SVS PB-12 NSD or HSU VTF-3 MK4 or HSU VTF-15H - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 40 Old 09-02-2013, 12:33 PM - Thread Starter
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Need recommendations please!

Room size: L shaped. Home theater setup on short side of L. Size of shorter side of "L" = 16X15X10 = 2400 cu ft. The longer part of "L" consists of kitchen and formal dining area which are huge with vaulted ceiling.

Therefore, main listening area even though only 2400 cu ft, the overall area is quite large. I don't know how it pans out on what is my room size smile.gif.

Here are my choices:

These two are within my budget:

1. SVS PB- 12NSD for $729 shipped

2. HSU VTF3 - MK4 for $800 shipped

I can maybe stretch it to get a 3. HSU VTF 15H for $1043 shipped but only if I really should! That's between 200-300 more than models listed above!

I do 50:50 music:HT. Newly upgraded system - RF7 Pair, RC7, RS52 Pair. Sold both the Klipsch RW12Ds during the upgrade and want to get a better sub, just one(for now). IF you were me, what would you get? How does 2 compares with 1 and is 3 really worth the extra $ in my setup?

Thanks in advance!
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post #2 of 40 Old 09-02-2013, 01:55 PM
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Might want to add the PSA XS-15 for $799 shipped to your list as well.

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post #3 of 40 Old 09-02-2013, 02:01 PM
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My fav from those would be the VTF3. It will dig deeper and have more output than the PB12, although it won't have quite as much output as the VTF15h. The VTF15h would be killer though. Would it be worth the upgrade, well that depends on how loud you like to listen to stuff. You might also give this kit a gander, if you can do a bit of DIY, that looks to be a great value for under $1k shipped.
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post #4 of 40 Old 09-02-2013, 02:03 PM
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The VTF-15 will dig deeper with more impact than the others and you have RF-7 which are already dynamic and can reach high levels besides you can never buy to much sub you can turn it down but you can't extract more out of a smaller sub.
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post #5 of 40 Old 09-02-2013, 02:12 PM
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Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show) wink.gif

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post #6 of 40 Old 09-02-2013, 02:16 PM
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You bring up a good point Steve, Hsu and SVS do not have to resort to deception to sell their products.
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post #7 of 40 Old 09-02-2013, 02:23 PM - Thread Starter
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Looks like a few things are going beyond my grasp in the chart. Thanks for this but before I can really appreciate it, what rows should I be looking at?
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post #8 of 40 Old 09-02-2013, 02:33 PM
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I can't agree with that chart on in room extension if the supplied CD that comes with the VTF-15H plays the 16Hz organ note without breaking a sweat.
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post #9 of 40 Old 09-02-2013, 02:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oztech View Post

I can't agree with that chart on in room extension if the supplied CD that comes with the VTF-15H plays the 16Hz organ note without breaking a sweat.

Ultra low in the tests are 20-31hz if I’m not mistaken and low is 40-63hz. Time will tell how the VTF does at 16hz as apposed to the XV per Josh?

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post #10 of 40 Old 09-02-2013, 03:18 PM - Thread Starter
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A question in the same note, how's the Klipsch RSW15 as compared to the listed?
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post #11 of 40 Old 09-02-2013, 03:20 PM
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Originally Posted by steve nn View Post

Ultra low in the tests are 20-31hz if I’m not mistaken and low is 40-63hz. Time will tell how the VTF does at 16hz as apposed to the XV per Josh?


The chart referenced takes the 15h data from the audioholics review. They only provided the output data for the 15h in max output mode where the response begins to rolloff at 30hz.

http://www.audioholics.com/subwoofer-reviews/vtf-15h/vtf-15h-measurements

By 16hz its down 20dB. In max extension mode the extension will be lower, but you will also lose system efficiency (this is non debatable). So take about 1.4 to 1.8dB off the cea burst numbers if set to max extension. I would have rather used max extension data because that would have given similar extension to the XV15. But audioholics didn't publish any cea burst data on this mode. So I just had to go with what was available. (which actually makes the 15h look better in terms of output).

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post #12 of 40 Old 09-02-2013, 03:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ajayendra View Post

A question in the same note, how's the Klipsch RSW15 as compared to the listed?

good question

its rated 121db 1/8 space 1m @ 30hz...that would be 103db 2m open ground @ 30hz.
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post #13 of 40 Old 09-02-2013, 03:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ajayendra View Post

A question in the same note, how's the Klipsch RSW15 as compared to the listed?

