Subwoofers suggestion?


I don’t have small speakers and my speakers can do bass well, but years back, and with other speakers, I had a subwoofer and lingering memories make me occasionally think that a sub or two might do wonders in my system. (I owned a pair of Maggies MG2.6R’s and ran them with a Sunfire sub). My present speakers are Revel Studio 2’s. I’m aware that a pair of subs is a superior way to go but for cost reasons I’d likely buy one now and add a 2nd one down the road. Suggestions are cheerfully awaited!
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The advantages of using four are so great that instead of buying one you would be better off with four cheaper ones. The budget for a Swarm setup of four subs is only about $3k, or less if you DIY. Or you could go with four cheap powered subs. Whatever. Just keep in mind that when it comes to subs how many is far more important than which one.

     I agree with millercarbon that 3-4 will provide the best performance but you'll begin to get very good bass at a dedicated listening position with 2 subs.  The SVS SB-1000 (sealed sub) or PB-1000 (ported sub) are both very good subs at a great price right now of $500 for either one and $950 for two.  These will both perform like $1,000+ subs.  The Hsu are very good subs, too but you'll be paying much more.  The SVS ported sub will have deeper extension but the SVS sealed sub will probably be best for music only.


Tim

What is your budget? Are you going to run your main speakers full range or high pass them?
Do you need line level or speaker level options?
Budget is undetermined. I’d run my speakers full range, line level inputs 
I'm a Vandersteen fan, but I have a friends who aren't, but love his subs. His implementation is different than most.  He designed his crossover and amp to mimic the sound of your main amp.  That's rare, but it's why his subs blend so well with other speakers.  For any sub, you really need to have it overlap by an octave to be coherent.  

Using 4 subs is great if you can fit them in the room.  You can smooth things out with any set of 4 matching subs.  

the Vandersteen's use an 11 band analog EQ (you can still hear a digital EQ no matter how good it is) to smooth out the bass.  It's the same set up that I have on my Quatro's.  It works very very well as I have a difficult room.  

Next on my personal list are the REL subs.  
I second the Rhythmik recommendation. I have two 15" in my home theatre. They are fast, clean, tonally accurate and present no flab. They’re superb subs.
Interesting. I have the Revel Salon 2's. I love the speakers but miss the low end impact that that some of my older speakers had with larger woofers. I added a JL Audio Fathom v2. I figured this would work for me since I only listen to stereo at 1 listening position. In theory this works. In reality, not so much. Finding the correct placement in the room for 1 sub had it in unacceptable locations. Buying another Fathom ($4000) for my medium sized room is just too expensive. Like some of the advise above, I am going to sell the Fathom and buy 2 reasonably priced SVS subs. Live and learn. Good luck!  
Hello tobor007,

     I agree using two JL Fathoms is cost prohibitive and using two SVS SB or PB 1000 subs at $500/each would likely provide better bass response in your medium sized room and for significantly less money.  
    An even better option would be using a complete 4-sub distributed bass array (DBA) system like the Audio Kinesis Swarm or Debra for $2,800 if you have the space for four 1' x 1' x 28" 44lb subs in your room.  I'm certain this would provide state of the art bass performance in any room and with any pair of main speakers. 
     I use this type of bass system in my 23' x 16' x 8' room with a pair of 6' x 2' Magnepans with spectacular results.  This scientifically proven concept actually works extremely well and I know I'll never need to buy another sub or bass system no matter what room I use it in and what main speakers I use.  Here's an Absolute Sound review of the Swarm system that provides a very accurate description of what to expect:  

https://www.theabsolutesound.com/articles/audiokinesis-swarm-subwoofer-system/


Tim
Listening last night it struck me again how much better the bass is with the Swarm subs. On Janice Ian Breaking Silence almost every track has a bass line that was always interesting to follow but now with the Swarm it is downright striking how much more articulate it is and how much more deep and smooth and even the bass lines are. Before with just one sub it was easy to hear the initial pluck of the string, but with no idea just how much of the fundamental was missing! The bass in Dire Straits Ride Across the River reveals even more surprises. I honestly had no idea, pre-DBA, how awesome that track sounds! 
 
Hello millercarbon,

     Yes, the 4-sub Swarm distributed bass array system continually amazes me, too.  I've most recently been surprised by the very good bass response and 5.1 surround sound content on several commercials on my Xfinity cable system's high definition channels, very deep bass with hi-res sound quality.  I even notice the background music on many HGTV shows has very good bass performance, very good sq and is quite entertaining.  
    And yes, the quality of the bass response on music sources is consistently near state of the art.  I still don't think most non DBA users have a good understanding about how extremely well the 4-sub DBA concept actually performs.

Enjoy,
 Tim
Zavato with the Revels two good sub like the JL Labs Fathoms placed in the corners of the front wall will do just fine. They have built in room control and you will be able to adjust them perfectly for your listening position. Buy one now and the other down the road.
Tobor007,

Before you sell your F series sub I suggest you investigate the possibility of using its rear panel XLR output to another brand of subwoofer as a slave. This would be a huge shortcoming if you couldn't. 

Another of JL Audio's design shortcomings are in its limited manual crossover adjustments. To a get a better understanding read the setup procedures for their stand alone CR-1 crossover. These adjustments should be available by remote control in all their F and G series units. These adjustments elevate the subs ability to subtly begin the crossover at a higher point while better matching the main speakers bass presentation through the crossover region and on down. Multi-band adjustments also allow for a wider latitude of lower frequency gain than simply selecting a crossover point and turning the gain down until you can't discern the crossover. 

These adjustments are not a substitute for the ability of multiple subwoofers to reduce room nodes. At the same time a room full of subs will not magically provide this level of refined output. 

I slaved a F113 v1 from a Velodyne DD-18 which did have these adjustments and have been refined in their Plus series. On the Velodyne Frequency Response and Parameters software screen we adjusted the parametric filter frequency, level, and Q going to the F113. I'm guessing the JL v1 DRO did not address these parameters, I'm not sure about the v2 ADRO. The CR-1 may cover some of these adjustments and use a different nomenclature.

Whatever, the results were outstanding for the F113v1 in my room.
The F series is incredibly potent and very closely matched the output of my DD-18. If you used the crawl test method to locate the sub consider an alternative node location. I think there's a lot to try before you sell. Good luck with it.