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  1. #1
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    How do you blend your sub?

    I received new speakers Monday and I've had them on 24/7 burn in and I figured today I'd start to blend in the SVS sub I have with them.

    I'm still completely congested from a head cold so I relied heavily on a test tone generator and SPL meter to confirm what I thought I may or may not be hearing.

    As far as sub and speakers location, they stayed the same as the previous set up, so it was really about blending the sub with the new speakers and not trying to find best locations.

    Great thing about the SVS app is I can do it all from my listening position. I played test tones every 5 hz from 30 to 100 hz repeatedly over about 20 minutes and checked for phase, cross over slope and best cross over frequency.

    I ended up with the best performance at 24db at 42 hz (higher than before but the new speakers don't go as low). Interestingly, I also had to flip the phase 180 degrees to get them in phase with the sub this time.

    Once I hit 300 hours on the speakers (and get uncongested) I'll tweak by ear.

    How do you guys blend your sub and speakers?
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  2. #2
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Sounds like you did a good set up.

    I don't use a sub in the main system. For HT I use the auto speaker set up. In a second system I have a sub/sat type set up and just dial it in by ear.
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  3. #3
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    I mentioned in my thread on" tighten your screws to driver" that Peter MacKay dialed in my A3s. The bass was so good after his setup I took my SVS pro 1000s out of my system. Before that I chased getting the subs to sound right in my room with the A3s. I would think I had them working but never felt confident over time that they didn't need more tweaking. I have since moved them back in based on a few things Peter talked about at a local show. Someone ask him why if Magico speaker could reach so low and were so good why do you recommend dual subs with your product line. His answer was. "Magico speaker don't need subs to perform well in a room. But, most rooms need subs for optimum stereo presentation. Also most people don't listen at high volumes levels in their room on a daily basis. So, subs will give size, weight and body to instrument at a lower volume levels". I think he said Magico set their subs at around 58hz So, my sub went back into my system. They are as far back from the A3s as I can get them and to reduce vibration to the floor they sit on 4" yoga block to isolate them. After my main speakers were working really well without subs. Getting the subs to work with the main speaker was a breeze. One feature I like with SVS subs is the app allows multiple configurations and I can switch for my TV, movies and music on the fly.
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  4. #4
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    First, always 2 subs or 4, never 1 or 3.

    Second, dialing in subs involves three main objectives:

    1. Crossing over with the mains (macro)
    2. Dialing the sub into the room (macro)
    3. Dialing the sub into where you place it in the room (micro)

    Third, unless one can spring for the Bugatti of subs, the Magico Titan 15, I always recommend the B&W subs. Why? They are incredibly musical subs. Second, They have DSP built in which is as simple as can be. You download the B&W Subwoofer App, then use your smart phone (placed on top of the sub to start) to dial in to the mains, room and where you placement in the room. When done, you will receive a graph print out of the frequency changes made. The net result is that you will not be able to tell that the subs are even there. Completely seamless. You can however, use the same B&W DBSubwoofer app to adjust any number of parameters, including phase, crossover, output volume, etc. should you wish.

    I personally use two B&W DB1Dís and two DB2Dís at home in my 14 x 22 (ish) room. Some people may flap about this, but they are clearly novices in doing so. The more subs you have, the less they all have to do and the smoother the overall bass response.

    Fourth, if someone already has subs (without DSP), then adding the little DSPeaker 2.0 or miniDSP can be invaluable for dialing subs into the room.

    I havenít had a lot of exposure to SVS subs, but I know my friend Rance has a pair of PC-4000ís and he had them dialed in beautifully.


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  5. #5
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike View Post
    First, always 2 subs or 4, never 1 or 3.

    Second, dialing in subs involves three main objectives:

    1. Crossing over with the mains (macro)
    2. Dialing the sub into the room (macro)
    3. Dialing the sub into where you place it in the room (micro)

    Third, unless one can spring for the Bugatti of subs, the Magico Titan 15, I always recommend the B&W subs. Why? They are incredibly musical subs. Second, They have DSP built in which is as simple as can be. You download the B&W Subwoofer App, then use your smart phone (placed on top of the sub to start) to dial in to the mains, room and where you placement in the room. When done, you will receive a graph print out of the frequency changes made. The net result is that you will not be able to tell that the subs are even there. Completely seamless. You can however, use the same B&W DBSubwoofer app to adjust any number of parameters, including phase, crossover, output volume, etc. should you wish.

