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  1. #1
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    Default SDA Bass Response

    A buddy and I were talking about passive radiators, and I mentioned to him that Polk had very successfully used them in their SDA line to lower the frequency output of those 6.5" woofers. Not exactly remembering the specs, I looked up the SRS 2 and Polk claims it goes down to 14Hz! With four 6.5" woofers and a 15" passive radiator, those numbers seem very optimistic, and not an actual 14hz +/- 3db. Is that true? I know the low frequency output is very good due to the design, but just how low does that speaker, or any of the larger SRS line actually go?

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    I have the SRS 2, speakers, and the only time I use a sub is for the LFE channel when watching movies on bluray disks. For music the SRS II with that 15' woofer does a fine job! I can't say if they actually do perform to the specs you quoted, but they have plenty of the lower frequency oomph.
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    Srs 2, a solid 30 is more realistic

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    Here is a quote I found on the Polk site, " The use of 8 small active drivers coupled to the large 15" sub-bass radiator results in extraordinarily tight, quick and three dimensional mid and upper bass combined with low and sub-bass capabilities which are staggering (clean output at 25 Hz exceeds 100db!) An elaborate bracing system is employed resulting in a remarkably rigid cabinet which virtually eliminates colorations due to panel resonances."

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    The SDA 1C in room response is 20-18,000 +/- 4dB

    http://www.polksda.com/sda1creview.shtml

    http://www.polksda.com/srsreview.shtml

    If you read the 2 articles it's not just about who can hit the lowest freq response. It's about linearity and low distortion.

    H9
    "Appreciation of audio is a completely subjective human experience. Measurements can provide a measure of insight, but are no substitute for human judgment. Why are we looking to reduce a subjective experience to objective criteria anyway? The subtleties of music and audio reproduction are for those who appreciate it. Differentiation by numbers is for those who do not".--Nelson Pass

    Pass Aleph 30; Eastern Electric Mini Max; Adcom GDA600; MIT S3/Z Pc; SDA 1C; Squeezebox; Tubes add soul!

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    Here are the specs on the Polk website for the SDA SRS 2.3TL:

    Total Frequency Response 12Hz-26kHz
    Upper -3dB Limit 25 kHz
    Lower -3dB Limit 30 Hz


    I wonder too what they produce at 12Hz. All I know is that they sound wonderful.

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    They are a successful study in what a passive radiator can do, and they best the low frequencies of a lot of speakers who use active woofers or ported designs. Even the Definitive Technology super towers with active 15" subwoofer claim frequency responce similar to the SDAs, but I doubt it actually comes close. Maybe only a true transmission line can produce deeper and cleaner bass?

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    I very much like the radiator "sound" as it's been called. As far as actual specs of the lower frequencies I suppose Polk could have exaggerated, who knows for sure? The only time I don't like the radiator is for music with extreme bass drum rolls, think Mike Portnoy here, they just can't keep up with the actual speed he is playing..., IMO of course...

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    If they aren't keeping up it's the amp, not the speakers.
    'Political Correctness'.........defined

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    Quote Originally Posted by Conradicles View Post
    Here are the specs on the Polk website for the SDA SRS 2.3TL:

    Total Frequency Response 12Hz-26kHz
    Upper -3dB Limit 25 kHz
    Lower -3dB Limit 30 Hz


    I wonder too what they produce at 12Hz. All I know is that they sound wonderful.
    +1 to that!
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    Quote Originally Posted by F1nut View Post
    If they aren't keeping up it's the amp, not the speakers.
    +1 Or your cabinets are not sealed air tight. If there's leakage, it will interfere with the "Fluid Coupling" between the drivers and Passive Radiator (air being the fluid). That's Polk's whole concept, small, fast woofers, fluid coupled to large, lightweight, and fast Passive Radiators. Just my opinion.
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    Quote Originally Posted by smglbrth View Post
    The only time I don't like the radiator is for music with extreme bass drum rolls, think Mike Portnoy here, they just can't keep up with the actual speed he is playing..., IMO of course...
    This is not true. You likely have a problem with your speakers(leakage, old crossovers etc.) or your amp is not capable of supplying the power the speakers are asking for, think transient response.

    My 1.2TL's combined with my mono blocks can keep up with any drum attack you can think of, and do so with amazing accuracy.
    HT Setup... Pioneer Elite SC-37, Polk Audio SDA-SRS 1.2TL's , Oppo BDP 93
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    Quote Originally Posted by westmassguy View Post
    Or your cabinets are not sealed air tight. If there's leakage, it will interfere with the "Fluid Coupling" between the drivers and Passive Radiator (air being the fluid). That's Polk's whole concept, small, fast woofers, fluid coupled to large, lightweight, and fast Passive Radiators. Just my opinion.
    Excellent point.
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    Quote Originally Posted by smglbrth View Post
    I very much like the radiator "sound" as it's been called. As far as actual specs of the lower frequencies I suppose Polk could have exaggerated, who knows for sure? The only time I don't like the radiator is for music with extreme bass drum rolls, think Mike Portnoy here, they just can't keep up with the actual speed he is playing..., IMO of course...
    Did you read the trade mag reviews I posted? No exaggeration there in those actual measured specs by an independent team

