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Old 25th December 2008, 12:26 PM   #1
benro2 is offline benro2  Australia
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Default Help with building first bookshelf speakers

Hi guys,

I'm completely new to building speakers, and haven't really done any woodworking at all, but I'm very interested in building some bookshelf speakers for AUS $300 or less.

My reasons for this project are:

1. To have fun
2. To learn more about speakers and how to build them

Here are the characteristics and main uses for the speakers:

1. They will be used as nearfield monitors (next to an LCD display - so do they need to be shielded?) and so must be fairly compact too. They will be sitting on my computer desk.

2. I will be mixing music with them so they need to be as accurate as possible. I'd also like them to have a bit of bass, but not be bass heavy. I don't want to have to use a sub.

3. They will mostly be used for mixing/listening to metal and rock music, so punchiness and responsiveness is a must. I'm not sure what sort of "curve" they should have for this sort of music, so can someone fill me in on what I should be looking for here?

4. They won't be played (much) at high volumes so they must also sound good at low volumes too.

5. I'd ideally like to be able to walk into somewhere like Jaycar and pick up the drivers. I've been looking at these as possible candidates: the Jaycar CS2154 6.5" High-End Woofer/Mid and the Jaycar CT2032 Response Ribbon Tweeter. However, I know nothing about box design, so I presume the best way would be to find someone who has used these drivers before and written a review on the results? Or, if anyone has any other suitable drivers that will suit my needs that are in my price range?

I'm not too worried about looks, but if I had a choice, I wouldn't mind using something like those yellow Jaycar drivers with a matte black finish

I'd appreciate anyone's input regarding design help (ie: should I design the box myself or use a "tried and tested" combination of drivers and boxes) and with the actual construction. Something incredibly simple using cheap(er) materials would be the way to go as I have next to no woodworking skills, but can get help if I need it. I have a basic tool set but I *think* I can find someone with whatever tools I may need.

Thanks in advance for the help!
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Old 25th December 2008, 01:01 PM   #2
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With those prices (Jaycar), I would be looking for Vifa drivers from speakerbits.com as they are melbourne based.

The benefit is there are lots of Vifa designs on the web as compared to Jaycar design. Unless you have the measuring tools and equipments to design loudspeakers its perhaps best to follow a proven one.
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Old 25th December 2008, 04:54 PM   #3
Helmuth is offline Helmuth  Netherlands
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Quote:
5. I'd ideally like to be able to walk into somewhere like Jaycar and pick up the drivers. I've been looking at these as possible candidates: the Jaycar CS2154 6.5" High-End Woofer/Mid and the Jaycar CT2032 Response Ribbon Tweeter. However, I know nothing about box design, so I presume the best way would be to find someone who has used these drivers before and written a review on the results? Or, if anyone has any other suitable drivers that will suit my needs that are in my price range?
Nice choise I would say for a 3 way. The one you choose has break up at 1kHz. So do not use above 800hz
Click the image to open in full size.

Your speaker link
swans china highend

I can't find a nice mid speaker on the jaycar site. They do not have a big enough programme to cover the hole frequency range from low to high.

the jaycar (swans) speakers are ok, also the 4" to but that one needs also a mid dome tweeter.

I would advise dayton they have nice low priced speakers.like the rs125s-8.
dayton rs125s 8

And a dome tweeter of dayton. with a L-pad.
nd20fa 6

The smal diameter of the low mid driver is beter. Because you want to place the high and mid as close as possible to gether. To prefent interference distorsion in the XO region, What we realy want is a coaxial like TANGBAND sells those are the best. A point source.
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Old 25th December 2008, 04:59 PM   #4
Helmuth is offline Helmuth  Netherlands
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Here is the site your looking for. Zaph audio al the tested data about small bookshelf speakers and loose drivers. Very recommended site.

http://www.zaphaudio.com/ZBM4.html
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Old 25th December 2008, 05:05 PM   #5
Helmuth is offline Helmuth  Netherlands
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Quote:
Originally posted by gainphile
With those prices (Jaycar), I would be looking for Vifa drivers from speakerbits.com as they are melbourne based.

The benefit is there are lots of Vifa designs on the web as compared to Jaycar design. Unless you have the measuring tools and equipments to design loudspeakers its perhaps best to follow a proven one.
Those chineese drivers of jaycar are the very high qaulity. There is no direct price qaulity link. These are cheap because made in china.

I self use the RT1 ribbon of swans. cost 35euro.

Used in this speaker cost in the shop 1200euro.

Click the image to open in full size.

So jaycar sells highend drivers IMO.
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Old 25th December 2008, 05:14 PM   #6
Helmuth is offline Helmuth  Netherlands
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the 6.5" jaycar will combine very nice with the peerless xt25sr ringradiator. At low power and low XO 2order 12dB/oct

Click the image to open in full size.


