Subwoofers. Advantages/disadvantages?

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bxbrkrz
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Post 09 Jan 2021

You don't need to have the sub placed so close to your feet. Have it near. The lower the frequencies, the more omnidirectional they are, but placing the sub too far and you'll have a bit of latency.
The two walls are acting like you are inside a speaker cabinet. Just be aware of this.
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Mistro17
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Post 09 Jan 2021

I like to draw parallels with visual art and music to better understand what I'm working with. In computer graphics there's a term called "linear color space" to produce realistic lighting. The same color can be affected in many ways due to lighting and lighting sources in a render. The raw color would be the fundamental in sound terms. All these terms that deal with frequency and space and issues that are associated with mixing reminds me of it. For example when mixing we have to consider how the track would sound across multiple speakers and acoustic circumstances. At what level does mixing become subjective and where is the fundamental? When my set comes, I will be considering a lot due to the advice I been reading here. I have a feeling I will be overthinking where to put the subwoofer. If it sounds good to me at my computer location but not so good at the back of the room, is that an indicator of something wrong or does it really matter since no one is in the back of the room listening? If not centered under the computer table, is it ok somewhere off to the side since space is really tight in that nook? Can the placement of the sub be away from the computer table area all together and still work with the right tweaking in regard to monitors settings?

@bxbrkrz Thanks for the compliment :)

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selig
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Post 09 Jan 2021

The question is more about where to put the listening position, because the sub position will likely be relative to that position. In your space you only really have two options for the listening position, where you have it now and the opposite end of the room. The sub will most likely sound best closest to th listening position, typically under the desk in the center. Leaving some room to move it front to back by a foot or more will give you multiple options.

I just went through this process in my new space, and was surprised how different things could sound with movements of a foot or so (i have a lot of space to work with!).
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Mistro17
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Post 09 Jan 2021

selig wrote:
09 Jan 2021
The question is more about where to put the listening position, because the sub position will likely be relative to that position. In your space you only really have two options for the listening position, where you have it now and the opposite end of the room. The sub will most likely sound best closest to th listening position, typically under the desk in the center. Leaving some room to move it front to back by a foot or more will give you multiple options.

I just went through this process in my new space, and was surprised how different things could sound with movements of a foot or so (i have a lot of space to work with!).
Thanks. I was hoping that can be an option. I just watched a video on placement that gave me some more clarity. I see myself getting settled with it over some time.

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Billy+
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Post 09 Jan 2021

Q). If you use a sub is it better to use cables that are all the same length.
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moalla
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Post 10 Jan 2021

My experience with an extra 8 inch 90watt 4ohm diy sub iss, first find the right low pass frequency arround 70-80hz and set then the filter for the different outputs. Best for me at this need works the lindell 6x-500 as crossover.

But what´s the problem with such diy, vst filtered subwoofer expansion for a small room 12-14 m², the resonance at low hz, cause the amp modul has no high pass filter arround 32hz.
Especial more or less all inexpensive subs and speakers a mostly made for cinema use, so their attack and release times are bad, to mod such a thing it´s not really cool, or present.

Instead of getting a used cinema sub, I ve build myself with a OmnesAudio W8-670Z and a mivoc am 80 from the flea market, a portokasse sub.
With a transmission line port of circa 19mm height in a 26litre case.
https://www.oaudio.de/out/media/PortoSu ... auplan.pdf

I also tested it with my dbx234 xs crossover for pa use, what worked well in separating frequencys, but the whole stage of my eve audio SC205 gets lost. So if you need really more than addition for mastering you must buy more or less a active sub over 400€ from adam, eve, klein hummel, genlec etc.

