Which subwoofer(s) up to 1600$ ? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 30 Old 07-20-2016, 02:01 AM - Thread Starter
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Which subwoofer(s) up to 1600$ ?

Hey there!

I am looking for a new subwoofer solution for my living room. I could either use two smaller downfire subwoofers (approximately up to the size of a Martin Logan Dynamo 1000) or one big subwoofer. I would like to spend up to 1600 $ (to buy used subwoofers is also an option). The living room has a size of approximately 110 cubic meter (approximately 3885 cubic feet). I currently own a SVS SB12-NSD but I am missing a bit of punch. Punch - or let's say a kick in the gut (for example when someone shoots a shotgun - is what I am looking for. Punch is my priority. Which subwoofer(s) would you recommend so that I get a bit more punch?

Thank you very much in advance.

Best regards,
Chris
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post #2 of 30 Old 07-20-2016, 03:19 AM
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You may pay a semi professional boxer to punch you each time there is a shot gun on film. Wouldn't like to be there if you are watching Peral Harbor
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post #3 of 30 Old 07-20-2016, 03:30 AM
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I'd recommend 2 or 3 Rythmik LV12R. I'm not super well experienced in this space, just doing what most do and recommending what I have and feel comfortable suggesting (well I have 1 and I love it but 2-3 would be awesome). Hopefully someone who has a lot of experience with multiple subs at different price ranges will chime in but the brands I've seen recommended around here (and for good reason) are Rythmik, SVS, Hsu and some others. Is your 3885 cubic feet sealed or open to other rooms?

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post #4 of 30 Old 07-20-2016, 03:30 AM
 
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I have a Psa xv15 subwoofer. Actually I have 2 but only getting rid of one at the monent that would Put that Dynamo 1000 to shame. Trust me I am a MARTIN LOGAN FAN but when it comes to subs I learned the hard way with them.

As you see my Esl are covered and a martin Logan theater center!!
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post #5 of 30 Old 07-20-2016, 08:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rollomat View Post
Hey there!

I am looking for a new subwoofer solution for my living room. I could either use two smaller downfire subwoofers (approximately up to the size of a Martin Logan Dynamo 1000) or one big subwoofer. I would like to spend up to 1600 $ (to buy used subwoofers is also an option). The living room has a size of approximately 110 cubic meter (approximately 3885 cubic feet). I currently own a SVS SB12-NSD but I am missing a bit of punch. Punch - or let's say a kick in the gut (for example when someone shoots a shotgun - is what I am looking for. Punch is my priority. Which subwoofer(s) would you recommend so that I get a bit more punch?

Thank you very much in advance.

Best regards,
Chris
If it's punch you're looking for, how about just adding a MBM to your existing sub?

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/91-aud...ter-101-a.html
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post #6 of 30 Old 07-20-2016, 09:55 AM
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For that amount you could get a JTR sub as well.
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post #7 of 30 Old 07-20-2016, 10:13 AM
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get the best/largest subwoofer you can fit in your space. I like ported 15's. if you go with 2 less expensive models, maybe try out diy. since you have svs already, maybe adding a second or trading up is best bet. isnt the dynamo a tiny sub?

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post #8 of 30 Old 07-20-2016, 10:52 AM
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If its punch you want and you want to feel the punch. Then you need NEARFIELD SUBS or an MBM(mid bass module). Dont know the layout of your living room but if your able to put 1 sub on each side of your couch or behind your couch then that will do it. Haveing subs farfield will not give you the "punch" your looking for. They need to be up close and personal. I have all DIY subs in my room. 2-infinitys 1262w's up front and then for "punch" i have 2-infinity 1262w's right behind the couch. Ill add 3 more under the couch as ive built a riser and have the space. And add 1 more behind the couch. So 3 under the couch (sealed enclosure) and 3 behind the couch (ported).

