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Discussion Starter #1
Hi guys,

I'm officially an owner of the new SVS PB12-Plus with the new sledge amp. I was upgrading from a Polk PSW404B that I bought a while back because I couldn't afford a decent sub. I originally started out with the PB12-NSD but found that while it was good (blew away my old sub - no comparison), it wasn't quite enough to fill my HT room. The room is about 450ft^2 so about 3,600ft^3 total volume.

I'll start with the NSD. The PB12-NSD was quite easy to set up. I put the gain at about noon and let my receiver (Elite 94txh) do the configuration. I bumped the sub channel by about 3db and played a few movies at about -10 on my receiver. Scene 25 from Finding Nemo (tapping on fish tank scene) was phenomenal. The bass was loud and clear, no distortion but because of the size of my room, the limiter on the sub was kicking in (albeit just briefly which I read was fine). I also played Ironman and Ironman 2 (very LFE intensive movies) and I was just floored by the sound I was getting. Again, the limiter was kicked in when the bass got too intense for the sub to handle in my room but the bass was strong and clear.

Although I was quite impressed with the PB12-NSD, I just wasn't comfortable with having the limiter kick in so often. In the end, I decided to return it for the PB12-Plus.

Went to pick up the sub on Saturday and installed it immediately when I got home. This beast was heavy! It was probably a solid 40-50lbs heavier than the NSD. Setup was a bit different because they got rid of the gain dial but instead was all done on the LCD display on the back. They changed the gain to volume control. I first set it to -65db (1/3 of the way up since it goes from -100db to 0db for volume control) and tried setup. My receiver could not register any sound from the sub. So I tried again at -45db. Again, the receiver said the sub was too quiet and I had to bump up the volume. At this point I thought something was wrong and took a look at the manual. They suggested to put it at -20db to start and tweak as necessary. In the end, I put it to -10db (I already reduced the LFE on the receiver by -5db (from 0db to -20db) and re-ran MCCAC. It set the sub channel to -4.5db so I bumped it up by 3.5db. I re-ran the Finding Nemo scene 25 with the volume at -10db and boy my walls and ground were rumbling. I didn't see anything flicker on the back of the sub so I assume the limiter has not kicked in yet. The sub filled my theater with clean crisp bass. I can feel the bass in my chest from my seating position. At this point, it was obvious that this sub was definitely stronger than the NSD. I put in Ironman and Ironman 2 and all I could say was WOW, these subs can kick it. I don't think the limiter kicked in at all, even through all the intense scenes. Finally I put in Dark Knight and watched the underground tunnel scene where the Joker uses the bazooka. My whole house was rumbling in those scenes. I still have some tweaking to do but so far, I'm impressed.

I do have to wonder though whether having 2 NSDs would be better (even though the NSDs only have 400 watts whereas the plus has 800 watts and a better woofer).

Either way, no regrets on my part. The NSD would work well for home theaters up to maybe 2800ft^3 if you want to really feel the bass. Anyone with larger rooms should definitely look to the plus or dual NSDs.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks eljay! I'm defintely enjoying the new sub. Played some Incredible Hulk last night with the sub and the whole house was rattling, this was at -13db on the receiver. Any louder and I'd probably go deaf. My wife said she could feel the rumbling from upstairs. I can't imagine what an Ultra would feel like... but I think it might be overkill.

Hopefully when you get that 2nd NSD, you can chime in on the difference it makes. From all that I've read, 2xNSDs will overpower 1 Plus so if you have the space for it, that'd definitely be the way to go. I don't know if what I read related to the old NSDs in relation to the old Plus or if it still applies(since before the plus only had 525watts and the NSD about 325 watts). The new NSDs have 400w and the new Plus has 800w. Still, it would fill the space more efficiently I would imagine.

Either way, let us know how the 2xNSDs are. Can't wait for your review.
 

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This beast was heavy! It was probably a solid 40-50lbs heavier than the NSD
Weight = 127 pounds

No kidding! Wow, that thing is a monster.

Thanks for the review and nice to hear a comparison against the PB12-NSD as I also have one. At first I thought you were reviewing one of the new sealed subs as that is what I'm thinking of switching to next.

