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Discussion Starter #1
Hi guys. I'm in the market to buy a new subwoofer for a very large space (my basement, which is probably on the order of 5000 cubic feet, although I don't really require "reference level" volumes. These will predominantly be used at something much lower than that). Eventually I'm going to have dual subs, but for now, in order to maximize my "final product", I want to spend what I can spend on the very best sub I can get for my budget, with the plan being to eventually add a second one when I can (I have a functioning home theater system already on the main floor that I'm reasonably happy with, so I'm not in a rush to get to the finish line with this).

I'm zeroed in on these three brands at the moment, and I just wanted to talk about some Pros-and-Cons that I think I'm seeing/reading, and see if anyone wanted to reaffirm or deny my current thought processes.

1) SVS - I already have an SVS PB-1000 in my upstairs system. It was my first "real" subwoofer (IE, not a big box store display model fart box). Their customer service is great, and everything I read and hear indicates that their amps are best-in-class (AV Rant listener here, for one thing). The high gloss piano black is appealing to me, too.

But, at a given price point, I do seem to be sacrificing driver size ($1400 for a PB12-Plus, $1200 for a PC12-Plus, where as PSA and Rythmik all have 15's at LOWER price points...

So where I'm at right now is that SVS has good looking (high gloss finish) subs containing THE BEST amps, but the smallest drivers that come at or near the highest prices...

2) Rythmik - Definitely seems to allow me to step up to a larger 15" driver (like the E15, which I can get in glossy piano black for $50 less than a PB12-Ultra), as long as I'm willing to go with a Sealed Sub (kinda wanted to go Ported for extra extension). Unfortunately, they don't seem to offer a glossy piano black option for their 12" Ported offerings, only the 15's... and the 600 Watt 15" Ported option, in high gloss, I think is out of my price range.

The sealed 15's could work though, and I love-love-love the idea of changing out the black cone for a silver one ($50 upcharge).

So Rythmik seems to be giving me great driver size at this price point, and I think the glossy black finish with the silver cone driver is my #1 choice aesthetically, but the amps all seem to be rated to lower power outputs than either the SVS's or the PSA's...

3) At this price point, something like the PSA V1500 seems very appealing, because its giving me the 15" driver size that the Rythmik offers, with 725 Watts RMS amplification (approaching what SVS advertises), all for only $1100... seems like a great buy for all of those reasons. But for the life of me, I can't seem to find anything on their website that indicates there might be an option to "up" the Satin Black Texture to something comparable to what SVS and Rythmik speakers offer above...

Performance matters to me. That's why I'm looking to spend this kind of money, and zeroing in on SVS, Rythmik, and PSA, rather than just driving over to Best Buy and buying a $250 fart box. But, for this kind of $$$, I'd be lying if I said aesthetics didn't factor into my decision...



So where I'm at right now is:
- Do I go with sealed 600 watt Rythmik, where I get a 15" cone and a REALLY appealing glossy black finish with a silver cone?

OR

- Do I go with the SVS PB12-Plus and get the massive 800 Watts RMS amplifier and the three giant ports, but limit myself to the 12" cone...

OR

- Is there a way to get that PSA V1500 in any sort of a more "premium" gloss finish?


Any thoughts/opinions/suggestions are welcome...
 

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I think only the sealed S1500 from PSA comes in veneer . You can easily go to PSA and chat with Tom , he's online almost 24/7

Me I like the bullet / scratch proof texture finish, no worries of touching them or the grand kid.
 

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I am confused why you are comparing two ported options to one sealed? If you are looking at sealed subs, then the SVS SB13, Rythmik E15, and PSA S1500 should be what you are looking at. If you want to compare ported models, then the SVS PB12+, Rythmik FV15HP, and PSA V15/1800 should be compared. PSA does not offer a gloss finish but they do offer real wood veneer options for a upcharge. Imo I would never buy a gloss sub anyway...you will spend more time carefully cleaning it then listening to it. Fwiw the standard PSA finish is really nice imo...much nicer then the imitation black ash on my SB12NSD. Other then that all 3 make great products. I would contact each company, speak with the owners or reps, and go with one that meets your needs.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I am confused why you are comparing two ported options to one sealed?
Because "the 600 Watt 15" Ported option, in high gloss, I think is out of my price range"?



If you are looking at sealed subs, then the SVS SB13, Rythmik E15, and PSA S1500 should be what you are looking at. If you want to compare ported models, then the SVS PB12+, Rythmik FV15HP, and PSA V15/1800 should be compared.
I *think* I want a Ported sub, because I *think* it will give me better performance at the expense of a larger footprint (a tradeoff I'm willing to make). But I also think that I don't know all (or much) of what there is to know about subs, which is why I'd love to hear any input you might have on any/all of the subs you mentioned there...

