2013 Subwoofer Roundup: 6 Subs For $500 Or Less

Discussion in 'Subwoofers' started by admin, Sep 12, 2013.

  1. admin Audioholics Robot Staff Member

    admin
    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2004
    Messages:
    172
    Likes Received:
    1,615
    $500 is a pretty tough price point to find a subwoofer that doesn't make huge compromises in both performance and aesthetics. However, we've found six subs that do their best balancing act to provide good value. Each one offers a unique mix of traits that may suit you better than the others, but we feel all six represent the cream of the crop at this level. Keep reading to see who our contenders are and what they bring to the table.
    [​IMG]

    Discuss 2013 Subwoofer Roundup: 6 Subs for $500 or Less

    What are your favorites in this price range?
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 12, 2013
    • Like Like x 5
  2. NewHTbuyer Audioholic

    NewHTbuyer
    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2008
    Messages:
    163
    Likes Received:
    56
    I guess I will be the first to say it....too bad the Rythmik LV12 R was just a bit too pricey to be included in this group. I have a feeling most shoppers would consider it if they were look at around $500 and wanted a sub for a big room for HT use.
  3. gene Audioholics Master Chief Administrator

    gene
    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2002
    Messages:
    7,817
    Likes Received:
    3,410
    Location:
    Florida
    Rythmik had a $500 model but its listed as discontinued on their website so we didn't include it.
    gene,
  4. Steve81 Audioholics 5-O

    Steve81
    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2012
    Messages:
    4,026
    Likes Received:
    2,060
    Location:
    38.89°N, 77.01°W
    Gotta draw the line somewhere unfortunately; once you get above the $500 mark, things get pretty interesting with additional contenders like the Hsu VTF-2 and Outlaw LFM-1 Plus; even the LFM-1 EX can be had for less than $750 shipped normally, and is a screaming bargain on sale.
  5. afterlife2 Audioholic Spartan

    afterlife2
    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2011
    Messages:
    5,502
    Likes Received:
    1,819
    Location:
    In a Small Space.
    I wantS PB1000.:cool:
  6. NewHTbuyer Audioholic

    NewHTbuyer
    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2008
    Messages:
    163
    Likes Received:
    56
    Its odd because I know they replaced the FV12 but the new LV12R is not listed dander their products page. I can see it on the Ascend website though. I guess Rythmik needs to do a better job of website maintenance. I think it runs for $589 with free shipping.

    Still, thanks for the nice comparison chart and summary. You are right,you have to draw the line price wise at some point.
  7. Pyrrho Audioholic Ninja

    Pyrrho
    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2005
    Messages:
    3,699
    Likes Received:
    979
    If I were buying one, I would go with the SVS PB-1000. I like really deep bass, and it is the only one listed that is really capable of 20 Hz performance. Add to that the best warranty, and likely the best customer service (or at least, among the best), and it seems like the obvious choice to me. Of course, for someone who wants loud more than deep, another choice might be better, but for me, that would be the one if I were buying a $500 subwoofer.
    • Like Like x 1
  8. BoredSysAdmin Audioholic Warlord

    BoredSysAdmin
    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2007
    Messages:
    9,988
    Likes Received:
    3,305
    Location:
    New Joisey
  9. shadyJ Audioholic Ninja

    shadyJ
    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2006
    Messages:
    3,562
    Likes Received:
    1,083
    I would take the PA-150 at $500. The PB1000 can give you 20 Hz bass, but not enough to make a difference. For both movies and music the PA-150 will be a more impressive sub, the bigtime mid bass dynamics are going to be far more practical than deep bass that can barely be heard.
    • Like Like x 2
  10. Steve81 Audioholics 5-O

    Steve81
    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2012
    Messages:
    4,026
    Likes Received:
    2,060
    Location:
    38.89°N, 77.01°W
    Assuming the 99.8dB @ 20Hz figure holds true, that's only 4.3dB off the Hsu VTF-15H and 2.3dB off the Outlaw LFM-1 EX in deep tune; I'd hardly call that "not enough to make a difference".
    • Like Like x 2
  11. AcuDefTechGuy Audioholic Slumlord

    AcuDefTechGuy
    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    Messages:
    19,583
    Likes Received:
    4,306
    Location:
    Oklahoma City
    I think most of the bass sound we hear is from 28Hz & up, though. Frequencies around 20Hz are more felt than heard.
    So I would personally want a sub that can give me good SPL from 30Hz-120Hz.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 19, 2014
    • Like Like x 2
  12. TheStalker Banned

