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Help me pick out speakers that can take advantage of my sound card. Please with a cherry on top - Page 3

post #21 of 38
I am sorry, but as someone who works with audio professionally, the whole notion of "subwoofers are for people who don't knowsound qquality and/or aren't needed if you just buy the right speakers" is absolutely, completely wrong, and in fact stems from "audiophile" snobbery. If you spend some time (and at 21, I know for a fact that you don't have the experience to say otherwise, it's just a matter of numbers... I was 21 within the past decade, so I can say that with some certainty) actually learning how audio works at every level, from the physics of sound to the electrical and mechanical elements of its reproduction, you will develop a more mature, well rounded view. I will agree with you that Head Fi is a joke, and the reason I am saying this is because I don't want to see youfall into the same trap they did, while trying to avoid it.

Simply put, speakers (well, the vast majority) don't have SUB-woofers to create the low frequency sounds. They have woofers, which are limited in their capabilities and are designed to produce sounds a few hundred hertz higher than a sub. The more you can separate frequencies, the better. To a point. The subwoofers are at an advantage because of how the ear interprets LFE, meaning that the bass need not be directed at the person for it to be well utilized.

Also, as someone who records, edits, mixes, and masters audio, I am going to tell you flat out: TUBE AMPS ARE NOT IN ANY WAY SUPERIOR TO DIGITAL, in fact you are going to spend 4-25x as much to get a similar quality of sound from a tube amp as you are a digital. I know, I have a few, including 4 different McIntosh tunes. The "warm" sound is the low noise floor and distortion, not quality. It is your choice as to what sounds better to you, but don't go around spreading false information. If I did record mastering with tube amps, anyone with a digital amp would be in (metaphorical) pain from the terrible quality. The idea of introducing distortion into a system where everything else is heavily engineered to prevent that distortion is counterintuitive and frankly shows how little experience you have. The only time a tube amp doesn't degrade the signal is with LP's, but if you are listening to digital audio over tubes, you are missing out on the entire point of high quality digital audio. I know that there are some damn good tube amps, but unless you are rocking a McIntosh or better, you are reducing the OBJECTIVE quality of the sound.

Now, subjective quality is a whole different story.


OP: The M-Audio BX5's + decent sound card or DAC will be more than capable of just about anything you ask from it.
   
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post #22 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by nleksan View Post

I am sorry, but as someone who works with audio professionally, the whole notion of "subwoofers are for people who don't knowsound qquality and/or aren't needed if you just buy the right speakers" is absolutely, completely wrong, and in fact stems from "audiophile" snobbery. If you spend some time (and at 21, I know for a fact that you don't have the experience to say otherwise, it's just a matter of numbers... I was 21 within the past decade, so I can say that with some certainty) actually learning how audio works at every level, from the physics of sound to the electrical and mechanical elements of its reproduction, you will develop a more mature, well rounded view. I will agree with you that Head Fi is a joke, and the reason I am saying this is because I don't want to see youfall into the same trap they did, while trying to avoid it.

Simply put, speakers (well, the vast majority) don't have SUB-woofers to create the low frequency sounds. They have woofers, which are limited in their capabilities and are designed to produce sounds a few hundred hertz higher than a sub. The more you can separate frequencies, the better. To a point. The subwoofers are at an advantage because of how the ear interprets LFE, meaning that the bass need not be directed at the person for it to be well utilized.

Also, as someone who records, edits, mixes, and masters audio, I am going to tell you flat out: TUBE AMPS ARE NOT IN ANY WAY SUPERIOR TO DIGITAL, in fact you are going to spend 4-25x as much to get a similar quality of sound from a tube amp as you are a digital. I know, I have a few, including 4 different McIntosh tunes. The "warm" sound is the low noise floor and distortion, not quality. It is your choice as to what sounds better to you, but don't go around spreading false information. If I did record mastering with tube amps, anyone with a digital amp would be in (metaphorical) pain from the terrible quality. The idea of introducing distortion into a system where everything else is heavily engineered to prevent that distortion is counterintuitive and frankly shows how little experience you have. The only time a tube amp doesn't degrade the signal is with LP's, but if you are listening to digital audio over tubes, you are missing out on the entire point of high quality digital audio. I know that there are some damn good tube amps, but unless you are rocking a McIntosh or better, you are reducing the OBJECTIVE quality of the sound.

