HSU ULS-15 Dual Drive, Seaton Submersive HP, or DIY - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 25 Old 01-30-2013, 09:24 AM - Thread Starter
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I've been PMing a lot of folks with this question and have gotten a lot of helpful answers. However, I'm still on the fence. My current situation is I have a HSU ULS-15 + MBM-12 and while I'm not UNhappy, I got the upgrade bug and want a little more IMPACT than the ULS can give me while keeping the SQ I already have. I've tried a PSA XS30 and SVS PB12-NSD and while both are great, they're just not giving me what I'm looking for - more output with great SQ. I've looked at the Rythmik FV15HP but it's just WAY TOO BIG given the way it must be oriented in the room, so no recommendations as I'm sure that would be the go-to response. Moving on, I've been considering the following options...

1. Add a second ULS-15 (Off the list)
My current ULS-15 bottoms out with ULFs at moderate volumes, even with the ULF trim set close to 50hz. My concern is even if I add a second I'll still have the same problem. I would not co-locate, the second ULS would go on the right side of the room. My problem may be related to Audyssey blowing out the ULFs...I may have to rerun to see if it helps at all.

2. Seaton SubM HP
When I placed the XS30 where the ULS was I got a relatively flat response, but just not the overall sound I was looking for, especially at higher volumes. I believe the sound quality and performance of the SubM would give me this.

3. JTR Cap S1
It fits my size requirement and gives me the output. However, I'm not sure how it compares to the SubM in SQ. I believe I read that it's close but I can't find the post.

4. DIY Two 3 cu ft cabinets, each with 15" drivers
Considering the Dayton 15HO or SI HT 15D4. Would need to find an amp, perhaps an EP2500 or SA1000. Cheapest option (if I sell my current equipment) and probably the most fun. smile.gif

Below is a diagram of the room. HELP!

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post #2 of 25 Old 01-30-2013, 12:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lewdogg View Post

I've been PMing a lot of folks with this question and have gotten a lot of helpful answers. However, I'm still on the fence. My current situation is I have a HSU ULS-15 + MBM-12 and while I'm not UNhappy, I got the upgrade bug and want a little more IMPACT than the ULS can give me while keeping the SQ I already have. I've tried a PSA XS30 and SVS PB12-NSD and while both are great, they're just not giving me what I'm looking for - more output with great SQ. I've looked at the Rythmik FV15HP but it's just WAY TOO BIG given the way it must be oriented in the room, so no recommendations as I'm sure that would be the go-to response. Moving on, I've been considering the following options...

1. Add a second ULS-15
My current ULS-15 bottoms out with ULFs at moderate volumes, even with the ULF trim set close to 50hz. My concern is even if I add a second I'll still have the same problem. I would not co-locate, the second ULS would go on the right side of the room. My problem may be related to Audyssey blowing out the ULFs...I may have to rerun to see if it helps at all.

2. Seaton SubM HP
When I placed the XS30 where the ULS was I got a relatively flat response, but just not the overall sound I was looking for, especially at higher volumes. I believe the sound quality and performance of the SubM would give me this.

3. JTR Cap S1
It fits my size requirement and gives me the output. However, I'm not sure how it compares to the SubM in SQ. I believe I read that it's close but I can't find the post.

4. DIY Two 3 cu ft cabinets, each with 15" drivers
Considering the Dayton 15HO or SI HT 15D4. Would need to find an amp, perhaps an EP2500 or SA1000. Cheapest option (if I sell my current equipment) and probably the most fun. smile.gif

Below is a diagram of the room. HELP!


Lew!!!!! It's your old pal AL. I have never had issues with bottoming out. But I do own more than one. You would really appreciate having multiple ULS-15s. Looking at your diagram the mbm should be position in the right corner of your room by the couch and loveseat. This will give you much better impact than where it is now. Then you should add 2 more ULS-15s placing one where the mbm is now and the second one to the left of the loveseat. You would then get what you are looking for. Send me a PM if you want to talk on the phone.