But to your point, "Type" isn't the variable I'd planned to "fix" (ported vs. sealed). Cost is (somewhat) fixed. I can afford only so much... and at this price, both Ported and Sealed subs can be had. Some with larger cones, some with higher rated power amplifications, some Ported and some Sealed, and some with a more desirable (for me at least) glossy finish... just trying to gauge people's thinking, is all.
 
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I agree with Basshead. Gloss black looks nice when its clean, free of dust and free of fingerprints. But its hard to keep it in that condition. For the price of a PB12+ you can also get a JTR 118HT or PSA V1800. JTR also offers custom finishes. For subs in the price range your looking at JTR>PSA>Rythmik>SVS would be my order of preference.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I agree with Basshead. Gloss black looks nice when its clean, free of dust and free of fingerprints. But its hard to keep it in that condition. For the price of a PB12+ you can also get a JTR 118HT or PSA V1800. JTR also offers custom finishes. For subs in the price range your looking at JTR>PSA>Rythmik>SVS would be my order of preference.
Thank you for the input!!!

I'm unfamiliar with JTR... but that's why I'm posting for advice! I'll go check them out.
 

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Really would contact the ID companies and inquire about the best sub option for your open/closed space, and see what they have to offer.
PSA does offer free shipping and returns on most of their subs, so you could demo the sub and return if you do not like. Others offer free shipping as well. I did a demo on a PSA subs, and it did not go back.
 

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Go duals and diy to save money.
 

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1) Most importantly, take sealed options off your list. They are the wrong product for your application and you don't have the budget to make them work(you need at least 4 high excursion sealed 18's to have a chance in your large space).

2) Forget about comparing subs based on amplifier power. Yes, a 600 watt sub is likely in a different league than a 50w sub. However, driver efficiency and cab size is much more meaningful than "watts". The amount of SPL a watt can produce will vary drastically based on efficiency and resistance i.e. 8 ohm, 4 ohm, 2 ohm driver etc. Example:
Sub A is 88dB efficient with 2000 watts.
Sub B is 94dB efficient with 500 watts.

Which sub is more powerful? Neither. Both subs will produce the same SPL. Doubling wattage, assuming the driver can handle the power, will add 3dB of output. Qaudrupling power adds 6 dB. In reality, not many drivers can handle a quadrupling of power without running into lots of distortion and compression.

3) Since we have narrowed our options down to ported and also realize that amp power is an almost meaningless metric in comparing subs, what we end up with is output, extension, and frequency response. Also to be considered is of course price, size, and aesthetics.

I agree with the sentiments already mentioned: PSA and Rythmik offer a better value overall than SVS simply due to performance(output, extension, sound quality). The third vendor you should consider given your budget would be Hsu.

My top picks would be:
1)Rythmik FV15HP. No other ported 15" sub matches its overall performance.
2) Hsu VTF15.2 or PSA V1500. I think these two subs will perform similarly, so choose based on aesthetics, price, availability, service, and place of manufacture(is it important to you whether a product you buy is made in USA or China?)
3) Rythmik FVX15 or Hsu VTF3.5

Those are the five subs I would look at to offer the best bang for the buck for your application.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
My top picks would be:
1)Rythmik FV15HP. No other ported 15" sub matches its overall performance.
2) Hsu VTF15.2 or PSA V1500. I think these two subs will perform similarly, so choose based on aesthetics, price, availability, service, and place of manufacture(is it important to you whether a product you buy is made in USA or China?)
3) Rythmik FVX15 or Hsu VTF3.5

Those are the five subs I would look at to offer the best bang for the buck for your application.
Excellent write-up. Thanks so much for the input.

The challenge I face right now appears to be just how important aesthetics are. Because the Rythmik FV15HP can be had for $1200 (in matte black), and the PSA V1500 for $1100, in "black satin". Both of which are within the budget I originally wanted to stick to ($1200).

But the upcharge to get the Rythmic FV15HP in the glossy black I think I want is $359 ($409 if I opt for the white cone, which I can't see myself spending an extra $359 and not going *all the way* and getting the cone, too), and PSA doesn't offer the V1500 in gloss (I spoke to Tom in the chat window).


So my options are:
1) Really exceed my budget ($409 over) and get the FV15HP with the finish I want.
2) Hit my budget, but without the aesthetic I wanted.
3) Slightly exceed my budget and go with the either the Rythmik E15HP or the SVS PB12-Plus ($200 over)


I don't know yet what I'm going to do about this... if you put a gun to my head and made me pick right now, what I think I'd do is go with the Rythmik FV15HP, in Black Matte, and "splurge" $50 for the white cone (I think I like the contrast)... decisions decisions.
 

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Couple quick comments,

1)Regarding amp quality. Well, I'd say ask someone like Daved50(on this forum) for his thoughts on the three amps.

2)You may also consider factoring in "perks" like warranty length, shipping policies, etc.

3)Be sure you consider shipping costs when doing your comparisons. The fv15hp shipping to you adds another $140 iirc.

