Looking for recommendations on a new sub - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 37 Old 11-08-2013, 01:48 PM - Thread Starter
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Hey everyone!

I'm coming into the market for a new sub, and it has been a long time coming. Last year I started my equipment renewal by purchasing a Denon AVR-2312ci and really love it, but it shows how much my sub sucks. I have tuned my current sub to sound better, but I'm still not 100% pleased and the sub is aged. The main speakers that I have are also aged, but they do produce a decent sound and will get upgraded eventually. These speakers are the JBL NS24 Northridge series... I can get exact model #'s off of all 5 speakers later. My current sub? It's a JBL PB10, which was nice for its time and what I could afford when I was 16, but it's time to move on.

I've been contemplating the SVS PB12-NSD or the HSU VTF-3 MK4, so my budget is somewhere in that $700 zone. I'm not tied to these, but these are two that I came up with when digging around. If whatever I buy is a smidge more, that shouldn't hurt anything, but I absolutely cannot stretch it to a grand. I am right around 75% movies/TV and 25% music. I love the big punch from a nice sub, which is why I want something more powerful.

My room size? Well, that’s going to change in the next year or so, but currently my room size is is somewhere around 28x18 with a 12 foot long stub wall that views into my kitchen area…. So not exactly 100% ideal, but it’s my main room for now. The flooring is a granite tile and I do have a basement beneath. I do plan on building theatre space in my basement next year, so that changes my flooring to concrete and 60% of my walls will be solid concrete, with the other 40% being insulated 2x4 walls (the ceiling will also be insulated for sound reasons). I’m going to guess this room will be 26x16x8, though I haven’t fully measured the space that I want to utilize.

One of my friends let me borrow his Paradigm UltraCube10, and this thing is damn nice, but it’s definitely out of my budget. I don’t need a compact sub, either.

I have so much to learn and relearn about audio since it has been years since I read into it a bunch. What would you guys recommend would be ideal for my situation, or have I nailed it on the head?

Thanks in advance for your input!!

-Brian
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post #2 of 37 Old 11-08-2013, 02:45 PM
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You have a big space to fill and pressurize in order to get solid bass. Your basement will also be a good size, so right off the bat I would suggest getting something and plan on getting a 2nd one of as soon as you can afford it. Two subs are usually much better than one when it comes to smoothing out the bass in the room, especially in a large space.

 

SVS and HSU are great to deal with. I just went through the same process of buying a new sub and emailed with different ID companies and found them to be great. I ended up going with PSA. I almost bought the SVS PB12-NSD but in the end decided to go with the PSA XV15 because it seemed to be a bit more powerful and since I knew I would have to wait to get a second sub I decided to go with the 15 inch 500 watt sub over the 12 inch 400 watt sub. I figured for $30 more I would take the bigger sub. But I'm quit sure I would have liked the PB12-NSD just fine. Having said that, I am in awe of my new XV15. It's incredible (IMO).

 

My room is a basement like what you plan on moving into, it's a little smaller than what you have now but it's almost exactly the size of what you think your basement will end up being. Based on the size of your current room I would suggest the PSA XV15, at $800 shipped its a lot of sub at a great price. Especially since you will have to wait to add a second sub since you can't go over a 1K. Like I said, I'm in the same boat, I just got my new sub but can't buy the second one until I save a little. Tom At PSA said that if you order a second sub within six months they will give you the same discount that you would have had if you purchased them at the same time.

 

Another good sub to look at is the sub from Outlaw Audio. 

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post #3 of 37 Old 11-09-2013, 03:59 AM
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If you can only get one sub in this price range, the PSA XV15 is your best bet IMO. If you can up your budget a hair, dual SVS PB-1000s for $949 shipped would do well in that space.
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post #4 of 37 Old 11-09-2013, 04:48 AM
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I would go for the VTF3 in this price range, for the best balance in output, extension, and sound quality, ie all around performance. The thing is, after shipping it is a $800 sub. If you want something nearly as good but closer to $700, wait until black friday and check out the Outlaw Audio LFM-1 EX page. In the past they have put that sub on sale for $600 shipped, which makes it an incredible bargain when you factor in its performance.
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post #5 of 37 Old 11-09-2013, 05:22 AM
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Nothing will beat the PSA XV-15 in this price range.

Another option is the used market. I got dual eD a2-300's for $500 shipped. I'm about to buy a third for $225 shipped, that's only $725 total for three very good midrange subs. No single $700 sub could match three of these.

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post #6 of 37 Old 11-09-2013, 07:24 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the replies!

