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Old 26th December 2004, 07:39 PM   #1
cowanrg is offline cowanrg  United States
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Default DIY Design Contest?

Hello everyone! I have a (hopefully) good idea for a contest. Being that it's almost the new year, many of us will be making new year's resolutions to finish some of the projects we've had hanging around for the past year, myself included.

So, I had an idea. The general idea is a contest that participants pay an "entry" fee to enter their procuts into the contest. There will be numerous categories. The contest lasts for one complete year. At the end of the contest, all DIYAudio members will be allowed to vote for their favorite designs. Half of the proceeds would go to DIYAudio.com as a donation, and other half would be cash prizes for the winners. There would be prizes not only in each category, but also a grand prize as well. If enough people join up, this could be a substantial prize (and contribution to DIYAudio), considering it runs for a year.

If we go ahead with this, I would like the contest to focus on creativity and "outside the box" thinking. There are many designs on this forum that are completely original and very classy. This is what I would be looking for, but anyone would be allowed to enter (with the right price of course), and its up to the general public of DIYAudio who wins.

It's just a way of pushing the design envelope even further in the DIY community. The basic categories I planned out are:

Amps (solid state and tube)
Pre-Amps (both tube and solid state)
Speakers (all types)
Sources (transports, cd players, TT, etc)
Other (crossovers, anything that doesn't fit elsewhere)

Then, in addition to categories, there would be special awards in each category. For amps, most overkill design, and most simplistic design. These would be smaller prizes, but would reward not the BEST design, but one that should certainly be recognized.

Because we cannot audition all this stuff, the contest would be based on design only. So, voting would be limited not to the circuit, but the actual execution of the design. So, if somoene wants to build a gainclone with normal parts, some might think this is a mediocre amp, BUT, if its done VERY well, then it counts as great design.

So, that is the idea. Nothing would be horribly complex to figure out, just the voting could be a bit tricky to make sure no one double-votes, etc... But that doesnt need to be figured out until next year. For now, we could have submissions and payments posted on a webpage (I can do that), and show how much the awards would be.

So, if the entry price was $10 per entry, and there were 10 entries into the amps category, the winner would get $50, and DIYaudio would get $50.

Let me know if anyone is interested, or if anyone has any ideas. But I would like to start this sometime in January so we can start getting entries. I would like to see 100 or more entries. That could be a sizeable donation to the forum!

If any of the moderators have a problem with this, let me know. I'm not planning on taking any profit from this at all, unless one of my designs wins of course. But if I count the votes, I would be exempt of course...
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Old 27th December 2004, 03:17 AM   #2
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Hm, interesting. *Starts drawing patterns to cast to well out-do the competettion*

Tim
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Old 27th December 2004, 03:21 AM   #3
cowanrg is offline cowanrg  United States
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well i think at this point, you could win $5 by spending $10. i think we need some more involvement!
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Old 27th December 2004, 07:24 AM   #4
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I think it's a great idea!

Have you emailed any of the mods about this? Maybe they haven't seen this thread yet.
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Old 27th December 2004, 01:07 PM   #5
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Sounds like a good idea to me. I'll point it out to the rest of the mod crew...

Cheers,
Bas
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Old 27th December 2004, 02:00 PM   #6
SY is offline SY  United States
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I like it! Maybe have two categories, speakers and electronics?
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Old 27th December 2004, 02:22 PM   #7
SY is offline SY  United States
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Disclaimers and caveats: diyAudio.com would not own, nor be assigned any right other than publication, nor be responsible for the suitability and/or safety of any of the submitted designs.

What that means is:

We'll put 'em up here, photos and schematics, run the 'election,' and award the prizes based on member votes.

If people like your design, there will be variants popping up like weeds after a rain. That delights some people and upsets others. But be aware, it WILL happen.

If you build a design and it blows up in your face or just plain doesn't work, don't blame us, we have no way of production-testing every entry. Or any entry, for that matter.
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Old 27th December 2004, 02:26 PM   #8
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Talking reading

SY,
you might have overread it, but there ARE more categories already!



Uli

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Old 27th December 2004, 02:30 PM   #9
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Well maybe SY was suggesting they cut down on categories.


My suggestion would be for to cut down on categories. Something like.....

Sources
Amplification/Attenuation/Electronics
Transducers



But the possibility of more prizes...(category independant)
like

best looking
best innovation

and maybe a consolation prize for the worst project.
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Old 27th December 2004, 05:41 PM   #10
cowanrg is offline cowanrg  United States
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yeah, i guess it all just depends on how many entries there are.

the reason behind seperating some out are that there are certain design principles that done apply to certain things. for instance, a pre-amp can be a very mechanical piece. it can have many moving parts, lights, knobs, etc... whereas an amp can be VERY plain and simple and have almost NOTHING to it, but both can be great designs in their own right. i just kinda wanted to compare apples to apples.

BUT, i would be up for this... having three categories, Amps/preamps, speakers (anything that "makes sound", subs, etc...), and other. the reason i would exclude "other" is that it might be a completely original piece that wouldnt fit in with amps. for instance, if someone makes a remote controlled, self calibrating active EQ, that is amazing, BUT, its very different from a slick amplifier. how do you vote which is better?

but, maybe im just thinking too hard about it. i agree that there should at least be a few "special" prizes. there will most definately be a "best overall" prize, most overkill (since i thought of it, i want this award ), and smallest simplest design.

i like the idea of worst prize actually. when i first read it, i thought it was a bad idea. BUT, if a few people start "trying" for that prize, you can get some amazingly bad projects that could be VERY neat! (think of my cardboard box gainclone...). i would like to see that.should we exclude the video guys? should we just give them a special category, because to this date ive seen nothing from them that even remotely looks commercial, or really entails anything beyond very basic "form follows function".

SO, we need to decide on categories, special prizes, and how this will be posted. it would be GREAT if we could have a sticky in all forums. Im not sure how diyaudio wants to help out here, but the more they advertise and promote this contest, the more money they get... so, its in their best interest. we would of course need the standard disclaimer (as SY mentioned), and a way to host pictures of designs, or at least a common place to go to look at designs. im sure there are several of us with free webspace (myself included). if we had three categories, someone could be responsible for hosting one category.

but anyways, i really would like to get this moving by the first of the year, or thereabouts. any help that the moderators could provide would be AWESOME! email me personally if you want to set some of this stuff up.

also, we would need to figure out a entry free. i think $10 is nice, $15 would be good too. anything above that and i think people would be turned away. $5 is too low, prizes wont be very high. so, my vote is for $10 - $15.
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