Now, subjective quality is a whole different story.


OP: The M-Audio BX5's + decent sound card or DAC will be more than capable of just about anything you ask from it.

Well said... would cause a huge disturbance on a forum like avs smile.gif but well said.

Also I know I am not telling you anything new but as far as conversations I have had and conversations I have read about recording studios and subs is that recording studios with out subs are a big NO NO even though there are plenty of them around (studios without subs). Even the studios I am in that don't have subs the engineers usually will admit this but I am in studios for TV broadcast typically and rarely for any sort of music but even this TV heavy studios get music tossed at them once in a while but I don't really have any part of that. I have a very niche purpose inside of a studio.

My point... if the recording studio engineers NEED subwoofers then how can anyone say they are completely pointless. I do cringe when I hear of people talking about setting cross overs to values of 125HZ and what not because they obviously don't know how high of a frequency that is but a properly set up sub-woofer is just an amazing experience. I have spent countless hours auditioning the Rel Strata II w/ Sonus Faber, Vienna Acoustics, and Martin Logan and the Depth, Descent, and Grotto with Vienna and Logan speakers and it is physically impossible to create these frequencies. There is a track on the Metallica Black Album (Don't Tread on Me). That has a huge drum like the ones in a symphony and the first time I heard that on the Descent my jaw dropped.
Edited by givmedew - 4/6/13 at 6:27am
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post #23 of 38
Thread Starter 
I cancelled my order for the Jolida Amplifier and I ordered a Klipsch Reference RW-12d 12" subwoofer for $280 and Cambridge s30 speakers I am still deciding on which receiver.

Between the Denon AVR 1913 or the Pioneer SC-1222
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post #24 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by nleksan View Post

I am sorry, but as someone who works with audio professionally, the whole notion of "subwoofers are for people who don't knowsound qquality and/or aren't needed if you just buy the right speakers" is absolutely, completely wrong, and in fact stems from "audiophile" snobbery. If you spend some time (and at 21, I know for a fact that you don't have the experience to say otherwise, it's just a matter of numbers... I was 21 within the past decade, so I can say that with some certainty) actually learning how audio works at every level, from the physics of sound to the electrical and mechanical elements of its reproduction, you will develop a more mature, well rounded view. I will agree with you that Head Fi is a joke, and the reason I am saying this is because I don't want to see youfall into the same trap they did, while trying to avoid it.

The issue is not that sub woofers are bad. The issue is that they are a MASSIVE pain, and 99 time out of 100 they all are terrible anyways. Trying to find the perfect sub that doesn't over shadow the mid bass, mids, and highs is near impossible. You can't just go out and say "oh XYZ sub woofer is good so you should get it" because chances are they it will not pair well with your speakers. I have wasted hundreds of dollars tracking down good subs. All of them were highly recommended dayton audio subs. All of them were total garbage with my speakers.

The only time I have EVER liked subs was when I took out the drivers of some book shelf speakers, built a whole new cabinet and crossover and added sub woofer drivers to the design. That was actually not a half bad upgrade, but come on.....do you honestly see many people who would be willing to do that?

Quote:
Simply put, speakers (well, the vast majority) don't have SUB-woofers to create the low frequency sounds. They have woofers, which are limited in their capabilities and are designed to produce sounds a few hundred hertz higher than a sub. The more you can separate frequencies, the better. To a point. The subwoofers are at an advantage because of how the ear interprets LFE, meaning that the bass need not be directed at the person for it to be well utilized.

First off speakers don't produce frequencies a few hundred hertz above a sub woofer. They produce frequencies maybe 30-50 hertz higher than a sub. If you are getting speakers that stop at say...200hz then you are getting total crap in terms of speakers.

Also, a sub woofer is very directional to me. It might just be ME and it probably is, but my friend and I have tested this out. (He did not believe me)
Quote:
Also, as someone who records, edits, mixes, and masters audio, I am going to tell you flat out: TUBE AMPS ARE NOT IN ANY WAY SUPERIOR TO DIGITAL, in fact you are going to spend 4-25x as much to get a similar quality of sound from a tube amp as you are a digital. I know, I have a few, including 4 different McIntosh tunes. The "warm" sound is the low noise floor and distortion, not quality. It is your choice as to what sounds better to you, but don't go around spreading false information. If I did record mastering with tube amps, anyone with a digital amp would be in (metaphorical) pain from the terrible quality. The idea of introducing distortion into a system where everything else is heavily engineered to prevent that distortion is counterintuitive and frankly shows how little experience you have. The only time a tube amp doesn't degrade the signal is with LP's, but if you are listening to digital audio over tubes, you are missing out on the entire point of high quality digital audio. I know that there are some damn good tube amps, but unless you are rocking a McIntosh or better, you are reducing the OBJECTIVE quality of the sound.

