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I'm thinking about adding a second sub to my HT room. I currently have a Reaction Audio BPS-212 subwoofer. I originally was going to purchase an HSU, SVS, or Rythmik but then the RA subs came out and for $400 I took a gamble on the BPS-212. It's a sealed sub with 2 12" bi-polar drivers and I think a 300w amp. BTW, I know RA is no more so let's keep this conversation to what sub I should get to add to this. I've liked this sub and it was a huge improvement over 10 year old Energy 10" 150w sub. Since I've purchased the sub I've moved and now have a 12x16x8 HT room. I might knock down a wall and make the room 12x24 and add some seating. Since Black Friday is coming I'm looking at sales and thinking of adding a 2nd sub. I'd like to add a ported sub to increase output and have something that plays below 20hz. The main contenders have been the Rythmik LV12R and HSU VTF2 MK5. I'd like to stay under $600, however if there's a good deal I might go up to $800.

My main questions are should I be concerned about paring one of these with the BPS-212 being that it's sealed vs ported (please answer this in plain english for a simple guy to understand)? Could I used the BPS-212 as more of a mid-bass sub and use the ported sub for deeper bass? I've never heard anything bad about Rythmik or HSU and I'm sure I'd be happy with both, but any reason why 1 might work better in my scenario than the other? Also, I currently have a chance at getting a 2 year old LV12R for $450. Should I just do that? Thanks!
 

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Lots of good questions.

Generally, the problem you'll find when mixing sub models is that a weaker sub might not be able to keep up with a stronger sub...and simply turning down the gain on the weaker sub isn't a great solution to allowing it to keep stride with the weaker sub. Personally, I don't see a problem with mixing or matching ported vs sealed along as their power ratings are relatively comparable...and, no, I don't think you'd gain much impact by using your BPS-212 as a mid-bass module.

The problem is that you have a relatively large room that could eventually become much larger! I can't seem to find much information on your BPS-212...do you have any output information on it?

Right now, how do feel about the bass output from your RA speaker?

Both HSU and Rhythmik are solid brands...btw.
 

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Lots of good questions.

Generally, the problem you'll find when mixing sub models is that a weaker sub might not be able to keep up with a stronger sub...and simply turning down the gain on the weaker sub isn't a great solution to allowing it to keep stride with the weaker sub. Personally, I don't see a problem with mixing or matching ported vs sealed along as their power ratings are relatively comparable...and, no, I don't think you'd gain much impact by using your BPS-212 as a mid-bass module.

The problem is that you have a relatively large room that could eventually become much larger! I can't seem to find much information on your BPS-212...do you have any output information on it?

Right now, how do feel about the bass output from your RA speaker?

Both HSU and Rhythmik are solid brands...btw.
Since RA isn't around anymore and I don't think there were any pro reviews of the BPS-212 I can't really find specs on it. I did see somewhere that someone posted it had a frequency response of 23hz (+/-3db). I've never tried measuring it, but I can say that it does make the walls vibrate and you can feel the vibrations in the room above as well. I'm curious about Rythmik and HSU because I want a sub that has great SQ for music and extension below 20hz for movies (but I don't need a ton of output below 20hz). I was going to originally get a Rythmik or HSU so I sometimes wonder if I'm missing out because I always read that the SQ on those subs are excellent. I don't have much of a reference point with the BPS-212 since there isn't a lot of feedback on it, RA isn't around anymore, and my previous sub was so outdated by the time I upgraded. One thought is to get either the Rythmik or HSU, test them vs the BPS-212 and then either keep both if I can integrate them, or return the new one if I prefer the BPS-212, or keep the new one and sell the BPS-212 and then add a 2nd of the one I keep later. I guess the cost to that is the time, energy and shipping costs. Plus, I really don't like returning products once I purchase them unless they really don't live up to the expectations.
 

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Maybe a pair of those nsd's from SVS that just went on sale for 399? That should be an easy setup, and hit budget. I also think mixing ported and sealed isn't a big deal either but I prefer ported. If you did put the SVS's in there, all 3(4 if you can) will be running at a lower gain level individually but have more output and available headroom so the weakest sub would have a better chance of survival.


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Not a bad thought... that would definitely sneak you by on your budget and inject quite a bit of additional power.

My gut is telling me you need a slightly larger sub than ones you've targeted... but I don't have any calculations to back it up. When it comes to subs...you can certainly have too little, but you can never have too much.
 

