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 Post subject: Subs and surrounds
PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2018 8:40 pm 
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Location: Ottawa, ON, CA
Not sure if this belongs in the HT section, since it involves speakers which would do dual duty I'll put it here.

I'm going through the contortions of setting up a HT system that will also be used for a game console and listening to music. From what I've been able to gather, it's important to match the fronts (L-C-R) speakers, but sub(s) and surrounds not so much. Budget is pretty limited, so most everything will be bought used.

My fronts are Klipsch RF5 with an RC42 centre (I may upgrade the centre soon, as it doesn't match well). Room is 17.5x16, with the system on the one short wall. Opposite is open into a kitchen. Long walls are one blank and the other windows and fireplace, so I can't set up the seating to allow the system on the one blank long wall, and the FP makes it impossible to set the TV up.

The opening into the kitchen has short walls on either side. What sort of surrounds should I use - plain bookshelves, bipole or dipole - if they are mounted on the wall beside and slightly behind the seating area? Should I look for Klipsch to match, or is extension more important (recently read an article that said best results come when the surrounds can go as low as 60Hz or at least to match the fronts where the sub takes over.)

Next question is sub - for now I'm looking for one, but may add another as budget permits. What characteristics should I look for, and what readily available brands are recommended? I'm not looking for top of the range, just decent performance for movies, games and music. There's a REL T3 available in the classifieds, but with an 8" woofer and REL's interesting way to integrate, is it a good choice compared to the abundant Kijiji Klipsch and Paradigm and other 12" subs available?


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 Post subject: Re: Subs and surrounds
PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2018 9:33 pm 
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Location: 53˚27'46"N 2˚17'28"W
Regarding the subs, I'd recommend getting as many as you can budget for. For the surround speakers, if there is enough space between the speaker and the rear wall go for bipole.

Since this is a casual system, I think you'd get better bang for the buck on the subs.

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 Post subject: Re: Subs and surrounds
PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2018 9:51 pm 
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How much space is enough for a dipole?

Does it matter what sort of subs? Would 2-3 8" subs be preferable to a single 12-15"?


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 Post subject: Re: Subs and surrounds
PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2018 9:57 pm 
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I think for your purpose that multiple smaller (8") subs would be better than one larger one. I can't imagine that very high SPL is a priority, but even if it is, multiple subs is the way to go. And I can't remember the literature, but if you have 5+ feet to work with the a bipole can work well for the rears.

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 Post subject: Re: Subs and surrounds
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2018 1:53 am 
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He didn't notice yet.
Dipole.


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 Post subject: Re: Subs and surrounds
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2018 10:30 am 
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16 x17.5 is a pretty large space to fill. Plus with the opening, It got me thinking I would be looking for a couple efficient large open port subs. Minimum 10"s. As large as dual 15"s, maybe even three. Something like the little sealed rel would get swallowed up in that space. Yes it will fill in some lower notes and sound fine, but don't be expecting much impact.

Your space might prove to be problematic and have many nodes also, and make achieving good bass a bit more of a challenge.

What would you like your end result to sound like, how do you want it to impact you, do you want to feel sound effects in your gut as well as hear them?

Multiple subs are a good way to be thinking. And bang for buck. Hard to beat a couple passive subs with a pro amplifier/crossover to run them. Your money will go a much longer way.


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 Post subject: Re: Subs and surrounds
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2018 11:12 am 
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wtf22 wrote:
He didn't notice yet.
Dipole.


Sorry, I'm not going to try and decypher that. Could you expand?

SPL is not going to be high most of the time. We'd be watching movies either as a family or after the kids are in bed, and using the existing speakers it was loud enough that it would be a problem after lights out. I'm not looking to blow my hair back (what's left of it) or get the IMAX experience, just want the sound to be full and complete, with surround effects as they were intended, but not necessarily physical.

Room nodes may be a bit harder to address, though I will be using room corrrection (ARC to be exact). I may have some objections from the Ministry of the Interior when it comes to treatments.

For the surround speakers, there's only about 2 feet (maybe 3) from where they would mount in line with the seating to where the residual walls come in. If I can play a bit with angles I could change that some, but that remains to be seen.

-- 10 Nov 2018 14:22 --

An addendum question regarding subs: is there a rule of thumb about mixing and matching? With multiples should they all be same size, make and model, or can one just catch as catch can and mix at will (as long as each sub performs to spec)?


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 Post subject: Re: Subs and surrounds
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2018 11:36 am 
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Location: Ontario, ON, CA
Old_School wrote:
wtf22 wrote:
He didn't notice yet.
Dipole.


Sorry, I'm not going to try and decypher that. Could you expand?

SPL is not going to be high most of the time. We'd be watching movies either as a family or after the kids are in bed, and using the existing speakers it was loud enough that it would be a problem after lights out. I'm not looking to blow my hair back (what's left of it) or get the IMAX experience, just want the sound to be full and complete, with surround effects as they were intended, but not necessarily physical.

Room nodes may be a bit harder to address, though I will be using room corrrection (ARC to be exact). I may have some objections from the Ministry of the Interior when it comes to treatments.

