Subwoofer placement: Near field better?

natty

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I think it is better to locate the subwoofers where they have the best room interaction.
Yep, 100% this.

Other than higher order harmonics, bass waves are long, and what you hear, even when the sub is next to you, has already bounced off a wall (or two) before your ears hear it. So that relationship between sub/boundary/listener is what matters.
 

natty

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Expectation bias, non double blind testing, harmonics, distortion, room modes, confirmation bias, post hoc ergo proctor hoc, and lack of objective measurement are the first things that come to mind.
 

highstream

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Obvious nonsensical reply. After all, as McGowan notes, his company just put a speaker with a low bass section that is just the opposite of near field and he himself put out a book in the past year that includes how to do subwoofer placement that has nothing to do with near field. Plus, as re recounts in the video, he did not know the subs were near field. In fact, he didn't know there were subs at all. Before posting, it pays to put aside your ideological biases and do your homework.
 
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natty

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Okay, I’ll bow out after I note that neither point proves what he claims. That he put out a flawed treatise and doesn’t believe in the non rigorous conclusions in it any longer doesn’t make either stance correct. And that he didn’t know about the sub placment doesn’t mean that was the variable responsible for his impressions. It’s science 101.
 

highstream

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McGowan wasn’t trying to prove anything. The whole thing was a blind surprise. You’re simply reaching to justify your ideological biases. If you aren’t able to say, “I don’t know,” you should bowed out before posting.
 

highstream

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Yep, 100% this.

Other than higher order harmonics, bass waves are long, and what you hear, even when the sub is next to you, has already bounced off a wall (or two) before your ears hear it. So that relationship between sub/boundary/listener is what matters.
You assume that the subs were pointing away from the listening position, so in effect weren't really near field but just close by. While I assume McGowan knows the difference, directionality is not spoken to in the video or the comments.
 

serko70

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Expectation bias, non double blind testing, harmonics, distortion, room modes, confirmation bias, post hoc ergo proctor hoc, and lack of objective measurement are the first things that come to mind.
I have tried placing the sub right behind my head at ear height in the past (it's not possible to do in my current set up) and I fully agree with McGowan's claim. I came up with this idea while trying to simulate my room with REW. You get the smoothest bass response when you raise the sub to ear height. Feel free to try for yourself in REW room simulator.
 

JStewart

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I think it is better to locate the subwoofers where they have the best room interaction.
:T

Expectation bias, non double blind testing, harmonics, distortion, room modes, confirmation bias, post hoc ergo proctor hoc, and lack of objective measurement are the first things that come to mind.
:T

Add to that, at the end of the video he said the subs were playing 30Hz and below. So no localization there. Still, it may not be the best spot, as you say.

You get the smoothest bass response when you raise the sub to ear height. Feel free to try for yourself in REW room simulator.
Subwoofers, their science and placement, are a solved problem insofar as a smooth response is concerned. The answer will be always be that its most likley that properly set up multiple subwoofers will provide a smoother response than a singe subwoofer. I don't believe there are any placement rules whatsoever that will always result in the smoothest response in, in any room, with any listening position. I think @juicehifi provided the correct answer above.

Here's my room with the simulator as you suggested:

Here's behind my LP at ear height.

51706



Here's front left on the floor:

51707


Front Left at ear height:

51708



At least in my room and my listening position, its not a given that ear height is best vs floor.

Let's also consider what different setups might demand of a subwoofer: In a home theater with surrounds, or heights, that don't play down much below 80Hz the sub will be asked to play play much higher frequencies (a crossover not being a brick wall) and therefore be more easily noticed (localized). I can picture the chances of success with nearfield being lower in this scenario vs playing 30Hz or below with a capable set of mains, as PM said in his video. But, I won't go so far as to say don't try it and see.
 

highstream

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My goal in starting this thread was to inform and to generate thinking and possible experimentation (if the cable length is available). I have no opinion on the matter, never having tried or experienced what Paul encountered (my subs are to the inside of the main speakers, xover around 40 Hz). In this regard, but not all, I consider McGowan to be a reputable and honest witness.
 
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serko70

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:T



:T

Add to that, at the end of the video he said the subs were playing 30Hz and below. So no localization there. Still, it may not be the best spot, as you say.



Subwoofers, their science and placement, are a solved problem insofar as a smooth response is concerned. The answer will be always be that its most likley that properly set up multiple subwoofers will provide a smoother response than a singe subwoofer. I don't believe there are any placement rules whatsoever that will always result in the smoothest response in, in any room, with any listening position. I think @juicehifi provided the correct answer above.

Here's my room with the simulator as you suggested:

Here's behind my LP at ear height.

View attachment 51706


Here's front left on the floor:

View attachment 51707

Front Left at ear height:

View attachment 51708


At least in my room and my listening position, its not a given that ear height is best vs floor.

Let's also consider what different setups might demand of a subwoofer: In a home theater with surrounds, or heights, that don't play down much below 80Hz the sub will be asked to play play much higher frequencies (a crossover not being a brick wall) and therefore be more easily noticed (localized). I can picture the chances of success with nearfield being lower in this scenario vs playing 30Hz or below with a capable set of mains, as PM said in his video. But, I won't go so far as to say don't try it and see.
I don't remember in full detail but there were also L+R speakers and their interactions in my simulation...
 
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