Open baffle Bass -- what does it sound like?

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zkeller

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Open baffle Bass -- what does it sound like?
« on: 25 Nov 2020, 10:56 am »

Over on the Open Baffle circle I asked: How would you describe OB bass compared to boxed bass?

The reply was: OB bass are very open and large soundstage but with Less Slam.

Does that describe the bass from the Spatial Sapphire M5s?

sockpit

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Re: Open baffle Bass -- what does it sound like?
« Reply #1 on: 25 Nov 2020, 10:26 pm »
In a word, yes. I have had M5s in a bedroom.  I suspect the bass impact depends a lot on room interaction and modes.

I've added bass traps to get more low-end.  Counter-intuitive, but it works.  Plus I'm playing with my old REL T-1 sub to get the pressurization of very low end, crossover set at its minimum, volume at about half gain.

So if you like "slam," M5s may not deliver--directly out of box.  Again, a different room might yield different results.  Clayton is an honest fellow and gives good advice.

FullRangeMan

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Re: Open baffle Bass -- what does it sound like?
« Reply #2 on: 26 Nov 2020, 12:05 pm »
Over on the Open Baffle circle I asked: How would you describe OB bass compared to boxed bass?

The reply was: OB bass are very open and large soundstage but with Less Slam.

Does that describe the bass from the Spatial Sapphire M5s?
I cant speak for Spatials as I didnt hear them but I meant say that the OB woofers dont have the BR resonances that the BR boxes are know to have. Here the Spatials owners will help you.

Audiosaurusrex

Re: Open baffle Bass -- what does it sound like?
« Reply #3 on: 26 Nov 2020, 01:17 pm »
Over on the Open Baffle circle I asked: How would you describe OB bass compared to boxed bass?

The reply was: OB bass are very open and large soundstage but with Less Slam.

Does that describe the bass from the Spatial Sapphire M5s?
I have the M3 Sapphires. I think there are trade offs with the OBs. I had Vandersteen 2ces prior and they were amazing in the bass frequencies but somewhat muted in resolution overall. The M3’s are very transparent and so much more articulate but yes shy in bass slam. Once I added a lot of room treatments diffusion and absorption they improved dramatically. Very  room dependent IMO.

zkeller

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Re: Open baffle Bass -- what does it sound like?
« Reply #4 on: 26 Nov 2020, 01:26 pm »

That is very useful to me.

Because my listening room is also our lounge, I can't really do much with the room (short of divorce proceedings). It has the usual drapes, bookcase and a low TV cabinet behind the speakers on the front wall and I am able to place them just over four foot from the wall. But is that  enough to bring out the bass?

I might also mention that I don't feel that I need a big thumping bass and I don't do heavy rock or similar, but I do like to hear deep bass instruments, and the underpinning bass of an orchestra.

Big Red Machine

Re: Open baffle Bass -- what does it sound like?
« Reply #5 on: 26 Nov 2020, 01:46 pm »
A box speaker can do bass of course and the notes get played. OB bass for stringed instruments, like stand up bass, are much more 'real'. Say for instance a bass is playing in the back of the band and you are listening at low to moderate levels, you will hear and feel the bass in a more real fashion than any box speaker I have used. It may be subtle, but it is more real in tenor and texture.

I would almost say that we are programmed to feel bass is meant to be as all box speakers have presented it over the years. It can be boomy and smack you around. OB bass seems to envelop you more and adds to a more full room experience. Box speakers are delivering the music and you know that the boxes are there. OB speakers fill the room and bass can be more surround-like. Of course everything is dependent on the recording you are playing. I find that OB speaker deserve high rez whenever possible. Bad tracks on OB can be fugly sometimes.

zkeller

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Re: Open baffle Bass -- what does it sound like?
« Reply #6 on: 26 Nov 2020, 02:05 pm »
I get the impression (without actually ever hearing an OB speaker) that the bass you are describing is what I am looking for. I always listen at low to moderate levels and am keen to hear the texture and resonances from the instruments. I enjoy the big soundstage but don't like a confused, muddy, dare I call it noise, that sometimes seems to fill all the gaps.

So filling the room and being more surround-like are definitely what I am looking for.

sockpit

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Re: Open baffle Bass -- what does it sound like?
« Reply #7 on: 26 Nov 2020, 04:33 pm »
Sounds like Spatials may work for you.  Clayton can advise on size for your specific room. I’d error on the side of  M3 or X models if your room isn’t quite small.  Mine is (10 by 13ish) and I’m happy with, but still fine tuning my placement and room treatments. Almost a year out.

I, too, like a well grounded orchestral presentation.  My sound stage is huge for such near field (5 ft) listening.

jjss49

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Re: Open baffle Bass -- what does it sound like?
« Reply #8 on: 26 Nov 2020, 09:09 pm »
A box speaker can do bass of course and the notes get played. OB bass for stringed instruments, like stand up bass, are much more 'real'. Say for instance a bass is playing in the back of the band and you are listening at low to moderate levels, you will hear and feel the bass in a more real fashion than any box speaker I have used. It may be subtle, but it is more real in tenor and texture.

I would almost say that we are programmed to feel bass is meant to be as all box speakers have presented it over the years. It can be boomy and smack you around. OB bass seems to envelop you more and adds to a more full room experience. Box speakers are delivering the music and you know that the boxes are there. OB speakers fill the room and bass can be more surround-like. Of course everything is dependent on the recording you are playing. I find that OB speaker deserve high rez whenever possible. Bad tracks on OB can be fugly sometimes.

i very much agree with what is so well stated above

Early B.

Re: Open baffle Bass -- what does it sound like?
« Reply #9 on: 26 Nov 2020, 10:44 pm »
Even with Spatials, you'll benefit greatly from a separate OB sub or two.

Spatial Audio

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Re: Open baffle Bass -- what does it sound like?
« Reply #10 on: 26 Nov 2020, 10:55 pm »
Even with Spatials, you'll benefit greatly from a separate OB sub or two.

That is no longer true. The M3 Sapphire, X5 and X3 designs produce full range bass with good impact, essentially eliminating the need for subs in most situations. This allows your system to remain much simpler with less clutter in the room.

Clayton Shaw
Spatial Audio Lab

geerock

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Re: Open baffle Bass -- what does it sound like?
« Reply #11 on: 26 Nov 2020, 11:14 pm »
That is no longer true. The M3 Sapphire, X5 and X3 designs produce full range bass with good impact, essentially eliminating the need for subs in most situations. This allows your system to remain much simpler with less clutter in the room.

Clayton Shaw
Spatial Audio Lab

I found that true even I bought my X5's.  I have a very fast sealed ML sub that I have set very low (half of what it used to be.)  The real advantage of the Spatial bass is it true reproduction of the low octaves.  It helps a piano sound like a true piano.  A string bass sound like a true to life string bass.  Kettle and bass drums are more like live music.  I haven't had a boxed speaker in over 30 years and will never go back to them.  OB is definitely different than boxed speakers.  It actually takes a little getting used to, but my goal is to get to a live performance sound as much as possible.  If you have become used to the "slam" of a boxed speaker then you should really find a way to audition OB's before you pull the trigger.

zkeller

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Re: Open baffle Bass -- what does it sound like?
« Reply #12 on: 27 Nov 2020, 07:16 am »
That is no longer true. The M3 Sapphire, X5 and X3 designs produce full range bass with good impact, essentially eliminating the need for subs in most situations. This allows your system to remain much simpler with less clutter in the room.

Clayton Shaw
Spatial Audio Lab

I see that you have not included M5 in this list Clayton. Because of my room size (and finances), I was hoping that M5 would be right for me but it seems like it might be bass shy?