Well first off, no one records with tube stuff. That much is true. But they do that for far more reasons than just the obligatory "SS is better than tube" argument. In fact, no one records with tube stuff, but guitarists and bass players often use tube amps for their instruments.

As for the rest of your statement, it is clear that you know nothing about tube amps. The only one spreading false info is you. Just because you know one tiny sliver of audio does NOT mean that you can go apply it to every other facet of audio and claim it truth. This even applies to SS equipment as well.

In fact have you ever hear honest to god tube amps? Do you even have a place where you can even listen to tube amps?

If you have ANY place that sells tube audio I highly recommend that you take ANY of your music and go listen to it on a tube system and ABX it to SS before you say anything else.
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post #25 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by nleksan View Post

I am sorry, but as someone who works with audio professionally, the whole notion of "subwoofers are for people who don't knowsound qquality and/or aren't needed if you just buy the right speakers" is absolutely, completely wrong, and in fact stems from "audiophile" snobbery. If you spend some time (and at 21, I know for a fact that you don't have the experience to say otherwise, it's just a matter of numbers... I was 21 within the past decade, so I can say that with some certainty) actually learning how audio works at every level, from the physics of sound to the electrical and mechanical elements of its reproduction, you will develop a more mature, well rounded view. I will agree with you that Head Fi is a joke, and the reason I am saying this is because I don't want to see youfall into the same trap they did, while trying to avoid it.

Simply put, speakers (well, the vast majority) don't have SUB-woofers to create the low frequency sounds. They have woofers, which are limited in their capabilities and are designed to produce sounds a few hundred hertz higher than a sub. The more you can separate frequencies, the better. To a point. The subwoofers are at an advantage because of how the ear interprets LFE, meaning that the bass need not be directed at the person for it to be well utilized.

Also, as someone who records, edits, mixes, and masters audio, I am going to tell you flat out: TUBE AMPS ARE NOT IN ANY WAY SUPERIOR TO DIGITAL, in fact you are going to spend 4-25x as much to get a similar quality of sound from a tube amp as you are a digital. I know, I have a few, including 4 different McIntosh tunes. The "warm" sound is the low noise floor and distortion, not quality. It is your choice as to what sounds better to you, but don't go around spreading false information. If I did record mastering with tube amps, anyone with a digital amp would be in (metaphorical) pain from the terrible quality. The idea of introducing distortion into a system where everything else is heavily engineered to prevent that distortion is counterintuitive and frankly shows how little experience you have. The only time a tube amp doesn't degrade the signal is with LP's, but if you are listening to digital audio over tubes, you are missing out on the entire point of high quality digital audio. I know that there are some damn good tube amps, but unless you are rocking a McIntosh or better, you are reducing the OBJECTIVE quality of the sound.

Now, subjective quality is a whole different story.


OP: The M-Audio BX5's + decent sound card or DAC will be more than capable of just about anything you ask from it.

My personal preference, subwoofer is terrible for music but awesome for movies. I can't explain why though. I don't have one in my current system but not missing it much.

But also to throw a wrench at you the drivers themselves don't necessarily determine the entire audio spectrum for instance a bass reflex speaker.

Glad to see another person who doesn't think McIntosh is a misspelled Apple product thumb.gif Have you seen the D100?
post #26 of 38
@Angel

Seriously? He said he owns some fairly high end tube amps! Did you know almost every new song involves tons of OPAMPs in it? Tube amplifiers are an effect... the same reason why many artists take there own guitar amps to the concert and have them mic the amp. It is an effect that they prefer. Personally I am a mosfet fan that is just my preference which is why I typically enjoy the higher end B&Ks. I also enjoy B&Ks because I have spent hundreds of hours listening to them years before I ever had to throw down a penny for one and they are what I know... I know I like them so I know I can count on them. I also beat the hell out of the ones I did not own and used them to run huge electrostats so I know they can keep up. I am sure if I had found a tube amp that I had spent hundreds of hours with and actually wanted it then maybe I would enjoy it (if it could handle the speakers I enjoy).

