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Old 2nd September 2005, 04:45 PM   #1
neutral is offline neutral  India
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Default Help for learning subwoofer design

Hi Folks,

I am keen on learning the basic principles of subwoofer design. My ultimate objective is to build myself a subwoofer with one or two 10" drivers that can reach down to 27 Hz at -3 dB in a vented box.

I currently have bookshelf speakers fed by a power amp that I use for music. I want to build a clean passive sub that will complement them and give me the lowest two octaves (20 Hz to 80 Hz). Since my knowledge level on DIY is poor, I will be grateful if experienced builders can point me to links where I can learn the basics of sub design and execution. If anyone has simple plans for building the sub I mentioned, please post the links. Remember I need the sub for music. Home theatre is an afterthought.


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Old 2nd September 2005, 04:49 PM   #2
Did it Himself
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Old 2nd September 2005, 04:56 PM   #3
morbo is offline morbo  Canada
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Use the spreadsheets available from to design a simple sealed box for your 2 10" woofers. Peerless XLS are a good choice for this, and are widely available. Then build the box out of 3/4"-1.5" thick baltic birch ply or MDF, extensively braced. Then you should be all set!
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Old 2nd September 2005, 10:45 PM   #4
Collo is offline Collo  Australia
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Another approach is to download the free WinISD software to do your designs. Get it from:

they also run a well supported forum to assist with any issues you have in using the software
Ports rule!
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Old 3rd September 2005, 11:09 AM   #5
neutral is offline neutral  India
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Thanks Will check the site. A silly question for the experts. Are the sub design principles the same for a music sub as for a movie sub?
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Old 3rd September 2005, 11:28 AM   #6
rcw is offline rcw  Australia
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Default subs

Films have sound effects which for the most part do not exist in the real world, i.e. Dinosaurs footsteps photonic cannons etc.
From this if a subwoofer has enough output at frequencies below 30Hz. or so, it will give an effect that is adequate. A music subwoofer on the other hand is designed to reproduce music that actually exists in the real world should have fidelity to the original sound, the tympany and bass viole section of a symphony orchestra should sound like the real one that you can hear at a live concert for instance.
The later is harder to do than the former, the ultimate challenge being to produce a subwoofer that is capable of reproducing the actual sound of a depth charge, and that of a single bass viole with equal facility.
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