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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
So, my friend is driving me nuts. He's not completely satisfied with the bass from his ported 18" sub (cyclops). He's telling me he wants more "theater bass" not music bass.. I had to ask for more info. Apparently he would like movie theater bass not necessarily under 20hz bass.
The same sound you find in a movie theater during explosive and action scenes. I assume that means somewhere between 25hz -100hz or up to 200hz? around 120db maybe a bit more (for the LOUD explosions). Just quick tight hard bass.
He has sealed subs near field for anything under 20hz.

Option 1: Build either a L-Horn, G-Horn, or Submaximus. After looking through the plans the Maximus looks easiest followed by the L-horn. But he will build whichever is the BEST choice. He would rather build 1 sub that fits his needs vs 4 subs that do not.

Option 2: Add another ported sub. Not sure if he will go for that. Full size Marty or another Cyclops.


Option 3: Add some MBM from diysoundgroup. I assume the largest box. How many would he require?


Option 4: No such beast lol


Also, a big thanks to LTD02 for all the help and plans. also lukeamdman for G-Horn plans.


He has a basement theater 25ft long, 18ft wide, 8 foot ceiling. I realize much of this will be subjective since 1 sub is adequate for some while others want/need more. He was one 20amp circuit available, could use an Inuke 6000dsp bridged or another brand as long as its compatible with 20amp circuit. I assume if his only option was to upgrade his circuit, he would.

If he builds a horn sub, which driver should be buy? He was thinking of the UXL-18 and which amplifier?

OH, His current setup is Klipsch Heresy II, KG center and rears, two 18" sealed UM-18 and one SI-18 Cyclops.

If Possible can he use the SI-18DS4 or Ultimax 18?

If you need more info. fire away.
 

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Three 18s isn't a small amount of bass if setup correctly. Have you guys properly measured and EQd the subs appropriately? That's a vital step. Maybe all he needs is a good house curve. How did you integrate the sealed and ported subs? They'll cancel each other out at certain frequencies if not set up properly.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Three 18s isn't a small amount of bass if setup correctly. Have you guys properly measured and EQd the subs appropriately? That's a vital step. Maybe all he needs is a good house curve. How did you integrate the sealed and ported subs? They'll cancel each other out at certain frequencies if not set up properly.
He has everything set up for 20hz and below bass. Both Sealed subs are on each side of his couch while his Ported Cyclops is under his screen. We hear and feel the bass below 20hz but its the upper area's that are lacking. It could just be an SPL fix. Currently he's set around 75hz. He doesn't need the chest slam some want from concerts or audio although he won't complain if its achievable. He wants the loud bass achieved in movie theaters.


I assumed a Horn sub would be his best solution since they can play higher HZ (25hz-200hz) and a lot more DB ie. 130db.
I'm not sure how many MBM he would need to achieve the same performance via a Ghorn, Lhorn, SubMaximus.
Maybe building a single or dual 18" ported sub would work as well with a higher tune?


I did a quick search on these for reference....... They use Eminence, Celestion and B&C woofers depending on model. Not sure WHICH model from each manufacturer.
http://www.qsc.com/cinema/products/loudspeakers/subwoofers/

Would something like this be ok? If, so im sure a ported clone would be much easier than a horn. I never built a subwoofer to achieve high spl. Maybe a higher sensitivity drivers 90db and up?


Since I'll probably be the one building it, I'll gladly take the easiest option with the best performance.
*** its not easy to put into words what his brain is thinking. I used the movie theater as the best example, loud bass but nothing low, ie ground shaking.
 

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Far be it from me to discourage anyone from adding more subs, but I thought that the EQ question was spot on. And I didn't really understand the answer that everything was set for 20Hz and down. I'm not sure how you would do that, but if you did, then that would be part of the problem. I assume that the frequency range your friend is describing is the mid-bass range from about 50Hz to 100Hz. Other than the LFE channel which goes up to 120Hz, it is unlikely that the subs would be affecting much above about 80Hz or so, assuming crossovers are set to the nominal standard of 80Hz.

