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Old 15th November 2007, 08:36 PM   #1
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Default Amplifier for Tangband speakers and speaker placement?

I was told to look into the Tang Band W3-1364S 3" Bamboo Cone Driver for a simple speaker setup I need. Is there a cheap amplifier that I can get to power two of these speakers? I was thinking of using the logitech Z560 amplifier to power them, but that means I would also have to use the logitech subwoofer also. Is there something relatively cheap that I can use to power these speakers in stereo that I can easily hook up to the computer/soundcard? I'm still a newbie when it comes to this.

Also, I am building a rectangular table 30" W x 40" L x 36" H and I was wondering where the best place to put the speakers would be since I need to build them into the table itself. Right now I was thinking about putting one on each of the shorter sides (30" sides) about 30" from the bottom.
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Old 15th November 2007, 09:43 PM   #2
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Visit the thrift stores. A used receiver is the cheapest solution. I found a Pioneer SA-6800 once for $10.00 (thats a 48 watt/channel amp).
Interesting that you want to build the speakers into the tables. I don't think that's the best approach.
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Old 15th November 2007, 11:25 PM   #3
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Yeah I agree. I posted another thread about something similar but I didn't get any replies really.

I don't know that a thrift store is an option since I wouldn't know how to take out or find the amp specs and know whether I can hook it to the computer or not.

I'm really not very good at building boxes and don't know enough about building complete speakers and that's one reason I wanted to just build them into the table. The table is something that is portable and will be moving around. Therefore, the speakers need to be a part of the table in some sense. Here's a basic picture of what the table looks like. What other options would I have other than screwing the speakers into the table? This is for a school project and therefore, time and budget is somewhat limited.

Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 16th November 2007, 12:17 AM   #4
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edit: I had started typing this post before you made your last post, but it wasn't submitted until after. So, I didn't see your last post before typing this one..

Here's your previous thread I guess?
Can I use a logitech Z560 amp/sub with different speakers?

As far as the audio aspects of your desk thingy, you're going about this all the wrong way (looking at your drawing in your previous thread). And I never recommend or suggested that you look into the W3-1364S drivers, but only stated that a slight variation of that driver or something very similar was probably the driver used in the little Logitech satellites.

DO NOT mount drivers into the sides of your table thingy. It's pointless, ridiculous, and you probably won't like it the least bit.

If you want suggestions, now I'll suggest something...

Build a simple pair of reputable bookshelf speakers that might be suitable to your tastes, while complementing the intended use and application at hand. By that, I mean... This is obviously a unique setup. I'm not exactly sure what all you intend to do while you're sitting at this desk you're building, or what all you'll be using it for, but it seems to have the potential to be very similar to that of a typical near-field environment (think small studio mixing, etc). If you want something that sounds decent in this listening arrangement, you can immediately eliminate several types of designs from your choices, depending on how you plan to position the desk the particular room that you intend to put it in. Obviously, the most logical, as previously mentioned, would be a small bookshelf type design, consisting of 1-2 drivers, depending on your preferences and opinions toward single-driver fullrange systems and 2-ways. A fullrange system suitable for this application will most likely be quite a bit cheaper than a good 2-way, depending on how you want to go about doing this, although there will definitely be sacrifices in doing so (imo). But rather than get into all of that, I'll just leave it up to you to make that decision. Going on... with such a close near-field arrangement, you'll most likely obtain very good results with something that tends to resemble a single point source...meaning either a single fullrange driver, a 2-way with relatively small drivers + subwoofer (if you want) with a highish crossover point between the mid and tweeter, or a dual concentric coaxial driver - where the tweeter is located in the center of the bass driver, using the woofer's diaphram for slight acoustic horn loading while causing the tweeter's power response to more closely resembles that of the woofer, and mainly, as previously mentioned... often resembling more closely that of a single coherent point-source than other types of multi driver designs. Although they're often marketed as having perfect phase alignment at the crossover point and such, those statements are often misleading, if not false. However, from my rather limited personal experiences and observations with these types of drivers, it's clearly obvious that it's much easier with dual concentrics to obtain the perceived effect that all content produced by both drivers are produced from a single point in space, very coherent, and seeming to arrive at your ears in relatively good phase alignment...even when often utilizing a somewhat simple and less than optimal crossover. Anyway, I've found that these types of designs tend to work extremely well for listening at close distances. However, one important characteristic that should be noted about these drivers is that their frequency response in the higher octaves that the tweeter covers is often a bit rough and not very flat...and mainly, they will sound a bit 'nasaly' when listening directly on-axis. Therefore, you should listen to both speakers at equal listening distance, but slightly off axis. Usually, a lack of toe-in will work. As a result, a large portion of upper frequency response improves quite a bit, and the system retains a very good power response. With that said, you'll find that these types of speakers are also a lot less critical with placement than other types, and that the position of your body and head is a lot less critical during listening. You'll be able to move fairly large distances around the room and off axis, and still receive decent sound at your ears. Also, the tweeter remains stationary and doesn't move, but the woofer's cone does.. Another important comprimise that should be noted with this type of design, is that much like a fullrange driver, cone movement of the bass driver can result in negative effects on the tweeter by introducing distortion into the tweeter's acoustic loading. If you intend to listen at higher volumes, or if desired, this issue can be dealt with by limiting the amount of low frequency extension that the woofer is required to produce, ie: in your specific situation, implement a separate subwoofer.

