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AVS › AVS Forum › Audio › Subwoofers, Bass, and Transducers › Subwoofer frequency response vs. perceived SPL
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Subwoofer frequency response vs. perceived SPL

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
Does a smooth, flat response offer a perceived increase in overall SPL?

For example, if a response curve has +5dB peaks at 30Hz and 50Hz, and -5dB dips at 40Hz and 60Hz (10dB difference between 30/50 and 40/60), will the overall SPL of program material (music in this case) seem to be louder once the response is smoothed?

The question pertains only to perception of real-world program material and overall SPL. I don't think most people can tell when there's a -10dB null at certain frequencies when music is playing. But if those nulls suddenly disappeared, would someone perceive the music as louder, or just more full-sounding?
post #2 of 5
I think it wouldn't be perceived as louder, but definitely sounding better and richer.
post #3 of 5
To my untrained ears smoothing out the peaks and dips actually make the bass sound quieter, however MUCH better. With the peak and dip it would emphasize particular notes, making them boomy, extra noticeable, and shake the room some (when it shouldnt)

With my old setup my wife would complain that the sub sounded like garbage and would turn it off, well after some measurements I find out I have a room mode at 40hz, and the old sub was port tuned for 39hz. The sub was very quiet and then very loud and back to very quiet. The new sub is properly room corrected and just sounds nice. The bass totally blends into the rest of the sound, nothing jumps out to distract you, I actually run the bass a fair bit louder now and it doesnt "seem" as noticeable, if that even makes sense. (and no more complaints)
post #4 of 5
Thread Starter 
That's what I was thinking, I just wasn't sure. This is relevant to my "not enough bass" thread, but I didn't want it to get lost there because it may be relevant to others as well.
post #5 of 5
I think a smooth flat response actually gives a much less perception of loudness and spl. Turn the gain up a bit, you start noticing the material you weren't getting before, and then it usually becomes preferred.
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