Popping Sound In PSW450

rsmith4321rsmith4321 Posts: 12
edited September 2002 in Troubleshooting
I have a PSW450 subwoofer, I've already ordered a replacement from Crutchfield because of this problem. But was wondering if anyone knows what is causing it. Whenever bass gets intense such as in a movie, the sub starts putting out terrible popping and cracking noises. It sound like it's going to explode or something. I don't have it turned up that loud either, I have my receiver at -25db. What is funny is the bass sounds great, until it starts popping. I know it's not a problem with my dolby digital receiver, because I've never heard popping from my main speakers. I've hooked up the sub all different ways, including using speaker level inputs with the same results. I have an excellent quality subwoofer cable hooked up from the LFE output on my receiver to the LFE input on the sub. No matter what I do it still pops. Any ideas what's wrong with this sub?
Post edited by rsmith4321 on
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Comments

  • fireshoesfireshoes Posts: 3,212
    edited August 2002
    How much do you have the volume turned up on the sub itself? You really shouldn't need to go past 12 o'clock on the 450.
  • rsmith4321rsmith4321 Posts: 12
    edited August 2002
    I did have it turned up pretty high, but it seems to need to be that high to produce bass that really hits hard like I wanted. I've noticed from watching the sub that it pops when the bass gets really low, when the woofer is moving really far. But I would think if the bass was too low for the sub it would distort or something, but not make a pop that sounds like the thing is going to explode. What is strange too is that the bass sounds great except for the popping, if it just didn't pop I haven't noticed any distortion or anything. It just sounds so good except for the loud electrical popping sound. Maybe I just need an PSW650.
  • mantismantis Posts: 15,296
    edited August 2002
    I owned that sub for..well since it first came out, never had any problems with it filling the room or such, the pop is the sub distorting or you blew it.If it doen't have the volume, then you need a bigger sub.
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.
  • GuitarheadCAGuitarheadCA Posts: 400
    edited August 2002
    never Heard a 450 pop, but I've sent a few 350s home unhappy from the demo room.

    What I've noticed is that when you push it hard. It bottoms out. Hard. It sounds like someone took a wooden baseball bat and craked it on the box. Of course that's pushing it really hard (customers like alot of bass) and I've never (ever) run in to that problem when it was properly balanced in my room.

    But what your describing sounds like it's bottoming out to me.
  • nascarmannnascarmann Posts: 1,464
    edited August 2002
    I agree with GuitarheadCA......
    Oh, the bottle has been to me, my closes friend, my worse enemy!
  • rsmith4321rsmith4321 Posts: 12
    edited August 2002
    I understand what your saying, but the first time I turned this thing on a tried to watch a movie it started popping badly, my friend and I immediately were thinking something bad is wrong with this sub. I've never heard a sub do this before. I even had a really cheap sub and pushed it as hard as it would go, it sounded bad but it never made loud popping. Now that I think about it, I just assumed it was something else wrong with thier system, but when I demoed this sub at Circuit City I noticed a few loud pops. They should have some sort of cut off or something that will stop the sub from trying to play sounds that are so low they cause it to bottom out. Anyway, if this is really the way the sub is I'm going to have to go with another brand. I've never heard another sub that sounds like it's going to explode when the bass get low like this one. I'm still hopping the replacement I'm getting won't have this problem, that there is just something wrong with this sub. Because if not I really dissapointed with Polk.
  • RuSsMaNRuSsMaN Posts: 17,995
    edited August 2002
    So you noticed the sub 'popping' at Circuit City, and went ahead and bought the sub anyway? I think that would have been an ender for me right there.

    Then you get home, hook your new sub up, and this same 'popping' occurs? Are you really expecting another one to act different? Third time's a charm?

    Sounds like you want more than 450 is designed to do, perhaps you should look elsewhere.....

    Cheers,
    Russ
    Check your lips at the door woman. Shake your hips like battleships. Yeah, all the white girls trip when I sing at Sunday service.
  • rsmith4321rsmith4321 Posts: 12
    edited August 2002
    Well I know you are trying to sound smart, but if you saw the way they have everything hooked up in Circuit City you would understand why I didn't think it was the sub that was popping. If you are not going to give me advice that is in anyway helpful I don't know why you bother writing. I assumed it was a problem with their system as I mentioned, I didn't think that a sub could pop so I assumed as I already mentioned it wasn't the sub. It sounded great beside a pop I heard a couple of times, which I assumed was an unrelated problem. And I bought the sub from Crutchfield anyway, not Circuit City. And I didn't really relate that the pop in CC was the same as what I'm getting now until I thought more about it and read a message here from someone who worked there and noticed the same problem. You are probably right though, I just want more than the 450 can put out. Any suggestions on a sub that can hit deeper stronger bass without problems? I didn't want to spend quite as much as a 650, and I'm afraid it will pop too.
  • RuSsMaNRuSsMaN Posts: 17,995
    edited August 2002
    Smart? I thought that pretty straight forward myself....

    Tell me how 'everything' was hooked up at CC, and what particular 'thing' made you think it was causing this noise (and why you didnt ask them to correct it)? I did give you advice, advice to look elsewhere for your subwoofer needs...

