Plan was to pull out REW and get the subs as level matched as possible from the start. Unfortunately my Mobile Pre USB external sound card seems to have fried somehow. Was using it 2 days ago and noticed something was off but thought it was just one of those weird REW things. But clearly there was an issue as the same odd sound was coming from the card when we got to Jims.
Jim was a great host and I enjoyed listening to his dual VTF-15hs, listening in his room it was quite clear he made a great decision going with dual large ported subs and with 1 placed nearfield it provided some great tactile feel.
The PB13 and FW subs while performing respectively just couldn't fill much pressure in that 4500cube room.
Unfortunately trying to level match/calibrate the several subs using the SMS-1 proved next to impossible and at one point I noticed the VTF (we were using one at that point) seem to be providing a much more visceral feel that the levels were clearly off . Sure enough just using the recieverr test tone showed that the VTF was some 5db hot compared to the other two. So we quickly increased the gains on the other two subs.
Overall I thought the VTF's were great subs for the $999 (in veneer) that they are offered for. The finish in particular looked spectactular (I think Jim mentioned it was Rosenut which was interesting as the Rosenut of my old PB13 was much redder/lighter). The paper/foam woofer just has a "mean" look to it with the size of the surround, and the amp was perfectly flush with the cabinet. We were all wondering how the sub weighed 123lbs given it felt very hollow to the old "knuckle tap" compared to the PB13 and the FW sub.
The Pulse seen in particular I was interested in given it is centered around 17 to 20hz. The dual and even single VTF's held up well, though as Bill mentioned above, what I'm typically used to is more "pressurized feel" and very little "sound' with that scene (and the plane crash scene in Flight of the Phoenix, and some parts of the WOTW pods emering scene for instance). The VTF's and FW seemed to be "louder" during those scense while the PB13 didn't seem to push out as much sound (I recall actually staring at the woofer at one point to see if it was moving - yes, it was, just very little sound coming from it), and my guess is the room size was so large the PB13 stood no chance of pressurizing the room hence why I wasn't feeling anything. The dual VTF's with one placed nearfield definitely provided a better experience in his room as there was more feel coming from behind us.
One thing that was interesting was that we played the painful (in the sense that it is ear splittingly high) Roy Orbinson Pretty Woman DTS 5.1 track. The drum beats had seeminly more feel/impact with the single VTF15 and even the FW sub than the PB13. Nice kick to the chest sort of feel.
Overall, the sub that really impressed me was the FW12.X sub with the AV12X driver and 500 watt bash amp. Simply because it was much smaller than the other 2 subs, yet in that size room I couldn't say I was missing anything compared to the other 2 subs, and I actually found it did exceedingly well with that so called "mid-bass" slam and to me had a great sound to it. Now, this could be some bias here as my subs are AV15H drivers in a dual opposed setup. So I could just be more accustomed to their sonic signature (haven't really used the PB13 in a year). The sub was also finished spectacularly, though I wish Bill had stuck to a wood stain on that walnut veneer vs black (sorry Bill - personal preference!
Again, while it was great to meet Jim and Bill and pound out some movie scense, with REW not working it really put me in a crappy mood as I knew trying to level match them and compare frequency reponses would have been impossible. We also didn't bother at that point putting the subs into the same position (had the FW on top of the PB13 sub in one corner with the VTF in the other corner). Didn't want to go through the hassle of doing that knowing that without REW it would have been moot anyhow.
Hopefully when I get another soundcard we can give it a go once more!