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Galactic Soap

Small Room - Paradigm Sub 1/Persona Sub

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Hi Everyone,

 

Need some help. As some of you know I'm currently running a pair of TAD CR-1 stand-mounts in a quasi near field setup. The speakers are 1.5 meters away from me. That's about as far as I can get them while also giving them enough space from the rear and side walls. The room itself is very small - 3.5M x 3.5M. 

 

The TAD's frequency response goes down to 40hz. I thought that given the size of the room and the CR-1's almost full-range capabilities I wouldn't need a sub. I've been running the CR-1's in this configuration for the last 2 months and have been very happy. 

 

Earlier this week I inserted a 10 inch Anthony Gallo TR-3 subwoofer into the system to see what difference it made. The crossover was set to 40Hz and the volume level to halfway. It was an immediate improvement. Sound-stage improved as did my sense of enjoyment.

 

As a result I'm on the hunt for a subwoofer solution. I've been informed of a good deal on a Paradigm Persona Sub. It retails for a little over $9K. I'm thinking of deploying it alongside a DEQX PreMate Plus which I'm yet to install in my system to help with system integration. I've decided on the Persona Sub (effectively a rebadged Sub 1) due to its multiple smaller driver array which I feel (based on my limited understanding of bass in small rooms) would incorporate better with my system and room. The other contenders are the usual suspects:

- SVS 13 Ultra

- Fathom F113

- 2 x JL E112's 

 

Given the above could I ask you to call out any issues in my thinking, specifically:

- Will the Paradigm Sub 1 solution be appropriate given my room and system?

- Is there a better solution I should consider

 

Thanks

GS

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At this very high level I would go with 2 the same subwoofers.  

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I’d suggest starting with a single good sub and then optimising the location / integration via measurements. It’s quite likely that you’ll get a great outcome for a single listening position with a single sub but, if not, then add the second sub at that point.

Note, the lower the x/o point the less likely that you’ll need a second sub but, for peace of mind, I be looking for a sub for that is a current model so in the event of deciding to add a second sub it’s possible to get a matching sub

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Thanks for the coments!

 

I guess it comes down to whether i install one exceptional subwoofer (paradigm sub 1) or two very good ones (two jl e112's)...

 

If i were to install subs in stereo they would effectively be less than 500cm apart. I wonder if the benefit of stereo subs would be lost in this configuration?

 

Another reason why i am considering the sub 1 is that due to it six 8 inch drivers the sub bass distributed through the room is apparently a lot more even than dual 12's.  How true this claim is i'm not sure?

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That room is just not big enough for 2 subs - even if they are 10". I would go with a single passive radiator or sealed 10' or max 12" - SVS has some really good ones for sub $1K. Ports do not work well in small bedrooms - but if you have them you can always plug them - so, world is your oyster. Integration is more important than size. 

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16 hours ago, Galactic Soap said:

- SVS 13 Ultra

With the money you seem to have you might as well go with the newer SB4000.

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Posted (edited)

Thanks everyone

 

As is the case with changes to a system the more you explore an option the more complicated things can get.

 

I'm grappling with two issues at the moment - the size of subwoofer for my room, and the number of subwoofers in my room:

 

Two sub-woofers are better than one

I could accomodate two subwoofer's, but given the size of my room I'd prefer that I used one. Given the constraints would one subwoofer sound materially "worse" than two? 

 

The size of subwoofer

At the moment the single 10 inch sub I'm running has certainly improved SQ adding a solidity to the music. However I'm hopeful of deeper more tuneful bass. I'm confused as to whether a 13.5 (as in the case of JL audio or SVS) would be too big for my room? Or if the Paradigm Sub 1 solution with multiple subs in an array would be the better solution. Does anyone have any thoughts on this? 

 

If I were to purchase JLF113v2 or SVS SB4000 then I'd save a substantial amount of money compared to the Paradigm Sub 1. Therefore if the JL's or SVS's would give me just as good a solution given my constraints I'm happy to go down this route. 

 

 

 

Edited by Galactic Soap

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10 minutes ago, Galactic Soap said:

I'm grappling with two issues at the moment - the size of subwoofer for my room, and the number of subwoofers in my room:

 

Two sub-woofers are better than one

I could accomodate two subwoofer's, but given the size of my room I'd prefer that I used one. Given the constraints would one subwoofer sound materially "worse" than two? 

 

My take is that in the general case two subs are better than one sub (and three subs are better than two subs). But, in the case of a single listening position, it's quite feasible that one sub gives as good a result as two subs.

 

10 minutes ago, Galactic Soap said:

The size of subwoofer

At the moment the single 10 inch sub I'm running has certainly improved SQ adding a solidity to the music. However I'm hopeful of deeper more tuneful bass. I'm confused as to whether a 13.5 (as in the case of JL audio or SVS) would be too big for my room? Or if the Paradigm Sub 1 solution with multiple subs in an array would be the better solution. Does anyone have any thoughts on this? 

