GuitarCenter run 15% off coupons regularly at holidays and are probably the cheapest place to buy your kit if you can take advantage of a 15% off coupon.

I have felt a BK LFE on a riser at @Luke Kamp 's since this post and it was excellent.

Luke played the Edge of Tomorrow intro with the 10hz note, and the full size buttkicker LFE transducer rattled the riser around perfectly. I like the Buttkicker LFE on the riser better than I like the buttkickers mounted directly to my chair. It feels more natural.

"Without subs it's just background music - with subs it's the main event!"
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Old 06-07-2015, 03:15 PM - Thread Starter
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I decided to sell my four buttkickers because my nearfield 18" subs do everything the buttkickers do, and then + some.

I had two friends last night and was comparing the difference between the nearfield 18" subs and the buttkickers and I asked them which they liked better. One liked the subs better, one was indifferent. I liked the subs better myself. One friend asked how much the price difference is. I said the buttkickers cost $90 each, the subs cost about $550 each.


He said he'd just go with the buttkickers with that price delta. But to me, and to the other friend, I'd rather have the nearfield subs.


Any rate - I'm selling my four on ebay - so if anyone is interested you can look up the auction link here.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/-/221795469208?


They work perfectly and look new - just outclassed by my nearfield 18" sealed subs IMO.

"Without subs it's just background music - with subs it's the main event!"
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Old 06-08-2015, 12:31 PM
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Great, so after silently researching this thread and others to make a decision on my first transducers, I pulled the trigger on 2 minis and 1 advance with an iNuke 1000dsp a couple of days ago. Would've definitely bought your set if they were available last week. Oh well, I only paid about $80 more for the transducers, I guess....... and I have the ability to return them if I choose to, so not the end of the world.
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Old 06-16-2015, 08:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archaea View Post
I decided to sell my four buttkickers because my nearfield 18" subs do everything the buttkickers do, and then + some.

I had two friends last night and was comparing the difference between the nearfield 18" subs and the buttkickers and I asked them which they liked better. One liked the subs better, one was indifferent. I liked the subs better myself. One friend asked how much the price difference is. I said the buttkickers cost $90 each, the subs cost about $550 each.


He said he'd just go with the buttkickers with that price delta. But to me, and to the other friend, I'd rather have the nearfield subs.


Any rate - I'm selling my four on ebay - so if anyone is interested you can look up the auction link here.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/-/221795469208?


They work perfectly and look new - just outclassed by my nearfield 18" sealed subs IMO.
Archaea,

I think I just bought your Clark transducer on flea-bay. Curious before giving up on transducers and going w/nearfield subs (BTW, a very cool idea); Did you ever try low-passing the Clark at ~40Hz?

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Old 06-16-2015, 08:27 AM - Thread Starter
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@cuzed2,

You did!
and I didn't.

I used the Clark only shortly when I was testing with it, in this thread. You are getting a practically new unit, it's been in the box nearly the entire time I've owned it. I had some intent to install it later to play with it more, to try to fine tune better, but never did. If it didn't sell in this auction, at the price I was asking, I was going to go ahead and install it again, since I also recently sold the four buttkickers that were installed for the last couple years. I hope you enjoy it and it suits your purposes well!

I'll be shipping it out today.


-------------------------------
Ultimately, for my part, I might be done with transduscers, I've experienced all the major brands at this point, and IMO sealed nearfield subs beat the transducers in everyway - even the mighty $500 Crowson. I do understand nearfield subs can't work for everyone, space wise but when they can work (placed directly behind the seat, firing directly into the back of the chair) - they really are the superior solution in my opinion. Caveats are the nearfield subs have got to be big (18", 21" 24" preferably - or if smaller - placed ridiculously close - so close you can't really recline your seat), they've got to dig low - plenty of cone excursion capability, and they've got to be CLOSE, so you can easily feel the acoustic energy the cone movement puts off. If you move the sub out two foot, it's pretty much worthless as a nearfield tactile experience, because that acoustic energy gets lost.