I have two thoughts. First, your friend could try setting a 60Hz crossover to his Heresy's, and using the bass tone control to add some additional mid-bass punch that way. Second, most people boost the bass on their subs after calibrating with an AVR. The average boost, or house curve as referred to earlier, would probably be about 3 to 6db, but some people boost much more than that.

Given the two subs flanking the MLP, with another up front, it is unlikely that localization would be an issue. So, he could also try going in the opposite direction and raise the crossover on the fronts and center. Boosting the subs would be the key to making that work, too. It's hard to know which would be better until he tried. If he added a miniDSP (much cheaper than another sub, and potentially very helpful in any case) your friend could shape the house curve to emphasize certain portions of the frequency range.

There is certainly nothing wrong with continuing to add subs, but I am really not sure that he is maximizing the resources he currently has available to him. :)

Regards,
Mike
 

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A measurement mic is one of the most valuable tools a DIY sub builder can have. Your friend's biggest issue could be room modes or sub placement, and adding another sub might not fix that. He also could easily have phase issues between the ported and sealed subs causing cancelations in response. $75 for a UMIK-1 is cheap compared to the $500 or whatever for a UXL. And without measurements it's hard to make a good suggestion.

Here's an old measurement of my four sealed subs, blue is before and green is after EQ. Before EQ, they didn't impress, but with huge hump flattened out, and then run about 6dB hot, they're great for movies, and go deep and flat. I wouldn't have known how to EQ them without measuring.


I wouldn't recommend mixing a horn with the existing ported and sealed subs just because sorting out the phase will be a mess. If you were to go that route, I'd consider dropping the cyclops for the horns. If I'm buying a new driver, I'd go for the B&C 21SW152 as the driver for any of those designs, though I think LTD approved the UM18 in Submaximus.

You don't necessarily need horn subs for upper sensitivity. Going for a more efficient pro woofer would do that too. I'd look at the VBSS design, or build something custom using a good pro 18. Horns can't necessarily play to 200 Hz though. Tapped horns like the GJALLARHORN fall apart up top, and even a FLH like the Submaximus will be limited by the driver, if you use a large coil, high xmax, high inductance home theater driver.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Far be it from me to discourage anyone from adding more subs, but I thought that the EQ question was spot on. And I didn't really understand the answer that everything was set for 20Hz and down. I'm not sure how you would do that, but if you did, then that would be part of the problem. I assume that the frequency range your friend is describing is the mid-bass range from about 50Hz to 100Hz. Other than the LFE channel which goes up to 120Hz, it is unlikely that the subs would be affecting much above about 80Hz or so, assuming crossovers are set to the nominal standard of 80Hz.

I have two thoughts. First, your friend could try setting a 60Hz crossover to his Heresy's, and using the bass tone control to add some additional mid-bass punch that way. Second, most people boost the bass on their subs after calibrating with an AVR. The average boost, or house curve as referred to earlier, would probably be about 3 to 6db, but some people boost much more than that.

Given the two subs flanking the MLP, with another up front, it is unlikely that localization would be an issue. So, he could also try going in the opposite direction and raise the crossover on the fronts and center. Boosting the subs would be the key to making that work, too. It's hard to know which would be better until he tried. If he added a miniDSP (much cheaper than another sub, and potentially very helpful in any case) your friend could shape the house curve to emphasize certain portions of the frequency range.

There is certainly nothing wrong with continuing to add subs, but I am really not sure that he is maximizing the resources he currently has available to him. :)

Regards,
Mike

Yep he did use REW and EQ the room. I was just as confused when he was explaining what he wanted. If we are watching a movie during an intense "bass" explosion scene etc. The SPL meter is only hitting 80db. My guess is that he wants "louder" bass. The sub 20hz bass gives a good shake to the riser ie "Vibration, and feeling" the bass.


