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5 Tips for Optimal Subwoofer Placement

So you bought a new subwoofer (or two). Congratulations! You probably spent a fair amount of time researching and comparing products to select the sub with the optimum performance within your budget. Whether you settled on a Velodyne or not, we want to make sure your hard work wasn’t wasted by helping you in the final step towards getting the best possible performance out of your subwoofer(s): optimal subwoofer placement. As some of our staff say (jokingly), the best place for your sub is wherever your significant other will let you put it. However, if you do have some flexibility, we’ll help you make the best of it!

With that in mind, here are some simple guidelines to follow that may help:

1. A Simple Chore–Stay Away from the Door As a general rule, avoid placing a subwoofer close to an opening in the room, such as a doorway or corridor.

2. Equidistance is the Wrong Distance Place the sub an unequal distance between any two walls for best performance.

3. You’ve Got the Power (right?) Make sure you have an AC outlet 110-117 volts and either line level RCA or speaker level wire that can run to the location where you are planning to place the sub.

4. No One Puts a Velodyne in the Corner Unless loudness is your top priority, we don’t recommend corner placement for the sub. Subwoofers placed in a corner will excite the room easier, making the sub more directional (i.e. you can tell where it is) and it will tend to emphasize the bass at certain frequencies. This may make the overall bass performance more boomy or muddy. Then again, if you want to impress your neighbors with your sub’s earth-shaking volume, the corner is the best place.

5. When In Doubt, Crawl If it turns out that you have multiple options for placement, one of the best ways to discriminate between them is The Crawl Test. Place the subwoofer in your La-Z-Boy (or wherever you’ll be listening from) and crawl around the room, either listening or measuring for the best sound. Wherever you are when the sub sounds best to you is where your subwoofer should go.

And voila! Perfect subwoofer placement. Also check out Velodyne’s instructional video series on subwoofer installation and set-up to hear this information and more in the words of our charming sales and engineering staff on Velodyne’s YouTube page.

Did this help? Let us know in the comments!

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8 Responses to “5 Tips for Optimal Subwoofer Placement”

  1. Peter Schwotzer September 29, 2011 at 8:46 pm #

    What if a corner is the only place you can put your sub? I have a B10XII from 1996, still going strong. My living room functions as my music/ home theater room. Has a bay window on the right, an opening to the kitchen to the left, back wall into open staircase with another room on the other side of hte stair case.

    My TV is in left corner as you are facing it, my speakers on either side, my rack to the right of the RF speaker and my sub in the right corner…really nowhere else to put it.

    • admin September 29, 2011 at 9:20 pm #

      If you only have one place to put your sub, that’s fine! These tips are just to help make the best placement choice if you have a little more flexibility in your space.

  2. Mark October 4, 2011 at 9:53 pm #

    I need to set up an older SPL 800 again with a new Yamaha amp. I’ve got it to work once, but since moving the kit, can’t get it to auto set up again. Can you offer any tips?

    • admin October 4, 2011 at 10:18 pm #

      To set up your subwoofer:

      1. Connect the LFE output from the receiver to the subwoofer’s left and right input using a y-splitter.
      2. On the subwoofer set the cross-over to direct, and turn the low pass cross-over knob to the highest setting.
      3. In your processor set the speakers all to small.
      4. In your processor set the cross-over between 80-100Hz.
      5. In your processor set the LFE or Sub out to the neutral 0db setting.
      6. Using the subwoofer volume adjust the bass mixture to your liking.

      Hope that helps! If you have any additional questions and would like to troubleshoot over the phone, please feel free to contact product support at (408) 465-2851.

  3. wright December 2, 2011 at 7:30 pm #

    Have you figured out how to get the 60hz hum out of your Velodyne 18″ It is present with no input connected. Have shipped in for repairs but no resolution.

    • admin December 6, 2011 at 10:11 pm #

      Hi Wright,

      Our customer service team should be in touch with you by email so that we can resolve your problem right away.

  4. David November 9, 2014 at 4:55 am #

    Will the Velodyne subwoofer function correctly on a carpeted floor?

    • Ace of Bass February 25, 2015 at 4:13 pm #

      Yes, our subwoofers should definitely function properly on a carpeted floor.

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