I have my living room (3000 cubic ft) housing XPA-5, B&W 683 mains and 685 center with ERD's as surrounds. I have decided to add a sub woofer to my system and have narrower-ed down to the following three. Xref10, Xref12 (both value for money) and B&W ASW610 (recent HiFi award + match for my existing B&W setup).
I want to hear tight bass for 2 channel music and couch shaking thunderous bass for HT.
Considering my room size and requirements, which sub can give the best performance.
I originally purchased the B & W ASW 600 with my 600 series 3 speakers. I was satisfied with this sub for a number of years until the upgrade bug bit. My first was the XPA-5 driving my mains and surrounds and this was a nice SQ improvement, however I still did not have the bass I wanted. I purchased the X-ref 12 and it is a tremendous improvement over (actually in addition) to my ASW 600. The two together work nicely however replacing the B & W is still on my priority list. An additional X-Ref 12 would be nice, but after listening and reading many reviews on subs i really think if someone wants deep bass they really need to look else where. The X-Ref 12 is very musical so I am fine with it for that purpose, however I still feel I am missing out during movies. I was advised to upgrade my processor so I could get better bass management and will do so in the near (Denon 4311) or distant (XMC-1) future. All of this is to give you an idea, since our speakers are similar, of where you might want to go with your decision. As Hemster mentioned, an SVS would be really nice, along with the Rythmik or Hsu but the real winner at least from reviews I have read is the JL Fathom series of subs.
Panasonic - VIERA / TCP55VT50
Emotiva XPA-5 X-Ref 12 sub
Oppo BDP 93
B & W N804 Mains
B & W 603 Rear surrounds
B & W LCR 600 Center
ASW 600 sub
B & W CDS6 S3 rear heights
Post by Dr. Feel Good on Feb 15, 2012 10:25:47 GMT -5
Just sharing....I am sub hunting too, I managed to put together an Orb system from the members here (10 orbs total so far). now I need a sub, one that is both musical and good for movies and doesn't cost much :). Does anyone have a X-Ref 10/12 for sale or B&W ....or maybe even a Valodyne ....ahh..sigh.
Dac: XDA -1; CD: Rotel 991ae ; Pre: USP-1; Amp: 2 x Carver A 500x (Mono@ 800wp); Spkr: DCM Time Window 7 signature series; Sub: B&W ASW 700; Pwr: Monster HTS 3600; Cables: Monster & MAC
The XRef 12 would give you a LOT more bang for about the same bucks as that B&W.
Inaudible is inaudible and you don't get extra brownie points for making it twice as inaudible as another solution. - Kevin Haskins
Sometimes I wonder if the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on, or by imbeciles who mean it. - Mark Twain
Post by Chuckienut on Feb 21, 2012 17:38:55 GMT -5
"I want to hear tight bass for 2 channel music and couch shaking thunderous bass for HT."
You are not going to hear couch shaking thunderous bass below 25HZ with any of those subs. I think you are way underestimating the sub needed for that room. Yes, there are folks with subs that are very loud in the 30-80Hz range and they if never having heard a true 20Hz and below sub think their sub is awesome because many times they are hearing the harmonic tone, for example the 40Hz tone of a fundamental tone at 20Hz.
The Emo X-Ref 12 sub, SVS SB12-NSD and B&W ASW610XP will all be similar in output, in the same ballpark. I don't know if there is any difference between the 610 and 610XP as the specs look identical. Note these are all fairly small subs in the 15" cube range and will not perform like a large enclosure sub for the lower bass in movies. The Emo X-Ref 12 sub is super for music and good for HT, however, I would go for two of them in your room if possible. My choice would be the X-REf 12 due to the dual parametric EQ, a great feature. The B&W is British and mostly sold thru B&M stores and is therefore way overpriced compared to the Emo sub and way down in 3rd place on my list. Note, there is no advantage to have a sub from the same brand as the speakers. The SVS SB12-NSD would be my second choice, only because it lacks the built-in EQ's (unless I missed something) and there is no review out yet with FR measurements. Regardless the SVS is way above the B&W in my list, if for any reason you decided against the Emo.