    I personally use two B&W DB1Dís and two DB2Dís at home in my 14 x 22 (ish) room. Some people may flap about this, but they are clearly novices in doing so. The more subs you have, the less they all have to do and the smoother the overall bass response.

    Fourth, if someone already has subs (without DSP), then adding the little DSPeaker 2.0 or miniDSP can be invaluable for dialing subs into the room.

    I havenít had a lot of exposure to SVS subs, but I know my friend Rance has a pair of PC-4000ís and he had them dialed in beautifully.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk Pro


    I'd love to own multiple subs but lost that fight with the wife.

    Those B&W subs look fantastic!
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  6. #6
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Quote Originally Posted by Darrel View Post
    I mentioned in my thread on" tighten your screws to driver" that Peter MacKay dialed in my A3s. The bass was so good after his setup I took my SVS pro 1000s out of my system. Before that I chased getting the subs to sound right in my room with the A3s. I would think I had them working but never felt confident over time that they didn't need more tweaking. I have since moved them back in based on a few things Peter talked about at a local show. Someone ask him why if Magico speaker could reach so low and were so good why do you recommend dual subs with your product line. His answer was. "Magico speaker don't need subs to perform well in a room. But, most rooms need subs for optimum stereo presentation. Also most people don't listen at high volumes levels in their room on a daily basis. So, subs will give size, weight and body to instrument at a lower volume levels". I think he said Magico set their subs at around 58hz So, my sub went back into my system. They are as far back from the A3s as I can get them and to reduce vibration to the floor they sit on 4" yoga block to isolate them. After my main speakers were working really well without subs. Getting the subs to work with the main speaker was a breeze. One feature I like with SVS subs is the app allows multiple configurations and I can switch for my TV, movies and music on the fly.
    Great info. Thanks for sharing!

    And I agree that SVS app is fantastic to use.
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  7. #7
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Ditto the above. I came home with a sub (REL 12' Carbon Special) a couple of weeks ago. It looked beautiful...to me. It was not a popular addition, and was lucky to stay. Zero chance of a second. I have a terrible node right in my listening position. It is helping, but not completely dialed. The B&w's sound very interesting.
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  8. #8
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ricky64 View Post
    Ditto the above. I came home with a sub (REL 12' Carbon Special) a couple of weeks ago. It looked beautiful...to me. It was not a popular addition, and was lucky to stay. Zero chance of a second. I have a terrible node right in my listening position. It is helping, but not completely dialed. The B&w's sound very interesting.
    How do you like the REL? I used to have one 25 years ago.
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  9. #9
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    OK guys - update.

    First, it seems approaching 100 hours my new speakers suddenly discovered they may be able to produce a bit of bass on their own. I'm sure after several more days I'll recalibrate the blending.

    Also, I took Mikes advice and bought an 8033S-II for the sub and will be sure to do a review when I receive it. But man, those B&W subs sure would look nice in my room in the white color.....
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  10. #10
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Peabody View Post
    Sounds like you did a good set up.

    I don't use a sub in the main system. For HT I use the auto speaker set up. In a second system I have a sub/sat type set up and just dial it in by ear.
    Thanks! Yes, finally tuning will all be done by ear but wanted to get as close as possible to make it an easier process. I also typically run my SVS sub just below the 0db setting on the app so I can add or subtract a bit of sub output as needed depending on source material.
    "We are all billionaires because of the huge piles sweet dough rolling in from our participation in the ongoing campaign to suck your collective brains through a stirrer-straw." - PTA Editorial Staff

  11. #11

    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelsMinute View Post
    OK guys - update.

    First, it seems approaching 100 hours my new speakers suddenly discovered they may be able to produce a bit of bass on their own. I'm sure after several more days I'll recalibrate the blending.

    Also, I took Mikes advice and bought an 8033S-II for the sub and will be sure to do a review when I receive it. But man, those B&W subs sure would look nice in my room in the white color.....
    Can we see a picture of your listening room and setup?
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  12. #12
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    OK - running them 24/7 (as I do with all new gear) has the follow results:

    0-75 hours - speakers had so little bass, it had me wondering if woofers were working;
    75-100 - bass starts to appear;
    100-125 - bass continues to show up even more. Speakers sounding balanced now.

    Will definitely need to re-blend the sub, but will wait to do that when the sub DSP arrives and I have 300 hours on the speakers.

    It's only a guess, but where they are horn speakers and drivers move a lot less, I would think they will need more time to burn in than a more traditional design.

