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My TQWL experience with Monacor SP200X
My TQWL experience with Monacor SP200X
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Old 6th June 2010, 04:27 PM   #1
Gregje is offline Gregje  United Kingdom
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: London
Default My TQWL experience with Monacor SP200X

A few years ago I completed a TQWL design with a vintage Philips AD8082 (I believe) I used to drive it with a home brewed Triode Zen (a sometimes with the Pass Zen) amps and Pass BOZ preamp. When I relocated to another country and then again to another one my 20kg each TQWLs did not follow me. Also the box-less clones of Pass Zen and Triode Zen (the last one with lethal voltages) did not seem to be kids friendly. I got myself a very popular on the Dutch second hand market Bocama-Lafayette LA224 tube amp. For those who do not know it: It is a PP design with 2 EL84 per channel. You can get nowadays one for less than 200E on Marktplaats - De plek om Nieuwe en Tweedehands spullen te kopen en verkopen.

The amp is known for its very good quality output trannies.

I hooked Lafayette to a pair of second hand JMLab Primo speakers (hey! long life to Marktplaats - De plek om Nieuwe en Tweedehands spullen te kopen en verkopen (no they do not sponsor me if you wondered;-)) and I was reasonably happy. But the memories of my old TQWLs with the sound freed from the speakers followed me for years.

After browsing the net I have decided to give a chance to Monacor SP200X.

The design came from one of the French forums (Suite et fin du petit quart d'onde" : Haut-rendement - Cinetson - Hifi et Homecinema). I managed to glue the boxes during the last bank holiday and placed the drivers in the cabinets. I gave them about one week (2-3hrs a day) to burn in without any filters. After a few days the sound was getting better, but they still lacked the intimacy the old Philips drivers used to have. I remembered that removing the damping from the lower part of the speaker improves the intimacy, so I removed almost all of the carpet from the lower part of cabinet. Yes I was getting there, but still missing something. Yesterday, I sanded the cabinets (you can see in the pics that I did not do a good job) and painted them. Since I had a pair of vintage Philips AD8081 (mind these are not 9710!), I gave them a chance.

A miracle happened! The soundstage opened, the sensation of being at a performace appeared. Philips has also some more treble which might be an advantage given that Monacors are highs weak.

I wonder whether any of you have some experience with Monacors. And moreover has anybody experience with smaller brothers of 9710? It seems to me that my problems with Monacors have been shared with many people out there. But finding any info about projects with Philips AD8081/82 seems to be very difficult! When I upgrade the drivers to FE206 I will let you know. Though Fostex need a proper back loaded horn. Anyway I might give them a go in this cabinet.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg lafayette.JPG (181.6 KB, 446 views)
File Type: jpg monacorFront.JPG (140.3 KB, 429 views)
File Type: jpg monacorBack.JPG (116.5 KB, 413 views)
File Type: jpg cabinet1.JPG (114.3 KB, 423 views)
File Type: jpg cabinet2.JPG (94.9 KB, 417 views)
File Type: jpg ad8081.JPG (87.8 KB, 197 views)
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Old 2nd December 2010, 09:34 PM   #2
Gregje is offline Gregje  United Kingdom
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: London
Hi there,

A small update:

I have been swaping and using Philips and Monacor for some time now.

Recently, I moved the system to another (bigger room). The sitting position is much better now. Not surprisingly there is much more body to the sound.
I personally like Philips very much, but I have to admit that in the enclose which was designed for Monacor, Philips is somewhat bass shy. This becomes audible when you are listening to a grand piano.

I have decided to give also the Monacors another try.
I was positively surprized. The sounded much better than some time ago when I tried them for the first time. I guess it is partially to the fact that they have been burned in a little (but I guess not enough yet - I was not happy with them, so I haven't used them a lot) and partially to the bigger size of the listening room.

I also added small Philips tweeters which I had in my drawer. They use a 2uF capacitor.
The whole system is pretty enjoyable, but the image is not very deep and convincing.

I will continue to burn in the these speakers and will report.
Also I will try a BSC circuit. Agian you will hear my impressions.

PS. Recently I scored two Philips 9710. I will certainly buid some enclosures for them!
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