Is the HSU STF-2 best bang for under $400 dollars. - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 49 Old 01-12-2004, 02:23 PM - Thread Starter
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I am lookign to get a sub for under 400 dollars and have always heard good things about HSU subs. IS the HSU stf2 a good quality sub. Has anyone tried this sub and what shoudl i get for under 400 dollars. Also if I have sattelite speakers shoudl they be set to small on the receiver. How will this sub sound best since my receiver throws anythign less than 100 I beleive to the sub..
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post #2 of 49 Old 01-12-2004, 02:52 PM
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It would be down between the Adire Audio RAVA and the HSU STF-2. I have no experience with the Rava, but I do own the HSU STF-2 and have been very suprised by what this inexpensive box is capable of. It comes highly recommended.
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post #3 of 49 Old 01-12-2004, 02:57 PM
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The HSU is a decent sub, but for the price I think I'd go with the Adire Rava. http://www.adireaudio.com/home_audio...eries/rava.htm

Same price, but you upgrade to a 12" driver, 250W amp, and (if it matters to you) an oak veneered cabinet. The driver used in this is the Shiva, which anyone in the DIY circle will tell you is a GREAT driver. The Rava will outperform the HSU in every way.

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post #4 of 49 Old 01-12-2004, 03:06 PM
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Looking at the manufacturer's specs, it seems to be very close between the Rava and STF-2. The Rava has a nicer finish, the STF-2 seems to have bit more extension.

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post #5 of 49 Old 01-12-2004, 03:07 PM
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I don't want to start a "spec" war, but 250w amp and 12" driver doesn't really mean that it will "outpeform"

+0/-3 dB: 27 Hz to crossover point. Does that mean at 27hz its down -3db?

Spec wise -1db 25hz STF-2.

But specs mean jack really
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post #6 of 49 Old 01-12-2004, 03:22 PM
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I just got an STF 2 and I love it!

Regards,
Karl
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post #7 of 49 Old 01-12-2004, 04:45 PM
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I've heard nothing but good things about the STF-2
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post #8 of 49 Old 01-12-2004, 05:03 PM
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People always seem to get their nickers in a twist over spec sheet numbers, but in real life you simply will never sit down to listen to a CD full of numbers. So take them with a grain of salt and go and have a good comparative listen with your own ears. Also its just as vital to compare equipment in the same room and with the same gear because that's the only way you can judge what is the better subwoofer.

I have the VTF-2 and never heard the Rava. But I have definitely heard that the Rava is a decent sub, so the best recommendation anyone can make is to line up the STF-2 vs the Rava shootout, and then see which one you actually prefer. That is exactly the sort of comp that I did, and it's how I ended up with my excellent VTF-2.

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post #9 of 49 Old 01-12-2004, 05:14 PM
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Looking at the STF-1 (maybe the STF-2) but I don't think the downfiring design is going to work for me. Won't downfiring mean more "boom-boom" for the neighbors downstairs as compared to using a front-firing sub?

If so, how are these alternatives?

Polk 8" 100-Watt Subwoofer, 28Hz - 180Hz, ($299)
Velodyne 8" 130-Watt Subwoofer, 35Hz- 140Hz, ($299)

Size is an issue..can't really go too much wider than 12" (for the sub itself). Height/depth not an issue. Other suggestions welcome. :)
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post #10 of 49 Old 01-12-2004, 06:06 PM
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Fundamental difference between the two models is that the Rava is a sealed acoustic suspension design whereas the STF-2 is a ported design. From the specs it looks like the STF-2's tuned frequency is about 25 Hz, which is also about where the in-room response tails off on the Rava as well (at least this is what it measure with my Rava at home). The difference between sealed and ported cabinets is that the ported sub's response tails off very quickly after the tuned frequency, whereas the sealed sub starts to drop sooner (assuming identical drivers and amps) but tails off more gradually. In addition, the ported cabinets are more efficient and can typically go louder.

Sealed subs require more power to get up to higher SPLs, but subjectively they can sound tighter and more "musical" because of that more gradual roll off at the low end. That's why when I was shopping for subs, I specifically looked for a sealed design.