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post #3 of 25 Old 01-30-2013, 01:40 PM
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I've never bottomed mine out and I have driven them pretty hard. If it is bottoming out at moderate volume levels (and I didn't even know it could bottom out very audibly as it is a underhung driver design) my guess is Audyssey or whatever room correction EQ you are using has really boosted the deep frequencies hard. MY suggestion would be to lower the trim all the way down, rerun your room correction setup, and than boost the trim all the way back up, this should do more to protect your driver.
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post #4 of 25 Old 01-30-2013, 02:39 PM
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Have you done any reading from this thread? http://www.avsforum.com/t/1387178/archaeas-kansas-city-blind-subwoofer-shootout-2012
There's a pretty good comparison with the Seaton and Cap S1.
I personally would go with the Cap S1 from the research I've done, but I mostly just use my subs for movies no music. If you're looking to use it mostly with music Seaton would probably be your best bet.

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post #5 of 25 Old 01-30-2013, 02:49 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shadyJ View Post

I've never bottomed mine out and I have driven them pretty hard. If it is bottoming out at moderate volume levels (and I didn't even know it could bottom out very audibly as it is a underhung driver design) my guess is Audyssey or whatever room correction EQ you are using has really boosted the deep frequencies hard. MY suggestion would be to lower the trim all the way down, rerun your room correction setup, and than boost the trim all the way back up, this should do more to protect your driver.

Thanks, shady...I'll give this a try.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jbrown15 View Post

Have you done any reading from this thread? http://www.avsforum.com/t/1387178/archaeas-kansas-city-blind-subwoofer-shootout-2012
There's a pretty good comparison with the Seaton and Cap S1.
I personally would go with the Cap S1 from the research I've done, but I mostly just use my subs for movies no music. If you're looking to use it mostly with music Seaton would probably be your best bet.

jb15 - I could've sworn I read this thread but I guess it was another shootout. Thanks, it looks very helpful!
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post #6 of 25 Old 01-31-2013, 07:08 AM
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I have heard a lot of subs, and for me my favorite commercial sub is the Submersive. However, the sound quality and output of the Cap S1 is almost identical - I did guess correctly which sub was the Submersive in the blind GTG, and I did prefer it ever so slightly to the S1 but I'd be happy with either. Recently I heard dual Cap S2's as well, which of course sound the same but have twice the output. IMO the best deal in commercial subs is the S2. You get twice the ouput and VERY similar sound to the Submersive for 500 bucks more! If I were you I would go this route or....

DIY

Recently I had the chance to hear the new Dayton HO 18" driver, 2 of them in a dual opposed box. I had it in my room for a few days and did a lot of comparing to the Submersive. This was the first time that I liked the sound quality of a sub every bit as much as the Submersive and the output was very similar to. I ended up buying 8 18" Stereo Integrity drivers which are reported to have the same sound quality as the Daytons and similar output.

I am keeping 1 Submersive just in case, but I may end up selling it depending on how this turns out.

So, if I were you I would either go with a Cap 2 Sealed (depending on what kind of frequency response you get in your room at your seating position from 1 sub) or DIY. If 3 grand is pushing it too much, then yes I'm sure you would love a Submersive.
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post #7 of 25 Old 01-31-2013, 07:42 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carp View Post

I have heard a lot of subs, and for me my favorite commercial sub is the Submersive. However, the sound quality and output of the Cap S1 is almost identical - I did guess correctly which sub was the Submersive in the blind GTG, and I did prefer it ever so slightly to the S1 but I'd be happy with either. Recently I heard dual Cap S2's as well, which of course sound the same but have twice the output. IMO the best deal in commercial subs is the S2. You get twice the ouput and VERY similar sound to the Submersive for 500 bucks more! If I were you I would go this route or....

DIY

Recently I had the chance to hear the new Dayton HO 18" driver, 2 of them in a dual opposed box. I had it in my room for a few days and did a lot of comparing to the Submersive. This was the first time that I liked the sound quality of a sub every bit as much as the Submersive and the output was very similar to. I ended up buying 8 18" Stereo Integrity drivers which are reported to have the same sound quality as the Daytons and similar output.

I am keeping 1 Submersive just in case, but I may end up selling it depending on how this turns out.

