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Frequently Asked Questions

Bullet Do you ship outside of the UK?
Bullet Can I have a custom bass shaker package?
Bullet What is a ButtKicker?
Bullet What is tactile sound?
Bullet Can I connect a bass shaker to a mixer?
Bullet Why are ButtKicker's cheaper in the USA?
Bullet BK Gamer - Can I still use my surround sound?
Bullet Can I use a sub-woofer and a bass shaker together?
Bullet Will my neighbours hear vibrations?
Bullet USB headphones with Gamer for PC
Bullet Do you offer SimVibe packages?
Bullet Why does my Quake10B have a metallic smell?

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Do you ship outside of the UK?


Yes - we ship to almost every country in the World. Simply create your shopping cart, then input your address to obtain a shipping quote. If you have any problems, please contact us.





Can I have a custom bass shaker package?


Yes indeed! We are the experts when it comes to putting together custom packages. Please contact us for further details, including as much detail as you can.





What is tactile sound?


Tactile Sound is the sensation of sound transmitted directly to the human body by contact, rather than by sound waves through the ears. For example, when you stand on a train platform you can feel the train approaching as well as hearing it. Explosions, crashes, sonic booms, and thunder are all normally felt in addition to being heard. Tactile sound is also present in the vibratory signature of musical instruments, your automobile, in aircraft, someone walking across the floor or slamming a door, even the vibration from the compressor in your refrigerator. When we talk we experience our voice in a tactile format, if we are in intimate contact with a talking individual, we can feel their voice. Besides air pressure, tactile sound can be conducted through ground motion. Tactile sound can also be transmitted through water, for example in a swimming pool or hot tub.

In addition to being produced naturally, tactile sound can be produced by a transducer in the same way that sound can be produced through a loudspeaker. Tactile sound has been used by the military for flight and tank simulators, for rides in amusement parks, medical research musical tactile massage, home cinema, computer games, car audio, dance floors, water beds, patio decks and for musical performance as tactile feedback for drummers and other musicians. It has even been used recently to promote weight loss, improve muscle tone and improve blood circulation by a resistance training company.

Various designs for tactile transducers have been presented since the 1960's, most of which fall under the "shaker" category. Shakers create a vigorous vibration by moving a mass (usually a magnet) which is bolted to a final mass (like a chair or couch). A simple example of this is the vibration available on a common mobile phone. Another way of producing tactile sound uses "linear actuators", which move furniture (usually up and down), rather than shaking it. The main advantage of linear actuators is that they deliver actual motion (ground excursion), not just vibration.

Recently, tactile sound transducers have evolved to include higher frequencies and produce higher fidelity. The human tactile frequency range is from 1 Hz, very low frequency such as earthquakes, up to 5 kHz in some hearing impaired individuals. For most individuals 2 to 3 kHz is the upper threshold for tactile reception.

These newer devices must have higher resolution than previous "shakers" to produce these frequencies. Most humans have tactile resolution to 2 Hz which is the smallest change in frequency that can be perceived. The primary use for this extended bandwidth is to reproduce the vibratory signature for musical instruments such as violins, guitars, the human voice or sound effects in movies (for example, the Speeders in Star Wars). Also higher frequencies may be used to augment hearing through bone conduction, a consideration for people who have compromised their hearing from exposure to loud music.

Tactile sound is often used to increase the realism of an artificial environment. For example, mounting a tactile sound transducer in a chair or couch in a home cinema setup can give more of a sense of "being there". For such use, the transducer is often connected to the LFE channel of an A/V receiver. Tactile sound is often used in combination with a subwoofer so that low frequencies can be both felt and heard.

To facilitate broadband tactile sound, all channels are summed to provide a full range signal to the transducer amplifier. Graphic equalizers can also be used to further modify the effect.

For musical performance, drummers will often use a tactile sound transducer mounted on their drum stool so they can "feel" themselves playing, rather than using a more conventional stage monitor. The size and power of a stage monitor required to adequately reproduce low frequency drum sounds would be expensive and hard to transport, while a tactile sound transducer can be rather small and require much less power to get the job done.

 

 

 

 





Can I connect a bass shaker to a mixer?


