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Old 02-13-2013   #1
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Default Bass Race 2013

Every once in a while I crunch the numbers to figure out which drivers move the most air for the least money. Here are the current winners for 2013:


#3 : Alpine SWR-1522D
Third place goes to the Alpine SWR-1522D. It displaces more air than anything else in this list - 1.6 liters to be exact. It's also more expensive than our other winners, but would be a great match for a big powerful amp. Here's the details:

volume displacement : 1.6 liters
cost : $199
displacement per dollar : 8.06 milliliters per dollar


#2 : Alpine SWS-15D2
Second place goes to the next 'notch' down from the Type R. The Alpine Type S SWS-15D2. It doesn't move as much air as the type R, but it also costs a lot less. Based on the data from Alpine, I believe that both the Type R and the Type S have a flat BL curve. So both woofers are a good match for high power amps; the Type R a little bit more so.

Here's the details:

volume displacement : 1.17 liters
cost : $129.99
Displacement per dollar : 8.99 milliliters per dollar


#1 : Pyle PPA15
First place goes to the Pyle PPA15. Basically a low tech motor and a big cone, but very very cheap. The Pyle 'only' moves half a liter of air, but can be had for as little as $40 online. With shipping, it works out to about $55. At that rate, it has a small edge over the Alpine Type S.

Some notes on the contest:

1) There may be competing woofers which are more affordable. I crunched the numbers on about 20 candidates. If you have a candidate, post it.
2) Shipping is going to play a huge factor in who wins. For instance, you can get the Pyle from Overstock and have it delivered free; that will upset which driver moves the most air for the least money.
3) Get these deals while you can. Nearly every woofer that made my 'leaderboard' last time around has been discontinued. (Audio Psychosis • View topic - The Bass Race) Exodus Audio, Mach 5 and TC Sounds owned the charts last time. Two years down the road, the woofers that won are no longer being produced.




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Old 02-13-2013   #2
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

For those of you doing the calculations at home, the formula for volume displacement is (SD * (xmax in mm / 10))/1000

Like this:
800cm^2 * (6mm / 10)/1000 =
0.48 liters

To get your "displacement per dollar", take that formula then put the cost of the woofer as the denominator.

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Old 02-13-2013   #3
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

Obsidian Car Audio

The 18" moves about 2.43 liters for $199, or about $225 shipped. Right now v3 of these are on pre-order for about $200 shipped. That's about $82 per liter. To top it off, they're actually great drivers.
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Old 02-13-2013   #4
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick Bateman View Post
For those of you doing the calculations at home, the formula for volume displacement is (SD * (xmax in mm / 10))/1000

Like this:
800cm^2 * (6mm / 10)/1000 =
0.48 liters

To get your "displacement per dollar", take that formula then put the cost of the woofer as the denominator.
I've been doing a similar exercise, but for 12" drivers which IMO are a bit more applicable for most uses than their 15" brothers. The Alpine SWR-12D2 is the value leader so far.

Unlike what you're doing however, I'm not considering drivers above or below certain price points (this time around, $100 to $200 for 12" subwoofers). After going through a similar but much more involved exercise a few years ago, the results were basically telling me that, below a particular price point too many compromises were being made to keep the cost of the driver low, and above a certain price point, the increase in performance was IMO not worth the cost.

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Old 02-13-2013   #5
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Steele View Post
I've been doing a similar exercise, but for 12" drivers which IMO are a bit more applicable for most uses than their 15" brothers. The Alpine SWR-12D2 is the value leader so far.
There's the top 5 at the moment:

Rank Brand Model (Price)
1 Alpine SWR-12D2 ($149.95)
2 Dayton DVC310-88 ($124.85)
3 Dayton UM12-22 ($179.00)
4 Infinity 120.9W ($199.95)
5 Dayton RSS315HO-4 ($149.38)

The DVC310-88 has actually been around for quite awhile (it's basically a clone of the old Adire Audio Shiva).