But for music making with lower demands a diy sub like mine works better than most cheap music discounter stuff i would say, the best cheap subwoofer in my ears are the logitech z5500

Also a nice thing, when you read the experience of hifi enthusiasts, must be a 2.1 system build with a mini dsp 2/4 ass crossover.

have a nice time
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mcatalao
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Post 10 Jan 2021

I really prefer a balanced 2 monitor system with good bass than a 2.1 system (or even in a 5.1 for that matter so i even don't have a sub in my home cinema). I bought a Focal Alpha 80 pair that goes down to 35 Hz (and my home floor monitors are flat down to 32 Hz, so i just diverted the sub signal to them within the amp) which is pretty low for music, and at the moment i don't need a sub. Still if you go for a sub remember to setup the crossover with your monitors, so that it doesn't hit frequencies that are already being produced by your monitors. This can create an unbalanced response So stay away from any kind of sub that doesn't have a crossover filter. AS for the position, center it as much as possible as thought bass frequencies are less directional, that's not completely true for the the mid-low region and you might end with an unbalanced image.

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moalla
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Post 11 Jan 2021

Focal Alpha80 Boxen are really Bassfull, extrelmy nice for electronic music, not the best for instrumental music stuff, for my ears when i heard them in s music shop
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demt
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Post 13 Jan 2021

I can adjust the crossover frequency on my 100w sub it allmost gets up to standered mid range and Its on a independent volume controll making fiddling with it a breeze.
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Mistro17
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Post 23 Jan 2021

Just giving an update. My Presonus set arrived and I have them all hooked up. I set the monitors cutoff at 80hz and the subwoofer as well. Sounds awesome. I still have to play around with the settings to get the low end notes more clear but I accept the fact it will be a while of trial and error until I get it to taste. I also came to the conclusion it's better for me to test using songs I made in Reason vs the music I have on CDs from friends and the YouTube music videos I have because they all sound different. One song have awesome bass while the other is weak. So I figure it's more reliable to reference from raw sounds straight from my own source. I think youtube audio is hit or miss due to compression etc. from uploading. And CDs from friends are "treated" with the taste from the DJs. I notice a big difference. Any thoughts on this? I feel more confident to mix so much better now.

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O1B
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Post 24 Jan 2021

Boom! You win.

I don’t use subwoofers - yet. ... Boycotting the $$$$, and, I Vest.
But, there is no doubt, before any :redface: “release,” it must be subwoofered.
0B898E9B-534B-47AC-A478-522F140771B0.jpeg
It must feel Good to know for sure... :puf_bigsmile:
Mistro17 wrote:
23 Jan 2021
Just giving an update. ... I accept the fact it will be a while of trial and error until I get it to taste. ... I feel more confident to mix so much better now.
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selig
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Post 24 Jan 2021

Billy wrote:
09 Jan 2021
Q). If you use a sub is it better to use cables that are all the same length.
Doesn’t matter in the least.
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jam-s
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Post 24 Jan 2021

Mistro17 wrote:
23 Jan 2021
Just giving an update. My Presonus set arrived and I have them all hooked up. I set the monitors cutoff at 80hz and the subwoofer as well. Sounds awesome. I still have to play around with the settings to get the low end notes more clear but I accept the fact it will be a while of trial and error until I get it to taste. I also came to the conclusion it's better for me to test using songs I made in Reason vs the music I have on CDs from friends and the YouTube music videos I have because they all sound different. One song have awesome bass while the other is weak. So I figure it's more reliable to reference from raw sounds straight from my own source. I think youtube audio is hit or miss due to compression etc. from uploading. And CDs from friends are "treated" with the taste from the DJs. I notice a big difference. Any thoughts on this? I feel more confident to mix so much better now.
To me this sounds like your sub is feeding into different room modes depending on the root note and thus fundamental of the bass. you could check this theory by feeding in some low frequency/note and then checking the resulting volume level at different spots of your room.

The you could cross check the resulting energy distribution with a room mode calculator like this one: https://trikustik.at/en/knowledge/room- ... alculator/
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Mistro17
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Post 24 Jan 2021

jam-s wrote:
24 Jan 2021

To me this sounds like your sub is feeding into different room modes depending on the root note and thus fundamental of the bass. you could check this theory by feeding in some low frequency/note and then checking the resulting volume level at different spots of your room.

