Tag Archives: woofer

Asheville, Walnut Cove, Biltmore Forrest and Western North Carolina’s Audio and Home Theater specialists present Cane Creek AV and Paul McGowan – PS Audio, Intl.

I use two subs here, each with two 12″ drivers and my main speakers have a 15″ woofer, so this subwoofer blog by Paul is one I totally agree with. As long as they are of good quality and can be matched properly, subs are a good thing. The more of them, the merrier.

Why are subwoofers attacked?

With all the ranting and raving I do about the importance of subwoofers you’d think we were in the business of selling them. But, we’re not. My passion for certain subjects knows few bounds.

I understand people’s hesitations with them: the added clutter of multiple boxes, PITA to set up, expensive, unnecessary. What I do not understand is when good people who love music and want the same things I do, attack them as if they were the plague.

A good friend of mine who shall remain nameless suggested it might be a male ego thing: fear of inadequacy, but that seems far-fetched.

No, I think it stems from misinformation about why we would add a subwoofer to an otherwise full range system. If not to extend the range of musical notes, then what?

Realism. Our brains are wired to notice subtle cues rarely paid attention to like footfalls on a wooden floor, the rumble of traffic, the subway train under Carnegie Hall, pulsing of an air conditioning system, the thumping and bumping of physical objects in a room—things you may have no conscious interest in hearing or may even wish to ignore as distracting clutter, but important none the less.

My goal with building high-performance audio systems is to bring a sense of realism into our homes, a challenge engineers have been struggling with for years. Remember Smell-O-vision? Perhaps that’s taking things a bit in the direction of the absurd, but for me, one of the easiest and best means of adding that touch of realism to your home music system is the addition of a pair of subwoofers.

Asheville, Walnut Cove, Biltmore Forrest and Western North Carolina’s Audio and Home Theater specialists present Cane Creek AV and Paul McGowan – PS Audio, Intl.

More from Paul on loudspeakers.

Mission improbable

Yesterday I mentioned the reason all loudspeakers are colored and veiled. They have mass to move.

We don’t know how to move mass without affect—no matter how thin or light it is.

There have been several attempts at building massless speakers, like the Hill Plamatronics, though it included a conventional, heavy mass woofer.

One of my readers reminded me of our friend, Nelson Pass (Threshold and Pass Labs), and his attempt at a full range massless loudspeaker. Check out Nelson in a suit!

I don’t know the history of this. But it certainly never made it to store shelves and, even if it had, anything generating sound with ions also makes ozone, a gas not good to breathe in excess.

Which begs the question, if there was a massless speaker would it be without veils and added color? The answer would be no. The air itself has mass, and whatever means used to move that mass will impart a sonic thumbprint.

Colorations are part of the listening experience.

The trick is to find the ones most pleasing to you.