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Old 02-13-2013   #6
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Steele View Post
There's the top 5 at the moment:

Rank Brand Model (Price)
1 Alpine SWR-12D2 ($149.95)
2 Dayton DVC310-88 ($124.85)
3 Dayton UM12-22 ($179.00)
4 Infinity 120.9W ($199.95)
5 Dayton RSS315HO-4 ($149.38)

The DVC310-88 has actually been around for quite awhile (it's basically a clone of the old Adire Audio Shiva).
It's funny how many of these I have in the garage. (My current arsenal consists of some Dayton DVC12s, Diyma 12s, a couple of TC Sounds 15s, couple of TC Sounds 8s, four of the Alpine Type S and two of the Alpine Type R.)

Dayton's clone of the Adire Audio Tempest nearly wins first place, loses by a hair to the Stereo Integrity 15"

Dayton Audio DVC385-88 15" DVC Series Subwoofer 295-190

Kind of amazing, considering the Tempest has been around for at least a decade.

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Old 02-14-2013   #7
 
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

How about the Creative Sounds SDX-10 as a candidate?

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Old 02-14-2013   #8
 
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

How would a $70 Adire Brahma 12" do? I paid $30 shipping on a $40 woofer!

Eric

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Old 02-14-2013   #9
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jimmy D. View Post
How about the Creative Sounds SDX-10 as a candidate?

Jimmy D.
It's really hard for the twelves to compete with the 15s and 18s. 15" seems to be the sweet spot. Basically there aren't a lot of 18" and 21" woofers with excursion that exceeds 12mm, and the ones that *do* are kinda 'boutique' items, and carry a large price tag. I wouldn't be surprised if there is a 12" that can compete with the 15" drivers on this list, I just haven't found any yet.

A 'rule of thumb' would go like this:
If you have a 15" woofer and a 12" woofer, and their xmax is the same, if the 15" woofer costs less than 50% more, than the 15" will generate more bass per dollar. For instance, if you're looking at a 15" and a 12" and they both have 12mm of xmax, and the 12" costs $100, as long as the 15" costs $150 or less the fifteen will generate more bass per dollar.


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Old 02-14-2013   #10
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

We are looking for the most air movement for the least money.

subs, are air pumps !

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Old 02-14-2013   #11
 
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nismo View Post
How would a $70 Adire Brahma 12" do? I paid $30 shipping on a $40 woofer!

Eric
I'm at $58.82/liter, or about 17 mL/$1. This is taking the 1 way xmax into account. Should we count the full sweep, I'm at $29.41/liter, or about 34 mL/$1.

Not bad!

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Old 02-14-2013   #12
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nismo View Post
How would a $70 Adire Brahma 12" do? I paid $30 shipping on a $40 woofer!

Eric
Unless that deal is currently available and open to all, it fails the "availability" requirement to be included in this race

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Old 02-14-2013   #13
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick Bateman View Post
Basically there aren't a lot of 18" and 21" woofers with excursion that exceeds 12mm, and the ones that *do* are kinda 'boutique' items, and carry a large price tag.
I think that there's a good reason for that too - you're likely to run out of power (or thermal power-handling capability) before you run out of excursion with those larger drivers, so the longer coils are really not necessary and they will only increase weight and reduce efficiency.

I actually think that 12" rather than 15" is the "sweet spot" for subwoofer drivers for most uses.

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Old 02-14-2013   #14
 
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Steele View Post
Unless that deal is currently available and open to all, it fails the "availability" requirement to be included in this race
I'm handicapped by a 10 year old subwoofer!

