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#359926 - 12/01/11 10:13 PM Multiple Subs (2nd attempt)
Nick B Offline

Registered: 08/05/06
Posts: 504
I tried posting a topic, hoping for some suggestions from some folks who have listened to several different performance levels of subs or even have multiple subs, but the thread was derailed by some guy who really doesn't like Axiom subs for some reason. Anyways, maybe he can argue as much as he likes about it over on the other thread and we can discuss the original thread topic over here. It doesn't seem like it will end over there any time soon.

I have an original LFM-1 Outlaw sub and have been thinking that a few years down the line that I would like to upgrade to something with a little more extension and output. I wouldn't want to spend more than around $2000 total. So there are four options as I see it.

1. Go for an all out $2000 subwoofer that extends flat down to 15Hz and maybe lower and has plenty of headroom, for no matter how much the movie scene is calling for or how large the room is.

2. Go for two $1000 subs to help smooth out the bass in most of the seats.

3. Go for three $600 - $700 subs and try to integrate my LFM-1 for a total of four subs.

4. Try to integrate the LFM-1 with scenarios 1 or 2.

With (3) I could get the LFM-1EX and there is likely no doubt that the subs would work well together since they have the same driver (and I think enclosure) as the LFM1. They just went with a slightly more powerful amp and a different EQ. This would give the flattest response at every seat. At the other end of the spectrum, I could do (1), which would give the best bass in the money seat, but probably not any other ones.

Another question that comes from these different scenarios is how well will different subs work together in a room? Would a well designed $600 sub play well with one of a different brand?

Will a well designed $600 sub play well with a $1000 sub or even a $2000 sub?

This was a nice article which just scratched the surface on this topic.

#359927 - 12/01/11 10:14 PM Re: Multiple Subs (2nd attempt) [Re: Nick B]
Ken.C Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 18044
Loc: NoVA
Good call on starting a new thread. Sorry about that.

My understanding is that subs from different brands will be ok together. I think my choice would be the 2 $1K subs, but that's just me.
I am the Doctor, and THIS... is my SPOON!

#359930 - 12/01/11 10:31 PM Re: Multiple Subs (2nd attempt) [Re: Ken.C]
St_PatGuy Offline

Registered: 03/07/05
Posts: 7463
Loc: Glendale, Arizona
NIck, ideally I think you should get matching subs, but sometimes that's just not in the cards. I run multiple subs from different manufacturers and have good results. The main sub is a Hsu VTF3 mkII followed by two smaller 10" sealed subs. Yeah, it looks horrible on paper, but the smaller subs do a good job of filling in the gaps created by room nodes. I've always run them in rectangular rooms.

On the other hand, grunt (Dean) has tried out multiple subs (I loaned him mine to test) in his listening room and had worse results than just running his single EP500. His room has some odd nooks and crannies and I wonder if those do weird things to the room response?

For the most part, I think running multiple subs is beneficial.
"Nothin' up my sleeve. . ." --Bullwinkle J. Moose

#359934 - 12/01/11 11:06 PM Re: Multiple Subs (2nd attempt) [Re: St_PatGuy]
dakkon Offline

Registered: 02/08/04
Posts: 1863
Nick, i have an EP600. I have also lived in 4 different locations since buying the 600. I have never had a problem with lack of output/fill, Also there have never been "bad" seats in any of the locations i have lived, I do plan on adding another 600. However, this is for a stereo setup, not due to lack of output.

If you check out the auction site, you might be able to pick up a pair of EP600's for your budget, or close to.

When the amp for my 600 gets back, next week. I can tell you how my current pair 8" JBL subs mix with the 600 if you want?

#359940 - 12/02/11 12:22 AM Re: Multiple Subs (2nd attempt) [Re: Nick B]
JohnK Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/11/02
Posts: 10644
Nick, the most significant difference in avoiding/cancelling room modes for smoother overall bass response occurs with two correctly-positioned subs. Basically, from research by Dr. Toole and others, this is at the mid-points of the side walls or front and back walls, or diagonally opposite corners. Four subs do make for some further improvement, but less than going from one to two.

