Fixing the Bass in Your Room - Adding a Powered Subwoofer

gene

gene

Audioholics Master Chief
Administrator
Every once in a while, we have to move our AV systems to a new room. Sometimes, it’s because the system has outgrown its current home and it requires a larger space. Other times, it’s because the current room is needed for another purpose. But acoustically, things don’t always work out in the new room exactly the way you thought they would, despite your best plans. In this editorial, I show how I overcame acoustical challenges by fixing the bass. Short answer, adding a powered subwoofer did the trick even though my main speakers are fullrange and very bass capable. But there are some tricks we discuss when trying to best match up a pair of bass capable speakers with a powered sub.

system.jpg


Read: Fixing my The Bass in my Room by Adding a Powered Sub
 
Gmoney

Gmoney

Audioholic Ninja
Heres one, is it better or does it even matter, to put your Sub/Sub's between your L/R mains or outside of your L/R mains. Also which setting for "Music" only would one use if you have full range towers, full setting or small setting. . I see a Lot of noobs asking this all the time so what say you AH memebers.:)
 
B

Big-Q

Audiophyte
Thanks for sharing. A great read. I will never have the big room bass problem in our current home as we do not have a great room like that. Still, great advice if that is your home.
 
Eppie

Eppie

Audioholic
Heres one, is it better or does it even matter, to put your Sub/Sub's between your L/R mains or outside of your L/R mains. Also which setting for "Music" only would one use if you have full range towers, full setting or small setting. . I see a Lot of noobs asking this all the time so what say you AH memebers.:)
There was a recent Yuotube video on the Audioholics channel discussing Audessey room correction and they talked about sub placement (about 12 minutes in). In general, the subs worked best when either in the middle of the wall or in the corners (or 1/4 way in if other positions are not possible). That's only a starting point, of course, but I would assume that the same theory for home theater would apply to music setups.

I'm still a noob when it comes to sub tuning but in general it makes sense to set the mains to small, even with full towers. If we ignore the top end price range and look at typical speaker performance, your mans might go down to 40Hz or 35Hz but not down to 20Hz. If set to full, you are potentially sending signals to the amps and speakers that the speakers can not reproduce. That's wasted power from the amp and possible negative artifacts from the speakers. You are also limited in not being able to move the mains around to change bass response in the room, while the sub can be moved or doubled with another, so best to leave those lower frequencies to the sub(s) even with music. That's my understanding anyway.
 
Last edited:
Pogre

Pogre

Audioholic Overlord
Hmm... I just got a third subwoofer. Tagging this thread for later.
 
Benni777

Benni777

Junior Audioholic
Gene, you got to update that wall paper man!!! just saying...
 
S

shadyJ

Speaker of the House
Another good article, Steve! By the way, SVS does cut out handles in their boxes, and even puts plastic rings around the cutouts, but mostly with the ported models and heavier sealed subs- I don't think they envisioned anyone having problems with this tiny sealed sub; time to hit the gym, buddy! ;)
 
M

Mr._Clark

Audioholic Chief
While I commend Steve for using his wife's request to swap the two systems as an excuse to get both a new TV and a new sub, he missed a golden opportunity to get another pair of the Legacy towers! ;)("Honey, I really like the idea of having the tower speakers in the family room, but it would be so much easier to just buy another pair!")
 
J

jeffca

Audioholic Intern
Hey, if spending this much on speakers for a TV and music system that is not ideally set up in the room and is acting like a glorified sound bar floats your boat, sure. It's your money to spend.

I think, though, that for your family room that you could have spent a fraction on your speakers and gotten 97% of the performance. The big reason is that the room isn't treated and seems to use drywall rather than wood. Untreated rooms don't sound great. Untreated rooms using drywall sound pretty awful.

Those Legacy speakers really do deserve better. Again, this is your problem not mine so have at it.

All things considered, though, I wouldn't consider this to be worthy off an article.
 
S

sfeinstein

Audiophyte
Thanks a lot, Mr._Clark ! Where were you two months ago when I really needed that suggestion??!!

--sf
 
P

pbarach1

Audioholic
It makes no sense to have those speakers against the wall. Pull them out a few feet and the sound will improve dramatically even if you do nothing else.
 
