Did you ever buy too much bass?

I talk a lot about bass and integration of subwoofers in a system and I realized that I need to hear more about the experiences auidphiles have when they go buy speakers and put them in a room.  Did you look at specs?  Did you audition in the home?  Did you end up with too little or too much bass compared to what you were expecting??


Back in the day I built 11 subwoofer’s. One pair, with 18” drivers and three thousand watts,  actually broke three out of four panes of glass in my apartment. today I have but one subwoofer, a SB2000 Pro from SVS and it’s more than enough 😄

@curiousjim  Your efficiency at 20Hz must have been pretty incredible.  😂 Guess you really did pressurize the room.

Tight, fast, articulate bass is clean bass (or is it the other way around) and that's what I get with four subs.  I have a SWARM system and the bass helps mids and highs.  No boominess, no sludge, no heaviness.  The four sub recommendation is some of the best advice I ever received.

... Did you look at specs?  Did you audition in the home?  Did you end up with too little or too much bass compared to what you were expecting??

Specs-wise I know my dual DIY subs pretty much through-and-through (over a year of research). The intention was hitting the targets of high efficiency as well as extension, yet without one compromising the other too severely; +100dB's of sensitivity would've meant either an impractical size factor or - with tapped horns, the principle behind my subs - that the lower knee (i.e.: tune) would've been impacted. Conversely a tune below 20-25Hz would impact efficiency and also a potentially blown-up size factor - Hoffman's Iron Law, and all that jazz. Even though the tune ended up just below 25Hz, a good compromise vs. 97dB sensitivity, we're still talking 20cf. volume per cab - not for the faint hearted. That's the price of efficiency. 

Capacity-wise such a subs combo could bend the doors in a domestic space if given a proper run for it, but (to me at least) gobs of capacity is really there to provide loads of headroom, not challenge structural integrity. The final implementation, actively via DSP through the whole frequency range, is still about a balanced presentation, yet with the visceral, low distortion ease and immersive quality such a subs setup can deliver. Moreover, the cleaner the bass (still provided proper implementation) the more it can, and even should be gained in level to give music the foundation it really (and ideally) needs. 

Naturally my mains are also high efficiency (the MF/HF horn section even very high eff.), but they were never meant to play bass below 80-90Hz being they're high-passed rather steeply here, and from the were the subs take over down to ~20Hz. I never tried them at home prior to purchase, but bought them from a cinema in Germany (they're pro cinema speakers) - initially as an experiment. At a later juncture I replaced the MF/HF horn with the large format ditto (though with the same comp. driver) meant for the same system, and as which it was originally conceived as a design in the later 80's for up to large cinema auditoriums. Thankfully it all turned out well and became a permanent addition since - the wonders of active DSP route and an excellent design to begin with. 

Why something this large in a home environment - certainly less eff. and size could do, right? Indeed, many ways to skin your cat, but it wouldn't be the same. Once exposed to a wholly effortless sound radiation field the height of +6ft., a point source from ~600Hz on up and a smooth radiation pattern over the cross-over frequency + subs augmentation to follow through with high eff. all the way down to their tune, it's really hard to go back to something.. less. To each their own.