I think what he wants is bass that is louder db. Im not sure if he can do that by changing his EQ settings. He's using Inukes with DSP. From the best I can understand he wants his meter to show above 100db on his SPL meter. Think of it as using bookshelves for fronts then upgrading to full size towers. Obviously the towers will play much louder. Does that analogy make sense? I was going to suggest another ported box but that will not solve the problem. Perhaps he can EQ his Inuke and 18" Cyclops, but I still don't think it will play above 80db. I could be wrong?
This first thing I thought of was a Horn sub.
Honestly, that may not be the best solution, would using a different brand 18" and ported sub be just as good or able to play "louder" If he added a UM-18 or HST-18 or UXL-18 in a ported box, will it play over 100db?
Currently the bass is tight, smooth, and rattles the room but its not LOUD. It doesn't have that "shock" value.
*** Does that make more sense***


http://www.qsc.com/cinema/products/loudspeakers/subwoofers/ Would a Full size Marty or similar sized Ported Sub have the same specs as these? I'm not sure if Theaters use Horn subs....I thought those were mainly for Concerts.


http://www.qsc.com/cinema/products/loudspeakers/subwoofers/ With dual drivers they hit 135db and up
 

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Yep he did use REW and EQ the room. I was just as confused when he was explaining what he wanted. If we are watching a movie during an intense "bass" explosion scene etc. The SPL meter is only hitting 80db. My guess is that he wants "louder" bass. The sub 20hz bass gives a good shake to the riser ie "Vibration, and feeling" the bass.


I think what he wants is bass that is louder db. Im not sure if he can do that by changing his EQ settings. He's using Inukes with DSP. From the best I can understand he wants his meter to show above 100db on his SPL meter. Think of it as using bookshelves for fronts then upgrading to full size towers. Obviously the towers will play much louder. Does that analogy make sense? I was going to suggest another ported box but that will not solve the problem. Perhaps he can EQ his Inuke and 18" Cyclops, but I still don't think it will play above 80db. I could be wrong?
This first thing I thought of was a Horn sub.
Honestly, that may not be the best solution, would using a different brand 18" and ported sub be just as good or able to play "louder" If he added a UM-18 or HST-18 or UXL-18 in a ported box, will it play over 100db?
Currently the bass is tight, smooth, and rattles the room but its not LOUD. It doesn't have that "shock" value.
*** Does that make more sense***


http://www.qsc.com/cinema/products/loudspeakers/subwoofers/ Would a Full size Marty or similar sized Ported Sub have the same specs as these? I'm not sure if Theaters use Horn subs....I thought those were mainly for Concerts.
Everything you are saying makes sense to me, but if it is more volume he is after, then there should certainly be a way to achieve it. If the subs don't have gain controls that enable him to play them at a louder SPL, he should still have that ability through his AVR, using the sub trim level.

I am actually in a somewhat similar situation. I don't usually like to watch movies at more than about -12 MV, which is an average volume of less than 80db (about 75 or 76db in my system). But I like for my subs to be much louder than that, so I boost them by about 12db, or so. If he wants the subs to play louder, while keeping the rest of the system where it is, he just needs to boost the volume on the subs.

Although nearly everyone uses a 75db test tone to calibrate a system, relatively few leave the subs set that low. It takes more volume to appreciate low frequency sounds than it does for higher frequencies (Fletcher-Munson curves). Not everyone is familiar with the principle, but most of us get there intuitively anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Everything you are saying makes sense to me, but if it is more volume he is after, then there should certainly be a way to achieve it. If the subs don't have gain controls that enable him to play them at a louder SPL, he should still have that ability through his AVR, using the sub trim level.

I am actually in a somewhat similar situation. I don't usually like to watch movies at more than about -12 MV, which is an average volume of less than 80db (about 75 or 76db in my system). But I like for my subs to be much louder than that, so I boost them by about 12db, or so. If he wants the subs to play louder, while keeping the rest of the system where it is, he just needs to boost the volume on the subs.

