I've been to a lot of sub meets
and witnessed first hand most of the best subs mentioned on this forum. I don't give two toots about anything below about 15hz. I don't hear anything below about 16 or 17hz. What's below that just doesn't matter in my opinion. I'd take a pair of subs that will play to well above reference at 15 or 20hz any day over a single sub that digs down to signal chain rollofff to reference. That's my experienced personal preference. A pair of ported captivators suit me just fine. We did a shootout between all these subs in 2012, blind, at my house as linked in my sig, and nobody out of nine blind voting enthusiasts could even tell the difference between ported, sealed, or horn when the volumes were level matched and kept within capability of the subs and amps. --- At least when comparing subs in the same quality classes. All three alignments averaged out between a 3% score gap based on nine total votes. I mostly keep my mouth shut on the issue because people like what they like, and many like to chase the last 1 percent.
As to the fellow getting ready to order from Jeff and wanting to know how to spend $10K.
Two subs are pretty vital in my experience and opinion -- at least in most rooms. It disallows localization of the sound. If the choice is two subs that play to 17.5hz (ported caps) or 1 sub that plays deeper (s2) for the same money - I would certainty advise two subs. Now if you have the budget to get two S2's or two Orbit Shifters - then go for it. But with limited funds - you'll be far happier with two subs playing to 15 or 20hz, than a single sub which won't even reproduce those lowest of frequencies if playing solo with enough authority to make it worth your while in all but the very smallest of rooms. Heck I've still yet to hear what all the fuss is about with the black hawk down clip and such. I've now heard it on eight 18" subs, four 18" subs in a different room, eight 15" subs in a different room, two orbit shifters in a different room, two S2's in a different room. etc etc. etc - and I've never even felt/experienced the magic that people talk about. The subs sound great where they should, but you have to pretty much be in a miniscule room or have a ridiculous quantity of drivers/subs to feel pressure waves at 5-7hz, and frankly - I don't think I've experienced it yet. I suppose popalock's room might make it happen. Contrast that with the fact that I'll guarantee, by virtue of betting one of my own paychecks that I could tell you if there were A) two subs or B) one sub playing in 9 out of 10 home theater rooms, and 10 out of 10 if I'm allowed to sit in a couple different seats to compare.
So --- anyway - - I'd recommend that fellow to order five or seven 228HT, and a couple of passive ported captivators and mate them up to a cerwin vega cv-5000 amp for my 10G. He'll have one of the best movie systems money can buy. That's a complete setup for home theater around the 10K point! For movie use the 228HT and the 212HT are pretty much on par - I'm not sure I could tell the difference. The 212HT is superior for music, it has a bigger soundstage sound. The 228HT is more focused. For 5.1 or 7.1 - focused is not a bad thing. I've got quite a bit of experience with both 212HT and 228HT - both are excellent speakers.
If he just wants front L/C/R and subs -- then three 212HT and a couple of passive ported captivators fits the 10G bill too. I'd not recommend a single sub option unless he plans to buy a mate later.Edited by Archaea - 7/13/13 at 11:31pm