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Post Subwoofer Ponderings: What are you actually USING in your HOME MUSIC ROOM?

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  • Post Subwoofer Ponderings: What are you actually USING in your HOME MUSIC ROOM?

    Two years ago, John (jbird604) started Subwoofer Ponderings which continued for a year became a 32 page discussion on Subwoofers. (I did manage to read all 32 pages again in only 3 hours.) Then, I found related discussions, so this question has been two years in the making. :-)

    Studying those threads, I learned that we have some really smart people here in this forum with vast expertise and a willingness to share. I learned a lot about what I could do and mostly what not to do or why something I wanted to do won't work (physics).

    I don't want to start another 32 page thread on theory. The famous thread above does that well. But I do have a practical question:

    To the people who are currently (or who have) played an organ in their HOME what are you using for your subwoofer and what amplifier are you using to drive it?

    I hope to keep this thread on topic to address the practical question of WHAT ARE YOU ACTUALLY USING TODAY? (e.g. I use a [make/model] subwoofer and I drive it with [make/model] amplifier at XX watts.)

    For this thread, I'm not interested in what is possible, what could work, what should work, what is needed for a church auditorium, etc.

    Simply, what subwoofer are you actually using in your home living/music room today and what do you drive it with?

    Please limit your responses to these two simple criteria:
    1. Must actually have and use the subwoofer/amplifier you indicate (e.g. Make/model)
    2. Must be in the context of a small living/music room in a house
    Last edited by Eric Mack; 03-11-2019, 03:22 PM.
    Eric Mack
    www.ThisOld340.com
    Rodgers 340 S/N 34341
    Los Angeles, CA

  • #2
    I'll go first. For context, my living/music room is 16x16 with a sloped ceiling 15' high at one end. I have a Rodgers 340 Theatre organ and a baby grand piano in the room. This organ's lowest stops are 16' (Clarinet, String, Bourdon, Tibia Clausa and Diaphone).

    For maximum WAF, my subwoofer is located under the baby grand piano in the corner of the room. It's a 1980's vintage BSR subwoofer that I picked up from Goodwill for $20. The BSR DR-SW15 is a down firing sealed 18x18x24 enclosure with a 15in driver. 20 Watts minimum, 150 watts max). I removed the crossover and resistor pack as I am only driving it from the Pedal channel of my 340. powered by a $20 Chinese no-name 100 watt subwoofer amplifier I purchased off eBay.

    This no-budget setup performs surprisingly well, and as a temporary solution it has allowed me to focus on other more important aspects of my organ restoration first while I think ahead to sound reproduction.

    Remember, this thread is about what are you actually USING in hour home -- not what should/could/wish. :-)
    Last edited by Eric Mack; 03-11-2019, 12:21 PM.
    Eric Mack
    www.ThisOld340.com
    Rodgers 340 S/N 34341
    Los Angeles, CA

    Comment


    • Eric Mack
      Eric Mack commented
      Editing a comment
      The SW4 - is that the speaker in a W3 size cabinet but with two 12" and a mid-range? Or is it exclusively subwoofer?

  • #3
    My living room is larger as it is a combined living/family/great room. I have an Allen B20 along with an HC-15 connected to an Allen ADC-4300--the organ has an active crossover for the subwoofer, so the B20 (12 inch woofer) handles the lowest octave and the 2nd lowest octave (16 ft C) is shared with the HC-15. Both have ADC amplifier channels driving them and I am satisified with the performance.

    I also have a Rodgers P32 cabinet for future use with a Rodgers 840, but haven't hooked it up yet. It will be driven with a Rodgers 100 Watt amp. I imagine it will shake the walls if I permit it to do so.

    In the past, I had a Rodger SW4 compact subwoofer driven with a standard Rodgers 100 watt amp--it also performed quite nicely.

    Comment


    • #4
      I don't know if mine qualifies, but I use Allen's B-40 on my Allen organs with the sub-woofer channel. The amplifiers are all regular ADC amplifiers. However, they are not in my living room, as my music room has now become my garage (32'x24'-still under construction), 12' ceiling under attic, and 20' at the peak in the half with cathedral ceiling. Regular speakers are 13' above the floor, and the B-40s are in the corners of the garage under the cathedral ceiling.

      Sorry if this doesn't meet what you're asking about.

