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Thread: Buying my first Subwoofer

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
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    Question Buying my first Subwoofer

    I currently have two Sierra-1s and one Sierra-1 center, I've been using them for 10 years now, they are wonderful!

    Upgrading from a Denon AVR-S540BT (70W/channel) to a used Pioneer ELITE SC-27 (140W/channel) this weekend. I've never owned a subwoofer before, looking at my price range it is either: L12, LV12F, or LVX12

    My living room is wide open with many doorways and hallways. I'm leaning towards the L12 just so I don't have to worry about vents, but would the extra power of the LVX12 be worth it for my setup?

    I'm thinking because of the added power of the new receiver the L12 should be plenty for me. Thoughts?


    e: also being a audio novice, I noticed the Pioneer just has one RCA output for the subwoofer, is that all it takes to connect to a L12?
    Last edited by fozzythebear; 08-06-2020 at 11:30 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Houston, Texas
    Posts
    460

    Default Re: Buying my first Subwoofer

    How big is your room (including if open to other areas)?
    Depending on this, you may want to save up for a sub with bigger driver (or add a second Lxx down the road) or go for the most you can afford now with highest output (the LVX12).

    What's your worry about vents (I think you mean ports)?

    Yes, RCA out from the AVR to RCA in on the sub - 1 cable only. You can use either LFE IN or LINE IN. I use LFE IN, fwiw.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
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    5

    Default Re: Buying my first Subwoofer

    Room is 15' x 20' Many opening to other rooms.
    QGM74he.png
    Picture is not to scale :-D

    I was thinking since my setup sounds good now, adding a sub would make it even better.

    Oops, I meant ports, I thought you needed to keep ports a certain distance from walls?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2020
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    189

    Default Re: Buying my first Subwoofer

    Is that roughly 20' x 20'? That's not small, plus open to other areas. I don't think I'd want less than a good pair of 12" ported subs (even 15", budget permitting). Even if it means getting one now and the 2nd one later.

    The way bass works subwoofers "see" all that open space and will try to pressurize it. More space requires more sub. 1 sub can work if you can find just the right spot. 2 are better at dealing with room modes and will give you a smoother, cleaner response over a larger area. When it comes to bass you're at the mercy of your room's acoustics. Meaning finding a single good spot where 1 sub performs best can be challenging and often isn't where you want it.

    I don't think you need to worry too much about distance from boundaries with sub ports unless it's rear firing and you're right up against the wall. Mine are front ported and sit pretty close to a room boundary.

    If you've never had a sub in your setup I think you're in for a pleasant surprise. Properly set up a good sub does more than just add bass. Subs live in the bass region and in general will do a better job of reproducing it than most speakers will. Offloading those lower frequencies to subs can also free up your main speakers and amp to focus on the mids and highs where they really shine. My experience was that even my main speakers seemed to play cleaner, clearer and gave me a little bit more headroom too.

    I see it all the time, so many folks underestimate or dismiss what good subwoofage can do for a system. Not saying that's what you did. After all you are here now, inquiring about it!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
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    5

    Default Re: Buying my first Subwoofer

    I think I'll save up and get the F15HP for Christmas, I don't think my wife would let me have two in the living room. I already had to convince her that the Sierra-1s are better than tiny "well known brand" speakers!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
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    Central NC
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    95

    Default Re: Buying my first Subwoofer

    Quote Originally Posted by fozzythebear View Post
    I think I'll save up and get the F15HP for Christmas, I don't think my wife would let me have two in the living room. I already had to convince her that the Sierra-1s are better than tiny "well known brand" speakers!
    Good plan. It takes a lot of power for that many cubic feet. And you can always use it as an end table. People do.

    And with an open plan like that, one would hope you'll have less trouble with room modes, which would lead me to want one bigger sub rather than two smaller ones. Said the guy who is running a pair of LVX12s in my smaller sealed room, which has plenty of room modes to work out.
    "If it sounds good, it is good." -- Duke Ellington

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Houston, Texas
    Posts
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    Default Re: Buying my first Subwoofer

    Agree that's a good plan to get the F15HP, then you can start convincing your wife you need a second one and it would make a great birthday present

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Stouffville,Ont..
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    Default Re: Buying my first Subwoofer

    Quote Originally Posted by fozzythebear View Post
    I think I'll save up and get the F15HP for Christmas, I don't think my wife would let me have two in the living room. I already had to convince her that the Sierra-1s are better than tiny "well known brand" speakers!
    Agreed....save up and buy once cry once...save a tad more and get the f18.... larger driver more mass to move air...only marginally larger cabinet vs. the 15s.
    Speakers: Towers & Horizon(w RAAL), MA CP-WT260 In-Wall
    Sub: Funk Audio 18 in Santos

    Source: Martanz NR1710, Oppo BDP 103D & LG B9 65"

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2020
    Posts
    98

    Default Re: Buying my first Subwoofer

    Quote Originally Posted by fozzythebear View Post
    I think I'll save up and get the F15HP for Christmas, I don't think my wife would let me have two in the living room. I already had to convince her that the Sierra-1s are better than tiny "well known brand" speakers!
    sure she will ,Wives are easy as heck to play! lol

    just drop the sub gain on her favorite movies and HAMMER yours, then when she asks "WHY" say it has to do with the lateral and horizontal deflection of room acouctics that 2 subs "will" fix....in your movies LOL!
    TGIF and jammin" DSOTM and the Wall on board!

    love my Rythmik and Ascends!

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