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Old 16th September 2011, 06:23 AM   #1
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Default Yet another 'help me choose a full range project' thread

Long time lurker here, apologies for another 'what should I do' thread!
I'm thinking of taking on a full range project and having read (been brainwashed?! ) by the CommonSense audio page, the FE206En driver seems a good victim.
My goals are:
- Nothing too big or crazy looking, ie. good WAF. This rules out the larger members of the Spawn family and Ron's horns.
- Good performance with Pete Millett's Engineers' Amp, or a low power SET if I ever get around to building one.
- Drivers under $250 ish a pair, and must be fairly easy to get hold of (ie. avoiding older models)

Some questions:
- Is there a better choice than the 206En without breaking the bank?
- I really like the look of the Half Chang, but don't want to mess around with the design as they were made for a different driver. Are there plans available for use with a 206En?
- Alternatively, is it more sensible to try a Half or Chili Chang with the recommended driver?
- If I made the Fostex 'recommended' enclosure, would I be disappointed?
- Are reflex enclosures *really* that much better, as CommonSense would have me believe? I'd really rather make a horn

Thanks in advance, I look forward to sharing my results with you when the time comes!
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Old 16th September 2011, 06:37 AM   #2
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The fostex enclosure is not a true horn, more a kind of connected transmission lines. I haven't heard it, i expect it should be acceptable, however I can well believe that a true horn will give a better result in the bass.
An enclosure to check out is Ron's Dallas II. Totally optimised for the fe206e, i don't expect much difference with the Fe206en but ask around.
The guy from commonsense audio doesn't believe in the work of thiele and small. Now, I like it that some people think against the general opinion, after all that attitude makes us join a Fullrange forum, however in this case I find it a lack of "commonsense"...
Alternatives: for waf friendly enclosures, also check out markaudio drivers. They will give ok bass in a smaller enclosure than a horn. Flip of the coin is that they are of much lower efficiency.

Last edited by talaerts; 16th September 2011 at 06:39 AM.
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Old 16th September 2011, 07:12 AM   #3
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I'd suggest that RonHorn Dallas II is as smallas you are going to get and get reasonable performance. And it is not that much bigger than halfChang.

I can't recommend the Fostex factory horns to anyone.

My personal perference is for smaller drivers, if we stick with FE166, Austin 166 (ignoring the deflector) is about the samesize as half chang. A little gentler on your budget.

The new FF series is very promising, but proven designs are scarce dur to their newness. So far it seems that they will work in the same or slightly smaller versions of the same boxes as the FExx7 series.

Colin in the UK is currently building a Met for FF225wk which is same as FE207e with slightly different vent. Jim Shearer did a Met for FF165wk (scott suggested that the FE167e one would work unchanged). The dat afrom these will allow me to design Demetri V2 for FF225, and a slightly smaller one for FF165. Bob Brines is doing some ML-TLs, again, IIRC, slightly smaller than FExx7 versions.

Scott is at the contemplation stage on reving the changs, but really needs to concentrate on hisPhD thesis.

The need to keep efficiency up and cost down sort of limits your driver choices. Having lived with FE166En in Victor that one is solid. Footprint about 25% deeper than half chang, but decidely taller. Very nice with SE 2A3 in my room.

A wild card would be Frugel-Horn mk3 with FE126En.

dave
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Old 16th September 2011, 07:18 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by talaerts View Post
I find it a lack of "commonsense"...
Seconded...

That brings up the option of the cast basket audio nirvanas. O just did up a fonken-style box for the AN10cf. The AN8cf is one i would like to play with, the others i have had to hand (all stamped basket) have not been inspiring. They certainly have their following thou.

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Old 16th September 2011, 07:29 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by poynterama View Post
- Good performance with Pete Millett's Engineers' Amp, or a low power SET if I ever get around to building one.
I went and checked out the engineer's amp. 20W. Ignoring the low power SET bit, that opens up a whole lot of possibilities. I usually run my ampin its 20W mode, and haven't run into anything i have any issues driving.

Following talaert's suggestion, Alpair10.2 in Pensil or other cab would not be a hardship to live with. I regularily swap in my pair of Mar-Ken10.2 and 20W in my room plays just fine.They would stretch your budget.

One of the Twin EL70 boxes would be closer and not give up a whole lot to the A10.2, but i expect that a single pr would do the job. I REALLY like my Mar-Kel70. Bass that defies what you see with your eyes.