I'll be honest, but I haven't really read much into PSA, but as I was browsing the sub forums, I did see plenty of references to the XV15; people must be happy with them. I don't think $800 would break the bank since it's only $100 more than I initially planned to spend.... but then look at the shipping price on the HSU. $99 for that, so that brings it to $800, which the PSA is $800 shipped. I'm definitely going to jot this one down because I do like what I see. smile.gif

I think my wife would kill me if I bought into dual subs at the moment, so I definitely got to stick with the single route. Fortunately my receiver does have a second output, so when I'm able to invest into another, I'm at least set there.

I did see someone selling their HSU in the forums, but I'd have to decide if it's worth saving only a few bucks or getting something brand new with the full warranty.

Not forgetting about that Outlaw sub, it also looks darn nice, but it's the least powerful of the bunch.

Hmmm.... decisions decisions....
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post #7 of 37 Old 11-09-2013, 07:39 AM
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Also consider SVS and PSA come standard with 5 yr warranties. HSU charges another 90.00 for the 5yr warranty. So the VTF-3 would come in at 890.00 shipped.
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post #8 of 37 Old 11-09-2013, 07:44 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by basshead81 View Post

Also consider SVS and PSA come standard with 5 yr warranties. HSU charges another 90.00 for the 5yr warranty. So the VTF-3 would come in at 890.00 shipped.

Nice! Thanks for the tip! I didn't look that deep into that just yet... but that's a very good point. Maybe I'm leaning towards the PSA at this point.
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post #9 of 37 Old 11-09-2013, 07:58 AM
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Originally Posted by NAiLs00 View Post


Not forgetting about that Outlaw sub, it also looks darn nice, but it's the least powerful of the bunch.

Not true, in 2 ports mode, the Outlaw is arguably the most powerful of the bunch. Subs have to be judged by the end performance, not the specs. Also the Hsu warranty is 7 years on driver, 2 years on amplifier. For $80 more you can extend the amp warranty to five years.
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post #10 of 37 Old 11-09-2013, 08:03 AM
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Nice! Thanks for the tip! I didn't look that deep into that just yet... but that's a very good point. Maybe I'm leaning towards the PSA at this point.

Imo its the little things that tend to get overlooked alot around here. The XV15 is no doubt the most powerful, but all subs mentioned will have excellent performance and you may not be able to discern any difference unless you consistently listen at max levels.
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post #11 of 37 Old 11-09-2013, 08:07 AM
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Not true, in 2 ports mode, the Outlaw is arguably the most powerful of the bunch. Subs have to be judged by the end performance, not the specs. Also the Hsu warranty is 7 years on driver, 2 years on amplifier. For $80 more you can extend the amp warranty to five years.

It still brings the VTF-3 in at 879.00. In regards to your first statement, that is false.
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post #12 of 37 Old 11-09-2013, 08:44 AM
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Given the reputation for reliability that Hsu subs have, you wouldn't really need an extended warranty anyway. As for the Outlaw and XV15, both these subs have been measured at data-bass.com. In raw overall output, the XV15 wins by a slim margin, but when you factor in compression and distortion, the Outlaw is an overall higher performer.
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post #13 of 37 Old 11-09-2013, 10:07 AM
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Imo its the little things that tend to get overlooked alot around here. The XV15 is no doubt the most powerful, but all subs mentioned will have excellent performance and you may not be able to discern any difference unless you consistently listen at max levels.

I agree with basehead. I did a lot of research and in the end decided to go with PSA but before I had read the posts here on the PSA XV-15 I was going to order the SVS PB12-NSD. In the end any of the subs suggested in this thread (PSA, SVS, HSU and Outlaw) would do well for you. Its well documented throughout many threads that any of these manufacturers are well respected.

 

All other things being equal (meaning I know I would most likely be happy with any of the subs mentioned) it came down to SVS and PSA because of their free shipping, 5 year warranty and incredible customer service. And as I said before, PSA won due to its size and power.

 

I never talked to Outlaw or HSU, I'm sure they have great customer service but I can't comment on it. However, I did talk with SVS and PSA (a lot) and both were great to deal with, I asked them a lot of questions and they always treated me with the utmost professionalism and courtesy. Don't hesitate to email any of the companies you are considering.

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post #14 of 37 Old 11-09-2013, 11:07 AM
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Originally Posted by shadyJ View Post

Given the reputation for reliability that Hsu subs have, you wouldn't really need an extended warranty anyway. As for the Outlaw and XV15, both these subs have been measured at data-bass.com. In raw overall output, the XV15 wins by a slim margin, but when you factor in compression and distortion, the Outlaw is an overall higher performer.


