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Sort of an interesting perspective from a musician.
Yes, I have always admired the dynamic range (this is not merely SPL), pitch and tonal variations of individual cannons. They can be so subtly expressive.
 

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On an electric bass, the 2H and 3H will be much higher than the 1H on any 34/35" scale bass, at least to A (fret5 on low E, higher on a 5er), so being able to get to 31Hz flat to play the low B is pretty much irrelevant. The tonal characteristics are coming from the higher harmonics. Many will also tell you that one of the best recorded or live bass sounds is from an Ampeg 4/6/8x10 (I think they sound like mud) which begins to roll of at about 70Hz, second order.
I measured a ton of my basses on one of the bass forums about 15 years back, have been playing and doing live sound and FOH for most of the last 35 years. There is very little, if anything useful, below 40Hz on just about any rock/pop/jazz record. And below 40Hz on a stage is a PITA.
I agree with everything you said. Without harmonics, music would be very bland.
 

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Tower placement in a room is a compromise between mids/highs and bass response with respect to the listener position. A sub can be more readily placed for smoother response independent of the source of mids and highs. I like towers too but they are no match for good bookshelf + sub.

But it's better to have towers and sub!!!


The point here is you have $1200 budget, my opinion is get the best floor stander for the money that can cover to 40Hz and forget the sub until more money is available.
If the OP is happy with the sound of his book shelf speakers, then a very good sub which can be had for $1200 would save the OP from having to buy another pair of speakers down the road. Unless there is a "Mrs" or gf involved, its easier to place a sub in a room respective to the listener position for balanced sound then towers.
 

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I’d try and dial in that sub with your bookshelf speakers. Usually when I have heard a sub that was “too much” it’s because of one or two offensive bass peaks that can easily be ironed out a few ways or a combination of a few ways. You can’t see these waves of course, but if you could measure them you’d see how drastic they can be.

These room modes can be mitigated by sub placement, so try several locations, not just one or two. Use corner placement and run Audyssey, then try other locations. You can also help bass response through the use of multiple subs. Multiple subs will work together to provide a more linear bass response. Look into REW, using a UMik and MiniDSP tool to iron out room effects on bass using PEQ. That’s a learning curve, but very worth it.

Just getting towers won’t mitigate bass modes and the best location for towers in regards to I&SS aren’t usually the best for mitigating room modes with bass. Don’t expect world changing events. I use four 15” subs in my system and I have towers mainly for one reason; they come with steady built in stands. Good stands for bookshelves cost about the same.

The bass from my subs is deep, immersive, and captivating, not the least bit booming. The woofers in each sub are hardly moving, but the bass is anything but not noticed, and quite appreciated!
 

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If the OP is happy with the sound of his book shelf speakers, then a very good sub which can be had for $1200 would save the OP from having to buy another pair of speakers down the road. Unless there is a "Mrs" or gf involved, its easier to place a sub in a room respective to the listener position for balanced sound then towers.
It is OP's option to buy floor stander too.
 

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Discussion Starter #67
The Mrs.

Unless there is a "Mrs" or gf involved, its easier to place a sub in a room respective to the listener position for balanced sound then towers.



There's a Mrs. but she kind of just rolls her eyes and ignores the latest greatest thing I'm fawning over. Then again, I've managed to keep the room organized and functional beyond a listening studio. I'm going to be testing my limits if I buy a sub and find out that it needs to be placed in an awkward location.
 

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Discussion Starter #68
I think that depends on size of room...larger room...harder for bookshelves to be as great. also, smaller rooms, harder for towers to be great.

Room is basically 16x15. One corner has an entrance to the guest room and the other "corner" on that side is a landing coming out of the garage and up to the main level. That corner adds a lot of open space and isn't part of the 16x15 measurement. I'll try to add a pic.
 

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I think that depends on size of room...larger room...harder for bookshelves to be as great. also, smaller rooms, harder for towers to be great.
This is one of those audio truisms, that just isn't true. A lot depends upon factors like directivty, shape of the room/dimensions and many other factors. Plus, even if your room was 20m long, and your listening distance from the speakers is only 3m, then your room, in terms of SPL required, might as well only be 3m long. The speakers don't need to fill the space behind you that you are not occupying.
I had zero difficulty getting my very large towers to play nice in my 1830cf room.
 
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