Do NOT place the monitors flat on the desk, but instead raise them to ear level, or slightly below ear level with the use of stands or something If the back of the desk will be placed against a wall, there's the option wall mounting.

Here's my [ul]first[/ul] suggestion...

Loki kit info:
http://www.madisound.com/MD04.html
kit without cabinets: http://www.madisound.com/catalog/pro...oducts_id=1696
Seas driver: http://www.madisound.com/catalog/pro...oducts_id=1353 (use the shielded version)
crossover: http://www.madisound.com/catalog/pro...oducts_id=1352
entire kit in natural cherry: http://www.madisound.com/catalog/pro...oducts_id=1689
entire kit in maple: http://www.madisound.com/catalog/pro...oducts_id=1688
entire kit in black ash: http://www.madisound.com/catalog/pro...oducts_id=1690
cherry cabinet: http://www.madisound.com/catalog/pro...oducts_id=1685
maple cabinet: http://www.madisound.com/catalog/pro...oducts_id=1687
black ash cabinet: http://www.madisound.com/catalog/pro...oducts_id=1686
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Old 16th November 2007, 12:33 AM   #5
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Thank you for the quick reply. I do not mean to under mind anyone by saying what may or may not work. I really do appreciate everyone taking there time to respond.

I think more information is necessary in order to understand why the speakers were placed a certain way and then maybe I can better understand what you mean also.

Basically this is a multitouch table. People will be able to stand from all directions and touch the center of the screen. Therefore, speakers can't be above the table or on it since they will interfere with the user. So basically the table needs to be accessible from all sides.

Maybe wireless speakers or using speakers outside the box would be better. The problem is that the table is portable and the best solution is to integrate the speakers in some form where they're both functional and can be integrated. The reason I need help is because this is a unique design and requires doing something different and something that may inevitably effect the potential of the sound. I'm not looking for professional sound or monitors. I just need something that will reproduce the sound decently enough. Ideally the sound would be hitting the user at ear level, but in this case it's almost impossible. So thinking of it more like a laptop speaker would make more sense maybe.

I must admit some of what was suggested is a bit over my head and maybe the DIY speaker realm isn't the best solution for me since I don't have the knowledge, equipment or the help to build all this myself. A subwoofer in the design isn't totally necessary, but something that can do full range (other than the low bass realm) is somewhat necessary. I'll take a look at the links posted and hopefully have some more knowledge. From the couple links I did see, the price is well beyond what I could afford for two speakers.

Would there be any more or different thoughts now that I stated the purpose of the table? Obviously the best solution may not be possible conceptually.
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Old 16th November 2007, 12:45 AM   #6
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edit: oops, dang it...I was typing again when you posted, lol.

