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Sigberg Audio: Building a "design" subwoofer that actually sounds good

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sigbergaudio

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After a long period of various delays related both to COVID-19 and other things, we finally have all versions of this subwoofer (so both Inkognito 10 and 12, and both Satin black and Satin white) in stock, and will ship within a week of ordering! :)
 

JDragon

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I've had my Inkognito 12 for a few weeks now and have been very pleased with it. I originally bought it to replace my 15" PowerSoundAudio S1510DF but ended up connecting both just to see what it would sound like and have been so pleased with the result that I haven't been able to properly evaluate the Inkognito by itself. The PSA is getting disconnected in a few weeks to make room for some new furniture so I will be down to just the Inkognito then and will report back. I might need to get another Inkognito if bass performance suffers - having dual subs is quite addicting, and the Inkognito's form factor lets me place it where an enormous cube doesn't fit. Bonus points for the Inkognito's finish looking fabulous and luxurious. Satin black really means satin here!

This was my subwoofer's in-room response prior to the Inkognito, measured/corrected using Audyssey:

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This is with the Inkognito installed along with my old subwoofer:
1619721144965.png
 

ai1

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Sorry, this is quite out of topic but a request for Sigbergaudio expertise. The question was already discussed a bit in this thread (cf. #43-44 above). Well, building a shallow (sealed) subwoofer myself, I decided to use minidsp-pwr125 plate amplifier. Unlike hypex module, minidsp does not have vents in the backplate, and it looks like the enclosure should be vented to allow sufficient cooling of the amplifier. Unfortunately, I do not have access to machines to make vents in the amplifier backplate, implying that these should be drilled in the subwoofer back and front baffle or in the side plate.

My questions concern the “feasibility” of this solution:
  • how large should be vents? I have seen that the vents in the hypex backplate are quite small, so I expect that 5x100mm slots would do the job (PWR is 2x125w class D). Although the amplifier has its closed compartment, similarly to what is done with Incognitos, I am a bit afraid that this will compromise the “global” stiffness of the enclosure (305mm driver, 500x700x185mm dimensions with two braces between the baffles, 21mm birch plywood).
Would be happy to know your enlightened opinion on the matter.
 
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sigbergaudio

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Sorry, this is quite out of topic but a request for Sigbergaudio expertise. The question was already discussed a bit in this thread (cf. #43-44 above). Well, building a shallow (sealed) subwoofer myself, I decided to use minidsp-pwr125 plate amplifier. Unlike hypex module, minidsp does not have vents in the backplate, and it looks like the enclosure should be vented to allow sufficient cooling of the amplifier. Unfortunately, I do not have access to machines to make vents in the amplifier backplate, implying that these should be drilled in the subwoofer back and front baffle or in the side plate.

My questions concern the “feasibility” of this solution:
  • how large should be vents? I have seen that the vents in the hypex backplate are quite small, so I expect that 5x100mm slots would do the job (PWR is 2x125w class D). Although the amplifier has its closed compartment, similarly to what is done with Incognitos, I am a bit afraid that this will compromise the “global” stiffness of the enclosure (305mm driver, 500x700x185mm dimensions with two braces between the baffles, 21mm birch plywood).
Would be happy to know your enlightened opinion on the matter.

Perhaps the PWR125 is designed to function without vents, using the plate amp as a heatsink and heat transfer. Hard to say anything about the needed vents, but if you have 5x100mm below and above the plate amp, that is likely to be more than good enough.

The vents will not compromise the stiffness of the enclosure to any meaningful degree, so I wouldn't worry about that.
 
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ai1

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Perhaps the PWR125 is designed to function without vents, using the plate amp as a heatsink and heat transfer. Hard to say anything about the needed vents, but if you have 5x100mm below and above the plate amp, that is likely to be more than good enough.

The vents will not compromise the stiffness of the enclosure to any meaningful degree, so I wouldn't worry about that.
Thank you very much for the prompt answer! The icepower board of minidsp pwr is mounted with its heatsink on the oposite side. I was thinking turning it over so it touches the backplate and adding some thermal compound between the sink and the plate. Yet, dsp board may also require some cooling, and venting slots in the enclosure seems to be less hassle, I will go this way.
 