If you really want thunderous low bass then I would go for a large enclosure sub if you have the space in that big room. The SVS PB12-NSD would be the minimum from SVS. Better would be the PB12-Plus or the PB13-Ultra. Rythmik has the FV15-HP and HSU has the best buy VTF-15H at $879 if you like the appearance. Other best buys are the Outlaw LFM-1EX at $649. Note the weight and enclosure size as these are much larger and heavier subs. Not all of them have a built-in EQ and you would need to EQ if necessary in the pre-pro or an external EQ.
Here are some figures for comparison from Audioholics just to give you an idea of the frequency performance.
Freq ....... Emo X-Ref 12 ...... B&W ASW 610XP ..........PB 12-NSD ............HSU VTF-15H 20 Hz .......... 83 dB ................. 85.1 dB .................. 110.2 dB ............... 114.8 dB 25 Hz .......... 95 dB ................. 90.0 dB .................. 110.8 dB ............... 116.7 dB 30 Hz .......... 100 dB ............... 96.1 dB .................. 112.1 dB ............... 121.6 dB 40 Hz .......... 103 dB ............... 101.5 dB ................ 119.0 dB ............... 120.0 dB 50 Hz .......... 105 dB ............... 105.9 dB ................ 120.3 dB ............... 121.2 dB
Last Edit: Feb 21, 2012 17:42:09 GMT -5 by Chuckienut
Sir Chuck: All I'm try to say that in my convoluted mind, when we compare subs by their woofer size, we are talking about sheer performance. When we compare prices, we are comparing value. The HSU VTF-15 compares with the X/REF-12 by value. Not performance. But then, there is the price/performance value which addresses $$$/SPL. Again, after a few merlots, this might all be in my mind. So, just move on!
Emotiva: UMC-1 (7.04.00.19) Emotiva: U-12 Sub x 2 Emotiva: UPA-7 Emotiva: UPA-2 Emotiva: X-Series I/C Impact Acoustic 12/2 S/Cable Def Tech: ProCinema 1000 x 6 Def Tech: ProCenter 2000 Sony: BDP-S550 Sony: CDP-CX355 Technics: SL-QD33 T/T Samsung: LN46A850 LCD APC: AV H15 Pwr Conditioner DSPeaker: AntiMode 8033S Acer: Aspire 5551-4200 Next: Emo: X/REF-15 Sub x 2 Emo: XMC-1
Post by Chuckienut on Feb 21, 2012 20:57:45 GMT -5
OK, now I see ( ???) ;D.
Actually my post was just to recommend the X-Ref 12 sub but also to make sure the OP knew that for the deepest earth shaking bass he needed a large enclosure sub among which the Outlaw and HSU seem to be best buys.
The only thing my doctor will let me drink from grapes is grape juice.
Chuck: If I go for 2 Xref12's, other than base uniformity, will it increase the SPL? Can I reach any where near 12'' ported subs performance? For me music is more important than movies (80/20). Having said that, I don't mind having a good performance (ground shaking) HT experience
Following link is my living space with HT. Hope you can suggest placement as well. Thanks.
Adding a second identical sub will theoretically add up to 6dB of increased output. I include the quote from HSU below because many times you will hear the answer given as 3dB rather than 6dB. It should help to even out the low bass coverage in a large room and also cancel out the effects of standing waves and room modes. In your room unless you have a single listening chair this will be desirable. You will get more output at the lower frequencies but it will still be relative to the higher frequencies. Perhaps other members can jump in here about the lower bass frequency boost versus the higher bass boost and if it is in fact relatively the same increase.
Two X-Ref 12 subs might give you really super bass for music and very good for movies, still not the real low bass, but that is the trade off.
"The ULS-15 DualDrive is two ULS-15s, at a bargain price. When you have two, you get up to 6 dB (4 times) more output than a single ULS-15."
"Are two subs better than one??? The answer to this question is typically yes, assuming you’re comparing one vs. two subs of the exact same brand and model #. In almost all circumstances, installing multiple subwoofers in your theater room will yield significantly better and smoother bass response across a wider listening area due to modal averaging."