It is just a preference... personally if I was going to drop a bunch of coin on a low wattage high end amp it would be a Pioneer class A only amp or something similar. However after seeing what all the digital class amplifiers can do I can honestly see one re-entering my life at some point. I say re-enter because at this point I am not using my pioneer anymore and my T-amp is sitting in a bag... literally because I took it apart.

I understand that tube amps sound great to certain people and I understand that many many years ago Mirage did lots of testing when trying to make a speaker that was completely transparent and had a flat response and what did they find while doing blind testing? People didn't like flat perfect speakers... this is why you like a tube amp. Personally I don't just a preference it could be the difference in our tastes of music. It could be our ears... (I wear plugs at concerts and when shooting I wear plugs and over ear protection) I also never got into SPL.

As for the whole sub being a match for your speakers...? BULL! How much money do you have? If it is not a TON then sorry you don't have the cash or the time to find a match specifically the TIME! I have spent hundreds of hours listening to whatever sub, speaker, amp, and cable combination that was at my disposal and it is far more than you will ever get to handle in your lifetime and I can say this even a cheap sub properly set up will add to the music. The big difference? SPL, Distortion, even frequency response and extreme low frequency response. I am using a Yamaha SW-216 right now. It is a dirt cheap sub! But it is in a tiny room and it is for my PC setup where I am less than 3 feet from extremely high end book shelf speakers. I have it set to the lowest cross over setting and have the volume way down.

In a big living room this sub would just be lost and if your an idiot and set the cross over too high then yes it will be very easy to place its location. As for your comment on speakers only being a few HZ above a sub... ... obviously you didn't see my comment on idiots who set subs up in the 120 region. Every little step down is huge and very noticeable. I have a very very nice sub set up in my living room and again it is set very low even though it can handle much more and my only problem with the subwoofer is that unfortunately my pre/pro x-over settings are too coarse at the lowest settings and jumps from 60 to 40 in one step where I would prefer to be able to choose 50.

For people running cheap subs a cheap sub can do 2 things... 1 can add to the experience and it will have high level inputs so they don't need a compatible receiver to use it just run wires off the back of the speakers to the sub. 2 if the person does not have enough amplifier power then they can run the speakers through the subwoofers cross over and then they will have more power dedicated to the mids and highs and none of it will be wasted trying to create low frequencies the speaker can't handle.

If you think bookshelfs can handle bass please compare any brand of affordable bookshelfs to a pair of Vienna Acoustics or Sonus Faber bookshelfs... You will want a subwoofer after that.

Again I think it has to do with your age. I was already employed at a pro-audio dealer and was the youngest sales person who was also cleared to design flowcharts for entire whole house audio systems and had several years under my belt before I could legally drink... and I was still a young punk kid at that age and had a lot to learn from the people who had been working there longer than I had been able to walk.

Sorry if this gotta a little off the original OPs needs but clearly you are expressing opinions as clearly I am as well. But like the other person said... the notion that a sub is not needed is purely snobbery or lack of experience. Even on a $12,000+ of Logans with a powered bass driver I would want a Rel Stratta II, a higher end Velo, Sunfire, Depth, or Descent.

Also... with what the above person said about digital amps... There are tons of reasons they are good... one example I can give is the person who said the wall wattage was 600 watts... I assure you he was not using a digital amp and when most normal high power amplifiers and receivers double as space heaters he was actually probably seeing 150-250 total watts not even watts per channel... 100 real watts per channel is a lot but it isn't 300... a digital amps output will be much much closer to its consumption.

Anyways,,, don't make the OP feel inferior about his purchase by your propaganda. Personally I think he did the right thing buying an active subwoofer. I think he should skip buying a receiver or integrated amp and just grab a DAC with a volume knob and go straight to a 2CH amp but that is OPINION and PREFERENCE! My opinion and my preference just like you somehow love tube amps and bookshelfs without subwoofers.