The short answer is yes, providing you have a suitable line-out facility and a compatible power amplifier. As each set-up is slightly different, please contact us if you would like further information as to how you should connect your bass shaker system.





Why are ButtKicker's cheaper in the USA?


We are fully aware that ButtKicker products appear to be cheaper in the USA than in the UK and Europe. However, here are a few things for you to consider......................

  • The USA is the "home market" and subsequently does not require a third-party distributor or agent to provide the product and customer support.  This allows USA resellers to buy direct from the manufacturer.
  • The Dollar exchange rate has been volatile to say the least - this impacts a great deal on product prices.
  • Shipping charges have increased dramatically over the last year or two (mainly due to added fuel and security costs) and adds a significant amount to the final price.
  • When the products arrive in the UK, further charges are levied in the form of import duty, VAT, handling charges and delivery to destination. When all this is added up, the increase is substantial in relation to the initial cost of the goods (this is often the hidden cost that most people only find out about when the item arrives on their doorstep).
  • Shockingly, we also have to make some kind of profit in order to survive, so naturally we whack on as much as we can get away with to keep the kids in private education - just kidding!!!!
  • Apart from the reasons mentioned above, market forces tend to dictate the end price for any product and our prices are competitive with other European countries.

An important note regarding warranty:
ButtKicker products purchased from outside the UK will have no warranty support from the UK distributors. Should any product develop a fault, you would have to return it to the seller at your own cost.
 





BK Gamer - Can I still use my surround sound?


Yes! The ButtKicker Gamer comes with splitter cables that enable you to send an analogue audio output from your AV unit (sub out preferred) to the Gamer amplifier. If no audio output is available directly from your surround system, you can take the audio from the TV.





Can I use a sub-woofer and a bass shaker together?


A bass shaker amplifier takes a feed from the sub-bass output and works alongside the sub-woofer, so there are no problems connecting both to work simultaneously.





Will my neighbours hear vibrations?


 

It is very difficult to say whether or not the transfer of vibration will be experienced by your neighbours - there are so many variables to consider.
Firstly, it depends on the product used and it's installation, then the construction of any party walls and flooring come into play . Solid walls and flooring made from concrete will be less likely to conduct any vibration than a thin plaster board wall and hollow flooring.

The volume setting is also a factor. There's a fair chance that your neighbours will hear a set of conventional speakers if they're on full blast, but less likely if you set them at a reasonable level and the same applies to any bass shaker, although there is no audible sound as such.

Using a tactile unit in conjuction with a conventional speaker system allows you to reduce the volume level of your sub and still feel all the bass (and more) you want.  Rubber isolators should also be used to retain the effect within any seating and reduce the amount of  tactile transfer into flooring.

Conventional speakers actually 'move' the air to transfer the sound which is unavoidable, so by using a ButtKicker, it  can actually be more 'neighbour  friendly'.

 





USB headphones with Gamer for PC


If you are running Windows PC software from V7 onwards, it is possible to output both USB and analogue audio at the same time. 

The following link shows how to assign the default audio device in Windows 7 and 8.1 to enable this function.
positek.net/windows-8-1-assigning-default-audio-devices/ 

Older versions of Windows for PC would not allow you to output USB and analogue audio simultaneaously and subsequently would not work with the Gamer (or any product that required an analogue audio signal) without installing a piece of third party software called VAC (Virtual Audio Cable). 
If you have an older Windows version (pre-Windows 7), you can download  the "Virtual Audio Cable" software to fix this issue - so you can use your USB headphones and ButtKicker at the same time!

Information including free trial dowload and full version download can be found here:
http://software.muzychenko.net/eng/vac.htm

Alternatively, another free trial download is available here:
http://download.cnet.com/Virtual-Audio-Cable/3000-2168_4-10067766.html
 
*It is recommended you change the overflow/underflow buffer setting to 100 (default is 500) to reduce any time lag.

 





Do you offer SimVibe packages?


Yes - you can find our standard SimVibe package here.

We also offer a range of custom packages specially configured and optimised for SimVibe software users. There are many different options so to get the right one for you, please contact us for more information and we'll be happy to help.





Why does my Quake10B have a metallic smell?


New Q10B units give off a "metallic" odour. This is perfectly normal and is simply the lubricant  used to "break in" the tube and other mechanisms.






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