An honest SVS SB-2000 review after 2 years of bass pounding happiness
It’s hard these days to buy a subwoofer without hearing the name SVS. For years they have been producing top-level speakers and subwoofers that continue to win fans. We included them in the Dolby atmos speakers list we did as their Prime Elevation speakers are amazing.
This SVS SB-2000 review comes after 2 years of working it out through movies and music. I’ve tried different positions in the room and always enjoyed the output and musicality of this subwoofer.
Current it’s paired with the following units:
- Q Acoustics Concept 40 Floorstand speakers
- Q Acoustics Concept Center speaker
- Denon AVR-X4500H 9.2 Receiver (See our review here)
- Fluance SXBP2 Bipolar surround sound speakers
With the SVS SB-2000, the SB stands for Sealed Box. There is also a ported box model called the PB-1000 and a PB-2000 Pro. In fact, there is a wide range of both PB and SB models depending on your budget.
Sealed box means there is no obvious output bass port for the air to move from. This creates a tighter sound but some would say it also limits the heft. Personally, I like tight sound.
The speaker box is also smaller without the porting on the box which was good for my lounge and helped to get ‘partner approval for purchase’ or what I call PAFP. When you say it phonetically it sounds a little like pafffpf, which is how it sounds when my wife laughs at my attempt to sneak another HiFi audio or home theatre purchase past her.
SVS SB-2000 Image Gallery
SVS-SB2000 for Movies
There is no doubt the strongest reason to buy a quality subwoofer is for massive, quality movie bottom end. Not just bass to make the explosions provide real physical impact or the deep plummeting sine wave moments like the bass wave on the intro battle scene to The Lord of the Rings – Fellowship of the Ring OR the Republic ship arrival moments at the beginning of The Last Jedi – no, not just those but yes it handles those very very well.
The other reason you want a QUALITY subwoofer is to make the music soundtrack bits amazing. Consider a soundtrack like Peaky Blinders (Netflix) or the moment in Collateral (2004) when Shadow of the Sun – Audioslave kicks in. These are also the moments that make a good subwoofer earn its keep.
Bass performance for special effects
I have a great belief that music should be felt, not just heard. While the original premise for the belief related to emotions – how quality HiFi can make you feel something – it also most certainly relates to physically feeling in this instance.
If you want to rattle your windows a little you can get the SB-2000 up high enough to make it happen. If you want to move pictures off the wall then you might need the SB-4000 model. What I am saying is, if you have a typical sized house or HiFi room then this will give you all the bass you need. If you’re a bass-head then you could certainly pair two units and have them balanced across the room. Personally, I think you need the right room set up to make that worth it.
I certainly would not put the volume up on this to try to create a picture shaking event. All you will do is ruin the quality of the audio. In fact, if you run Audessy in your set up you might be surprised to find that Audyssey thinks your Subwoofer shouldn’t be as loud as you think it should be.
I digress. What I’m saying is the bass in the SB-2000 is big enough to feel. It’s not over the top so if you want over the top, annoy your neighbours’ stuff, then you need to upgrade.
I find the bass for movie special effects just perfect. It’s sonic, you can feel it but it doesn’t take over the soundtrack or create an artificial, inflated feeling to the bass. It keeps it right in the sweet spot for special effect soundtracks and it sits balanced with the other speakers in the home theatre arrangement. The SPL (Sound Pressure Level) is perfect for my relatively well-sized living room.
It’s tight and impactful without being fluffy. There is nothing worse than bass or a subwoofer that sounds like it’s coming through cardboard; no clarity and no tightness.
I should note I have the SB-2000 on the carpet on concrete. I’m pretty sure the next-door neighbours can feel the bass travel to their house through the floor but they’re a cool bunch and we don’t crank it that often.
In our last apartment, we used an Auralex Acoustics SubDude Subwoofer Acoustic Isolation Platform for a 12″velodyne subwoofer which was sufficient. I don’t feel a need for it here but would highly recommend it for anyone in a flat, condo or anywhere that has wood flooring or similar.
Your neighbours will appreciate it and your sound will be much better.