How much I'd love this new sub its too big for our place but its great to hear a strong review for it.

Enjoy the new toy.
 

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Congrats on your new sub!

I have been lucky enough to own my PB 13 Ultra for two years now, still blows me away how fantastic it sounds in my 23'x13'x8 HT, simply awesome experience and worth every penny:)

Enjoy your new toy.
 

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aznrock2000: Any updates on the new sub since you have had some time to play/tweak it now?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I finally picked up an SPL meter to calibrate this sub and my speakers. Boy what a difference that made. I had wayyy too much room gain in the low end (making the entire house rumble, even at moderate listening levels) and a small dip in the 40hz area (resulting in weaker mid-bass slam) which I was able to fix up using the P-EQ and Room Compensation adjustment on the back of the sub. Now everything sounds much better. The low stuff isn't overly exaggerated and I am getting a ton of mid-bass slam that I was lacking before. I'm also able to play movies at a higher level now. I tested out some Iron Man 1 and 2, How to Drain Your Dragon, and The Dark Knight and they all sounded even better than before. I run my sub using 1 port plugged (prefer this, not sure why) and even at -14db on my AVR, the whole house rumbles. Bass is clear and not boomy at all. I can't imagine how much louder this thing will go with all ports open.
I am loving this sub and it makes movie watching all the more enjoyable.

Jack from SVS was very helpful and when asked about the upcoming shootout being done by Audioholics, he sounded quite confident that the PB12-Plus will do well. I know most people on AVS are raving about the HSU VTF-15H being 1/2 the cost of the Ultra and preliminary tests show it might even best the Ultra in performance. It just sounds too good to be true and something's gotta give. Anyways, it's gonna be exciting to see how the PB12 measures up against the VTF. Either way, no regrets from me. Most important thing is to get that SPL meter to get the most out of the sub.
 

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Thanks for the update. It sounds like you are very happy with your decision.

Do you also listen to any music, ie: jazz or stuff like Jack Johnson, Dave Matthews? Wondering what you thought of it then.

I'm trying to pick one up on Saturday.
 

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Posting this a little later than I wanted to but here are my initial impressions.

After another case of the 'upgrades' I sold my PB12-NSD and replaced it with a PB12-Plus and I thought I would add some early impressions on the new subwoofer.

Although I was very happy with the NSD I was looking for "more" and "better"....even if it was a more and better placebo. We listen to music/movies at a ratio of 60/40 so I needed something that would be good on both sides.

Very early initial impressions:

Just like noted above this thing is freak'n heavy. Stuffing it in the back of my GTi (so glad I bought a hatch) was quite easy with the assistance from one of the guys at Sonic Boom. Once I was home, it was a lot of back breaking effort as I didn't have a second hand to help me. I did have a flat cart on wheels which made the effort a lot easier since I had no stairs to worry about. Of course, getting it out of the box and over into the corner took quite a few attempts with some back stretching in between. Be smart and get some help.

Having the two subs side by each (forgot to take a picture) you can see the slight size difference in favour of the Plus, nothing major, just an inch here and there but for some reason it looks a lot bigger. That might be from the three ports in the front giving it that feeling of being larger. The materials look and feel better with the Plus which it should at twice the money, most notable are the 'wood' sides and the woofer.

As with most new things I'm buying I have already read the instruction manual 2 or 3 times to get a good idea how things work so setup wasn't all the difficult. Initially I just set the volume level with test tones and my RS Meter and then will start playing with the other functions later.

I will say that I didn't notice a massive change right off the start, could mean more tweaking was still needed or the NSD was a really good sub but I'm thinking it is a combination of both. I did notice that the bass sounded more smooth and tight though which is a really good thing. I've read that better bass doesn't stand out at first due to the more flat frequency response which can make you think something is now missing when you are actually hearing it correctly.

While I was trying to get everything setup with the new sub, the old sub was up for sale. I had a buyer come over to listen to it and that was when I noticed the difference and it felt like night and day to me. The NSD wasn't as smooth as the Plus was. This is not saying the NSD isn't a good sub because it is a great sub and has served me well and I'm sure my neighbors would also agree ;). But when you spend twice the money on an upgrade you do want to hear improvements right away.

