View Full Version : SVS vs. HSU Review Hotlink?
05-29-2002, 02:14 PM
I remember seeing a post somewhere in this Polk forum with a hotlink to another HT forum site with an extensive home review of the new HSU VTF-3 vs. an SVS sub (maybe the 20-39CS - can't remember).
I can't seem to find it, and I'd like to take another look at that review - it seemed really well thought out, and also the SVS guys actually posted a response in the forum, which I thought was pretty cheeky.
Any help here guys? I'd really appreciate it. I've narrowed my sub upgrades down to SVS or HSU, and the review will help me make a final decision.
05-29-2002, 05:07 PM
This one? (http://www.hometheaterforum.com/htforum/showthread.php?threadid=65441)
If I get a new job (I'll find out tomorrow) I'll be in the same boat between those two subs. Got my fingers crossed...
05-30-2002, 01:31 PM
That is the review I was looking for.
A few things to keep in mind:
1) The CS series is unpowered (the reviewer used his own amp), which makes the cost seem much lower as compared to the HSU, which has a built-in amp.
2) The 20-39CS uses the SVS "improved standard driver", and the CS series is the lowest cost of the entire SVS line-up. The 20-39CS can be had for less than $500 if I recall correctly.
In comparison, the VTF-3 costs around $900, and is supposed to be the killer HT set-up for the HSU line.
A much more fair comparison would have been the SV 20-39CS+ with the Samson S1000 outboard amp for $1,000. The CS+ series uses a completely different driver that is much better than the still excellent "improved standard driver" of the baseline CS series.
Of course, if the sky is the limit, the CS Ultra series uses an even better driver than the CS+ - the equivalent of a nuclear reactor under the hood with a 3" VC, 6 pound magnet, and 2" peak to peak excursion. The CS Ultra and the Samson amp can be had for $1,400. But I digress.....
Even though the review was extremely favorable for both the SVS and the HSU, I'd bet money the outcome would have been different had the reviewer been using the 20-39CS+ and the Samson amp. This point was, of course, noted more than once in the string and I am not saying anything new.
This is not to suggest I'm already picking sides - just trying to help you along the learning curve if you were considering the VTF-3 or the 20-39CS - it would be a closer comparison if you demo'd the 20-39CS+/S1000 against the VTF-3.
In fact, that is exactly what I plan on doing (if I can stomach the return shipping costs) before I commit.
Thanks, again - and this SVS vs. HSU string is great if anyone else hasn't checked it out.
05-30-2002, 02:05 PM
Thanks for the info... the amp thing jumped out at me, too. It sounds like a winner either way... but I'm leaning towards the 20-39PCi at this point.
Out of curiosity, what's your room size? Mine is about 24x20, with 2 open doorways. I'm also thinking about 2 vtf-2's, but still leaning towards the SVS. DIY just isn't my bag at this point, sounds like fun down the road, though.
05-30-2002, 06:47 PM
The HSU VTF-3 clearly beat the SVS 20-39CS in the demo, although both were very well regarded.
The 20-39PCi you are considering has the same exact "improved standard driver" as the 20-39CS, and will not perform appreciably better, except for the subsonic filter on the built in amp. I would NOT expect the 20-39PCi to outperform the VTF-3.
There is good news on the horizon, though - if you are set on SVS. SVS will be taking orders for the powered version of the 20-39CS+ (to be known as the 20-39PC+) within a few weeks. Again, this sub will contain a much better driver than the 20-39PCi, and will compete much better with the HSU VTF-3. Expect the price to be similar to the VTF-3 ($850 range).
If you want a powered sub from SVS, I'd strongly recommend waiting until the 20-39PC+ is available. Otherwise, the choice is clear - go with the HSU VTF-3 because it will clearly send the 20-39PCi packing.
Also, I would not look at two VTF-2's when the VTF-3 is available and seems to handily outperform the VTF-2 - it had better for twice the price! Although it must be said the VTF-2 is a phenom sub in its own right (according to all the reviews) and nothing said here is meant to diminish that at all - Juice21 loves his dual VTF-2's. Also, unless you stack them, two subs are harder to tune and get into phase than one.
My HT room is 12x18 with a small foyer and one stairwell going up. There are other doors but they are closed during HT playback for max bass reinforcement.
The reason I am looking at new subs is because I am forced to voluntarily and publicly retract my previous assumptions and statements about DVDs not having much significant bass below 35Hz - that is simply not true. I have seen the graphs on the websites and I have read the reviews - there are several popular DVDs with strong bass extending down to below 20Hz. The PSW350 is a very good sub at its price point (two of them stacked are really quite impressive), but they have (by deliberate design through no fault of their own) very little output below 30Hz. It's time for me to step up and grab that last octave by the balls and experience strong and flat bass to the subsonic range.
I expect to upgrade within two months. Anyone interested in two perfect PSW350's? We can work out the deal off-line by e-mail or phone.
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