    Circuit City, Crutchfield, 6 of one etc etc. You had an un-satifactory store demo, then bought the unit via mail-order, and had another un-satisfactory demo at home... Now you expect another identical unit to make you happy?

    Look into SVS, Dayton Titanic, HSU, not many other subs in that price range that are going to do a 'whole lot' more than the 450 does....unless DIY is an option for you....

    Cheers,
    Smart Guy
    Check your lips at the door woman. Shake your hips like battleships. Yeah, all the white girls trip when I sing at Sunday service.
  • TroyDTroyD Posts: 12,638
    edited August 2002
    sounds to me like the sub was clipping......

    Plus, I'm going to agree with Russ, if something demos that bad without being able to rule out the possibility it was the sub, I'd kind of question the logic in buying it. I've been to a few CC's, while the demo rooms are not ideal, I've never seen one using a broken component.


    BDT
    I plan for the future. - F1Nut
  • TroyDTroyD Posts: 12,638
    edited August 2002
    As far as other options, Russ has listed a few. A couple guys have gone the DIY route with good results and some are REALLY into REL.



    BDT
    I plan for the future. - F1Nut
  • rsmith4321rsmith4321 Posts: 12
    edited August 2002
    How did this turn into an argument about if I'm stupid for buying the sub? Maybe I am. I don't think any of you guys get the CC thing. I didn't have an unsatisfactory store demo, I thought the sub sounded great. I noticed a couple of pops from the system that wasn't that noticeable in the store, it certainly did not sound like the sub. I really didn't take the time I should have to check it out throughly. I guess I'm stupid but I just assumed they had something hooked up wrong somewhere, they didn't even have this sub hooked up until I asked. It sounded great to me for the money. By the way, I ordered it from Crutchfield so I can send it back no charge if I'm not satisfied, so I wasn't too concerned. I'm still not, I'll just send the replacement back too. That's why Crutchfield is so great even though it cost a little more. An argument about whether I should have bought this sub was not the point of the message thread, I just wanted to know if the popping was normal and any suggestions to fix it or what to buy that would be better. And I just wanted to know why a sub would pop in the first place. Has anyone tried the new JBL 400 watt sub. I've seen it for about $450 and was wondering if anyone has tried it.
  • TroyDTroyD Posts: 12,638
    edited August 2002
    No one is calling you dumb there broham, but, I would have investigated the problem more thoroughly. Hey, I've bought stuff on reputation before myself. I just concur with the theory that the sub is being overtaxed.

    BDT
    I plan for the future. - F1Nut
  • RuSsMaNRuSsMaN Posts: 17,995
    edited August 2002
    No one called you stupid, I certainly don't think you are, just trying to throw some logic out, thats all.

    The 2 most probable reasons why the sub would make noise are covered above, amp clipping, or the driver bottoming out, or some of both. (assuming all else in order, box is solid, etc)

    Let us know what happens, and what you end up with.....

    -R
    Check your lips at the door woman. Shake your hips like battleships. Yeah, all the white girls trip when I sing at Sunday service.
  • mantismantis Posts: 15,296
    edited August 2002
    You guys you guys

    You need to cool your jets alittle on the new guys.....SORRY DUDE IT'S JUST THERE WAY, THEY MEAN WELL....SOMETIMES.......

    Dude call Polk and talk to them about your problem.I own that mother effer and had no problems with mine...hell Id sell you mine as it's on it's way out my door due to upgrading......

    I can also give you some really good setup tips to optimize you system .......smile, don't let the I WONDER TWINS get to you.....
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.
  • nascarmannnascarmann Posts: 1,464
    edited August 2002
    don't let the I WONDER TWINS get to you.....

    Damn.....there goes that sence of humor again....:D
    Oh, the bottle has been to me, my closes friend, my worse enemy!
  • MxStYlEpOlKmAnMxStYlEpOlKmAn Posts: 2,116
    edited August 2002
    SOUNDS LIKE U LIKE BAAAAAAAASSSSS! Ok the sub isnt made to be played past what its suposed to be. ANd technically this particular sub dont go as low as u wish it would...and at this high volume on the sub and your receiver makes the sub really push...and 500 - 400 bucks...ur not going to get it....i doubt the 450 goes past 30 hz... the 650 is alot better for your tastes...and if you wanna hear a sub go below 20 its not for you either...u need to look at subs 1000 or more or get a 300 dollar yamaha that hits 20 flat...and has dual 8 inch sub.
    Damn you all, damn you all to hell.......
    I promised myself
    No more speakers. None. Nada. And then you posted this!!!!
    Damn you all! - ATC
  • TroyDTroyD Posts: 12,638
    edited August 2002
    IWONDER twins....WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHH

    In all seriousness though, I don't think that the guy is stupid, however, given the circumstances, I don't understand why he would have bought the sub given his experience at CC. The logic there escapes me. Second, plain and simple, the sub is being pushed beyond it's capabilities from what he is describing. Tweak it all you want but if you are pushing it to where it is bottoming out and/or clipping the amp, tweaking ain't the answer. Turn it down or buy a sub more in line with your tastes. What's so bad about that advice?

