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Old 24th January 2010, 09:16 PM   #1
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Jan 2010
Default Can I get some direction?

I've tried searching to see what direction has been provided to *absolute* neophytes, but either neophytes don't come here, or I am using bad search terms. Please forgive me if there are already a million answers to my request!

All that said, I really want to get in to DIY audio, and more generally in to a real understanding of audio equipment. I've found some purported "how to" sites for beginners, but they generally assume a level of technical knowledge that I don't have.

So, broadly, I'd just like to be pointed in the direction of a nice primer for neophytes. I don't even know what I need to know, so I can't give more direction than that. My long-term goals are to be able to put together my own amp, build a speaker box of reasonable quality, and basically be able to speak to people who know what they're talking about without making a fool of myself.

Thanks in advance for the help!
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Old 24th January 2010, 10:14 PM   #2
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Join Date: Nov 2008
Hello fellow neophyte. Well, not exactly, I was a neophyte four years ago.

Tony Gee; is a great starting point for speakers. He will also give you great insight into the pro's of spending more money on the crossover parts then any other part of a speaker. Duelund and Mundorf are almost mandatory for the critical components. Search 'troelsgravesen' on the web for more speaker stuff. Building your own speakers is fun, easy, and easily outperforms many store bought stuff at a fraction of the price. One of the all time greats is the ProAc Responce 2.5 clone's. Search the web.

I hope you still have a lot of vinyl, or are willing to buy some. I have an EMM Labs CDSAse CD/SACD player (one of the best), and it can't come close to an LP setup. I hope I don't get scolded for that statement.

Search Pass Labs, or Burning Amp for amp building. If you are not up to that, go to AudioGon and buy a used tube integrated amp.

Many other's will give you better advice, but that is a good starting point.
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Old 24th January 2010, 10:26 PM   #3
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Location: Near Vancouver
Start with one subject and work outward from that. Speakers may be the easiest place to begin. Go to "How stuff works" for the basics and then google from there.

Start here and look at the headings starting part way down the page. Welcome aboard the good ship DIY.
HowStuffWorks "Search"
planet10 needs your help:
Let's help Ruth and Dave
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Old 25th January 2010, 12:16 AM   #4
This speaker DIY thing, it's pretty addicting!
diyAudio Member
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Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Bismarck, ND
I feel your pain...
I visit three forums regularly. I don't know if it's OK to post the names of them here, so PM me and I'll give you the names of the other two. Between the three forums' experienced/"smart" members and other folks asking questions, most get answered.
Other than that, a good way to start with an amp might be to purchase one through or and ask questions as you go along. A lot of members have built one of these and know a lot about them. Do the same with a proven design in speakers.
I've built a couple amps, several sets of speakers, and a repaired a few receivers with the help of forum members.
Jolida SJ502A, Squeezebox Touch, Paul Carmody's Sunflowers, Jeff Bagby's Continuums; Planet 10 HiFi's MarkAudio A 7.3 Frugalhorns and MarkAudio CHP-70s, Bjorn's PS95 TABAQs
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Old 25th January 2010, 12:50 AM   #5
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Default Thanks guys!

Thanks so much -- I have some idea of where to go, now!
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Old 25th January 2010, 12:56 AM   #6
dukep is offline dukep  United States
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: North Carolina
Default getting started

Yeah, some of this overshoot my head, and I've been at it since '85.

Speakers are of primary importance, and yet easy to start with. Check out kits available at,, and perhaps even There is a wide variety and cost options (I've been wanting a pair of Seas Thor's, but....), how much boom- tinkle do you want.

Amps are wide ranging, but the chipamp types are relatively simple and bullet proof. I have one version, but the others are also good. Look for good documentation.

all the best
Duke ~

Last edited by dukep; 25th January 2010 at 01:02 AM.
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Old 25th January 2010, 01:00 AM   #7
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Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Burlington
Start with a for a beginner amp... There are step by steps which make it easy for someone for with no experience. Also endless aide available on the chipamp forums.
Wherever you go there you are.
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Old 25th January 2010, 01:18 AM   #8
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Western Sydney
check ou beginners articles here:
Elliott Sound Products - The Audio Pages (Main Index)
Impedance varies with frequency, use impedance plots of your drivers and make crossover calculations using the actual impedance of the driver at the crossover frequency
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Old 25th January 2010, 09:49 PM   #9
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thanks for the help, everyone. I think I'm going to try my hand at the ProAc Responce 2.5 clone as my first project! I'll keep everyone posted on how badly it comes out .
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