 

If I were to purchase JLF113v2 or SVS SB4000 then I'd save a substantial amount of money compared to the Paradigm Sub 1. Therefore if the JL's or SVS's would give me just as good a solution given my constraints I'm happy to go down this route. 

I don't think - other than physical size - that a sub can be "too big for a room" - a larger sub just does less work, presumably with less distortion, to deliver the SPL. My experience is that for capable subs (such as the set that you've described) location, integration and EQ far outweigh differences between the subs in terms of actual performance.

 

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Posted (edited)
51 minutes ago, Galactic Soap said:

The size of subwoofer

At the moment the single 10 inch sub I'm running has certainly improved SQ adding a solidity to the music. However I'm hopeful of deeper more tuneful bass.

 

If I were to purchase JLF113v2 or SVS SB4000 then I'd save a substantial amount of money compared to the Paradigm Sub 1. Therefore if the JL's or SVS's would give me just as good a solution given my constraints I'm happy to go down this route. 

 

 

 

@ your listening room size, If you're after deep tuneful bass, i would demo the SVS PC4000.  Yes, its a ported sub, but it can be run sealed via dsp calibration on the app.  When it was tuned to 16hz, at the starting scene of Mad Max Fury, Max's voice was very deep, clean, and best of all fast! I thought it was a much better sub than its sibling the SB4000, playing though the same demo.

Edited by shogo33

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Don't want to rain on your parade OP, but surely in that size room a SVS SB-2000 would suffice?

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Galactic Soap said:

The size of subwoofer

At the moment the single 10 inch sub I'm running has certainly improved SQ adding a solidity to the music. However I'm hopeful of deeper more tuneful bass. I'm confused as to whether a 13.5 (as in the case of JL audio or SVS) would be too big for my room? Or if the Paradigm Sub 1 solution with multiple subs in an array would be the better solution. Does anyone have any thoughts on this?

I think the Paradigm Sub 1 in a room that small would be hard to position.

It's still one sub.

You need multiple subs spread out to get the benefit of multiple subs and a single sub with an array of drivers won't provide the same benefit.

Edited by Satanica

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37 minutes ago, shogo33 said:

@ your listening room size, If you're after deep tuneful bass, i would demo the SVS PC4000.  Yes, its a ported sub, but it can be run sealed via dsp calibration on the app.  When it was tuned to 16hz, at the starting scene of Mad Max Fury, Max's voice was very deep, clean, and best of all fast! I thought it was a much better sub than its sibling the SB4000, playing though the same demo.

I have two older PC13 sub-woofers. The SVS cylinder sub-woofers seem to provide the most bass per cm2 of floor space invaded.

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On 10/07/2019 at 6:30 PM, Galactic Soap said:

I've decided on the Persona Sub (effectively a rebadged Sub 1) due to its multiple smaller driver array which I feel (based on my limited understanding of bass in small rooms) would incorporate better with my system and room. 

This driver arrangement won't make any real difference regarding room interaction. It replaces a single driver with a compound driver arrangement energising the room from 3 positions. In some cases, you can get a slightly better in-room response, based on effectively having 3 subs close together. The offsets can smooth each other out very slightly. The improvement is marginal. In many cases, adding subs that are metres apart doesn't offer any real advantage.

 

This kind of driver configuration does have real advantages, including:

  • opposing forces resulting in a more inert cabinet
  • avoiding a sub that "walks" (not a common problem)
  • multiple smaller drivers will often give you more thermal power handling and reduced thermal compression
  • you can get away with less excursion, which is helpful if you want to create that modern look without big visible rubber surrounds

So why doesn't everyone make subs like this? Short answer: it's a very expensive way to make a sub.

 

In a 3.5 x 3.5m room you can be fairly confident you will get a big nasty mode around 50Hz. This will tend to stick out like a sore thumb, very often masking lower bass that you might actually have but not appreciate. Sometimes you can get in-room extension well below the tuning of your speakers but have a room mode that takes your attention away. 

 

A lot of assumptions get made about getting bass right in rooms and very often they prove to be wrong. Subs don't always provide the expected advantage. 2 is not always the right number. Where and how you should bring in a sub is often not known before you investigate the room. But one assumption that is fairly safe is that you will most likely need some EQ.

 

Coming back to your question ... all of those subs will work well if you get the integration right. Choosing the sub is the fun part and easy part!

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Recommend you ask shops willing to provide 2 or 3 make/models of different sizes to trial for a weekend.

Get sealed units.

Have a play with 1 sub, then 2 (even if they are different make/model) or more to get a feel of the differences in your room.

 

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