And this way a build my speakers. And I show how to make a nice professional looking box. All stands and falls with good sawing of the wood. So 100% straight and within 0,5mm precise and a sharp blade to prefent breaking of chips.

my project

Regards helmuth
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Old 26th December 2008, 03:03 PM   #7
benro2 is offline benro2  Australia
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Quote:
Originally posted by Helmuth


Those chineese drivers of jaycar are the very high qaulity. There is no direct price qaulity link. These are cheap because made in china.

I self use the RT1 ribbon of swans. cost 35euro.

Used in this speaker cost in the shop 1200euro.

Click the image to open in full size.

So jaycar sells highend drivers IMO.
I love the look of those speakers, and I see they use a ribbon tweeter. What's the advantage of using one of these? I like them for the "cool factor" but would they be of any advantage to me?

Also is a DIY project that uses both these same drivers around?


Quote:
Originally posted by Helmuth
And this way a build my speakers. And I show how to make a nice professional looking box. All stands and falls with good sawing of the wood. So 100% straight and within 0,5mm precise and a sharp blade to prefent breaking of chips.

my project
I had a look at your project and I think it's a *little* too hard for me Did you mean you'd help me out with whatever project I choose or do you have a similar project elsewhere? Either way, it's much appreciated!

So you think the Zaph Audio ZBM4's are the way to go?

I was having a look at the other tests on that site and another model on there caught my eye: the ZD5's, simply because he describes them as "an extremely high end reference level small 2-way". He does say the drivers aren't cheap, but I can't find prices anywhere? I would imagine that if I'm after sound quality and accuracy for mixing, then something with an extremely flat response is what I'm after? But that doesn't necessarily mean they'll be the "best" sounding does it? I don't know if these would be cheap enough or suitable for a first-time DIYer - what do you think?
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Old 26th December 2008, 07:07 PM   #8
Helmuth is offline Helmuth  Netherlands
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Quote:
I love the look of those speakers, and I see they use a ribbon tweeter. What's the advantage of using one of these? I like them for the "cool factor" but would they be of any advantage to me? Also is a DIY project that uses both these same drivers around?
The advantage is Ribbons measure very good.

The German klang und Ton tested the RT2 as the best sounding ribbon. Bud I Zaph doesn't like ribbons. I have contact with a Italian how broke with ribbons after 20 years using them. Sound is to thin.

see here Not the same woofer.
Today a did see the RT1 in a shop for 119 euro and I pay 35euro. And I like them.

Quote:
I had a look at your project and I think it's a *little* too hard for me Did you mean you'd help me out with whatever project I choose or do you have a similar project elsewhere? Either way, it's much appreciated! So you think the Zaph Audio ZBM4's are the way to go? I was having a look at the other tests on that site and another model on there caught my eye: the ZD5's, simply because he describes them as "an extremely high end reference level small 2-way". He does say the drivers aren't cheap, but I can't find prices anywhere? I would imagine that if I'm after sound quality and accuracy for mixing, then something with an extremely flat response is what I'm after? But that doesn't necessarily mean they'll be the "best" sounding does it? I don't know if these would be cheap enough or suitable for a first-time DIYer - what do you think?
The zbm4 is very good to start your building experience and have a very good result.
ZD5 250 Australian dollars on drivers I think with filter and wood and terminals about 400 dollar minimal. I think the difference will not be so big with the more cheaper designs. Depends on your own demands.

Zaph has many well measured info no nonsense. When you build your self then the result is the question with zaph that is solved. But then your copying a design to save money. Bud I recommend it when you want to go save.
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Old 28th December 2008, 04:44 PM   #9
benro2 is offline benro2  Australia
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Quote:
Originally posted by Helmuth
[B]the 6.5" jaycar will combine very nice with the peerless xt25sr ringradiator. At low power and low XO 2order 12dB/oct
Do you know of any DIY projects that have combined these two drivers? I've looked around the net and can't find any!

If you have a look here you can see speakerbit's range of Vifa XT25 tweeters, which look exactly the same as the Peerless XT25SR. Do you know if they are in fact the same, and which driver off that page I would need?

Also, I managed to price the Scan Speak 15W8530K00 drivers as used in the Zaph Audio ZD5 and they are AUS $300 each...

I have decided on something that uses a 5" or 6.5" woofer/midrange as I think that would extend the lower end out a bit. Am I correct in assuming this? I would also like something that handles a decent amount of power. Do you have any more suggestions?
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Old 28th December 2008, 04:44 PM   #10
benro2 is offline benro2  Australia
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Quote:
Originally posted by Helmuth
Click the image to open in full size.
I forgot to mention, I really like the look of these speakers. It looks like they're using HiVi (aka Swans?) drivers exclusively! Just from the pictures, they look like the F5N and the RT1C-A.

Do you know the make/model of these speakers and if anyone has copied them as a DIY project with a writeup?
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