I agree with torii. Get the biggest you can get up front. 2-15"s daytons HO's in a microcube and whatever you can fit near you. 1600.00 is actually a pretty good budget

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post #9 of 30 Old 07-20-2016, 10:59 AM
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This is the kind of punch i get at my MLP(main listening position. This is TRON -air glide scene. Its nothing compared to some of the bigger systems some guys have but it sure shook the couch. LONDON HAS FALLEN was pretty brutal also.
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post #10 of 30 Old 07-20-2016, 11:37 AM
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JTR 118HT,

It is ported to 17Hz and uses an 18" PA type speaker with 19mm of Xmax and 700 watts of SpeakerPower amplification for $1,300. Considering it does 97dB at one watt/one meter--I'd say it has a ton of PUNCH. Maybe you can use your existing sub nearfield for that extra touch of entertainment.

I'm waiting for data-bass.com to test the thing, should be quite interesting to get very high SPL without blowing breakers.
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post #11 of 30 Old 07-20-2016, 12:02 PM
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PSA S3000i, Rythmik F25 or Cap 118HT should have loads of mid bass slam.
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post #12 of 30 Old 07-20-2016, 12:21 PM
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If you're looking for punch you should look for something sealed as those types of subwoofers tend to have a tighter response. An interesting option (not sealed though) could be a JTR Growler, but you'd need external amplification. Something like the QSC RMX2450 should do the trick in bridged mono mode.
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post #13 of 30 Old 07-20-2016, 01:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by basshead81 View Post
PSA S3000i, Rythmik F25 or Cap 118HT should have loads of mid bass slam.
These will likely be some of the best options in your price range for a single sub. If you have a little bit of wiggle room in the budget, you could also look at the Cap 1400 which has been reduced in price to $1899 plus shipping. Another option to consider would be the Rythmik FV15HP which has also been reduced in price to $1200 plus shipping.

If you can accommodate the size, you are also close in price range to get very good dual subs such as Hsu's VTF3.5 or VTF15.2
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post #14 of 30 Old 07-20-2016, 01:09 PM
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16 of these would be interesting

http://www.accessories4less.com/make...r-black/1.html

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post #15 of 30 Old 07-21-2016, 03:12 AM - Thread Starter
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Hey guys,

thank you very much for your replies.

@ citsur86
Thank you for your tip. But I doubt that one will be enough for such a big room and I can’t stand two of these size unfortunately.

@ Holiday 121
The PSA15S would be a nice option that I looked at quite a few times already. Unfortunately there is no dealer in Europe who offers this sub. I live in Germany and decided to ask this question here because in Germany it’s all about SVS.

If I mid bass module does the trick, I am open for that. But I have got a few questions as I am a newbie.
1. Do I need new electronics which split up the subwoofer signal into the signal that goes to the low playing sub and that one that goes to the mid bass module? I doubt that my AVR can do that?!
2. Would I let the mid bass module play from 50 to 200 Hz then and my main speakers will play from 200 Hz onwards.
3. If I have a low playing sub and in addition a mid bass module and these two units do not stand in the same corner of the room, won’t the whole system sound strange / divided?

Do you think an alternative would be to take two 10“ subs as they are supposed to be quicker / tighter? Or is this just prejudice? Of course they won’t dig that deep but that would be a compromise I would have to live with.

One more problem is: I have only seldomly heard a system to be the way I want it to be. I mean I haven’t heard to many systems but: If there is no punch on the audio stream when someone fires a gun the sub can’t reproduce it. Maybe I am expecting just too much?!

Thank you in advance,
Chris
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post #16 of 30 Old 07-21-2016, 03:26 AM
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For $1600 you will not be able to beat this 2 sub combo from HSU: http://www.hsuresearch.com/products/vtf-3mk5HPDual.html

Or step up to the MK2 package which goes 2hz lower: http://www.hsuresearch.com/products/vtf-15hmk2Dual.html

If you need to stay small, you could get two of their sealed subs too but I believe they only go down to 20hz, which many would find sufficient, but I prefer something that can get down a bit lower than that for movies.

There is no single subwoofer under $1600 that could best the above pairs for home theater.

If you just want a single sub, id look at Rhytmik for $1200 or $1569 depending on finish. Check data-bass, this sub is a monster for HT. http://www.rythmikaudio.com/FV15HP.html Again nothing under $1600 that can beat this single sub for home theater.