They are not any more reliable then the other ID subs...most of the amp parts(caps and transistors) are sourced from the same country. So Yes the 5yr warranty is very appealing for many. The XV15 wins by more then a slim margin, but anyhow I dont give a ****** smile.gif
Glad your back in these forums stirring things up. It was starting to get awful quiet around here lol.
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post #15 of 37 Old 11-09-2013, 11:38 AM
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The XV15 wins by more then a slim margin, but anyhow I dont give a ****** smile.gif
Glad your back in these forums stirring things up. It was starting to get awful quiet around here lol.

It's good to be back! But yes, the margin of headroom is slim, as can be seen by anyone who visits audioholics.com or data-bass.com where both subs are tested. It's actually surprisingly slim given the larger cone area and amp power of the XV15. I am guessing it's due to a lower sensitivity driver because of the relatively lean magnet mass.
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post #16 of 37 Old 11-09-2013, 11:49 AM
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It's good to be back! But yes, the margin of headroom is slim, as can be seen by anyone who visits audioholics.com or data-bass.com where both subs are tested. It's actually surprisingly slim given the larger cone area and amp power of the XV15. I am guessing it's due to a lower sensitivity driver because of the relatively lean magnet mass.

Interesting. All I know for certain is that I really like my new PSA XV-15. A lot! 

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post #17 of 37 Old 11-09-2013, 12:48 PM
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Given the reputation for reliability that Hsu subs have, you wouldn't really need an extended warranty anyway. As for the Outlaw and XV15, both these subs have been measured at data-bass.com. In raw overall output, the XV15 wins by a slim margin, but when you factor in compression and distortion, the Outlaw is an overall higher performer.

Reputation does nothing for you if you have a warranty issue. If HSU relability were better than the competition they would capitalize on that fact and offer the same or better warranty. In the end HSU determined their drivers are bullet proof when driven by their amp, but the amps are not as reliable as the drivers. Otherwise they would have the same warranty for both amp and driver. (outsider making guesses based on common business practices).

This is in no way saying HSU is bad or unreliable. Just saying they did they same basic cost/warranty review as other companies did and came up with a two year amp warranty. That act alone has removed them from my short list, but then I really value warranties. With my poor luck I tend to use them.

Full disclosure: I do own a set of HSU HB-1s and an HC-1 and really like them a lot and would recommend them, but with no amp they have a 7 year bumper-to-bumper warranty. HSU was also great to work with and answered all my emails. smile.gif
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post #18 of 37 Old 11-09-2013, 06:45 PM
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Interesting. All I know for certain is that I really like my new PSA XV-15. A lot! 

Shady is not a fan of PSA, you will see these type of posts a lot. No biggie he is entitled to his opinion. If you are happy that's all that matters. Btw If you do some research, which it sounds like you already have, its clear which company is currently selling more subwoofers. smile.gif
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Shady is not a fan of PSA, you will see these type of posts a lot. No biggie he is entitled to his opinion. If you are happy that's all that matters. Btw If you do some research, which it sounds like you already have, its clear which company is currently selling more subwoofers. smile.gif



As much shady is not a fan of PSA, basshead81 you are borderline PSA fanboy smile.gif. Sometimes I feel you work for PSA but I understand you love your XV15 :rolleyes:s, I ain't gonna lie you are one of the reasons I ordered XV15 and love it.
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post #20 of 37 Old 11-09-2013, 06:59 PM
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As much shady is not a fan of PSA, basshead81 you are borderline PSA fanboy smile.gif. Sometimes I feel you work for PSA but I understand you love your XV15 :rolleyes:s, I ain't gonna lie you are one of the reasons I ordered XV15 and love it.

Actually If you read many of my posts I recommend Rythmik more then any other sub...but hey everyone is entitled to their own opinions. wink.gif
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post #21 of 37 Old 11-09-2013, 07:06 PM
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Shady is not a fan of PSA, you will see these type of posts a lot. No biggie he is entitled to his opinion. If you are happy that's all that matters. Btw If you do some research, which it sounds like you already have, its clear which company is currently selling more subwoofers. smile.gif

Yep, I've noticed that through all the threads I have read. Almost sounds personal at at times. But we all have our opinions and we are all entitled to them. BTW the posts where you and shady debated the merits of the different subs did a lot to educate me in my search for the right sub for me, so I appreciate the knowledge both of you shared. I liked the points you and others made about PSA and it went a long way to helping me choose the XV-15, so thanks for your help.

