SVS PB12-Plus/2 review - Lyd & Bilde (English version) - Home Theater Forum and Systems -

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post #1 of 6 Old 03-27-07, 01:20 PM Thread Starter
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SVS PB12-Plus/2 review - Lyd & Bilde (English version)

Monster bass

If you are the kind of person that can not get enough bass, keep on reading! We have put SVS’s largest model to the test, and it will rock both your senses and your furniture.

It came as a shock to us when the shipping container was delivered to our office, and our first thought was that the importer had sent us TWO subs? But after removing the packaging we realized that it was one BIG sub, the largest one in SVS’s program. To be correct there is a more expensive “Ultra” version on the market in the US, but the latest version of the db12 drivers in the Plus are supposed to come so close to the performance of the top model that it was decided to not import the Ultras.

Not very discreet
You can forget every thought of hiding this sub. PB12 Plus/2 is definitely the largest and most dominating sub we have had in our test room, and the pictures only serve to tell half of it. Buying without seeing it first is not recommended if you need approval from the master of the manor! In the standard finish ‘Texture Black’ the sub is not much to look at, fortunately for an increase in price it is also available in real wood, or piano gloss. This is worth considering if you are planning on placing the sub in your living room.

It is obvious that SVS have taken a different path compared to many other subwoofer manufacturers who focuses on making their products more compact. Modern filter- and amplifier technology makes it possible to compensate for a small enclosure by using EQ to raise the level where the bass otherwise would roll off. This will give you impressive bass from a small enclosure, but it will also limit the dynamics, and the absolutely deepest frequencies.

You can easily fit 3 or 4 compact subs inside the enclosure of the SVS. Two sturdy 12” bass drivers are mounted on the underside of the enclosure pointing downwards. On the backside you will find 3 brutal ports, which tell us that the lounge capacity of this sub is massive. If your cat goes missing chances are that it has crawled in through one of the ports! Not that it would stay there for long when you fire up the 900 watt amplifier.

Unlike its smaller brother, the PB10 the PB12 Plus/2 has a built in crossover that makes it easier to use in a stereo setup. If used with a processor or surround receiver you can choose to disable the filter. In addition there are 3 different tuning options that you can use for adjusting the sub to your room, and your preferences. By blocking on or two ports with foam plugs, and turning a knob you can adjust the lower limit of the sub to 16, 20 or 25 Hz. Each of the options changes the frequency response somewhat. You will find the deepest bass with the sub in 16 Hz mode, while 25 Hz sacrifices a little deep bass for more overall SPL. After some trial end error we ended up using the 20 Hz tune.

Genuine deep bass
In this case the numbers are not empty words. PB12 Plus/2 plays sensationally deep. For many of our test albums it was like adding an extra dimension. The weight of Jason Newsteds bass guitar on Metallica’s “Black Album” is massive, and the subwoofer reproduces each note with amazing purity, ease and precision. The sub also has an extraordinary ability to pressurize the room. The entire room is filled with bass that can be both felt and heard. The musical advantages are obvious, and they do not limit themselves to bass heavy rap music. The deep bass adds an increased feeling of size and space to the sound. The sound stage becomes more precise, and the reproduction of voices more clear.

Many big subwoofers with impressive deep bass characteristics can be perceived as slow. PB12 Plus/2 on the other hand keeps up with even the fastest bass lines without breaking a sweat. You do not get the feeling that the sub is applying slowing down the music, on the contrary it ads energy and agility. Still, there are other subwoofers that give a tighter and more rhythmic impression of the upper frequencies, typically from 60-70 Hz and up. But, those subwoofers rarely extend below 40 Hz, and that is bass, not deep bass.

