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Old 15th September 2011, 10:45 PM   #1
Rick R is offline Rick R  United States
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Default Fostex FE203EN-S drivers in Sachiko cabinet – YES!

I bought my Sachiko speakers (frugal-horn.com design) from a guy who made them a couple of years ago for his own use. They had the Fostex FE206E drivers with phase plugs. I have had them in my garage system for a few months and thought they sounded pretty good. After learning that there was a new limited offering of Special FE203EN-S drivers, I bought a pair to try in the Sachiko’s.

The FE203’s got around 400 – 500 hours of break in while installed in a shelving unit, run 24 hours a day on various FM stations at varied volumes.

I replaced only the Fostex FE206E original drivers and their wiring and used the wiring that came with the new drivers. No other changes in the system or set up. System is a Music Hall CD player and James Burgess 45 SET amps with volume controls. This is my garage system with speakers about 7 feet apart and listening position about 7 feet from the speakers.

I liked the sound of the FE206-E, until I heard the new driver. The FE203EN-S is substantially better in all ways. I was pleased with the Sachiko’s before, now I am thrilled with them. We have all read those reviews that say “a veil was lifted … I find myself listening to the whole piece, rather than just that small segment I usually use for comparison … my system has been awakened, etc. “. Yeah, that’s what happened with these new drivers.

The bass is way better, tighter and more articulate. A double bass sounds like it is made of wood, if you know what I mean, and the slam from the kick drum on Hotel California on the Eagles Hell freezes over CD is very satisfying. The midrange is more detailed, smoother, imaging is more three dimensional and images are more solid. I can hear the detail and grit is certain female voices without any edginess. The overall tone is slightly sweeter and warmer. The highs are a cleaner and clearer. Overall the sound is smoother, yet more detailed and a bit more relaxed sounding.

Shortcomings that I hear include a small bit of lingering midrange shouty-ness(this could be coming from my less that wonderful room acoustics and set up), but nothing I can’t live with, and I would like more extended and crystalline highs.

As they sit now, I certainly feel the bass is terrific and satisfying to me. The midrange is fabulous. The only thing I might consider is adding super tweeters to give that bell like tone that is missing. I am sure lots of folks would be happy with these speakers just as they are.

So, I heartily recommend the Fostex FE203EN-S as a replacement for the FE206E in the Sachiko cabinets.

Last edited by Rick R; 15th September 2011 at 11:06 PM.
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Old 15th September 2011, 10:55 PM   #2
planet10 is offline planet10  Canada
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Location: Victoria, BC, NA, Sol III
Are the old drivers FE206e or FE206eN (they will have spots & phase plugs (with spots on them too))? They are too old to be FE206En (current version of the stock driver)

Good to hear these are working out. If you can get further out from them, you'll likely be rewarded. Recommended minimum distance to get the mouth-driver-mouth arrangement to integrate is about 3m.

And pictures please!

community sites t-linespeakers.org, frugal-horn.com, frugal-phile.com ........ commercial site planet10-HiFi
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Old 15th September 2011, 11:15 PM   #3
Rick R is offline Rick R  United States
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Thanks for asking about the drivers, they are, in fact, FE206E drivers with phase plugs. I have gone back and edited my posts to reflect that fact.

I will try the longer listening distance.
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