Bass performance for movie soundtracks
For some context, I have to say historically I’ve never really liked the Sony sound signature in headphones or stereo. As a headphones audiophile I just feel the bass is sculpted and inflated unnaturally. This opinion might change as they grow but my point is I find so many audio manufacturers get the bass wrong. With the SVS SB-2000 that is not the case. Somehow SVS have managed to build a subwoofer that not only creates impact for special effects but also creates musical, mellifluous and melodious soundtracks…with tight punch.
I’ve mentioned a couple of movie moments above but I suggest you try anything you love dearly. If you are keen on Guy Ritchie films, James Bond or anything similar you’ll love how the SB-2000 treats the soundtrack.
It’s just delightful, really.
SVS-SB2000 for Music (HiFi)
This is an interesting one in the audiophile world. Some believe a good subwoofer can elevate your music listening experience and some believe it creates an artificially altered sound, not one you would hear in a real listening environment.
As someone who has spent a lot of time playing music live, recording in recording studios, and subsequently spent a lot of time mixing and mastering music I can tell you when you’re sitting next to an Ampeg bass stack you feel it, its real, and this is true with the SB-2000.
There are times I feel the bass is just too much so I change to pure input on my Denon amp to only use the Q Acoustics Concept 40 floorstanding speakers – which are quite capable. However, this doesn’t mean the SVS subwoofer is unmusical. I find it comes down to two key things:
- Quality of recorded source
- Style of music
- How I am listening to it – where I am physically
If I am sitting listening to the stereo in a good, seated position, with the right music playing then having the SB-2000 in the mix can be sonically wonderful. Songs like Stevie Ray Vaughan’s – Tin Pan Alley get a real boost. As does anything Arctic Monkeys, Pink Floyd, Damien Rice or similar.
London Grammar, X Ambassadors, 21 Pilots all sound punchy as all get out. Really, it compliments pretty much everything. You can feel right to the bottom of recordings – places you’ve never heard before in your music.
If I am moving around the house then having any Subwoofer going is wasted. Because the bass is non-directional all you’ll hear is the bass following you around so I recommend you don’t do it.
Jazz and acoustic music can be really lifted from the audio feeling I mentioned about to also include the physical feeling as well = utopia. Live in Paris from Diana Krall, wow that kick drum and double bass.
The SVS SB-2000 has a metal grill. For a person with kids, this is a big deal. Because this thing is on the floor it’s prone to balls, feet, stuffies and all sorts being hurtled at it (always an accident, of course!). The metal grill really helps protect the speaker cone from any damage.
Controls on the box include Volume, Phase and Crossover (which I have set to LFE from the Denon amp)
The standby power usage is a respectably low .5 watts which means I don’t feel bad leaving it on standby. My Velodyne subwoofer was not so good.
Size is a general square. Around 15 inches (38 cms) all around. It’s a very attractive subwoofer as subwoofers go.
SVS SB-2000 Specs
|Power handling||500W RMS (1100 Watts peak power)|
|Standby power usage||.5 watts|
|Amplifier||Sledge STA-500D DSP Amp|
|Weight||35lbs (15.9 kgs)|
|Size (Dimensions)||14.6″ (H) x 14.2″ x (W) 15.4″ x (D)|
|Available FInishes||Piano Gloss and Black Ash|
If it hasn’t been apparent from my sidetracked ramblings in this SVS SB-2000 review, the SVS SB-2000 subwoofer is a winner on all fronts. It’s musical, makes movies go boom and the build quality on these units is just superb.
I went with the Piano Gloss black as it’s a perfect match for my Q Acoustics Concept 40s.
One of the coolest tools they have is the Merlin speaker matching tool. Check that out: https://www.svsound.com/pages/merlin
It’s big without being overbearing, it’s sensitive without losing its tight grip on things and it looks good in any lounge configuration.
You can buy it in pairs if you prefer, but I’m happy with one to complement and enhance all my audio needs.
It’s for all these reasons, after 2 years, I couldn’t recommend it enough. Definitely look at the newer SB-2000 Pro which comes with a bit more power and a smartphone app to help control your DSP.
Questions? Drop them, like a sine wave, in the comments section here.
This post was last updated on 2020-11-02 / Some images from Amazon Product API & some links may be affiliate links which may earn us a commission from purchases.