Although nearly everyone uses a 75db test tone to calibrate a system, relatively few leave the subs set that low. It takes more volume to appreciate low frequency sounds than it does for higher frequencies (Fletcher-Munson curves). Not everyone is familiar with the principle, but most of us get there intuitively anyway.
Yes, that is the problem. He doesn't want the main speakers blowing everyone away. Especially since the Klipsch can sound bright but he wants his Bass louder.


Can he simply add a 2nd ported sub and increase the db on those or should he build a dual ported box? He just sent me this link. They use dual 18's to achieve 130db+. What drivers can do this? Not sure an UM-18 will play that loud. What about Eminence or B&C or SI-DS4?
Should we try adding EQ within the Inuke DSP settings?
This is beyond my knowledge. I know a little but not about fixing this..
 

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Which drivers is your friend currently using ? And how big is his room? Using 3 18's already and can't achieve morw than 80db of bass....
This throws up some HUGE RED FLAGS to me..
 
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Yes, that is the problem. He doesn't want the main speakers blowing everyone away. Especially since the Klipsch can sound bright but he wants his Bass louder.


Can he simply add a 2nd ported sub and increase the db on those or should he build a dual ported box? He just sent me this link. They use dual 18's to achieve 130db+. What drivers can do this? Not sure an UM-18 will play that loud. What about Eminence or B&C or SI-DS4?
Should we try adding EQ within the Inuke DSP settings?
This is beyond my knowledge. I know a little but not about fixing this..
Which drivers is your friend currently using ? And how big is his room? Using 3 18's already and can't achieve morw than 80db of bass....
This throws up some HUGE RED FLAGS to me..
There still seems like a disconnect in what is being said here. Three 18" subs should certainly be able to produce reasonable volumes in a 3600 cu ft room. Sure, your friend can build another ported sub, capable of achieving 130db at certain frequencies. But then if he continues to play that sub at 75db, how will that help? He simply needs to turn up the volume on his existing subs. Only if doing that fails to give him the impact and SPL he is looking for should he explore augmenting his system with additional subs.

It's kind of like having a Ferrari, only driving it at 55 MPH, and then complaining that he needs a more powerful sports car because he just isn't getting the sensation of speed he was expecting. First try increasing the volume on the subs to a level that gives him the sensation he wants, and then only if that fails, add more subs.
 

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Without knowing more about the situation, I'll second what mthomas is saying: Just turn the subs up louder. Data-bass tested the UM18 and for the burst test, in a sealed 4CF cabinet, it can make 128.6 dB of volume at 20 Hz at 2 meters. Link: http://www.data-bass.com/data?page=system&id=116&mset=128 The UM18 can make 80 dB at 20 Hz with only a couple watts of power. If you're only getting 80 dB, turn it up louder. Which amplifiers does your friend have on which subs? Hopefully a pair of NU6000DSPs? Which signal lights on the amps are blinking during the loudest scenes? Any of them? It's basically okay to set the gain on the amps so that during the loudest scenes, the red clip light is just being tickled.
 

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Without knowing more about the situation, I'll second what mthomas is saying: Just turn the subs up louder. Data-bass tested the UM18 and for the burst test, in a sealed 4CF cabinet, it can make 128.6 dB of volume at 20 Hz at 2 meters. Link: http://www.data-bass.com/data?page=system&id=116&mset=128 The UM18 can make 80 dB at 20 Hz with only a couple watts of power. If you're only getting 80 dB, turn it up louder. Which amplifiers does your friend have on which subs? Hopefully a pair of NU6000DSPs? Which signal lights on the amps are blinking during the loudest scenes? Any of them? It's basically okay to set the gain on the amps so that during the loudest scenes, the red clip light is just being tickled.

104.9db at 20hz.


128.6db at 20hz is the all time high on the site (MAUL).
 

