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Old 08-11-2014, 10:06 PM - Thread Starter
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Which Sub to Buy?

Outlaw LFM-EX, PSA XS15se or XV15se, HSU VTF-3 MK4, etc.? The room is 18' W X 15' L with an 8' rising to 12' cathedral ceiling. Movies and music equally. I've been reading about all these subs for days and I'm about ready to just put all the models in a hat, blindfold myself and pick one. I've got a $1000 budget. Any guidance will be greatly appreciated. I'm open to other choices as well, I'm already going braindead. Help!
Regards, Sam
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Old 08-11-2014, 10:56 PM
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Actually, your idea about the hat sounds good, because you can't buy a bad sub from any that you listed. Your room falls in the medium size category @ approx 2,700 cu. ft. and all those subs should do extremely well for you. However, out of the I.D. companies listed, PSA has the best warranty and free shipping both ways during their 30-day trial period. If the above companies' products aren't difficult enough already to make a decision, you also have SVS (same 5-year warranty as PSA and free shipping both ways) and Reaction Audio with very impressive products that will serve you just as well.

No one said it would be easy . But it should be fun. Great products and great companies. Go to their websites, look around and check their lineups, then talk to the folks at each company and try to get a good feel for the people, and ask questions concerning your needs.
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Old 08-12-2014, 01:13 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by dsrussell View Post
Actually, your idea about the hat sounds good, because you can't buy a bad sub from any that you listed. Your room falls in the medium size category @ approx 2,700 cu. ft. and all those subs should do extremely well for you. However, out of the I.D. companies listed, PSA has the best warranty and free shipping both ways during their 30-day trial period. If the above companies' products aren't difficult enough already to make a decision, you also have SVS (same 5-year warranty as PSA and free shipping both ways) and Reaction Audio with very impressive products that will serve you just as well.

No one said it would be easy . But it should be fun. Great products and great companies. Go to their websites, look around and check their lineups, then talk to the folks at each company and try to get a good feel for the people, and ask questions concerning your needs.
Yep, I think I'm going with the hat.
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Old 08-12-2014, 04:15 AM
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It sounds like we're both pretty much in the same boat. I've been researching the subs in the <$1000 range, and without going DYI, the XV15se seems to be the one to beat for a single sub.

When the Outlaw was on sale, it was tempting due to the price, but I didn't pull the trigger since it ultimately wasn't in the same league as the XV15se.

The problem I have now is that the more I research, the more I'm tempted to jump up into the next price bracket.
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Old 08-12-2014, 04:49 AM
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I'm bias, but I would go PSA. Better warranty and electronics. Easier to trust a newer, more efficient digital amp in the PSA as opposed to the legacy analog amps that HSU uses. HSU service is also said to be terrific and the subs perform very well, so I'm not dumping on them. You can't go wrong with the choices you've listed.


Since you listen to movies and music equally, the XS15se would probably be my choice. I've owned both PSA units. The XS is great with music, texture and very good with movies. The XV is the raw output beast. I'm 100% movies & games so ultimately stuck with the XV.

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Old 08-12-2014, 06:06 AM
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No doubt the XV15se from that list......

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Old 08-12-2014, 07:23 AM
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I would get two of the outlaw lfm-1 plus when on sale for $499 shipped. This will beat any of the single subs mentioned. If you have to go with 1 sub, I would get the PSA XV15se.
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Old 08-12-2014, 08:16 AM
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Yep, I think I'm going with the hat.
Yep. A hat would work well. You can't go wrong, and arguments about which are better are more like classic Mustang vs. Camaro debates

You could also add SVS PB-2000 to your list.

If you have a wife, might let her make the choice based on which one she likes the best. Then complement her on how great her choice sounds. Could go better for future audio purchases that way
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Old 08-12-2014, 08:49 AM
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Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post
Yep. A hat would work well. You can't go wrong, and arguments about which are better are more like classic Mustang vs. Camaro debates

You could also add SVS PB-2000 to your list.

If you have a wife, might let her make the choice based on which one she likes the best. Then complement her on how great her choice sounds. Could go better for future audio purchases that way
HAHA! Love it! You know a guy is married when this comes into the equation. To get WAF on my XV15se I told her to look at it like an end table!