    The 13" SVS is going to work great with these!
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  13. #13

    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelsMinute View Post

    It's only a guess, but where they are horn speakers and drivers move a lot less, I would think they will need more time to burn in than a more traditional design.
    Just to add some clarification, a primary advantage of horn over conventional ported cone is that the drivers don't move nearly as much, this is by design. This feature greatly reduces distortion delivering a cleaner and clearer and more dynamic and realistic sound quality.
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  14. #14
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hiker View Post
    Just to add some clarification, a primary advantage of horn over conventional ported cone is that the drivers don't move nearly as much, this is by design. This feature greatly reduces distortion delivering a cleaner and clearer and more dynamic and realistic sound quality.
    Yes. Thank you.

    I've definitely been hooked on horns for about 5 years - first JBL and the last 2 years Klipsch Heritage. It would be tough for me to go back to other speaker designs!
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  15. #15

    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    I am surprised you believe you need the addition of a single 13" subwoofer for music listening. The Cornwall has two 15" bass drivers and the La Scala has two 15" folded horn drivers. These are new upgraded designs by Roy Delgado and should integrate frequency response properly for very pleasing sound quality.
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  16. #16
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hiker View Post
    I am surprised you believe you need the addition of a single 13" subwoofer for music listening. The Cornwall has two 15" bass drivers and the La Scala has two 15" folded horn drivers. These are new upgraded designs by Roy Delgado and should integrate frequency response properly for very pleasing sound quality.
    Hi - I've read yypically the Klipsch Cornwall's are tuned more for quickness of bass speed and not ultimate extension - though they are still very good. The Klipsch was fine for most music until I bring out the vodka and turn up the vocal trance to relive my rave days. . Based on owning them I would agree as the bass was indeed fairly quick and agile and not slow with super low extension.

    I just upgraded to the La Scala's last week which have a 15' fully horn loaded woofer (vs. direct radiating of the Cornwall IV's) that only has a double fold vs. their normal triple fold horn loading. This makes the woofer roll off below about 55hz (per testing in my room) and do not have the lower frequency extension of the Cornwall's so the sub will definitely be welcome.

    Pre-DSP I've found best blending with the sub to be about 44hz at 24db where the steep sloop helps keep the sub out of the speaker frequencies as much as possible since the horn loaded woofer has a different sound than the ported sub does. I'll be curious to see what changes when I receive the sub DSP module.
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  17. #17
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    After further burn in on my speakers and then tuning the sub by ear with the SVS app, turns out the sub is in phase at 90 degrees and not the 180 degrees that sounded right a couple of days ago.
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  18. #18

    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Ears should be used for the final adjustments, but measurements are mandatory for proper subwoofer integration/optimization - especially for subs which have more adjustments than just polarity and low-pass filter crossover frequency (e.g. Rel).
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  19. #19
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Itís interesting to see how guys deal with the integration of their subs
    My thing is probably rudimentary by some standards but it has great results here

    First off my main speakers are a pair of Arteluthe Stilettos and I have two REL G1ís running in stereo

    First I find a position in the room for the RELs that by ear seems to blend well, not worrying specifically about phase or cross over etc . Once Iím there I have a simple db app on my iPad I run to find where the main speakers start to drop off. This is simple as I have a 24/96 download of about 20 different frequencies . In the case of the Artelutheís they are at best estimate -3 db at 35hz in room and falling very quickly lower than that .
    So at 40hz I take a screen shot of the average volume db of the mains, bearing in mind the subs are turned off at this point
    Now with the RELs turned on set to cross over at 40hz I can dial in the volume until I see the system average db start to go up and back it off until it matches the screen shot of the average db of the mains.

    Then running down all the frequencies and paying attention to the db app I can see if things have stayed ďflatĒ until the roughly 25Hz the REL G1ís can comfortably go in room.

    Thatís the starting point, it goes quicker than it sounds as I right it up.

    I will start dialing in and playing with phase and crossover points from there but this method really does get me a deep natural extension to the mains that sound like the speaker rather than an appendage

    Iím sure a few guys on here could blow more than a few holes in this method but , itís easy and effective

  20. #20
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Quote Originally Posted by ADCO View Post
    Itís interesting to see how guys deal with the integration of their subs
    My thing is probably rudimentary by some standards but it has great results here

    First off my main speakers are a pair of Arteluthe Stilettos and I have two REL G1ís running in stereo

    First I find a position in the room for the RELs that by ear seems to blend well, not worrying specifically about phase or cross over etc . Once Iím there I have a simple db app on my iPad I run to find where the main speakers start to drop off. This is simple as I have a 24/96 download of about 20 different frequencies . In the case of the Artelutheís they are at best estimate -3 db at 35hz in room and falling very quickly lower than that .
    So at 40hz I take a screen shot of the average volume db of the mains, bearing in mind the subs are turned off at this point
    Now with the RELs turned on set to cross over at 40hz I can dial in the volume until I see the system average db start to go up and back it off until it matches the screen shot of the average db of the mains.