But, no matter which subwoofer you go with, I would strongly recommend that you also include a parametric equalizer with your purchase, especially if you know that you got some problematic room acoustics. Even a tight low-Q design like the Rava sounded unbearably boomy out of the box in my room. With some measuring and tuning using the parametric EQ, the sound is now very tight, extended, and well integrated with the other speakers. IMO, an equalized subwoofer will more often than not outperform an unequalized sub. That's why I think that these subwoofer comparisons are often way off-base, because they have no provisions for addressing the room acoustics.

My before and after frequency response is linked below.

http://hometown.aol.com/sfwooch/myhomepage/subtest.gif
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post #11 of 49 Old 01-12-2004, 06:06 PM
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The ADIRE and HSU are at the top of the class. RAVA is sealed, while STF is ported, so that is one reason why the HSU can get away with so much output with 10 inch driver. Different design and look, depend on what you are looking for.
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post #12 of 49 Old 01-15-2004, 08:43 PM
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I want to add is that the Rava will count more on room get good extension. While there is nothing wrong with this, I just want to point out that if the room the subwoofer has to pressurize is large you might only get a little or you might not get any useful room gain at all. How big is the room it's going in? Does it open to other rooms?

If your room is large, then I think the Hsu might be a better choice.
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post #13 of 49 Old 01-16-2004, 07:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Ddavidson
People always seem to get their nickers in a twist over spec sheet numbers, but in real life you simply will never sit down to listen to a CD full of numbers.
Ddavidson
On the contrary, CDs are digital and thus all just numbers (0 or 1).
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post #14 of 49 Old 01-16-2004, 08:31 AM
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Quote:
CDs are digital and thus all just numbers (0 or 1).
ROFLOL
Funny (stupid) thing is I never thought of it like that.
See everything you say can always seem to be able to be taken in two different ways. - LOL



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post #15 of 49 Old 01-16-2004, 09:02 AM
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Knowing a little about the Hsu driver and a lot about the Shiva I'd have to say I'd go with the Rava regardless of room size. The STF-2 might have a slight advantage down low but you will get more output from the Rava due to the driver's larger Vd (volume displacement). The STF-2 will probably start to distort sooner than the Rava on very loud bass passages.

Now don't think I'm trying to take anything away from the STF-2 because I'm not. I've heard nothing but great things about the Hsu products. I'm just saying that I'd fully expect the Rava to have more output through it's usable bandwidth than the STF-2.

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post #16 of 49 Old 01-16-2004, 09:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Brian Bunge
Knowing a little about the Hsu driver and a lot about the Shiva I'd have to say I'd go with the Rava regardless of room size. The STF-2 might have a slight advantage down low but you will get more output from the Rava due to the driver's larger Vd (volume displacement). The STF-2 will probably start to distort sooner than the Rava on very loud bass passages.

Now don't think I'm trying to take anything away from the STF-2 because I'm not. I've heard nothing but great things about the Hsu products. I'm just saying that I'd fully expect the Rava to have more output through it's usable bandwidth than the STF-2.
From reading some of Brian's other posts I'm smart enough to realize that he knows more about this stuff than me. While what I said makes sense(at least to me it does), I'd be more inclined to listen to Brian over me.

How often do you see a post like this instead of it turning into an argument:)?
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post #17 of 49 Old 01-16-2004, 05:08 PM
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The STF-2 is a very capable sub and can produce very high SPL very cleanly all the way down to a true 25Hz. This is a welcome extension to the VTF-2. If you look at VTF-2 reviews, you will see that one of the older versions had 109.7db's averaged SPL using 10% limit of distortion, and 107.1db's averaged SPL and 91db's SPL at 20Hz when using it's output and extension tuning modes. This puts this product in very good company. Other reviews of the VTF-2 have supported these numbers. The STF-2 has more port diameter, more power, and a more capable driver (having much more to do with syngery of design than maximum xmax).

