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Old 8th May 2003, 10:57 PM   #1
Kanga is offline Kanga  Australia
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Default Suggestions for high efficiency high SPL kit/design

Hi

I have a friend who lives on a small island between the Australian mainland and Tasmania, who wants to build some speakers. He lives in an old church hall, that is maybe 30m (100 feet) x 10m (30') and quite live (reflective).

He wants some speakers that can act as reasonably good quality hi-fi speakers, and that he can crank up for the occasional disco or film night that he holds at the hall.
His current amplification is a new Kenwood surround sound amp rated at 110 W into 6 ohms (yes - dodgy Kenwood numbers in action) into the front channels. I'm not sure what the surround channels can do.

Because of the limited amp power, he'll need something fairly efficient to get high SPL, and maybe we can add a powered sub later (Labhorn maybe...) to boost the bass and add more amplification.

Budget is probably around $750 US for pair of speakers.

He is a builder amongst other things, and so can handle cabinet work no problems, but doesn't know anything about electronics etc. I'd probably put the XO together for him.

I'm looking for either a kit or design that would be suitable. I'm not really in a position to be able to design passive crossovers on this one so I'm looking for something that's been worked out.

I was thinking of maybe an MTM with PHL drivers (available in Aus), but not many tweeters are available that have high enough sensitivity to match, apart from ribbons. Horn tweeters don't seem popular for Hi-fi. Don't they sound any good?

Any suggestions?

Mick
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Old 8th May 2003, 11:03 PM   #2
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Lightbulb High efficiency speaker kits

You should take a look at the adire audio (www.adireaudio.com) he12.1 and he10.1 kits, they are over 95db/w, easy loads and quite 'hifi' by all accounts. Personally I'm waiting for the he8.1, due out in the next couple of months, slightly lower sensitivity, but much smaller. If those don't work, try and find other kits that use eminence drivers, they are very efficient (>95db/w) and range in size from 8 to 18 inches.

Good luck

Stuart
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Old 9th May 2003, 12:31 AM   #3
prh is offline prh
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Check www.vaf.com.au and look up the DC-X speaker range.

Very high fidelity, very efficient, lots of clean deep bass.

Can get a kit with drivers and cabinets or just drivers. Xover is a single cap.

I use them, and I like them. I drive them with 120 real watts per side, and they can make a very big sound.

Based in Adelaide so shipping shouldn't be too scary.

Check them out.

Paul.
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Old 9th May 2003, 01:22 AM   #4
chops is offline chops  United States
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Although they are not a kit, why not try to find some good used Klipsch Corwalls, La Scalas, or Belleklipschs?!

I gave my brother my pair of original Cornwalls along with a McIntosh MC250 amp that he now uses with just a cd player and it sounds pretty good. When I had the Cornwalls, (101dB @ 1 watt) and MC250, (50 watts per channel), I could crank out some serious SPL. If I remember correctly, I hit a max SPL of 126dB 15 feet down my hallway!! To top it all off, the little Mac amp barely even got warm after playing a whole cd that loud, (about 30 watts RMS), even though my ears rang for days.

It was way too loud to stay in the room and quite a bit louder than any night club I've ever been in, and I've been a bunch of them.

Just a thought.
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Old 9th May 2003, 03:28 AM   #5
Kanga is offline Kanga  Australia
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Thanks for the posts so far

Paul - the VAF DC-X was one I'd had a look at and looked good. What kind of tweeter does it use that has 93dB efficiency? Did you get the cabinets, and if so what did you think of them?

Stuart - Adires look good too. Shipping costs may be a problem, but they're not too expensive to start with so could be an option.

Chops - good idea re Klipsch horns. Unfortunately there wouldn't be many of these come up on the second hand market in Australia, so you could be waiting a looong time.

Mick
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Old 9th May 2003, 05:01 AM   #6
Variac is online now Variac  United States
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Adire uses Eminence drivers for these. Maybe they would sell you the kit without the woofers, and you could buy the Eminence drivers locally. I suspect since Eminence would ship them by the containerload that their shipping costs will be lower and your local retail price would be a lot lower than paying shipping from the US
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Old 9th May 2003, 05:24 AM   #7
prh is offline prh
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Quote:
Originally posted by Kanga
Thanks for the posts so far

Paul - the VAF DC-X was one I'd had a look at and looked good. What kind of tweeter does it use that has 93dB efficiency? Did you get the cabinets, and if so what did you think of them?

Mick
Well, I dug out my manual. Tweeter is, to quote:

"25mm soft dome ferro-fluid damped shallow horn tweeter"

I did get the cabinets, and they are SOLID. Quite dead on the knuckle-rap test. Assembly was a no-brainer, but you do need a good soldering iron to achieve quick, solid joins. VAF can do spade lug connectors if requested.

My speakers were some of the first off the production line. VAF have upgraded the design since: different damping inside, and slightly different port, I think. With good source material, these speakers provide wonderful imaging, but the "sweet spot" is fairly narrow.

Which Island does your friend live on, if I may ask?

Paul.
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Old 10th May 2003, 12:03 AM   #8
Kanga is offline Kanga  Australia
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Paul

I can do the soldering required for the speakers.

My friend is on Flinders island - beautiful place, and as yet still unspoilt. His sister and her husband were the first to move there from Melbourne, then my friend followed, and now the parents are moving over too!

There's even an American playwrite that lives on the island for about 6 months of the year.

One of the kind of nice things about living on such a small isolated island is that because of the lack of goods and services that you'd expect in a city, you have to do these things yourself. So because he has the hall he uses the space to put on films, hold dances etc.

Mick
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Old 10th May 2003, 01:07 AM   #9
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> What kind of tweeter does it use that has 93dB efficiency?

Apparently VAF use modified or specialy made SEAS drivers.

Regards,
Tim
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Old 10th May 2003, 01:55 AM   #10
Ken L is offline Ken L  United States
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Default Food for thought

You are setting parameters for two different situations that are quite different.

Audio - listening/HT is designed for soundstage and imaging and resolution.

However, when you add to the equation disco and film night in a room that is quite a bit larger than you find in an average residence, you are getting into _Pro_ sound. Pro sound equipment is designed more for SPL and dispersion rather than resolution.

And, you will find that people will soak up a surprising amount of sound - and will absorb the highs more readily than lows. So a system that is designed for home audio will become less and less able to keep up as more people enter the hall. You're not really going to cover 30' by 100' with 2 speakers if you've got a bunch of people in there - Probably need at least four maybe 6 depending on how many people - you could easily buy or build pro type speakers to meet this need - but I wouldn't really want to listen to my cd's on these all of the time.

I suggest that you approach this to have the best sound you can for which is most important - individual use or use with groups.

Then after satisfying the primary purpose, buy used or otherwise cheaper equipment to fill the secondary need.

Something you might want to think about.

Later

Ken L
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