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Old 02-16-2013   #15
 
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

I've been looking at this monster SI HT18 for home theater use...but if my math is correct it appears to ranks well here too.

volume displacement : 2.651 liters = Sd(117841 mm^2) x Xmax (22.5mm) / 1000000
cost : $169
Displacement per dollar : 15.7 milliliters per dollar = 2651mL/$169

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Old 02-17-2013   #16
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by ultimatemj View Post
I've been looking at this monster SI HT18 for home theater use...but if my math is correct it appears to ranks well here too.

volume displacement : 2.651 liters = Sd(117841 mm^2) x Xmax (22.5mm) / 1000000
cost : $169
Displacement per dollar : 15.7 milliliters per dollar = 2651mL/$169
That's very similar to the Obsidian driver I posted earlier. SI and Obsidian are very close, Nick being the owner of SI and co-owner of Obsidian.
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

Good to know. WDE

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Old 02-17-2013   #18
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by ultimatemj View Post
Good to know. WDE
War damn! (I'm admittedly not much of a football fan though)
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Old 02-18-2013   #19
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by ultimatemj View Post
I've been looking at this monster SI HT18 for home theater use...but if my math is correct it appears to ranks well here too.

volume displacement : 2.651 liters = Sd(117841 mm^2) x Xmax (22.5mm) / 1000000
cost : $169
Displacement per dollar : 15.7 milliliters per dollar = 2651mL/$169
Some updates...

1) Here's where the leaderboard stands currently, based on some drivers that were sent to me:
  • Stereo Integrity 15" D4, @10.64ml per dollar
  • Dan Wiggins has been extolling the virtues of high displacement low efficiency subs for a decade now; I'm kinda stoked that a 'clone' of his Tempest is #2 on this list, despite being about ten years old! The Dayton DVC 385 delivers 10.53ml per dollar
  • The Pyle PPA15 has dropped to fourth. It's still the cheapest driver on the list. The Alpine isn't in the top 3 anymore, but at #4 it would still be my choice because of it's flat BL curve.

2) Brian has a good point, that it might be useful to restrict the list to two categories. The first would be 'drivers of any size' and the second would be 'drivers up to a certain size.' This would help show the 'goodness' of drivers like the Anarchy, which will put out as much bass as most woofers that are one size larger.

3) I didn't include the SI or Obsidian 18" drivers because both appear to be 'pre-order.' I'd prefer to restrict the list to drivers that are readily available.


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Old 02-18-2013   #20
 
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

What about the FI 18s IB318, they are $254 each?

IB318

SINGLE 2 | SINGLE 4

Fs: 22.3 Hz | 22.5 Hz
Re: 1.5 Ohms/coil | 2.8 Ohms/coil
Qms: 3.33 | 3.41
Qes: ..81 | .77
Qts: .65 | .62
Mms: 272g | 270g
Sd: 1210cm^2 | 1210cm^2
Vas: 381 l | 381 l
Spl: 89.1dB 1W/1m | 89.4dB 1W/1m
Bl: 8.43 N/A | 11.8 N/A
Xmax: 30mm
Rms: 550W @ 20Hz
Sealed box: Infinite Baffle Only
Ported box: N/A
Sub OD: 18.500”
Cut ID: 16.750”
Mounting depth: 9.500”
Displacement: 0.22cuft
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Old 02-18-2013   #21
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

Still don't understand how the Dayton drivers are clones of Adire speakers without using XBL2.
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Old 02-18-2013   #22
 
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

Quote:
Originally Posted by thehatedguy View Post
Still don't understand how the Dayton drivers are clones of Adire speakers without using XBL2.
The original Shiva and Tempest did not have XBL^2 motors.
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Old 02-18-2013   #23
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

Really?

Shows how much I paid attention to Adire back in the day.

Carry on.
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

Ray is right. The Brahma was the first to have it, followed by the Tumult and the Koda 8. The Koda6, Shiva, Tempest, and Maelstrom did not. Only when re-released by Exodus, as the X2 version, did they have the XBL (as it is now called) motor. Dan DID design those, but as originally designed, they did not.

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Old 02-18-2013   #25
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Default Re: Bass Race 2013

Well, learn something new every day...I thought they all had XBL2 on the bigger speakers.
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