Processing signals into BASSBOSS speakers

Should I process signals going into my BASSBOSS speakers?

Q: Can I use a DBX Drive Rack, or other signal processing gear in my BASSBOSS signal chain?

A: All BASSBOSS subs already have all the processing built in, so they don't need, and should not have, any additional processing added to the signal chain. If you need an external processor to control your non BASSBOSS tops, you could run the signal through a processor BUT without any filters on the outputs to the BASSBOSS sub. That way you could control their level without compromising their response and use the outputs for the tops to do what you need to do to them. (I'd recommend spending the cost of the external processor on a better loudspeaker, though.) Next question is, what do you need to do? And why do you need to do it?  

The BASSBOSS tops all have the necessary high-pass filters included and are always coherent with any of our subwoofers when used together.  When combining different brands of subs and tops, inevitably the challenge is to get the subs and tops coherently in-phase. (That's often also a challenge when combining the same brand of subs and tops, but that's a different discussion...)  

Bear in mind that just because your filter frequencies match (Eg: 100Hz High-pass and 100Hz Low-pass,) that doesn't mean that the speakers are going to be coherently in-phase. The filter frequencies are only one of a large number of variables that have to be taken into account. A partial list includes: The filter slope, (18, 24, 36, 48dB/octave,)  the filter form, (Butterworth, Linkwitz-Riley, etc.,) Equalization filter delay, (not inserted time delay but the filter delay, essentially phase shift that is the result of EQ filters,) the influence of ancillary filters, (such as the subwoofer's high-pass filter,) the processor latency (which is different from one DSP to another and from one sampling rate to another,) and, often forgotten, the inertia of the cone and resonant system as a whole.

Combining speakers that haven't had these things factored into the design and processing is not something to undertake without a measurement system and the skills to use it. Getting it wrong won't make the system completely unusable but it can result in a loss of level, a lack of impact and, in extreme cases, shorter service life for the drivers.  Whatever the case, the system almost certainly won't be optimized to the degree that it could be, or in my view, that it should be.

The true value of a system often comes down to how it makes you look to your customers and how it makes you feel. If you're confident and comfortable with the performance of your system, that's valuable. If you can get set up and packed up in record time, that's valuable. Adding more hardware and more places for things to go wrong doesn't generally make your life better...


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