      Michael

      P.S. At church, I use a B-20, and would highly recommend that speaker for home as well.
      Way too many organs to list, but I do have 5 Allens:
      • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony) / ADC-8000DKC
      • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
      • 11 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 7 Pianos

      Comment


      • Eric Mack
        Eric Mack commented
        Editing a comment
        Thanks for sharing! And, thanks for including room details. That information will be helpful for me and anyone who follows this thread in the future. As this thread progresses, I plan to make a table to summarize what is shared.

    • #5
      The Rodgers SW4 is a single 15 inch subwoofer in a cabinet of, duh, 4 cubic feet (approx); ported. It and the Allen B20 are the most compact speakers I've met that can work on 32 flute stops. The Allen B20 has a single 12 inch woofer in a ported cabinet.

      Comment


      • Eric Mack
        Eric Mack commented
        Editing a comment
        I could not find anything on the SW4 or W4. Is that the same form factor as the RW3/W3 cabinet? If so, I wonder if I could make a new back panel and lose the tweeter and passive and add a port to create a W4?

    • #6
      Greetings To The Organ World!

      The music room for the big Rodgers 990 is a whopping 13x11, so yes most of the room is taken up by the console. :) My sub channels are combined into a Realistic MPA2500 power amp that feeds the giant cabinet in the corner, as it stands on its end, and fires into said corner. The intrigue is I really do not know what I have. It has no name on it, but there were two of these monsters with the organ at the church. Some folks have said it is a "real" Rodgers sub, and others have said it is actually a Walker Technical cabinet. It does ok until you get into the throaty 16', and the big 32' stops. Then it just makes obnoxious over-driven distortion noises. Even when both cabinets were connected to the organ at church, they did the same thing. It might be more fun to have a sub that could really handle the output from the organ.

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      Until The Next Dimension,
      Admiral Coluch.

      -1929 Wangerin Pipe Organ Historian
      -Owner 1982 Rogers Specification 990

      Comment


      • #7
        The SW4 is entirely different from the W3/RW3. Here is an archive on its introduction from the internet archive: http://rodgersinstruments.com/PDF_Pr...ioPR120105.pdf

        It's a very compact subwoofer that gets down to 16 Hz. You can't convert another Rodgers speaker into an SW4 unless you have the specific driver used in the SW4. Basically, it is half of an SW7.5.

        Comment


      • #8
        Would love to add some info to this interesting thread, but I don't use a separate subwoofer on my home organ. It's located in a 6' x 10' "nook" (originally a little dining room) fully open to the living room, which is 16' x 36' with a 9' ceiling. The bass requirements are modest, as the organ has no 32' stops, though the 16' Bourdon needs a lot of fundamental.

        The only "subwoofer" in play is the 15" stock Eminence textile-surround woofer in the Allen self-contained speaker system. The organ is a modified Renaissance R-230. Originally two channels, I altered the setup to put the swell into two external channels which have their own amps and speakers. The internal speakers now carry only the great and pedal divisions. There is a proper woofer only on one channel, as is Allen's normal practice. All the 16' pedal stops were intentionally routed into this audio channel.

        The amp that drives this "sub" is just one channel of the ADC amp unit in the console. Bass frequencies are directed into the woofer by a passive crossover in the console.

        I did modify the console a tad to make the woofer more effective. Where the expression and crescendo pedals are located, there is a metal wire cage around them on the inside. I lined that cage with stiff cardboard to make it nearly air-tight. Reducing the acoustic interaction between the front and rear of the woofer cone gave me a bit more solid bottom octave on the 16' pedal stops.
        John
        ----------
        *** Please post your questions about technical service or repair matters ON THE FORUM. Do not send your questions to me or another member by private message. Information shared is for the benefit of the entire organ community, but other folks will not be helped by information we exchange in private messages!

        https://www.facebook.com/pages/Birds...97551893588434

        Comment


        • #9
          Here's an extract from a brochure showing the Rodgers SW4 (along with their other speaker systems).
          Attached Files

          Comment


          • #10
            Thanks, guys, I'm sure this thread will get even more interesting over time as others follow your lead and share their configurations.
            Eric Mack
            www.ThisOld340.com
            Rodgers 340 S/N 34341
            Los Angeles, CA

            Comment


            • #11
              jbird604 wrote: “ the 16' Bourdon needs a lot of fundamental”

              Does anyone know of a website that might have samples of specific stops at specific lengths that are considered good quality? The reason I ask is I am doing my theater Organ restoration pretty much on my own with limited local help. I've learned a lot from the organ groups on this forum and on Facebook. But when I encounter a comment like the one above it makes me realize that I'm not sure I would know a high-quality 16' Bourdon with lots of fundamental from just a loud bass note that rattles the walls.