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So, my friend is driving me nuts. He's not completely satisfied with the bass from his ported 18" sub (cyclops).
...

the si ht18 driver isn't really the best choice for the Cyclops sub. some of the comments about "movie bass" vs "music bass" seem a little backwards too--there isn't really anything in music that is under 20hz except in a handful of tracks.


as others have indicated, some simple measurements may provide clues as to what is going on.


have him play some test tones and measure the output. without knowing what he has, any recommendations will be kind of blind guessing.


where is his seating position located in the room?
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I told him to double check ALL his settings. He said when he boosted the Inuke DSP all the way up his drivers bottomed out. Well duh.. lol I'll have to stop over and see what he's doing. The plan for the Cyclops was to use UXL-18, he said he got the SI-18 from someone else.
He is using an Inuke 3000dsp with the Cyclops and Inuke 6000dsp for his sealed UM-18's. The SI-18 are only good for about 600wpc a little more won't hurt but its not the same as a woofer that can run with 2000 watts. It's probably not playing loud because it can't or his settings are being used for bass 20hz and lower.
He's not a big fan of REW, it can be used to trouble shoot problem area's but he prefers his ears instead. Not many people would buy a speaker based on spec's alone which is why we audition before we buy. Specs can look awesome on paper and still sound like crap in your home.


According to Data.bass the UM-18 should hit 104.9 @20 hz and goes up to 125.9 @125hz so it's more than likely a setup issue. Especially if he used his SPL Meter and configured everything under 80Db. I'm sure Audyssey turned everything down and he forgot to add db in the settings menu.


Without seeing it myself and relaying through the forum it's a lot of guess work. Either that or he just wants to build a horn because its huge and looks cool. lol
 

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An NU6000DSP can not bottom out a UM18 in a 4CF sealed enclosure, unless the enclosure is somewhat leaky. Probably can't bottom out the HT18 either if it has a proper HPF in place, which does have room for error.

REW has nothing to do with specs. The whole point is to objectively identify why his system sounds like crap. :) And then formulate a plan to fix it.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
OMG, Just finished talking to my friend. Now it make's perfect sense why HE wasn't satisfied with his performance. He setup his Cyclops on his Inuke 3000dsp by logging into his Inuke 6000dsp. His goal was to copy the settings. (not sure what he was thinking). When he logged into his Inuke he lost ALL his original settings.


He forgot to save the original settings.
I wish I had asked that question first, but I assumed (yep I know) he saved them. UGH..


Guess on a positive note, he almost has me talked into a horn sub to be used in the garage and outdoor theater. (45 acres, no neighbors) :) Maybe I'll build it just for fun. Being retired is boring, always looking for things to take up some. If I had a wood CNC I would cut flatpacks for people.


As always, thanks for all the replies. My brain was turning to jelly but after reading everyone's replies I had him log into his Inuke and Bingo.....
 

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log into his Inuke and Bingo.....
But... can I still suggest he build 8 460's powered with an FP14k? :D

Not trusting measurements, that is RICH...
Whenever I hear something, and check, the measurements have never been wrong. Not once in 20 years.

There has only been one case where measurements have been wrong: The hubble lens.
and the measurements weren't wrong, the humans were... :p

Last time I checked 100lbs was still 100lbs, and 100ft was still 100ft.
 

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But... can I still suggest he build 8 460's powered with an FP14k? :D

Not trusting measurements, that is RICH...
Whenever I hear something, and check, the measurements have never been wrong. Not once in 20 years.

There has only been one case where measurements have been wrong: The hubble lens.
and the measurements weren't wrong, the humans were... :p

Last time I checked 100lbs was still 100lbs, and 100ft was still 100ft.

He's old school. All car audio, hasn't really done anything in 20 years. :mad: He never used anything except a Radio Shack SPL. It still wouldn't surprise me if he wants Louder bass. Not sure if he will go for 8 more subs, he as wife... lol
Would the 460's be used as MBM's? I can almost hear him saying, the bass isn't hitting hard enough. UGH (Above 50hz)
Trying to get it through his head Car audio is NOT home audio. He's at the stage where he knows just enough to be dangerous.
 
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