Creating a rumble in the subwoofer world: Power Sound Audio follows-up an exciting first year with big news about new models (XV30f, Triax) - Home Theater Forum and Systems - HomeTheaterShack.com

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post #1 of 53 Old 05-21-13, 09:42 PM Thread Starter
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Creating a rumble in the subwoofer world: Power Sound Audio follows-up an exciting first year with big news about new models (XV30f, Triax)

Exciting times and big announcements are coming out of Mineral Ridge, Ohio. That’s the location of Power Sound Audio, an upstart manufacturer of American made subwoofers co-founded by longtime sub-gurus Tom Vodhanel and Jim Farina. The pair have worked together in various audio capacities for more than a decade. Vodhanel was previously known as a founding force behind SV Subwoofers (now SVS Sound). Farina began his career as an assembler at SV Subwoofers and eventually found his way to the top of that company’s Research and Development department.



Following a hiatus that lasted several years, the duo re-emerged last June and announced the birth of Power Sound Audio along with three models (the sealed XS15 and ported XV15 and XV30) currently found in their Power-X series of subwoofers. The company released a fourth model, a sealed dual-driver sub (XS30), five months later.

Reaction to the arrival of the new company and their initial offerings was extremely positive and full of anticipation. It didn’t hurt that both Vodhanel and Farina immediately received recognition for their previous accomplishments, giving Power Sound Audio legitimacy before their products had even hit the streets. But, Vodhanel explains, the recent failures of several Internet Direct manufacturers is enough to give any enthusiast pause when it comes to trusting a new company.

“Three years can be a long time to be out of the loop,” says Vodhanel. “And [any buyer] hesitation is understandable, of course. But I believe our dedication to customer service was apparent right from launch and that eased concerns to some degree.”

That aspect of Power Sound Audio’s offerings, what they call “a unique buying experience for customers,” has certainly helped the company as word has spread across enthusiast web-forums. “I believe it all starts with a personal interaction with each customer or potential customer,” says Vodhanel. “If anyone has a question about any Power Sound Audio product they can email or phone us seven days a week and Jim or I will have answers for them. It’s equally important to maintain contact with a customer to ensure they don’t run into any set-up or calibration hiccups. We have gained a reputation for unsurpassed interaction and support with our our customers.”

In this day and age, Vodhanel says, reputation is important because all aspects of a company, especially an internet company selling products direct to customers, are dissected and discussed on enthusiast forums across the web. Potential buyers revel in the ability to hear about user experiences from actual owners of specific products. To their benefit, Power Sound Audio has enjoyed a significant amount of notoriety amongst enthusiasts which plays directly into the company’s desire to let their offerings sell themselves.

Buzz about Power Sound Audio’s arrival on the subwoofer scene fed an initial ordering frenzy. Vodhanel says that early orders were doubling nearly every six weeks, a near perfect storm situation for the company. The result was a stress on their suppliers that presented some delivery challenges. While the production capabilities at Power Sound Audio were coasting, they found themselves waiting for key components from parts suppliers. “In fairness to our vendors,” says Vodhanel, “when your quantities double every four to six weeks, it can be tough to keep up.” In talking with Vodhanel, it’s obvious they were excited about the demand for their products while disappointed in having to delay deliveries to their customers. He stresses he is confident that vendors have adjusted to demands and early production issues should be a thing of the past.

A year of success has allowed the company to continue forward with new product development. Several weeks ago Power Sound Audio made their first of three major announcements since the release of their XS30 sub last December. The announcement detailed a redesign of their XV15 and XS15 models. These subs were previously sold with a robust base plate instead of feet. This plate is being replaced by nylon spacers and molded rubber isolation extensions on both models. Vodhanel says the redesign is largely a response to increasing costs from their vendors and the desire to keep the cost of these models low for future customers. The design change has no effect on the subwoofers’ enclosures, says Vodhanel, and won’t affect their performance. In fact, the removal of the plate may give the subs a slight advantage in upper frequency harmonics during louder listening levels.

