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keep_hope_alive
12-28-2012, 05:19 PM
Review of Ultra Subs A-12 Subwoofer

Vertex Audio hooked me up with an Ultra Subs A-12. I have experience with the Ultra Subs LV10 subwoofer, which I absolutely love.

The A-12 is part of Ultra Subs entry level series. But this is far from "entry level". MSRP is $150.

The subwoofer is suitable for
- Sealed
- Vented (ported)
- Infinite Baffle
- Aperiodic

I ran the A-12 in a vented/aperiodic enclosure as part of my home theater. It replaced the Vega-124 that was using the same enclosure. The A-12 outperformed the Vega 124 in every way. A-12 sounded better, more natural. A-12 played lower. I was very pleased and will likely get another A-12 for this purpose. The HT application was mostly for break-in and also to get a feel for the musicality of the subwoofer. The enclosure was a front-facing slot ported enclosure with fiberglass insulation fill in the cavities as well as the port (creating an aperiodic effect). Amplifier was a plate amp rated 240W@4ohm and 1%THD. Mechanical excursion limits were not exceeded at any point. The A-12 blended flawlessly with the Boston Acoustics A40 speakers it was paired with. The sub was located directly below one of the speakers, pointed at the listeners. Even crossover points as high as 160Hz were fine, the A-12 sounds very nice.

I moved the A-12 into my 2001 Honda Accord. I placed it in the IB/TB wall that previously held a pair of Oz Audio 300H subwoofers (12" IB subs). I have been very happy with the Oz subs for both output and musical ability. I ran the A-12 from two different amplifiers. The first was an Xtant 3300c on the mono output (160W@4ohm .01%THD). The second was a Rockford Fosgate 500x with one channel bridged (200W@4ohm and .1%THD). While the RF should have "more power", the Xtant 3300c certainly provides more impact and overall output.

Listening impressions:
I listen to a fairly wide range of music.

Alice in Chains - Unplugged - the A-12 blended very well with my frontstage midbass. Upfront bass was maintained. Very natural.

Deadmou5 - 4x4=12 - Excellent output, good impact. Sounds great!

The Civil Wars - Barton Hollow - Blended well with the front midbass. Combination of chello and bass were very natural.

Slayer - Raining Blood - The A-12 did great keeping up with a fast double bass and is right at home with metal.

Jurassic 5 - Power In Numbers - Good bass impact, and it plays low effortlessly. It revealed that my car is sealed well enough that my drivers door seal will give under the pressure generated by this single sub with less than 200W.

Stephen Lynch - Lion - This album has a mix of a fairly mellow ensemble. Again, the A-12 did it's job by being invisible yet impactfull.

Build Quality

- The cone is a decently stiff poly.
- The surround is durable.
- The basket is stamped steel, but coated and shaped to look like cast. It certainly is more rigid than any other steel basket i've seen. They saved money but didn't forget the end goal of rigidity.
- Push-terminals seem to be more common these days - they work just fine.
- Cooling is adequate, both pole piece and also coil/spider venting.
- Cosmetics are simple. I like that in a sub.

http://i38.photobucket.com/albums/e128/phat_funky_beats/UltraSubsA-12005_zps4e790ed5.jpg

http://i38.photobucket.com/albums/e128/phat_funky_beats/UltraSubsA-12004_zps4feca6f7.jpg

http://i38.photobucket.com/albums/e128/phat_funky_beats/UltraSubsA-12003_zpsd7d1f11f.jpg

http://i38.photobucket.com/albums/e128/phat_funky_beats/UltraSubsA-12001_zps9050d3b0.jpg


next up - RTA measurements.

West
12-28-2012, 05:30 PM
You listen to Stephen Lynch? Great stuff.

neo_styles
12-28-2012, 05:33 PM
You listen to Stephen Lynch? Great stuff.

Love me some Stephen Lynch. Thought nobody else appreciated him lol.

Glad to hear you've been happy with the sub, OP.

neo_styles
12-28-2012, 05:34 PM
You want impact, btw, check out Zedd - Clarity. Great album for showing off your sub stage. Will help you figure out if you're booming too much.

keep_hope_alive
12-28-2012, 05:45 PM
I also did a 30Hz-60Hz tone test, in 1Hz increments, and measured it the whole time. I'll post RTA results later tonight - got some family stuff to do.

