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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
As the title says. Lets use CT Sounds subs as a an example. Would you be better served running 3.2k watts into one Exo 12, rated at 3k/6k, 2k watts to two meso 8’s at 800 / 1600, or say 1500 watts into two tropo 18”s at 650 rms/1300max? For volume and sound quality, are we better served by less watts and more cone or visa versa?
Mark
 

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Its called displacement. Whatever sub will move the most air. It wins. As far as loudness. Aka spl goes.
You could have an 8 inch sub with 50mm of throw and a 12 inch sub with 15.
Same thing.
I do not know if that math checks out. Just saying I threw some numbers out there.
Either way small sub lot of movement or big sub with a mediocre amount of movement.
The bigger sub will almost sound better. All other things being equal simply because it moves less. So it will naturally have less distortion. Again....all other things being equal.
 

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This question is kind of impossible to answer the way you've asked it. There are just too many variables trying to compare a single 12 to dual 8s to dual 18s, all from different product lines and all with drastically different power.

Thomasluke7899 touched on this, but there are a few basics you need to understand when trying to compare equipment.

1. A speaker acts as a piston. Sound is a result of that piston moving air. Move more air, get more output and low end frequency extension (generally - there are a lot of other variables to this)
2. There are two rules of thumb when trying to compare output potential. If all things are equal (speaker size/model, enclosure size and type, etc.), then doubling the power will create a 3 DB increase in output. If everything remains the same, but you double the cone area, that will also give you a 3db increase in output.
3. The above concept is only accurate in a vacuum. In the real world, any change you make to the setup will affect other parts of the setup. For example, if you double the cone area by adding an extra sub, you also have to adjust your enclosure size to give each driver the necessary airspace. Increasing the size of the enclosure decreases the volume of your car interior which in turn can create a shift in resonant frequency and cabin gain.

As a general recommendation, you should go with the largest sub you can fit/afford from a given product line. To use one of your examples, a CT Sounds Tropo 12 and Tropo 18 both have the same power handling at 650W RMS. The 18 has more than twice the cone area of the 12, and also has an extra 2 mm of one-way excursion. Compared with 2 12s, the 18 would give you more output on half the power at less expense. BUT, the 12 requires much less airspace. Based on the manufacturer recommendations, you could fit 3 12s in less space than a single 18. That would give you more output in the same footprint. 3 subs is going to cost significantly more. The drivers themselves will cost more. You will need 3 times the power, which costs more. You will need a stronger electrical system, which will cost more to upgrade (thicker wire, more fusing/distribution accessories, big 3 upgrade, possibly an extra battery or upgraded alternator).

It all comes down to trade-offs. What is your budget, how much space are you willing to sacrifice, what are your goals for the system, etc? No one product can check all the boxes for everyone.

Lithium also offers a good suggestion to download WinISD and use it to model the different drivers you're considering. It won't be 100% accurate, but it can give you a good idea of how different drivers compare, what kind of output and frequency response you can expect for a given driver, enclosure, cabin size, and power level. Takes some getting used to, but there are videos out there that can walk you through how to model different things.
 

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This question is kind of impossible to answer the way you've asked it. There are just too many variables trying to compare a single 12 to dual 8s to dual 18s, all from different product lines and all with drastically different power.

Thomasluke7899 touched on this, but there are a few basics you need to understand when trying to compare equipment.

1. A speaker acts as a piston. Sound is a result of that piston moving air. Move more air, get more output and low end frequency extension (generally - there are a lot of other variables to this)
2. There are two rules of thumb when trying to compare output potential. If all things are equal (speaker size/model, enclosure size and type, etc.), then doubling the power will create a 3 DB increase in output. If everything remains the same, but you double the cone area, that will also give you a 3db increase in output.
3. The above concept is only accurate in a vacuum. In the real world, any change you make to the setup will affect other parts of the setup. For example, if you double the cone area by adding an extra sub, you also have to adjust your enclosure size to give each driver the necessary airspace. Increasing the size of the enclosure decreases the volume of your car interior which in turn can create a shift in resonant frequency and cabin gain.