The original base plates were purely decorative and will be available for customers through a special order purchase. The new design, however, drops the units’ weights by roughly 15 pounds and reduces size of their overall footprints by 1.5 inches in width and depth. “[Through the redesign] we were able to maintain the same performance levels and make the products smaller and lighter. We will eventually offer both versions on our website. The original base versions will be slightly more expensive though,” explains Vodhanel. Power Sound Audio will also sell the new feet in a replacement kit to current owners of XV15 and XS15 models wishing to remove their base plates. The cost will be $49 plus shipping.


Last week, Power Sound Audio trumped its XV/XS15 announcement by unveiling the first of two new subwoofer models. The new XV30f is a sibling of the ported XV30 with some major design differences. Similar to the XV30, it houses dual 15” proprietary drivers, a massive 6” precision port, and a 750 Watt PS Bash amplifier with DSP control. The XV30f, however, is a front firing unit with stacked dual drivers, creating a cabinet that stands almost four feet high but with a footprint nearly half that of the XV30. Vodhanel says that the XV30 and XV30f have very similar performance outputs. “The new XV30f measures a little bit better in both extension and output capabilities, however the differences are not something I would call significant. [Any difference] probably wouldn’t be audible with real world source material in most rooms.”

The primary difference between the XV30 models is room placement flexibility. The XV30f has an upright orientation that minimizes its overall floor footprint. The unit can also be placed on its side which increases its footprint but minimizes its height to roughly 18 inches. Other differences between the two models, such as product weight, are negligible. While the XV30f costs slightly more to manufacture, Power Sound Audio is currently offering it at the same price as the XV30 ($1,399 shipped).

Today, Power Sound Audio is officially unveiling an audio monster that has been in Research and Development for nearly 2 years. The Triax, as it is called, weighs in at 190 lbs (unboxed, including 3 grills) and carries a lengthy list of attractive features packed inside of an enclosure measuring roughly 23 inches (H) by 26 inches (W). “Our goal was to create a subwoofer that would provide extremely deep extension, excellent sound quality, and incredible output capabilities in all the largest room environments,” says Vodhanel.

Cue the drooling. To start, it houses three (hence: Triax) all-new proprietary 15 inch drivers. Each driver features two large (3 inch diameter) voice coils wound on .008 black anodized aluminum formers, combined with a vented back plate with direct voice coil cooling. The drivers are powered by a beefy 4000 Watt SpeakerPower amplifier (8000W peak). This kind of power gives one Triax the potential to approach the maximum output capabilities of three XS30 subwoofers within an intended operating bandwidth of 5-150 Hz.

Each Triax carries two different DSP programs that dictate frequency shaping below 30 Hz. “These two programs are user selectable via an amplifier mounted switch,” explains Vodhanel. “Program One will include frequency shaping that will allow the Triax to extend into the single digits in medium to medium-large rooms. Program Two will be more suited to extremely deep extension in large to very large room areas.”

Vodhanel says that the Triax will deliver excellent sound quality with some advantages that push it slightly ahead of other Power Sound Audio subwoofer models. Of course this is the bottom-line interest for most subwoofer owners. Physically speaking, the Triax will be the first Power Sound Audio subwoofer offered with multiple finish options, including the satin black finish offered on other Power-X subwoofers and five different wood veneer choices. Look for Power Sound Audio to expand these veneer options to other subwoofer models soon. “We will be offering these real wood veneering options on our more popular models in the future. The XV15 and XS30 will both [eventually] be available in five different veneers,” says Vodhanel. He added: “Of course American made furniture grade cabinets come with a price premium, but we will make every attempt to keep the price as low as possible.”

Pricing for the new Triax will begin with a pre-order offering of $2799 shipped (satin black finish only).

