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Author Topic: NYC Subwoofer Shootout 2007 Results Part II  (Read 58684 times)

Ivan Beaver

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NYC Subwoofer Shootout 2007 Results Part II
« on: February 02, 2007, 08:14:38 pm »

How many computers does it take to run a shootout?
index.php/fa/7766/0/
6 in this photo, and there were more there, but they seemed to gather in this area.

Remember the days when you couldn't find a computer near audio guys?  And they said audio would never become digital?

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For every complicated question-there is a simple- easy to understand WRONG answer.

Can I have some more talent in the monitors--PLEASE?

Ivan Beaver
dB Audio & Video Inc.
Danley Sound Labs

Jeff Permanian

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Re: NYC Subwoofer Shootout 2007
« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2007, 10:48:14 pm »

That was fun, when and where is the next shootout? Has a shootout for tops ever been organized?
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Paul Bell

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Re: NYC Subwoofer Shootout 2007
« Reply #2 on: February 03, 2007, 12:30:04 am »

A very wise man and engineer, Tom McCauley, taught me that you need to close your eyes and simply listen to the music. Don’t start thinking what’s in the box, how many drivers, rubber surround or cloth, Neo or Ferrite, whatever. How did it sound? Does it really matter how many drivers and what size is in the box? Did the box attain it’s design goal of output level and frequency response? Did it sound good? This conversation came about after a lost sale due to a certain high excursion woofer having a santopreen surround. All this talk of the numbers, measurements, yadda yadda, are fine. Good, do the testing. The real test is my ears. The first thing they teach you in Smaart class is to use your ears as the final judge of the sound regardless of the measurements.

The subwoofer shootout was organized by me because I personally wanted to see who was the best in distortion, response and output. It was good to also have the smaller boxes participate, they fill a very important segment of the smaller gigs and installs.

Years ago, I experienced BASSMAXX for the first time. I was blown away. For many years, I’ve witnessed other people as well as competitors dispute the specifications published by David Lee. I’ll admit, there are some speakers on the market that also have some pretty good looking numbers, the Adamson T21, Meyer 700-HP, Danley Sound Lab cabinets and the EM Acoustic Quake come to mind.

On a personal level, I need to own and offer my customers the very best in low frequency. With all the claims and testimonies that “ours is “better” than yours”, I had the need to do a real, full on head to head comparison. Good thing that other sound guys wanted to do the same, a sub shootout would really suck if I was there alone. As it turned out, many others wanted to know the answers to some of my very questions. Day one had forty guys show up!

The Adamson wasn’t available, they opted not to participate. I would hazard a guess that they would rather not put their big gun sub up against anything in a head to head shootout. Remember the first sub shootout where EAW was spanked? They’ll never do a shootout again. I have an install in NYC with a quad stack of 700-HP’s. Loud? Yup. Good? Sure. For the money spent could the customer have done better? You betcha, as well as using just two of something else. Then again, front loaded dual 18 subs seem to have a limit set by nature and physics on how loud they go and how low they’ll play regardless of design or power. The Danley cabinets look really good. They sound really good. Tom has certainly done his long division. The EM’s? Well, I’ve been hearing that they are the baddest of the bad. If any of these cabinets were better than my over rated BASSMAXX boxes, I’d have to jump the fence to that brand.

As it turned out, my Z5000 boxes, while very good, aren’t the “best.” I would actually say in shear output, the EM Quakes were better across the low frequency bandwidth. I know the measured numbers said the Z5000 was louder, the Quakes seemed to be louder at a lower frequency. We'll see when the numbers are posted. Again, I'm going by my ears. Perhaps the Z5000 sounds better because the Quakes are a horn sub design and sound like, well, a horn sub. The Z5000's certainly have this strange cancellation behind them that I’ve never heard before. As a reminder, I’ve never heard these boxes in the quad 10 configuration with the sealed sides before the shootout.

On to the Trips. Wow, I’ve never realized that they were this much better. The venue has a pair of Trips installed upstairs, a few of those at the event saw them. Going head to head was the true test. The Quakes were loud and pounding. They were obviously driven to their absolute limit, they did die trying. Two dead drivers. If anything, the max SPL on the Quakes attained at the shootout was beyond their safe operating range. Perhaps with 3 less DB, they would survive. The Trip cabinets out performed the Quakes by a wide margin as well as going lower in frequency. They survived the test, they are now in another venue on a demo. While being louder and lower, they just sounded better, more like a front loaded box than a horn. The Quakes still sound like a horn with all the coloration and peaks that horn subs are known for.