As a general recommendation, you should go with the largest sub you can fit/afford from a given product line. To use one of your examples, a CT Sounds Tropo 12 and Tropo 18 both have the same power handling at 650W RMS. The 18 has more than twice the cone area of the 12, and also has an extra 2 mm of one-way excursion. Compared with 2 12s, the 18 would give you more output on half the power at less expense. BUT, the 12 requires much less airspace. Based on the manufacturer recommendations, you could fit 3 12s in less space than a single 18. That would give you more output in the same footprint. 3 subs is going to cost significantly more. The drivers themselves will cost more. You will need 3 times the power, which costs more. You will need a stronger electrical system, which will cost more to upgrade (thicker wire, more fusing/distribution accessories, big 3 upgrade, possibly an extra battery or upgraded alternator).

It all comes down to trade-offs. What is your budget, how much space are you willing to sacrifice, what are your goals for the system, etc? No one product can check all the boxes for everyone.

Lithium also offers a good suggestion to download WinISD and use it to model the different drivers you're considering. It won't be 100% accurate, but it can give you a good idea of how different drivers compare, what kind of output and frequency response you can expect for a given driver, enclosure, cabin size, and power level. Takes some getting used to, but there are videos out there that can walk you through how to model different things.
Its literally just displacement. Like only displacement.
We can compare different amounts of displacement. An 8inch vs a 12inch.
But thats only size. Now let's talk about air volume.
When we're talking about moving air we're talking in three dimensions - it is a volume of air we are moving, not simply a flat sheet of air. When we talk about cone area we only have two dimensions so we need another parameter to get a volume of air. That parameter is clean cone excursion, often called Xmax. There are three ways that Xmax is determined - two methods are arithmetic and based on measuring the actual dimensions of the voice coil and the magnetic gap and one is based on measuring the maximum cone excursion in usage where THD reaches 10%. The latter method is the most accurate whilst the simple arithmetic method is overly conservative for most drivers and the more complex arithmetic method is slightly over-optimistic. To get an truly accurate comparison you should check that Xmax has been determined the same way for all cabs - but either the measurement or complex arithmetic method will give you sufficiently similar figures to be of real value.
That you can then compare. Apples to apples.
 

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As the title says. Lets use CT Sounds subs as a an example. Would you be better served running 3.2k watts into one Exo 12, rated at 3k/6k, 2k watts to two meso 8’s at 800 / 1600, or say 1500 watts into two tropo 18”s at 650 rms/1300max? For volume and sound quality, are we better served by less watts and more cone or visa versa?
Mark
So your goal is to get loud SQish bass, right?. Also know as "SQL". Is that your only goal? How's your front stage? Will it accommodate the amount of bass that you will have? Cuz if it doesn't then it realy not consider SQL. Are you looking for recommendations for subs? Or do you just want to know what type of set up gets the best SQL bass?

Every one here has different subs and different ways to get bass. So you are going to get recommendations out the wazoo. You can achieve that same goal in different ways and they all have their trade offs. Whether it's 4-8", 3-10", 2-12", or 1-18" or either ported, sealed, or IB. Big power, little power, space consuming, space saving, it can all be achieved with every set up if done right.

Most ppl don't know what they want until they hear it by experimenting. I thought I just wanted SPL, got me a skar in a pre-fab ported box and replaced my stock speakers. I just wanted loud bass. And after I got that I realized it sounded like ass.

You have not given us enough info for you to get a proper answer and your going to get a bunch of random responses. Then eventually every one is going to be arguing and you'll end up just backing out of the conversation all together lol

Welcome to the madhouse buddy
 

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This is a cone are chart, it's not accounting for many things but at base level it's giving you an idea of the differences between multiple smaller drivers vs larger and so on.

I'll yield to the technical guys about the factors not considered here but it's somewhere to start.
 

