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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I currently have a 2.0 system with a HK3490 stereo receiver and Wharfedale EVO-2 30 speakers ( http://www.wharfedale.co.uk/Products...B/Default.aspx ). My system is 100% for music, and I am generally satisfied with the bass (the speakers are rated down to 35 hz).


Would I notice much improvement by getting a subwoofer? I'm not sure how much I am missing in the lower frequencies by not having a sub. If I do buy one I am looking at a budget around $400. My system is in an open basement about 1700 sq ft, although my listening area is in a corner about 15 x 15 ft. I would be looking for an accurate musical sub. With my budget would it be even possible to find a musical sub for an area that size?


One sub I have been considering is the Jamo sub 650 at around $400. Should I also consider 2 smaller subs, such as the Martin Logan Dynamo 500's which were on sale at newegg last week for $200? Or should I save my money and be happy with what I have?


Thanks for any suggestions.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by GordonP. /forum/post/20866791


about a 50/50 mix of progressive rock and classical, at moderate volumes.

probably not then...If you find yourself turning up the bass knob/level on your setup then perhaps, but those types of music aren't considered bass heavy by most people. Most older music there isn't a whole lot of difference between the sub on and sub off.....Some classical stuff will have bass, but really only if it's orchestral instead of piano based. an exception would be pipe organ music lovers who definitely love their subwoofers with those occasional 16hz notes that Dr. HSU is fond of demonstrating with his HSU research subwoofers.


If you end up looking for a subwoofer - start in the sealed subwoofer camp - given your preferences.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the advice Archaea. I suspected from the beginning that adding a sub wouldn't really pay off in my situation. Any other opinions out there? I wonder under which scenarios a subwoofer would make a big difference for music?
 

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bump for you for other opinions...


Here are people's collective favorites for subwoofer play...Listen to these tracks to get a few ideas...

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1324979


you probably won't hear what makes these tracks fun without a quality subwoofer, but you can at least see if any of this music has any appeal to you.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by GordonP. /forum/post/20868789


I wonder under which scenarios a subwoofer would make a big difference for music?

Pipe organ for one
 

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I think a sub will contribute to the orchestra music, and also the prog rock, if its recorded well. I don't think it will add much to, say, a violin quartet recording, but they definitely give more punch to bass drums, Tubas, Contrabassons, and the lower notes on pianos and harps. Depending on what you listen to, what you want to hear, etc, it might be worth investing in a subwoofer. I would look for a ported sub, to give you extension that is significantly better than your Wharfedale speakers. You might look at a Hsu STF2 or an Elemental Designs A2-300 or A3-250. You might also look into a Craigsub 10.2 from Chase Home Theater.
 

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35hz seems pretty good to me. A quality 12" sub can do better, and will relieve your speakers of having to produce the lowest notes on a bass guitar or low frequencies from a bass drum.


Not saying in your case a sub is mandatory. But I have never owned speakers a sub did not improve the sound of. I only use dual 10" subs, and I don't see those helping you too much based on what I recollect from testing them. But a quality 12" sub (or two,) could help.


Do you have a friend with a sub you can borrow? That would maybe be the cheapest way to test.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by GordonP. /forum/post/20866791


about a 50/50 mix of progressive rock and classical, at moderate volumes.

The issue is that the ear is not equally sensitive to lower bass notes as it is to midrange, say violin.


To bring out the deeper bass in your music you need a sub.


IMHO the electric bass benefits substantially from a sub as would any kind of synth/electric keyboard that are frequently present in rock.


The fact that you listen at moderate volumes also suggests that you would benefit from one good sub. At moderate volumes Fletcher-Munson calls for greater output at lower frequencies. This graph may help:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Equal-loudness_contour


If you look at the 80 phon trace, you will see how much louder frequencies below even 100 Hz need to be raised for equal loudness at 1,000 Hz.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks to everyone for the input. I listened to the sound samples ( http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1324979 ) and they aren't really my cup of tea. I did listen to a prog album that I consider has the best bass, and it sounded balanced on my system. I've listened to it many times on a system with a subwoofer, and the only thing missing on my current 2.0 system is that the walls didn't shake.


As far as a dedicated subwoofer helping my mains, I believe my receiver will send the same signal to them whether a subwoofer is connected or not (no crossovers or ability to set mains to 'small'). If I felt a sub would reduce midrange distortion I'd be more convinced to get one.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by GordonP.
Thanks to everyone for the input. I listened to the sound samples ( http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1324979 ) and they aren't really my cup of tea. I did listen to a prog album that I consider has the best bass, and it sounded balanced on my system. I've listened to it many times on a system with a subwoofer, and the only thing missing on my current 2.0 system is that the walls didn't shake.


As far as a dedicated subwoofer helping my mains, I believe my receiver will send the same signal to them whether a subwoofer is connected or not (no crossovers or ability to set mains to 'small'). If I felt a sub would reduce midrange distortion I'd be more convinced to get one.


In that case you'd use the sub's Xover. As it was said above, a sub will most likely improve the sound.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tdekany /forum/post/20872848


In that case you'd use the sub's Xover. As it was said above, a sub will most likely improve the sound.

I think I understand. If I got a HSU stf2 for instance, I would connect my L-R from my receiver directly to the subwoofer, and then connect the outputs from the subwoofer to my Wharfedales towers. Then I could use the crossover on the subwoofer to filter frequencies above 75 hz for instance to my towers, potentially increasing the clarity of the midranges? And at the same time I would increase the depth, volume and clarity of base with the subwoofer.


By connecting my towers through my subwoofer do I lose anything, or is the signal passed at full strength? I usually see the recommendation to connect the sub via the sub-out jack on the receiver.


Thanks for all the excellent suggestions.
 

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I am not a basshead, so I essentially had the same doubts as the OP. I evetually wound up getting a Jamo D7 (which I'm very happy with).


My main reasons for getting a sub:


(1)When listening to music at mediium to low levels, the sub really helps out. So I echo all of Spyboy's comments above. If I turn up the volume quite loud (again, for music) I probably don't need the sub, but at "normal" listening levels the sub really helps.


(2)When the system is being used for movies, the sub definitely raises the excitement factor. I'm pretty sure my towers wouldn't have the oomph required for a typical "action" movie.


In short, being a music lover, I was never convinced of the need for a sub, but now I'm happy to have one.
 

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I would in your case probably start by getting a spl meter - fx an analog from Radioshack - then I would download REW and have your computer do a measuremet of what your in room frequencyresponse actually looks like - then I would think I had some of answers I would need to make the choice of whether to get a sub.
 

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I struggle with the op's exact question. I'm debating adding a sub to paradigm studio 10s vs upgrading to a tower like the 60s or song towers. My interest is 100% music.


I'm currently leaning toward the tower route. By the time I save up for the quality sub I'm considering, I might as well get towers.
 

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I struggled with the same question, and after a year of mulling it over I bought a sub.

I mostly bought the sub because everyone else here has one and I justed wanted it, well as it turns out I needed a sub after all.

Based strictly on my own experience I think you need a sub too.

The thing is; you have pretty nice speakers, so if you want to add a sub it can't just be any sub.

For you to get a noticeable benefit without running the sub hot, it needs to have an honest 20Hz output.

I just added the Outlaw LFM1-EX to my system a couple of months ago and trying not to be a fanboi I do recommend it without reservation.

Even at low volume levels the sub adds a presence or weight to the music that was not there before without otherwise being noticeable.

I attached a before and after sub graph of the change in the low frequency response.

 

Graph_100Hz_Outlaw LFM1-EX.pdf 198.11328125k . file

 

RF83 only.pdf 126.3603515625k . file
 

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