Subwoofer advice: closed or ported?

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sakete

Audioholic
I want to get 1 or 2 subwoofers to complement my Revel F206 speakers. Currently running those speakers through a Yamaha RX-A2070 - am debating replacing it with a Denon x4800. The AVR sends the audio to a Purifi based power amp.

My second music setup consists of a RaspberryPi based music player (self-built) that has a high performing dac for dedicated music listening. This also sends audio to the same Purifi amp.

My use case is primarily music listening, and for now I’m looking at a 2.1 or 2.2 setup. But I may eventually buy a center and 2 surround speakers for 5.1 or 5.2.

What are the best subs to consider for primarily music and secondarily movies? I heard general you want closed for tighter bass with which pair well with music, and ported for deeper extension for movies.

Also, calibrating the subs with a Denon equipped with Dirac Live Bass Control shouldn’t be too hard. But, I’ll also need to figure out how to calibrate them for my music player - this player runs Volumio and can use convolution filters that I created in REW. But I’ve never done that for subwoofers, and I’ll need an external crossover (miniDSP?) as my media player only sends out a stereo pre-amp signal. Any ideas for that as well?
 
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shadyJ

Speaker of the House
Staff member
Some ported subs have very high sound quality. It really depends on the sub.
 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Seriously, I have no life.
Some ported subs have very high sound quality. It really depends on the sub.
Shady is right. There are good and bad designs of both. It comes down to total Q of the design. Marketers push for the lowest F3, which leads to higher than desirable Q.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Jedi
If size isn't an issue I'd go ported generally. I'd rather go with two subs generally as well. What's your budget?
 
S

sakete

Audioholic
If size isn't an issue I'd go ported generally. I'd rather go with two subs generally as well. What's your budget?
I want to spend as little as possible while still getting something good (so not necessarily low budget, but want a good brand and then whatever is good enough). And am looking at 12” subs, as I don’t want a ridiculously huge sub in my living room.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Jedi
I'd look at Hsu, Monolith and RSL perhaps. Ported boxes will be larger, do you have a max size of box in mind?
 
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sakete

Audioholic
I'd look at Hsu, Monolith and RSL perhaps. Ported boxes will be larger, do you have a max size of box in mind?
Not sure yet, I’ll probably soon move into a new place (still searching) and that’s where I’ll want a sub. Will depend on the living room layout.

But assuming it’ll need to be limited to a 12” sub, especially if I might spring for 2. Is Rhythmik also a brand worth considering? Or not anymore these days.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Jedi
Not sure yet, I’ll probably soon move into a new place (still searching) and that’s where I’ll want a sub. Will depend on the living room layout.

But assuming it’ll need to be limited to a 12” sub, especially if I might spring for 2. Is Rhythmik also a brand worth considering? Or not anymore these days.
Rythmik could be okay, but the servo thing is overrated IMHO.
 
S

sakete

Audioholic
So would something like a Hsu VTF2-MK5 fit the bill? How does plugging the ports affect sound and performance?
 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Seriously, I have no life.
So would something like a Hsu VTF2-MK5 fit the bill? How does plugging the ports affect sound and performance?
That is a good sub. Just leave both ports open. That is the optimal tuning.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Jedi
Yes, a nice sub. Plugging a port generally will reduce extension/performance.
 
Verdinut

Verdinut

Audioholic Spartan
Plugging one port will tune down the box frequency and also extend the low frequency performance rather than reducing it. But it will do it at the expense of some reduced bass output at some of the frequencies higher than that of the new box tuning. That might improve overall performance by reducing room gain bass boost in some situations.
 
S

sakete

Audioholic
Plugging one port will tune down the box frequency and also extend the low frequency performance rather than reducing it. But it will do it at the expense of some reduced bass output at some of the frequencies higher than that of the new box tuning. That might improve overall performance by reducing room gain bass boost in some situations.
The Hsu website shows that with one port open it extends to 16hz and with 2 ports open to 22hz.
 
davidscott

davidscott

Audioholic Ninja
How about 2 RSL SpeedWoofer 10es for $600? It's advertised on this site. If I hadn't recently purchased an ELAC 12-inch sub I'd be all over one of these.
 