So, if I were you I would either go with a Cap 2 Sealed (depending on what kind of frequency response you get in your room at your seating position from 1 sub) or DIY. If 3 grand is pushing it too much, then yes I'm sure you would love a Submersive.

Thanks so much, carp! I guess I should have clarified that I'm not looking for bone crushing output like you guys and I need to keep the size to an acceptable limit as it's a family room. smile.gif The SubM is pushing my max size and budget so anything beyond that would be a bit too much, both in cost and size. The S2 is too big for the room, and I'd be wasting so much of it's output capability as I don't listen at or near reference levels.

Thanks again for your help!
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post #8 of 25 Old 01-31-2013, 08:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lewdogg View Post

Thanks so much, carp! I guess I should have clarified that I'm not looking for bone crushing output like you guys and I need to keep the size to an acceptable limit as it's a family room. smile.gif The SubM is pushing my max size and budget so anything beyond that would be a bit too much, both in cost and size. The S2 is too big for the room, and I'd be wasting so much of it's output capability as I don't listen at or near reference levels.

Thanks again for your help!

Sure man!

Are you leaning towards just one sub? If that's the case Submersive or Cap sealed 1, I assume the ported Cap would be too big too? The Cap 1 takes up very little space and sounds awesome, that would be a GREAT option too.
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post #9 of 25 Old 01-31-2013, 08:03 AM
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Your DIY option could save you a lot of money though and with duals you could smooth your response.... I'm not much help here... smile.gif I'm probably just repeating all the thoughts you already have. If it were me I'd go DIY but I say that just because that's what I'm getting ready to do.
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post #10 of 25 Old 01-31-2013, 04:38 PM
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I would say DIY. If you can go a little bigger on the box and fit dual 18's, it would be the way to go. It takes 2 15" sealed subs to roughly equal one 18". I say dual 18's in a 4 cu ft box (probably go as low as 3.5'). Throw in a Behringer EP4000 and you are looking at just under $1K for everything. If you plan to keep the other subs you really need some EQ and measurement gear to integrate everything and understand your room.
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post #11 of 25 Old 02-01-2013, 03:23 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ack_bk View Post

I would say DIY. If you can go a little bigger on the box and fit dual 18's, it would be the way to go. It takes 2 15" sealed subs to roughly equal one 18". I say dual 18's in a 4 cu ft box (probably go as low as 3.5'). Throw in a Behringer EP4000 and you are looking at just under $1K for everything. If you plan to keep the other subs you really need some EQ and measurement gear to integrate everything and understand your room.

18s would be great but I can't swing them in the room...enclosures are too large. BTW, here's the measurement from my room with the ULS and MBM...thinking 3 cu. ft. boxes from DIY Group and Dayton 15HOs or SI HT15D4s.

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post #12 of 25 Old 02-02-2013, 08:34 PM
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I'm a big believer in 2 subs to even out room response.
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post #13 of 25 Old 02-03-2013, 07:21 AM
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Originally Posted by shadyJ View Post

my guess is Audyssey or whatever room correction EQ you are using has really boosted the deep frequencies hard. MY suggestion would be to lower the trim all the way down, rerun your room correction setup, and than boost the trim all the way back up, this should do more to protect your driver.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lewdogg View Post

Thanks, shady...I'll give this a try.

Are you using Audyssey? If so, shadyj's suggestion won't work. Audyssey ignores the trim settings that are set before you run it.

Before you even attempt to fix a problem like this, you need to ensure you actually have the problem. The only way to do that is with measurement gear. Do you have any way to measure your response?

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post #14 of 25 Old 02-03-2013, 10:10 AM
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Lol, that's why I told him to bring back up the trim after he ran Audyssey, so Audyssey does not factor it into its EQ levels.
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post #15 of 25 Old 02-03-2013, 11:12 AM
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Lol, that's why I told him to bring back up the trim after he ran Audyssey, so Audyssey does not factor it into its EQ levels.
But then Audyssey won't EQ the sub either. It will detect no sub, set his mains to full range and not set any EQ filters for the subwoofer. There's no benefit to that. You have him chasing a problem you don't even know he has, and you've suggested a fix that will make his system sound worse.