In my conclusion, my six Z5000 cabinets are for sale. I have several offers. David has the Duce cabinet, two thirds the size of the Trip with two drivers. He’s working on a high power, high excursion Neo driver that will handle like 3,000 watts. Given the (proven) accuracy of David’s claims, I’ll say they will handle the power. With these drivers at the right power level, the new Duce may have the same or almost the same output as a standard ferrite Trip as we’ve heard them. He’s also going over to light weight ply for the cabinet innards. I’ll be ordering these cabinets. I simply cannot haul around the Trip boxes and the Duce is the answer. I can see myself using two or three Duces per side for a 5,000 person show. That’ll be along with three QSC Powerlight 9.0 amps.

I’ll be posting more as the readings are shown and the discussions proceed.

Again, a big thanks to all that attended, sent gear or provided test gear and their time and expertise. This was a giant world wide group effort, we all did it, I just got the ball rolling. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I’ll never do another shootout!
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Paul Bell
PBell Sound New York City
paulATpbellsound.com
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McCauley, BASSMAXX, APB DynaSonics, QSC, Ashly, DBX, Rane Digital, Rapco, Faital Pro

Gareth James

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Re: NYC Subwoofer Shootout 2007
« Reply #3 on: February 03, 2007, 07:48:07 am »

Elliot, the TH-215 died also? According to the specs its 1400w continuous, 2800w program not 2000? Again I'm suprised the box died when the amp wasn't even clipped or near clipping.

Unless there is something I'm not seeing I wouldn't have thought either of the two Danleys would have been pushed to breaking point on that amp that far from clipping...something doesn't seem right.
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Elliot Thompson

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Re: NYC Subwoofer Shootout 2007
« Reply #4 on: February 03, 2007, 08:03:44 am »

Gareth James wrote on Sat, 03 February 2007 12:48

Elliot, the TH-215 died also? According to the specs its 1400w continuous, 2800w program not 2000? Again I'm suprised the box died when the amp wasn't even clipped or near clipping.

Unless there is something I'm not seeing I wouldn't have thought either of the two Danleys would have been pushed to breaking point on that amp that far from clipping...something doesn't seem right.



No it didn't die.

Read my review on page two

http://srforums.prosoundweb.com/index.php/mv/msg/20431/18422 8/83/#msg_184228

Then, read the reply I wrote to Tim.

Best Regards,
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Elliot

Gareth James

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Re: NYC Subwoofer Shootout 2007
« Reply #5 on: February 03, 2007, 02:34:15 pm »

Elliot, many thanks for clarifying that for me. Yes I'd agree that box was probably receiving quite a bit too much power and as Ivan brought up speaker electrical power ratings are unreliable at best these days. I could quite imagine tracks very heavy on synth sine style bass lines taking out drivers quite easily at up to 4 x RMS rating.

I've personally always driven my subs with 1-1.5x RMS as the music generally played through them is full of compressed basslines.

I know most who do more live work can use much higher power amps for headroom purposes which is fine if you have a decent amount of  dynamic range to play with.

On a side note! Mark, Tom, do you think the absorption effect of having two cabinets, one disconnected could be even greater with a tapped horn?

Marks statement got me thinking the effect could be more prominent with the tap and how might it effect the loading of the first cabinet. Could it cause a larger heat buildup in the first drivers coil or possibly larger cone excursion?

Sorry for the random questions, as ever just trying to learn more!
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Scott Hibbard

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Re: NYC Subwoofer Shootout 2007
« Reply #6 on: February 03, 2007, 03:03:40 pm »

Paul,

The Quakes were loud and pounding. They were obviously driven to their absolute limit, they did die trying. Two dead drivers.

Did we kill the Quake drivers?  For whatever reason, I don't remeber that?!  I know we cook the EM 215 drivers...

ScottH

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Mac Kerr

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Re: NYC Subwoofer Shootout 2007
« Reply #7 on: February 03, 2007, 03:14:05 pm »

Scott Hibbard wrote on Sat, 03 February 2007 15:03

Paul,

The Quakes were loud and pounding. They were obviously driven to their absolute limit, they did die trying. Two dead drivers.

Did we kill the Quake drivers?  For whatever reason, I don't remeber that?!  I know we cook the EM 215 drivers...

ScottH


I don't remember the Quakes going down either. The only driver issues I remember was a bad smell from the single TH115, and copious smoke, followed by silence, from the EM215. Scott, you were the one taking notes, I'm going with your account.

Mac
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Rob Spence

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Re: NYC Subwoofer Shootout 2007-How many computers?
« Reply #8 on: February 03, 2007, 04:02:29 pm »

Well, that was where the power strip was  Smile

There were not any conveniance outlets in the room so we took a feed from the distro back where all the laptops ended up.
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Rob Spence
Lynx Audio Services
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Rob Spence

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Re: NYC Subwoofer Shootout 2007
« Reply #9 on: February 03, 2007, 04:16:07 pm »

To clarify in this thread, the EM-215 died. The TH-215 did not.
The EM-215 made a lot of sound first though!
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Rob Spence
Lynx Audio Services
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