I have one of these but never measured it using the new CEA 2010 method that I can remember. I know it has a lot of output >35hz, rolls off pretty quick under that. I think this was Deon's last creation before leaving Klipsch so it figures it was one of their best woofs to date..smile.gif

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post #14 of 40 Old 09-02-2013, 03:26 PM
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Originally Posted by basshead81 View Post

I would guess not even in the same league.

No, the rsw15 was really a power house. You could tell they put some last minute limiters on Deon's design (FR issues <40hz or so) but it really kicked >35hz..smile.gif

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post #15 of 40 Old 09-02-2013, 03:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Vodhanel View Post

No, the rsw15 was really a power house. You could tell they put some last minute limiters on Deon's design (FR issues <40hz or so) but it really kicked >35hz..smile.gif

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yea i edited my post after I realized it was the rsw15 not sw115. smile.gif
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post #16 of 40 Old 09-02-2013, 03:47 PM
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yea i edited my post after I realized it was the rsw15 not sw115. smile.gif


blast from the past....(click on first link)

http://www.hometheaterforum.com/topic/137903-updated-nousaine-subwoofer-data-list/

rsw15 = monster in output >45hz or so but FR wasn't so good.

If I ever have time ( HAH!) I'll drag mine out for our next round of cea 2010 party time.

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post #17 of 40 Old 09-02-2013, 04:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Vodhanel View Post

The chart referenced takes the 15h data from the audioholics review. They only provided the output data for the 15h in max output mode where the response begins to rolloff at 30hz.

http://www.audioholics.com/subwoofer-reviews/vtf-15h/vtf-15h-measurements

By 16hz its down 20dB. In max extension mode the extension will be lower, but you will also lose system efficiency (this is non debatable). So take about 1.4 to 1.8dB off the cea burst numbers if set to max extension. I would have rather used max extension data because that would have given similar extension to the XV15. But audioholics didn't publish any cea burst data on this mode. So I just had to go with what was available. (which actually makes the 15h look better in terms of output).

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Very informative Tom, thanks for stepping in. Your answer answers a question I have had also and the next answer to the next most likely question to be brought up. smile.gif
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post #18 of 40 Old 09-02-2013, 04:49 PM
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In the $700-$800 range, you can't go wrong with the PSA XV15, HSU VTF-3, or SVS PB12-NSD. Another option is the PC12-NSD which is on sale for $699 shipped.
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post #19 of 40 Old 09-03-2013, 05:55 AM
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To echo what ShadyJ said, how loud do you listen?

I've had both the SVS-pc12 (should be very similar to the pb12) and hsu-vtf 15h, and really couldn't discern a differrence between the two. The caveat being, I only listen at moderate levels. The only reason I got rid of the pc12 was the wife tired of the form factor. The only reason I "splurged" for the vtf-15h, was that a local AVS member was selling his at a great deal.

good luck!

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post #20 of 40 Old 09-03-2013, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by rnatalli View Post

In the $700-$800 range, you can't go wrong with the PSA XV15, HSU VTF-3, or SVS PB12-NSD. Another option is the PC12-NSD which is on sale for $699 shipped.

Agreed! All these choices are great options.
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post #21 of 40 Old 09-03-2013, 09:02 AM
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Originally Posted by madhuski View Post

To echo what ShadyJ said, how loud do you listen?

I've had both the SVS-pc12 (should be very similar to the pb12) and hsu-vtf 15h, and really couldn't discern a differrence between the two. The caveat being, I only listen at moderate levels. The only reason I got rid of the pc12 was the wife tired of the form factor. The only reason I "splurged" for the vtf-15h, was that a local AVS member was selling his at a great deal.

good luck!

Madhuski makes a great point. Max output is only relevant if you hit the limits on the sub with the lower output. It doesn't really matter that a Ferrari hits 210 mph while a lesser car hits only 170, if you never drive above 100 mph anyway.

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post #22 of 40 Old 09-03-2013, 09:37 AM
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Originally Posted by NewHTbuyer View Post

Madhuski makes a great point. Max output is only relevant if you hit the limits on the sub with the lower output. It doesn't really matter that a Ferrari hits 210 mph while a lesser car hits only 170, if you never drive above 100 mph anyway.