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I'll skip telling my BPS-212 story... :rolleyesno:

As Todd suggested, level matching disparate subwoofers is not an ideal solution. It can be done, but usually the better sub will be dragged down to the point it may ultimately impact SQ and output performance. That can become particularly acute when very taxing material is used, like some of the soundtracks found on today's blu-rays. Where I might have a different opinion though is in regards to the benefit of mixing sealed and ported alignments. Their respective characteristics are different enough that integration can be rather challenging. If you aren't comfortable with using measurement equipment you might consider sticking with just one type.

If you do want to explore ported subwoofers I'd suggest the Rythmik LVX12, the bigger brother of the LV12R. The former will have more output and greater depth. For the same reason, you might look into the VTF3 instead of the VTF 2. Another option would be the SVS PB-2000.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I'll skip telling my BPS-212 story... :rolleyesno:

If you do want to explore ported subwoofers I'd suggest the Rythmik LVX12, the bigger brother of the LV12R. The former will have more output and greater depth. For the same reason, you might look into the VTF3 instead of the VTF 2. Another option would be the SVS PB-2000.

I remember eagerly waiting for your review but hearing about delay after delay on delivery of the sub....

Thank you both for your input. Funny because I keep thinking about all of those models as well. Perhaps selling the BPS-212 and using the funds to up my budget. I saw Rythmik had a b-stock LVX12 and just read your review on the HSU VTF-3 and it sounds awesome. Since you've heard both Rythmik and HSU products would you be able to say one has better SQ than another? I've always wanted to hear Rythmik's servo technology and the fact that Salk and Ascend sell their subs says a lot to me as I'm a former Salk owner and love his products. However, everything I read about HSU is that they sound amazing and they have a lot of tuning options. So, it's servo vs multi-port tuning...
 

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I remember eagerly waiting for your review but hearing about delay after delay on delivery of the sub....

Thank you both for your input. Funny because I keep thinking about all of those models as well. Perhaps selling the BPS-212 and using the funds to up my budget. I saw Rythmik had a b-stock LVX12 and just read your review on the HSU VTF-3 and it sounds awesome. Since you've heard both Rythmik and HSU products would you be able to say one has better SQ than another? I've always wanted to hear Rythmik's servo technology and the fact that Salk and Ascend sell their subs says a lot to me as I'm a former Salk owner and love his products. However, everything I read about HSU is that they sound amazing and they have a lot of tuning options. So, it's servo vs multi-port tuning...
I had a BPS212 in my possession, and right from the get-go it made me question RA (it was actually so bad I sent it back without doing a review). There's a lot that went on behind the scenes with regards to those delays you mentioned - which were associated to other models, not the BPS212 - but the bottom line is I wish I had voiced my concerns sooner. A lot of people lost money when they imploded and I often wonder if I could have somehow prevented a few of them from getting burned had I opened my mouth. Several years prior I questioned another fringe ID company named eD (Elemental Designs), highlighting some disturbing trends about their incessant delays and constant QC issues. Sound familiar? Their fanboys trashed me for having the audacity to call out one of the ID darlings. Funny thing is, less than 1 year later they collapsed and went bankrupt. eD fleeced a lot of people too, so it was like deja-vu all over again - whenever I questioned RA I found myself getting the same type of backlash I got from the eD faithful, so instead of fighting this time I chose to walked away. Bad idea. Be that as it may...

A few years ago when people mentioned SQ Rythmik was generally the name on the top of their list. To some extent that's probably still true, but HSU has definitely closed the gap. I've been fortunate enough to hear and review several of their newer models, and they are quite good. Bottom line is you can't go wrong with either of them, so whichever you choose it's not like the decision will be a bad one.
 

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I had a BPS212 in my possession, and right from the get-go it made me question RA (it was actually so bad I sent it back without doing a review). There's a lot that went on behind the scenes with regards to those delays you mentioned - which were associated to other models, not the BPS212 - but the bottom line is I wish I had voiced my concerns sooner. A lot of people lost money when they imploded and I often wonder if I could have somehow prevented a few of them from getting burned had I opened my mouth. Several years prior I questioned another fringe ID company named eD (Elemental Designs), highlighting some disturbing trends about their incessant delays and constant QC issues. Sound familiar? Their fanboys trashed me for having the audacity to call out one of the ID darlings. Funny thing is, less than 1 year later they collapsed and went bankrupt. eD fleeced a lot of people too, so it was like deja-vu all over again - whenever I questioned RA I found myself getting the same type of backlash I got from the eD faithful, so instead of fighting this time I chose to walked away. Bad idea. Be that as it may...

