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Multi-Way Conventional loudspeakers with crossovers

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Old 9th December 2001, 02:19 AM   #1
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Question recommended drivers?

I'm new to audio but I do know some things. Right now I am looking for the brand of drivers with the best frequency range and the best accoustical accuracy (ie- least distortion). I have been looking at Audax drivers (tweeters and woofers) for main speakers, subs, and center channels. What does everyone think about Audax and what brands would you recommend for drivers?
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Old 9th December 2001, 02:38 AM   #2
Super is offline Super  United States
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Personally, I feel that Audax's midbass drivers have excellent price to performance ratios. However, I dont think that their tweeters are of as high quality.

In terms of tweeters, I'm a big fan of soft-domes. Scanspeak is perhaps the leader of the soft domes, and the Dynaudio Esotar tweeter is also of high quality. I am, however, a fan of Focal's titanium dome tweeters.

As far as midranges go, there are a number of ways to go. Scanspeak and Focal are popular, as are Seas, Skaaning, Dynaudio, and ATC. I'm a fan of Scanspeaks reinforced paper drivers, though I've heard excellent speakers which include the Seas Excel series, and the Focals as well. Peerless and Vifa also makes excellent drivers, and often very affordable ones as well.

As far as bass drivers go, I use the Shiva for my subwoofer. Dayton's Titanic and DVC series drivers are very popular as well, as are Lambda, Focal, and a number of others. It really depends on the price point and application.

If you tell us what you'll be using the drivers for and your price point, we'll be able to help you further. Good luck.
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Old 10th December 2001, 10:46 PM   #3
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What I want to find right now are the best drivers on the market. Cost is a secondary concern. I plan on building two back dipoles, to front mains, a center channel, and a single dedicated sub woofer. I plan to use two-way designs for the mains and dipoles. I might use a three way design for the center channel but I don't know yet. The sub is also undetermined.
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Old 10th December 2001, 10:55 PM   #4
jduncan is offline jduncan  United States
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david:

It's a very subjective thing to say the best drivers on the market....there are MANY very good drivers available to the DIYer and different people choose lots of different ones for their designs.

Saying cost is secondary is OK but there's a point you realise where that will get ridiculous, for instance, diamond tweeters are available costing upwards of $3000 each and I'm sure there are more expensive products on the market.

If instead of cost no object you mean that you're willing to pay around $300-$600 per driver then the Focal Audiom range and Dynaudio's Esotar range as well as others by many other companies are VERY good drivers and an interesting place to start.

On the other hand, if you're not very experienced at this, it may be a better idea to build a cheaper speaker initially as you really should use a well-designed passive xover (or obviously if you can, an active xover) and a very high quality cabinet to get the most from these sorts of drivers.

Loudspeaker design and resultant sound quality is definitely a function of these three variables, not just the drivers.
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Old 10th December 2001, 11:01 PM   #5
Super is offline Super  United States
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I have a few more questions to take into consideration. Are the mains going to be used for two channel stereo as well? What kind of amplifier will be driving the speakers? Do you have an amplifier for the subwoofer? Is space a limitation?
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Old 10th December 2001, 11:09 PM   #6
jduncan is offline jduncan  United States
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Now that I actually thought about this....you should really decide what this system is for....if you're thinking of multichannel music (ie. SACD) then you should really have identical speakers all around....IMO the best way to go is 5 full-range speakers in this case however you could use 5 bookshelf's and a sub or two.....

if instead, as i gather is more likely, you are more interested in home theatre then its very debateable whether you even want to spend the money i suggested in my previous thread....
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Old 10th December 2001, 11:20 PM   #7
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This is going to be an all purpose system...home theater will be one of the larger uses but I also want to stereo and multichannel music. In my first post I stated the best as being drivers largest range and the least distortion, able to reproduce the most sonic details. I plan on using tube amplification for the speakers. Realize I do have a budget. I only said that cost is secondary, but not completely out of the picture. Spending $300-$600 is something I might be able to do. Thank you for your advice. BTW, is a preamp stage nessecary?
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Old 10th December 2001, 11:25 PM   #8
jduncan is offline jduncan  United States
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david:

ok, given that you're interested in multichannel music please please please do yourself the favor and use 5 identical speakers. if you wish to use a sub for lf and use non-full range speakers thats fine but dont make them different.

Getting back to the question of what you're going to drive these with, you've just said you'd like to use tube amps.

Do you plan to build your own or are you using commercial amps? Generally whether or not you use a preamp is entirely dependant on whether you use an integrated amp or seperate power and preamp....

What are you using for a surround processor? This could possibly function also as your preamp depending on what you use.

The preamp question is determined entirely by your answer to these questions......
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Old 10th December 2001, 11:56 PM   #9
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I plan on building the tube equipment myself. I don't know what I am goint to use for a surround processor. I might build that too (probably not). Do you think I should use five dipoles or five mains? I do plan on using a dedicated sub.
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Old 11th December 2001, 12:58 AM   #10
jduncan is offline jduncan  United States
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david:

ok, considering that you're building the amps yourself it just comes down to the surround processor.

and i wouldn't advise building this yourself

not at this stage anyway....

So basically most of the commercially available ones integrate a preamp of some form so no, you probably wont need preamps.

As far as full range or dipole goes, if you use dipoles that have a large enough frequency response your subwoofer should be able to handle frequency response up to that of the dipoles. Dipoles are obviously going to be cheaper and will use less space. Full range all around is going to get awkward although ultimately, all other things equal, you would do better with them.

Considering you are trying to make up the bass frequencies of five other speakers you may need either multiple (2) subwoofers. If you choose one, it will need to be quite powerful and you'll need to make sure you calculate everything SPL matching here in an accurate way.

In addition, even though you wish to use tubes for the 5 main speakers, i HIGHLY recommend you use a solid state amp for the subwoofer/s if you weren't already planning on that.
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