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Thread: Where dat bass??

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2023
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    3

    Default Where dat bass??

    This post could be a tad premature but I just wanted to throw it out there.

    Took delivery of the Sierra-2EX V2s yesterday and finally got things all setup this morning for my first listen.

    Room is roughly L=12', W=20', H=8'

    Speakers are 8' apart and I'm sitting 9' away. Speakers roughly 20" from back wall.

    I first put on a couple of Blue Note Jazz records (Oblique and Speak No Evil).

    Everything sounds delicious compared to my previous speakers (PMC FB1+). The only thing that was missing was the standup Bass. And I was a little surprised by that given all the reviews I've read.

    Are those low notes something these speakers won't dig out or is it more a matter of break-in, these being right out the box?

    Anyway, that RAAL tweeter makes those horns and strings and piano sound so so natural and textured. Very new territory for me since these are my fist ribbon tweeter speakers.

    -Mike

    *edit: Amp = 350w McIntosh and matching preamp.
    Last edited by DinaMoe; 11-03-2023 at 09:04 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
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    Default Re: Where dat bass??

    I haven't heard the PMC FB1+, but it is a floor standing transmission line speaker. and I would imagine its got great bass.
    -curtis

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Location
    Central NC
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    132

    Default Re: Where dat bass??

    Room modes. Small rooms have 'em -- peaks and valley's in the frequency response where the listener is sitting. Especially below the Schroeder frequency.

    You could treat the room (bass traps, absorption, diffusion). You could move your seating position. You could move the speakers (maybe decrease the separation between them a bit, etc.). Or my favorite, buy a pair (not one, but two) subwoofers and locate them where they need to be (almost certainly not underneath your new bookshelf speakers, but somewhere where they will even out the peaks and nulls you are hearing; see: "sub crawl"). Or, of course, a combination of these techniques.

    Or you could use a program like REW (Room EQ Wizard) to listen to the room through a calibrated microphone and then draw graphs showing you exactly what the problems are. Once you learn it, and how to interpret the results, which I can't lie can be daunting for people who aren't used to it, you can act on the results and work your way into a sweet sounding room.

    The thing about moving to better speakers is that they let you hear everything better. The music / movie source material, but also the flaws like your room response. It's a PITA, but it's what happens to most of us.
    "If it sounds good, it is good." -- Duke Ellington

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Houston, Texas
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    1,387

    Default Re: Where dat bass??

    In case the OP hasn't seen it, CarloM reply to same question on AVS...

    Hi Mike, I'd run some frequency sweeps just to make sure you didn't get a defective unit (or it wasn't jostled too harshly in transit, because UPS/FEDEX love to see how much abuse my packages can take).

    I did google the frequency range of upright bass and it can go as low as 30hz. For the bookshelf 2EX V2 according to their published Klippel NFS measurements, the "knee" of the bass response (where it starts to dip downwards) is in the 60-70hz region, anechoic. But the "estimated in room" reads relatively flat to 50hz, but that's all it is, an estimated in room response which can (and will) vary greatly from room to room.

    So you should be getting good response for the upright bass for most of its notes, but when the player goes to its lowest notes (in the 30-40hz) that will be well after the falloff for these bookshelves.

    The other thing to check may be if your room has bass nodes. For example, when I was auditioning the ELX and the BMR HT Towers in my living room, I thought maybe the HT Towers were damaged in transit. Turns out my living room has a nasty 40hz bass node for the HT Towers, and for whatever reason it didn't affect the ELXs anywhere near as dramatically. When I ran test sweeps for the HTs, from about 38-42hz the bass fell off a cliff. It's an oddly shaped room with lots of furniture.

    But when I moved the HTs to a different, more sonically optimized room, the bass came roaring back to life.
    * LG OLED65E6P, BenqHT2050A
    * Anthem AVM90, Rogue ST100, VTV Pascal 7 ch
    * Sierra Towers/Horizon (all ELX RAAL), S2EXv2 surrounds, HTM200SEx4 heights, Rythmik E15HPx2
    * VPI Classic 1+ (VTA & Fatboy Gimbal), PE Eagle/RR, VAS NOVA, Soundsmith Paua, Manley Chinook, Bob's Devices SUT, SugarCube 1 mini
    * Oppo 203 & 103D, EverSolo DMP-A6
    * miniDSP Flex, Audiosensibility & Blue Jeans cables, Symposium & Isoacoustics, GIK
    * For RDJ: Anthem MRX720, Sierra LX, Luna Duo v2 center, CXNv2, TBD

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Just outside Pearland, TX
    Posts
    297

    Default Re: Where dat bass??