    It's sort of like me taking my 15wpc Marantz receiver and trying to push my DQ's to earsplitting levels. It's not designed for that kind of abuse. If you use it within it's capabilities, it's stellar. If you abuse it, well, that's what you get.

    BDT
    I plan for the future. - F1Nut
  • MxStYlEpOlKmAnMxStYlEpOlKmAn Posts: 2,116
    edited August 2002
    ....lol what he said
    Damn you all, damn you all to hell.......
    I promised myself
    No more speakers. None. Nada. And then you posted this!!!!
    Damn you all! - ATC
  • fireshoesfireshoes Posts: 3,212
    edited August 2002
    I would get a replacement sub. Run it with a Monster MB400 sub cable, using the Y-splitter, and put the sub in a corner. You shouldn't have to turn any higher than 1 or 2 o'clock at the very most. You might need to experiment with placement of the sub because that can greatly affect the sound, but corner-loading the sub will usually help increase your volume significantly.
  • rsmith4321rsmith4321 Posts: 12
    edited August 2002
    Just to see I decided to go into Circuit City today and see if I could get the sub to pop. I turned it up and ran some THX test and it sounded great, it was really shaking to place, I couldn't get it to pop in the store again. I'm still thinking maybe there is something wrong with this sub, I'll find out tomorrow when the replacement arrives. Maybe I'm just pushing it too hard, I guess I'll see.
  • GuitarheadCAGuitarheadCA Posts: 400
    edited August 2002
    Hey- after all it could be defective driver, like I said, I've never heard a 450 pop, only a 350. I would reiterate what fireshoes said about placing the sub in a corner, this can help significantly. Also, you've been to CC- did you look into the Velodyne CHT series? As suggested earlier, HSU, SVS, Titan and many others are better subs, but the CHT series is easy to find and listen to, and they have Anti-clipping circuits and Volume limiters. It's tough to get one to choke. So if you don't want to worry about pushing a sub too hard, you might consider the CHT 12 for a few bucks more.
  • mantismantis Posts: 15,296
    edited August 2002
    Dude before you start driving the **** out of it, let it break in for a couple weeks.

    Set it up correctly if you know how, use a test tone generator and a SPL meter to get you going.Remember this key point.................The sub should blend in with the rest of the system, not dominate it.I think your dominating the rest of your system with it.But when the new replacement comes in ,just give it some time before you start blasting it.

    As one half of the I Wonder Twins stated.....It just might not be the sub for you.
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.
  • danger boydanger boy Posts: 15,888
    edited August 2002
    i've had my 350 pop a few times like during the depth charge scenes in U-571 but not very often. i guess if you drive any speaker beyond what it's designed to do.. it's going to pop.
    Mantis makes a good point... get at SPL meter from Radio shack and set all your speakers to the proper level. if the bass seems to low.. then you're just a basshead. no offense meant
    PolkFest 2012, who's going>?
    Vancouver, Canada Sept 30th, 2012 - Madonna concert :cheesygrin:
  • danger boydanger boy Posts: 15,888
    edited August 2002
    oh yeah.. what receiver are you driving your speakers with? give us some specs on your unit.
    PolkFest 2012, who's going>?
    Vancouver, Canada Sept 30th, 2012 - Madonna concert :cheesygrin:
  • rsmith4321rsmith4321 Posts: 12
    edited August 2002
    I have a Kenwood VR-209 100 watts per channel. I don't think that would matter though because I'm using the LFE output. And I've never heard popping from my main speakers. Oh, by the way one thing I should have mentioned when I noticed the popping the worst is during Jurassic Park 3, I think that movie must hit some really low bass. And I think a firecracker going off best describes the sound the sub makes. It sounds like when something is being shorted out like a loud electrical pop. I still haven't got the new sub so I'll see soon if it still pops.
  • toddiebtoddieb Posts: 11
    edited August 2002
    If you heard loud "pops" like a firecracker you could very well have some loose or intermittant connections. That happened to me a few years back (before I had my Polks). I had this cheap sub - I think it was an AudioSource. I had to pull it apart and re-solder some connections, then it was fine. I didn't complain because I bought it as an opened item from Best Buy.
    Good luck with yours. Let us know the outcome.
    I'm considering a new sub right now and I can't decide between the PSW450 / PSW550 / PSW650. Anyone have suggestions?????
  • rsmith4321rsmith4321 Posts: 12
    edited August 2002
    Well I just got the new sub, but now I'm afraid to turn it up until it been broken in for a while from what I've been reading. So I haven't had any pops yet, but I haven't pushed it hard either. I figure I have 30 days before I have to decide to keep it, so I'll give it a good break in time and then see how pushing it will do.
  • freidfreid Posts: 24
    edited August 2002
    Originally posted by toddieb

    I'm considering a new sub right now and I can't decide between the PSW450 / PSW550 / PSW650. Anyone have suggestions?????

    Velodyne CHT12. Beautiful sound man.
  • GuitarheadCAGuitarheadCA Posts: 400
    edited August 2002
    If you want:

    Music in a smaller room- PSW 550

    More slam in a bigger room- PSW 450

    The best of both worlds- PSW 650
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