I think max output is very relevant. With movies, you're very likely to be close to the sub's limits even at MV levels like -20dB on scenes with loud sub-20hz content. Reference volume for the LFE channel is 115dB peaks (and that's without considering bass redirection from other channels), which means that, if you're listening at a "moderate" -20dB, the PC12-NSD will be close to its limits if the source content calls for a very loud 16hz note. None of the subs being discussed are capable of reference levels at 16hz, so every dB of headroom matters.

Furthermore, a sub that has a higher max output will play cleaner with less distortion at a given volume than an otherwise identical sub with lower output at the same volume, because the latter is closer to its limits. Personally, I'd feel safer driving 100mph in a car designed to do 210 than one that can "only" do 170.
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post #23 of 40 Old 09-03-2013, 09:45 AM
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Originally Posted by tenderchkn View Post

I think max output is very relevant. With movies, you're very likely to be close to the sub's limits even at MV levels like -20dB on scenes with loud sub-20hz content. Reference volume for the LFE channel is 115dB peaks (and that's without considering bass redirection from other channels), which means that, if you're listening at a "moderate" -20dB, the PC12-NSD will be close to its limits if the source content calls for a very loud 16hz note. None of the subs being discussed are capable of reference levels at 16hz, so every dB of headroom matters.

Furthermore, a sub that has a higher max output will play cleaner with less distortion at a given volume than an otherwise identical sub with lower output at the same volume, because the latter is closer to its limits. Personally, I'd feel safer driving 100mph in a car designed to do 210 than one that can "only" do 170.

+1 Ninja poster says it again smile.gif Now instead of talking about subs, I'm going to go out and build one. wink.gif

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post #24 of 40 Old 09-03-2013, 10:26 AM
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I am always happy to learn more and amend my posts if i got something wrong.

So you are saying that if a bass heavy scene calls for a 16 Hz note at 115 dB, and you are listening at -20 on your volume knob, then your sub should play that note at 95 dB? So in that case the PB12, which could only hit 93 dB per Ricci's numbers would fall short while the XV15 can hit 98 dB?

I can follow that.

But, the distortion on the XV at 98 dB was 35%. The PB12 at 93 dB was only 14%. And at 20 Hz they had almost identical output but the XV distortion was much higher than the PB12, so maybe you can clarify that last part of your post about a sub that can play louder will do so with less distortion.

Thanks.

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post #25 of 40 Old 09-03-2013, 10:28 AM
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Originally Posted by tenderchkn View Post

Furthermore, a sub that has a higher max output will play cleaner with less distortion at a given volume than an otherwise identical sub with lower output at the same volume, because the latter is closer to its limits. Personally, I'd feel safer driving 100mph in a car designed to do 210 than one that can "only" do 170.

What complicates this is some subs may have more headroom, but they also have a lot more distortion as you approach their limits. To stretch your car analogy further, the car that can drive 210 might have poor handling, but the car that can only do 170 never loses your control. It reminds me of that Top Gear episode where they pit a Corvette ZR1 against an Audi R8.
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post #26 of 40 Old 09-03-2013, 10:44 AM
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Something neat I learned on here is that when we are talking about distortion in the bottom octaves, room gain is going to be boosting the fundamental frequency more than the harmonics. In room distortion measurements will be much lower than outdoor ground plane.

This can work both ways though in some situations. Say you have to pull down a 30 hz peak by 15 dB to get a flat response. Your second order harmonic distortion of 15 hz will still see that room mode and will be boosted by 15 dB. Its hard to beat the frequency response smoothing and headroom gains of multiple subs. smile.gif
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post #27 of 40 Old 09-03-2013, 11:35 AM
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But, the distortion on the XV at 98 dB was 35%. The PB12 at 93 dB was only 14%. And at 20 Hz they had almost identical output but the XV distortion was much higher than the PB12, so maybe you can clarify that last part of your post about a sub that can play louder will do so with less distortion..

The PB12-NSD shows very low distortion numbers at max output because it has a very aggressive limiter that kicks as right before THD spikes. If you look two columns over on Ricci's chart, you'll see that with no THD limits, it does 94.6dB at 16hz with 41.6% THD. That's a 3x increase in THD with only a 1.3dB increase in volume. Nearly all subwoofers will have their THD measurements spike at max volume at the lowest octaves. There's no measurement for the THD of the XV15 at 16hz at 93.3dB. The only indirect comparison is from the THD sweep charts on data-bass, which suggests that the PB12-NSD is cleaner than the XV15. Whether or not this matters in practice is debatable, because the whole point of CEA-2010 is to figure out at what point distortion levels become significant. As long as a measurement passes CEA-2010, it is deemed to sound "clean".