I'm a big MartinLogan fan, but the 1000w Dynamo is garbage for home theater, you'll be utterly dissapointed with it. You want a ported box for HT, and it's going to need to be a big bigger than the Dynamo.

To get the kind of punch you're looking for you'll want 2 subs to pressurize the room, I'd go with my first link and have each one flank your couch or flank the front speakers. There are more ideal locations, but they usually aren't practical for living rooms.

In my new houses family room I'm installing a power outlet under the sofa, and I'll use wireless transmitter to send the signal. Then I'll have 2 Seaton Submersive subs on each end of the couch which is in the middle of the room.

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post #17 of 30 Old 07-21-2016, 08:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rollomat View Post
If I mid bass module does the trick, I am open for that. But I have got a few questions as I am a newbie.
1. Do I need new electronics which split up the subwoofer signal into the signal that goes to the low playing sub and that one that goes to the mid bass module? I doubt that my AVR can do that?!
2. Would I let the mid bass module play from 50 to 200 Hz then and my main speakers will play from 200 Hz onwards.
3. If I have a low playing sub and in addition a mid bass module and these two units do not stand in the same corner of the room, won’t the whole system sound strange / divided?
All these questions and more are answered in the MBM thread I linked to earlier.

EDIT: Ooops, I thought I had put this link in earlier and I did not. Sorry about that!

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/113-su...-response.html



Quote:
Do you think an alternative would be to take two 10“ subs as they are supposed to be quicker / tighter? Or is this just prejudice? Of course they won’t dig that deep but that would be a compromise I would have to live with.
Smaller subs being "quicker, tighter, faster" is an oft repeated myth. I mean, think about it...if a sub is playing a 20hz tone, and it is playing it accurately, the cone is traveling in and out 20x per second, whether the cone is 10", 12", 15" 18" or larger, it is still traveling in/out 20x per second.
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post #18 of 30 Old 07-21-2016, 08:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rollomat View Post
One more problem is: I have only seldomly heard a system to be the way I want it to be. I mean I haven’t heard to many systems but: If there is no punch on the audio stream when someone fires a gun the sub can’t reproduce it. Maybe I am expecting just too much?!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Defcon View Post
For that amount you could get a JTR sub as well.
Quote:
Originally Posted by 18Hurts View Post
JTR 118HT, It is ported to 17Hz and uses an 18" PA type speaker with 19mm of Xmax and 700 watts of SpeakerPower amplification for $1,300. Considering it does 97dB at one watt/one meter--I'd say it has a ton of PUNCH.
Quote:
Originally Posted by basshead81 View Post
Cap 118HT should have loads of mid bass slam.
Quote:
Originally Posted by bear123 View Post
These will likely be some of the best options in your price range for a single sub. If you have a little bit of wiggle room in the budget, you could also look at the Cap 1400 which has been reduced in price to $1899 plus shipping.

There is a reason that so many people are recommending JTR subs. World class performance, rock solid build, stable vendor and high resale value

" It is a lot of sub for the money. One of the more powerful all around home audio subs that has been tested for Data-Bass to this point, regardless of price. The Cap1400 put forth an impressive set of measurements and offers loads of deep bass headroom."

- Data-Bass.com




Below are all the top contenders in your price range listed in order of price from low to high. Personally, I's go with the JTR Captivator 118 for high SPL and extension. Then rather than chase chest slam by buying multiple subs and near field bass modules, just place the sub as close as possible and add a set of Butkicker or Crowson transducers. Dollar for dollar that will give you more bass sensation coupled with high output.














HSU Research V15H - $999

http://www.hsuresearch.com/products/vtf-15h.html

http://www.data-bass.com/data?page=system&id=100





Rhythmic Audio FVX15 - $999

http://www.rythmikaudio.com/FVX15.html





PSA V1500 - $1,099

http://www.powersoundaudio.com/colle...products/v1500





SVS PB 12 plus - $1,199 (outlet)

http://www.svsound.com/collections/o...no-outlet-1035





JTR Speakers Captivator 118 - $1,299

http://jtrspeakers.com/home-audio/captivator-118ht/



Home Theater Shack Review:

http://www.hometheatershack.com/foru...ht-review.html



HSU VTF-3 Mk5 $1,549 Dual Drive)

http://www.hsuresearch.com/products/vtf-3mk5HP.html





JTR Speakers Captivator 1400 - $1,899

http://jtrspeakers.com/home-audio/captivator/

http://www.data-bass.com/data?page=system&id=117




-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Reaction Audio is missing from this list because of current instability, problems filling orders and paying refunds. However their product (assuming the company can emerge from stormy waters) is definitely a great performance to value contender.