"Without subs it's just background music - with subs it's the main event!"
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Last edited by Archaea; 06-16-2015 at 08:30 AM.
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Old 06-16-2015, 11:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archaea View Post
@cuzed2,

You did!
and I didn't.

I used the Clark only shortly when I was testing with it, in this thread. You are getting a practically new unit, it's been in the box nearly the entire time I've owned it. I had some intent to install it later to play with it more, to try to fine tune better, but never did. If it didn't sell in this auction, at the price I was asking, I was going to go ahead and install it again, since I also recently sold the four buttkickers that were installed for the last couple years. I hope you enjoy it and it suits your purposes well!

I'll be shipping it out today.


-------------------------------
Ultimately, for my part, I might be done with transduscers, I've experienced all the major brands at this point, and IMO sealed nearfield subs beat the transducers in everyway - even the mighty $500 Crowson. I do understand nearfield subs can't work for everyone, space wise but when they can work (placed directly behind the seat, firing directly into the back of the chair) - they really are the superior solution in my opinion. Caveats are the nearfield subs have got to be big (18", 21" 24" preferably - or if smaller - placed ridiculously close - so close you can't really recline your seat), they've got to dig low - plenty of cone excursion capability, and they've got to be CLOSE, so you can easily feel the acoustic energy the cone movement puts off. If you move the sub out two foot, it's pretty much worthless as a nearfield tactile experience, because that acoustic energy gets lost.
Archaea,

Wow; that was a quick response! I did skim thru your transducer thread and got a pretty good feel for your decision and direction. By the way that thread is very good, and well done. Unfortunately, I do not have the space to implement a near-field sub solution.

So at this point I am happy picking up where you left off with the Clark transducers. In fact; I JUST picked up a 2nd TST209 (open box unit from PE), and 50Hz f-mod low-pass filters to experiment with.

Previously I was using original Aura shakers (non-pro units) with no filtering and thought they worked well enough for what they cost, at least as a novelty. However; when doing some crude vibration/shake tests with some LF sweep tones; I confirmed that they were providing "shake" between 30Hz~100Hz, which was no longer feeling realistic for me.

Will be interesting to see if I can make it more realistic by "shifting the shake" down to a range of ~15hz to <50 Hz? Perhaps then it will be a better accompaniment to my 3-SVS 16hz cylinders...

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Old 06-17-2015, 01:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archaea View Post
@cuzed2,

You did!
and I didn't.

I used the Clark only shortly when I was testing with it, in this thread. You are getting a practically new unit, it's been in the box nearly the entire time I've owned it. I had some intent to install it later to play with it more, to try to fine tune better, but never did. If it didn't sell in this auction, at the price I was asking, I was going to go ahead and install it again, since I also recently sold the four buttkickers that were installed for the last couple years. I hope you enjoy it and it suits your purposes well!

I'll be shipping it out today.


-------------------------------
Ultimately, for my part, I might be done with transduscers, I've experienced all the major brands at this point, and IMO sealed nearfield subs beat the transducers in everyway - even the mighty $500 Crowson. I do understand nearfield subs can't work for everyone, space wise but when they can work (placed directly behind the seat, firing directly into the back of the chair) - they really are the superior solution in my opinion. Caveats are the nearfield subs have got to be big (18", 21" 24" preferably - or if smaller - placed ridiculously close - so close you can't really recline your seat), they've got to dig low - plenty of cone excursion capability, and they've got to be CLOSE, so you can easily feel the acoustic energy the cone movement puts off. If you move the sub out two foot, it's pretty much worthless as a nearfield tactile experience, because that acoustic energy gets lost.

IMO the Crowson has a lot more energy down low (below 20hz) than the nearfield sub. Above 20hz the nearfield sub smokes it. I think you are too heavy for the Crowson. Watching a scene like The Incredible Hulk or the beach scene from X Men the difference is massive between having the Crowson and not having it.

