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Do you have a sub woofer in your monitoring setup?

Instrugramm

All of the samples? Yes please!
Two subs actually, having a pair helped me tremendously to get rid of room modes, more than most bass traps could. For mixes I first go with speakers only and then slowly add in the bass again with the subs.

Getting big subs enables you to tell what goes on in the lower regions of your mix, sometimes eq'ing way down will let you keep the timbre of bassy instruments while preserving clarity, just high-passing everything can make instruments sound stale on some occasions.

Ps. In my experience it's better to get two cheaper subs than one expensive sub, a single woofer will probably mess up the room tone (standing waves etc.).
 
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Nick Batzdorf

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Two subs actually, having a pair helped me tremendously to get rid of room modes, more than most bass traps could. For mixes I first go with speakers only and then slowly add in the bass again with the subs.

Getting big subs enables you to tell what goes on in the lower regions of your mix, sometimes eq'ing way down will let you keep the timbre of bassy instruments while preserving clarity, just high-passing everything can make instruments sound stale on some occasions.

Ps. In my experience it's better to get two cheaper subs than one expensive sub, a single woofer will probably mess up the room tone (standing waves etc.).

Manny LaCarruba, a friend who designed the best speakers I've ever heard, likes to use multiple subs in his setups.

But those are very high-end systems. My single-sub set-up (part of the Blue Sky System One) still works really well.
 
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Pier

Pier

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I always thought having two subs would cause more problems than it solves but there's a lot of people doing it. I've seen this a lot with home theater geeks.
 

babylonwaves

Darth Fader
Ps. In my experience it's better to get two cheaper subs than one expensive sub, a single woofer will probably mess up the room tone (standing waves etc.).
I have a treated room and to be honest, it didn't fully satisfy my expectations. The room is pretty small and I have two very prominent standing waves I can't kill with two walls full of bass traps. Last year I had the guy over who built the components and measured the room in the first place. I've explained to him that I wasn't happy with the lack of bass response. Especially because the speakers are fairly sizeable for the room (focal BE6 trio). He suggested to try out a sub he brought with him. We moved it around and the best position was under one speaker. The middle wasn't ideal. He also suggested to go for a sealed woofer design because those introduce less delay. Specifically he suggested two alternatives which did cost me a fraction of what I've paid normally:

- SVS SB-1000 Subs https://www.svsound.com/collections/subwoofers
- A Mini DSP OEM: https://www.thomann.de/gb/the_t.racks_dsp_4x4_mini.htm

So I ended up buying two subs.

The DSP box I use to align the subs to the mains. I have to delay the mains in order to get the subs in time and phase (about 4ms). I also use it for the crossover. The nice thing about it is that you can program it with a Windows software while you sit in the sweet spot. After a couple of hours of listening and trying I had a really pleasing result. I've tried without the DSP. Forget about it. There is a phase selector on the subs but the delay in between the mains and the subs wasn't controllable using the phase. Honestly, those €60 euros for the DSP was one of the best audio investments I've ever made. Everybody with a sub which isn't designed for the mains should try it.

I'd never go back. I can hear a full octave deeper than before and that makes a huge change to me.
 

Instrugramm

All of the samples? Yes please!
I have a treated room and to be honest, it didn't fully satisfy my expectations. The room is pretty small and I have two very prominent standing waves I can't kill with two walls full of bass traps. Last year I had the guy over who built the components and measured the room in the first place. I've explained to him that I wasn't happy with the lack of bass response. Especially because the speakers are fairly sizeable for the room (focal BE6 trio). He suggested to try out a sub he brought with him. We moved it around and the best position was under one speaker. The middle wasn't ideal. He also suggested to go for a sealed woofer design because those introduce less delay. Specifically he suggested two alternatives which did cost me a fraction of what I've paid normally:

- SVS SB-1000 Subs https://www.svsound.com/collections/subwoofers
- A Mini DSP OEM: https://www.thomann.de/gb/the_t.racks_dsp_4x4_mini.htm

So I ended up buying two subs.

