Definitive Technology Prosub 800 vs Outlaw M8 (WIP) - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 03-08-2013, 10:22 PM - Thread Starter
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To start with, I am no audiophile…yet. These tests are done by ear with nothing other than a frequency-generator program to confirm perceived frequency response. I have heard very little material played on high-end equipment. My dad has an old M&K 5.1 set (~$3000) in our living room, so I am using that as a high reference, along with my recently replaced Klipsch Promedia 2.1s ($150) as a low reference.


{Test Setup}



[Satellites]
(Name) Onkyo D-N3XA Bookshelf Speakers
(Type) Bass Reflex
(Frequency response) 60hz-35kHz
(Woofer) 4.7" polymer composite woofer
(Tweeter) 1" soft-dome tweeter
(Impedance) 5 ohms
(Sensitivity) 84 dB
(Power handling) 70 watts MAX

[Amplifier]
(Name) Audiosource Amp-100
(WPC) 50 @ 8ohms, 61 @ 4 ohms
(Frequency Response) (20hz-20khz, +1db/-.5db), (10hz-25khz, +/- 3db)
(THD+N) < 1% THD+N

[Sound Card]
Realtek….I KNOW, I KNOW…at least it has a built-in EQ and a Toslink output.

[Isolation Pads]
6”x9”x3” Yoga blocks. HEY, THEY WORK!


{Testing Material}

[Music]
(Dubstep)
Many tracks from artists/bands such as, but not limited to: Daft Punk, cheshyre, Dj-Nate, xKore, Skrillex, and TheBiocide.
Example tracks:
“Adagio For Tron” by Daft Punk
“Madness 4” by cheshyre
“Regret” by Dj-Nate
“Last Words” by xKore
“Make It Burn Dem” by Skrillex and Damian Marley
“Core Concept” by TheBiocide
(Classical / Orchestral / Trailer)
Many tracks from artists/bands such as, but not limited to: Two Steps From Hell, Audio Machine, Woodkid, Dan Johansen, Halcyonic Falcon X, and PeterSatera.
Example tracks/albums:
Album - “Invincible” by Two Steps From Hell
Album - “Chronicles” by Audio Machine
“Iron” by Woodkid
“Floating Island Githrau” by Dan Johansen
“Morrowind” by Halcyonic Falcon X
“With Heart and Shield” by PeterSatera
(Metal / Rock / Other)
Many tracks from artists/bands such as, but not limited to: Martin O’Donnell, Incubus, Hoobstank, Xenogenocide, Green Day, and Rise Against.
Example tracks/albums:
Album - “Halo 2 OST” by Martin O’Donnell, Incubus, and Hoobstank
Album – “Beyond the Dimensions” by Xenogenocide
“Boulevard of Broken Dreams” by Green Day
“Savior” by Rise Against

[Movies]
The Lord of the Rings Trilogy (isn’t that all you really need?)
The Book of Eli
Iron Man

[Games]
Battlefield Bad Company 2 (I hate BF3…)
Skyrim


{Definitive Technology Prosub 800 Results}

[Comments]
The Definitive Technology Prosub 800 is cable of producing powerful bass down to approximately 35hz. However, it will not get anywhere near the advertised 20hz. One huge thing I noticed is how much the Prosub shakes the room… in fact, I could almost feel my room shake more than I could hear the sub. This was a pleasing experience during movies, but feeling a room-shaking thud with every stroke of the passive radiator while listening to music seemed...off. Not only this, but the sub’s cabinet tended to resonate, making normally non-directional appear to be VERY directional. Do note that I am using it in near-filed, approximately 18” to 30” away from my head; my volume requirements are FAR less than that of a home theater, and I have not experienced the sub bottoming out.

This sub seems to be a good fit for any music that can have a beat to it: rock, metal, trance, drum and bass, and classical sounded excellent. However, any kind of music that required the sub to maintain a deep tone (dubstep, trailer, orchestral) just didn’t sound right, due to the shaking / resonance described above. Movies on the other hand, were an awesome experience, ALMOST across the board.

In scenes like the cave troll battle and the mines of Moria (at the bridge of Khazad Dum) in LOTR the Fellowship of the Ring, the rumble was deep and strong. I could feel the troll’s footsteps / hammer blows, and the crumbling of the walkways beneath the adventurers’ feet. However, I could not feel the bass in my chest, but only through my desk and floor. I also tested the sub in the Book of Eli. There isn’t that much bass in this film, but what of it there was sounded good on the Prosub, save for one aspect. The movie has a dark and deep ambiance of bass (in the 25 to 40hz range), accompanying the emotionally bleak treble used in many instances. The Prosub didn’t do so well at reproducing this bass.

The only game I really tested on the Prosub 800 is Battlefield Bad Company 2. The thunderous cry of the force-amplifier-thingy during Zero Dark Thirty (it is pretty much deepest bass you will ever hear/feel in a video game) was soul-shaking; deep, powerful, and impactful at the same time. However, while playing multiplayer I noticed that explosion and impacts WERE NOT IMPACTS, but instead a series of smaller thumps, as the passive radiator tried to reproduce the frequency. I played a bit of Skyrim as well, but the game itself has relatively little deep bass, save for a dragon landing in front of you or getting launched into orbit by a giant’s club.

