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HSU VTF-15H Audioholics Indepth Review


Active Member

That website also has reviews from the same reviewer of the SVS PB12-Plus ($1448 shipped) and Rythmik FV15HP ($1339 shipped) subs as comparisons. The HSU as you know is $1018 shipped.

From what I can tell, the other two subs do perform a bit better, but they also cost more too. I think that this review should help curb the enthusiasm/hype of the HSU just a bit as regards it's comparisons to an SVS Ultra (and this is coming from someone that owns and loves the HSU). But I still agree it offers the most bang-for-buck.

That said, I was disappointed that the review did not include max output measurements for the 1 or 2 port tunings, only both ports open. I run my sub with 1 port plugged.
"Limited output below 25Hz"??? Gee, that's kind of what makes a subwoofer a subwoofer, isn't it?
Zing said:
"Limited output below 25Hz"??? Gee, that's kind of what makes a subwoofer a subwoofer, isn't it?

That's mentioned on the cons because they only tested it with both ports open. Regarding the port tuning they say this:

"Unfortunately we had time to only measure and listen to one mode (all ports open). As seen in the curves provided by the manufacturer, the one port open mode should provide true below 20 Hz extension (at reasonable SPL levels), an overdamped response (gentle downward sloping response), with stronger output at 16 and 20 Hz, but slightly less output in the 25 - 32 Hz range (port output actually cancels woofer output at 16 and 20 Hz in the two ports open position)."

The both ports open CEA-2010 values are (this is why the reviewer makes the limited below 25hz comment):

Frequency Maximum Peak SPL @ 1 Meter
20 Hz 109.9 dB
25 Hz 115.8 dB
32 Hz 119.0 dB
40 Hz 121.7 dB
50 Hz 121.7 dB
63 Hz 121.6 dB

...Especially considering the results of the PB12-Plus (also in all ports open mode):

Frequency Maximum Peak SPL @ 1 Meter
20 Hz 114.4 dB
25 Hz 117.0 dB
32 Hz 119.0 dB
40 Hz 121.4 dB
50 Hz 122.8 dB
63 Hz 122.8 dB

At most we are talking 4.5dB max output different at 20hz, with all other values being within about 1dB. So the "limited below 25hz" comment is relative. Again remember either sub can be tuned lower. And the HSU has additional setting (Q and EQ) that affect how deep and loud it goes. I wish the reviewer had more time to provide the max output of both subs in the multiple configurations.

Here is the Rythmik as well (while higher overall, has a 10% output drop at 20hz compared to 40, which is the same drop as the HSU product percentage wise - would you also say that the Rythmik is limited below 25Hz?). Again I think that statement about the HSU is relative.

Frequency Maximum Peak SPL @ 1 Meter
20 Hz 113.5 dB
25 Hz 119.0 dB
32 Hz 123.8 dB
40 Hz 126.0 dB
50 Hz 125.9 dB
63 Hz 125.7 dB

Lastly I think all these subs perform well compared to another batch of CEA-2010 measurements done back in 2007:


The 2007 PB13-Ultra all ports open scored:
Frequency Maximum Peak SPL @ 2 Meter
20 Hz 108.5 dB
25 Hz 112.4 dB
32 Hz 115.8 dB
40 Hz 116.9 dB
50 Hz 115.8 dB
63 Hz 114.7 dB

Adjusted the PB13-Ultra to 1 meter would put the results 6dB higher:
Frequency Maximum Peak SPL @ 1 Meter
20 Hz 114.5 dB
25 Hz 118.4 dB
32 Hz 121.8 dB
40 Hz 122.9 dB
50 Hz 121.8 dB
63 Hz 120.7 dB
I have been hesitant to say that it is superior to the PB13, having owned both at separate times. Unfortunately I could not do a head to head comparison since by the time the I purchased the HSU, my ultra was LONG gone. I admit to making a guess that it could be superior to the cylinder version of the Ultra based on a somewhat educated guess. Interesting info regardless and hope to read the article/shootout asap. I'll continue to promote this sub based on value depending on ones budget, dollar for dollar it's damn difficult to compete with they way it performs...and two of them, I won't even go there. :D