Originally Posted by Brian323
Well, I honestly had no idea what to look for when I first purchased a sub woofer. I understand what bass is, but didn't really put much thought into it purchasing until I read almost everyone recommending a sub woofer a must have for a home theatre.
After I got it, I played with the crossovers somewhat, and from what I can tell, subwoofers is really about ADDING to the sound. The very loud HUM that gets you envoloped. I think for the most part, sub woofers are only needed for envoloping the audience to the source and to make the soundstage fuller/bigger/wider. If this is the case and I am correct, I do not understand why people turn up their subwoofer LOUD in movies. The sub isnt supposed to stick out since then it takes away from its pripary goal, which is of envoloping the audience with neurtral response. It's not suppose to thump from the speakers (stand out) at all.
In other words, all subwoofers should only be heard at subtle levels. Primary goal being able to blend. Blending should be the most important goal for any subwoofer.
With music as well. If you are going for hip hop, then yeah its understood that a subwoofer CAN be turned up, since the priomary source of hip hop relies on REPEATED rythmic sounds, and the the very rythmnic sounds is emphasized with thumps (subwoofer) to begin with. So its understandable.
But with any other types of music, like I mentioned previously, subwoofer should only be played at subtle levels.
If the cost of the Rythmics and Outlaws and the high end subwoofers cost 3 x as much as a normal subwoofer (like a BIC or any other sort in $250 price point) then I seriously think its a waste of money wasting buying ANY subwoofer that is above $300 price point.
That is ofcourse unless you have a personal commercial theatre and plan to turn your whole home into one single theatre with nothing but movie seats and a screen.
For an avergage shopper, it is unneccesary and I'd personally spend the money on the front three speakers than waste money on a rythmics or hsu, or outlaw subs since im gussing the maximum living room for an avergage home owners's size is about 30 x 30 etc...
The whole point of subwoofer is to blend and fill in the HOLLOWNESS that the front three and sorrounds cannot fill in your living room. In turn, making your home theatre never to have a "disconnection" in audio source when viewing a particular source. The fouindation of any movie viewing experience is to make you feel like "you are there" with the movies and this is the ultimate goal I think. And if have a hollowness in sound when viewing a souce, it puts you right back in the real world and that you are only listiing to audio.
For an average listener, it is said that we cannot hear a difference under the 25hz frequency, If this is the case, there are ALOT of subwoofers that cost 3 times as less than the outlaws,hsus, and such.
Really, I see no point in getting any subwoofer that cost above $250.00 price point if you are in a living room. For a personal home theatre, I think about $400.00 should be the maximum a person should spend on a sub.
Even with these low-mid priced subwoofers, I highly doubt you will turn it up even 1/3 of the way. Walls shaking and windows rattling is only the shallow aspects of showing off a woofer. It has NOTHING to do with what subwoofer should be used for and its primary goal, which is to blend smeainglessly with all your other speakers and importantly, never to stick out. If walls shake and windows rattle, its going against the very goal of home theatre, which is to listen comfortabley in a seamless audio sound watching a particular source. (movie or whatnot).
If things rattle around you and feel the subwoofer, it aleardy defeats the purpose since you have just focused on a particular sound,(subwoofer) and breaks the rythem of 5.1 or 7.1 sound.
My advice to all average Joe home theatre shoppers is to never spend more than $250.00 on a sub.
A "hum" of any kind is bad. Subwoofers add bass, not hum. You have a ground loop problem somewhere.
People (who know what they're doing) don't "turn up their subwoofers loud." As you say, they should blend; no one speaker (sub, surround or otherwise) should call attention to itself in a properly designed system.
There are many people (especially here) who have, indeed, set up part of their home as a theatre "with nothing but movie seats and a screen." I, unfortunately, cannot be one of those people, but I'm very happy with my system as it is. You can be, too; indeed, perhaps you already are.
More expensive subwoofers are able to play deeper and louder. If you have a small room and don't need to rattle the fillings in your teeth, you may be perfectly happy with the sub you have (or the Klipsch RW-12d, which is one of the subs I have). If you have a large room and want to crank it up, you need a more powerful subwoofer (or two, or three!).
You don't hear much below 25Hz, you FEEL it. Do you know the feeling you get when a big truck goes past your house? You don't need to look to see the big truck. A good subwoofer reproduces that "feeling," not just the sound. And you can't get that feeling for $250. Which is why I just ordered Buttkickers, but that's another story.
Most of the time, references here to "walls shaking" is accepted hyperbole. You're being too literal. That said, there are many here with systems that can, indeed, shake walls, but, like having a car that CAN go 90 miles per hour, that doesn't mean that you USUALLY go 90 miles per hour.
Average Joe may be perfectly happy with a $250 sub. Indeed, there are at least two threads here that deal specifically with subwoofers in that price range. The Klipsch was available for a time for $280, which was considered a fantastic bargain. I love mine. There are cars that are capable of hitting 200 MPH. I don't need (or, frankly, want) one of them, either.
There is nothing wrong with being happy with the system you have. Indeed, some of us never know when (or how!) to stop (see the threads about digging DOWN through the basement floor to make room for two rows of seats, see the threads about building a separate room to generate <5 Hz, see the threads.... You get the idea.).
Enjoy what you have.