[Pros and Cons]
(Pros)
Well defined (clear / tight) tonal reproduction in the 60hz+ range

(Cons)
Sub is very directional in near field…the sub’s box seems to resonate
Sub has very little response below 35hz, and virtually none under 30hz.
Impacts are reproduced as low-frequency vibrations; the sub doesn't kick
Sub’s room-shaking isn’t favorable for music with deep, bassy tones; tonal reproduction falls off at lower frequencies, replaced by rumble

[Scores]
(Music) Overall 8.0
Dubstep 7.5
Orchestral / Trailer 8.0
Classical / Metal / Rock / Other 9.5
(Movies) Overall 9.0
LOTR Trilogy 9.0
Book of Eli 8.5
Iron Man 9.0
(Games) Overall 8.5
Bad Company 2 8.0
Skyrim 8.5


{Outlaw M8 Results}

[Comments]
Will add at a later date...life has been busy for me.

[Pros and Cons]
(Pros)
Lower -3db limit of 29hz (you can FEEL it)
It hits HARD
Blends with satellites incredibly well due to down-firing driver (seriously, I can’t tell that it is there)
I didn’t notice any port noise
Deep, rich tonal reproduction

(Cons)
Being a ported sub, it sacrifices some tightness for depth
Can be a bit boomy on the occasion

[Scores]
(Music) Overall 9.0
Dubstep 9.0
Orchestral / Trailer 8.5
Classical / Metal / Rock / Other 9.0

(Movies) Overall 9.0
LOTR Trilogy 8.5
Book of Eli 10
Iron Man 8.5

(Games) Overall 9.5
Bad Company 2 9.5
Skyrim 9.5


{Comparison}

[Media Performance]
(Music)
Prosub for traditional, Outlaw for new age
(Movies)
Prosub 800 > Outlaw M8, but depends greatly on movie genre and personal preference.
(Video Games)
Outlaw M8 = Prosub 800, but depends greatly on personal preference.

[Sound]
(Authority)
Prosub 800 > Outlaw M8
(Depth)
Outlaw M8 > Prosub 800
(Impact)
Outlaw M8 > Prosub 800
(Tightness / Clarity)
Outlaw M8 > Prosub 800
(Volume without distortion)
Prosub 800 => Outlaw M8


{Conclusion}
The Prosub got returned. It was the very first passive radiator sub that I have ever heard, and it may be the last. Although it shook my house during movies, it simply sounded terrible with bass – toned music, of which I am very fond. This literally seemed to be a comparison between rumble and depth/clarity, and I chose depth/clarity; I found the outlaw to have a much fuller and truer tone.

I have also noticed that the M8 blends MUCH better with my satellites than the Prosub, probably due to down-firing driver, and the lack of a high pass crossover; allowing my bookshelf speakers to operate how they were designed to. During movies and games, the Outlaw doesn’t shake the room with as much intent as the Prosub, but instead reproduces a bit of the bass which you feel the bass in your chest. The Prosub does not reproduce these frequencies, and it doesn’t kick either; its passive radiator seemed to try to interpret thumps and thuds as a frequency, thus muffling the impact, and drawing it out into a tone.

For my application as a near-field music / gaming sub, the Outlaw was superior to the Prosub in virtually every way. If you are looking to buy a musical, yet impactful sub for your desk, I advise considering Outlaw's M8 b-stock. On the other hand, if you are looking for a small HT subwoofer to shake your room, the Prosub 800 is for you.
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post #2 of 7 Old 03-09-2013, 10:18 AM
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I wonder, what it sounds like if we replace the woofer to more quality woofer, same size, but capable to hit lower freq (based on spec). Example ::
http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?partnumber=264-1138

Will it sound best or worst?
Cause I have prosub 600, and thinking to replace the woofer

Bedroom theater
Dynaudio DM 2/6 - Dynaudio DM Center - Def tech pro monitor 600 - Def Tech Prosub 600 - Marantz NR1402 - Bantam Gold Power Amp - Clark Synthesis tst 239 - Dune H1 - PS3
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post #3 of 7 Old 03-09-2013, 02:10 PM - Thread Starter
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You would have to somehow re-tune the radiator to meld with the frequency response of the new driver. It may be as simple as adjusting the mass of the radiator, but I really don't know.
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post #4 of 7 Old 03-09-2013, 04:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darknecron View Post

You would have to somehow re-tune the radiator to meld with the frequency response of the new driver. It may be as simple as adjusting the mass of the radiator, but I really don't know.

Ahh, I forgot about the radiator, but I just rad this article
http://www.centerpointaudio.com/PassiveRadiators.aspx

based on that article, just replace the radiator with same woofer and remove the magnet,
well, it will cost $360:D

Bedroom theater
Dynaudio DM 2/6 - Dynaudio DM Center - Def tech pro monitor 600 - Def Tech Prosub 600 - Marantz NR1402 - Bantam Gold Power Amp - Clark Synthesis tst 239 - Dune H1 - PS3
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post #5 of 7 Old 03-09-2013, 05:17 PM - Thread Starter
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You could almost get 2x BIC F12s for that. O_o
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post #6 of 7 Old 03-13-2013, 07:16 PM - Thread Starter
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My attempt of a 2-way shootout / comparative review is essentially finished. I am very content with my ending comparison of the two subwoofers.

Tell me how badly I did!
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post #7 of 7 Old 03-27-2013, 08:41 AM
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Thanks for the comparison. I just got an Outlaw M8. Waiting for voltage converter for the Yamaha receiver as it is a US model and I live in India. I'll add my thoughts after everything is done.
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