Reaserched and narrowed – appreciate advice on sub and placement – Submersive, LMS 5400 (DIY), or 3 Rythmiks F15HP (DIY) - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 07-12-2013, 10:02 PM - Thread Starter
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Question – I’d appreciate some advice on selection and placement of a sealed sub in my small living room. In the future I might add a second big sub or 4th Rythmik but wouldn’t for a while.

Primary subs identified (lots of research/reading):

Some quick notes:
  • Read a few months ago about the Seaton Submersive HP and it really got me interested in a new sub (currently using a Focal 13” Profile SW 908 – clean but doesn’t go deep). LMS 5400 because I’m a major DIYer at heart. Rythmik because I have a DS1200 in the kitchen for music and I like it; plus I’ve had outstanding service from Brian at Rythmik. Respect Mark Seaton too based on what I have read about him and his company. Have read a ton and saw mention of many other subs such as JTR Cap S1/S2, HSU, etc. but keep coming back to the 3 I listed.
  • Primary use will be theater (80%) with some music (20%)
  • I want 15-20 Hz extension with authority but don’t plan to play near reference levels; crossed with mains at 70-80 Hz. Want as close to flat response as possible and will EQ with MiniDSP.
  • I have always been a sealed sub guy since 20+ years ago when I was installing car stereos. I would go for the single Boston Pro 10” while my friends would go for a pair of some random 15”.
  • Roughly a $2500 budget
  • I have a MiniDSP 10x10 HD so I will be able to EQ the sub(s). Will use REW with MiniDSP UMIK-1 for room EQing...once I learn it better.
  • I am a hobbyist woodworker so building a sub box is no issue
  • I am an engineer at heart so a completed DIY sub would likely be closer to 150lbs than 100lbs (Okay, I’m trying to come up with a polite way of saying I go overboard).
  • I have a fairly small room (~1800 cu ft - 14 ft x 16 ft x 8 ft) with a 5.1 setup and wood floors (will also focus on room treatments) but it has an 11 ft opening in the back to the kitchen (12 ft x 18 ft).
  • Room is on first floor with basement family room below and master bedroom above
  • TV is currently on a TV stand but I will eventually build a built-in wall unit/entertainment center on that wall. Could fit one or more subs in wall unit.
  • Because of the door in the back left of the living room, I'm pretty much limited to subs in 3 corners of the room, so a 4th 15" of whatever type would have to be in the front entertainment center wall unit.
  • If it really mattered, I could see myself stretching for a 4th Rythmik DS1510, less likely for a second LMS 5400, but a second Submersive would definitely be a ways down the road.

Placement options:
  • Single Seaton Submersive HP
    • Built in bottom of future wall unit
    • As end table – Would likely put granite or concrete on top (poured my own concrete kitchen countertops)
  • Single Seaton Submersive F2
    • Built into bottom of future wall unit either centered or to one side of wall unit
  • Single DIY TC Sounds LMS 5400 (2,000-2,500 W RMS) in 4cuft sealed
    • Build one into wall unit or use as an end table
  • 3 Rythmik DIY F15HP (DS1510 + 600W)

Thanks very much if you read all of even some of that. Would appreciate any recommendations or suggestions. I guess the main questions I have starts with the Rythmiks, would 3 or even 4 give me similar impact in the upper teens as a single Submersive or LMS 5400? If the answer to that is a solid yes, then my placement is largely addressed as they will be down firing end tables. If the answer is no or maybe then I will likely shift focus to choosing between a Submersive HP/F2 and the LMS 5400 with placement playing a role in that decision.

David
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post #2 of 10 Old 07-12-2013, 10:03 PM - Thread Starter
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And here is a picture of the living room:

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post #3 of 10 Old 07-12-2013, 10:24 PM
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I'm impressed with your approach as well as selections. Any one/two/three/four biggrin.gif of those would make for a great sub. I too am a sealed fan, but with the exception of the LMS, they certainly eat up a lot of real estate when going multiple. That being said; based on your space, a DO (or DS) SI/Dayton build would fit into your plans nicely, and easily reach 20hz with authority (seeing as you mention not playing anywhere near reference levels). You could also get this done for well under your budget (figuring about 1300 for a pair, lumber, and CV5000 or less with an EP4000).