Audyssey only over-boosts the low end if it finds a huge peak in the middle of the subwoofer range and it has to make huge cuts to bring that peak down. It then "normalizes" the volume, (which be lowered overall by the massive cuts), by raising the overall level, which thereby raises the lowest stuff proportionately.

We don't know if he has a massive peak in the middle of the subwoofer range unless we can see some measurements. In lew of that, (PI), we should not be making suggestions to "fix" the problem.

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post #16 of 25 Old 02-03-2013, 11:28 AM
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The ULS-15 has a knob called the ULF Trim which adjusts the low roll-off off from a selectable frequency point, for cases when room gain already gives the low end a boost. I'm telling him to set it to it's lowest before running Audyssey so Audyssey sees more low frequencies with respect to mids and doesn't feel the need to boost it, and then raising that trim after Audyssey is set so it lowers the deep bass output of the sub and lessens the chances of it bottoming out. Measurements are nice, but I am just telling him something he can do to prevent the sub from bottoming out in the meantime.
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post #17 of 25 Old 02-03-2013, 11:33 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks, guys. smile.gif I posted a measurement of the ULS+MBM setup a few posts up...hope that helps. Here's a measurement with just the ULS active after my most recent Audyssey run...I believe it's definitely better than before, but when watching Immortals where there's some intense ULF, the sub still makes some not so favorable noises at moderately high listening levels. There's a few spots in the movie where there's a brief and sudden blast of ULF and the sub makes a rather loud "thwak", which I'm not sure is the amp clipping or the sub bottoming out. I assume it's bottoming but might be a combination of both.

ULS-15 Alone


Here's the measurement of one PSA XS30 on the left side where the ULS sits...the sub sound pretty good itself, but I think the SubM would give me better SQ. Even without a second sub, the response is fairly flat and the dip around 50hz should be relatively easy to EQ, shouldn't it?

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post #18 of 25 Old 02-03-2013, 11:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shadyJ View Post

The ULS-15 has a knob called the ULF Trim which adjusts the low roll-off off from a selectable frequency point, for cases when room gain already gives the low end a boost. I'm telling him to set it to it's lowest before running Audyssey so Audyssey sees more low frequencies with respect to mids and doesn't feel the need to boost it, and then raising that trim after Audyssey is set so it lowers the deep bass output of the sub and lessens the chances of it bottoming out. Measurements are nice, but I am just telling him something he can do to prevent the sub from bottoming out in the meantime.

OK, I thought you meant the trim in the receiver, or the volume control on the sub. I couldn't tell what you were referring to. Perhaps next time you could just say "the ULF trim control on sub" to make it more clear.

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post #19 of 25 Old 02-03-2013, 12:30 PM - Thread Starter
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UPDATE: I'm making a LITTLE progress...I ruled out option 1. Now it's between the SubM, Cap S1, and the DIY build. Most seem to think the DIY is the preferred direction, but I'm not sure the wife is on board (yet). smile.gif
Quote:
1. Add a second ULS-15
My current ULS-15 bottoms out with ULFs at moderate volumes, even with the ULF trim set close to 50hz. My concern is even if I add a second I'll still have the same problem. I would not co-locate, the second ULS would go on the right side of the room. My problem may be related to Audyssey blowing out the ULFs...I may have to rerun to see if it helps at all.

2. Seaton SubM HP
When I placed the XS30 where the ULS was I got a relatively flat response, but just not the overall sound I was looking for, especially at higher volumes. I believe the sound quality and performance of the SubM would give me this.

3. JTR Cap S1
It fits my size requirement and gives me the output. However, I'm not sure how it compares to the SubM in SQ. I believe I read that it's close but I can't find the post.