The you could cross check the resulting energy distribution with a room mode calculator like this one: https://trikustik.at/en/knowledge/room- ... alculator/
Thanks for the info. But it turns out because I been mixing with only those old monitors I was adding effects and amps to compensate before. I got rid of the amp and effects off of my EZbass for example and started from scratch tweaking the built in effects of that plugin and got a nice clean sound in the low notes. I'm gonna have to revisit a few of my tracks now to see if I over did it with effects. I'm learning to start simple and only add effects if needed.

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Mistro17
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Post 08 Feb 2021

Hey, I have another question. How close is too close for speakers or speaker cables to be near other electronic sources? My subwoofer have a low hum coming from it. I made sure to get good balanced cables and I keep the wires managed separate from the power cords. I also got a Furman SS-6B power strip. But as you can see in the image, my PC is still around 12"- 18" from all the action. Is that too close? I also have my modem near by on the other side of the wall from where the PC tower is. The hum is very low so it doesn't bother me much. This sub is supposed to go in sleep mode after 10 minutes of no audio activity and I'm a bit concerned if it's active all the time if that would have a negative impact over time. Also, would be nice to know that I have clean power going through.
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DaveyG
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Post 09 Feb 2021

Mistro17 wrote:
08 Feb 2021
Hey, I have another question. How close is too close for speakers or speaker cables to be near other electronic sources? My subwoofer have a low hum coming from it. I made sure to get good balanced cables and I keep the wires managed separate from the power cords. I also got a Furman SS-6B power strip. But as you can see in the image, my PC is still around 12"- 18" from all the action. Is that too close? I also have my modem near by on the other side of the wall from where the PC tower is. The hum is very low so it doesn't bother me much. This sub is supposed to go in sleep mode after 10 minutes of no audio activity and I'm a bit concerned if it's active all the time if that would have a negative impact over time. Also, would be nice to know that I have clean power going through.

My-RoomWIP8.jpg
Low hum is most likely to be conducted rather than radiated. Does it sound like mains hum (60Hz)?
Try systematically disconnecting stuff and try feeding the sub from a completely different source like a phone or similar.

But your real problem in that photo is the location of your workstation and the position of your speakers. If that is your final workstation position then those two side "walls" (what are they???) are going to reflect sound back at you real bad. You'll never get an accurate sound, no matter how much acoustic treatment you throw at it. If those walls cannot be removed then relocate your workstation. Also, your speakers need to be higher and a bit further apart. :thumbup:

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miyaru
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Post 09 Feb 2021

Congrats with your Presonus gear, like I wrote before, I have the "old" Eris E8 monitors, and like them very much.
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Mistro17
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Post 09 Feb 2021

miyaru wrote:
09 Feb 2021
Congrats with your Presonus gear,
Thanks. Yeah, I'm enjoying them.
DaveyG wrote:
09 Feb 2021


Low hum is most likely to be conducted rather than radiated. Does it sound like mains hum (60Hz)?
Try systematically disconnecting stuff and try feeding the sub from a completely different source like a phone or similar.

But your real problem in that photo is the location of your workstation and the position of your speakers. If that is your final workstation position then those two side "walls" (what are they???) are going to reflect sound back at you real bad. You'll never get an accurate sound, no matter how much acoustic treatment you throw at it. If those walls cannot be removed then relocate your workstation. Also, your speakers need to be higher and a bit further apart. :thumbup:

I take you calling that 3D render a photo as a compliment :D Does it matter that I have the table pulled out forward so the speakers are not "within" those walls? The room was built that way and the only outlet I have is right behind the workstation. The hum is only coming from the sub. I turn that on first and it starts seconds after powering on. How would I feed the sub from a phone etc.? And is there a minimal distance powered speakers should be from electronic sources? And I do agree the monitors should be higher. I have to pay down some of this stuff then my next investment will be monitor stands.

DaveyG
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Post 09 Feb 2021

Mistro17 wrote:
09 Feb 2021
miyaru wrote:
09 Feb 2021
Congrats with your Presonus gear,
Thanks. Yeah, I'm enjoying them.
DaveyG wrote:
09 Feb 2021


Low hum is most likely to be conducted rather than radiated. Does it sound like mains hum (60Hz)?
Try systematically disconnecting stuff and try feeding the sub from a completely different source like a phone or similar.