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Not a lot of updates here in a while, but all variants (Inkognito 10 & 12 in Satin white and Satin black) are in production and in stock. New product photos arrived recently as well, perhaps giving an even better impression of how these look than previous pictures. :)

Inkognito10-white3.png
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Inkognito12-black3.png
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Inkognito1012-white1.png
Inkognito1012-white2.png


Read more and purchase at https://www.sigbergaudio.no/products/dronn-101
 

deafenears

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Not a lot of updates here in a while, but all variants (Inkognito 10 & 12 in Satin white and Satin black) are in production and in stock. New product photos arrived recently as well, perhaps giving an even better impression of how these look than previous pictures. :)

View attachment 148793View attachment 148794View attachment 148795View attachment 148796View attachment 148797View attachment 148798View attachment 148799View attachment 148800

Read more and purchase at https://www.sigbergaudio.no/products/dronn-101
Beautiful...
 
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sigbergaudio

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Here's a cool example of how flexible these subwoofers are. This awesome dedicated room has two Inkognito 12 subwoofers under the coach to even out the frequency response in the room (JL Audio subs and B&W 803 D4 in the front). :cool:


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sigbergaudio

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A white Sigberg Audio Inkognito 10 has been reviewed by a Danish youtube channel for those who'd like to see a bit of video of these subwoofers. There's a lot of talking in this video (almost 40 minutes long), which doesn't make a lot of sense if you can't speak Danish, but there's a brief unboxing at ~08:50, a couple of stills between ~12:00-13:00, and some more video of it from around ~15:00. :)

This is a Bang&Olufsen oriented YouTube channel, so they're comparing it to the 4,500USD Beolab 19. The reviewer concludes that the Beolab 19 is smaller and looks better, but he'd rather buy the Inkognito as "It goes deeper, has more punch, cost less and can be hidden away from sight." :)

 

Olli

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That thing just looks too cool. I bought a budget Teufel T 4000 Flat Sub last week for my home office to go under my bed. It‘s been unfortunately disappointing in comparison to my other subs (JL E112, Rythmik F8 & F 18), despite proper DSP integration with Audiolense.

So I just couldn’t resist and pulled the trigger on an Inkognito 10 today. Although it is a bit over the top complementing my Adam artist 5 desktop monitors :)

Great website & order process, congrats on that already @sigbergaudio!
 
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sigbergaudio

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That thing just looks too cool. I bought a budget Teufel T 4000 Flat Sub last week for my home office to go under my bed. It‘s been unfortunately disappointing in comparison to my other subs (JL E112, Rythmik F8 & F 18), despite proper DSP integration with Audiolense.

So I just couldn’t resist and pulled the trigger on an Inkognito 10 today. Although it is a bit over the top complementing my Adam artist 5 desktop monitors :)

Great website & order process, congrats on that already @sigbergaudio!
Order received if you're based in Germany? Thank you for your order! I expect to ship your subwoofer early next week, will contact you via email.
 

Olli

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Order received if you're based in Germany? Thank you for your order! I expect to ship your subwoofer early next week, will contact you via email.
Sub arrived. Customs with DHL was a bit of a hassle - but the difference vs the „cheap“ wireless Teufel T4000 sub is dramatic. Built quality is excellent and FR was very good even before dialing it in with Audiolense.

It now sounds much closer to my other sub setups, but certainly you cannot compare it to 2 Rythmik F18 or 4 Rytmik F8 that I have in other rooms.

Despite the “upmarket” price - if you‘re after a non intrusive design sub that sounds great - I like it!

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sigbergaudio

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Thanks for sharing, @Olli :D

I see you are using Audiolense, which is Norwegian as well. :) Proper integration is important with subwoofers, looks like you've achieved that!
 
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sigbergaudio

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Sharing this in this thread as well, our 10D subwoofer has now been reviewed by Audioholics! :D This is not the same subwoofer as this thread is about, but it's the same design principles, the same drivers and the same amplifier modules - so the primary difference is that the Inkognito subwoofers have less power, the sound quality is the same.

1654678361453.png


 
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For those interested in expected low-end extension, here's a measurement from a setup with 2x Inkognito 10 at a Hifi show we visited this weekend. The room is about 30m^2 (323 square feet). The measurements are taken at row 1 and row 2 in the audience seats, approximately 2.5 and 3.5 meters from the system.

