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Can Sealed subs do the job for HT???

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  • Can Sealed subs do the job for HT???

    I've been doing hours of debating, agonizing, thinking, testing, and returning subwoofers.

    I'll start by stating that I'm new to the AV world.

    I've already posted here and gotten responses/advice on sub choices that I appreciate. I'm still in the decision process.

    What I'm trying to figure out now, is, can a sealed 15" sub provide better or equal sound quality (deepness, wow factor, etc) over a 12" ported sub?

    In my case, size and weight does matter. Can the Rythmik Sealed subs compete with the HSU and SVS in HT? And can the HSU and SVS compete with the Rythmik in music??? I've talked to all 3 companies, all claim they are great (no suprise there) - but the Rythmik team seems to think the F15 will "kill" the SVS and HSU.

    I'm looking to do 60/40 HT/Music and am looking between the

    SVS PC12-NSD (60lbs, 36" tall, 16" around)

    Rythmik F15 (90lbs - 20" cube - 90lbs - or the Lux edition 18"(W) x 24 " (H )x 18 "(D)

    Rythmik F12 (80lbs - 15-3/4"(W) x 15-3/4" (H )x 17"(D)

    HSU VTF3-MK3 (90 lbs - 21.5”(h) X 17”(w) X 25”(d))


    There is a similar thread on AVSForum here, that I also asked a similar question. I was curious to see what you guys had to say:

    http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1146473

  • #2
    Seaton Sound.

    Yes, an outstanding example is the Seaton SubMersive. Other members will agree here. Ported? Ok....Seaton Terraform or Terraform XL.

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    • #3
      I would agree that a sealed sub can definitely do the job and do it well. I am looking at the subs you mentioned above, but really have my eye on the Submersive. I personally just don't like the bloated sound of a ported sub, but I prefer music to movies. I am just waiting to find out how things shake out on a few issues (of mine) before I make a purchase. Look forward to reading your impressions someday.

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      • #4
        Both designs have advantages and both designs can be good for HT and music. Some people are more sensitive to port noise (while at the same time they seem to be the ones they drive the heck out of their subs to begin with, but that's another story). At this stage in sub evolution you can get a very musical ported sub that has a lot of authority and slam while digging to the deepest reaches of what the human ear/body can perceive or you can get a powerful sealed sub that can start to gain ground under the tuning point of the ported sub by taking advantage of room gain and a shallower roll off.

        If you have a large or leaky room with a minimal amount of room gain then sealed subs lose a lot of their advantages. If you have a small room and pound on your sub sealed subs tend to make more sense. Also, sealed subs do have the advantage that if you want lower and louder you can add more. The catch is, how many subs do you want to lay the cash out for?

        Compounding the issue is that people still harken back to old stereotypes and hold them as everlasting axioms such as a sealed sub being inherently musical and a ported sub being inherently boomy but effective for home theater. Based off of the subs I have owned and auditioned at stores, audio festivals, trade shows and friends homes, I think both designs can achieve both home theater power and musical tightness, it just depends on how well the particular subwoofer is designed.

        For most people, port noise is seldom an issue. I have been happy with ported subs for years now as I appreciate the designs efficiency and am limited to a max of two subs in any one room. That is my preference though and may not be yours. The audio hobby is filled with people trying to state that their subjective opinion is correct based off of some narrow set of objective results. In the end it all comes down to your tastes and preferences. All of the subs mentioned are very good both subjectively and objectively.

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        • #5
          Well I've yet to use one of the Rythmik servo subs, but Danny Richie of GR-Research (also designs speakers and crossovers for TCA, AV123, Skiing Ninja, Usher, etc.) seems to think they are the only way to go, and his is an opinion I take seriously. What I gather is that for music a servo sub can't be beat. For HT it's probably a little more complicated than that as it becomes a matter of "How big do you want it?" If I were buying today I'd probably buy the Rythmik F15, but my MFW-15 is really great when it works, (:doh! 1:) so ported subs can do a good job too.

          My ultimate plan is to build a pair of Danny's N3 towers with built-in 12" servo subs, so I can run them full range for music and get super-clean servo bass down to 20hz, but cross them over to my mfw-15 at 40hz for ht and get some bone crunching boom during the explosions and such.