    As others have noted, the first thing you might want to check out is your room. Rooms modes and nodes are weird and just because you didn't notice a mode or node with one speaker doesn't mean you might not have an issue with a different speaker.

    But honestly it might also be the speaker.

    The S2EXv2 is a great speaker at its price point, and it has solid bass response for a bookshelf speaker, but that last bit "for a bookshelf speaker" matters. It's still a ported bookshelf speaker with a 6" driver. I'm a bassist and with the EXs I run a sub because I miss those 35-45Hz fundamentals that the EXs don't quite deliver.

    So, yes, the EX probably is bass-shy compared to a transmission line floorstander like the one you replaced. It's not hard to believe that the Sierra wins in terms of treble and midrange performance but does not compete on bass. IIRC PMC is particularly proud of their transmission line design so you may be comparing the best thing about the old speaker to an area where the EX is good for its class but not great in an absolute sense.

    Incidentally, while I use a sub with my EXs, I listen to the Sierra LXs without a sub and I actually have to EQ the response around 50Hz down because of bad room mode at that frequency. I also didn't need to do that with the EXs. The Sierra LX is the first bookshelf I've ever heard that really feels like a full-range speaker. The EX is a great speaker but it simply does not dig as deep. If you're opposed to a sub I think the LX is the superior speaker.
    Luna Duo V2 LR, Titan Horizon V2, and Rythmik L22 & L12 in HT, Sierra-LXs in study, S-2EXs and Duo V2 C in bedroom, S-1 NrTs in dining room, S-1s at work, HTM-200s in kitchen. Brother owns CMT-340s and dad has a pair of CBM-170s.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
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    Manhattan Beach, California
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    Default Re: Where dat bass??

    Incidentally, while I use a sub with my EXs, I listen to the Sierra LXs without a sub and I actually have to EQ the response around 50Hz down because of bad room mode at that frequency. I also didn't need to do that with the EXs. The Sierra LX is the first bookshelf I've ever heard that really feels like a full-range speaker. The EX is a great speaker but it simply does not dig as deep. If you're opposed to a sub I think the LX is the superior speaker.
    FWIW...with my LX's in my room, I get good response to the low 30's hz.
    -curtis

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2023
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Where dat bass??

    No doubt about it, it is my terrible room that's the problem. Not the speakers.

    Way to boomy in the room. My previous speakers had a front port so it wasn't effected by the close proximity to the back wall like the 2EX is with it's back firing port.

    Yesterday, I decided to stuff a sock into both speaker ports to see if that had any positive effect and that knocked down the boom tremendously. Almost entirely I would say. I just placed an order for the Ascend Q plugs.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2023
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Where dat bass??

    Wanted to circle back here to give a quick update.

    I have found the bass. And it's good, deep, tight bass. Only boomy on certain recordings due in part to my listening room.

    I could not be more thrilled with these speakers. The RAAL ribbon tweeter (first ribbon tweeter speaker of my life) is a absolute joy. I enjoy looking at them too. Wonderful cabinet work (piano black).

    Extremely satisfied customer!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Houston, Texas
    Posts
    1,387

    Default Re: Where dat bass??

    Thanks for the follow-up. Glad things are sorted for you and your room....

    I started my Ascend journey with S2's (now S2EXv2) being used as surrounds as I moved to the Towers with RAAL (v1), which were subsequently upgraded to ELX... Dave, please no more upgrade kits, at least for the speakers I have, for awhile :-)
    * LG OLED65E6P, BenqHT2050A
    * Anthem AVM90, Rogue ST100, VTV Pascal 7 ch
    * Sierra Towers/Horizon (all ELX RAAL), S2EXv2 surrounds, HTM200SEx4 heights, Rythmik E15HPx2
    * VPI Classic 1+ (VTA & Fatboy Gimbal), PE Eagle/RR, VAS NOVA, Soundsmith Paua, Manley Chinook, Bob's Devices SUT, SugarCube 1 mini
    * Oppo 203 & 103D, EverSolo DMP-A6
    * miniDSP Flex, Audiosensibility & Blue Jeans cables, Symposium & Isoacoustics, GIK
    * For RDJ: Anthem MRX720, Sierra LX, Luna Duo v2 center, CXNv2, TBD

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