              What I wish for, and perhaps it exists, is a site where someone has recorded some sounds to be used a reference.
              Eric Mack
              www.ThisOld340.com
              Rodgers 340 S/N 34341
              Los Angeles, CA

              Comment


              • #12
                Originally posted by jbird604
                wrote: “ the 16' Bourdon needs a lot of fundamental”
                Originally posted by Eric Mack
                Does anyone know of a website that might have samples of specific stops at specific lengths that are considered good quality?
                Eric,

                John was simply making a statement that his 16' Bourdon needs a lot of the fundamental frequency of the tone (vs. the partials of the overtone series). This means he's wanting to reinforce the bottom note of the spectrum of tones that make up the 16' Bourdon. It's not that one Bourdon is better than another, as in theory they should all have the same (or very similar) characteristics.

                I hope that helps clarify his comment.

                Michael

                P.S. If you're looking for recorded examples of stops, try visiting http://www.organstops.org/index.html
                Way too many organs to list, but I do have 5 Allens:
                • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony) / ADC-8000DKC
                • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
                • 11 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 7 Pianos

                Comment


                • Eric Mack
                  Eric Mack commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Thank you Michael, that's a useful site. I like that he has photos of the pipes, a brief explanation, and in many cases one or more sound samples. That's going to prove helpful. Thank you again.

                  Eric

              • #13
                It is very important to note that the bottom few octaves of the 16 foot stops, especially the flutes and diapasons, are significantly affected by the acoustics of the room where the organ is located as well as postition within the room. This can determine how much fundamental is needed in the voice or how we hear that fundamental.

                Comment


                • Eric Mack
                  Eric Mack commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Noted. Thanks.

              • #14
                I suppose I take stuff like this for granted, after being involved in organ installation and service for 40+ years now. But yes, the Bourdon is generally the "heaviest" 16' stop on the organ (not necessarily as "loud" as the Principal 16, but the most heavily fundamental stop). In fact, the name is related to the word "burden" and relates to its gravitas.

                As such, it requires a sturdier bass output than any other stop besides a 32' pedal stop such as a Contre Bourdon, which is possibly the hardest of all organ stops to properly reproduce in a room. But the Bourdon 16' only goes down to about 32 Hz, not too low to be adequately created by most any decent 15" speaker in a decent enclosure, in a living room or small church at least.

                We all know, from previous discussions, that it's the frequencies BELOW 32 Hz that are the challenge. Especially getting all the way down to 16 Hz for the lowest fundamental of a 32' stop. I won't re-hash what was said in the old subwoofer thread, but it certainly takes a monumental effort to build a speaker that can actually do that with relatively flat response and reasonable efficiency.

                In spite of the challenge of finding a speaker up to the task, I would still DIE for a 32' Contre Bourdon on my home organ! (Is it time for another upgrade?)
                John
                ----------
                *** Please post your questions about technical service or repair matters ON THE FORUM. Do not send your questions to me or another member by private message. Information shared is for the benefit of the entire organ community, but other folks will not be helped by information we exchange in private messages!

                https://www.facebook.com/pages/Birds...97551893588434

                Comment


                • #15
                  Originally posted by jbird604 View Post
                  But the Bourdon 16' only goes down to about 32 Hz, not too low to be adequately created by most any decent 15" speaker in a decent enclosure, in a living room or small church at least.
                  Fortunately, I am not trying to reproduce a 32' stop, although I share your desire to do so. :-)

                  I've read many posts on OrganForum that point out the lack of midrange in the Rodgers RW3, with its one 15" active and one 15" passive speaker and a JBL Ring Resonator.

                  I wonder then, if the RW3 (with resonator disabled) would be a better solution than my BSR subwoofer for the pedal channel? It's certainly a much bigger box than my BSR Subwoofer, and I'm only trying to make music in a living room, not a church.

                  What do you think?
                  Eric Mack
                  www.ThisOld340.com
                  Rodgers 340 S/N 34341
                  Los Angeles, CA

                  Comment

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