View Full Version : What Sub (if any) do you use with your Ascends?

08-26-2003, 11:24 AM
I run a SVS 25-31 PCi (tuned to 22hz).

I felt that VTF-2 would not be able to hang in my room and the VTF-3 was out of my league price wise, so for a 60 bucks more I decided to toss in with the SVS. Impressions so far...wow. I get some serious bass with this sub. I mean it vibrates my seat when I watch movies with low frequencies. I havn't bottomed her our or distorted her yet, which I guess is a plus. It also blends very well with my Ascends when I play music. I have it set so you cant localize the bass, but you still feel it when it hits. I love it, and I wouldn't trade anything in the world for it (except for a bigger SVS of course).


[he_who_dares_wins] - sas

08-26-2003, 12:35 PM
Also running the HSU VTF-2 sub with my Ascends,expresses the low end of my music tight and precise, with no boominess.

08-26-2003, 01:27 PM
I am a VTF-3 user. When I was going through the speaker process, I talked to DF about the sub, and he said that if I could, get the VTF-3 because it was simply more capable, but the VTF-2 would be fine. I talked to Dr. Hsu, and he said the same thing. So I went to Hsu Research to listen, intending to get the VTF-2, but I walked out with a b-stock VTF-3 instead.


08-26-2003, 01:50 PM
I also have a VTF-2 and I'm quite happy with it. If I went anywhere from here with the sub, I would probably look toward DIY or a custom one by Rutledge or someone else.

08-26-2003, 01:57 PM
I was running an IB until the recent move. :( I've got to decide whether to do it in this house too. I won't have time for a while. Presently running a borrowed Polk. :0

08-26-2003, 03:05 PM
Currently using an Adire Rava subwoofer with my Ascends. Haven't heard the Hsus or SVSs that everyone keeps raving about, so not sure how the Rava compares. But I have found it to be very accurate and has the ability to deftly reproduce even the most complicated of bass lines. If posters on AVS and other boards are correct in their assessment, the Adire Rava is hard to beat in terms of sheer bass accuracy because of its sealed design but gives up something to the Hsus and SVSs when it comes to playing lower and with greater slam.

08-26-2003, 10:36 PM
EZ-V, I'd say that your post on the Rava is on target. I've heard that it is an exceptionally accurate, musical sub.

08-26-2003, 11:54 PM
Brian at Rutledge Audio Design is currently building a sub for me with an av12 driver and rythmik amp with lt circuit. Hopefully it will be here by the end of next week. I can't wait! He has been really great to work with, is very knowledgeable and has been very responsive to my endless stream of questions.

Now, if my 170's would just show up I'd be in heaven... :-)

08-31-2003, 11:44 AM
Call me crazy, but I use the Yamaha SW118V sub with the AudioSource Amp3 in 400W bridged mode. I paid about $200 a piece for both items refurbished. The 18" sub is linear to 20Hz and only starts distorting at 15Hz. With the 400W amp I get up to 120dB of undistorted bass.

Of course not everyone has room for a 7 cubic feet box in their home theater. :)


09-02-2003, 03:07 PM
I had my CBM 170's for an entire year before finally getting an Adire Rava a few weeks ago. I can't believe how much proper sub placement effects response. Anyway, I think I've got it placed and dialed in as good as possible and I'm thrilled with the Rava. The balance of accuracy and output is more than satisfactory for my taste.

09-05-2003, 08:51 AM
I use an Aperion 8" sub. Not a chest thumper or subsonic troller by any means. It does, however, blend well with my 170's.

09-16-2003, 12:59 AM
I use a RAVA with my CBM 170s and CMT340c. I absolutely love the combo. Non boomy accurate bass is what I crave for in music, and the RAVA has it in spades! I just crank it up 5-8 db while watching DVDs and have sufficient slam to scare the dog [:D]! Don't think I'll be upgrading for a while....Famous last words....[}:)]

09-16-2003, 05:26 AM
I've got to hear a Rava....

Derek....how is your custom sub? Did the Ascends show up yet?


09-18-2003, 06:58 AM

I got my new sub yesterday, and so far it rocks! You can see some pictures of it here:


Brian is are really great guy. He is extremely knowledgeable and very easy to work with. We must have traded 30+ emails about the sub. Most (99.9%) of these were questions from me. He answered the emails almost immediately every time. More importantly, he is a great craftsman. I think the design of the internal braces is a great example of his skills. Note I am not in any way related to Brian or Rutledge Audio Design. I got his name for the people at htf, where he posts frequently and is highly recommended (as I'm sure you know).

The primary reason I went with a custom sub was due to the size. I wanted a fairly small footprint sub that produced clean output down to 20 hz. Also, I didn't really need to to play extremely loud. I think this sub meets my requirements perfectly. I had looked at sunfire and rel subs because they met my size requirements, but I thought they sounded like crap (my opinion) and were very expensive. The sound could have been due to the placement and room characteristics, but even so they still cost much more than this sub. This sub ended being a little bigger (the initial target was a 14" cube, but the downfiring design required a slightly bigger cabinet), but it still much smaller than a vtf-2. The driver (a stryke av12) is huge - it must weight about 20 lbs, and it really is a work of art. Too bad it has to sit in a box. The enclosure is 3/4" mdf with 1.5" mdf for the baffle. The finished sub weights 70+ pounds.