"When you’re getting ready to pick out a new subwoofer for your home theater system, I’d highly encourage you to instead choose two subs. The benefits of multi-subwoofer systems are well documented and proven. The only circumstance where I would choose a single sub over dual subs is if your budget and placement are constrained and you listen at a single position only. If budget is a factor, then I’d recommend spending a little less on that first sub now with the intent of adding an identical second sub at a later date. If size is a factor when choosing between adding one or two subwoofers to your system, consider doing what I did and go with two smaller but potent subwoofers. If it’s a hard sell for your wife on getting two subs, just tell her you’re doing it for the benefit of her mother."
I just looked at your photo. I've seen that before in one of your posts. That gives a different picture (pun intended). You really have about a 1620 cu ft area sitting crosswise at the end of and open to the rest of a long room, about 2700 cu ft total. There is very little sound absorbing material.
I think you are going to be fine with the two X-REf 12 subs, in fact they might sound great.
Placement of two Subwoofers: You need to place the two subs properly for the best bass performance.
#1 ... Put one in the middle of the right wall and one in the middle of the left wall. #2 ... Put one in the middle of the front wall and one in the middle of the rear wall. #3 ... Put one sub in the front right corner and the other sub in the front left corner. #4 ... Put one in the front corner and the other in the corner in the the rear of the room. (I would go with #2, #3 or #4)
In all cases, move the subs at least a foot away from the walls and adjust their levels so that one does not overpower the other.
Post by Chuckienut on Feb 23, 2012 22:21:28 GMT -5
Ajimon, I went back and looked at all your posts and photos. I understand you are trying to keep your costs down.
Hopefully other members will offer more input. I think it is important to take a look at your photo above. Your room is not easy and is obviously in need of some sound absorption treatment. Getting rid of the Def Tech's with the built-in subs should have helped a lot.
My first question would be, is it fairly equal in costs between ordering one X-Ref 12 sub now and another a few months later? Or is ordering the two at the same time a big savings in the shipping and customs charges to Dubai versus two separate shipments? I ask this because my thought is perhaps to order one of the X-Ref 12 and a second one later if you feel you need it (when there is a sale). Looking at your room, one sub might possibly be OK if you place it near one of the corners, the front or rear corner to the side of the window. If the choice, budget wise, was between one X-Ref 12 and two X-Ref 10's I would go for the two 10's. I think one X-ref 12 might be OK in that room if (that's a big if) you can locate a place for the sub that offers good lower bass spread to all listening positions.
Before I forget, whatever sub you get I would highly recommend you use the "small" mode setting in the pre-pro for all five of your speakers. This "small" versus "large" (full range) has nothing to do with the size of the main speakers but whether you use bass management to combine and send the bass below 80Hz along with the LFE bass to the sub. The bass below 80Hz is re-directed from the 5 speakers, combined with the LFE track and sent to the sub. In the small mode (bass management on), the mains get the bass above 80Hz and the sub gets the bass below 80Hz. This keeps the bass from 80Hz and down being duplicated by both the L&R mains and the sub which usually causes problems including boomy bass among other issues. (I'm not familiar specifically with the UMC-1 and it might be slightly different in bass management settings)
Sorry I can't give you a more definitive answer on which sub(s) is the best choice for you. At best the perfect sub for your room within your budget is an educated guess until you actually hook one or two up. Good luck.
Last Edit: Feb 23, 2012 22:28:51 GMT -5 by Chuckienut
As per quote received from emo which includes shipping, buying two subs at the same time is not going to save me any extra money. The quote for two is almost double the cost of one. As suggested, I'm willing to wait to get the 2nd sub (if required).
I always had boomy effect with deftechs, but after having replaced them with B&W683, bass is tight and more to my liking. Will the boomy effect come back if I place the sub as suggested by you? I read a lot that keeping the sub woofer near corner can increase the boom feel. I'm sure you are more experienced than me in the field of interest and would definitely like to hear your opinion.
There is no "small" and "large" bass management setting on UMC-1. I mean, you can individually setup the Hz number for all channels on UMC-1.