Of course there are many ways to skin a cat, and not matter which one you pick, you'll be very happy.

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post #4 of 10 Old 07-12-2013, 11:00 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks bass addict. Frankly, I don't know what reference level is or what 10Hz feels like as I haven't been to one of the Sub Get ToGethers. My kids just turned 10 and my system does movies well but I know the Focal sub is missing so much below 30 (dad gave it to me as he bought it when a stereo store went out of business). Between knowing/hearing my current system is missing so much and being busy with work and other DIY projects (remodeling kitchen), I frankly don't watch movies much. However, if I had a sub(s) that did movies well, I'm sure we would watch a lot more movies as a family and make it a friend affair too as we'd have the best movie sound system around (uh, maybe).

So I say I don't think I'd play at reference levels and would be pleased with upper teens, that is somewhat of a guess considering we have a small room and might have some friends and their kids over to watch movies. Not sure if they'd like/appreciate reference or not. Then again, as an engineer and DIYer with nice tools, I guess I'd rather get the right equipment up front, which would be a system capable of playing reference at low teens even if it is rarely used.

And I've seen Daytons recommended all over but there are definitely many drivers out there so when I read about the LMS 5400 and so many say it is one of the best drivers available, it makes it easy to select. And even better when I read about the GTGs and it is easy to find discussion about the LMS 5400...other drivers it is harder to find feedback on.

David
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post #5 of 10 Old 07-12-2013, 11:11 PM
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Well the LMS is a special beast. I loved mine but couldn't justify picking up more this last go around with the reviews the SI/Daytons were getting. FR is a term I feel is overlooked quite a bit. Everyone talks about output and quality, but you don't hear about integration as much. If you have room for 3 subs; I personally would lean toward 3 separate sealed boxes loaded with the SI's or Dayton's. That would give you quite a visceral impact, while allowing you the most flexibility in tailoring the FR. I think a trio of these would be splitting hairs compared to an LMS as well, IMO.

Now we have some LMS fanatics on here, and I'm sure they will voice their opinion as well. I just think from a cost to performance standpoint; you will be hard pressed to outperform the multiple sealed approach, factoring everything into the equation. smile.gif

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post #6 of 10 Old 07-12-2013, 11:51 PM
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^^ i agree.

if you have the space, build yourself dual front facing 460ho's in 6-8 cubic feet per enclosure
and power with a cv5000 amp for ~1250 watts per driver.

such a system will have about 6db more sensitivity than a single lms ultra, have more max spl
everywhere and with 4 drivers and 2 cabs, the frequency response will be smoother.

with eq, such a system would exceed 2 submersives.

equalization to bring up the lower end would be required.

usable xmax on the dayton is about 20mm, measured (see data-bass.com).

member mastermaybe built something like this. quite nice.


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post #7 of 10 Old 07-13-2013, 12:32 AM - Thread Starter
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Well I could swing 2 LMS drivers but not 3, at least not at this time, mainly because I'm also thinking of amplification. I could go cheaper on amps but would rather buy nicer and not have to upgrade later...SpeakerPower was one I was considering although Crown and QSC would be heavily considered. And can you imagine 3 LMS 5400s in an 1800 cu ft room even if it is open in the back? There would either be pain or loafing woofers or both. smile.gif And then I'd be on the merry go round...you know, the one where you realize the low frequencies are so powerful your mains can't keep up and need to be upgraded. smile.gif

So what drivers would you recommend I look at in the 15-18" range that would fit in 3-4 cu ft that wouldn't give up much to the so called best 18" driver made? I'd especially be interested in any that give me the flexibility in building a down firing box, which the Rythmiks 15" would allow but I read on the Parts Express site that the LMS 5400 is not a good candidate for down firing applications.