          I'm a little curious to hear what Mark Seaton has to say about servo subs. Not necessarily the Rythmik ones particularly, but he's got some fantastic designs and he's not done a servo sub to my knowledge. Maybe that has to do with some proprietary amp technology he doesn't have or maybe he just likes the conventional approach better.

          Servo subs aside, there are definitely sealed subs that can keep up with the ported big boys for HT. They just tend to be a lot more expensive. There are also ported subs that can sound pretty nice for music, but as mentioned above it depends on the designer a bit, so you should audition to see what you like.
          Angel City Audio
          East Street Audio

          ACA, Melody, Onix, NuForce, KR Audio

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          • #6
            Any idea where I can get the Seaton Submersive and how much it sells for?

            Also, just found out that SVS is making some more sealed subs (in addition to their SVS SB12-PLUS) due out in October 2009. I wonder how they'll price em, and how they'll stack up to the Rythmiks.

            http://www.eclecticelectronics.net/h...ed-subwoofers/

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            • #7
              Seaton Sound sells direct, the Submersive is approx $2k plus Shipping.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by GreggyVT
                Any idea where I can get the Seaton Submersive and how much it sells for?
                http://seatonsound.websitetoolbox.com/post?id=3366417
                "The evil that men do lives after them; The good is oft interred with their bones."

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                • #9
                  What kind of music do you listen to? I say that because I think the SVS PB12NSD is better for bumping/humming music (techno/rap) than popping/slamming music (rock/metal)

                  It may be due to the ported design, but I found it lacking for my rock tastes.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I used 4 sealed subs in my set up. I found i preferred the sealed sound of a dayton audio titanic sub compared to my ported svs pb12 plus/2. I researched my sealed upgrade options and learned you have to compromise some of your goals. It can be small loud and inexpensive, pick two. (not my original idea, but paraphrased poorly) i chose small and loud, and minimized the expense by going the diy route. All told i spent about 4k, but now have 4 18inch cubes with high excursion 15 inch subs, each with 1800 watts and a boosted low end with eq to keep things flat in room to 15 hz.

                    If any of this was helpful, great. If not, oops.
                    Pioneer pro-151FD ; home made iTunes music server ; Infinity Beta / Interlude / Primus blend ; DIY quad 15 subs and 4 ep2500s for power ; PS3 ; Outlaw 990 and five M200s. LS9 in Piano Black Obsidian Stardust :rock:

                    My Home and HT Build Thread

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                    • #11
                      I have a dual Rythmik/GR 12" sub that I built. It's fantastic for music.

                      That said, depending on how loud you listen, and how big your room is one of the DirectServo subs from Rythmik, or GR/Rythmik may not satisfy you. This is primarily simply because they're not long throw high output drivers with gobs of power behind them. They're modestly powered, good drivers in a sealed box focusing on sound quality. If you want bone crushing LFE from a single subwoofer in the price range of the subs you're listing you should probably go with a ported sub. They will give you more output down low for your dollar, but they will not sound as good as the Rythmik servo subs.

                      Edit: In my small library/office my Rythmik/GR sub is pretty crazy for HT because the room has a lot of gain. That said, I don't watch movies in there.
                      With a shovel...

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Stereodude
                        They will give you more output down low for your dollar, but they will not sound as good as the Rythmik servo subs.
                        I know I'm going to regret mentioning this for danger of the thread going aside, BUT -

                        How would the MFW-15 do against the Rythmik in music?

                        (this coming from me who pre-ordered the MFW a few weeks ago, then canceled the VERY next day due to amp and company worries - now I'm debating about buying the MFW again??? WHY!?)

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by GreggyVT
                          How would the MFW-15 do against the Rythmik in music?
                          It will never be as good, but how far away from the Rythmik it will end up comes down to a variety of factors, like your gear and it's capability for fine tuning a sub, you ability to dial in your gear for optimum results, etc. Most people who whine about the sound of ported subs probably don't have their subs dialed in correctly.
                          With a shovel...

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by gwilks98
                            What kind of music do you listen to? I say that because I think the SVS PB12NSD is better for bumping/humming music (techno/rap) than popping/slamming music (rock/metal)

                            It may be due to the ported design, but I found it lacking for my rock tastes.
                            All kinds of music, with rock/metal at the top. Have you tried to compare to the HSU VTF3 MK3?

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