Reaction Audio Echo 15 - $999

http://reactionaudio.com/Echo-15_p_41.html

Reaction Audio Echo 18 - $1, 399

http://reactionaudio.com/Echo-18_p_29.html

Last edited by Peterc613; 07-21-2016 at 09:10 PM.
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post #19 of 30 Old 07-21-2016, 09:00 PM
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Save a little more and get a SVS PB-13.

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post #20 of 30 Old 07-21-2016, 09:51 PM
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PB13 is over priced compared to what is currently available on the ID market. If you can find a nice used one for 1000-1200.00 then that is a good deal. Both the JTR Cap 1400 and PSA V3600i will have double the output through most of the operating bandwidth for the same amount of money retail.
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post #21 of 30 Old 07-21-2016, 11:59 PM - Thread Starter
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Wow, I didn't know about Reaction Subwoofers at all. They do not seem to be very popular in Germany. These are my favourites when it comes to the pictures because the seem to be the most beautiful for a living room. Apart from that I also like the HSU, Rythmik and PSA. The JTR may be nice but it is too ugly. I would have to think about ways how to convince my wife :-(

Would you go ported? I heard that sealed ones offer more punch while ported ones dig deeper? Also a myth?

I will have a look at the mid bass module tutorial later on. Thank you!

But I also have a general question: Is it correct that the punch is in frequencies from 50 Hz to 100 Hz? Do all subwoofers that offer for example 105 dB in the range from 50 Hz to 100 Hz have the same punch? Volume = Punch? Or are factors like the size and weight of the speaker important as well?

The thing is that I have never pushed my SVS SB12 so far that the limiter came in. So perhaps it is not about volume and the thing I am looking for is simply not included in the audiostream?

Thanks, guys.
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post #22 of 30 Old 07-22-2016, 01:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rollomat View Post
These are my favourites when it comes to the pictures because the seem to be the most beautiful for a living room. Apart from that I also like the HSU, Rythmik and PSA. The JTR may be nice but it is too ugly. I would have to think about ways how to convince my wife :-(

JTR offers several real wood veneer finishes as well as custom veneer that would convince your wife easily. All their cabinets made and finished by a fine furniture grade cabinet maker close by. In my case, My wife insisted they match our custom teak kitchen plus our teak lining room furniture and casework,. So I sent JTR a panel from the custom cabinets in our kitchen and Jeff matched the grain and finish exactly. Here are our four JTR Captivator 1400's in Premium quarter sawn filigreed teak:










Here are some samples of other custom finishes:


Black Oak




Maple and Walnut




Rosenut




Zebrawood






----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



Even though dual HSU VTF-15H's or dual VTF3mk5's may bring SPL output up to the range of one JTR Captivator 118 of one Captivator 1400, the Cap is still a better purchase because the driver build quality and extremely high motor strength of 256 (bl^2/re) yields more control over the woofer cone. This increased control shows in the superior measurements of the Cap 1400 over the HSU VTF-15H at databass.com. The HSU VTF 15 has a lot of positive reviews in the press, but at the AVS subwoofer shoot outs the JTR Captivator (and the Seaton Subversive) always come out on top.[I]


2011 Kansas City Subwoofer Meet - Captivator Review:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Archaea View Post

Here are the individual results, total score, and then the calculated rankings:

PreAudition Ranking: our unauditioned collective expectation of final rank
1. JTR Captivator
2. Seaton Submersive
3. HSU VTF-15H
4. Yamaha CW218V
5. Epik Empire
6. SVS PB-12+
7. Jamo D7
8. Jenson MS500

Cosmetics/Wife Acceptance Factor (WAF) Ranking: (fit, finish, size)
1. SVS PB-12 +
2. HSU VTF-15H
3. Epik Empire
4. Seaton Submersive
5. JTR Captivator
6. Jamo D7
7. Yamaha CW218V
8. Jenson MS500

