Side Facing Woofers - can they do bass?

Discussion in 'Hi-Fi and General Audio' started by bemcsa, Sep 28, 2005.

  1. bemcsa

    bemcsa

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    A growing number of speaker makers mount their woofers in the side of the cabinet. In principle its a good idea. You get the benefits of a monitor speaker but can still get a full range response by using the space that would otherwise be used by a stand. They are more acceptable in a domestic environment as well. However, can they do bass?

    I currently have 3 pairs of speakers, 2 of which have side woofers. The mission 782's are not bad for the money, but their achilles heel is the bass. Sometimes it seems that the bass is playing a completely different track to the rest of the speaker. I also have some Vienna Acoustic Strauss. I really like these speakers, but the bass can sound boomy and congested. They sounded much better in the large room at the dealers, so the main problem could be down to my room. I believe they need plenty of space either side to work properly.

    Since I am not entirely happy with any of my speakers, the search for a better pair continues. So has anyone heard a pair of speakers with side facing woofers that have a well controlled and integrated bass or should all of the drivers be pointing straight ahead?
     
    bemcsa, Sep 28, 2005
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  2. bemcsa

    Tenson Moderator

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    I have never heard any! All the speakers I have heard with side woofers sound either lacking in low bass or over boomy and resonante.
     
    Tenson, Sep 28, 2005
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  3. bemcsa

    Rory satisfied

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    from experience of Audio Physic Virgo 2s, yes they do do bass, and very nicely too :D Need a lot of space around them though.

    I still fancy trying a pair out actually but they are incredibly deep!
     
    Rory, Sep 28, 2005
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  4. bemcsa

    SteveC PrimaLuna is not cheese

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    If you drop a rock in a pond it doesn't matter which way it is facing, the ripples go everywhere. It's the same only different.
     
    SteveC, Sep 29, 2005
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  5. bemcsa

    lAmBoY Lothario and Libertine

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    Have you tried removing the spikes and plonking the speakers directly to the floor?

    I know it sounds a little unconventional but it added a little thwack to my bass on the amphions.

    I have oodles of space either side of my woofers and I dont have bass problems - I would add that I had some OB1s on dem that had tighter bass - but to my ears after a weekend it was 'stunt bass' that overshadowed all else.

    Which direction are you firing the bass drivers? IME bass is directional - I know that sounds wierd too but I guess it depends on the xover values as to how directional bass can appear.
     
    lAmBoY, Sep 29, 2005
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  6. bemcsa

    bemcsa

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    From my experience of side facing woofers; there is plenty of bass, its just not very well controlled and can sound detached from the rest of the speaker. Its a bit like using a sub that has not been integrated very well. Its quite possible that there is not a fundamental problem with the design, just that they don't work very well in my room.

    Craig, I noticed that you have the Amphions for sale. Are you not happy with them?
     
    bemcsa, Sep 29, 2005
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  7. bemcsa

    lAmBoY Lothario and Libertine

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    I am very happy with the Amphs - I just fancy a change. I have a new baby due to knock on my front door any day now, so I thought now is as good a time as any to be without the trusty HiFi.

    I am actually pondering on going to Wilson Benesch Arcs.
     
    lAmBoY, Sep 29, 2005
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  8. bemcsa

    domfjbrown live & breathe psy-trance

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    Mordaunt-short MS908s with side-firing bass drivers sound good from what I heard round lhatkins', at least, that was before they moved. He's still not got the lounge done yet so I've not heard how those speakers will do bass in the new place :(
     
    domfjbrown, Sep 29, 2005
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  9. bemcsa

    leonard smalls GufmeisterGeneral

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    I heard the Audio Physic Virgos side by side with my Dittons...
    And the Virgos go to about 40Hz.
    Not good enough for a not-cheap speaker! At least they were an easier load than the 66s.
     
    leonard smalls, Sep 30, 2005
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  10. bemcsa

    Nomoretweaks Tourist on tilt

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    A woofer radiates lower octaves pretty evenly in all directions and that includes through all cabinet walls. So there is no real reason why side mounted woofer should give you less or a detached bass, unless the design is flawed. But that has nothing to do with the woofer placement.
     
