Originally Posted by mthomas47
This has been an interesting discussion of the differences between sealed subs and ported subs. Personally, I think that if you are enjoying the deeper more compressive sense of the sealed subs, to the more overt feel of the ported subs, then you are ahead of the game.
But, in the interests of muddying the waters, it occurs to me that it doesn't necessarily have to be an either/or in your case. Since you still have V18's and have toyed with the idea of comparing them again, why don't you leave your S3601's where you have them and try one of the V18's nearfield? Normally, it isn't a good idea to mix ported and sealed subs, but nearfield subs (within 3' of a listening position) don't engage room modes in the same way that subs further away do.
If you are able to achieve a reasonable sounding integration among the subs, you might be able to use the S3601's for most of your music listening and just engage the nearfield V18 when you really want the additional tactile impact that a ported sub provides. Just a thought.
Yes I agree, has been an interesting discussion and agree with a lot of what has been said. I've ran both, ported by itself, sealed by itself and mixed. I liked each on there own but do think there are some differences that I've experienced as well.
I agree that ported can be a bit more violent/explosive and has more TR (at least around tune) than the sealed, while not being quite as smooth maybe. Also I think it's true about the sealed creating a bit more pressure (not just room pressure where you feel it on your ears, but internally as well).
I'm all sealed now (I plugged my ports on my one ported DIY for the time being) to have all sealed on my 18's. To help make up the difference in that feeling of more TR and violence that ported can have, getting the sealed subs closer to you helps make up the difference (at least it did for me getting the drivers real close). It definitely helped to level the playing field when it comes to TR and that aggressive factor that ported has.
Now what about having the drivers on ported boxes real close to you (I'm talking VNF here where the driver is almost touching the back of your seat)? From subwoofers (not talking TT's or MA's here), this is probably about as much violence and TR as you can get IMO, more so than the sealed sub positioned the same way. But there are trade offs, bigger enclosures on ported if you want deep extension to get TR that you can really feel down around 10hz or so, where as sealed have the extension in a smaller box (but will probably require some or a lot Low Shelf boost sometimes to pick the bottom end up) and also possibly a little distracting having ported that close (kid kicking that back of your chair kind of thing comes to mind) but can be lessened by moving the sub a little further a way, and then the ported maybe not quite as smooth feeling as the sealed (if you like that), etc. This is VNF, so didn't really mean to get into that again, but I think if I couldn't run sealed subs very close to me, I'd go with ported, at least for movies, because I like the aggressive effect that ported can give.
- you might try running both like Mike was saying. If you can get them integrated (it might take some work) it might work out great for you, giving you the best of both worlds.