She really appreciates good audio at this point so she loves the XV15se for what it is as well. Being a good end table was a plus!
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Old 08-12-2014, 08:59 AM
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Originally Posted by slovell1 View Post
Outlaw LFM-EX, PSA XS15se or XV15se, HSU VTF-3 MK4, etc.? The room is 18' W X 15' L with an 8' rising to 12' cathedral ceiling. Movies and music equally. I've been reading about all these subs for days and I'm about ready to just put all the models in a hat, blindfold myself and pick one. I've got a $1000 budget. Any guidance will be greatly appreciated. I'm open to other choices as well, I'm already going braindead. Help!
Regards, Sam
From Power Sound Audio it will pretty much come down to your loudest listening levels with action oriented DVDs.

If you have calibrated the system and keep things at say....9dB - 12dB under reference levels, the single XS15se will be fine here. I'd expect extension down to the 8hz to 12hz range and plenty of headroom for your listening habits. If, however, you push the volume to much louder levels, perhaps even approaching full reference levels with films like Lord of the Rings, War of the Worlds, Oblivion, World War Z, etc....the XV15se is the better choice. You will be trading off the deepest extension for more headroom above 18-20hz...but that is usually a good trade..

Feel free to jump into our chat option on the website too if you have any other questions,

Tom V.
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Old 08-12-2014, 09:29 AM
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Originally Posted by BostonHxC View Post
HAHA! Love it! You know a guy is married when this comes into the equation. To get WAF on my XV15se I told her to look at it like an end table!

She really appreciates good audio at this point so she loves the XV15se for what it is as well. Being a good end table was a plus!
Im still trying to figure out how to convince my wife that my 2x 10ft3 boxes would be good end tables. lol.
She asked why they needed to be soo damn big

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Old 08-12-2014, 10:28 AM
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Im still trying to figure out how to convince my wife that my 2x 10ft3 boxes would be good end tables. lol.
She asked why they needed to be soo damn big

Doesn't she realize size matters :-)
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Old 08-12-2014, 10:54 AM
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For under $1k, I would go with a Hsu VTF15h. Lots of configurability, tons of output, and decent extension. Also a very reliable brand, and $50 off at the moment which puts it under $1k shipped for the time being. Aside from that, I would be looking at the Reaction PV 15X. Its from a new company, but it promises to be a powerhouse. The specs are excellent, and the driver looks very good.
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Old 08-12-2014, 11:51 AM - Thread Starter
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For under $1k, I would go with a Hsu VTF15h. Lots of configurability, tons of output, and decent extension. Also a very reliable brand, and $50 off at the moment which puts it under $1k shipped for the time being. Aside from that, I would be looking at the Reaction PV 15X. Its from a new company, but it promises to be a powerhouse. The specs are excellent, and the driver looks very good.
I'm thinking maybe I need a hat big enough to hold an XV15se?
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Old 08-12-2014, 12:13 PM - Thread Starter
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From Power Sound Audio it will pretty much come down to your loudest listening levels with action oriented DVDs.

If you have calibrated the system and keep things at say....9dB - 12dB under reference levels, the single XS15se will be fine here. I'd expect extension down to the 8hz to 12hz range and plenty of headroom for your listening habits. If, however, you push the volume to much louder levels, perhaps even approaching full reference levels with films like Lord of the Rings, War of the Worlds, Oblivion, World War Z, etc....the XV15se is the better choice. You will be trading off the deepest extension for more headroom above 18-20hz...but that is usually a good trade..

Feel free to jump into our chat option on the website too if you have any other questions,

Tom V.
Power Sound Audio
I listen to movies and music at moderate to moderate + levels but not planet cracking earth shattering levels. I do enjoy the thump in the chest but not overwhelmingly so. My musical tastes are classic rock, blues, and jazz. Big Steely Dan fan for the quality of their recordings. I also listen to a lot of vinyl. I'm having problems deciding between sealed or ported. I don't want to end up lacking bottom with movie content to get better response with music and vice-versa. Hell. I'm having trouble deciding which hat to use.
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Old 08-12-2014, 12:19 PM - Thread Starter
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It sounds like we're both pretty much in the same boat. I've been researching the subs in the <$1000 range, and without going DYI, the XV15se seems to be the one to beat for a single sub.