But your real problem in that photo is the location of your workstation and the position of your speakers. If that is your final workstation position then those two side "walls" (what are they???) are going to reflect sound back at you real bad. You'll never get an accurate sound, no matter how much acoustic treatment you throw at it. If those walls cannot be removed then relocate your workstation. Also, your speakers need to be higher and a bit further apart. :thumbup:

I take you calling that 3D render a photo as a compliment :D Does it matter that I have the table pulled out forward so the speakers are not "within" those walls? The room was built that way and the only outlet I have is right behind the workstation. The hum is only coming from the sub. I turn that on first and it starts seconds after powering on. How would I feed the sub from a phone etc.? And is there a minimal distance powered speakers should be from electronic sources? And I do agree the monitors should be higher. I have to pay down some of this stuff then my next investment will be monitor stands.
The monitoring position is the single most important thing about your room. The space behind and beside the speakers is just as important as the space in front of them. If you can't remove those walls then, in that image, swap the workstation position with that of the keyboard and extend or move the wall socket to suit. You will not regret it, I promise you.

Are you saying the sub hums with nothing connected to it? If so then it is faulty or badly-design and needs to go back to the supplier. Otherwise, temporarily set up the sub and speakers away from the rest of the stuff and feed a signal from a phone, a tablet or a 1980's Sony Walkman. OK, maybe not the Walkman, but the point is to get away from ground loops and conducted interference by feeding from a battery-powered source as a test. Does it still hum?

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Mistro17
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Post 09 Feb 2021

DaveyG wrote:
09 Feb 2021


The monitoring position is the single most important thing about your room. The space behind and beside the speakers is just as important as the space in front of them. If you can't remove those walls then, in that image, swap the workstation position with that of the keyboard and extend or move the wall socket to suit. You will not regret it, I promise you.

Are you saying the sub hums with nothing connected to it? If so then it is faulty or badly-design and needs to go back to the supplier. Otherwise, temporarily set up the sub and speakers away from the rest of the stuff and feed a signal from a phone, a tablet or a 1980's Sony Walkman. OK, maybe not the Walkman, but the point is to get away from ground loops and conducted interference by feeding from a battery-powered source as a test. Does it still hum?
Bummer, I just put in an order for a replacement after unplugging all the cables and turning it on with just power and I was still getting a hum. This indicates the sub is defective. Sweetwater is very good with customer service. Their sending me a replacement overnight as soon as the next shipment comes in in a couple days. I'm hoping the next one is good. Will report back here when I get it. Gonna just plug it in before connecting any cables and cross my fingers.

danc
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Post 10 Feb 2021

For me the most important thing to consider when setting up a sub is the following:
  • Get your cross-over frequencies between the sub and your monitors right. There is a sweet spot for each sub/monitor combo, where the cross-over works best. Be patient and get that right.
  • Get the volume levels right between sub and monitors. If you get it wrong... either your sub will dominate or the monitors will dominate and it will be unpleasant listening. You must try it at different mix level settings - you might find the levels seem right when mixing loud... but are totally off kilter when mixing at low volumes. Again - there will be a happy sweet spot that works for low and high level mixing scenarios.
For these 2-points - try a whole range of different music styles - heavy bass tracks as well as less pumping stuff - you've got to find the right balance. It's always a compromise - but there will definitely be a happy sweet spot.

Some people argue that you should exactly match make/model of monitor to subs (don't have make miss-matches) - I think that although this is true up to an extent, this is less of an issue compared to the 2 points I make above.

Oh and ensure you get a sub that has a foot-switch toggle option (or similar other feature)... so that you can easily mute the sub and run full signal through the monitors only. You don't want to keep going round the back of the sub to turn it on/off.

Plus I agree with everyone else about careful placement of the sub.
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Mistro17
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Post 16 Feb 2021

I got my replacement sub a couple days ago. It's working properly and all is well. I'm really enjoying my new set. Thanks for all the advice.

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