FYI, the meter i used is the Casella CEL-633C (Class 1)

I'll do some tests below 20Hz as well.

West
12-28-2012, 05:47 PM
I also did a 30Hz-60Hz tone test, in 1Hz increments, and measured it the whole time. I'll post RTA results later tonight - got some family stuff to do.

FYI, the meter i used is the Casella CEL-633C (Class 1)

I'll do some tests below 20Hz as well.

Very nice review man.
$150 isn't bad for a new woofer.
Would you classify these as sound quality woofers?

Vertex Audio
12-28-2012, 06:17 PM
Review of Ultra Subs A-12 Subwoofer

Vertex Audio hooked me up with an Ultra Subs A-12. I have experience with the Ultra Subs LV10 subwoofer, which I absolutely love.

The A-12 is part of Ultra Subs entry level series. But this is far from "entry level". MSRP is $150.

The subwoofer is suitable for
- Sealed
- Vented (ported)
- Infinite Baffle
- Aperiodic

I ran the A-12 in a vented/aperiodic enclosure as part of my home theater. It replaced the Vega-124 that was using the same enclosure. The A-12 outperformed the Vega 124 in every way. A-12 sounded better, more natural. A-12 played lower. I was very pleased and will likely get another A-12 for this purpose. The HT application was mostly for break-in and also to get a feel for the musicality of the subwoofer. The enclosure was a front-facing slot ported enclosure with fiberglass insulation fill in the cavities as well as the port (creating an aperiodic effect). Amplifier was a plate amp rated 240W@4ohm and 1%THD. Mechanical excursion limits were not exceeded at any point. The A-12 blended flawlessly with the Boston Acoustics A40 speakers it was paired with. The sub was located directly below one of the speakers, pointed at the listeners. Even crossover points as high as 160Hz were fine, the A-12 sounds very nice.

I moved the A-12 into my 2001 Honda Accord. I placed it in the IB/TB wall that previously held a pair of Oz Audio 300H subwoofers (12" IB subs). I have been very happy with the Oz subs for both output and musical ability. I ran the A-12 from two different amplifiers. The first was an Xtant 3300c on the mono output (160W@4ohm .01%THD). The second was a Rockford Fosgate 500x with one channel bridged (200W@4ohm and .1%THD). While the RF should have "more power", the Xtant 3300c certainly provides more impact and overall output.

Listening impressions:
I listen to a fairly wide range of music.

Alice in Chains - Unplugged - the A-12 blended very well with my frontstage midbass. Upfront bass was maintained. Very natural.

Deadmou5 - 4x4=12 - Excellent output, good impact. Sounds great!

The Civil Wars - Barton Hollow - Blended well with the front midbass. Combination of chello and bass were very natural.

Slayer - Raining Blood - The A-12 did great keeping up with a fast double bass and is right at home with metal.

Jurassic 5 - Power In Numbers - Good bass impact, and it plays low effortlessly. It revealed that my car is sealed well enough that my drivers door seal will give under the pressure generated by this single sub with less than 200W.

Stephen Lynch - Lion - This album has a mix of a fairly mellow ensemble. Again, the A-12 did it's job by being invisible yet impactfull.

Build Quality

- The cone is a decently stiff poly.
- The surround is durable.
- The basket is stamped steel, but coated and shaped to look like cast. It certainly is more rigid than any other steel basket i've seen. They saved money but didn't forget the end goal of rigidity.
- Push-terminals seem to be more common these days - they work just fine.
- Cooling is adequate, both pole piece and also coil/spider venting.
- Cosmetics are simple. I like that in a sub.

http://i38.photobucket.com/albums/e128/phat_funky_beats/UltraSubsA-12005_zps4e790ed5.jpg

http://i38.photobucket.com/albums/e128/phat_funky_beats/UltraSubsA-12004_zps4feca6f7.jpg

http://i38.photobucket.com/albums/e128/phat_funky_beats/UltraSubsA-12003_zpsd7d1f11f.jpg

http://i38.photobucket.com/albums/e128/phat_funky_beats/UltraSubsA-12001_zps9050d3b0.jpg


next up - RTA measurements.

Awesome man! Great review and im glad your liking the sub. Excited to see the RTA measurements :yumyum:

keep_hope_alive
12-28-2012, 11:24 PM
Very nice review man.
$150 isn't bad for a new woofer.
Would you classify these as sound quality woofers?

certainly. i wouldn't be interested in them if they weren't. The LV series is also suitable for SQ, especially the specialty LV12SQ.