Tom V.
Power Sound Audio
 

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Unless it is for music only, the E15HP is the wrong choice for your room. Trust me, it won't cut the mustard on movies in that space. The PB12-Plus would perform much better on movies. However, both the FV15HP and the V1500 would both noticeably outperform the PB12-Plus imo.

Here are the final options I would choose between:

1) FV15HP gloss, silver cone. Bite the bullet, get exactly what you REALLY want.
2) Order the V1500 $1099 shipped...it has a 30/45? day trial with free shipping both ways. I've seen the PSA finish in person and, although it is not piano black, it is much nicer in person than most people expect.
3) Don't rule out the Hsu VTF15.2 @ $1042 shipped. It has a very nice satin black finish that might appeal to you as an "in between" vs the piano black finish. Also a very capable performer.

I would NOT consider a sealed sub(unless you are music only), and the above three hold too much of an advantage over the PB12-plus imo.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Couple quick comments,

1)Regarding amp quality. Well, I'd say ask someone like Daved50(on this forum) for his thoughts on the three amps.

2)You may also consider factoring in "perks" like warranty length, shipping policies, etc.

3)Be sure you consider shipping costs when doing your comparisons. The fv15hp shipping to you adds another $140 iirc.

Tom V.
Power Sound Audio
Ugh. Good call. The plot thickens.

In that case the budget is REALLY starting to spiral out of control for everything but the PSA V1500 and the SVS PC12-Plus... and per the above feedback, it seems like the PSA V1500 is the clear winner, in terms of performance, in that head-to-head...

If I know my wife, she's probably going to reinforce the importance of the budget over the importance of the aesthetic...... but I will present her with a few of these options tonight and solicit her opinion.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Unless it is for music only, the E15HP is the wrong choice for your room. Trust me, it won't cut the mustard on movies in that space. The PB12-Plus would perform much better on movies. However, both the FV15HP and the V1500 would both noticeably outperform the PB12-Plus imo.

Here are the final options I would choose between:

1) FV15HP gloss, silver cone. Bite the bullet, get exactly what you REALLY want.
2) Order the V1500 $1099 shipped...it has a 30/45? day trial with free shipping both ways. I've seen the PSA finish in person and, although it is not piano black, it is much nicer in person than most people expect.
3) Don't rule out the Hsu VTF15.2 @ $1042 shipped. It has a very nice satin black finish that might appeal to you as an "in between" vs the piano black finish. Also a very capable performer.

I would NOT consider a sealed sub(unless you are music only), and the above three hold too much of an advantage over the PB12-plus imo.
You have been a great help here. Sincerely, thank you for the input.
 

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For around $1000 shipped, how about this beaut? I give you Seaton MFW-15 Turbo SS...



Seaton MFW-15 Turbo SS

http://www.seaton-sound-forum.com/po...317&trail=20#1

Seaton MFW-15 Turbo SS has a beefy driver, wood veneer cabinet, and Ice Power Amp. Similar offerings, if even available, from other vendors with wood veneer would cost at least $1200. Seaton MFW-15 Turbo SS would be @ $1695 each if produced from scratch today. Seaton and JTR subs are considered another step above the other ID sub companies. A typical Seaton sub is SEALED and is not cheap. So this is a great opportunity to get a PORTED Seaton.
 

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For around $1000 shipped, how about this beaut? I give you Seaton MFW-15 Turbo SS...



Seaton MFW-15 Turbo SS

http://www.seaton-sound-forum.com/po...317&trail=20#1

Seaton MFW-15 Turbo SS has a beefy driver, wood veneer cabinet, and Ice Power Amp. Similar offerings, if even available, from other vendors with wood veneer would cost at least $1200. Seaton MFW-15 Turbo SS would be @ $1695 each if produced from scratch today. Seaton and JTR subs are considered another step above the other ID sub companies. A typical Seaton sub is SEALED and is not cheap. So this is a great opportunity to get a PORTED Seaton.
If you reach out to Mark you may be able to get him to paint one for you. I got one of the sub par cabinets that they deemed necessary to paint, and its a really really nice black. I would call it a high sheen satin. It still shows a lot of dust as its reflective but it does not show finger prints like gloss black. Its really solid too, built like a tank, no cabinet resonance at all.

The moho finish shown above tho is the stock option and from the few pics I've seen it looks really nice too! That would be a very livable finish if it suits your tastes.
 

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I think only the sealed S1500 from PSA comes in veneer . You can easily go to PSA and chat with Tom , he's online almost 24/7

Me I like the bullet / scratch proof texture finish, no worries of touching them or the grand kid.
Yeah. I'm not a fan of piano gloss finishes either. Most of them scratch too easily. Almost have to vacuum them to get any large particles off and then use a micro fiber cloth. Otherwise, even the least little grain of sand type dirt can start putting those swirl marks in the finish when wiped off.
 
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