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Discussion Starter #1
Just curious, are the exodus audio drivers suitable for horn type subs (I know nothing about the horn subs or their various types - but I think it was called a tuba sub).

I was trying to search for the thread that I saw where a guy said his horn sub (15") totally eclipsed his LLT sub in all area's.

Just wondering if the exodus audio subs have been used for this type of sub, or if its even possible?
 

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Just curious, are the exodus audio drivers suitable for horn type subs (I know nothing about the horn subs or their various types - but I think it was called a tuba sub).

I was trying to search for the thread that I saw where a guy said his horn sub (15") totally eclipsed his LLT sub in all area's.

Just wondering if the exodus audio subs have been used for this type of sub, or if its even possible?
Sure.... but it would have to be designed correctly. Horns in general are like acoustic transformers, they impedance match the driver to the air and you pick up LOT of efficiency over a narrow bandwidth. They also get very large because the size of the horn, has to have some relation to the wavelengths it is coupling, and with bass, you have very LONG wavelengths.

For pro-sound use, they are pretty much the cat's meow. You have a HUGE space to fill and about the only way to get enough output, is by running horn loaded devices. For home audio applications, the tradeoffs are often not worth the cost. The tradeoffs are that you only get good horn loading over a fairly narrow bandwidth, the horn has to be very large, and the build is much more complex than a simple sealed or ported box. Also.. .the response is less linear, especially in poorly designed horns. You almost have to build the room around the horn in some of the larger devices. Even in the smaller folded horns (Danley, Fitzmaurice) you have large or bandwidth limited devices and you have to decide if that tradeoff is worth it. Often horns will depend upon certain placement in the room also because the corner or a room boundary are designed as part of the horn.

I look at it this way:

What you gain:

  • Lots of SPL over the horns range of use.

What you give up:

  • Space/Size
  • Complexity
  • Bandwidth
  • Placement Flexibility
  • FR Linearity

In terms of SPL, once you get enough in-room to never hit the limits of your subs, any more is pretty much for bragging rights. You can have a system that will do 140dB @ 30Hz and what is the point? You don't need it. What you do need, and this is proven out in all the research, is smooth in-room response. The best way to get smooth in-room response is with multiple devices, and the flexibility to move them and the listening position along with a couple bands of PEQ, room measurements, and room treatments in some cases. So... horns that are large enough that they cannot be moved, are counter to those goals. You gain one thing, and you give up a range of attributes that are of clear value as proven out in all of the research of small room acoustics.

So.... yes you can design a horn around something like the Shiva-X2. I'll probably do so at some point just for the sake of having the design available for people who want to build them. Should you for the typical domestic home theater? No... not in my opinion. There are better ways to skin the cat.

Kevin Haskins
Exodus Audio
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you very much for the comprehensive reply.

Cheers.
 

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Geez Kevin how do you still have the time and energy to carefully answer our questions so well? I too second the thanks for the great response.
 

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Wow, well written!

I'm a big fan of horns...there is just something about how they couple to the air that makes them sound different. But yes, I agree with what Kevin said about proper design and size.
 

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Wow, well written!

I'm a big fan of horns...there is just something about how they couple to the air that makes them sound different. But yes, I agree with what Kevin said about proper design and size.
Well.... thanks. I will say, I love horns and the effortlessness that comes with them. If you are someone who needs to build a lot of subs, one of them should be a horn because it is a real kick having all that horsepower on tap. But.... I have to give advice based upon what fits 95% of my customers, not the 5%. For most people and most domestic situations, a traditional sub is a better fit.

I'll do a Shiva-X2 horn at some point, just not now because I have too many other prioirities.

Kevin Haskins
Exodus Audio
 

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Geez Kevin how do you still have the time and energy to carefully answer our questions so well? I too second the thanks for the great response.
Ha... I don't. Sometimes I feel like I barely get through the day. Forgive me if I drop the ball now and then.

Kevin Haskins
Exodus Audio
 

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I look at it this way:

What you gain:

  • Lots of SPL over the horns range of use.

What you give up:

  • Space/Size
  • Complexity
  • Bandwidth
  • Placement Flexibility
  • FR Linearity

Kevin Haskins
Exodus Audio
Regarding "What you give up list" relating to a horn:

  • Space/size is relative if you're using an LLT. Both are huge. Sealed would be smaller but you'd also need at least 5 of them to compete with the SPL from the same driver in a horn orientation and I'd argue 5 or 6 sealed subs would consume alot more space than 1 horn. The benefit from multiples is an even response though.
  • Complexity only exists if you designing the horn. The THT I built was already designed. I just bought the plans. I will say it's a little bit more difficult to build versus a sealed or ported enclosure, only because of the number of panels but nothing over the top. I would argue Danleys DTS-10 kit is easier than a non-prefab sealed/ported as every panel is dadoed.
  • Bandwidth may be limited on horns however if you're crossing over your sub below 80hz which is THX standard there shouldn't be an issue. Personally, I've always set my crossover at the high 60s. Personally I'll take the expense of bandwidth to gain higher SPL where I need it. Even with this lower crossover, the Horn excels in providing the midbass slam LLT's lack.
  • Placement flexibility is limited. The THT needs to be boundary loaded against a wall and ideally a corner. I am not sure of to many people who place their subs in the middle of the room though so this probably isn't an issue for most.
  • FR Linearity, I'd argue this is extremely dependent on the room. Any alignment is dependent upon it's surroundings. In my case the THT measured down well below 10hz into the single digits rather flat but room gain plays into this measurement. Interestingly enough my LLT doesn't measure the same flat response that low.
 

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What you gain:

  • Lots of SPL over the horns range of use.

What you give up:

  • Space/Size
  • Complexity
  • Bandwidth
  • Placement Flexibility
  • FR Linearity
Don't forget that horns are one of the most economical ways to take control over the polar response too. Power response is every bit as important (if not more important) than just the on-axis response. Lower distortion and the ability to use smaller amplifiers are other huge benefits too.

As far as your list of tradeoffs...

One of my favorite sounding speakers is a fully hornloaded 2-way that covers 30Hz to 20kHz at 108dB sensitivity with an extremely flat frequency response AND constant coverage. It also tucks into the corners real nice, which doesn't take up much usable floorspace. It's certainly a complex design, but that doesn't matter when purchasing a finished product.
 

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This is my forum guys.... and I'd ask you let me advice my customers how I see fit. If you want to debate the merits of horns vs. traditional direct radiators, there are other places to do that. The intent of THIS forum, is for me to give advice about how to best use the Exodus drivers. If I choose to point people toward solutions that don't include your favorite, then that is my prerogative. You can argue the merits of one approach vs. another in the general forums and beat the horse until it is dead there.

I love horns, I just don't think they are the best solution for most of my customers.

Kevin Haskins
Exodus Audio
 
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