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AVS › AVS Forum › Audio › Subwoofers, Bass, and Transducers › After 4 years, realization is settling in...I'm subwoofer deficient. Advice?
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After 4 years, realization is settling in...I'm subwoofer deficient. Advice?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
First, a little background. 4+ years ago I built a small dedicated home theater (16x16) off the back of my garage. Living near Portland, and looking for good value, I went with an Aperion Audio set-up that I picked up form their offices (two Intimus 5Ts R/L, 5C Center, 5DBs surrounds, 4Bs rears, Bravus 10D sub). I've been really happy with the speakers, but I always thought something was wrong with the sub. Theater is 50% movies, 50% console gaming...virtually no music. The sub really lacked that deep powerful bass. I always heard distorted sound at those low rumbling levels rather than deep bass.

About a year into this hobby, I upgraded my Onkyo receiver to a Denon. I noticed an improvement, but something still seemed wrong. Did some acoustic treatments in the room. Helped...still something wrong.

Finally in 2011 I brought the Bravus 10D into Aperion and they ran tests. They reported back to me that "they match very closely in terms of their frequency response in terms of dB vs. the frequency that they are producing" (mine versus a test model). I took it home and went back to tweaking and adjusting settings.

Fast forward to now and we moved to a new home in a new state. I have a larger theater now (21x21) and while I calibrated the theater well, the sub is driving me nuts. I went to YouTube and played the following frequency sweep:

At "normal" volumes it sounds good to about 50hz but then becomes very distorted. If I turn the volume down it gets to about 40hz but anything below that sounds horrible (while the frequency drops, it gets a high pitched squeal). I played with the sub volume and the receiver volume...can't get anything below 40hz to sound good.

I'm heading to Portland this Monday and was going to bring the sub to have them test it again, but after running this sweep and reading a bit online I'm realizing that perhaps I've pushed this little sub way beyond its intended limits. Being HT and gaming dedicated, I want that deep rich bass. And unless there is a slim chance that my sub is actually defective, I'm realizing the 10D won't get me there. Soooooo...2 questions:

- I'm open to suggestions for a good quality sub for dedicated HT and gaming...in a dedicated room that is 21x21. Happy with my other Aperions I was looking at the 12D, but wonder if maybe I should broaden my search.
- I wired the new theater for dual-subs but haven't done much research on them. For a room this size, would I hear a noticeable difference having duals rather than just one really good high-quality sub?

Side note: I'm looking at the 10D online now and it looks like it has different specs than my 10D from 4 years ago. Mine is 300W, the current one is 500W. Current frequency response is (- 3dB) 27Hz - 180Hz (- 6dB) 25Hz - 200Hz while my version is (- 3dB) 30Hz - 180Hz (- 6dB) 26Hz - 180Hz

Appreciate any thoughts. Thanks all.
post #2 of 10
post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 
Ideally $2,500 or less...but could go to $3K.
post #4 of 10
Get a couple of 18 inch subs and be done with wondering if you have the room. I tried 10,12, 15 inch sub from Epik , SVS, Klipsch and some other brands and now feel content with some 18 in subs. They really are not much larger than a lot of 15 inch subs.
post #5 of 10
Originally Posted by IQ22 View Post

Ideally $2,500 or less...but could go to $3K.

I would suggest dual FV15HP's from Rythmik, unless you were somewhat handy with the tools and wanted to dual some subs. With your budget you could build some amazing subs.
post #6 of 10
If it were my $2500, I'd order a SubMersive HP+:

SubMersive's usually take Best of Show honours in listening tests / GTG's:

If you can swing the $250 upcharge, the SubMersive F2 looks nicer.
post #7 of 10
Assuming an 8' ceiling, your room is 3,528 cu.ft.

For $2,500 or less:
- dual SVS PB-2000
- dual PSA XV15 or XS30
- dual HSU VTF-15H (a.k.a., VTF-15H DualDrive)

For just over $2,600: dual SVS PB12-Plus.

For closer to $3,000: dual Rythmik FV15HP.
post #8 of 10

As suggested, I believe the dual Rythmiks would be the best option for under $3k.  The output of this setup should blow you away, as these subs are absolute output monsters for the price.  I don't know for sure how they would compare to a single $2500 sub, perhaps someone with experience could chime in about a single submersive.  My guess would be the dual Rythmiks would be very hard to beat.


I am willing to bet a single Rythmik would blow you away compared to what you have had.


However, with this big of an expenditure I do recommend looking into the seaton. I simply do not know enough about them to make and educated recommendation compared to the Rythmik. Perhaps the PSA Triax would also be a similar single sub option at $3k.

post #9 of 10
To add to eljay's list, 2 PSA XV30f's come in at $2,638.10

Also IQ22 just so you know what your up against. A perfectly square room is the worst room for bass peaks and nulls. You will definitely want to make sure your seating is about 2/3 the distance from front wall to rear wall to ensure that your not sitting in a null.
post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thank you all for the responses! I love this forum and the community it fosters.

I understand the challenges of the square room...unfortunately I was stuck with the dimensions! I've done some work with GIK Acoustics to tame it and think we're in an OK place. And yes, my main row of seating is about 2/3 of the way back (with a second, less used, row on a riser behind it).

Doing some research last night I was looking at the dual PB12-Plusses and the Rythmiks. I'll look at some of the other suggestions as well.

I'm pretty convinced that if I do this, I should just go duals regardless of model.

Thanks all!
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