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Axo1989

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Here's a cool example of how flexible these subwoofers are. This awesome dedicated room has two Inkognito 12 subwoofers under the coach to even out the frequency response in the room (JL Audio subs and B&W 803 D4 in the front). :cool:

View attachment 177336View attachment 177337

That was clever. I'm not going to stop imagining two of them under my sofa now. Very nice design and development work generally also.
 
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An update on pricing: For a while now we've had all included pricing, which meant that the price on the website included shipping and any import taxes and duties. This means we've basically had fixed, world wide pricing. In practice, import taxes and duties are obviously not the same in all countries, and especially the USA often have relatively low import duties and these types of products (6-10% depending on the state as far as I've understood). This means our products have been more expensive than they could have been in the US and other countries with low import taxes.

As a result I've decided to go back to our more traditional pricing model, where foreign customers (anyone not from Norway) will pay an ex VAT/duties price. It will still include door to door shipping.

Note that prices are still fixed to NOK currency so will vary somewhat depending on currency rates, so the pricing below is based on USD currency rate as of today October 2nd 2022.

What does this mean in practice for international pricing?
  • Inkognito 10 subwoofer is now 1983USD (was 2479USD)
  • Inkognito 12 subwoofer is now 2351USD (was 2939USD)
  • 10D subwoofer is now 2645USD (was 3300USD)
  • Set of dual 10D subwoofers is now 4761USD (was 5950USD)
  • The SBS.1 active speaker is now 4629USD per pair (was 5786USD)
This includes shipping, but does not include local import taxes and duties.


Feel free to follow up (here or in a direct message) if you have any questions. :)
 
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sarumbear

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@carlob mentioned that my subwoofers looked interesting and suggested I created a thread to share a bit more information, including of course objective measurements. I'll start out with a more subjective / informative post to share a bit about the product and concept, then I'll add an additional post with some measurements. I did a lot of measurements during prototyping and designing these subwoofers, but actually lost most of it due to a hardware failure, but I plan to do new measurements soon. Did some today for the 10" version (see next post), I currently don't have a 12" version set up here, but will get back to that.

The goal of this post isn't (just) to advertise for the subwoofers, but to share a bit about the thinking behind it and and be as open as possible about the process, hopefully it's interesting to some. I have product management / development background, and wanted to use startup / Lean / Agile principles when launching this, so everything has been done at a very small scale and quite quickly. I opted for "standard" but high quality components, but are looking into custom drivers etc now.

So what so special about this product?
I know a lot of you are all about massive subwoofers and maximum SPL, this is not what this product is about. The design goal was to build a subwoofer that could easily blend into modern interiors (as in high WAF / not having to sneak it past your significant other) while providing accurate sound reproduction and realistic sound pressure (defined as 105db peak at listening position) in a normal living room. This resulted in a subwoofer with an unusual form factor (very shallow enclosure), and support for wall mounting. As it sits very low on the floor it doesn't take up much visual space, and could even be hidden below couches or other furniture. The included damping feet uses an M8 mount, which means you could theoretically replace them with furniture feet and pretend it's a coffee table. It could also be wall mounted anywhere you please, either hidden behind something or visible. There are two versions, almost identical in size, but differes in drivers and amp. I chose high quality components (Hypex and Scan-Speak), and the cabinet was designed and prototyped over several months based on driver parameters, measurements (both response and vibration tests) as well as tight collaboration with one of the best cabinet builders in Norway, who have built hundreds of custom subwoofers and loudspeakers including horns, typically massive stuff for custom home theaters. It resulted in the following two models:

INKOGNITO 12:
  • 12" scan-speak driver (down-firing / towards wall)
  • Hypex FA501 (500W rms)
  • Sealed enclosure
  • 650x540x170mm (+30mm for feet/wall mount)
  • ground plane: 23-160hz
  • typical in-room: 18-160hz
INKOGNITO 10
  • 10" scan-speak driver (down-firing / towards wall)
  • Hypex FA251 (250W rms)
  • Sealed enclosure
  • 650x540x155mm (+30mm for feet/wall mount)
  • ground plane: 25-160hz
  • typical in-room: 20-160hz
They both sound very similar and have very similar frequency responses, but the 12" version has ~3dB higher max SPL.
They are currently available in flat white and flat black. The cabinets will be built in England by a company with loudspeaker and subwoofer cabinets for B&W, KEF, REL and Meridian (among others) under the belt, while the final assembly and testing is done in Norway.

