We have checked out a few products from SVS’s lineup; our latest is the SB-1000 Pro Subwoofer. This is a 12-inch front-firing sub with a 325-watt (820 peak) plate amplifier. It is available in three finishes, Piano Black, Piano White, and Black ash. Ours is the Black ash variety. I have seen all three finishes in person and all of them have a premium look, making decisions on which finish comes down to the space you are putting it in. The SB1000 Pro retails for $599.99 (U.S), $100 dollars more than the previous SB-1000. An extra 100 dollars gets you some nice tech though, such as the control App, better interface, and a more powerful amp. We tried out the SB-1000 Pro in both a theater and a 2.1-channel system to see how it performed in both movies and music. Let’s hop in and see how it stacks up.
Unboxing and Setup
While the SB1000 Pro is small in relation to its bigger brothers it is still a dense and fairly heavy sub at 26lbs, you may want a second pair of hands to help you get it out of the box. The packing is sufficient to protect the sub from normal shipping mishaps, granted we have all seen some nightmare scenarios that no packaging would protect against. Once out of the box, there are not many accessories to dig out, you have the manual, power cord, and grille.
I started with the same location I keep my Klipsch down firing sub, while I figured this wouldn’t be optimal it gave me a starting position to then dial in. In my room, the best place that fit was a little in front of my mains and next to my amps. There may be a more perfect sounding placement but ultimately I am limited by practicality as well as sonics. I played some test tones and moved around the room and it worked well in that spot. The great thing with SVS’s newer subs is you can also dial in your sound through the app. If you are limited by your space and can not get a perfect placement you can make adjustments in the app. I played around with the EQ and phase as well as level to get it to sound the best. As you will see in the graphs the bass and sub-bass have a bump, which is how I like my system, I’m a bit of a bass head. The great thing though is you can really tune this sub to meet your tastes, all from your listening position.
The app is pretty good, it’s not perfect but SVS is also not an App company so I really don’t have any complaints. I would say the interface, responsiveness, and ease of use are very good. Connecting your sub is super simple, just make sure Bluetooth is turned on, on your phone and the sub is on, and pair them in your settings. Then open the app and you will see a green Bluetooth symbol next to the sub name if they paired, and a red one if they didn’t. Once connected you can work your way through the menus on the top right to change the various settings to get your preferred sound. Also if you changed settings and don’t like what you got you can reset to factory settings and start over.
Subs have less sound signature than main speakers, they also cover much less of the frequency range, typically a couple of hundred hertz down to as low as they can handle. So it’s hard to describe what a sub sounds like in the way we would other full-range components, however, we can certainly talk about the quality of the bass produced. The SB1000 Pro has great control over bass, you don’t get muddy sound or the chuffing sound some subs can have. The Cone is pretty rigid and made from a Fiber Composite, meaning it is also light for its size. Weight and rigidity are a balancing act in a driver cone, the lighter it is the more responsive it will be (read detail), and the more rigid the cone, the less distortion. The problem is you have to sacrifice one for the other or have a cost-prohibitive product. The heavier a cone, the more power and damping your amp needs to have to control the inertia of the cone, meaning a once again more expensive product. SVS seems to have found a good balance for the SB-1000 Pro, with “only” 325 watts RMS the built-in amp is able to control the sub even under demanding scenarios and trust me I pushed it.
One of the first albums I had to listen to was Run the Jewels – RTJ 4. The entire album is full of hard-hitting and sustained bass lines. I knew this album would show me the limits of the sub, or so I thought. Ultimately I did not hear any clipping at above comfortable volumes. I am sure that limit exists, but I had my sub out turned up to max on the Marantz, as well as the sub all the way up in the app. Normally my Marantz volume hovers between 35-40 for comfortable volume, I turned it up to around 55 to really get the sub moving and it was still clean, my room decorations on the other hand were making their own noise while vibrating on the walls.
