Kain
I've played around with my SubMersive for a few days with both movies and music and feel it's time to provide my impressions.

First of all, my SubMersive is placed right next to the best seat. The best seat is the seat right next to the SubMersive on the three-seater sofa. By "best seat" I mean you are sitting right in the middle of the main left and right speakers with the center speaker aimed right at you.



I have the trim level on my A/V receiver for the subwoofer channel set to 0 dB and the gain on the back of the SubMersive set to -16 dB. My room is about 15 feet long x 11.5 feet wide x 9.5 feet high.

Using the DVD Mark provided (The 5.1 Audio Toolkit), if I play the 0.1 channel subwoofer test, I'm suppose to hit 115 dB peaks with the system at reference level. Using my RadioShack SPL meter, I hit 118-119 dB at the listening position. Since the RadioShack SPL meter is known to be inaccurate with bass frequencies (adds 3 or so dB to the actual SPL) I guess it's safe to say that I have correctly calibrated the SubMersive.

I do not have any EQing abilities in my system so I guess I'm at a disadvantage here.

So, how is it? I read a lot of user reviews on the SubMersive and everyone stated that it has a lot of midbass punch. People described it as "a jackhammer hitting you in the chest." However, I don't seem to be getting that effect. Maybe it's a placement isssue as the bass is strongest in my room in the corner next to the other end of the three-seater sofa. But there is a door there and I can't place anything there. However, I also must note people stated the same about my main speakers which are Klipsch RF-7s. People stated that they are very punchy yet I also found them not as punchy as I would like. I guess that my standard of "punchiness" is quite different compared to most other people. Once again, the punchiness is quite strong (actually does hit me in the chest) if I stand in the corner next to the other end of the three-seater sofa. I'm fairly sure it's a placement issue. I played some music and the bass was very strong (I mean A LOT stronger) if I stood in the corner on the other end of the three-seater. Unfortunately, my room is small and there is only one place where I can place the SubMersive.

As for sound quality, with music it does sound great. Even with the very nearfield placement it almost completely disappears. I know that if I had the SubMersive placed up front, I definetely would not be able to tell the SubMersive was on and playing.

With movies, the nearfield placement seems to really give away the location of where the bass is coming from. I can feel the wind coming from my side but only on certain very loud bassy scenes at high volumes. One thing did surpise me a bit though. I played the beginning of Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones (where the big spaceship flies over a few times and finally explodes) at reference level and managed to light up the "clip light" and the SubMersive immediately went into "protection mode" for a second and then resumed normally. Considering I have a small room and the gain on the SubMersive at only -16 dB, I wasn't expecting that. However, reference level is quite loud and I normally listen at 10 dB below reference. At this volume setting, the SubMersive played the scene with no problems. I also played the Ironhide flip scene from Transformers at close to reference and for some reason I couldn't really tell that the bass was coming from my side. It was room-filling. I guess it also depends on how the bass is implemented in a movie.

Overall, I am satisfied but I'm sure with better placement and some EQing I would be very pleased.
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Stereodude
Kain wrote:
Using the DVD Mark provided (The 5.1 Audio Toolkit), if I play the 0.1 channel subwoofer test, I'm suppose to hit 115 dB peaks with the system at reference level. Using my RadioShack SPL meter, I hit 118-119 dB at the listening position. Since the RadioShack SPL meter is known to be inaccurate with bass frequencies (adds 3 or so dB to the actual SPL) I guess it's safe to say that I have correctly calibrated the SubMersive.

I'm pretty sure you have that backwards.  As far as I know, the meter reads low, not high at low frequencies.  So, you would need to add some additional dB to what the meter reads to get a true reading, not the other way around.

So, you probably have your submersive set about 6dB hot.
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ebirbal
As a test, why don't you try to move the sub around? That way, you'll know if its the positioning or something else.
http://www.pranavmehta.net - better internet radio for Onkyo's Nettune enabled devices
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KenWu

Although it's not easy to judge the performance of a sub without some placement experimentation 
or even acoustic analysis, especially in corner placement as in your room which in theory
may excite room modes, fortunately it seems that you have a room with favorable ratio
( you may wanna check this out: http://www.bobgolds.com/Mode/RoomModes.htm  ) 

If you got time for further room analysis I would recommend the freeware "Room EQ Wizard",
and it does save a lot of time in fine tuning the system by taking guesswork out of the equation, though the learning curve is a bit steep.
I guess it's hard to have a AS-EQ1 , anti-mode 8033 or even SMS-1 or Behringer come in handy for you,
at least you could try to move the sub around and see how it goes.  





 





 

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KenWu
Kain said that the submersive is his first time
Lucky man!