4. DIY Two 3 cu ft cabinets, each with 15" drivers
Considering the Dayton 15HO or SI HT 15D4. Would need to find an amp, perhaps an EP2500 or SA1000. Cheapest option (if I sell my current equipment) and probably the most fun. smile.gif
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post #20 of 25 Old 02-03-2013, 01:11 PM
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Originally Posted by lewdogg View Post

UPDATE: I'm making a LITTLE progress...I ruled out option 1. Now it's between the SubM, Cap S1, and the DIY build. Most seem to think the DIY is the preferred direction, but I'm not sure the wife is on board (yet). smile.gif

All of these options can be excellent. However, the thing you get with the Seaton SubM HP that you don't get with the other options is the engineering work Mark Seaton has done in the amp. The DSP has a number of features that are valuable:

1. the L/T circuit that flattens the response below driver resonance
2. Prgm1/Prgm2 that extend the response to 19 Hz and 15 Hz respectively
3. the soft clipping circuit
4. driver protection

The other big benefit is the dual opposed design that completely eliminates cabinet resonance. You can certainly duplicate some or all of these with another amp and your own dual opposed design, but Mark has done all the work for you and you can "know" it will work. I know I'm definitely happy with my 3 SubM HP's.

Good luck with whatever you decide.

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post #21 of 25 Old 02-04-2013, 09:12 AM
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Man, I want a Seaton sooooooooo bad. Been trying for over a month to contact Epik for a 2nd Empire. Maybe its time to sell that and run with the big dogs. (although the S1 is a bad ass looking sub)
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post #22 of 25 Old 02-04-2013, 01:26 PM
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Man, I want a Seaton sooooooooo bad. Been trying for over a month to contact Epik for a 2nd Empire. Maybe its time to sell that and run with the big dogs. (although the S1 is a bad ass looking sub)

You should also look into DIY options. For about $1K you can get some really impressive performance with a pair of 18" Dayton HO or SI D2 18" drivers (about $240 apiece). along with a Behringer EP4000 to power them ($275). You can either buy flatpack kits:
http://www.diysoundgroup.com/flat-packs-1/subwoofer-flatpacks-2.html

Or try and build the box yourself. If you are someone who is looking for much more performance vs what you have now for the money it is a good way to go.

Or you can get a Submerssive or Captivator smile.gif
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post #23 of 25 Old 02-04-2013, 07:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ack_bk View Post

You should also look into DIY options. For about $1K you can get some really impressive performance with a pair of 18" Dayton HO or SI D2 18" drivers (about $240 apiece). along with a Behringer EP4000 to power them ($275). You can either buy flatpack kits:
http://www.diysoundgroup.com/flat-packs-1/subwoofer-flatpacks-2.html

Or try and build the box yourself. If you are someone who is looking for much more performance vs what you have now for the money it is a good way to go.

Or you can get a Submerssive or Captivator smile.gif

I've always thought about doing a DIY project. I spent a good portion of the afternoon over at home theater shack reading about the difference DIY builds. Holy crap it can be overwhelming.
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post #24 of 25 Old 02-04-2013, 10:26 PM
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Originally Posted by ratm View Post

I've always thought about doing a DIY project. I spent a good portion of the afternoon over at home theater shack reading about the difference DIY builds. Holy crap it can be overwhelming.

Yes, I totally understand. I just went through that. Here are some things that will help:
How large a box can you build (this will help dictate sealed vs ported and driver size)
What size is your room?
What is your budget?

I would be happy to help you model some subs if you need help with WinisdPro.

But you should be able to get close to the Submersive in terms of performance with DIY for around $1K.
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post #25 of 25 Old 02-05-2013, 04:41 PM
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Quote:
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Yes, I totally understand. I just went through that. Here are some things that will help:
How large a box can you build (this will help dictate sealed vs ported and driver size)
What size is your room?
What is your budget?

I would be happy to help you model some subs if you need help with WinisdPro.

But you should be able to get close to the Submersive in terms of performance with DIY for around $1K.

Thanks! I really appreciate it. If I had my druthers, here is what I would like. Duals (eventually), with the same dimenstions as an Empire. I def plan on buying a flatpack or having a wood working expert take the dimensions and make the box. My room is fairly large at 18X14 with a vaulted ceiling (12 foot) that opens to a kitchen/dining room to the left and a hallway to the right. There is a 3 foot dividing wall that separates the Living room from the dining room. I would say that my budget it 1k, unless I can sell the Empire, in which case it would be 1500 or so.

I really dont need single digit extension, as I rarely, if ever listen to anything much louder than -10 on my AVR. For Example, I just listened to TDK rises and at -10, the Empire was shaking the whole house. Thats what I want, only more smile.gif
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