M

MDK210

Junior Audioholic
Heres one, is it better or does it even matter, to put your Sub/Sub's between your L/R mains or outside of your L/R mains. Also which setting for "Music" only would one use if you have full range towers, full setting or small setting. . I see a Lot of noobs asking this all the time so what say you AH memebers.:)
Doesn't matter unless you have a sub placed using the "crawl" method and it's often more dependent on your main speakers and how you position them. My speakers sound better 8-10ft apart and toe'd in as opposed to 4ft apart and straight on, the manufacturer also suggest this. One setup allows for my sub(s) to be inside the speakers and one forces me to place them outside. I don't use the crawl method and prefer an aesthetic appearance vs optimal performance.

If you have a sub then you go small on the towers regardless of music/movies.
 
Pogre

Pogre

Audioholic Overlord
Heres one, is it better or does it even matter, to put your Sub/Sub's between your L/R mains or outside of your L/R mains. Also which setting for "Music" only would one use if you have full range towers, full setting or small setting. . I see a Lot of noobs asking this all the time so what say you AH memebers.:)
Your room is in charge of where your sub's going to sound the best, and every time I see a noob ask about small or large settings with towers and subs we say to use the small setting and start with 80 hz crossover in most cases.
 
Gmoney

Gmoney

Audioholic Ninja
Your room is in charge of where your sub's going to sound the best, and every time I see a noob ask about small or large settings with towers and subs we say to use the small setting and start with 80 hz crossover in most cases.
You covered both Music use and HT use. Now how about just 2.1 use for music only use or just say a two channel setup with bass only Management for the Sub? Would you set the Sub at where your Towers or Bookshelf speakers start to roll off or would it be better to just leave setting in AVR to handle that bass management.
 
Pogre

Pogre

Audioholic Overlord
You covered both Music use and HT use. Now how about just 2.1 use for music only use or just say a two channel setup with bass only Management for the Sub? Would you set the Sub at where your Towers or Bookshelf speakers start to roll off or would it be better to just leave setting in AVR to handle that bass management.
I'd set it just like I said for 2.1 music only. Small setting, 80 hz crossover. Let the avr handle bass management. I'm listening to music that way right now.
 
Gmoney

Gmoney

Audioholic Ninja
I'd set it just like I said for 2.1 music only. Small setting, 80 hz crossover. Let the avr handle bass management. I'm listening to music that way right now.
You do have Tower speakers right? Those SVS Towers with that umm 10" or 12" driver mounted on side of the speaker. I myself run my mains at Full setting for 2.1 use. I then set my Sub at where my mains just start to roll down at. I set my sub trim at 0.5+ I than set my sub gain at about 12: 00 o'clock I than set Hz maxed out on the back of my Sub. I than use PEQ setttings and I start at 32 hz with a boost up. I'd have go to back into my settings on my V6A or my 7790 "black book" for more detail of my settings for 2.1 set for music only. Now remember Pogre, I gotta cheap really cheap Monoprice sub
 
Last edited:
Pogre

Pogre

Audioholic Overlord
You do have Tower speakers right? Those SVS Towers with that umm 10" or 12" driver mounted on side of the speaker. I myself run my mains at Full setting for 2.1 use. I then set my Sub at where my mains just start to roll down at. I set my sub trim at 0.5+ I than set my sub gain at about 12: 00 o'clock I than set Hz maxed out on the back of my Sub. I than use PEQ setttings and I start at 32 hz with a boost up. I'd have go back into my settings on my V6A or my 7790 for more detail of my settings for 2.1 set for music only. Now remember Pogre, I gotta cheap really cheap Monoprice sub
I get a much better, more linear bass response setting speakers to small and using a crossover. I'm +/- 2 dB from 16 to almost 200 hz.

04-09-21 final.jpg


That's about as good as I can get it. I have issues dialing it in that well with a lower crossover due to room modes. I have more flexibility with the subs.
 

newsletter
  • RBHsound.com
  • BlueJeansCable.com
  • SVS Sound Subwoofers
  • Experience the Martin Logan Montis
Top