The DSP box I use to align the subs to the mains. I have to delay the mains in order to get the subs in time and phase (about 4ms). I also use it for the crossover. The nice thing about it is that you can program it with a Windows software while you sit in the sweet spot. After a couple of hours of listening and trying I had a really pleasing result. I've tried without the DSP. Forget about it. There is a phase selector on the subs but the delay in between the mains and the subs wasn't controllable using the phase. Honestly, those €60 euros for the DSP was one of the best audio investments I've ever made. Everybody with a sub which isn't designed for the mains should try it.

I'd never go back. I can hear a full octave deeper than before and that makes a huge change to me.
I use two SVS (SB-2000 Pro) subs as well with my Amphions. DSP correction is a must.
 
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Pier

Pier

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The DSP box I use to align the subs to the mains. I have to delay the mains in order to get the subs in time and phase (about 4ms). I also use it for the crossover. The nice thing about it is that you can program it with a Windows software while you sit in the sweet spot. After a couple of hours of listening and trying I had a really pleasing result. I've tried without the DSP. Forget about it. There is a phase selector on the subs but the delay in between the mains and the subs wasn't controllable using the phase. Honestly, those €60 euros for the DSP was one of the best audio investments I've ever made. Everybody with a sub which isn't designed for the mains should try it.
I've always wondered about that.

Home theater receivers automatically do this when doing the setup but I've never seen this kind of stuff in pro audio.
 

Instrugramm

All of the samples? Yes please!
I've always wondered about that.

Home theater receivers automatically do this when doing the setup but I've never seen this kind of stuff in pro audio.
Actually most higher-end speaker monitor-systems (Genelec, Neumann etc.) use DSP correction. Lows are hard to manage without.
 
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Pier

Pier

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Actually most higher-end speaker monitor-systems (Genelec, Neumann etc.) use DSP correction. Lows are hard to manage without.
I guess one way is to make sure all monitors/sub are at the same distance from the sweet spot which is the recommended way by the The Recording Academy's Producers & Engineers Wing.

"In order to avoid phase cancellation and comb filtering problems, it is absolutely critical that the signal coming from all five main speakers arrive at the mixing position at the same time. This is best accomplished by having all five speakers equidistant from the mixing position. If this cannot be achieved because of the physical layout of the room, disparity in arrival time can be corrected with the use of delay."

"That said, it is our recommendation that the subwoofer be positioned in front of the mixing position, between the left and right speakers. The reason for this is that bass-heavy elements such as bass guitar and kick drum are most often placed in one or more of the front wall speakers. Positioning the subwoofer off to the side or behind the mix position therefore compromises imaging and can contribute to phase smearing."

"It is important to note that the use of delay is not recommended unless absolutely necessary. It provides a far less satisfactory solution than actually positioning and angling speakers correctly!"

Source PDF

Not saying that I agree or disagree, just sharing this from a reputable source.
 

Nick Batzdorf

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He also suggested to go for a sealed woofer design because those introduce less delay.
That's an interesting angle. I've never thought of it that way, but it makes sense - the wave bounces off the back of the cabinet, so yeah, I guess that's delay.

It's also a tighter sound if the box is sealed. That's been the argument for sealed boxes - acoustic suspension - since at least the late '60s.
 

Nick Batzdorf

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Not saying that I agree or disagree, just sharing this from a reputable source
I have no experience working with surround set-ups, but with stereo that's somewhat less critical - although EM Long's "point source" design (with concentric horns) was/is based on that concept.

My sub is about 18" behind the line between my sats, and it's fine there. (Acoustics and politics: arts of the possible rather than the ideal.)
 

Noeticus

Motion Picture Producer
As I'm working on my sub woofer presets for Zebra it made me wonder... do media composers typically have 5.1 setups or at least 2.1?

I imagine in this day an age the vast majority of music ends up in 5.1 or probably in object-based surround formats like Atmos or DTS-X.
YES, YES, YES.... for me a subwoofer is a must!
 

dgburns

Leg Ahh toe / Shpeig haw too
Agree with sub. Yes sub.

I'm adding this to my list of often-asked questions where people hope that the answer is "no" so they can be justified in not buying/having a sub. Not saying that is the case here at all, just that I see it asked so many times.

