Has anyone heard both the PSA XS30 and Epik Empire? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 18 Old 03-07-2014, 03:57 PM - Thread Starter
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I've been searching AVS and the internet for comparisons between these two subs to no avail. I'm sure it's out there but I haven't been able to find it so I thought I'd start my own inquiry.

I've been contemplating "upgrading" from a single Empire to either a Rythmic FV15HP, SVS SB13-U, or dual XS15s. In my research I've come across a few posts/reviews that compares the XS30 favorably to more expensive subs (SB13-U, PB13, etc.). IF, big IF, the Empire is similar in performance to the XS30, then I think I can eliminate the single sub upgrade path. However, if the performance between the Empire and XS30 is greater, one beefier sub might still make for a decent upgrade.

Bonus question, of the subs I listed above (FV15HP, SB13-U, or dual XS15s), which would you pick? Due to size constraints, I could fit another SB13U down the road but not another FV15HP.

I have a smallish to medium space. The main area is 14 x 14 with a vaulted ceiling, but it's open to one hallway and through an aperture it opens to the dinning room.

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post #2 of 18 Old 03-07-2014, 04:22 PM
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I'd add the XS30 or really think about trying a Reaction audio BPS-15, which seems would be very close in overall performance to you empire- $879 with shipping. Either way you'll have a dual- dual sub setup. smile.gif

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post #3 of 18 Old 03-07-2014, 04:26 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kini62 View Post

I'd add the XS30 or really think about trying a Reaction audio BPS-15, which seems would be very close in overall performance to you empire- $879 with shipping. Either way you'll have a dual- dual sub setup. smile.gif

Thanks for the reply Kini! By the way, fellow Hawaiian here smile.gif Currently live in San Diego though.

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post #4 of 18 Old 03-07-2014, 04:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jahjd2000 View Post

Thanks for the reply Kini! By the way, fellow Hawaiian here smile.gif Currently live in San Diego though.

Yes, San Diego- the 2nd best weather in the US. smile.gif

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post #5 of 18 Old 03-07-2014, 04:48 PM
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I would say it depends on what you want.  I know of two forum members who have had/have the XS30 and SB13 Ultra in their homes to compare.  Both state that they prefer the SB13 for music, but that the XS30 is better for home theater, and good for music, just not quite as good as the ultra.  I think it is hard for a single 13" to compete with dual 15's, even though it is a superb 13".  So if it is music only, the SB13 may be better, although more costly.

 

As far as the XS30 vs the FV15HP, that is a harder question to answer imo.  The FV15HP is obviously very large, but performance wise, it is a monster for the price.

 

In my opinion, here are the pros and cons if you are deciding between the FV15HP and the XS30:

 

The XS30 has a shallow rolloff and should get strong room gain starting at 40Hz in your room.  So sealed should work very good in your room.  This sub is somewhat set it and forget it.  No ports to plug or unplug, no sacrificing mid or upper bass in exchange for extension.  No complicated settings adjustments.  No risk of port noise or chuffing when driven hard.  And it will likely have superior output to the FV15 above 40 or 50 Hz.  It might give up some SPL below 25 Hz, but I don't know for sure that it will play cleanly while doing so.  I do know some people mention port noise or chuffing when driven very hard, others have never noticed it.

 

So I think the Rythmik might be stronger below 25-30 Hz, but how much it is hard to say.  However, when set in 12Hz mode for max extension, I believe it does give up response up high.

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post #6 of 18 Old 03-07-2014, 05:25 PM
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Get dual XV15's! That will smoke the Empire!




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post #7 of 18 Old 03-07-2014, 05:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gov View Post

Get dual XV15's! That will smoke the Empire!

Actually, the empire, despite lousy reliability due to bad amps, was an admirable performer for its price.  It matches the XV15 from 50Hz and below, and walks on it above.


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post #8 of 18 Old 03-07-2014, 05:49 PM
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JoshP has had both the Empire and a XS30...he said the XS30 was a better sub, but the empire was no slouch. I think the XS30 would be a good mate. Also the BPS215 looks promising but I refrain from recomending it until atleast one of thier subs has been tested so we have a idea of what Reaction audio is workin with. smile.gif
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post #9 of 18 Old 03-07-2014, 05:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bear123 View Post

Actually, the empire, despite lousy reliability due to bad amps, was an admirable performer for its price.  It matches the XV15 from 50Hz and below, and walks on it above.