Build Quality Ranking: (inert, heavy, durable, construction quality)
1. JTR Captivator
2. SVS PB-12 +
3. HSU VTF-15H
4. Seaton Submersive
5. Epik Empire
6. Yamaha CW218V
7. Jamo D7sub
8. Jenson MS500

FINAL MUSIC RANKING:
The collective individual scores recorded and averaged during our testing revealed the subs ranked into the following order for finest overall music reproduction ability:
1. Seaton Submersive
2. JTR Captivator
3. HSU VTF-15H
4. Epik Empire
5. SVS PB-12+
6. Yamaha CW218V
7. Jamo D7sub
8. Jenson MS500

FINAL MOVIE RANKING:
The collective individual scores recorded and averaged during our testing revealed the subs ranked into the following order for finest overall movie watching enjoyment:
1. JTR Captivator
2. Seaton Submersive
3. Epik Empire
4. Yamaha CW218V
5. HSU VTF-15H
6. SVS PB-12+
7. Jenson MS500
8. Jamo D7sub

Quote:
Originally Posted by carp View Post
Finally it was time for the Captivator. Involuntary smiles became involuntary laughter. You have to be kidding me. Who turned on the fan? In the winter time you would have a wind chill in this room on bass heavy movies. Rediculous. I don't want to get too carried away here, the difference between the Cap and the Submersive was MUCH closer than the difference between the 2 of them and the Empire and HSU. For me the biggest seperator scene between the Cap and Sumbersive was the plane crash on Knowing, but I did feel that the Cap was better on all the movie scenes.

Which would I take if I could have taken home either the Submersive or the Captivator? Well, I would have gone with the sub that I actually did take home - the Captivator. Yes music is my priority, but to be fair I hadn't experienced that kind of bass feel with movies before and I REALLY liked it. What really excites me is that the Cap was quite a bit better in the "chew up the bass and forget to spit it out" room than the HSU was in my room and there was even a bigger difference between the HSU in my room compared to Archea's room (did you follow all that?). In theory that should mean that the Cap will abolutely crush me in my room.

BTW, the Captivator is so intimidating in person. The pictures of the driver don't really do it justice. In person it looks scary. I drug it down to my basement last night and it's looking great in my room. Pictures and impressions of how it's doing in my room to come.

Quote:
Originally Posted by echaot View Post
JTR: Highest wow factor in terms of chest thump and effect. The THX clip was very impressive (loudest and smoothest sounding at the end as more of the low end gets tested). The ports were blasting lots of air forward (evidenced by luke's cap being blown towards the couch from resting near the port on the floor).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Archaea View Post

My personal ranking of the subs demoed is
1. JTR Captivator
2. Seaton Submersive
3. SVS PB-12 +
4. HSU VTF-15H
5. Epik Empire
6. Jamo D7sub
7. Yamaha CW218V
8. Jensen MS500


Why Did I Rank What Where?

Gold Medal First Prize - Winner by TKO - JTR Captivator
That Captivator moved air about 10 feet to the listening position with the strength of a box fan! I kid you not. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pCR9iCsVWCM Just watch the video! This is a sub for men who like to eat their steaks rare. Sure it wasn't perfect, but it was so darn impressive in movies I couldn't help but absolutely fall in love with it. I've never felt bass like that in my entire life. PERIOD. Jeff pushed it harder than he needed to and the fact that he wasn't worried about damaging it means to me that's it's built like a gosh darn tank! On the ScubaSteve2365 demo disk there was one particular LFE video that never made sense to me why it was there. Jeff let us listen to some of the other demos on the captivator sub and I finally understood why the Book of Eli scene is in that section. No other sub I've watched that movie with did it justice. The Captivator brought that scene to life. AMAZING gun blast reproduction! Obviously the Master and Commander scene was amazing and the War of the Worlds scene was absolutely ridiculous. It didn't fail at music either. The Linkin Park and Janet Jackson tracks sounded better on the Captivator than the Submersive. The Captivator moved my wall on the Mia - Ghetto Superstar song like no other sub. It literrally made every one feel like their eyes were bouncing, because the wall my projector screen was mounted to was vibrating so much. The Captivator is just a raw savage beast on tactile output -- expensive!!!, but my favorite if money is no object!