So... I went over to Luke's to experience the buttkicker and hear his new 1099's. I really liked the 1099's and loved the feel on the riser...I felt like it was a little weak compared to what you described but it turned out his transducer was off the whole time and he didn't realize it until after I left!! Oh well, maybe next time. Sounds like something I would do when demoing something for a friend. I remember when you guys came over to hear the Submersives I had one of them muted the whole time.
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Old 06-17-2015, 03:28 PM - Thread Starter
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IMO the Crowson has a lot more energy down low (below 20hz) than the nearfield sub.
Perhaps, but so far I'm not inclined to agree with what you've showed me so far. That Crowson is nothing short of excellent, but more subtle than my three nearfield IMO. We'll have to do some more comparisons for you to convince me.


Quote:
I think you are too heavy for the Crowson.
hey hey hey!





Quote:
So... I went over to Luke's to experience the buttkicker and hear his new 1099's. I really liked the 1099's and loved the feel on the riser...I felt like it was a little weak compared to what you described but it turned out his transducer was off the whole time and he didn't realize it until after I left!! Oh well, maybe next time. Sounds like something I would do when demoing something for a friend. I remember when you guys came over to hear the Submersives I had one of them muted the whole time.

Yeah you do need to give it another go. Luke told me. Ha we've all done stuff like that!
I do think he's full size buttkicker is very cool on the riser!

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Old 06-18-2015, 08:06 AM
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Originally Posted by cuzed2 View Post
Archaea,

Wow; that was a quick response! I did skim thru your transducer thread and got a pretty good feel for your decision and direction. By the way that thread is very good, and well done. Unfortunately, I do not have the space to implement a near-field sub solution.

So at this point I am happy picking up where you left off with the Clark transducers. In fact; I JUST picked up a 2nd TST209 (open box unit from PE), and 50Hz f-mod low-pass filters to experiment with.

Previously I was using original Aura shakers (non-pro units) with no filtering and thought they worked well enough for what they cost, at least as a novelty. However; when doing some crude vibration/shake tests with some LF sweep tones; I confirmed that they were providing "shake" between 30Hz~100Hz, which was no longer feeling realistic for me.

Will be interesting to see if I can make it more realistic by "shifting the shake" down to a range of ~15hz to <50 Hz? Perhaps then it will be a better accompaniment to my 3-SVS 16hz cylinders...
Jonathan,
Big Thank You! I received a like new TST209 deliver this AM
Craig
(aka cuzed2)

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Old 06-18-2015, 08:11 AM - Thread Starter
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Good!

Enjoy!

"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
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Old 06-22-2015, 02:18 PM
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Archaea,

So at this point I am happy picking up where you left off with the Clark transducers. In fact; I JUST picked up a 2nd TST209 (open box unit from PE), and 50Hz f-mod low-pass filters to experiment with.

Previously I was using original Aura shakers (non-pro units) with no filtering and thought they worked well enough for what they cost, at least as a novelty. However; when doing some crude vibration/shake tests with some LF sweep tones; I confirmed that they were providing "shake" between 30Hz~100Hz, which was no longer feeling realistic for me.

Will be interesting to see if I can make it more realistic by "shifting the shake" down to a range of ~15hz to <50 Hz? Perhaps then it will be a better accompaniment to my 3-SVS 16hz cylinders...


So I received both of the TST209s and the f-mod 50Hz filters and made some quick comparisons over the weekend. This was done with the transducers on the floor and running sweeps (to make sure they work - keep in mind one was a PE open box special), and to see how they compare. The Clarks both work just fine and were comparable to each other . However; when comparing the Clarks to the Auras

Going from 15Hz up what I found:
- the non-pro auras did not have any significant "shake" until they hit 35 Hz
- The Clarks started to shake at 17Hz,, and were strong from 20Hz up
- Adding in the 50Hz lo-pass filters attenuated the shake nicely from about 55Hz and up

Next - to get them mounted under my Berklines. another Thanks to Archaea for the excellent mounting photos in this thread

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