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Need Advice for Bass Shakers

15925 Views 19 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  Newbie2014
I am pondering getting 2 aura bass shakers for my couch to add some effect to movies and music.
Thinking of these... http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?Partnumber=299-028

My main question is how best to power them with my current setup. I have a pioneer elite vsx-92txh receiver with a pair of paradigm monitor 7's... plus some jbl surrounds for 7.1

My subwoofer is home built powered by a Nady XA-900 hooked into the subwoofer output spot... I only see one subwoofer spot.

Anyway I don't want to sacrifice any power to the subwoofer, so I'd rather not use the Nady for the bass shakers as well as the subwoofer.

I'm willing to buy another amplifier.... maybe this one.... http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?Partnumber=300-812

Or a different amplifier if you guys suggest something better.

So, I'm wondering if there is a way to hook up these bass shakers with my current setup without sacrificing any power or sound quality from the receiver or subwoofer amp (Nady).

Any suggestions would be appreciated.

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Just use a simply Y splitter on the sub pre out. As for amplification, I'd say go as cheap as you can. "noise" isn't really an issue with shakers, so high quality isn't really important in this application. I previously had a clark TST, and I powered it with a 20 year old receiver I found in my dad's garage. I never felt the need to upgrade.
Cool. That sounds easy. So buying a splitter will not decrease the signal or anything from the subwoofer?

Second question... do you think 2 of these will be enough for a 2-3 person couch?

And, now that I did some more research.... http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?Partnumber=300-861

Which would be better... 2 aura bass shakers or one of those tactile transducers?

Never used the auras, so I can't be sure. Look in the specs for a rated force per watt. I don't think the splitter will cause issues.
I favor the Auras over the Clark. Although I have not tried the most expensive Clark TST the cheaper ones did not work well in the basement (concrete floor). My friend, on the other hand, did try my Clarks at his house (elevated wooden floor) and it was a huge difference.

I like the Auras because they can be used with music, TV, and movies. My only complaint (with movies) is they do not play low for big subwoofer systems (Pros peak at 40Hz). I run seven of the Pros in my recliner and use a 350w plate amp to get the most out of them. If you are only running two you should be able to get away with a 150w or bigger plate amp.

Just my two cents hope it helps. Let me know if you need more info.

...Second question... do you think 2 of these will be enough for a 2-3 person couch?...
I have one Aura in my second row loveseat and it works well. I think you'd be okay with two although it's probably a personal preference thing.
I have 6 of Aura Bass Pros wired up to 3 seats. Love em. Definitely get them. Without going through great lengths, here's the quick and dirty:

1) Yes, you split the LFE line and run the signal to another amp.

2) You will want to buy a 50 hz low pass fmod from parts express and put that in your LFE line after the split. This limits the signal going to your bass shaker amp to 50Hz and below. We found that the experience without the fmod was as good... too much bass from music in movies was being reproduced by the bass shakers. The fmod helps to keep those shakers focused on rumbling what you want: gun shots, explosions, roar of motors, etc.

3) The bass shakers are 4 ohm devices, so you need to wire them in series so they match-up with your amp. Easy to do and a quick net search will show you how to do this if you aren't familiar with it.

4) I found my amp had trouble powering them... that is until I went into my amp's menu and cranked the bass output to +10. Now, the experience is perfect.

5) Mounting them is everything. They need to be mounted firing UP into your seat.

Here are two threads on a Polk Audio user forum where I detailed my install experience and trouble shooting (thread number 1)... thread number 2 is one in which I answered someone else's post about shakers. I'm 27dnast in the threads.

Thread 1: http://www.polkaudio.com/forums/sho...ll-advice-for-bass-shaker&highlight=aura+bass

Thread 2: http://www.polkaudio.com/forums/showthread.php?125277-Bass-shakers.....&p=1681552#post1681552

Oh... in answer to your final question... I would probably install 4 in a 2-3 person couch. Be prepared to add some wood mounting points if your couch doesn't have secure places to install them. I hope this all helps.
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Thanks for the help guys. Well, I ended up trying the 209 clark and the amp i posted in the first post.... 150 watts bridged.

I mounted a board from front to back on the bottom middle of my couch, then mounted the clark to that.

Didn't shake enough for some reason, except if I turned everything up. I had to turn the reciever's sub output up to max, and then the amp up to max, and then still had to turn the volume up to get a fair amount of shaking. Not pleased with that result.

So I'm changing to the aura's and planning to send the clark back. I purchased 2 aura pros and they are on the way. Hoping that they are more efficient than the clark. I don't want to have to turn the system all the way up to get a little shake.

I will keep you posted.
Got the 2 aura pro's in the mail today. Hooked them up and still not 100% satisfied yet. They do seem to shake more than the single clark did, but I still have to turn the subwoofer channel level on the AVR all the way up, and then the shaker amp all the way up to get them shaking good.

I'm not a fan of turning amps up to the max.

I just don't get it, i read posts elsewhere from people saying that they are using a 70 watt plate amp with these and they are getting more shake than they need. And people say these shakers don't need much power.

I'm wondering if I need a bigger amp now or what?

