Subs need to move a large volume of air for deep bass which you just can't do with a small driver. The smallest subwoofer drivers are 8", which means that you're up to at least 9" when you add the enclosure.
Just throw it in a corner and tell the wife it's a new, stylish ultra-modern end-table which is all the rage in Paris these days.
Or skip the sub and use full-range left/right mains, or add a tactile transducer to shake the couch.
besides, most people forget that 'sub' means.. 'Sub-sonic', which means:' below the threshold of normal human actualization'. So, a subwoofer MUST by definition, produces clean, highl evel tones BELOW 20hz. Not above. Everything else is just a woofer. Over 99% of all 'subwoofers' on the market aren't really in any way shape or form actually doing what they are supposed to do.
So, a custom car box, painted black, witha shielded woofer, or, a in-wall sub, converted for home use, quite possibly. They DO exist, but may not fit the price range, or may not be designed correctly.
storage space under my bed. They come as a pack of 4 and raise the couch or bed 2 inches in height. You said you needed one inch well here is a way to have a spare inch. When your disabled you have a lot more time to think of ways to do things. Buy the set and still have your 'rumble seat'.
You may want to check out Hsu Research, as it seems to meet your requirement of affordable but high-quality sound. The company's subwoofers were rated very highly in Widescreen Review's subwoofer edition, beating out many of the very expensive units available on the market.
I wonder why you gave up on placement of a small sub so quickly. My Sunfire is an eleven inch cube and it kicks but, flat to 18 Hz. Unless your room is sparsely furnished, it is easy to conceal it. And of course it's location is not nearly as critical as the rest of your speakers, especially if you don't cross it over too high.
The tactile transducer bolted to the frame of your sofa works for the inaudible notes. But if you have a typical system, with 5 small to medium speakers, you'll have a response gap from about 25 Hz to about 50 Hz.
SEEMS THE ATTACHMENT WAS BAD - I have refreshed it.
I was looking to put the sub under the couch to hide it
My room layout is attached. Behind the couch that I wanted to hide the sub under is a lot of space (with a pool table), so this is not a "small room". The Home Theater area is approx. 12 feet wide by 15 or so deep.
What about putting the sub where the side-table is? Will not enough of the sound get "through" the couches?
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