19 out of 20 for music for me - lost a point on the smooth category when the 100hz to 20hz sweep didn't sound 100% smooth like the Jamo D7, Epik Empire, HSU VTF-15H, and Seaton Submersive did)
44.5 out of 45 on movies for me - lost a 1/2 point on the Orphanage scene (SVS and Seaton scored five on that scene for my rating)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Luke Kamp View Post

JTR Captivator

Just a beast of a sub and looks intimidating as hell in person. I am not sure how much time Jeff had to put this driver in and get on the road, he stated once that the hpf may need to be higher frequency I believe. Jeff pulled amp to give it to Carp, and I got to look in and check it out. If I hit box with my car, the box would win. If I got a running start and a good swing, I could knock out an elephant with the magnet.

Music
Puts the large ported 18" don't have good sq to rest (I use to hate people arguing this with me in car audio days). It was very very good with music and a close second to SubM IMO.

Movies
Well now the room was getting pretty full eating bass all day, and threw up all over me! That driver was moving some serious air. Air shot out at me like I was on an the Indiana Jones amusement ride getting shot at with air darts. Now just like several of us, Jeff pushed it a bit too hard most of the time I felt. This subwoofer with his powerful amp is a no joke ported sub, and even it has its limits. I feel that this passive subwoofer and adding your own amp and hpf to have an amp limited subwoofer is the best buy ported subwoofer offering available at this time.


---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------




Driver Comparison



HSU VTF 15H Driver




JTR Captivator 1400 Driver




DataBass.com Test Results


HSU VTF 15H

http://www.data-bass.com/data?page=system&id=100

Captivator 1400

http://www.data-bass.com/data?page=system&id=117

"It is a lot of sub for the money. One of the more powerful all around home audio subs that has been tested for Data-Bass to this point, regardless of price. The Cap1400 put forth an impressive set of measurements and offers loads of deep bass headroom.

The basic frequency response measurement for the JTR Cap1400 indicates that it conforms very closely to the manufacturer spec of 16-200Hz +/-1dB. The response is impressively flat owing to a bit of DSP programming in the amplifier no doubt."



CEA Max Passing SPL






Spectrogram






Waterfall Decay






JTR Reviews


Captivator Review

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/113-su...er-review.html


Captivator 118HT Review (less powerful driver)

http://www.hometheatershack.com/foru...ht-review.html

Last edited by Peterc613; 07-22-2016 at 01:56 AM.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rollomat View Post
Would you go ported? I heard that sealed ones offer more punch while ported ones dig deeper? Also a myth?

But I also have a general question: Is it correct that the punch is in frequencies from 50 Hz to 100 Hz? Do all subwoofers that offer for example 105 dB in the range from 50 Hz to 100 Hz have the same punch? Volume = Punch? Or are factors like the size and weight of the speaker important as well?

RULE - THERE"S NO REPLACEMENT FOR DISPLACEMENT !!!!!

The larger the cone and the wider the X-max travel of the driver, the more air a sub displaces and the more effect it will have by better coupling to the room air and inducing a pressure wave (sound). That's why 18" drivers with 34mm Xmax each way can move so much air. (please watch first video in above post - JTR Captivator vs Sleeping Bag)


Here is some info the Master List of bass movies with frequency charts, a graphic showing common musical instruments, their frequency range and where they impact you. Below that is a stock figure from a report about which parts of the body resonate with which frequencies creating greater sensation of "chest slam etc..." So while chest slam may occur best at 50-100 Hz, that feeling of head pressure doesn't resonate until 20-30 Hz.


https://www.avsforum.com/forum/113-su...cy-charts.html








Ported subs have more output than a sealed sub but roll off dramatically after the port tuning frequency. Sealed subs have less output than ported but they roll off gradually into the single digits (with room gain). You can add multiple sealed subs to compensate for the loss in output.