By the way, another selection of nice pre-built enclosures from Parts Express that I meant to include in my last post. I think the new curved cabinets are especially nice looking:
http://www.partsexpress.com/webpage....ctGroup_ID=603

Anyway, if you can't or don't want to do something similar to I've suggested above, that's understandable. However, I'd still recommend that you keep in line with that kind of thinking if you ever intend to actually use this thing or get any kind of personal enjoyment out of it after the project/school stuff is done. If not, then I guess it's your decision to just do something extremely cheap that works. In that case, still use my previous post as guidelines of what to strive for, but just do it a lot more cheaply. It wouldn't be nearly as good as the above, but should pretty much provide the best possible results, taking into consideration all the limitations and requirements at hand with this project, regardless of what specific components you decide to go with.

Personally, if it were me, I'd probably attempt to go for all I possibly could with it, and impress the hell out of all the people with it, and then keep the project for personal use afterwards (or at least the more thought out and expensive parts of it)..but that's just me.
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Old 16th November 2007, 12:52 AM   #7
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Thank you. I really appreciate it. I'll look more into it, but I have to say I'm just as confused as ever. There's so many devices out there that incorporate sound yet don't have big monitors or designs that need to be placed outside of the device; I didn't realize it would be as much trouble as it is.

The limitations aren't just my own stubbornest, as much as they are part of the project and how the device needs to be operate. This isn't a portable studio and therefore professional reproduction of sound isn't necessary. I think sound wise this may need to be thought of as a big home computer with decent speakers or a laptop (but with better speakers). I really don't want to have to resort to something like making users wear headsets, but I have the feeling I'm still where I started.
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Old 16th November 2007, 01:03 AM   #8
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Ok then, I got it now! The intention and reasons for this whole thing didn't make much sense at first, but now I get ya.

This is what I'd do.. try to strive for a presentation that's as omnidirectional as possible (design so that the sound from each speaker travels in ALL directions around the desk) ..It's the only way to remotely get what you want.

As for what's required to do this, the concept is generally very simple, but in order to understand it best would first require a bit of simple knowledge in regards to the way sound works, how loudspeaker drivers behave, off axis response in relation to diameter of the speaker ,etc etc. But simply put, the rear wave from the loudspeaker will first need to be enclosed some how. Second, you'll have to have them facing upwards. Third, using smaller diameter drivers will generally yield better off axis response in the upper frequencies. You'll be better off going with a simple 2-way with a very small mid + tweeter to improve frequency response. It definitely won't be anything flat, but it'll do.

..This will end up being a very far from ideal omnidirectional setup, but it should work fine for this school project.

One big question is... what exactly will be played through these speakers?
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Old 16th November 2007, 02:37 AM   #9
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As previously mentioned, what kind of material will be played through them the majority of the time, and how loud does it HAVE to go, as well as a few other questions. I'm trying to figure out how much importance you might put on a couple of things like.. how important it might be to you that the sound radiating from the shorter sides of the desk be as good as when hearing it from the long sides? And how much distance from the desk itself do you expect to maintain a decent sound? Also, have you already pretty much constructed this thing, besides the audio portion? There also hasn't been much discussion in regards to what you're planning on powering these speakers with, or maybe you haven't the slightest clue yet. I think you mentioned that the source would be a computer though. If you're going to want to be able to have more than sufficient volume levels, with plenty of headroom on hand, realize that the amplification part of the audio portion of this project is likely to be by far the most expensive. If either of us or someone else could quickly build a suitable amplifier to power this stuff with, there's a chance that it wouldn't cost so much. But since I don't have any real experience with amplifier design, and I'm assuming you don't either, you'll just have to go with what's available to you.

As far as the speakers go, the way I see it, you basically have two major options, and then different ways of doing each of those..

First option.. mount a pair of small 2 to 3 inch fullrange/widerange drivers flush into the top surface of the desk on both sides of the glass, or whatever that is...centered with the short sides of the desk and close to the edges. If desired and if you feel you have the ability and budget etc, you can add a small cheap tweeter, as it might not seem as tidy in appearance, but would definitely be very beneficial if going this route. The 2" drivers would be crossed over with a highpass to a small "subwoofer" with its own amplification that's hidden inside the desk some how. Best way to do that would be to design the desk more like a big sturdy frame and attach something dark and opaque yet thin all the way around it, so that low frequencies can escape from the inside, and without too many resonances forming from large wood surfaces. This configuration would provide the best sound when standing very close to the desk (or AT the desk, pretty much touching it with your leg almost), directly above it, or sitting down at it.