Darcher Audio

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Old 16th September 2011, 08:26 AM   #6
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Thanks Dave and Talaerts, I wasn't expecting such quick replies!
I had originally discounted the Dallas II, but thanks to your recommendation it looks like a strong contender. The Alpair 10.2 in the Pensil is in the mix too, the construction looks considerably simpler!

I'll have to read up on the Mar-Kel and Lake District series to make an informed choice, I'll report back soon!
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Old 16th September 2011, 08:34 AM   #7
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And good luck Scott with your PhD, I'm just finishing off corrections on mine
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Old 16th September 2011, 09:38 AM   #8
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here's a BL Horn with AN10
Mohai Midget
HŲrner
http://www.visaton.de/vb/showpost.ph...&postcount=124
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Old 16th September 2011, 03:06 PM   #9
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>>> that attitude makes us join a Fullrange forum, however in this case I find it a lack of "commonsense"...

Interesting comment. I joined bc i wanted speakers with a less fatiguing sound. For me that meant eliminating the crossover at critically audible frequencies. The tradeoffs were minimal and once bitten by the full range bug itís tough to go back. Itís not a bad thing at all and can even save you money bc in many cases the drivers cost less than comparable multi-way speakers. Even tho you can plop a full ranger onto an open baffle and add bass support (which I happen to enjoy mucho) or seal em up in little cabs and also add bass support (another very good option) the FUN is in matching a driver with a cabinet and marveling at how one driver PLUS the cabinet makes so much music in your home.

Even tho CommonSense makes music the issue could be that he doesnít optimize cabinets rather provides designs that work well enough. Iím sure theyíre enjoyable. But since this is DIY, why not spend the time maximizing the potential of each driver for each individual room. This way we each have something a little special. Everyone learns in the process as our hobby climbs to greater levels of refinement.

Fostex boxes were a good start but could sound hollow (the one I built did). More refined back horns for the same driver donít sound hollow at all. In fact they sound robust, dynamic and clean.

The size driver youíre considering has the potential to provide excellent dynamics and enjoyment. Putting them into CSA box will allow them to play but not at their potential. You could consider, for the time being, since you are not one of the folks who designs and builds cabinets, to put them into something inexpensive and easy, like a ported box that we can help you optimize and then as newer, better designs pop up, build something else. Iíd predict once you build something yourself it wonít be your last project.

http://diyaudioprojects.com/Gallery/...oaded-Horn.jpg

http://gallery.audioasylum.com/cgi/g...eaker_004.jpg_

http://usr.audioasylum.com/images/0/7458/Double_BEN.jpg

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_ZVgJtItVgn...n-6AS7-SET.jpg

http://www.soundscapehifi.com/images...-horn-ben4.jpg
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Old 16th September 2011, 07:23 PM   #10
chrisb is offline chrisb  Canada
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poynterama:

"my name is XXXXX and I'm a speaker-holic" - almost any combination of DIY enclosure design and power from 3-4W on up can make pleasant enough music, or "music-like sound" for a daily fix, and even though we all possess the same hearing mechanisms, it's not always easy to predict which ingredients will activate the receptors in our "aural matrix" (wooh, flash-back to Prof Gizmo)


Unless you're very hard of hearing or need to fill a huge space, 20 "real" watts and wide-band drivers with sensitivity in the range of 88-90 can be very satisfying.

Since this is the "full-range / wide-band" section of DIY Audio, and there are very few brick 'n mortor retailers demoing (affordable) products in this niche, unless you " know a guy who knows a guy who has a pair of those funny speakers", sooner or later you'll need to take a leap of faith on selection of enclosures / drivers.

There are a few very cliched boiler-plate questions that are always worth visiting before ticking boxes on the decision tree - priority mine, and since you've already answered the power question, I'll omit that, and condense some

1) room size / placement constraints? a college dorm or basement bedroom is not the best venue for a pair of dual mouth BLH for 8" & super-tweeters

2) type of music / listening habits? how complex and loud, and listening distance

singer-songwriter/ chix and geetarz at conversational levels is quite different than Pantera, Mahler / Toscanini / Italian opera (take your pick of dense/complex etc genres) at "realistic" concert levels

3) WAF / aesthetics? for some of us with possibly only one available / suitable space this could be number 1 on the list
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Last edited by chrisb; 16th September 2011 at 07:25 PM.
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