If bookshelfs could hit low frequencies why would speakers companies even bother with bigger speakers? Are you telling me my floor standing VA's where pointless? good luck convincing anyone of that.
Edited by givmedew - 4/6/13 at 9:32am
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post #27 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by nleksan View Post

[...]
Also, as someone who records, edits, mixes, and masters audio, I am going to tell you flat out: TUBE AMPS ARE NOT IN ANY WAY SUPERIOR TO DIGITAL, in fact you are going to spend 4-25x as much to get a similar quality of sound from a tube amp as you are a digital.
[...]

Just to be clear, are you really talking about "digital" amps? The usual transistor-based (solid-state) amps are analog electronics, just like most tube-based amps. If you really wanted, you could make a digital amp or system out of vacuum tubes.

Usually, a "digital" amp (but this is a misnomer) refers to some kind of class D or similar amp that uses a switching controller to generate very quick pulses of the desired length, at frequencies higher than audio; once properly low-pass filtered, the output signal should look like the audio input. Some of the key mechanisms are not that different than in delta-sigma DACs or if you stretch it further—say computer CPU / GPU VRMs. This is mostly for higher efficiency.
post #28 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikeaj View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by nleksan View Post

[...]
Also, as someone who records, edits, mixes, and masters audio, I am going to tell you flat out: TUBE AMPS ARE NOT IN ANY WAY SUPERIOR TO DIGITAL, in fact you are going to spend 4-25x as much to get a similar quality of sound from a tube amp as you are a digital.
[...]

Just to be clear, are you really talking about "digital" amps? The usual transistor-based (solid-state) amps are analog electronics, just like most tube-based amps. If you really wanted, you could make a digital amp or system out of vacuum tubes.

Usually, a "digital" amp (but this is a misnomer) refers to some kind of class D or similar amp that uses a switching controller to generate very quick pulses of the desired length, at frequencies higher than audio; once properly low-pass filtered, the output signal should look like the audio input. Some of the key mechanisms are not that different than in delta-sigma DACs or if you stretch it further—say computer CPU / GPU VRMs. This is mostly for higher efficiency.

I am fairly certain he is referring to a D/T amp and they are called digital amps regardless of the reality. Just like none of carver's products actual function by the name of the product. "T" amp are very very efficient and quite capable or creating clean enjoyable sound at tube or higher output levels. Not sure what exact amp he was speaking about but my experience with "digital" amps have been amazing. Ever since the first pre-production "T" amp I heard from Alpine back in maybe 2000? They have the advantage of being extremely power efficient reducing some of the largest expenses in a real amplifier... the power supply, the heat sink stock, caps, and enclosure.
Edited by givmedew - 4/6/13 at 9:38am
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post #29 of 38
Thread Starter 
After reading through it seems like a Tube amplifiers would be the best choice for listening to alternative music and the reviews for the Jolida FX-10 say it sounds great with good speakers but which tube amplifier would be able to power the S30's along with the Klipsch Reference RW-12d 12" subwoofer?
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post #30 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by givmedew View Post

I am fairly certain he is referring to a D/T amp and they are called digital amps regardless of the reality. Just like none of carver's products actual function by the name of the product. "T" amp are very very efficient and quite capable or creating clean enjoyable sound at tube or higher output levels. Not sure what exact amp he was speaking about but my experience with "digital" amps have been amazing. Ever since the first pre-production "T" amp I heard from Alpine back in maybe 2000? They have the advantage of being extremely power efficient reducing some of the largest expenses in a real amplifier... the power supply, the heat sink stock, caps, and enclosure.
I agree, if you can make a class D / T / E / whatever amp that does the job well, why not?

Some of the cheapest modules and kits aren't exactly high-fidelity and are hardly built to last, but that doesn't reflect on what's possible or even what has currently existed for years.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WannaBeOCer View Post

After reading through it seems like a Tube amplifiers would be the best choice for listening to alternative music and the reviews for the Jolida FX-10 say it sounds great with good speakers but which tube amplifier would be able to power the S30's along with the Klipsch Reference RW-12d 12" subwoofer?
My recommendation is not to take too much heed into the amplifier technology (though it can make some difference, it really depends on the implementation, which you'd usually be guessing about). A relatively cheap A/V receiver is okay too—though they may have a lot of features you don't need, the numbers of units sold, companies making them, profit margins, etc. are such that they have relatively high value for money. Just get whatever fits your room, has a decent price, and has enough power to handle listening with those speakers at the distance and volumes you'd be using.
Edited by mikeaj - 4/6/13 at 10:23am
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