Does the front portion of the desk have to be open, or is that just to show what's inside? Because if you can cover it, another possible option would be to use the space that will be created around the surface of the screen on the top of the desk, and extending that down all the sides and mounting speakers near the top corners of those sides...know what I'm saying? Then, either do the same thing mentioned previously with a small subwoofer, or use the cavity around the entire desk to mount it in... but do realize that if you do use a woofer, it will have to in its own seperate enclosure and not sharing the same airspace as the midrange/fullrange/widerange drivers. This would provide much better sound when at a small distance from the desk, or even from across the room (or down the hall, lol) ...but when sitting down at the desk, or hovering directly over it, it wouldn't sound as good. A major benefit to this apporach is that you could use a driver for the midrange that's a bit larger, but you'd still want to have good off axis response to keep from degrading the sound as much as possible when sitting or standing at the desk, with your ears being WAY above where the sound from the speakers is radiating.

Or, you could just design the whole desk as a frame, as mentioned before...build shelf like structures to the frame all the way around to fit specific prebuilt loudspeakers, and put whatever you wanted down there. The only benefit to this approach would be that you wouldn't be so confined to limited choices, you wouldn't be required to put so much thought into it, and there's a chance that you could use some equipment that you already have. There really wouldn't be much designing involved, as far as audio goes. Basically, you'd just toss whatever you had access to down there and not really give a damn about how it sounded.

So, it really just depends on how far you want to get into it while learning something in the process, how much you care about the project, or simply how you want to go about doing it.

For amplification, here's some food for thought:

Keiga KG-3100 Powered Subwoofer & 2.1 Media Amplifier:
http://www.madisound.com/kgamps.html
(The KG-VC Desktop Mini Jack Volume Control might be a nice addition to the project as well.)
..Like I said, this part of the audio will be the most expensive. Speakers and everything else can be a lot cheaper, and still work out ok.

This is as cheap as it gets:
http://www.electotronics.com/index.a...D&ProdID=76129
Here's the newer version: http://www.partsexpress.com/pe/showd...number=300-958
...Output level with these tiny amps would be very limited, especially if small loudspeakers are used.
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Old 16th November 2007, 04:10 AM   #10
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Wow, what a great reply =)

I think we're more on the same page now. I might have not explained things well originally.

As far as the construction goes. Yes, all 4 sides will be enclosed. The picture was just to show what's inside. There will actually be a couple more things inside including a laptop computer and camera in the center on the floor. So basically I can't have anything directly in the center of the box.

I have not constructed the whole thing yet. I have done the top frame and also a wood box frame where the sides would be mounted. This is what I have done so far:

Click the image to open in full size.

But, I'm limited on time so I have to decide how I want to do things within the next few days. I also thought about mounting the speakers in the top frame. The only problem is I'm not sure it's possible. I only have about 3" of room where the table hangs over and therefore would only maybe have room for a 2" driver. There will be plastic (acrylic) sandwiched inside the top frame so speakers wouldn't be able to go there unfortunately. =(

This is going to function as a multitouch music environment. There will be a multitude of applications including a multitouch piano, musical blocks you can throw around and a lot more professional software-like using your finger to draw waveforms and practical applications. You can see a couple proof of concepts here: http://youtube.com/watch?v=41u-lwkJKrs
The sound in the video is horrible due to laptop speakers I believe. So the sound can't sound totally bad, but it should sound like an average to above average home computer setup (nothing professional needed). It doesn't need to be incredibly loud where someone in another room would here it, but much louder than a laptop would sound. The reason I originally wanted to use the logitech Z560 amp/sub was because it's cheap and also puts out enough power to have a decently loud system. Maybe I should still consider this option? Use the logitech amp and buy other satellite speakers? After looking at the amplifier links posted, it seems that I would be paying more and getting less with those than if I went with the logitech amp. Spending more than $200 on the setup is really not an option right now.

I'm thinking that in the portable setup there would be decent, or slightly above average sound, and in a more home environment you could just hook up external speakers so you wouldn't have any of these issues to worry about.

I didn't really quite understand the "option 2" that you said about "extending that down all the sides and mounting speakers near the top corners of those sides...know what I'm saying?"
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