Originally posted by Huskerfan
MississippiMan, Are you employed by a theater company or what?!!! Man that is some set up!
Nope. I've been doing business as "Invisible Stereo" since 1978. I installed my first "Home Theater" on Marco Island, FL in 1979.
For some years before true "Bass" Tactiles came along, I was using a Full range Audio Transducer w/Sub Woofer Crossovers as a Bass Supplement. Trouble was, it took 4 of 'em to equal 1 true Tactile. But they were capable of "Musical Quality" bass, so I also use them a true Bass Drivers, part of 2 & 3 way set-up.
As in all things "Good", "More" is better. I learned early on that to get even distribution of effect, the use of Multiple Drivers would activate a large area far more efficiently that any "few" would, having to be turned up excessively high. When I design a Tactile LFE effect, I try to make it have "Thrill Ride" potential. That means it better not "Bottom Out" when the Cannon Fire in Master & Commander, or the Pod Race in SW deliver a sub-60 Hz signal.
Rattle, crackel, Buzz.
Tactiles have the unfortunate ability to take even slightly distorted Bass and make it sound like the World is coming apart at the seams. Since all of my efforts come up for review by my Client's friends and family everyday, I take NO chances. If they want a Tactile option, (...and they ALWAYS do if they hear/feel a good demo!) then they need must buy into the amount necessary to effect a truly awesome result. It's not all that expensive these days anyway.
I've also got about a gazillion photo examples of 'smallish' Bonus Room Theaters that have 8 Auras, (...or RBHs before they faded away...) in the Floor, and have 1 or 2 8" In-Wall Subs to round out the LFE. I prefer to effectively mix the two together to provide a seamless transition of effect.
For instance, when the Grapeshot rakes the Surprise in the "Under Attack" scene in M&C, the sensation should be a "wash" of resonance through the room that matches the transition of the sound as it travels from Front Left to Rear Right. Done right, and you ARE there.
I can easily remember back to 1994 when I first debuted The Fugitive at my local Home Show. When train hit the ditch, you could actually see people jump back, hands clutch throats, and eyeballs pop. Jurassic Park was one better, 'cause when the Glass of water showed the vibration waves, the room told you that the Biggun' was a comin'.
It took the mainstream A/V world quite a while to catch on to the fact than "Normals" would actually enjoy such an experience. It didn't help much that the only effort made at that time by a MFG to really produce something of quality came from those madmen at Clark Synthesis. Too expensive by far, and with way too much localized Tactile force, they choose to market to the "Hi-Fi" level market. All just to gain credibility, and to justify a higher price. Sound Advance made the same decision when putting out their SA-10. Both products have sold 'well' but have failed to register as 'doable' for the masses.
(In fact, I and my Dealers eat their respective lunches on a regular basis.)
Me? I just did what I knew what I knew would work well, and at a price a first time Home Builder could justify, especially if I caught them still remembering how they squeezed the blood from the hand of their spouse during a Demo. And, I have yet to ever install a true Tactile in a Chair or Couch. I tried an Aura once, mounted to a pre-adapted Theater Chair, and it essentially sucked; To much localized force. Very unnatural effect.
Wheres the Immodium?
IMO, to get a couch to do what needs to be done, the structure would have to be greatly re-inforced. This isn't possible, or advisable if your efforts to bring Home Theater into a Family Room involves a major Sectional sofa, or Rocker Recliners. And oh so many of my Dealers and my own projects are/were exactly that. In fact, that's what we are famous for, turning normal rooms into Home Theaters at the touch of the remote.
But as you already know, not always is there a decent Sub Floor available, what with Slab Construction as popular as it is. And the few souls with HTs in mind up North and East seem focused on basement locations for HTs. More concrete
Early on, Platforms seemed "Too Campy' for those who previously hadn't even considered Surround Sound.
So I avidly pursued the ideal applications. Bonus Rooms over Garages.
Always a Sub Floor. The Dinosaur can stomp away without the sound waking Junior. (...or Mom.)
I observed that some are mounting the Auras' on structural members instead of Flat Boards. This obviously comes from Clark's early-on advice that their product be mounted on a Bridge of 2'x 4' that spanned two Floor joists. Sort of the old, "Shake a Tin sheet" kinda approach.
It was always a poor route to take, and you just know I told them so. I could do that, because the Engineer and Owner used the Rolen Star Audio Transducer as their core element in the original design. But, in the stretch to increase power handling, they dove into the middle of their unit, improved the Voice Coil, upped the quality of the Magnet Structure, and enhanced the resonance via a larger Plastic enclosure. The result was an incredibly powerful device, capable of excellent Full range production, but far too energetic at the epicenter (...as in earthquake...) to ever use in a wall or ceiling. So they concentrated in selling it as a pure Bass tactile to most everyone.
I ignored them completely, and they sort of faded to insignificance.
'Cept, you'll now notice they started producing 2 other examples, each with less power than the previous, and priced more sanely. But still, you can get about 6 Auras for one "cheapie" Clark, and cover far more area evenly. So they remain "ignored".
But cha all know most of this so I'm probably preachin' to da choir.
I stand ready to advise and assist any "Tactile Troll" in how to get the mosty bang for their buck out of their Tactile set-up. I'm doing likewise over in DIY screens, so why not overwork myself some more?
Why not, indeed.