Raw Power
Even though this sub has some pristine musical qualities it is in the home cinema that it really shines. PB12 Plus/2 is one bad sub! With the superhero movie “Fantastic Four” in the DVD player we were sent of on a rollercoaster ride we will never forget. The SVS is capable of pumping out incredible amounts of deep bass. For those who have been passengers in a car powered by a huge American V8, it is a similar feeling: You are pushed back into your seat, and you can do nothing but hold on for your life! The sound is extremely loud, and the bass is visceral. The heavy footsteps of “The Thing” set the floor in motion, whilst the explosions can be felt in your bones. More then once during the test we just looked at each other and grinned from ear to ear because this was good fun! A good example of how important fast, dynamic and brutal bass is for the movie experience is experiencing Kill Bill 2 with this subwoofer. Skip forward to the scene where Beatrix is lurking outside Bill’s brother, Bud’s caravan. In the moment she opens the door and get shot there is a violent hit in the deep bass. With the volume set high the PB12 Plus/2 delivers a hit that feels like taking a punch in the gut. But it is not painful, it feels good!

Too much?
Let there be no doubt, this is a spectacular subwoofer with powerful and massive deep bass. The question is if it can become too much for some. When you have money burning a hole in your pocket it is easy to buy the most expensive model without considering if you need, or can exploit the capabilities of the product fully. This subwoofer goes so loud and deep that it will take a large room to do it justice, and your speakers and amplifiers must be up to the task of keeping up with it. This does not imply that the PB12 Plus/2 can not do a good job in a smaller room, but it may be that two smaller subwoofers (for example SVS PB10) in many cases will be a just as good a solution. What you eventually will lose in db and Hz you will gain in the form of better coherence in the sound stage. The ultimate deal would off course be two Plus/2’s, but for that you would need to be either deaf, or a certified lunatic...

If what you are after is a real mans sub for a reasonable price, this is a good choice. PB12 Plus/2 plays louder, and digs deeper then most subs we have tested, regardless of price. There are more refined specimens of the subwoofer breed, but you would have to look long and hard to find one that delivers bass this physical and hard hitting. Anyhow it can pay of to consider you own need and limitations, because this subwoofer can become pointlessly big if your room and the rest of your equipment are not up to its standard. On the other hand, if you can give it the surroundings it deserves there is no reason for any doubt. This is a subwoofer that you will either love or hate, depending on what side of the wall you are!

Click here for the full and original review!

Best regards,
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post #2 of 6 Old 03-27-07, 01:29 PM
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Re: SVS PB12-Plus/2 review - Lyd & Bilde (English version)

I couldn't agree more... and I've got a pair. Great review...

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post #3 of 6 Old 03-28-07, 10:05 AM
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Re: SVS PB12-Plus/2 review - Lyd & Bilde (English version)

I have that same sub in a relatively small room (11' X 15" vaulted ceiling). although it is possible to over power the room, with proper setup, it is akin to my getting a test ride in one of my patient's Carol Shelby Cobra! (0-60 in less than 4 seconds). The low bass impact is worth every penny I spent and is just plain fun! Dennis

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post #4 of 6 Old 03-29-07, 03:18 AM
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Re: SVS PB12-Plus/2 review - Lyd & Bilde (English version)

I bought my first plus2 about 3 years ago. It is so easy to get used to just how good these guys are and take it for granted. . . I got myself in a tight sold that sub thinking I'll get a smaller one for temporary use just for the time being. . . Big mistake. . .

I'll have another one shortly. Working on it now. It is true what they say "You can't go back". Once you experience it you'll never be satisfied with less. . .
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post #5 of 6 Old 06-07-07, 09:34 PM
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Re: SVS PB12-Plus/2 review - Lyd & Bilde (English version)

I know I love mine--It fills my 4600 cubic feet room to gut wrenching levels. I can and do regularly hit 120db's on my meter in my seated position.
post #6 of 6 Old 08-11-07, 09:56 AM
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Re: SVS PB12-Plus/2 review - Lyd & Bilde (English version)

I too have a pb12+2 and my family and I enjoy it imensely. What I need to know is how much of an audibile/feel/sound/sensational difference is there between using the older 12.2 drivers over upgrading to the 12.3 version? Also, how long do you think it will be until they come out with a 12.4 woofer?



bilde , english , lyd , pb12plus or 2 , review , svs , version

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