    Nomoretweaks, Sep 30, 2005
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  11. bemcsa

    bottleneck talks a load of rubbish

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    Its my understanding that you're exactly right, bass is directional.

    I believe when a designer uses a sideways firing bass driver it has everything to do with keeping the front profile of the speaker slim, and nothing to do with making the bass sound as good as it can.

    Of course thats a gross oversimplification, but like most such statements it contains more than a grain of truth.

    The question of whether a cabinet with a sideways firing bass driver still 'does' bass, well yes of course if it has big bass drivers in a big enclosure.

    It just might sound slightly diffuse.
     
    bottleneck, Sep 30, 2005
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  12. bemcsa

    andybillet

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    I recently read this interesting article on the www.tactaudio.dk website. If you click on the 'Background' Link on the left you can then navigate to the 'A note on subwoofers and the application with TacT Audio room-correction systems' article. It seems to have been written a while ago now as their products seem to have advanced since although the basic principals remain the same. I have copied the relevant bit that applies to why you may be having problems getting good bass in your listening room.................


    All loudspeakers (except dipoles and to a certain extent horn speakers) radiate sound in an omni-directional pattern at low frequencies. Depending on the size, shape and configuration of the speaker the dispersion pattern will change to be more directional at higher frequencies. Typically there will be a transition at around 250 – 450 Hz where the speaker becomes directional. In the omni-directional range the speaker will produce almost exactly the same sound pressure in all directions. This means that only a small fraction of the sound will be coming directly towards the listening position. Most of the sound will hit the rear wall, side wall and corner behind the speaker, and then be re-directed towards the listening position with various delays. Depending on the angle of these reflections the phase will be different for each reflection. The result is a completely diffuse and undefined reproduction of the fundamental range of musical instruments.

    The TacT solution is a complete re-thinking of the reproduction of sound in listening rooms. The practical solution is to place one specially designed woofer system in each corner behind the main speakers and apply a very steep crossover at around 325 Hz. Due to the geometry of the woofer system, the sound will be directed towards the listening position without any delay and with a single - well defined time response.



    Hope this is of use.
    Andy
     
    andybillet, Sep 30, 2005
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  13. bemcsa

    gregf

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    Side firing woofers do bass. It all depends on how well the speaker has been designed. I have the VA Mahlers which have two side firing woofers and they produce thunderous bass. Yesterday with a friend of mine we were listening to a CD that goes down to 13Hz. Now I dont claim that the Mahlers go down that low but the whole house was shaking! Side firing woofer speakers need amplifiers with good and fast bass response otherwise they MAY sound slow. It is also worth experimenting with the woofer firing inwards instead of firing against the side walls.
     
    gregf, Oct 2, 2005
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  14. bemcsa

    dudywoxer Regaholic

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    I have a set of Rega R3's, and although they are a small floor stander they have more then enough bass for me, in my room. They do sound different depending on wether you have the bass drivers pointing into each other, or out twards the walls. In my current set up, inwards is preferable.
    ________
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    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 18, 2011
    dudywoxer, Oct 2, 2005
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  15. bemcsa

    Snoopdog

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    Amphion Krypton speakers with 12" side firing bass drivers (facing inwards) + Conrad Johnson Premier 350SA power amp supplying the watts = a very respectable bass performance in my 11' x 24' x 8' room :)
     
    Snoopdog, Oct 2, 2005
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  16. bemcsa

    [email protected]

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    speakers

    i have cura ca30 with rear firing bass and have found that the bass is superb however i dont think i am using them to thier full pontencial as my room is quite small so looks like its selling time to get a pair of speakers that are not quite as powerfull in the bass region shame because they are beautifully finished speakers and sound great. cheers henry
     
    [email protected], Oct 3, 2005
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