The amp is a 380w rythmik amp with the upgraded transistors and a custom l/t circuit. Brian worked with Brian Ding of Rythmik to build the correct l/t circuit for this enclosure. The result is a l/t tuned for 20hz with a qtc of .7. The amp also has a built in subsonic filter and a few other goodies. I haven't played with these yet.

The finish on the sub is a textured black paint, which pretty closely matches the finish of my 340c. The finish seems very durable, but looks like it may be a problem to clean. In my case it won't matter much as the sub is in a corner of my room behind a couch and an end table. At first I wasn't too crazy about the feet, but they are starting to grow on me. Again, you can't see them anyway. Unfortunately I didn't opt for a veneer finish, which he would have gladly done in almost any finish. Had I gone with veneer, I think I could have seen even more of Brian's woodworking skills, as the pictures of the veneer finishes on his website are really spectacular.

I had him build me a downfiring version because I didn't want to give my cats any opportunity to damage the driver. I now think that this may have been a little paranoid, as the driver's cone is aluminum and the surround is made of pretty thick rubber. Had I built a front firing version, the sub could have been made a little smaller.

The sub was delivered to my work so I played around with it in a small conference room (probably 10' x 15'). On the opening scene of die another day (the surfing scene), my rs spl meter peaked at 110db (uncorrected) when placed about 1 meter away! The best part was when people came out to see why the stuff in their offices was rattling! You could hear (and slightly feel) the bass at the end of a hallway about 100' away! [:D] Pretty awesome first test.

I hooked it up to my system and watched a movie last night, but the movie wasn't the best test (malibu's most wanted). Not a lot of deep bass, but what there was was very clean. Also, I haven't calibrated it yet. I'll do that this weekend and put in the demo dvd I made.

All in all I am very happy with the sub and with Brian. I think the sub will only sound better once it is properly calibrated and my system is complete. BTW, my 170's (and a pair of 200's for surrounds) finally shipped yesterday! By next weekend I should be in home theater bliss.

I'd be more than happy to answer any other questions.


09-18-2003, 07:15 AM
Wow, that looks nice Derek, keep us posted. Do you mind saying how much the sub was? You wouldn't happen to be in the Phila, PA area would you? Would love to hear that sub, good luck.

09-18-2003, 07:17 AM
WOW!!! Very nice!!

OK...so what is your total setup going to be now?


09-18-2003, 10:40 AM
The sub cost $700 plus an extra $15 for an amp upgrade plus shipping from georgia to massachusetts (sorry Johnny [:)] ). The total came out to just under $750. More than a vtf-2, ufw-10 or pb-isd, but less than a vtf-3 (and much smaller). If you have Brian veneer it, I'm confident there isn't a commercial sub under $2k that will look as good. Considering I was looking at $1200+ sunfires, I think this sub was a bargin! And it sounds much better, too.

The sub took over a month to arrive, but this was mostly due to Brian at rythmik being on vacation (two weeks) and my vacation (another week). Once I told Brian to start, he had the unfinished cabinet done in two days. The rest of the time was spent on waiting for parts to arrive. I think it was worth the wait. [:)]

My complete home theater consists of:
Fronts: 170's
Center: 340c
Surrounds: 200's
Sub: Custom sealed 12" sub from Rutledge Audio Design with 380W amp
Receiver: Denon 3803
DVD: Denon DVD-1600
TV: Toshiba 42H81 with HD cable and Xbox


10-14-2003, 08:08 AM
curtis, smokey, et al.
Do you think HSU will package their new STF line with any Ascend combo??
As far as B-Stock Ascends, do they have those, and do we call to find out more abt them?? (not listed on website)

10-14-2003, 08:45 AM
Definitely call Ascend about b-stock availablity.

I read on the Hsu forum that Ascend will package the STF subs as well. You should probably call about that as well.


10-14-2003, 12:51 PM
As an owner of a VTF-2, I would like to see Hsu offer a replacement woofer with a rubber surround to replace the stock woofer that has a foam surround. As a former owner of a pair of JBL L150 towers I know first-hand that foam "rot" isn't any fun. [xx(]

10-14-2003, 01:55 PM
Ben, if you read up on the Hsu forums, they swear by the durability and longevity of their surrounds and will tell you about what was wrong with the older foam surrounds that rotted away. Reading it convinced me not to worry.

I don't think Ascend has b-stock often, but I did send a pair of CBMs to them when I did the custom veneered ones that I assume were resold as used/b-stock, but I'm not sure what they really did with them.

10-14-2003, 02:49 PM
Thanks Brad, I'll try to just enjoy the sub. [:)]

11-10-2003, 09:56 AM
The VTF-2 surround has been rubber for the past two months.

HSU Research

11-10-2003, 10:13 AM
Welcome Sasha and thanks for the info! Although I've had no issues with my VTF-2, the foam surround has always worried me a bit. Will Hsu be offering an upgrade option to those of us with the old surrounds? I've always thought of Ascend and Hsu as being partners in giving consumers quality products at reasonable prices. Visit here and post often!

11-10-2003, 11:49 AM
Sasha - I didn't realize you switched. I've seen you speak highly of the surround you have been using - why the change?

11-15-2003, 04:44 AM
Sasha, are you out there?