For the surround speakers, there's only about 2 feet (maybe 3) from where they would mount in line with the seating to where the residual walls come in. If I can play a bit with angles I could change that some, but that remains to be seen.

-- 10 Nov 2018 14:22 --

An addendum question regarding subs: is there a rule of thumb about mixing and matching? With multiples should they all be same size, make and model, or can one just catch as catch can and mix at will (as long as each sub performs to spec)?


Not you, silly


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 Post subject: Re: Subs and surrounds
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2018 11:44 am 
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I'm the one trying to get information. If you have some to offer, it's welcome. If you're criticising what has been offered so far, it would be nice if you made it clear. Silly.


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 Post subject: Re: Subs and surrounds
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2018 11:46 am 
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Sorry for being silly.
The technical information is probably correct but I was drawing attention to the spelling error.
I will stay out of it, please continue.


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 Post subject: Re: Subs and surrounds
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2018 11:51 am 
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I'd get another pair of RF5 and stand them in the corners on either side of the opening into the kitchen. Skip the added expense and integration issues with the subs. Pending approval of the Ministry of the Interior, of course.... :wink:

disclaimer: I do no now, nor have I ever had a proper HT setup. But I've heard basic sub-less ones that were nonetheless impressive despite their simplicity and modest cost. More important than brute force is control of room nodes, IMO. Four identical full range speakers will achieve this better than 2 with a sub tucked somewhere conveniently out of view.

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 Post subject: Re: Subs and surrounds
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2018 1:45 pm 
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Location: mississauga, ON, CA
Old_School wrote:
wtf22 wrote:
He didn't notice yet.
Dipole.


Room nodes may be a bit harder to address, though I will be using room corrrection (ARC to be exact). I may have some objections from the Ministry of the Interior when it comes to treatments.

-- 10 Nov 2018 14:22 --

An addendum question regarding subs: is there a rule of thumb about mixing and matching? With multiples should they all be same size, make and model, or can one just catch as catch can and mix at will (as long as each sub performs to spec)?


As long as they integrate, and will if they are good subs, there size doesnt matter. With any help from the room and treatments. Some times mixing sub sizes even works to your advantage, in terms of room tuning.

Getting creative with room treatments and audio to have the best of both if a person is so inclined. Its fun to incorporate everything as stealth as possible. Effective treatments can be sitting out in the open and no one will realize its true purpose when its blending in as part of every day decors. Traps are a little harder to disguise but there are ways, and substitutes that help tame response.

This looks like it could slip past a sharp eyed interior decorator.


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 Post subject: Re: Subs and surrounds
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2018 6:27 pm 
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That's interesting (the "sub chair") :D

Not sure we can manage something similar, though maybe as an end table (which many subs look like anyway).

I guess I'll just take on what you guys have offered and see what I can do.

Rip, another pair of RF 5s would both be hard to find, and hard to position, Interior Minister's approval aside. The way the furniture all fits makes wall mounting the most practical for the surrounds.


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 Post subject: Re: Subs and surrounds
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2018 8:34 pm 
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Old_School wrote:
That's interesting (the "sub chair") :D

Not sure we can manage something similar, though maybe as an end table (which many subs look like anyway).

I guess I'll just take on what you guys have offered and see what I can do.

Rip, another pair of RF 5s would both be hard to find, and hard to position, Interior Minister's approval aside. The way the furniture all fits makes wall mounting the most practical for the surrounds.


I seen people do them in the foot ottoman and the coffee tables, its a popular one a search will pull up many examples.

I like the ottoman idea. A single sealed or open nicely built and braced bin might sound to your liking and deliver enough oomf. Build an enclosure as usual then pad and upholster it to match the sofa and chairs viola, what ugly stereo equipment wifey? Of course a big cubed coffee table is just as effective.

Although not as stealthy, with clear glass anyhow. I do like this approach https://www.avsforum.com/forum/155-diy- ... build.html

The owner did a great job on this higher end table.


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 Post subject: Re: Subs and surrounds
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2018 6:20 am 
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Location: 53˚27'46"N 2˚17'28"W
Those sub end tables are genius, and in a system where space is shared should really be given thought more often.

Old_School, I was going to double up on ripblade's recommendation to match the mains as your surrounds, but since you've stated there might be a procurement issue I won't :wink: , so now you're aiming your focus at wall mounting the rears and there are a few in the Ottawa area:


https://www.canuckaudiomart.com/details ... lc100mint/
https://www.canuckaudiomart.com/details ... free-ship/

When I had the Maggies in play there was a pair of 8" isobaric subs (on loaner from rip himself, a kind soul) utilized to fill in the bass that was missing. These little things had no problem at all filling the room at listening levels upwards of 95db - this was in a space 23'W and 28-35'L. I'd have confidence that if you were to collect 3-4 small subs and managed to integrate them into the room (a la the end table) you'd be able to 1. get the output a low frequencies you want, 2. manage the modal tendencies more effectively, and 3. have an easier time with the room correction software.

If you're handy enough, it might be easier to purchase a kit or the parts and build the subs yourself.

What is your budget for the rears and subs?

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