It is difficult to compare Rava to STF-2 because you are comparing sealed to ported, both using different design characteristic.
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post #18 of 49 Old 01-16-2004, 05:37 PM
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Yes, it's difficult, but not impossible. The Rava will probably have a slightly higher anechoic F3, but it will also have a much shallower rolloff (12dB/octave vs. 24 or 36dB/octave for the ported sub). So the Rava could quite possibly have better low end extension, and will probably have higher SPL above 30Hz.

But like I said before, I'm sure the STF-2 is an excellent sub. I'd just be more inclined to try the Rava.

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post #19 of 49 Old 01-16-2004, 05:50 PM
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Unfortunately there is no reviewer who has stress tested both of these product under the same condition. They are not meant to be compared as such, as they are quite different in design. I do know that older VTF-2's were capable of clean 108-112db's in the 30-50Hz range, and true 25Hz extension. Lack of output has never really been an issue with any Hsu sub. I just cannot imagine that being an issue when compared to other sub in this value segment.

There is no question that Hsu STF and VTF, and ADIRE Rava are almost hands down at the top of the class in this commercial pricing range.
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post #20 of 49 Old 01-16-2004, 06:06 PM
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Quote:
There is no question that Hsu STF and VTF, and ADIRE Rava are almost hands down at the top of the class in this commercial pricing range.
Very true. :)

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RAD Home Theater
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post #21 of 49 Old 01-16-2004, 06:40 PM
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markotran is taking this thread in the right direction.

Trying to identify the "best" product across all customers in any class is not possible as there are too many subtle and subjective differences - tastes and opinions vary widely.

What I have always strived to purchase is equipment that is clearly "one of the best" within their price categories, or at least "above average". Hopefully, I've succeeded.


Bill

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post #22 of 49 Old 01-16-2004, 09:54 PM
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Of course there is never going to be a clear cut outright winner in any audio product class. The regular recommendations that you see are all pretty much at the head of the class so "The best advice is to give those a personal listen".

Just as taste buds vary "so to do ears", but those regularly mentioned standout's are a good place to start your elimination process.


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post #23 of 49 Old 01-17-2004, 07:27 AM
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I think the concensus is you cant go wrong with either.

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post #24 of 49 Old 01-17-2004, 04:23 PM
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Have had the STF-2 for three days now and barely getting enought time to test things out. But so far the sub is performing wonderfully. Plenty low enough for me, plenty loud enough, looks ok for the price and makes the HT experience a whole lot better. Replaced a 10" Boston sub that cost almost the same but the STF-2 performance is way beyond that. Easily fills the 2400 cubic foot room with great low end. Price at Comp USA was under factory plus another 10% off due to sale. Hard to pass on such a great unit at that price.

Joe
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post #25 of 49 Old 01-17-2004, 06:15 PM
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Just jumped on the STF-2 Compusa reduced plus 10% off.
First one taken home was DOA no power. Second is doing great. Tried the Finding Nemo test and no problems. I think I got a great deal.
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post #26 of 49 Old 01-18-2004, 12:22 PM
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The STF-2 can be purchased at CompUSA?
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post #27 of 49 Old 01-18-2004, 01:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by jwheeler
The STF-2 can be purchased at CompUSA?
Yup
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post #28 of 49 Old 01-18-2004, 01:34 PM - Thread Starter
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how bout the velodyne dls3750 which is there 10 inch sub. i can get it for 450 and i heard that velodyne makes the best subs on top fo that i think the bass is cleaner and as low as the hsu. what do you think
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post #29 of 49 Old 01-18-2004, 06:05 PM
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so what can the STF-2 be had for at compusa. Pm me please
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post #30 of 49 Old 01-18-2004, 06:38 PM
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At $315 + tax at Comp USA I had to try it out. I really wanted to get an SVS 25-31 or the VFT-3 but at $600+ after shipping it made me start to think..try the STF-2 and take it back if it's defective - no problem.

So, I tried the Darla scene and I heard some audible noise but it turned out to be a rattle from my tile floors and the sub's spikes. I put some weight down on it and BOOM BOOM BOOM Mr. Brown makes thunder! - no problems.

Even though I'd rather have the SVS or HSU VFT3 I've got to say there's some great value here and it'll take on a lot of subs costing double or more.
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