This is pure speculation, but I would venture a guess that it is not possible to tell the difference between the PB12-NSD and the XV15 if they are both level matched and played at the PB12's max volume. The difference is that you can turn the XV15 up a few more dB before it gives out, while the PB12 will hit its limiter.

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What complicates this is some subs may have more headroom, but they also have a lot more distortion as you approach their limits. To stretch your car analogy further, the car that can drive 210 might have poor handling, but the car that can only do 170 never loses your control. It reminds me of that Top Gear episode where they pit a Corvette ZR1 against an Audi R8.

Agreed. This was NewHTBuyer's analogy by the way, and I was just responding to it. With different subs, there are too many variables at play for a general statement to hold true.
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post #28 of 40 Old 09-03-2013, 12:01 PM
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I am always happy to learn more and amend my posts if i got something wrong.

So you are saying that if a bass heavy scene calls for a 16 Hz note at 115 dB, and you are listening at -20 on your volume knob, then your sub should play that note at 95 dB? So in that case the PB12, which could only hit 93 dB per Ricci's numbers would fall short while the XV15 can hit 98 dB?

I can follow that.

But, the distortion on the XV at 98 dB was 35%. The PB12 at 93 dB was only 14%. And at 20 Hz they had almost identical output but the XV distortion was much higher than the PB12, so maybe you can clarify that last part of your post about a sub that can play louder will do so with less distortion.

Thanks.
the pb12 jumps over 45% thd at 94db, hince why it has the agressive limiter. If I was you I would ignore shady and follow luke kamps advice. the xv15 hits 94db in room @ 12.5hz with only 18% thd. the pb12 will not get there with its 4th order hpf. max burst thd numbers are not the end all to deciding on a subwoofer. One needs to know how to comprehend all the data and apply it correctly. What Shady does is take a measurement and extort it hoping a novice member will listen to his reckless advice.
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post #29 of 40 Old 09-03-2013, 01:59 PM
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Well they are both great subwoofers and my comment on distortion applies to all subwoofers. But it should be taken into account as the subs limiters should be designed for typical in home use with broadband material. If limited outdoors on burst signals, then there is some left on the table once put in a room watching a flick.

Why not order both and compare yourself for a couple weeks and return one. Worst case is return shipping if you sent back the psa. Zero (svs free return shipping) to ~$150 may be worth it to know you got the one that YOU like the best. A couple dB here or there is overblown around here and would be pretty much inaudible.

I just don't much get into "this is the one to rule them all" debates anymore. I have kind of tired of the you can get a, b, or c, but you would be an idiot to not get c...

By getting an id sub discussed and praised on the forums you have already spanked comparable store bought. The svs uses a nice woofer and both would satisfy most.

http://seriousaudioblog.blogspot.com/2012/05/hall-of-fame-svs-sb12-nsd-and-pb12-nsd.html

I dont fully agree with the author about auditioning in home. You do get to compare looks, set them both up yourself (get measurement gear for best results), and learn how to judge objective results better through experience.

It may be you like the bass, heck maybe try both together, send them both back and order a couple big boys! Wouldn't be the first time that has happened on avs.biggrin.gif
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post #30 of 40 Old 09-03-2013, 03:27 PM
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Quote:
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What complicates this is some subs may have more headroom, but they also have a lot more distortion as you approach their limits. To stretch your car analogy further, the car that can drive 210 might have poor handling, but the car that can only do 170 never loses your control. It reminds me of that Top Gear episode where they pit a Corvette ZR1 against an Audi R8.


This is an incorrect analogy.

1)The CEA-2010 measurement protocol for subwoofers was established based on *extensive* research into the audibility of harmonic distortion versus frequency. It doesn't seem like you can understand what this means based on your posts so I'll summarize it for you----as long as the subwoofer output passes the CEA-2010 distortion limiting protocol the harmonic distortion will not be an audible factor in normal room environments.

2)In your car analogy your replaced the CEA-2010 protocol for "handling". So the correct usage of this would be...

the car that can drive 210 might have *xyz* handling, but the car that can only do 170 has slightly better handling based on measurements only. However, in decades of research, the measured differences in "handling" can not be identified or perceived by humans.

If the difference in handling cannot be perceived by humans based on decades of peer reviewed research(and all else being equal) why wouldn't I want the vehicle offering more performance?

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