One dB is usually considered to be one just noticeable difference. Does the one dB bass boost sound appreciably different on your set-up? I'm not doubting your choice, but I would encourage you to try a bit more boost. Of course, a lot depends on your speakers, your room, your mood and your headroom, for that matter.
The way we hear bass is connected to the Sound Pressure Level (SPL, or colloquially, "volume"). For music
, for which there is no real reference level, thanks to the knavish behavior of the music recording industry, I usually use a bass tone control boost of +
6, and play the music at what seems to my ears to be "concert level." At my "concert level" DEQ is expected not
to be needed, but I can use the tone controls to season to taste.
I paid an electrical engineer audiophile friend to make me a black box that pushes the bass up another 3 dB, if I want it, giving me a total of 9 dB of possible boost in the bass between 80 Hz and about 200 Hz. Of course the tone controls only work with DEQ turned off, and, unfortunately, only affect the Right Front and Left Front channels on most AVRs and AVPs, and do not affect the subwoofer. So, my subwoofer is turned up so that it will "meet" the RF and LF bass elevation at (arbitrarily) the +
9 dB level. That boost forms a practically straight line from about 175Hz down to about 39Hz. Below that, the response rolls off until it tails off at 20 Hz. The crossover to the sub is at 80 Hz. [See Mike's guide to see how to turn up a subwoofer properly. Guide to Subwoofer Calibration and Bass Preferences
] I almost never use treble boost or cut.
On Monk's Dream, which I'm listening to right now, my "concert level" is about 86 dB with peaks of about 90dB, "C" weighted, "Fast," on my SPL meter (some classical pieces can be much louder, e.g., Fanfare for the Common Man, The Great Gate of Kiev, and Beethoven or Mahler symphonies can peak at 110 dB).
, we have a real reference level, thanks to the movie industry's foresight, and THX rattling their cage (actually, I think lobbying for standards may have gone back to Mike Todd and his sound guy Joseph Kane). I end up playing most movies at 5 to7 dB below reference. My use of the bass control, the black box, and the subwoofer are the same for movies and music.
Now, with music recordings there is a fly in the ointment. It is common practice for record company "suits" to require that he bass be attenuated by anywhere between 3 or 4 dB and, worst case, 25 dB.
Some mixers have objected, but that threatens job security. I suppose if a band is "big" enough, they could threaten the "suits." In addition to that travesty, the area between 1K Hz and 5K Hz is sometimes boosted.
This is evidentially all part of "the loudness wars." The labels want their songs to be the loudest (without over-recording due to too much bass) when some one twirls the car radio dial, so they get noticed, remembered, and purchased. And, we wouldn't want to overload cheap earbuds with too much bass, would we? For more detail, see Chris A's threads on "The Missing Octave" on the Klipsch Community Forum. Chris has "de-mastered" zillions of bass shy, harsh sounding disks to cure this problem. He uses Audacity (not to be confused with Audyssey), and perhaps other tools. A few disks can't be helped much, e.g., those that were dynamically compressed rather that simply limited (although DBX has some tools one could try).
The problem is the worst with rock, metal, alternative, pop. It does happen with classical and jazz, but a little less often. For some reason, choral music often has the bass practically removed.
Anyone who has been fairly close to a large chorus knows how absurd that is.
I haven't the energy (yet) to try de-mastering. For me, using the bass controls, the box, and cranking up the sub are enough ... for now.
Sorry for responding to your straightforward question with a fairly curved answer.