Subwoofers are designed to reproduce the audio frequencies under 200Hz. These consist of the low-frequency effects (LFE) track - the .1 - and bass-managed content from the speaker system. Bass management is a function of the home theater AVR or pre-pro and re-directs bass below a specific crossover frequency - normally 80Hz - to the subwoofer.
The cinema standard for sound pressure level (SPL) output per speaker at the main seat is 85dB program + 30dB headroom. However, few home theater enthusiasts listen at true cinema levels, so you can typically relax output requirements by 3 or 6dB. On top of this, we need to add some additional headroom for equalization and bass-managed content from the speaker system.
Flat frequency response, with extension to 20Hz at the -3dB point. Once the sub is placed in a room, its response will be non-flat due to room modes. Using multiple subs is, therefore, a prerequisite for smoother and more consistent bass across multiple seats. Typically we will place one sub in each corner, but an engineered answer to 'how many and where?' requires design work.
High output to meet SPL requirements. Since it takes two sealed subs to equal one ported in terms of output <40Hz, we recommend ported subwoofers. Typically we will use four 12" or 15" ported subs, but selecting the right subs for your theater requires design work.
Shallow depth to integrate into speaker baffle walls and hide behind stretch fabric. We prefer subs to be <20" including clearance for cable management at the rear, which unfortunately rules out most commercial ported subs.
Built-in digital signal processing allows the best integration of multiple subwoofers, ideally: level, delay, and polarity. For example, the rear pair need delay and level adjustments with our typical four subs in corners approach.
Triggered turn on / off so the sub can start up and shut down with the rest of the system. Unfortunately, some subs only offer auto on / off, resulting in subs turning off during the quiet parts of a movie.
Most of our rooms incorporate a speaker baffle wall at the front of the room and use fabric stretch walls to hide equipment. Unfortunately, commercially available subwoofers just didn't meet our requirements, so we worked with Power Sound Audio to develop an exclusive subwoofer system.
The PRO15v2 / PRO4800 is generation two of this collaboration. It's a unique combination of a US-made two-channel 4800W rack mount power amplifier and four 12” deep ported subwoofer cabinets utilizing Italian-made high output 15” drivers. The ported cabinets are 12" deep and have no cable clearance requirement for stealthy custom installations. In addition, the rack-mount amplifier puts the controls in the rack where they belong, not behind a fabric stretch in the room.
With Acoustic Frontiers, all it takes is 4 simple steps.
We'll take the time to understand your unique needs and goals to customize our approach to designing the best experience for you.
This is where the magic happens and what really makes Acoustic Frontiers stand out. Every room is different, and we’ll account for all the elements that impact performance in your space to ensure you get the best system for your budget.
We’ll make the installation process as painless as possible and carefully calibrate your system to optimize performance.
You deserve the best, and now you’ve got it. Put on your favorite movie or album, or create your next track because the system you wanted is yours to enjoy.
“Acoustic Frontiers were very patient and helpful when it came to selecting speakers and equipment for the room. As a vendor for a multitude of companies, I really felt that I was getting objective advice. They helped me select everything from the speakers, AVR, to even the projector and screen! The end result was nothing short of amazing and my family and I couldn’t be more thrilled. Acoustic Frontiers receives my highest recommendation. We can’t thank you all enough!”
“One of Acoustic Frontiers’ strengths was their willingness to work flexibly with us from both a budget and design perspective. Although they are of course well prepared to make equipment suggestions, they are also willing to work with whatever equipment is already in place to create the best system possible. We ended up with a mix of gear, but it all works together seamlessly. Post-installation and calibration, the system looks and sounds phenomenal!”
“Acoustic Frontiers started out with a design review (since the room work had already begun) and after a couple of interactions I was comfortable enough to let them plan/guide the rest of the build, and purchase the AV equipment from them. They took the time to understand our requirements, discuss equipment options and budget considerations, and were able to provide recommendations without any over-selling. The room has turned out beyond our expectations, and it would not have been possible without Acoustic Frontiers’ home theater products & services.”
Nyal Mellor, Founder, Acoustic Frontiers