CHILLBOT'S LIST OF SELF-SCREWERY
1. Do I have to move to LA (or London, NY, etc)? No, but you're screwing yourself.
2. Do I have to learn music theory? No, but you're screwing yourself.
3. Do I have to learn to play piano? No, but you're screwing yourself.
4a. Do I have to buy omnisphere? No, but you're screwing yourself.
4b. Do I have to buy kontakt? No, but you're screwing yourself.
5. Do I have to have a sub? No, but you're screwing yourself.
Forgot one:

6. Do I have to agree with @chillbot ? No, but you’re screwing yourself

In all seriousness, I use two subs. One is a bass managed extension of my LFR fronts. The other is a dedicated LFE. The bass managed system appears to go down to around 25hz in my room where I sit. I listen to all sorts of stuff, and you wouldn’t believe how many tunes I’ve heard with offensive sub sonics- unintended things that are really not musical. And you can really tell when someone mixed something and they could actually hear down there. So much stuff is rolled off pretty high as well, there really is a variance of production philosophy on low end.
IMHO, you can have staggering amounts of low end, but the trick is to balance the rest of the spectrum. If everything is well proportioned, there is no issues on playback in range restricted systems. Where the problem comes in is when the balance is off and there’s too much of something.
 

Instrugramm

All of the samples? Yes please!
I guess one way is to make sure all monitors/sub are at the same distance from the sweet spot which is the recommended way by the The Recording Academy's Producers & Engineers Wing.

"In order to avoid phase cancellation and comb filtering problems, it is absolutely critical that the signal coming from all five main speakers arrive at the mixing position at the same time. This is best accomplished by having all five speakers equidistant from the mixing position. If this cannot be achieved because of the physical layout of the room, disparity in arrival time can be corrected with the use of delay."

"That said, it is our recommendation that the subwoofer be positioned in front of the mixing position, between the left and right speakers. The reason for this is that bass-heavy elements such as bass guitar and kick drum are most often placed in one or more of the front wall speakers. Positioning the subwoofer off to the side or behind the mix position therefore compromises imaging and can contribute to phase smearing."

"It is important to note that the use of delay is not recommended unless absolutely necessary. It provides a far less satisfactory solution than actually positioning and angling speakers correctly!"

Source PDF

Not saying that I agree or disagree, just sharing this from a reputable source.
They are in my case at the same position as my monitors but DSP correction of the subs allows you to "eq" your frequency response to be flat. Room treatment and positioning are key, DSP is the last step (I only use it on the subs, not my monitors which aren't even directly wired to the SVS').
 

chillbot

Sock Muppet
RANDOMLY INTERJECTED ADVERT:

If anyone in Los Angeles would like a sub or would like to experiment with TWO subs even, I have a JBL LSR2310SP that is yours absolutely free (and covid-free, too!) if you come pick it up at my place in La Canada Flintridge.

OK it has a nice little buzz to keep you company, I think right at 120Hz. But aside from the nice little buzz it works great! I think @Jdiggity1 made the buzz go away for a while with a bit of soldering, maybe you could ask him exactly what was done. But anyway I've decided to go with the non-buzz version, for now anyway. (Just bought another LSR310S as replacement.)

If you like to listen at a reasonable level and you tuck the sub into a corner (the buzz is more-or-less directional) you might not even notice! Maybe I'll post this in the 'for sale' section but you subby guys/gals get first dibs.
 
I guess one way is to make sure all monitors/sub are at the same distance from the sweet spot which is the recommended way by the The Recording Academy's Producers & Engineers Wing.
this can be useful for matching speakers (say the "5" of a 5.1 system) but as soon as you start comparing unalike speakers, especially with their own built in electronics/dsp, distance is only a single piece of the equation and won't get you the correct answer alone.

personally, i don't think subs are worth the hassle until you're in a situation to have a room that is acoustically in a good place, and have the proper know-how to deploy a sub beyond the "turn it on and play with the crossover till it sounds good" approach (or are paying someone to do it correctly for you). until that point i'm much happier with a set of main speakers that extend lower but originates at a coherent source.
 
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Pier

Pier

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Same here.

Sk8ter Boi (Avril Lavigne) is a good piece to check whether you need a sub. The verse goes boom on the downbeat every four bars at about 32 Hz.

If you can hear that, you have bass. But if you listen to it and have no idea what I'm talking about, you need a sub.
Oh yeah I can hear that with my HD280 Pro.

Super odd production decision to be honest.
 
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