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Old 12th May 2008, 12:53 PM   #1
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Default tiny bass reflex design?

ok so i'm building a home theater. after sorting out my projection plans, i decided to put a small hidden pull-up movie screen in the mantel above my non-working fireplace. since all of a sudden i'm building a custom wooden mantel, i thought it'd be a great opportunity to sneak a hidden center channel speaker - maybe even left and right channels as well - into a classy piece of custom woodwork... ok maybe more custom than classy. anyway, i read about some really decent 2" fullrange drivers appearing on the scene and was wondering if anyone sees any problems with building a fully closed or bass-reflex enclosure into this mantel? is it simply not going to be loud enough with, say, 2 speakers per channel? is a bass-reflex going to be more trouble than it's worth, and if not, what would the drawback be?

and finally, i've never built a completed full range enclosure before now. i know a lot about electronics, but this sort of thing has always appeared as more magic than science to me. is there a book or anything out there that someone can recommend to help replace my magic wand with some hard equations or at least loose physical concepts to help my on my path?

of course, plans, recommendations, ideas... anything you can offer to help me get my instant gratification fix taken care of would be greatly appreciated.

thanks!
handsome greg
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Old 12th May 2008, 01:35 PM   #2
peufeu is offline peufeu  France
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Get Vance Dickason's book and WinISD (freeware) for your simulations.

The easiest for you to do would be to take a readymade design (a kit, or something from Zaph's site) where all the hard parts have been done already and you just have to assemble. Then, knowing the box volume, you'll probably be able to fit it where you want.

Also fitting the L/R very close to the center as you are planning will probably mess the stereo image (ie everything will be in the center). You need some distance for good separation.
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Old 12th May 2008, 02:41 PM   #3
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Cool idea but I'm not sure you'd be sonically happy. Two-inchers are real small but what's more is that "tiny bass reflex" means either (a) not much bass, or (b) more commonly, boomy, unrealistic, one-note bass.

However, maybe there's a way! You'd really have to nail the positioning.

I agree WinISD is a great start and it's free, but you can't see the calculations used (as far as I can tell). Great book which does cover calculations: Speaker Building 201: A Comprehensive Course in Speaker Design (Paperback)
by Ray Alden (Author).
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Old 12th May 2008, 08:22 PM   #4
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I have the Ray Alden book and I think it's very good.

Ray shows some small clever designs.

But for good sound you have to think outside of the small box. Trying
to get the look of those 5-1 setups on little stands etc. is going to be
frustrating in my opinion. You can upgrade the components but you can't change the physics. Someone told me that here years ago.


For those 'decorating problems' that come up, some tall and thin
cabinets with cloth grilles will help to blend.
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Old 13th May 2008, 04:40 PM   #5
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How small is small? Zaph seems to think that the 3" are overall quite a bit better than the 2". Even then you will be pressed to get down anywhere near 100 Hz with any level.

dave
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Old 13th May 2008, 05:27 PM   #6
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Earlier is was off base not addressing the mantle issue. My bad.

If there is any room either side of the mantle, there'd be much more flexibility over a built in. You may simply not like a built in.


I've built one of zaphs designs for the 3" Tangband 871s. I was never happy with it and took it down.

Those very small drivers require more juice and so then you have to think about your long range music listening plans rather than
just the home theater application.

In a bigger cabinet and depending on decor there are a lot of treatments. There was one Italian gentleman who made the mtm t-line design featured in Speakerbuilder look like -- well -- sort of like grandfather clocks. An odd comparison but the front was fluted and there was top detail which resembled the crown of a column. the drive had only a small grille that was made out of a shear material (silk I think) which is sound neutral.

Other floor standers I've seen have the oriental look with curved leg treatments and lintel over the top.

I'm cured of anything less than the Fostex four inchers and up.
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Old 13th May 2008, 08:19 PM   #7
chrisb is offline chrisb  Canada
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Quote:
Originally posted by loninappleton

I'm cured of anything less than the Fostex four inchers and up.

Granted, the FE126/127 & FX120 are excellent performers,and the latter 2 more tolerant of enclosure designs, but you might want to give the FF85K a try. They definitely need help from between 150-200HZ & up, but if you don't overdrive them, you could be quite surprised.

Dave, got pictures with the single SDX7 woofer/stands?
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Old 13th May 2008, 09:57 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by chrisb
got pictures with the single SDX7 woofer/stands?
(woofer is upside down in this pic)

dave
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