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Old 2nd July 2008, 04:55 AM   #1
Jaanos is offline Jaanos  Australia
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Default Loudspeaker Advice Please

Hi everyone! First post….

Ok, so I have decided to build a set of speakers. It will be my first speaker project but I want it to last me many years so I am hoping to do it right the first time….. I have built a variety of furniture with wood (worked as a cabinet maker when I left high school) and being an engineer I would like to think I am up to the task…. My budget is up to $1500 and I am going to go with a ‘kit’ instead of trying to come up with something original.

What I like so far are:

Scan speak ultimate revelation (http://www.solen.ca/v1/ssur.htm)
Seas Thor (http://www.solen.ca/v1/thor.htm)
Zaph ZRT (http://www.zaphaudio.com/ZRT.html)
Premium 33 (http://www.audiocomponents.nl/speake...remium_eng.htm)

All are floor-standers, 2 or 2.5 way. There is plenty of info on the thor’s and a little on the ZRT but I cannot find any info on the Premium 33 or the Ultimate Revelation……. Has anyone built either of these? I have scoured the net for opinions but cannot find any……..

I auditioned some locally made speakers here in Brisbane, Australia (they both used peerless tweeters and woofers) One was an MTM with dual 5.5in woofers another was also an MTM with dual 8in woofers and the third was a TM with a single 8in. I liked the MTM with 5.5in woofers the best (especially when paired with a sub) as the others seemed to lack much of the mid-range but were better with bass (without the sub). Anyway, is this a common trait of 7-8in woofers? Or is it possible that the ‘ZRT’ will sound great for midrange as well as bass? Or would the dual 5.5in revelators in the “ultimate revelation” deliver ‘better’ midrange with similar bass response??? I plan on building a sub also so slightly less bass is ok as long as the midrange is improved.

Sorry if this is a stupid or unanswerable question; I don’t know very much about the whole audio thing just yet…..

I plan on building the boxes out of mdf then encasing them in real wood panels – veneering is also an option but I think it will be less hassle just spending the extra on real wood and going that way….. What do you all think about that? There are many different opinions as to how to best apply veneer and some people say unless you have vacume press not to even bother!!

Any suggestions on what wood will be cheap, easy to work with and look ok? (I am in Australia…) I plan on staining them very dark to suit the rest of my living room.

Thank you all in advance!! : )
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Old 2nd July 2008, 05:34 AM   #2
ScottG is offline ScottG  United States
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Out of his *many* projects:


This is the design he likes best (overall) so far:


It looks simplistic.. even mundane, nor does it measure superbly.. BUT its very efficient when compared to most loudspeakers, and that often translates into something extra you won't find in any boutique shop.

Note however that he is planning on altering the design via some additional bass drivers:


..so it might be advantageous to wait a bit for the "augmented" version.

Here is another builders results:


..and here is yet another builder's impression of the mid-bass driver Troels designed:


Veneer-wise *dark* (my pick):

Ebony Macassar premium grade:


perspective is everything
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Old 2nd July 2008, 06:17 AM   #3
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IMHO, a well executed 2.5way will always beat well executed 2way, especially when you can reduce the size of the midrange.

You should check out Andy Graddons work/threads, he's just round the corner from you, right, and talks some sense!

[yeah I know, you Ozzies sound like you're local but really you're thousands of miles apart.]
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Old 2nd July 2008, 06:38 AM   #4
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Or perhaps a simple pair of Hawthorne Iris on open baffle?
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Old 2nd July 2008, 10:10 AM   #5
sreten is offline sreten  United Kingdom
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Some rethinking is required as you say you plan on building a sub .....

For what purpose ? ..... the bass end of any system is the most
expensive part, in real estate, cabinet size, drivers etc ... and
2.5 ways are typically not built to go with a subwoofer, unless
its of the HT variety and not used for music.

The Thor I'd say is too expensive for what you get.
The SSUR appears to ignore baffle step as far as I can tell.

But how does the sub come into the picture,
what amplification and filtering will be used ?

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Old 3rd July 2008, 03:43 AM   #6
Jaanos is offline Jaanos  Australia
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Hi, thanks for the replies,

Sreten, I would like the sub for Home Theater but I also really like the sound of heavy bass…….
I am only really basing this on my limited experience with the few loudspeakers I have listened to, if I can build a set for stereo music that do not require a sub that would be great!!

So would you recommend the ZRT over my other picks??

I have looked at troels JA8008 and it looks good too……….

As far as an amp is concerned; I do not have a worthy one for these speakers so that is also on the list. I have read a few reviews on Onkyo’s and Yamaha’s new HT receivers that apparently deliver good stereo music as well….. I would like to spend around $500-800 on an amplifier.

Do you think I will get a HT receiver that is good enough for stereo music at this price, or should I go for a dedicated stereo amp?

Thanks again!!
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Old 3rd July 2008, 04:43 AM   #7
ScottG is offline ScottG  United States
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Originally posted by Jaanos
I would like to spend around $500-800 on an amplifier.

This would go along perfectly with the Troels design..


(..kind'a like skipping "hifi" altogether and going directly to "ultrafi".)
perspective is everything
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Old 3rd July 2008, 07:18 AM   #8
Jaanos is offline Jaanos  Australia
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Looks like a nice amp for not much outlay but I am probably going to buy the amp pre-assembled, this time around at least....

Thanks for the link tho!

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Old 4th July 2008, 09:45 AM   #9
sreten is offline sreten  United Kingdom
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Single ended valve amplifier (5W!) versus (100W) Jap HT amplifiers .......

FWIW this is a more intelligent design IMO :

Back to reality, 5W or 10W is simply not enough to reproduce music
with any decent bass content at an acceptable level with what you
would call a standard 2-way.

Conversely driving your average 2-way hard with more than ~ 100W
will get you into bass power handling issues unless they are filtered.

YMMV and your room size. For max output a sealed standmount ZRT
+ subwoofer with HT amplifier is an option. Then again the ZRT in
the double volume vented floorstanding mode tuned to 30Hz in
the right room might not need a subwoofer (for music) at all.


P.S. If quantity is important as well as quality checkout some of the designs
at HTguide : http://www.htguide.com/forum/forumdisplay.php4?f=39
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Old 4th July 2008, 04:30 PM   #10
ScottG is offline ScottG  United States
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For an inexpensive design:


For commercial amplifiers the predecessor to this particular amplifier always impressed me (..NOT their other models):


And here is an easier way to get into DIY loudspeakers:

perspective is everything
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