A few years ago when people mentioned SQ Rythmik was generally the name on the top of their list. To some extent that's probably still true, but HSU has definitely closed the gap. I've been fortunate enough to hear and review several of their newer models, and they are quite good. Bottom line is you can't go wrong with either of them, so whichever you choose it's not like the decision will be a bad one.
I wouldn't beat yourself up. People knew that a new company is a risk to buy from - myself included. I also don't think that some of these companies are maliciously trying to rip people off. I think they intend to make a good product, but they're often under capitalized and underestimated the "customer factor." The cost of dealing with people and providing great service in both capital and time can sink a company. Especially when your product is shipping 60-120lb products around and you offer a generous risk free trial with customers that have very high expectations. Anyway, I just think some of these companies are run by people who are good at creating the product, but maybe aren't the best business people.

Anyway, I'm still shopping. I'm now trying to decide on the Rythmik LVX12 (on sale for $700 shipped) or the Outlaw X12 (on sale for $550 shipped or 2 for $1000). I have a $200 Visa Gift Card burning a hole in my pocket. Using that I'm seriously thinking of getting 2 Outlaws and selling the BPS212. I'd hope to get around $300 for it so my net on the Outlaws might be $500 for 2. That's hard to beat and I don't even think I need 2 in my room, which is only 12x16x8. On paper the Outlaws are right there with the Rythmik and I think they look better. However, I always said my next sub would be a Rythmik and I'm scared if I don't get one I'll still have a scratch to itch no matter how good the Outlaws are. Thoughts?
 

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Get the best 2 matching subs you can afford. Take the time to set them up properly and you'll be a happy camper.
 

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Anyway, I'm still shopping. I'm now trying to decide on the Rythmik LVX12 (on sale for $700 shipped) or the Outlaw X12 (on sale for $550 shipped or 2 for $1000). I have a $200 Visa Gift Card burning a hole in my pocket. Using that I'm seriously thinking of getting 2 Outlaws and selling the BPS212. I'd hope to get around $300 for it so my net on the Outlaws might be $500 for 2. That's hard to beat and I don't even think I need 2 in my room, which is only 12x16x8. On paper the Outlaws are right there with the Rythmik and I think they look better. However, I always said my next sub would be a Rythmik and I'm scared if I don't get one I'll still have a scratch to itch no matter how good the Outlaws are. Thoughts?
Outlaw subs are not designed for the same customer that the Rythmik's are; the former is more about output while the latter favors SQ and precision (not that the Rythmik subwoofers don't have solid output, of course). You can increase output by adding more of the same subwoofer, but SQ will never improve no matter how many average subwoofers you hook up.
 

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Yep. Do the rythmik.


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Get the best 2 matching subs you can afford. Take the time to set them up properly and you'll be a happy camper.


I think I would buy at least one rythmik now, and put any extra in a pot to buy a second one as soon as you can. Jims right about the average sub comment, and unfortunately IMO the outlaw seems to fit. They always have reviewed good, but just never seem to be deserving of the top pick spot.


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Outlaw subs are not designed for the same customer that the Rythmik's are; the former is more about output while the latter favors SQ and precision (not that the Rythmik subwoofers don't have solid output, of course). You can increase output by adding more of the same subwoofer, but SQ will never improve no matter how many average subwoofers you hook up.
Thanks Jim. This is exactly what I was thinking after my last post. I think the outlaws are probably great. However, I also know that I'd always be wondering if the Rythmik would sound better. And, I really do like listening to music down there when I get a chance. I think the only thing to do is get the Rythmik. My room isn't even really big enough to fit 2 subs right now. I may knock a wall down to make it 12x24 and add seating and if so I'll budget for an additional sub at that time. Being that my BPS212 has enough output to make the house shake I think the Rythmik will be more than enough.

Thanks for the input everyone. There's not a lot of comments on the LVX12 as it seems most people get the LV12R or a higher up model so I'll post back my thoughts once I have it for a while.
 

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Thanks for the input everyone. There's not a lot of comments on the LVX12 as it seems most people get the LV12R or a higher up model so I'll post back my thoughts once I have it for a while.
That will change as time goes on; the LVX12 can measure its existence in months, while the LV12R is in years.
 

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That will change as time goes on; the LVX12 can measure its existence in months, while the LV12R is in years.
Is a review potentially in the works?