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Per Hintzyboy:

"Lithium also offers a good suggestion to download WinISD and use it to model the different drivers you're considering. It won't be 100% accurate, but it can give you a good idea of how different drivers compare, what kind of output and frequency response you can expect for a given driver, enclosure, cabin size, and power level. Takes some getting used to, but there are videos out there that can walk you through how to model different things."

It's speaker modeling software.
 
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hey all, thanks for the responses. I’m not looking for system referrals, I’m just asking questions, trying to learn. I’ve recently bought what I can and am installing as I have time. I can tell you what I got and you can opine, but I have it all, so theres no real recommendations needed. Lol. Like I said, I’m just learning, and I appreciate all the responses.
 

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Hey all, thanks for the responses. I’m not looking for system referrals, I’m just asking questions, trying to learn. I’ve recently bought what I can and am installing as I have time. I can tell you what I got and you can opine, but I have it all, so theres no real recommendations needed. Lol. Like I said, I’m just learning, and I appreciate all the responses.
In that case. Cone area is king. Just my useless .02
 
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General rules of thumb:

3dB = slight change in volume
6dB = significant change in volume
10dB = twice or half as loud

+3dB requires 2X power
+6dB requires 4X power
+10dB requires 10X power

+3dB from doubling cone area or doubling power
+6dB from doubling cone area and doubling power

The number of people who get hung up on power here is comical.

"I went from a 1000W amp to 1500W and it sounds a million times better!"

A realistic practical example:

You have an amplifier that outputs 500W RMS at 4ohms and 1000W RMS at 2ohms.

You have a single 4ohm 12" sub taking all 500W. You add a second of the same subs and wire them in parallel (2ohm final load). Now you've got two 12" drivers with 1000W between them. This will net you +6dB.
 

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The number of people who get hung up on power here is comical.

"I went from a 1000W amp to 1500W and it sounds a million times better!"
I'm guilty of it (I've never said what you used as an example but...). Not going to lie. Glad i've learned better.
 

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yep the logarithmic effect of dealing with sound, at a given SPL level as long as anyone amp isn't clipping between a 500w 1000w and 1500w amp you'll just be using a different duty cycle on them. Also remember that these air pumps work twice as hard every time you halve the frequency, so you need twice the excursion at 20hz that you do at 40hz, as the piston is only doing half the stroke speed it needs to stroke twice as far to move the same amount of air. Hence your tweeter might be only 1" square in area, but it's pumping up to 20,000 times a second where your sub pumps 20 times a second, two extremes I know.

Where power does come in when you start looking at the triangle of output at a given frequency vs box size vs power, you get to pick two. If you want a small enclosure where you're going deep and loud then you need to compress that sealed (or pseudo sealed ported enclosures that act differently at frequencies) and that takes power. Conversely you look at some of these mega true infinite baffle setups like Peter and PS Sound where he's running dual 18s, he's able to go loud and deep with modest power as the whole world is his back box.

Ok some gross oversimplifications here, and there is a lot more nuance along the way. However it effectively comes to this, what is the SPL level you feel you want and need and at what level of low end extension. Say that's 110db at 20Hz you need to figure out what sub, or combination of subs work for the space you have and ow efficient they are will dictate your power requirement. I personally would look at a 800 / 400 / 200 / 100 setup for sub / bass / mid / tweet and I don't think you'd go far wrong
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
In that case. Cone area is king. Just my useless .02
Thanks. My current setup, 1000w to Two Meso 6.5s.
I’d suggest rewording your question to make a little more sense…

I have X, Y, Z equipment, which combo will get louder or sound better or…
Thank you appreciate it comment. Let’s take this scenario then, I am running 1000 W at one ohm mono powering to Meso 6.5 subs. To upgrade From this using the same amp, would running a single high end 12 @ 1k , two middle of the road 12s at 500 each, or four budget 12s at 250 each Create the most improvement?
Seriously thank you everyone I love these discussions.
 
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