 

I also like the way most people here give credit to the companies that they didn't chose to go with (as long as they are worthy of recognition). I really believe that PSA, SVS, HSU, Outlaw and Rythmik are all solid choices for subs and depending on one's budget, needs and HT, any one of them would be a great choice. These forums are a gold mine of knowledge. 

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Yep, I've noticed that through all the threads I have read. Almost sounds personal at at times. But we all have our opinions and we are all entitled to them. BTW the posts where you and shady debated the merits of the different subs did a lot to educate me in my search for the right sub for me, so I appreciate the knowledge both of you shared. I liked the points you and others made about PSA and it went a long way to helping me choose the XV-15, so thanks for your help.

I also like the way most people here give credit to the companies that they didn't chose to go with. I really believe that PSA, SVS, HSU, Outlaw and Rythmik are all solid choices for subs and depending on one's budget and HT any one of them would be a great choice. These forums are a gold mine of knowledge. 




Well said smile.gif.
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Since the OP mentioned the XV15 being $100 over his budget, I will throw the SVS PC12-NSD into the mix for $699 shipped.
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post #24 of 37 Old 11-10-2013, 06:12 AM
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Since the OP mentioned the XV15 being $100 over his budget, I will throw the SVS PC12-NSD into the mix for $699 shipped.

I think thats is a solid choice as well for the price, performance, form factor, and warranty! Oh wait does that make me a SVS fanboy now?
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Actually If you read many of my posts I recommend Rythmik more then any other sub...but hey everyone is entitled to their own opinions. wink.gif

You also restrain the "basshead" type tendency that some people have to always recommend the biggest most powerful sub--the "you can never have too much sub" primary guiding principle--and often offer others suggestions contradictory to that type of attitude, recommendations that take into consideration other needs of an OP. I'd say you are pretty balanced with only a mild bias towards PSA smile.gif

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I think thats is a solid choice as well for the price, performance, form factor, and warranty! Oh wait does that make me a SVS fanboy now?

No. You are a "good sub" fanboy. It's not always about max SPL, right? smile.gif

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You also restrain the "basshead" type tendency that some people have to always recommend the biggest most powerful sub--the "you can never have too much sub" primary guiding principle--and often offer others suggestions contradictory to that type of attitude, recommendations that take into consideration other needs of an OP. I'd say you are pretty balanced with only a mild bias towards PSA smile.gif

And then there’s me, I don’t belong anywhere. I’m into DIY along with other ID subs sealed and vented. Oh and now PR! Everybody knows I’m a little bent towards SVS though even though I recommend other subs all the time. Ok cel you just recommended the PB1000 in another thread. I disagree, but in the context you recommended it I understand. I do have one pic of it so I thought I would throw it in. I used it in our office for a short while. Tried it out in the main, but at the time it was so lossy that it didn’t fare a chance. It’s on the left. The one with a 10" driver you recomended for 2500 cu ft. tongue.gifbiggrin.gif


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post #28 of 37 Old 11-10-2013, 11:08 AM
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No. You are a "good sub" fanboy. It's not always about max SPL, right? smile.gif

Nice new avatar lol

No subwoofer I've heard has been able to produce the bass I've experienced in the Corps!

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post #29 of 37 Old 11-10-2013, 12:22 PM
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And then there’s me, I don’t belong anywhere. I’m into DIY along with other ID subs sealed and vented. Oh and now PR! Everybody knows I’m a little bent towards SVS though even though I recommend other subs all the time. Ok cel you just recommended the PB1000 in another thread. I disagree, but in the context you recommended it I understand.
Yeah. I was thinking of the guys budget and overall setup if you mean that Pioneer speaker setup thread. The PB-1000 supposedly can do 108dB from 40Hz-80Hz. Might not be enough for many of us, but for a budget setup, not to shabby a choice smile.gif That, I would rather go with those towers for a mainly HT setup.
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Nice new avatar lol

Thanks. I stole it from Sony smile.gif
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cel4145 is offline  
post #30 of 37 Old 11-10-2013, 05:41 PM
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Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post

You also restrain the "basshead" type tendency that some people have to always recommend the biggest most powerful sub--the "you can never have too much sub" primary guiding principle--and often offer others suggestions contradictory to that type of attitude, recommendations that take into consideration other needs of an OP. I'd say you are pretty balanced with only a mild bias towards PSA smile.gif

I agree with that! Thanks Cel!!
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