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Old 22nd March 2006, 02:06 PM   #1
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Default Noob questions re Fostex 103e

My Fostex 103e BLH cabs are coming on well now (just the sides to fit now after I put cables in.
I have some questions though.
I know the drivers will need breaking in, what's the best way to do this, time etc?
Should I tape the basket on the drivers and will I notice? I have used my trusty router to chamfer the inside of the baffle.
The cabs are made of MDF, I know its been commented on re BLH construction (I can get MDF precision cut and supplied at work for free ). Should I treat this internally in any way or am I not likely to notice in the real world?
Oooh! and can I use phase plugs with the 103e and will I notice.
Sorry for the myriad of questions, its all a bit new to me.
Cheers
Paul
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Old 28th March 2006, 01:32 PM   #2
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Anybody? Just some opinions. PLEASE.
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Old 28th March 2006, 01:37 PM   #3
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Just playing music through them should be fine, like FM radio.

I personally use test tones from about 30 to 100 Hz. Just be carefull with the volume.

Cheers,
Gio.
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Old 28th March 2006, 03:34 PM   #4
holdent is offline holdent  Canada
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I built a pair of these just recently out of plywood. I was expecting better than I got (after earlier listening to just the raw drivers in a simple OB) and asked similar "tweaking" questions in the FullRangeDriver forum here http://fullrangedriver.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=436

I did notice what I thought was a slight difference after the drivers ran in for only 5 or 6 hours.

The Planet10 website advises against using phase plugs with the FE103E described here http://www.planet10-hifi.com/FE127.html because for the FE103E/126E/127E family; "the way that the lead-in wire is connected to the voice coil is such that it is far to easy to kill your driver during clean-up after the removal of the dustcap."
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Old 28th March 2006, 08:08 PM   #5
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I put phase plugs in my 103E's. Just go slowly and carefully.
I cut the dustcap first with an X, somewhat like the petals of a flower and then removed each quadrant of the dustcap individually.


Andrew
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Old 29th March 2006, 02:35 PM   #6
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I have not bought the drivers yet and after reading these replies I'm wondering if I should. I do feel some what discouraged.
Oh well, nothing ventured I guess.
Paul
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Old 29th March 2006, 08:39 PM   #7
ejfud is offline ejfud  United States
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Just buy the drivers, you won't be sorry. I made a pair several years ago and still use them on a semi-regular basis. I only use them semi-regularly because I can't stop making speakers.

They are an incredible imaging speaker. They won't play your AC/DC very well, but accoustic jazz is stunning as is the female voice. These speakers still amaze me everytime I listen to them. Add a smal sub when you can and you will be very happy.

Gary
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Old 29th March 2006, 08:59 PM   #8
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The F103 is one of the best places to start a project. Some are happy with them solo.

Me, I used them as a mid and worked outward from there adding top and bottom and I must say (I have an older version) they still kick butt after all these years.

They have had the full planet10 TLC.
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Old 30th March 2006, 12:46 AM   #9
ejfud is offline ejfud  United States
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Cal, I've been thinking about using these in a different way. Would you care to share what you have added to the 103's for highs and lows.

Thanks for your any help you could give and pictures would be even better.

Gary
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Old 30th March 2006, 02:01 AM   #10
holdent is offline holdent  Canada
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TonedeafDIY - I didn't mean to sound discouraging. I like the FE103Es a lot. They have great imaging but struggle with deeper bass and louder volumes (no surprise for a 4" driver). Since I listen to blues rock and alternative music mostly they can't keep up. However they sound great with acoustic music and seem much better suited to small rooms.

I found the Fostex 103 BLH design to be a difficult cab to build. All of the cuts (there are a lot!) require precision to get the internal horn path correct and stay consistent between both speakers. IMO the Fostex recommended BR version for the 103 is just as good sounding and a lot easier and less expensive to build.

I like the FE167Es much more but they're are roughly double the price. I have these drivers in a Bob Brines FB-16 which I think is a great design.

I also have a pair of FE126Es which seem to sound excellent out of the box but I haven't built cabs for them yet - I'm not happy with the Fostex cabs for this driver. After my build experience with the 103 BLHs I'm not anxious to try a cab design like Ron's A126 yet although if you can get around its looks it appears to be a great design.

My recommendation - start with the FE103s and build a BR or TQWT. If you can afford the FE167E jump to that driver and put them in a BR or TL design.
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