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12-24-2018, 12:37 PM - 1 Like   #1
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Ken Rockwell on Subwoofers

Reassuring to see Ken Rockwell knows as much about audio as he does about photography.
https://kenrockwell.com/audio/stereo-subwoofers.htm
Most articles I have seen written by professional sound engineers say low bass is still mixed to centre but Ken reckons it has been mixed in stereo since 1982.



12-24-2018, 03:29 PM   #2
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It doesn't really matter, because however the album is mixed is how it comes out. He's kinda right because if you want to hear it correctly you need 2 channels of full range.

And digital is a new thing, it's released in digital format but not recorded in digital format. It costs more money to record on tape, and yes some bands prefer tape.

There are plenty of documentaries on the subject.

I personally prefer full range speakers... subs are for bass, and I don't listen to music with 808 bass.

But hey whats your take?
12-24-2018, 03:33 PM - 1 Like   #3
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Ken Rockwell is into submissive furries?
12-24-2018, 07:05 PM - 2 Likes   #4
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Ken Rockwell is a proponent of turning up the saturation to 11. (Sorry Spinal Tap).

Just scroll down to his image of Yosemite, for further punishment look through his Yosemite/latest gallery. The colors are so fake they make your eyes bleed.

I would not trust him as far as I can spit - and I mostly drool these days.


Last edited by PDL; 12-24-2018 at 11:30 PM. Reason: added the r in your
12-24-2018, 07:41 PM - 1 Like   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by boriscleto Quote
Ken Rockwell is into submissive furries?
Lol, didn't see that one coming.

12-24-2018, 08:16 PM - 1 Like   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by PDL Quote
Ken Rockwell is a proponent of turning up the saturation to 11. (Sorry Spinal Tap).

Just scroll down to his image of Yosemite, for further punishment look through his Yosemite/latest gallery. The colors are so fake they make you eyes bleed.

I would not trust him as far as I can spit - and I mostly drool these days.
Have you ever thought of photography in the same way as of painting? Those artistic choices could make more sense to you in that mindset, thinking of it as an expressive medium, rather than a documental one. Just look at Van Gogh, for example. There's a lot of speculation about him taking digitalis and it affecting the blue cones in his eyes around the time of his yellow period. The colors of his work are not accurate, and they are quite saturated, and that's precisely what makes him stand out and his work so demanded.
Art is about imagination, or if you're really pessimistic, about lies. Truth is boring. Boring and uncomfortable, that's why we let our imagination fly, be it with Harry Potter, or other fictional works.

Last edited by Racer X 69; 12-25-2018 at 01:32 PM.
12-24-2018, 09:41 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by torashi Quote
Have you ever thought of photography in the same way as of painting? Those artistic choices could make more sense to you in that mindset, thinking of it as an expressive medium, rather than a documental one. Just look at Van Gogh, for example. There's a lot of speculation about him taking digitalis and it affecting the blue cones in his eyes around the time of his yellow period. The colors of his work are not accurate, and they are quite saturated, and that's precisely what makes him stand out and his work so demanded.
Art is about imagination, or if you're really pessimistic, about lies. Truth is boring. Boring and uncomfortable, that's why we let our imagination fly, be it with Harry Potter, or other fictional works.

Like The Gone With The Wind.

Last edited by Racer X 69; 12-25-2018 at 01:44 PM.
12-24-2018, 10:18 PM - 3 Likes   #8
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Ah, Truth. We used to have a newspaper here called The Truth. It was anything but, although it had its adherents. The Soviet Union had theirs too (Pravda). We had an engineering lecturer who said that Truth was one or more facts overlaid with a series of biases and interpretations. He also said that a fact was something so small it could crawl between an ant’s gonads.

Back to Ken Rockwell’s dodgy assertion. Anyone with a smidgen of acoustic theory knows that (low) bass audio is omnidirectional, so attempting to set it into a sound stage with stereo is at best fraught and at worst an exercise in self-pleasuring.

12-24-2018, 10:22 PM - 1 Like   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by AsahiGlass Quote
It doesn't really matter, because however the album is mixed is how it comes out. He's kinda right because if you want to hear it correctly you need 2 channels of full range.