[IMG][/IMG]

Theoretically, every doubling in displacement (two subwoofers) or doubling in power (twice the watts) equals approx. +6 dB increase in SPL volume. This is however dependent on wether the subs are co-located (in the same position), or located in different locations where room acoustics might cause them to cancel each other out at certain frequencies. Seaton Sound's F18's are designed to be stacked together on either side or under the screen so this is not an issue.



Does that mean ported subs are better? Not necessarily so. It depends on the size of your room, the extension of the subwoofer, and other things like room acoustics and slab vs raised subfloor.

The frequency wavelengths produced by subwoofers are often much longer than the longest room dimension of your home theater. Therefore your room and the subwoofer are coupled as a system producing low bass. If you have a reasonable sized room, at some point the boundary reinforcement of the room gives some room gain. The smaller the room the higher up this gain starts and the more SPL it contributes at the lowest frequencies. The larger the room the lower this gain starts and the room may contribute very little room gain.

With a room size at 25' x 15' x 9.5" you are trying to pressurize a volume of 3,563 cu ft which is a medium sized room. Your longest dimension will be be the diagonal axis between the corner ceiling and opposite corner floor:




(25x25) + (15x15) + (9.5x9.5) = 940.25

Diagonal = square root of 940.25 or 30.66 ft

Room gain is normally 12dB/octave starting at the frequency where the longest room dimension is 1/2 wavelength. A wavelength in feet is the speed of sound (1130 feet per second) divided by frequency. In your room the longest dimension is 30.66 ft, so room gain will start at 18.43 Hz (30.66' x 2 = 61.32' and 1130/61.32 = 18.43 Hz.) and be up +12 dB by 9.2 Hz.. Gain increases every octave below that frequency so you could be up +24 dB by 4.6 Hz (an octave lower equals one half the frequency, an octave higher equals double the frequency).

But remember, these are all 'theoretical numbers' representing a best case scenario. Many factors influence room gain from sub placement, location of nearby surfaces, floor or wall construction (slab/raised, drywall/stud or cinder block/basement HT) so real world results will usually be lower.

SEALED SUB

Sealed subs normally roll off gradually below 20+ Hz and a really good design may have extension down to the single digits. However the output of a sealed sub us usually down down 10-15 Db at 10 Hz and down 20-30 dB by 5 Hz. So in your room (all things being perfect), room gain will compensate for the roll off on TWO subs:

Frequency Response - One Sub

Freq.......Sealed......Rm Gain.....Net
18 Hz.....0 dB.........0 dB...........0 dB
9.2 Hz...-15 dB......+12 dB.......-2 dB
4.6 Hz...-30 dB......+25 dB.......-5 dB

Now if you want to get a flat frequency response down to10Hz and below you are going to need more sealed subs. Each doubling of sub displacement gets you up to +6 dB output across the bandwidth. So two sealed 18's in your room would theoretically look like this:

Frequency Response - Two Subs

Freq.......Sealed......Rm Gain.....Net
18 Hz.....0 dB.........0 dB...........0 dB
9.2 Hz...-9 dB........+12 dB.......+3 dB
4.6 Hz...-24 dB......+25 dB.......+1 dB

This assumes that you have two subs with extension to 4.6 Hz and which are strategically placed to eliminate phase cancellations in an ideal room that's perfectly sealed (no leaks through ceiling recessed fixtures, wall outlets, under door jambs etc.).

In in a very large room where the longest dimension is 49 ft, don't expect to get any appreciable room gain until approx. 11.53 Hz (49 ft x 2 = 98 Ft, 1130/98 = 11.53 Hz.). This could also be true if your theater opens up to other areas of the house like a stairwell, pass through to a kitchen.

Therefor, if you have an average sized room then using a sealed sub (or multiples thereof) will give you the best of both worlds - more output from multiple drivers plus more extension supported by room gain. Effectively the room gain compensates for the roll off in a sealed sub and you can get flat extension into the single digits.

But if you don't have a reasonably sized room volume, or can only afford to buy one or two subs versus four to eight sealed subs, then ported may be your best bet.