Hip Hop is far from the only music that will take advantage of a subwoofer, I also wanted to see how it handled orchestral as well so of course, I had to listen to Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake as played by The Philadelphia Orchestra with Eugene Ormandy conducting. The bass drum, as well as the Bassoons all, reach low in the production and the SB-1000 Pro presents these notes with detail and impact. Depending on your crossover and your bass handling on your main speakers the sub may have to do a lot of the heavy lifting for these instruments as well as Double Basses, Trombones, Tubas, and many others. I have seen people who primarily listen to classical think a Sub isn’t for them, but classical music has notes well into a subwoofers frequency range and a sub will fill out the sound.
I also had to give Midnights by Taylor Swift a spin as it had just come in the mail over the weekend. It is not a conventionally bassy album, however, it has a good amount of deeper notes and beats. “Vigilante Shit” has a powerful bass line and the SB1000 Pro hits you with incredible impact. The bass though does not overpower softer notes or Taylor’s voice throughout the song, which is important. It is very easy to get bass that takes over the room. This comes back to the awesome tunning options for the sub, you can make it blend right into your main speakers, or even present a little more if you are like me and want a bit of extra bass.
The subwoofer driver itself is not an off-the-shelf driver, this is designed for this application. I mentioned this when reviewing the Sonetto V, when you design all the parts to work together you get a better quality finished product. If you use off-the-shelf parts you have to design the rest to fit that part’s specs, be it the driver, amp, or cabinet. The cabinet of the SB-1000 Pro is a different size compared to the ported version, its volume is optimized to this driver specifically which changes depending on whether it is sealed or ported, SVS isn’t just punching holes in one box to make the PB-1000 version. The design harmony lends itself to sonic harmony.
The ability for me to blend the subwoofer into my system was astonishing. My Klipsch never really melted into my system to this level, and to be fair it doesn’t have the tuning options either. I will also say that the SVS doesn’t sound out of place with my Sonetto V speakers. Sonus Faber does make a “matching” Gravis II and III Subwoofer, but at a price of $1500.00 and $2750.00 respectively, I have been hesitant to pick one up. I would imagine they too would blend well with my speakers as they are designed to match them, but I have not heard them in person to confirm. The thing is, for $599.00 I know the SVS will also play well with them. It sounds less like 2.1 and more like a 2-channel system that reaches low into the bass registars.
After spending time with the SB-1000 Pro in my 2.1 system, I switched it out with the PB-1000 Pro in the theater. I am not a movie buff, and the theater is really my wife’s domain. I had her try the sub out in all sorts of different scenarios, though I also watched a couple of my favorite action movies. The SB-1000 Pro has such good control that it’s not something you may feel the need to turn off or mess with while watching a regular TV show. Jen watches a handful of shows where you don’t really need booming bass, but when she wants to watch a movie she wants to feel the bass as much as hear it. The sub that was in our theater was a Boston Acoustics VR500, a 10inch sub with a 100-watt amplifier. I say was as it recently has given up the ghost, however, while it was working it was an okay sub but it struggled with the effects in many action films. Watching the Dark Knight trilogy you could hear distortion often throughout the movies. There were many times you could hear the Boston sub reaching its limits. The SB-1000 Pro has not shown any weakness at least at reasonable listening levels. Without cranking up the volume it shook the room, you could feel explosions in our sectional without hearing the sub itself.
We watched a few more contemporary movies, one of which was “The Other Guys” with Mark Wahlberg and Will Farrel. It is full of over-the-top explosions, being a comedy/action they definitely play up the stereotypes. Effects sounded clean and deep, while not taking over the room. We also watched “Rush Hour” a 90’s classic, and there is a stark difference in the fidelity of modern and older movies as recording and mastering tech wasn’t as advanced, that said the effects still sounded wonderful and big. So whether you are into vintage or modern films you should be happy with the performance.
Placement is a little more limited in our theater room as the electronics sit on a built-in shelf and I prefer to keep visible cables to a minimum, however, we placed the sub on the front wall, next to the left speaker. It worked well there and didn’t have any boominess even being against a wall. That said I do prefer it moved out a bit. Here again, I played with the various settings to get the sound to how we liked and we were off to the races. It is also worth mentioning if you want to place your sub in a more optimal position and don’t want to see wires, SVS offers a wireless kit to handle the signal, so all you need is a near by power outlet.