Spooney
12-29-2012, 03:41 AM
Great review. Very detailed. Any chance you could run this sub in a more standard car audio alignment like a plain sealed or ported box? Just to give the rest of us a good idea of what it can do for those of us who don't run IB? I really like the looks of the sub.

keep_hope_alive
12-29-2012, 10:45 AM
Great review. Very detailed. Any chance you could run this sub in a more standard car audio alignment like a plain sealed or ported box? Just to give the rest of us a good idea of what it can do for those of us who don't run IB? I really like the looks of the sub.

certainly, i plan on trying other enclosures. I can also measure it in other vehicles - like a van with a Massive N4 amp. I plan on building a few dedicated vented enclosures for the sub - maybe one for SPL and one for very flat, low response (for HT). I'll update this thread as testing continues.

What's nice about my setup, is that there is no low frequency limit determined by the enclosure. Hence clean output below 20Hz.

Measurements were taken with the trunk open, cabin sealed (doors closed, windows up). Open trunk eliminates cancellation that would invalidate the measurement. Volume was moderate, I was not looking for maximum output, but what the response looked like.

Pink Noise (correlated)
http://i38.photobucket.com/albums/e128/phat_funky_beats/A-12pinknoise2_zps4e4f2a66.png

You can see my LPF at 80Hz (starts a bit sooner on the 9887). I turned up my midbass HPF for testing otherwise the dip goes away. The dip at 500Hz is due to mic position and standing waves inside the cabin.

Pink Noise (uncorrelated)
http://i38.photobucket.com/albums/e128/phat_funky_beats/A-12pinknoise_zps8f60a192.png

Background Noise (represents about 18dBA)
http://i38.photobucket.com/albums/e128/phat_funky_beats/bkgndnoise_zpsef37a828.png

PHD - USA
12-29-2012, 10:50 AM
I have been running these subs in a home theater down-firing box. Let me tell you this, put on a 20hz tone and it flexes the glass to a point where I am afraid. I may be able to post up a video today if time permits. These are great sounding subs for a great price!

pinoy2o9
01-02-2013, 04:58 PM
i had a single SPL ultra audio 18" in my trunk. They are no joke company with only the best intension. Quality built and material. Handles tremendous amounts of power. Im about to run 2 more 18's in my trunk. Cant wait.

keep_hope_alive
11-21-2013, 09:20 PM
website:
Ultra (http://www.ultracaraudio.com/a-series.html)

specs:
A-12 Specs:

Thiele Small Parameters: 12”

Nominal Impedance Znom ohms 4.0

DC Resistance DCR ohms 4.19

Resonant Frequency Fs Hz 27.17

Mechanical Q Qms 6.06

Electrical Q Qes 0.65

Total Q Qts 0.59

Xmax (linear) in 0.433

Xmax (mechanical) in 0.866

Sensitivity 2.83 volts dB 87.44

Effective Piston Area Sd m2 0.0483

Acoustic Compliance Vas liters 65.77

Moving Mass Mms grams 172.85

Suspension Compliance Cms μm/N 198.5

Motor Strength BL TM 13.75

Magnet and Voice Coil:

Voice Coil Diameter d in 2"

Voice Coil Length hvc in 1.2"

Voice Coil Layers n 4

Voice Coil Type Single

Continuous Power watts 250

Maximum Power watts 500

Weights and Dimensions:

Magnet OD in 5.24

Magnet Thickness in 0.98

Frame OD w/gasket in 12 3/8

Mounting Hole in 10 15/16

Mounting Depth in 5.95

scheibler
02-16-2014, 11:21 PM
How does this sub compare to a Type-R, Kappa, Dcon, Dayton HO, Boston G1, etc? I'm looking for a kinda sq oriented sub bc I listen to alot of rock/alternative/metal, but I also listen to rap/techno and like to feel the thump. Could this deliver that in a 1^ft sealed box?

Vertex Audio
10-06-2014, 06:53 PM
These are back in stock, a great woofer for under $100!

Ultra Audio A-12 12" Single 4 Ohm Subwoofer (http://www.vertexaudio.com/Ultra-Audio-A-12-12-Single-4-Ohm-Subwoofer-p/ultraa12.htm)