Another question for you guys... how do you know when you've turned these shakers up to their max? With a speaker, you can kind of tell by excursion, but how do I tell with these?

I'm gonna call PE tomorrow and see what their experts say, but any more advice here is appreciated... or any recommendations on a different/better amp for these.

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Sounds like there's something wrong here. Try hooking directly to your left or right main speaker wire. See if that feels more forceful.
I am sure 70w amp will run the Pros but it is not enough to really push them. You are prolly running the Pros in series which will cause the ohm value to be near 7 to 8 ohms which means they will be lucky to see 70w from that amp. I know it is overkill but I would suggest a 200w or 250w plate amp and that should leave you some adjustment when all is said and done. Pros are power hungry !!!

Just my two cents hope it helps.

The Clark produces more force per watt than the auras. I had one bolted directly to my couch, and it would absolutely rattle your teeth with 70 watts. With 150 watts, the couch would literally move on hardwood floors if no one was sitting on it. If you weren't getting enough, I'm concerned that something is hooked up incorrectly.
Ok, well I figured out a way to make it work. I had my dad come over with some of his testing tools and an old receiver we had laying around.

So I hooked up the shakers to the old receiver instead of that new dayton amp, and we used the PHONO output and wow, it works! I can only turn the volume on the old receiver up a little way.

So finally we got it working. Still trying to tweak the system though.

My dad thinks it had something to do with the volts that the new amp was getting from the subwoofer output. And apparently the PHONO spot on the old receiver must amplify that signal or something.

But, sucky thing is I don't have a lowpass filter to play with like I did on the Dayton amp. It is still crossed at 80hz per the AVR's subwoofer output, but I think I'd like that to be lower on these shakers.

Seems like I am getting unnecessary rumbles on parts of movies that aren't really hitting low. And if I just turn the volume down, then the explosions are minor. Seems like it's all or none right now. So I have some tweaking to do I guess.

Not sure if that's a byproduct of the funky way I have it set up or not.

EDIT::: after reading previous posts again, I just bought the 50hz fmod crossover things from PE. So hopefully those will work.

FYI.... I did test the Clark out and it seemed to not work as well compared to these aura shakers with this setup.
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As I said, Clark's (by spec) are considerably more powerful. I think you should be careful about disrespecting company's gear when you've admitted you had it hooked up wrong during your "test".
I wasn't disrespecting Clarks, just giving my findings for my current setup. I don't think I sounded too harsh when I compared the two, but I will change my words from the previous post.

I thought forums like these are where we are supposed to give our opinions? It's been hard finding comparisons from people who have actually owned both the auras and the clark, so I thought I'd give my findings.

No offense clark, the auras worked better for me.
It is easy to think one or the other is better but it typically depends on environment, installation, and the quality of the source you are using. I first started out with the Buttkicker but it was overkill. Worked great with movies but harsh when it came to music or TV. The Clark work good but even with the crossover turn down I was still getting the real deep voice people talking thru the chair when all I want was the gunshots and booms. The Auras on the other hand work well for movies, music and TV but it took a lot of them were the Clark and Buttkicker were just a single device.

With that being said I sold the two Clarks to a friend who install both in his couch. The difference was unbelievable. The entire couch would shake with plenty of tactical vibration from the floor. Pictures were rattling and stuff in the next room was even being shaking slightly. I haft to attribute the results to his elevated floor vs. my concrete bunker.

One down side to the Auras is the lack of low frequency response to match the big subs during movies. When the booms hit the subs were still going after the Auras had peter-out. To compensate I took out the 18”s and 15”s and went back with 12”s and 10”s to get a better match with the Auras. Did I lose some bottom end, of course but the blend has never been better. Two more cents added.

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Just thought I'd give an update:

I ended up trying 4 aura shakers under my couch, used the FMOD 50hz crossover, and still wasn't satisfied. Seemed to vibrate a good deal, but it wasn't the low explosion bass I wanted. Plus it was still too much vibration during 80% of the movies, not just explosions.

So I bought a buttkicker LFE for $179 and a buttkicker BKA300-4NW amp for $129.... which total wasn't much more than I spent on the aura shaker setup.

Now this is exactly what I was looking for. Shakes the couch with LOW explosion bass at all the appropriate times, and none of the inappropriate times. Amp has plenty of power, and the shaker can shake way more than I'd need. This feels like more realistic of a sensation than just the vibration from the aura's.

Buttkicker wins by a mile for my setup. Wish I would have went that way from the beginning.
I have 2 buttkicker transducers hooked up to my platform that my 4 recliners sit on and they work great. The amp you get with the buttkickers I believe it is a BKA-10004a has all the adjustments you need to dial them in nice. Good luck with your new toys.......
I am, as my Username says, a newbie to the audiophile world, so please forgive the newbie post to a very old thread: I'm considering getting an AuraSound AST-2B-4 Pro Bass Shaker Tactile Transducer (Model: AST-2B-4), and I know these can be easily hooked up to an amplifier. But my question is, can I use a simple stereo or Sony Dream machine iPod docking station as an amplifier? and if so, what connectors would I need to power the bass shaker? I am looking for the cheapest, easiest way to get some bang for my movie-viewing buck. Thank you!
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