Pros and Cons
- crisp detailed bass
- good control and responsiveness
- app control
- cabinet size
- easy to tune
- none at this price
For me the only “downside” to this subwoofer is that it seems pricey for a 12 Inch sub, not to say that it is overpriced though. There is a lot of competition in the subwoofer market and many people will look online, or at their local big box store and see powered subs for a couple hundred bucks, then see the price of the SB-1000 Pro and think it is much too expensive. I have owned plenty of cheap subs and while they work, they are extremely limited in sound quality and bass extension. Granted if that is your budget you should look for the best in that range. All that said when you compare the SB-1000 Pro to subs in its price category the value proposition becomes much clearer. When compared to common options the SVS offers the most power in a 12inch sub for under 1000 dollars and is one of only a few I know of that has a native app for tuning it. I think the biggest competitor to the SVS is REL HT1205, which sounds objectively good, and should for nearly double the price. However, REL chooses not to offer any type of tone control through Apps, DSP, or even analog knobs. You can control volume and crossover, but you will need an external device to tune it such as a Mini DSP. So as you can see the price point becomes much more understandable when you are getting ease of use and excellent bass sound quality.
Measurements were taken using a Calibrated UMIK-1 and REW on a MacBook Pro at the listening position.
The first measurement I took shows how it measures set up how I preferred the sound. The Preamp sub preouts were set to 0, Sub was set at -5dB, Parametric EQ set to +3.5db at 20Hz with a Q Factor of 0.2
As you can see we have a fairly flat response with the bump in the bass, and the roll-off starting around 20Hz.
Next, we have the same preamp settings but with the subwoofer set to factory defaults.
Here we have both for easier comparison.
- 20-270 Hz +/- 3 dB
- Expect 2-3 Hz deeper extension in small to mid-size rooms.
- 2-meter ground plane away from reflective structures (quasi-anechoic).
- Roll-off slope specifically optimized to take maximum advantage of available room gain.
- Protective non-resonant extra-thick ABS fabric mesh grille
- Iso-elastomer feet included
- Extra heavy-duty, high current power cord 6′
- Quick Start Guide
- Unbalanced stereo input/output
- Speaker Level Stereo Input
- Auto/On and Trigger options through app, 3-12V AC/DC trigger
- RoHS compliant, lead-free construction, world-wide safety certifications
- Green 0.5-watt low standby power consumption
- Dimensions (w/ grille): 13.5” (342mm) H X 13” (330mm) W X 14.76” (375mm) D
- Dimensions (without grille): 13.5” (342mm) H X 13” (330mm) W X 13.9” (352mm) D
- Shipped Dimensions: 17.4” (455mm) H 17.4” (442mm) W X 18.4” (471mm) D
- Weight (unboxed): 26lbs (11.9kg) with Grille
- Shipped Weight: 31.1lbs (15kg)
- All-new proprietary 12-inch long-throw driver with high-precision tuned overhung motor configuration.
- 8.33lb (3.78kg) pound Woofer with 5.73lb (2.6kg) pounds motor
- 13.3mm Xmax, 26.9mm Xmech precision aligned excursion
- 1.5” diameter Voice Coil with high current 6-layer high-purity copper wire windings
- Premium high-purity copper voice coil winding design minimizes distortion and power compression with maximum heat dissipation, linearity, and tuned magnetics for high excursion
- Two-piece high grade oversized Y30 Ferrite magnet motor
- High Temperature 3003-H18 aluminum former/bobbing
- 6” composite cotton-poly extreme excursion linear spider
- Dual 24-strand copper-alloy high-temperature leads
- Proprietary injection molded gasket and NBR extreme-excursion surround
- Lightweight treated Fiber Composite cone for enhanced sensitivity and transient response
- Top plate assembly with low carbon 1010 steel for optimal magnetics
- Oversized low carbon 1008 steel T-yoke with integrated pole piece extension for maximum cooling and electromagnetics
- 12” premium powder coated basket with FEA optimized analysis for maximum rigidity, tensile strength, and energy transference
- Oversized motor system for driving full excursion and industry best SPL, with pinpoint transient speed
- Precision machining for motor and narrow tolerance suspension parts ensure flawless linearity at full range of excursion
SVS Sledge-325D Amplifier Specs:
- 325 watts RMS, 820+ watts peak power output Class D design
- 50MHz Analog Devices Audio DSP, high resolution double precision 56bit filtering
- Wide input voltage bandwidth compliant for consumer and pro audio up to 4V line level input.