For more information on Power Sound Audio’s products, or to place an order, visit their website. Also, the Home Theater Shack and Power Sound Audio are preparing to announce an exciting promotional giveaway. Details will be announced on hometheatershack.com in the very near future.

Image Credits: Power Sound Audio

Last edited by Todd Anderson; 05-22-13 at 11:46 AM.
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post #2 of 53 Old 05-21-13, 09:57 PM
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Re: Creating a rumble in the subwoofer world: Power Sound Audio follows-up an exciting first year with big news about new models

4,000 watts? Incredible! This is going to be a monster of a sub and I can't wait for us to review one... and a giveaway... say what?

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post #3 of 53 Old 05-21-13, 10:39 PM
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Re: Creating a rumble in the subwoofer world: Power Sound Audio follows-up an exciting first year with big news about new models

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Todd Anderson wrote: View Post
This kind of power gives each Triax the potential to approach the maximum output capabilities of three XS30 subwoofers within an intended operating bandwidth of 5-150 Hz.
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post #4 of 53 Old 05-21-13, 11:45 PM
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Re: Creating a rumble in the subwoofer world: Power Sound Audio follows-up an exciting first year with big news about new models

Oooohhhhh, I like that Triax

I like it even better that they will start to offer nicer finishes, have to stop drooling.

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post #5 of 53 Old 05-22-13, 05:36 AM
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Re: Creating a rumble in the subwoofer world: Power Sound Audio follows-up an exciting first year with big news about new models

It is good to see companies coming out with newer and better products! 3 years is a long time but as long as they keep producing excellent products people will buy!
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post #6 of 53 Old 05-22-13, 06:57 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Creating a rumble in the subwoofer world: Power Sound Audio follows-up an exciting first year with big news about new models

The Triax is a statement model. I'm having trouble wrapping my mind around the amount of power it can output... and the versatility of floor placement the XV30f offers is forward thinking. I'm curious to see what is coming next... I say this partly joking, but: A 250 lb quad-driver, anyone?
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post #7 of 53 Old 05-22-13, 09:25 AM
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Re: Creating a rumble in the subwoofer world: Power Sound Audio follows-up an exciting first year with big news about new models

The triax is an amazing looking sub. I'd love to see a thorough review of it and I can't wait to see the future products in the line. Looks to be some nice competition for the Seaton and JTR offerings

I hope PSA sticks around for many years to come, because it will be quite awhile before I can afford to spend anything on HT gear.
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post #8 of 53 Old 05-22-13, 10:14 AM Thread Starter
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Sure looks like PSA is on the up-swing!
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post #9 of 53 Old 05-22-13, 02:09 PM
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Re: Creating a rumble in the subwoofer world: Power Sound Audio follows-up an exciting first year with big news about new models (XV30f, Triax)

This is exciting for PSA. That Triax looks amazing...a bit out of my price range though and I'm pretty sure it would destroy my townhouse along with my neighbor's homes as well.

I love my PSA XV15 and the customer service before and after the sale has been nothing but great. I will always recommend PSA to anyone looking for a sub - they are fantastic and set at a really great price.

It's great to see new finish options coming in the future as well - the basic finish may not be for everyone but I love its durability and it disappears when the lights are out.
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post #10 of 53 Old 05-22-13, 03:30 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Creating a rumble in the subwoofer world: Power Sound Audio follows-up an exciting first year with big news about new models (XV30f, Triax)

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This is exciting for PSA. That Triax looks amazing...a bit out of my price range though and I'm pretty sure it would destroy my townhouse along with my neighbor's homes as well.

I love my PSA XV15 and the customer service before and after the sale has been nothing but great. I will always recommend PSA to anyone looking for a sub - they are fantastic and set at a really great price.

It's great to see new finish options coming in the future as well - the basic finish may not be for everyone but I love its durability and it disappears when the lights are out.
It's rare to find great products paired with great customer service, not to mention a company that takes pride in manufacturing in their products in the US.
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