Yes, I agree. I just ditched my Epik Phoenix for dual XV15's.
Dual XV15's offer better overall performance than a single Empire I would bet.




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post #10 of 18 Old 03-07-2014, 05:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gov View Post


Yes, I agree. I just ditched my Epik Phoenix for dual XV15's.
Dual XV15's offer better overall performance than a single Empire I would bet.

Oh sorry, I totally agree with that.  Sorry I thought you meant one for one.  But even then I would take a single XV15 as I have heard no quality issues yet from PSA.  Thats one of the reasons I bought the XS30.


AVR:       Yamaha RXV-375

Display:  Panasonic  TH-50PC77U

LCR:       Hsu HB1.2  HC1.2

Sub:       (2) PSA XV15se

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post #11 of 18 Old 03-19-2014, 01:23 PM - Thread Starter
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Right now I've narrowed my options to the following:

- Dual XV15s

or

- Epik Empire (nearfield next to sofa) and add dual SVS SB-2000s to my front stage

What would you do? I'm liking the 3 sub approach...plus it's less expensive by about $300.

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post #12 of 18 Old 03-19-2014, 01:33 PM
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If I were you and you have the space, I would add an XS30 to your existing empire.  To me this would be the best match for the time being, until the Empire bites the dust.  This would give you similar dual opposed 15" sealed, x 2.  I believe the XS30 would be a step up in performance from the Epik as well.

 

If you cannot fit two larger subs like this, then adding two smaller sealed should do great for smoothing.

 

Dual SB2000's or dual XS15's 


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post #13 of 18 Old 03-19-2014, 02:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bear123 View Post

If I were you and you have the space, I would add an XS30 to your existing empire.  To me this would be the best match for the time being, until the Empire bites the dust.  This would give you similar dual opposed 15" sealed, x 2.  I believe the XS30 would be a step up in performance from the Epik as well.

If you cannot fit two larger subs like this, then adding two smaller sealed should do great for smoothing.

Dual SB2000's or dual XS15's 

Thanks for the suggestion. If I could fit a XS30 that would be my first choice. Unfortunately I can't fit it next to my sofa due to width constraints and I don't think the wifey would approve of it upfront, unless she could incorporate it into the room somehow without it being a big black box. Although...she did get used to the size of the Horizon center channel.

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post #14 of 18 Old 03-19-2014, 02:08 PM
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In that case then, adding two smaller sealed subs to your setup should make for quite an incredible subwoofer system in your small room.  Do you have room measurement equipment or AVR sub eq ability?


AVR:       Yamaha RXV-375

Display:  Panasonic  TH-50PC77U

LCR:       Hsu HB1.2  HC1.2

Sub:       (2) PSA XV15se

Blu Ray:  Sony BDP-S5100

Apple TV

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post #15 of 18 Old 03-19-2014, 02:24 PM - Thread Starter
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I don't have room measurement software but I am considering buying the minidsp unit (I just haven't gotten around to ordering it). I do have a Denon 4311 with Sub EQ HT so I could calibrate the SB-2000s as a pair and then the Empire.

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post #16 of 18 Old 03-19-2014, 02:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bear123 View Post

If I were you and you have the space, I would add an XS30 to your existing empire.  To me this would be the best match for the time being, until the Empire bites the dust.  This would give you similar dual opposed 15" sealed, x 2.  I believe the XS30 would be a step up in performance from the Epik as well.

If you cannot fit two larger subs like this, then adding two smaller sealed should do great for smoothing.

Dual SB2000's or dual XS15's 

I wouldn't mix any new sub with the Empire. The Empire uses a steep high pass filter and rolls off rather harder below 20hz, which takes away a key benefit of having a sealed sub, extremly shallow rolloff. Better of replacing it both for better performance and for possibly of having a supported product.

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post #17 of 18 Old 03-19-2014, 07:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jahjd2000 View Post

Thanks for the suggestion. If I could fit a XS30 that would be my first choice. Unfortunately I can't fit it next to my sofa due to width constraints and I don't think the wifey would approve of it upfront, unless she could incorporate it into the room somehow without it being a big black box. Although...she did get used to the size of the Horizon center channel.

XS30'S make a great end table. after the intial shock it just becomes part of the LR....


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post #18 of 18 Old 03-19-2014, 08:13 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by mercury View Post

XS30'S make a great end table. after the intial shock it just becomes part of the LR....


*

Great minds think alike smile.gif

Here's my Empire playing with his living room friends.

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