So on a tangent (but related to mains upgrade comment above) at 3am in the morning, and one I'm not sure I want to share since the speakers were so cheap...but since we're all friends here. smile.gif As part of the kitchen remodel, I wanted to get some really nice ceiling speakers. I actually bought some Definitive UIW RCS II (http://definitivetechnology.com/products/uiw-rcs-ii) but had to sell them since I was going to put them up so they were aiming towards where most guests would be on the other side of the kitchen island where there would be a bunch of seats along the edge of the island. They sounded decent but I wasn't enamored with them but the real problem was the louder bass/noise going directly down, which is where my wife would usually be in the kitchen; this was of course a no-go since she wouldn't be able to hear anyone at even moderate levels. I listened to some B&W, Speakercraft, etc at some local stores but wasn't able to listen to the good stuff. I wanted to listen to Triads, which are supposed to be high quality in-ceiling/wall speakers but couldn't make that happen. I bought some speakers off of eBay thinking I could resale them if I didn't like them, Emotiva UAC 8.2, NHT IW-3, NHT IC-4, and maybe one other set. When my dad found out, he gave me a set of in wall Focal Chorus IW 706 V that he never used. As an aside, I also tried several subs such as Sunfire HRS-10, Boston Acoustics Sub10F(passive, in-floor/ceiling) (only $150 shipped including cabinet), Atlantic Technology IWTS-28, before deciding on the Rythmik DS1200. After listening to all of the ceiling speakers, I decided the NHT IC-4 (http://www.nhthifi.com/iC4-ARC-In-Ceiling-Speaker?sc=12&category=1212) were the best for the ceiling in the kitchen. The link is to the new model coming out soon but has similar construction although I am told by NHT that the new ones are a little bigger, faster, better or at least structurally more solid. smile.gif The cool thing about the IC-4 for distributed use especially is the 3-offset tweeter design that has 3 tweeters in one with each facing 120 degrees apart (go to the link if you're interested as the picture is better than I can describe it). Even better, since the NHT IC-4 had been discontinued, I was able to get pairs for around $300 and sometimes less. I ended up buying quite a few pairs after I decided I liked them so much that I was going to build boxes for them and replace my Focal Sib XL system for theater duty. I like the NHT IC-4 that much that it will now be my home theater fronts, center, and rears along with kitchen ceiling speakers. I plan to build some boxes that will go up near the ceilings (bulk of the box will actually extend into the ceiling joists to keep lowest in room profile and will be drywalled and trimmed to blend in seamlessly) and aim down toward the primary listening position. I hope they sound as good in home theater placement as they do in a box on the counter (listening on & off-axis) or it will have been a lot of wasted box-building effort.

Thanks again bass addict.
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post #8 of 10 Old 07-13-2013, 12:41 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks LTD02. That is a nice setup and something I could definitely accommodate. But if I were to build enclosures with a pair of subs as in the picture, I would be forced (primarily aesthetics) to build them into the front entertainment center wall unit. This isn't a problem but I wouldn't be able to move them around the room to find the best placement. I could play around with their placement at the front wall before I finished the built-in entertainment center wall unit. My question would then be if you think the pair of dual subs at the front would have any issues interacting with the room vs 3 individual subs distributed as end tables?
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post #9 of 10 Old 07-13-2013, 09:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dgage View Post

My question would then be if you think the pair of dual subs at the front would have any issues interacting with the room vs 3 individual subs distributed as end tables?

Tough to say as each room is different. From personal experience, I would always recommend multiple subs at multiple locations as opposed to the opposite. I have two separate cabs with a trio of 18's in each one behind my screen wall, and I'm looking at adding 2 more at the back of the room to help smooth out a still uneven FR.

The nice thing with the sealed design is; you already have the DSP to add a shelf filter and bring up the bottom end. The Dayton/SI route would also require a lot less power than the LMS. A pair of EP2500's would set you back less than 700 bucks and power them nicely. Seeing as you'd have a spare channel left, you could also do a single DO at the front of the room, with 2 other single cabs used as end tables. smile.gif

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post #10 of 10 Old 07-13-2013, 11:59 AM
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you may be able to get a nice frequency response
by mounting them half way up the wall too
since that reduces a lot of modes in the vertical plane.

cowan has a longish room kind of like yours
and got a good result (among the best bass response
that i've seen without punishing levels of eq).

http://www.cowanaudio.com/

"unity, the finale" on the left side will take you
to his final build where you can see what he did
and how it turned out for him.

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