    Then running down all the frequencies and paying attention to the db app I can see if things have stayed ďflatĒ until the roughly 25Hz the REL G1ís can comfortably go in room.

    Thatís the starting point, it goes quicker than it sounds as I right it up.

    I will start dialing in and playing with phase and crossover points from there but this method really does get me a deep natural extension to the mains that sound like the speaker rather than an appendage

    Iím sure a few guys on here could blow more than a few holes in this method but , itís easy and effective
    Thanks for the share on your method! It's always great to see how others do it for their set ups.

    I think so long as you ultimately get to a point that sounds great to you, then the method. you used is just fine.
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  21. #21

    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    I use much higher crossover point - basically using Geddes multisub method to fight the room modes. It takes some time - but in the end, the results are more than great.

    Very important note - the best looking FR measurements (including time domain - waterfall, group delay...) doesn't mean the best sound.
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  22. #22
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Definitely does take time to get right.

    As I've played with the settings on the new La Scala's, the final setting is VERY different than what I ended up with on the Cornwall IV's.

    With the Cornwalls and their direct radiating woofers that rolled off at about 40-45hz I got best results at 24db crossover at 36 hz and it blended great.

    With the new La Scala's and their horn loaded 15" woofers that only go down to about 55-60hz I tried 24db slope, 18, 12 at all different frequencies and still couldn't get it to blend at all (even with phase adjustments and such).

    Then I remembered how REL recommended I set up their sub I had a long time ago, and set it to 6bd slope, started at 30 hz and ended up at 37 hz and seems to be blending much better. We'll know when I get about 300-400 hours on the speakers if that setting remains.
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  23. #23
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Hey Mark wanna see a picture of my listening room? I am not shy. Not sure but I must have got sublucky. Put the single SB13 Ultra dead center in front of my rack between the speakers and best bass ever. I have had a few guys over for GTGs and they agreed too. Just call me the sub whisperer!


    Quote Originally Posted by mep View Post
    Can we see a picture of your listening room and setup?
    Marty

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  24. #24

    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Quote Originally Posted by nc42acc View Post
    Hey Mark wanna see a picture of my listening room? I am not shy. Not sure but I must have got sublucky. Put the single SB13 Ultra dead center in front of my rack between the speakers and best bass ever. I have had a few guys over for GTGs and they agreed too. Just call me the sub whisperer!
    Sure Marty, post a picture of your room. So you are a one sub slinger?
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  25. #25
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Sorry Mark it was a little cluttered when this pic was taken. Had several options out for a GTG. I am not a bass fanatic so a single sub is all I can sling.



    Quote Originally Posted by mep View Post
    Sure Marty, post a picture of your room. So you are a one sub slinger?
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  26. #26
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Quote Originally Posted by nc42acc View Post
    Sorry Mark it was a little cluttered when this pic was taken. Had several options out for a GTG. I am not a bass fanatic so a single sub is all I can sling.

    That sure is a nice looking set up Marty! SVS certainly makes some great subs.
    "We are all billionaires because of the huge piles sweet dough rolling in from our participation in the ongoing campaign to suck your collective brains through a stirrer-straw." - PTA Editorial Staff

  27. #27

    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Quote Originally Posted by nc42acc View Post
    Sorry Mark it was a little cluttered when this pic was taken. Had several options out for a GTG. I am not a bass fanatic so a single sub is all I can sling.

    Your room looks nice Marty. I'm glad the single sub and its location work for you in your room. I've been using dual subs since the early 1980s and there is no going back for me.
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  28. #28
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Maybe I should have tried the other SB13 before I sold it.