I got the sub at the same time it got busy at work so I didn't have a lot of free time in the beginning to sit around and do any critical listening. Now over the last month I've been able to find a couple of days here and there to tweak, listen, tweak again, listen some more. Well I must say that I'm loving the sub a lot and have no regrets moving up the money chain.

I found my improvements were greater with music than movies since I can't play at reference levels. I always found that when I was listening to my 2 channel music with the old sub I had to turn it off as it muddied up things, now I'm leaving the sub on as its more integrated and I can't even tell its on, well until I turn it off that is.

Picture:



I know its a little cramped in there but do the lack of space, this is the only place I can put the sub.

In January I plan on adding the sub-eq to see how much of a difference it makes. I'm hoping that it will flatten out my FR and I'll try it with different ports sealed to see which one give the best results. Sometimes fiddling is half the fun.

I can highly recommend the PB-12 Plus for anybody looking at this sub. Of course, this is not the only great sub available on the market today which does make choosing one quite the challenge and for the most part, you can not lose with most choices.

Next and hopefully last to upgrade will be my main speakers. That might take a lot longer unless some amazing sale comes along or I find a suitcase full of money.
 

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gotta hand it to ya guys ... that is one sweet looking sub. looks huge up against those MA's ..! your neighbors are going to be rattled .. !

it's a very good (satisfying) feeling purchasing HT items that deliver well on what you intended/seek, as described ..etc. .. money well spent. your good for awhile now i would think. am picturing it now .. heading home on the 401 ..sub on board ... the nose of the car pointed up, back end ....dragging behind .. ha !

congrats :)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Hey Wantmorehd,

Glad to see you are enjoying the sub. Make sure you plot out your frequency response to see if you've got any peaks or nulls in your system and try to flatten it out with the built-in PEQ and room gain comp. I was thinking about adding the EQ as well but that's $850 I can't afford to spend. I've gotten mine relatively flat (not perfect but good enough) and it sounds awesome.
 

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I have a couple of peaks/valleys that need to be corrected so I'll be adding the SubEQ. I thought about swapping my pre-pro out for a new one that does MultiEQ XT32 but they are very rare so far which means I can wait.

Out of curiosity, how did you plot your curve? I've read different methods from doing it by hand with test tones up to running software/mic to capture it.

Will say though, I'm still loving the sub and how great it sounds.

Here is the review Audioholics just release for it.

http://www.audioholics.com/reviews/speakers/subwoofers/pb12-plus
 

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I used the Radio Shack SPL meter and test tones I downloaded from RealTraps. I tried generating tones with the program SVS suggested NCH or something and it didn't work out. I was gonna use the PC and use that but I didn't want to move my computer to the home theater so I did this instead. SVS has an Excel spreadsheet you can plug your numbers into and plots the graph for you. I had some room gain and a null around 40hz at my listening position. I moved my sub forward a few inches and I don't seem to notice it as much. Didn't bother re-plotting but it sounds good as is. I see you are running it in the 16hz tune as well. I like that tune as well.

I saw the review and it is impressive. Can't wait for all the other reviews to come out to compare.
 

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Thanks for the links. I downloaded the test tones from Real Traps and plotted my graph.

The good news is that things were not as bad as I thought they were for my peaks/valleys as the frequency curve was pretty flat after I fixed one small dip.

The bad news, I seem to have a very fast drop off (cliff like) at 23hz and below. I found this strange as my sub is in a corner which I thought would cause room gain but it seems that I'm getting "room loss". I'm running the sub with a 16hz tune. I quickly tried the 20hz tune and had the same results. As first I thought I had the Room Compensation on but it wasn't (or I didn't think it was).

On the weekend, I'm going to recheck and remeasure plus try some near field measurements (12 inches?) to see if it is a possible room problem.

Anybody else ever run into something like this?
 

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Thanks for the reminder re: adjusting the values. It seems you need to add a lot to the values so hopefully, that was all it was.

12Hz add 16.5dB
16Hz add 11.5dB
20Hz add 7.5dB
25Hz add 5dB

This is why I want to remeasure and this time, do it earlier in the day vs late at night. Hopefully it was only a user error. :eek:
 
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