And digital is a new thing, it's released in digital format but not recorded in digital format. It costs more money to record on tape, and yes some bands prefer tape.

There are plenty of documentaries on the subject.

I personally prefer full range speakers... subs are for bass, and I don't listen to music with 808 bass.

But hey whats your take?
Low frequency is non directional so if it is mixed at different levels, L/R that is just a choice made by engineers in studio using cheap monitors that probably don't respond below 80Hz. (ASt least that is how it used to Be. little Tandy/Radio Shack Shelf monitors for the mix,) since most folks did not have high end stereos. No matter to which side it is mixed, if you have a sub with a cut out, the sub will produce the majority of the bass heard in any recording.
12-24-2018, 11:27 PM - 2 Likes   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by torashi Quote
Have you ever thought of photography in the same way as of painting? Those artistic choices could make more sense to you in that mindset, thinking of it as an expressive medium, rather than a documental one. Just look at Van Gogh, for example. There's a lot of speculation about him taking digitalis and it affecting the blue cones in his eyes around the time of his yellow period. The colors of his work are not accurate, and they are quite saturated, and that's precisely what makes him stand out and his work so demanded.
Art is about imagination, or if you're really pessimistic, about lies. Truth is boring. Boring and uncomfortable, that's why we let our imagination fly, be it with Harry Potter, or other fiction.
There are fundamental differences between painting and just pushing contrast and saturation beyond the pale.

During Van Gogh's lifetime his work was not in demand even though during the last few years of his life he was recognized by the Avant-garde. His paintings came in demand after death and the death of his brother with his brothers widow working hard to promote his work. He was a artistic genius and I have had the privilege of seeing a wall of Van Goth's in Munich. Even Van Gogh did not make your eyes bleed like Ken Rockwell's images.

KR's images are not Art, just read his descriptions about camera performance and "technique". He supposedly all about color fidelity, resolution, speed (focus and frame rate), menu simplicity and lens choice. Add into this he absolutely hates Pentax. His reviews are reviled by large numbers of people while some people emulate him.

I will not go into your comments contained in the last sentence as that boarders on prohibited speech on this forum. I will say however, that I was in the Christchurch College great hall in Oxford this past summer (used in the Potter film's) and it is spectacular with or without cranking the saturation to 11. Over compensating for a lack of common sense does not make "Art".

Last edited by Ash; 12-25-2018 at 06:32 PM.
12-25-2018, 01:56 AM - 4 Likes   #11
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I use a single Yamaha NS-SW300 subwoofer with my Linn Kans, but things like timpani and double basses still sound like they're in a defined place in the soundstage because they are mostly reproduced by the stereo pair. The sub only fills in that bottom octave that is omnidirectional anyway. And since I listen mostly to vinyl, I know that the bass will be mainly mono in the recording because of the simple limitations of what can be cut into the groove.

As for Ken Rockfish's notions about audio: I remember him heaping praise on the old Technics third-octave graphic equaliser somewhere on his site, so that pretty much says it all. And although I personally find his photos horribly oversaturated, if he's able to "support his growing family" with them then all the best to him.
12-25-2018, 06:40 AM   #12
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I was recently looking at small subwoofers for my living room and bedroom stereo systems.

Many models use a driver with dual voice coils and separate left and right channel inputs.
Since low frequencies are non-directional this allows a single sub to reproduce all low bass.

Chris
12-25-2018, 07:43 AM - 3 Likes   #13
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I don’t care what this thread is about. I’d just like to comment that the title of this thread is the best ever.
12-25-2018, 07:47 AM - 1 Like   #14
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One reason for the rise of single sub-woofers (besides only having one speaker) is that it was cheaper to build separate amps for high and low frequencies. The bass amp is generally the cheapest design that will give the needed power, while the high amps don't need massive filtering and wattage. Nowadays, with the advent of class-h and other cheap quality amplifiers, this isn't so important anymore.


Ken is pretty knowledgeable about audio, what he says makes sense to me for the ultimate in realistic sound reproduction but his advice is over-kill for most listeners, especially with modern pop music.
12-25-2018, 08:23 AM   #15
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He was just pimping for sites that sell expensive gear, just like his photo reviews.
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