The most cost-effective change for you would appear to be to add a second sub similar to your LFM-1. More costly would be to instead get two subs which had more bass extension than the LFM-1.

Enjoy the music, not the equipment.

#359941 - 12/02/11 12:26 AM Re: Multiple Subs (2nd attempt) [Re: dakkon]
fredk Offline

Registered: 12/06/07
Posts: 7786
Loc: Canada
Depends how complicated you want to get. Floyd Toole and Harmon suggested 4 matching subs. Earl Geddes suggests 3 subs to handle 50-150/200 Hz and one for below 50 (has to do with room modes).

I suspect if you use non matching subs there could be more EQ work to get a flat frequency response. Think about it. If you have 3 subs contributing at 100 Hz and one contributing at 40 Hz, it seems reasonable you are going to have more output at 100 Hz all else being equal.

Blujays1: Spending Fred's money one bottle at a time, no two... Oh crap!

#359948 - 12/02/11 08:19 AM Re: Multiple Subs (2nd attempt) [Re: fredk]
RickF Offline

Registered: 02/26/05
Posts: 5210
Loc: Vero Beach, Florida
Nick, I am in the same situation as Sean in that I have what would appear on paper and to the average Axiomite the absolute mismatch made in hades, a first generation EP350 and an EP600 coupled together along opposite mid-sidewalls of a 14' x 25' dedicated room that was brought together by pure happenstance. I've ran this setup for a couple of years maybe and without throwing numbers around that I probably wouldn't know too much about anyway I can tell you that the combination works surprisingly very well.

I am soon to part ways with that little EP350 so just maybe I'll finally pair the 600 with another same or very similar sub upon much procrastination after six years.

My vote would be a pair of matching subs to fill that gaps that a single might not be able to accomplish on it's own but as always and depending on your particular room, layout and acoustics your mileage may very.

Our Room


#359961 - 12/02/11 09:53 AM Re: Multiple Subs (2nd attempt) [Re: RickF]
Nick B Offline

Registered: 08/05/06
Posts: 504
As JohnK mentioned the most budget-friendly thing that I could do sometime soon would be to add Outlaw LFM-1EX to my current setup. The LFM-1 and LFM-1EX are pretty much matching subs, except the EX has slightly more head room and slightly more extension (but same driver, port size, number of ports and cabinet). Would adding a midrange pair of subs (maybe around $800 to $1000 price range, such as SVS, Axiom or Hsu), when the budget allows for it, work out well if the Outlaw subs were in diagonally opposite corners and the midrange subs were in diagonally opposite corners of a rectangular room?

I am thinking that the midrange subs would add some more extension and impact, but the extension that they add would be smoothed out for every seat. The frequencies that all four subs play well would be really smooth for each seat.

#359977 - 12/02/11 12:07 PM Re: Multiple Subs (2nd attempt) [Re: Nick B]
INANE Offline

Registered: 02/04/04
Posts: 1697
Loc: Omaha, Nebraska
I can see positives for both having the same subs and for having different ones. I would believe all subs would have slightly different response curves so you could use that to potentially create a smoother overall response, but it could also potentially create larger peaks and valleys depending on how the compliment each other.

IMO without spending a ton of time analyzing it I'd just say either way is fine.

My personal experiences with multiple subs has left me weary of cancellation effects. I assume it has to do with how the walls reflect the sound into the waves of the other sub. That said I'm planning on used two subs in my new HT.
HT v2.0
HT v1.0

#359985 - 12/02/11 01:49 PM Re: Multiple Subs (2nd attempt) [Re: INANE]
Adrian Offline

Registered: 12/27/08
Posts: 6926
Loc: It's all about the location.
I would expect it would be preferable to have two or more subs of the same manufacturer but I've read many accounts of people successfully integrating different subs in their systems(at least of similar output/quality).

I'll also throw this out here for discussion....I was talking to a local P'digm dealer who insisted that a good SINGLE sub works better than multiple subs using the two drops in a pond analogy, that soundwaves may have the effect of cancelling each other out when they collide.
Half of communication is listening. You can't listen with your mouth.

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