- High efficiency LLC resonant SMPS with 17A 650V MOSFET, resonant switching results in lower EMI and highest efficiency.
- Cool-running Class D amplifier switching topology with massive 34A 120V MOSFET’s
- SVS BLE control app for iOS and Android contains 3 complete name-able and customizable User presets, supports IOS (iphone5 or newer or Android (4.42 or newer), 3 PEQ’s per preset, adjustable low pass, phase, polarity, room gain compensation, and control for best alignment with speakers.
- Custom EQ and DSP limiter settings specifically for the 1000 Pro
- Input impedance 16kohm (unbalance RCA)
- Input impedance 1kohm (speaker level)
- New Intelligent Feature control (IFC) user interface on the amplifier with bright blue 11 LED bar display and easy push-button controls.
SVS App Specs:
- Bluetooth controlled subwoofer DSP smartphone app works with iOS, Android and Amazon operating systems.
- Easiest and most convenient way to adjust crossover frequencies, parametric EQ, polarity, room gain and all other bass management functions.
- Three convenient custom presets allow for perfect tuning in any room or system, from your favorite seat.
- Unique bidirectional feedback shows adjustments in real time on both app and subwoofer interface.
- Easy-to-follow tutorial provides clear guidance for all functions.
- Protective non-resonant extra-thick ABS fabric mesh grille
- Iso-elastomer feet included
- Extra heavy-duty, high current 6-foot power cord
- Quick Start Guide
- Marantz SR7009 Pre Amp
- Mcintosh MC250 Power Amp
- Nakamichi PA-5 Stasis Power Amp
- Sonus Faber Sonetto V Speakers
- Audioquest Power and Interconnects
- Prosper Cables Custom Speaker Cables
- Rotel CD-11 Tribute
- Audio-Technica LP-7 w/ Quintet Blue
- FIIO M9 (FLAC / Streaming Services)
- iPhone 14 Pro
- Onkyo TX-NR686
- Martin Logan Motion LX-16 Mains
- JBL In-wall and In-ceiling Atmos
- Boston Acoustics VR500 sub (normally)
- Samsung 65 Inch LCD HDTV
- Streaming services for sources
The SB-1000 Pro is certainly a wonderful subwoofer. The sound quality is superb, and the ease of use is a nice touch. Having an app to control the sub from the listening position makes tuning so much easier. Clean and deep bass is at your fingertips, both literally and figuratively. The way the SB-1000 Pro can blend into a system will certainly make just about any listener happy. I like a little boost in my bass, but don’t want it to overtake the rest of the music and the SB-1000 Pro allowed me to dial it in with ease. The subwoofer seems fairly forgiving for positioning due to your tuning options, though for the best sound you may find that moving the sub away from walls will help. Keep in mind placement is not something that only affects this subwoofer, this will be a challenge with any speaker. I think something that may come as a surprise to some, the SB-1000 Pro didn’t feel out of place playing with my Sonus Faber Sonetto V’s, a $5000.00 pair of speakers. I would happily use the SB-1000 Pro as my reference subwoofer with those speakers. All that said, I think there are better subs on the market, from both SVS themselves as well as others but for this price point, SVS really nailed the performance. If you are looking to up your theater system and have the budget the SVS SB-1000 pro should be on your list to audition.
For more information on how to buy or audition an SVS SB-1000 Pro click the link below
SVS Provided Hifi Chicken with a SB-1000 Pro for review, SVS nor any affiliate paid in full or part in exchange for this review.