Tankini

Tankini

Senior Audioholic
The Hsu website shows that with one port open it extends to 16hz and with 2 ports open to 22hz.
Doubt you could hear down to 16Hz, most People can't even hear below 30 Hz. 30 Hz is low. Not much going on at those frequencies, Special effects that's Mixed into movies by Sound engineers for movie use. An Oregon Etc.

"According to the search results, humans can hear sounds below 30 Hz, but the range is limited. The human ear perceives frequencies between 20 Hz (lowest pitch) to 20 kHz (highest pitch). Sounds below 20 Hz are qualified as infrasounds, although some animals, such as mole-rats or elephants, can hear them."

"Infrasounds are not audible to humans, but they can be felt through vibrations. For example, the sound of a low-flying aircraft or a distant thunderstorm can be felt as a vibration rather than heard as a sound."

Here is a chart, as you can see, Humans typically around 31 Hertz. It's for that reason I haven't spent 2-3k or more on them higher-end high dollar subs. 600 to 800 max on price speaking for myself. Plus at my age waste of money. TLSGuy aka Doc, who has extensive knowledge plus has rubbed shoulders with some well known doctors of audio has posted many comments on this very subject of what, basically is over kill on subs, the money that people spend on them. I know of one dude and I'm sure many more out there have 33" subs T-Rex Bass.

1719872023253.png
 
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TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Seriously, I have no life.
The Hsu website shows that with one port open it extends to 16hz and with 2 ports open to 22hz.
It will, but with lower quality bass. Stop chasing a low F3. That is fools gold and just about the least important spec of a subwoofer, no matter what marketers and useless MBAs would have you believe.
 
Bobby Bass

Bobby Bass

Audioholic Chief
Doubt you could hear down to 16Hz, most People can't even hear below 30 Hz. 30 Hz is low. Not much going on at those frequencies, Special effects that's Mixed into movies by Sound engineers for movie use. An Oregon Etc.

"According to the search results, humans can hear sounds below 30 Hz, but the range is limited. The human ear perceives frequencies between 20 Hz (lowest pitch) to 20 kHz (highest pitch). Sounds below 20 Hz are qualified as infrasounds, although some animals, such as mole-rats or elephants, can hear them."

"Infrasounds are not audible to humans, but they can be felt through vibrations. For example, the sound of a low-flying aircraft or a distant thunderstorm can be felt as a vibration rather than heard as a sound."

Here is a chart, as you can see, Humans typically around 31 Hertz. It's for that reason I haven't spent 2-3k or more on them higher-end high dollar subs. 600 to 800 max on price speaking for myself. Plus at my age waste of money. TLSGuy aka Doc, who has extensive knowledge plus has rubbed shoulders with some well known doctors of audio has posted many comments on this very subject of what, basically is over kill on subs, the money that people spend on them. I know of one dude and I'm sure many more out there have 33" subs T-Rex Bass.

View attachment 68205
That’s it. I’ve got to get a ferret hearing transplant for my old guy ears :)
 
Tankini

Tankini

Senior Audioholic
That’s it. I’ve got to get a ferret hearing transplant for my old guy ears :)
Lolo... my oldest Son has a much bigger living room than I do, plus 12ft high ceilings. I'm old made 66 today, so I may hear 35Hz- let's say 40 Hz on a good day. Anyway we were researching Monoliths 12" ported subs not a bad price, they are huge! plus about what? 100lbs.?. He has two 12" subs Polk HTS 12" subs. Shady J recommended those in class of subs for 500 and under. They do kick ass, so he'd have to spend 2k more on those Monolith 12" subs. I was liking SVS subs Those cylinder type Subs that stand about 33 inches tall and they are round, cause they cool looking. His set-up is a 7.2 plus he added two more front height speakers on his front wall, has two up on his ceiling as his back surrounds. But can do 5.2.4 with his Yamaha A1080 causes its Limited to either or not both. Anyways Freaking awesome it'll run you out the room at 10 dB's on the volume.
 
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sakete

Audioholic
Ok I’m about ready to pull the trigger on a sub. This is the room setup, with the rectangle representing my seating position, and the main floor standers by the blue lines (in front of the fireplace). Will likely start with just one, currently considering the Hsu VTF2-MK5 - anything else to consider before I pull the trigger given the room setup?

IMG_3960.jpeg
 

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