Other design considerations:
I spent the majority of listening tests using music, as my accurate reproduction of music is very important to me. Not surprisingly, this means it also works well for movies, within it's SPL capabilities of course. It has three DSP settings, one that goes deep, one with somewhat less low end lift, and also more aggressive high pass filter, which will allow you to play ~3dB louder without significant distortion. The subwoofers also have active limiters which means you don't have to worry about the drivers crashing and burning. In practice it's almost impossible to bottom out any of the subwoofers in a normal living room situation with music, but movies with lots of low end content will of course challenge the low end capability when played very loud. The assumption was that most customers in the market for something like this rarely played at extremely loud levels, and would value accurate sound and the ability to have a subwoofer that blends in visually over maximum SPL.

Room coupling
A I guess not scientifically proved idea is that having the driver facing close to a wall or floor will reduce the room node problems for that specific plane. I don't have any other proof for this than measurements and listening tests and anecdotal evidence from testers (see below). But my impression is that the fact that both the driver is very close to the floor/wall, and the entire enclosure also is very shallow, somehow reduce issues with room nodes. I get less room interaction with this subwoofer than a regular sealed subwoofer at the same position. It also works very well half way up the wall (even less nodes triggered).

Customer feedback
I've been running a test pilot program for a few months now where people could borrow a subwoofer (or even two) for free, in return for giving me feedback on the product. The general feedback is that they sound very accurate and precise with very good low end extension. A very consistent feedback is also that they integrate very well and easily with the main speakers, feeling like a natural extension of the speakers. Just the other day the 12" subwoofer was tested in a Norwegian hifi magazine receiving 5/5 stars, again commenting specifically on ease of integration. Conclusion: "The sound of Sigberg Audio Inkognito 12 is deep, powerful and impressively controlled - and it's never been easier to integrate a subwoofer with your main speakers." - Scandinavias largest hifi magazine currently has a subwoofer for testing as well, due out in September.

Check out https://www.instagram.com/sigbergaudio/ for pictures and also some behind the scenes / build picture, showing internal bracings etc.

View attachment 80573
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Next post: Measurements.
I found this post late. However, I am intrigued how do you define “sounds good”. In your post you are not talking about any subjective tests. Have I missed something?
 
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sigbergaudio

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I found this post late. However, I am intrigued how do you define “sounds good”. In your post you are not talking about any subjective tests. Have I missed something?

Hi, well ASR isn't very receptive of subjective tests, so I guess that's why I'm consciously and/or unsconsciously haven't focused a lot on that in this thread. I don't remember exactly what I was thinking when I wrote that title, but I guess I was referring to the fact to other similar subwoofers (to the extent that they exist) are typically low cost with inferior shallow mount drivers, and less than great both in performance and output. So this is to my knowledge the first subwoofer aspiring to "high end" with regards to amplifier and loudspeaker drivers as well as linearity that are also designed to blend into the interior of a normal home (aka not just be a cube). The same is somewhat true for our 10D which is very small compared to its performance.

But perhaps better to refer to third parties if you are looking for subjective impressions. You will find a subjective review (as well as measurements) at Audioholics of our 10D (basically sounds the same as the Inkognito, it's the same amplifier technology, the same driver and similar tuning):
https://www.audioholics.com/subwoofer-reviews/sigberg-10d-sub

The Inkognito 10/12 have also been reviewed by several Norwegian magazines, some of which have been translated:

I've translated brief summaries of others here https://www.sigbergaudio.no/pages/artikler-og-omtaler
 
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sarumbear

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Hi, well ASR isn't very receptive of subjective tests, so I guess that's why I'm consciously and/or unsconsciously haven't focused a lot on that in this thread. I don't remember exactly what I was thinking when I wrote that title, but I guess I was referring to the fact to other similar subwoofers (to the extent that they exist) are typically low cost with inferior shallow mount drivers, and less than great both in performance and output.
Thank you for the explanation.

I have two JBL Synthesis SSW-3 in-wall subwoofers. They are just 130mm thick. I understand the value of thin speakers.
 
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