    Quote Originally Posted by F1nut View Post
    If they aren't keeping up it's the amp, not the speakers.
    Most likely the case. And or room/placement issues

    What other speakers have you used the exact same electronics on, in the same room and found the SDA's to be "slow" when compared to other speakers side by side?
    "Appreciation of audio is a completely subjective human experience. Measurements can provide a measure of insight, but are no substitute for human judgment. Why are we looking to reduce a subjective experience to objective criteria anyway? The subtleties of music and audio reproduction are for those who appreciate it. Differentiation by numbers is for those who do not".--Nelson Pass

    Pass Aleph 30; Eastern Electric Mini Max; Adcom GDA600; MIT S3/Z Pc; SDA 1C; Squeezebox; Tubes add soul!

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    Or your speakers or listening position is in a null.

    The neat thing about passive radiators, below the radiator's FS, bass roll off is 12db per octave, opposed to a ported speaker's 24db per octave. Making it as easier match to room/boundary gain than a ported speaker. The only other way to achieve this is with a large sealed speaker with a Q/bass alignment of .5.
    "He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you." Friedrich Nietzsche

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    Quote Originally Posted by smglbrth View Post
    I very much like the radiator "sound" as it's been called. As far as actual specs of the lower frequencies I suppose Polk could have exaggerated, who knows for sure? The only time I don't like the radiator is for music with extreme bass drum rolls, think Mike Portnoy here, they just can't keep up with the actual speed he is playing..., IMO of course...
    Mike Portnoy sounds JUST fine over here...

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    Quote Originally Posted by nooshinjohn View Post
    This is not true. You likely have a problem with your speakers(leakage, old crossovers etc.) or your amp is not capable of supplying the power the speakers are asking for, think transient response.

    My 1.2TL's combined with my mono blocks can keep up with any drum attack you can think of, and do so with amazing accuracy.
    +1 , I remember seeing ads for amps that were tested with numerous bass kick drum attacks. The test showed how the amp produced the first strike fine, but progressively deteriorated after that. Those big bass notes suck the life out of the amp, maybe because of the small size of the capacitors or transformer?

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    Same exact set-up, in the same place, with the 8t's swapped in place of the SDA's. Same stuff I've had for years, B&K pre, 200.2 amp, NAD C542 CDP. You guys are probably right, I'm just hearing things that aren't there, or, in this case, are, maybe... I "thought" I heard the same thing with my 7's, even after the crossover mods and break-in, maybe?...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Polkie2009 View Post
    +1 , I remember seeing ads for amps that were tested with numerous bass kick drum attacks. The test showed how the amp produced the first strike fine, but progressively deteriorated after that. Those big bass notes suck the life out of the amp, maybe because of the small size of the capacitors or transformer?
    An amp with large capacitors will tend to be slower than an amp with a lot of small capacitors because the large capacitors take longer to recharge.
    'Political Correctness'.........defined

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    Damn, there are alot, practically too many, variables to audio. Since the B&K's tend to have large capacitors maybe that's the reason? Wow, talk about a science. I think I need several systems for different tastes in music. It's always been a dream of mine anyways. One room for classical, jazz, etc., one for hard hitting rock with lots of volume, one for, well, you get the idea. Maybe for hard hitting music I need to find an amp with lots of smaller capacitors. Anthem comes to mind and so does, shall I dare to say, Emotiva?

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    Quote Originally Posted by F1nut View Post
    An amp with large capacitors will tend to be slower than an amp with a lot of small capacitors because the large capacitors take longer to recharge.
    Excellent point Jesse, this explains a lot on why I see so many newer amps designed with rows of smaller caps. I'm guessing the higher the total__ microfarad(uF) rating , the better?

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    These will set those SDA's on fire.
    I'm using the 1500 with my SDA2's. Lower noise floor, that the 1000. Phenomenal amp IMO.
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    You will get better performance from an amp intended for home use over one meant for commercial venues.
    HT Setup... Pioneer Elite SC-37, Polk Audio SDA-SRS 1.2TL's , Oppo BDP 93
    Two Channel... Carver Statement 450~1 Vacuum Tube Monoblocks, Dodd Mid-line Tube Linestage with Psvane 12Ax7 tubes, Pioneer Pdd 9Mk II SACD Player, Yamaha PX-3 Turntable with Sumiko BPS EvoIII, Polk Audio SDA-SRS 1.2TLs.


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    He's pulling our legs John, at least I hope he is.
    'Political Correctness'.........defined

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    Quote Originally Posted by Face View Post
    Or your speakers or listening position is in a null.
    Good point.... sitting half way between the front and back walls of a room will cancel out some bass frequencies.

    I ended up having to block the sliding door to the deck and passageway between rooms. The room looked awful but I couldn't deal with knowing I was not getting the best sound. I'm so happy I have an understanding girlfriend. I need to make some basstraps.

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