When the Outlaw was on sale, it was tempting due to the price, but I didn't pull the trigger since it ultimately wasn't in the same league as the XV15se.

The problem I have now is that the more I research, the more I'm tempted to jump up into the next price bracket.
Want to borrow my hat? You could also use the hat to panhandle to cover the cost of moving up.
"Will sub for food"?
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Old 08-12-2014, 12:47 PM
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Originally Posted by slovell1 View Post
I listen to movies and music at moderate to moderate + levels but not planet cracking earth shattering levels. I do enjoy the thump in the chest but not overwhelmingly so. My musical tastes are classic rock, blues, and jazz. Big Steely Dan fan for the quality of their recordings. I also listen to a lot of vinyl. I'm having problems deciding between sealed or ported. I don't want to end up lacking bottom with movie content to get better response with music and vice-versa. Hell. I'm having trouble deciding which hat to use.
From your description, you are like many people here as far as sound listening levels. Musical peaks for me rarely get much over the 85 dB level at the listening position, although I have driven them around the 90 dB level on occasion. To me, that is extremely loud. I also have cathedral ceilings and a larger volume to fill (approx 3,500 cu. ft. that is rather open), and even the small but mighty SVS SB13-Ultra was able to fill that volume without issues. I also have a PSA XS30 in my family room (about the same volume, and that room is also rather open) and this sub will shake up everything with ease. Both of these subs are sealed. I also suspect that the XS15se (new driver and DSP) will be almost as potent with movies and be an equal to the Ultra in music (and for a lot less money).

Again, there are no wrong choices here, just a bit better choices depending upon your space, your needs and depth of pocketbook (or hat).

Last edited by dsrussell; 08-12-2014 at 02:26 PM.
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Old 08-12-2014, 12:50 PM
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Originally Posted by slovell1 View Post
I listen to movies and music at moderate to moderate + levels but not planet cracking earth shattering levels. I do enjoy the thump in the chest but not overwhelmingly so. My musical tastes are classic rock, blues, and jazz. Big Steely Dan fan for the quality of their recordings. I also listen to a lot of vinyl. I'm having problems deciding between sealed or ported. I don't want to end up lacking bottom with movie content to get better response with music and vice-versa. Hell. I'm having trouble deciding which hat to use.
In that case, I would call PSA, SVS, and HSU Research and see what each recommends for your needs. Then make your best guess between them. I'm sure you would be excited about any of their recommendations

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Old 08-12-2014, 02:06 PM
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Originally Posted by slovell1 View Post
I listen to movies and music at moderate to moderate + levels but not planet cracking earth shattering levels. I do enjoy the thump in the chest but not overwhelmingly so. My musical tastes are classic rock, blues, and jazz. Big Steely Dan fan for the quality of their recordings. I also listen to a lot of vinyl. I'm having problems deciding between sealed or ported. I don't want to end up lacking bottom with movie content to get better response with music and vice-versa. Hell. I'm having trouble deciding which hat to use.
Well, it is important to remember that sealed and ported will usually sound VERY similar as long as the FR is close AND as long as neither device bumps into clean output limitations.

In this case, the XS15se and XV15se both have VERY similar FR curves from about 20-22hz to 150hz. So they are going to sound VERY similar with 99% of all source material....at least until the XS15se approaches its output limits in the 15-30hz range.

The real key here is determining the clean output expectations for the XS15se in your room environment. Then we can decide if that will be enough for your listening habits. Given the room size, I'd expect 100-106dB from 10hz to 20hz, 109-115dB from 25hz-40hz. and 115-121dB from 40hz to 100hz from a well placed XS15se.

So if you figure "moderately loud" = say 12-15dB under reference level...the XS15se should be fine. But the closer to reference level things get, the more likely you would prefer the XV15se over the XS15se

Tom V.
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