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Old 28th April 2008, 03:14 PM   #1
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Question DIY Surround?

I'm new here - go easy ...

My father built a pair of ridiculously powerful speakers back in the early 80's and I've always wanted to follow suit and build my own set. However, I'm an avid movie watcher and love surround sound. As dominating as his speakers are, they simply aren't meant for a balanced surround system.

I would like to build a 7.1 system to include a 12" sub and floor standing fronts. Is this something that I should just buy complete? (Klipsch, JBL, etc) Is building a surround system simply not something one should do?

I'll be hooking up whichever speakers I go with to an Onkyo SR875 receiver. Thanks for any and all helpful comments.
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Old 28th April 2008, 04:12 PM   #2
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Are you planning to wall mount this set up or can you use floor stand system?
How big is the room this system is going into?
Do you have a unlimited supply of money?
Are you farmiliar around a wood working shop?
Do you have access to wood working tools?
I brow a $4,000.00 table saw that can handle a 4'x8' sheet of mdf.

I can tell you from experience that if you have to purchase your tools you will have no money savings diying one set of speakers. Try a expert speaker designer that has tried and tested designs. Zaph is a trustworthy designer that has attention to detail like none other. He posts his designs on a web site for all to use free.

John "Zaph" Krutke's Audio Projects and Driver Tests
http://www.zaphaudio.com/index.html
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Old 28th April 2008, 05:06 PM   #3
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Quote:
I can tell you from experience that if you have to purchase your tools you will have no money savings diying one set of speakers. Try a expert speaker designer that has tried and tested designs. Zaph is a trustworthy designer that has attention to detail like none other. He posts his designs on a web site for all to use free.
Not true. If your cabinets are square and you get your wood cut to size at the lumber yard, all you will need is a router to trim the sides and flush mount the drivers. Thanks to the chinese you can buy an excellent router at a very reasonable price now. As for finishing the speakers, you can sand by hand or borrow something like an electric sander off a friend, or rent one for a day.

There are many different possibilities for your project. Try Parts Express to start with, or Google for known diy designs. You can buy kits, or assemble the parts yourself. Just make sure that you follow a proven design and crossover. These will blow away any of the high street offerings.
DIY subwoofers are very simple and may be a good place to start.

Tons of stuff on the web.

Good luck.
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Old 28th April 2008, 05:10 PM   #4
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For ultimate inspiration check out ShinOBIWONs thread below: "LGT construction diary".

I think this is used in a home cinema set up with floorstanding fronts and more compact rears.
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Old 28th April 2008, 07:47 PM   #5
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dublin78
not true ??????????????????????? As in Im lying?


I can tell you from experience that if you have to purchase your tools you will have no money savings diying one set of speakers.

The purchase list that came to mind when writing this statement.
table saw
router
router bits
router circle jig
clamps
palm orbital sander/paper
respirators/sanding mdf
respirators/painting
saw horses with plank
and a plethora of other goodies that pop into the basket when at home depot.(shop vac,electric blower, portable500w shop lite)

I find that abrasive dublin78.
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Old 28th April 2008, 08:21 PM   #6
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Chubby, I think dublin was suggesting that you need not get all the tools, that rough cuts can be made by others, that's all. I don't think anyone disagrees with you that if you were to outfit yourself with all the tools for just one project, it wouldn't pay. In fact it would be a heck of a losing proposition.

Cheers.
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Old 28th April 2008, 09:21 PM   #7
49 - for the 18th time
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Quote:
Originally posted by Cal Weldon
In fact it would be a heck of a losing proposition.
Cheers.
That could include a couple of fingers too!!!
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Old 28th April 2008, 11:28 PM   #8
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Chubby: I apologise - just offering my two cents worth.

I don't see the point in putting this guy off, though. He should end up with a better end result than what would be available through retail (depending on budget, as the cheap stuff is probably hard to match). He will learn something, maybe enjoy it, and have something to be proud of afterwards. I thought that this was the point of the hobby, and the ethos of this forum?

You are correct that he will also need a set of clamps, though these are cheap nowadays too. I will stand by my previous statement, unless he uses MDF, then he will need a face fask. I prefer plywood anyway.
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Old 29th April 2008, 01:26 AM   #9
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Quote:
I can tell you from experience that if you have to purchase your tools you will have no money savings diying one set of speakers.
It depends on your price point. Towards the upper end you're looking at $25K+ a pair for stereo speakers from a high-end audio boutique, $10K+ per pair used off Audiogon, $5-6K+/pair internet direct, or $2-$3K in materials.

For example, Beethoven Elites from Audio Artistry ran $37,500 in 1998 (bettered in all areas but maximum output by Linkwitz's newer Orion design); Wood Artistry sold assembled Linkwitz Orions for $5000+ a pair; and I spent under $2000 building my own from the plans + boards package.

I haven't spent $1500 on table saw (Bosch), cordless drill-driver (DeWalt), circular saw (Porter-Cable), router (Porter-Cable), sander (DeWalt) spiral bit, and clamps. With more time on your hands you could limit yourself to just a router with flush trim and spiral bits, getting everything roughed out at the big box store.

At the bottom end, you can't compete with cut-and-fold enclosures sliced up on a CNC router, glued together in China with labor under $1/hour, populated with drivers spec'd to optimize cross-over parts cost bought in big lots, and shipped over a 40' container at a time.

This completely disregards the value of your time, although that's not relevant when you also want a fun project to do.

Trying to design a single full-range speaker would be a mistake, but there are plenty of proven designs to suit pretty much every design philosophy, placement, and budget.
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Old 29th April 2008, 02:54 AM   #10
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Diying speakers and accessories is fun. A great hobby with a huge learning curve for me. I cant wait to see what surround sound systems this thread attracts for Puck.
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