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Old 17th September 2010, 03:48 AM   #1
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Winnipeg
Default First timer - desperately confused with the options...

Hello All. I am very tempted to build a full-range speaker enclosure but I am finding all the options rather overwhelming... Based on initial reading:

1) Speaker choice? I've been thinking a Fostex FE206en...the Fostex 208 Sigmas also look interesting but appear to be a lot more expensive than the 206. Am I better off staying with the 206s?

2) The enclosure options are making my head spin! Characteristics I'd be looking for:
- I'd be looking for something that offers decent bass. I don't have good high frequency hearing so I am not overly concerned with upper-range frequencies.
- Easy to build?
- Versatile: I have an eclectic music taste - ideally looking for something that could work for Bach to James Brown to Black Sabbath to Hip Hop.
- Medium sized room - about 16'x16' with 8' high ceilings.

3) The intent is to feed the speakers with a low-wattage (3.5w) tube amplifier.

My general dilemma is that there are so many different options. Would appreciate it if someone can help me get focused into the right direction.
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Old 17th September 2010, 04:32 AM   #2
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Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Victoria, BC, NA, Sol III
Blog Entries: 5
FE206 is a good starter choice.

Having too many choices is way better than too few That's what it was like when the FR big hit me.

Start a list of potential enclosures and then start eliminating them. They really want a horn. Let me get you started:

RonHorn Dallas II
Spawn Sachiko (small room probably scratches this one)

the new Woden V-Series
HM probably has some...

community sites,, ........ commercial site planet10-HiFi
p10-hifi forum here at diyA
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Old 17th September 2010, 04:38 AM   #3
preiter is offline preiter  United States
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Are you looking to build your final, ultimate speakers right off? Or is this the start of a hobby?

How good is your woodworking?

What tools do you have access to?

How important is appearance vs. sound quality?

With that level of power, you are probably looking for >95 dB efficient. The BiB (Bigger is better) is known for good bass, easy to build and highly efficient with the right driver. They are large, but good bass with high efficiency generally demands a large box.
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Old 17th September 2010, 11:06 AM   #4
hm is offline hm  Europe
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Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: near Hamburg Germany
Default platplaas

may be this could be a solution:

Sats with sub for small rooms

or double horns like
Saxophon and
extrem good Impedanz for Tubes.

surf my HP

oh thanks Planet10
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Last edited by hm; 17th September 2010 at 11:11 AM.
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Old 17th September 2010, 05:50 PM   #5
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Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Winnipeg
Default Thanks for input

Hi Everyone, thanks for the input.

My carpentry skills aren't the greatest and I don't have much equipment, so the simpler the better.

- The Dallas 2 looks difficult to build.
- The Sachiko looks nice but possibly expensive and a labour of love? (Plus if it doesn't work well outside of big spaces then probably not worth it?)
- I like the simplicity of the BIB cabinets and that they appear to have good bass.
- The metronomes look nice and easy to build, but bass is weak?
- Can't get much info about the Woden.

So far it looks like the BIB boxes are the best bet!? The main challenge being size...

Any recommendations for where to find the best BIB plans? Or can I just use the BIB calculator spreadsheets to figure it out for myself?

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Old 17th September 2010, 06:03 PM   #6
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Winnipeg
Default Some nagging questions:

1) Should I consider the FE 166 as well, or am I better off sticking with the 206? I'm not sure what the trade-offs are between the two speakers. I'm assuming the 206 has better bass.

2) Are Fostex's website box plans any good? Or am I better off sticking with a home designed BIB?
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Old 17th September 2010, 06:46 PM   #7
chrisb is offline chrisb  Canada
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Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: victoria BC
a few quick thoughts:

It's hard to get the fullest level of wide-band performance and finesse from drivers such as 126/166/206 / AudioNirvana / Lowther, etc., without enclosures as elaborate as any of the numerous BLH / Olsen style manifold designs mentioned yet or to follow, and the accompanying build complexity

Math for BIB has already been done for many popular drivers (see Jeff's site for dimensions and build suggestions)

Bigger Is Better 'BIB' Cabinet Dimensions - ZillaSpeak

much the same for Metronome:

The Metronome

Some of the Fostex larger BLH designs work quite well enough, but are at least as time consuming a build as any others under consideration. The simpler sealed/BR or "hybrid" enclosures, not so much performance-wise.

Woden designs continue to evolve, and as you might imagine, one guy can only accomplish so much. Being more fastidious and particular about optimizing enclosures to driver T/S parameters than many of us, (speak for yurself, Chris ) the recent revamping of Fostex line has rendered some of his designs "obsolete", while requiring revisiting / remodeling of others.


for a room your size, I'd be surprised if the FE166 didn't work quite well enough

There will of course be those who opine that no single driver/FR system can do it all (particularly HT or metal, etc.) and as my listening habits have "matured", I'm not one to argue that point. But it's pretty easy to supplement any of these FR speakers with as many powered woofers as needed.
on hiatus

Last edited by chrisb; 17th September 2010 at 06:59 PM.
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Old 17th September 2010, 07:56 PM   #8
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Location: New York
Not sure anyone has built a BIB for the new 206en. Try the BIB Calculator and see what you get... I bet a few here will check your math, including me, so you get something really worthwhile. If you plan to put the speakers into corners BIBs are a great choice for full range drivers.
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Old 18th September 2010, 02:00 AM   #9
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Location: Winnipeg
Default A real newbie question...

What does the 'fr' refer to in the BIB calculator?
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Old 18th September 2010, 02:41 AM   #10
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Location: Winnipeg
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Hi - I tried the spreadsheet - I've assumed that Fr is referring to Fs?

See the pictures:

Click the image to open in full size.

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