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?p=16956113
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Kain
Stereodude,

Whoops! You're right. I just recalibrated my setup and it now sounds more balanced. The SubMersive also sounds more at ease. I reduced the gain on the SubMersive from -16 dB to -24 dB. This resulted in 111-112 dB on The 5.1 Audio Toolkit test which means it is right at 115 dB (where it should be).

ebirbal,

I did try one other spot in the room but it seems it was in a null as I had to really turn up the gain to get the same volume I get with my current nearfield position. I therefore have returned to my original position next to the sofa.

KenWu,

I still haven't figured out how to use REW. Do I need an external mic for it or can I use my built-in mic on my laptop?

JWJ,

This is my first "real" subwoofer.

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Stereodude
Kain wrote:

I still haven't figured out how to use REW. Do I need an external mic for it or can I use my built-in mic on my laptop?


You need an external measurement microphone.
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ebirbal
so experience the jackhammer effect yet?

Please let us know your impressions once the system is properly calibrated

http://www.pranavmehta.net - better internet radio for Onkyo's Nettune enabled devices
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MikeDuke

Congrats on getting the sub dialed in.  That is a nice looking room.  I know all you people with nice size rooms sometimes think it is a burden because you have to fill it.  But trust me. When you have a system in a 1000cf room, like I do, you wish for more space.  Anyway, I digress.  Have fun with the sub

I simply love this stuff.
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Kain
Okay, I did some more testing with music. For movies, I have the gain on the SubMersive set to -24 dB and the subwoofer channel trim level on my A/V receiver set to 0 dB. This results in 115 dB peaks for the LFE channel and thus can be said that I have calibrated it flat for movies. For music, I have the SubMersive gain also set to -24 dB but the A/V receiver subwoofer channel trim level to +10 dB. I find that bass in most music today (or whatever I listen to which is mainly rock) is very low and needs a boost. Anyway, with the mentioned settings, I tried some rap/hip-top and DAMN! It really does hit hard and plays very cleanly. I was very impressed. Plus, the very near placement of the SubMersive results in grade midbass impact.

However, one thing puzzled me. The bass on those songs I tried seemed very loud and hard-hitting yet only registered 108 dB (uncorrected) on my RadioShack SPL meter. The Ironhide flip scene in Transformers, while loud, didn't seem as loud yet registered 112 dB (uncorrected) on my meter. Why is this?

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Fatawan

Different frequencies, different feel!

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KenWu

Kain wrote:
Okay, I did some more testing with music. For movies, I have the gain on the SubMersive set to -24 dB and the subwoofer channel trim level on my A/V receiver set to 0 dB. This results in 115 dB peaks for the LFE channel and thus can be said that I have calibrated it flat for movies. For music, I have the SubMersive gain also set to -24 dB but the A/V receiver subwoofer channel trim level to +10 dB. I find that bass in most music today (or whatever I listen to which is mainly rock) is very low and needs a boost. Anyway, with the mentioned settings, I tried some rap/hip-top and DAMN! It really does hit hard and plays very cleanly. I was very impressed. Plus, the very near placement of the SubMersive results in grade midbass impact.

However, one thing puzzled me. The bass on those songs I tried seemed very loud and hard-hitting yet only registered 108 dB (uncorrected) on my RadioShack SPL meter. The Ironhide flip scene in Transformers, while loud, didn't seem as loud yet registered 112 dB (uncorrected) on my meter. Why is this?

Hi Kain, in my experience movie soundtracks (esp. in sci-fi action ..)generally include more (exaggerated?) low frequency contents than ordinary music recordings. And much of these recent movie soundtracks reach very low frequency range which rarely present by music instruments.

Human hearing has different perceptive sensitivity at loudness vs Hz:
http://neural.cs.nthu.edu.tw/jang/books/audioSignalProcessing/image/Fletcher-Munson.gif

To clear things out you may have to resort to acoustical analysis (softwares like REW) for you room;
personal preference may also play a part here. 
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Kain
JWJ wrote:
Also be sure and follow this correction table for the Radio Shack analog SPL meter. >> http://www.svsound.com/questions-faqs-rscomp.cfm

Thanks. However, I am using the digital version. Will the same table apply to my meter?
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Kain
So, I've played around with the SubMersive more. I have everything calibrated flat according to my digital RadioShack SPL meter and I must say I am very impressed. The bass sounds FANTASTIC!

Kudos to Mark!
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Utnapishtim

Kain wrote:
So, I've played around with the SubMersive more. I have everything calibrated flat according to my digital RadioShack SPL meter and I must say I am very impressed. The bass sounds FANTASTIC!

Kudos to Mark!

Great news Kain!  I've been battling the family time vs. play time for the last couple days, so I've just got my SubMersive as flat as position and phasing can get me.  I love it so far... 

I've got the DSP-30 loaded up with Mark's seed file and now I just need some time to play around with the settings!
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