    Quote Originally Posted by mep View Post
    Your room looks nice Marty. I'm glad the single sub and its location work for you in your room. I've been using dual subs since the early 1980s and there is no going back for me.
    Marty

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  29. #29

    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Quote Originally Posted by nc42acc View Post
    Maybe I should have tried the other SB13 before I sold it.
    Agree 100% My guess is you wouldn't have sold it.
    Micro Seiki SX-8000 air bearing table, SME 312s arm, SME 3012R arn, Dynavector XV-1s cartridge, Lyra Etna SL cartridge, ARC Ref 3 phono stage, Otari MX-55 2 track R2R, Ampex 350 tape repros, Roon Nucleus Plus music server, HiFi Rose 150B DAC, ARC Ref 6, ARC Ref 75 with KT-150s, JBL 4345 speakers, Viero Equilibro Level 3 speaker cables, and Definitive Technology Ref subs.

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  30. #30
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Cíest la vie

    Quote Originally Posted by mep View Post
    Agree 100% My guess is you wouldn't have sold it.
    Marty

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  31. #31
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Really interesting post.

    I have a total of four REL T-Zero subs ... they are little gems in my estimation.

    In my living room setup, they are hidden behind two cabinets that sit in 45-degree angles to the corners of the walls. Ideal setup? No. But it passes the wife test 100%. She has no idea the subwoofers are there, seriously! They are paired with Harbeth P3ESR-XDs, which also pass the wife test. She likes them. The cabinets are beautiful and the somewhat retro look fits the living-room vibe well.

    My other two RELs are paired with Harbeth C7s. They are in my home office, about 12 feet by 12 feet. They are visible and the crossover is set pretty low. But they definitely add lower-range nuance when necessary. The C7s probably do not "need" them, but they do add to the overall experience.

    We have wood floors, which probably helps explain why the downward-firing RELs work well in our house.

  32. #32
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Quote Originally Posted by SteveInMinn View Post
    Really interesting post.

    I have a total of four REL T-Zero subs ... they are little gems in my estimation.

    In my living room setup, they are hidden behind two cabinets that sit in 45-degree angles to the corners of the walls. Ideal setup? No. But it passes the wife test 100%. She has no idea the subwoofers are there, seriously! They are paired with Harbeth P3ESR-XDs, which also pass the wife test. She likes them. The cabinets are beautiful and the somewhat retro look fits the living-room vibe well.

    My other two RELs are paired with Harbeth C7s. They are in my home office, about 12 feet by 12 feet. They are visible and the crossover is set pretty low. But they definitely add lower-range nuance when necessary. The C7s probably do not "need" them, but they do add to the overall experience.

    We have wood floors, which probably helps explain why the downward-firing RELs work well in our house.
    Thanks for sharing! It always adds an interesting dynamic when we need to blend W.A.F. and the listening room being a "real" room in the house vs. a dedicated listening room.
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    OK guys - received and set up the sub DSP today Mike recommended.

    VERY nice upgrade indeed.

    Definitely noticing more even (output wise) sounding bass and more texture and differentiation in the bass notes than before.

    Honestly it's a no-brainer for the price of the 8033 v2.
    "We are all billionaires because of the huge piles sweet dough rolling in from our participation in the ongoing campaign to suck your collective brains through a stirrer-straw." - PTA Editorial Staff

  34. #34
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    I do a DOE (Design of Experiments) to integrate my sub to my 2-channel mains. I really like a good p-value. DOE analysis in JMP.



    DOEs also let you characterize interactions, and plot them as a 3-D response surface. You can't do this with OFAT analysis.


    Leverage plots across different frequencies

  35. #35
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Quote Originally Posted by Puma Cat View Post
    I do a DOE (Design of Experiments) to integrate my sub to my 2-channel mains. I really like a good p-value. DOE analysis in JMP.



    DOEs also let you characterize interactions, and plot them as a 3-D response surface. You can't do this with OFAT analysis.


    Leverage plots across different frequencies

    You are WAAAAAAYYYYYYY more sophisticated than I am. LOL.
    "We are all billionaires because of the huge piles sweet dough rolling in from our participation in the ongoing campaign to suck your collective brains through a stirrer-straw." - PTA Editorial Staff

  36. #36
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelsMinute View Post
    You are WAAAAAAYYYYYYY more sophisticated than I am. LOL.
    Sorry, DFSS MBB. I used to teach this stuff to PhDs, MS, and EE's in science and engineering. The smart ones jumped on it, though, just as I did when I learned it. One of the most useful and insightful things I ever learned working as a scientist. Honestly don't know why DOE is not taught at University for scientists and engineers.

  37. #37
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    Re: How do you blend your sub?

    Soundoctor - all about subs
    Interesting ideas by Barry Ober from JL Audio.

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How do you blend your sub?

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