The reason why we're all so excited about the JTR Captivators is because there are other ported subs on the market that have the SPL volume but they're only tuned to 20 Hz and roll off below that. There are also a few ported subs with sub 15 Hz extension but they do not put out a lot of dB's at the lowest frequencies. The JTR Captivators promises to give us the best of both worlds Volume AND extension to 15 Hz.
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Wow, thanks a lot for your detailled post and your expertise! Now the JTRs aren't ugly any more and so I took a look at its size and unfortunately it is too high.

So if I got your post right, then two sealed subs might do in a room of my size, right? And if I read the graphics of the human body resonance correctly, I am indeed looking for a subwoofer that is good with frequencies between 50 Hz and 100 Hz, right?

The crucial question is: What makes a sub a good sub for frequencies between 50 Hz and 100 Hz. Is it all about volume (dB)? Or are there other factors that are decisive for a punchy bass (for example group delay, decay rate, size and weight of speaker etc.)?

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Peter, you are referencing old data. The data-bass testing was done on the VTF-15 MK1. The MK2 is a major step up in every way. Still not a JTR 1400, but a pair of MK2's would make a formidable system no doubt.
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Rollomat, a good sub is all about low distortion and high SPL. It's as simple as that. Dual driver systems normally offers the most mid bass slam, due to the dual drivers adding to the overall system efficiency. Many of the sub's out there that have really good deep bass, are not very sensitive above 50hz. PB13 Ultra is a prime example. Great sub, but you can tell by looking at the base response vs max burst response, a bit of DSP shaping is applied to keep it flat. Even then it starts to roll off above 50hz when pushed to its limits.

If you go to database.com, The V3600i has 3-6db more output then the XV30se. +6db @ 16hz, +3db in the 20-30hz, +6db above 40hz and deeper extension. I would also say PSA has top notch customer service and Tom is very easy to get a hold of. Jeff @ JTR does a great job for a 1 man operation. Either way you go whether its Seat, JTR, PSA, Rythmik, or HSU, I doubt you will be disappointed.

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Hey experts,

thanks again for your help. If it's really all about distortion and a high SPL between 50 Hz and 100 Hz, I might consider keeping my SVS SB12, because according to the limiter lamp/bulb of the sub I did not push the SB12 to its limits because the lamp never got red. This means that the SB12 should have enough power and a SPL which is high enough for my needs, correct? If this is the case a) no other subwoofer would offer more punch under my conditions and b) I have to assume that the audiostream does not offer / provide the sound I'm looking for, correct?

Or could a lower distortion lead to more punch?
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@Peterc613 -

1. you have a lovely home!
2. what are your thoughts on importance of mid-bass? I've read opinions here that its more imp than chasing low end out put because mid-bass is where you feel the impact but <20Hz is mostly pressurization only. It is much cheaper to get sub that has high output in 50-100Hz region.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rollomat View Post
Hey experts,

thanks again for your help. If it's really all about distortion and a high SPL between 50 Hz and 100 Hz, I might consider keeping my SVS SB12, because according to the limiter lamp/bulb of the sub I did not push the SB12 to its limits because the lamp never got red. This means that the SB12 should have enough power and a SPL which is high enough for my needs, correct? If this is the case a) no other subwoofer would offer more punch under my conditions and b) I have to assume that the audiostream does not offer / provide the sound I'm looking for, correct?

Or could a lower distortion lead to more punch?
Hi,

I don't think I would reach those first two conclusions yet, at all. Frankly, I would be a little surprised if a single SB12 could really ring your bell in a room that size. What AVR trim level are you using for your sub, and what is your typical master volume when you are not getting enough chest punch? There may be things that you can do to enhance your current sub's performance. For instance, have you done a sub crawl to optimize the sub's location? But as stated earlier, there is no replacement for displacement, and I am a little skeptical that the single SB12 can provide enough for your room. Still, it is worth exploring ways to optimize what you have as part of this discussion.

Regards,
Mike

GUIDE TO SUBWOOFER CALIBRATION AND BASS PREFERENCES

* The Guide linked above is a comprehensive guide to Audio & HT systems, including:
Speaker placements & Room treatments; HT calibration & Room EQ; Room gain; Bass
Preferences; Subwoofer Buyer's Guide: Sealed/ported; ID subs; Subwoofer placement.
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