Just got notice that my LVX12 is at UPS ready for pickup, but I'm too busy with work so I can't get it until Thursday. Might have a sick day coming!>:)
 

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Is a review potentially in the works?
Nothing planned currently, but you never know with me. ;)


Just got notice that my LVX12 is at UPS ready for pickup, but I'm too busy with work so I can't get it until Thursday. Might have a sick day coming!>:)
Guess we know what you'll be doing this weekend, eh? Be sure to come back and post your thoughts after you've had a chance to give it a work out. Might be better to start a new thread though, that way people searching for info on an LVX12 would be able to find it easier.
 

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Nothing planned currently, but you never know with me. ;)




Guess we know what you'll be doing this weekend, eh? Be sure to come back and post your thoughts after you've had a chance to give it a work out. Might be better to start a new thread though, that way people searching for info on an LVX12 would be able to find it easier.
I will. I actually had a window and was able to get the sub home, unpacked and hooked up. I watched about 20 minutes of video clips and listened to 3-4 parts of songs. My initially reaction is holy c%&p! The bass is so much more defined and clean sounding than my previous sub. I'm also surprised the output is so much more. The old sub, reaction audio bps-212, had dual 12" active drivers and was no slouch in my room. It could easily get the walls and couch vibrating, but the LVX12 actually knocked an access panel off -- no joke! Plus I only had the volume or output dial turned to just past 50%. I don't think I'll be needing dual subs in my room. I will write more after I spend some time with it in a new thread.

Also, I just wanted to say that I don't know how you all review subs. This sub is a fairly average in size and weight compared to a lot of ID subs I read about. I think its about 70lbs and a 12" driver in a 17"x20"x22" cabinet. I was exhausted getting this thing unpacked and moved to my basement room. I couldn't imagine moving some of the 15", 18" and larger subs, and then repacking them to be shipped back. I'm sure you have special tools, but that's a work out.
 

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I will. I actually had a window and was able to get the sub home, unpacked and hooked up. I watched about 20 minutes of video clips and listened to 3-4 parts of songs. My initially reaction is holy c%&p! The bass is so much more defined and clean sounding than my previous sub. I'm also surprised the output is so much more. The old sub, reaction audio bps-212, had dual 12" active drivers and was no slouch in my room. It could easily get the walls and couch vibrating, but the LVX12 actually knocked an access panel off -- no joke! Plus I only had the volume or output dial turned to just past 50%. I don't think I'll be needing dual subs in my room. I will write more after I spend some time with it in a new thread.
I'm actually not surprised to hear you say that. Having had my hands on a BPS-212 for a short while I know what you are listening to, and it's not in the same league as a Rythmik. You now have a subwoofer designed by a gifted engineer, one who is very passionate about accuracy and precision. What you had with the RA is a sub tossed together by an ex-heavy metal guitarist dabbling in the industry after his band broke up. It was off-the-shelf parts thrown into a generic cabinet, with no design or engineering behind it. Think DIY gone wrong.


Also, I just wanted to say that I don't know how you all review subs. This sub is a fairly average in size and weight compared to a lot of ID subs I read about. I think its about 70lbs and a 12" driver in a 17"x20"x22" cabinet. I was exhausted getting this thing unpacked and moved to my basement room. I couldn't imagine moving some of the 15", 18" and larger subs, and then repacking them to be shipped back. I'm sure you have special tools, but that's a work out.
I've had to wrestle around subs over 4 feet tall, along with those that weighed in excess of 200 pounds, and it can get a bit intimidating sometimes. The one I'm evaluating now is 122 pounds, and yes doing that by yourself can be extremely difficult. I have a hand truck, dollies and those pucks that allow you to slide heavy things across carpet, but in the end it's just me and the beast. And as you noted, unpacking/repacking can be the most grueling part. Manufacturers trust me with a brand new - and quite often very expensive product - so I take that responsibility seriously. I want to return everything in pristine condition, which demands a lot of time, effort and attention to accomplish.
 

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I'm actually not surprised to hear you say that. Having had my hands on a BPS-212 for a short while I know what you are listening to, and it's not in the same league as a Rythmik. You now have a subwoofer designed by a gifted engineer, one who is very passionate about accuracy and precision. What you had with the RA is a sub tossed together by an ex-heavy metal guitarist dabbling in the industry after his band broke up. It was off-the-shelf parts thrown into a generic cabinet, with no design or engineering behind it. Think DIY gone wrong.
Easy now! I've get to resell this thing. After that let the dogs loose. :wink2:
 
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