    TheStalker
    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2013
    Messages:
    171
    Likes Received:
    21
    But that 20Hz nicely pressurizes the room and gives a very awesome sense of space. Even if it is barely audible, or at lower output. Without it, the soundtrack is somewhat lifeless.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 19, 2014
  13. AcuDefTechGuy Audioholic Slumlord

    AcuDefTechGuy
    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    Messages:
    19,583
    Likes Received:
    4,306
    Location:
    Oklahoma City
    That's one opinion. I disagree. Bass from 32Hz-125Hz can significantly pressurize the room and give you all the life you need.
    I agree with Shady. The PA-150 is what I would get.

    [TABLE="class: spl_chart"]
    <tbody>[TR="class: row_a"]
    [TD]SPL @ 2m 20/25/32/40/50/63/80/100/125Hz: 93.6
    [/TD]
    [TD]98.6
    [/TD]
    [TD]105.4
    [/TD]
    [TD]109.3
    [/TD]
    [TD]114.4
    [/TD]
    [TD]118
    [/TD]
    [TD]117.8
    [/TD]
    [TD]116.9
    [/TD]
    [TD]116dB
    [/TD]
    [/TR]
    </tbody>[/TABLE]
  14. TheStalker Banned

    TheStalker
    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2013
    Messages:
    171
    Likes Received:
    21
    That's somewhat misleading, because you have a 19dB+ difference between 20Hz and 50Hz. If you match the midbass output to you main front LR, then 20Hz will practically be nonexistent. If you try to compensate by raising the gain on the subwoofer then your midbass will be overbearing. Don't get me wrong, this is a very nice midbass unit, but I wouldn't exactly call it a true subwoofer.
  15. Pyrrho Audioholic Ninja

    Pyrrho
    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2005
    Messages:
    3,699
    Likes Received:
    979
    I would probably find that more convincing if I did not go from a subwoofer that was solid down to 28 Hz to subwoofers solid down to about 15 Hz. I did not need the extra volume capability that I have gained with my pair of SVS Ultras, but I do like the significantly increased depth of the bass. Whether the advantage is from feeling or sound or both, it is still a very nice advantage. I like it for music and movies. Since I listen to classical music, including pipe organ music, that depth is necessary for the proper reproduction of some of the music to which I listen. Obviously, when listening to some music, like a solo violin, it is irrelevant.

    But, as I stated in my first post in this thread,

    Of course, for someone who wants loud more than deep, another choice might be better...

    Different people have different priorities. There is nothing wrong with that.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 19, 2014
    • Like Like x 2
  16. lsiberian Audioholic Overlord

    lsiberian
    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2008
    Messages:
    12,173
    Likes Received:
    3,155
    Location:
    On A Bridge in Fort Worth
    I had no idea. ;)
  17. shadyJ Audioholic Ninja

    shadyJ
    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2006
    Messages:
    3,562
    Likes Received:
    1,083
    100 dB at 20 Hz isn't really that much. Let us refer to the equal loudness curve:
    [​IMG]
    • Like Like x 3
  18. Steve81 Audioholics 5-O

    Steve81
    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2012
    Messages:
    4,026
    Likes Received:
    2,060
    Location:
    38.89°N, 77.01°W
    1. It's 100dB @ 2 meters ground plane; in room may see a substantial boost beyond that.
    2. While your ears aren't particularly sensitive at 20Hz, you will also feel that kind of output.
    • Like Like x 2
  19. theJman Audioholic Chief

    theJman
    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2011
    Messages:
    840
    Likes Received:
    261
    Location:
    New Joisey
    Based upon my time with the PB1000 I would say it's a pretty solid performer when you get down to infrasonic levels. It's limiter is nearly bullet-proof too, so it's very hard to trip up. The LV12R is still my favorite in the "low cost" category, but it's very hard to find fault with the PB1000.
    • Like Like x 5
  20. TheStalker Banned

    TheStalker
    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2013
    Messages:
    171
    Likes Received:
    21
    This is exactly the reason why most flat measuring speakers sound hard and unnatural.

Share This Page

  • EMPTek.com
  • BlueJeansCable.com
  • SVS Sound Subwoofers
  • Experience the Martin Logan Montis
  • CEDIA