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Multi-Way Conventional loudspeakers with crossovers

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Old 6th November 2009, 09:19 PM   #1
ro9397 is offline ro9397  United States
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Default Mills wire vs. ceramic power resistors

How do you quantify the audible difference of the Mills? Will be employed as tweeter pad, midbass impedance EQ & overall system impedance EQ. Very high quality, high resolution system. Tweeters $90, midbass 2.5 x that. High quality caps, high attention paid to enclosure & driver fasteners. Guess I just answered my own post.

Hey, chime in anyway!

I only hesitate because there are 4 (resistors per XO) x 6 XO = 24 resistors total = Ceramic $30, Mills $90. Any lower cost source than Parts Express?

I became more interested in upgrading the resistors after hearing the differences of capacitor direction & capacitor upgrades in parallel circuits.

TIA!
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Old 6th November 2009, 10:19 PM   #2
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Mills are the best but certainly $$ish.

Try the gold coloured Dale wirewounds that come in the "heatsink" packages with two little mounting tabs - they sound almost as good as a Mills but a lot less $ - and FAR better sounding than ceramic WWs.

Regards, Allen (vacuum State0
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Old 6th November 2009, 11:04 PM   #3
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Handmade has much better prices than Parts Express on the Mill resistors.
I have all Mills output resistors in my Leach amp and am very satisfied with the sound. A lot of the Pass amps use the Panasonic 3 watt metal film types at 0.51 each at Digikey. You will be hard pressed to find many who will discredit that amp line.

Tad
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Old 6th November 2009, 11:23 PM   #4
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I did not try the Mills but i also like wirewounds best in speakers.
For best results i use Mundorf Supreem. They are non inductive non magnetic and low inductance.
having measured and listened to a lot of resistors i found that inductance is not an issue at audio frequencies even when the resitor has no Aerton-Perry winding.
Other favourits of mine are Vishay-Sfernice RWM. They are awaillable in 7, 8 and 11W at Farnell and cost around 1€. The sound has a bit more sparkle in the treble and is ideal for a softdome tweeter. You can fake a non inductive by mounting two resistors of double value close together, inverting the leads of one and then paralleling them for half value. Welwyn-TT electronics makes the somewhat similar W22, W23 and W24 series giving an even brighter sound with a very "high" soundstage. I do not know where that effect comes from but it is very obvious on listening.
For ribbon tweeters i like to use Vishay RCH, TT-BCP or BRP, Tyco MPC thick film resistors. They sound neutral as if they whould not be there but the Mundorf has a liquidity that is hard to explain but easy to like.
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Old 7th November 2009, 12:34 AM   #5
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(Donning flameproof underwear) I don't believe that the relatively low value resistors used in crossovers affect the sound one iota. There isn't that much wire in them and the inductance is negligible with low Q even if they're inductively wound. All the manufacturers use wire from a limited number of commonly available alloys. Heck, you can wind 'em yourself if you get a spool of Rediohm 800 or one of the other super low TC wires and want to rig up a spot welder- these alloys can't be soldered with the exception of Manganin and Constantan. Manganin, BTW, would be my choice if I were going all-out on a high end resistor. In non-wirewound resistors the electrical properties might be a bit different (better HF), but not in any way that will affect a crossover. Putting these in a feedback loop or someplace where the measured differences matter might reveal sonic differences or circuit instabilities, but not in a low impedance high level passive crossover. Bottom line is that the most expensive resistor you can buy has nothing over a piece of wire hacked out of an old toaster oven for this use.
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Old 7th November 2009, 12:39 AM   #6
ro9397 is offline ro9397  United States
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Bless your hearts! Great advice, thanks!

For loudspeakers, what is an accepted range of ratios for computing resistor wattage vs. maximum amplifier power?

Joachim
Your little standmount was among the best performing displays heard at all of CES '09. Contratulations on superb performance at such a reasonable price! (about $2500/pr USD) Obviously Allan Perkins' front end & the electronics helped.
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Old 7th November 2009, 01:04 AM   #7
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Thank you for the kind words.
I agree with conrad that inductance of resistors is a non issue in loudspeakers.
i made some measurements that i will publish on the soon to be released Quantum Music website. i was quite surprised that even the cheepest zement resistor had no measurable inductance up to 200kHz with a 2.5 Ohm dummy load.
of cause i can measure inductance with a squarewave but in the audio range there is nothing to worry about. i disagree that they sound all the same. please visit me and i can show you. by the way Isabellenhütte that makes resistive wire for a lot of companies is only 60km from my place. the are experts in metalurgy and it forrunners must go back to the midleages being swordmakers. they make Manganin Resistors called Isaplan.
Concerning wattage i whould not go under 5W. Resistors with higher wattage also distort a little less (but only under -140dB) and temperature coefficient it not such an issue. i learde that resistors in impedance compesation circuits can get quite hot so go for 10 to 20W there.

"Use your ears as your eyes" - Gertrude Stein
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Old 7th November 2009, 01:25 AM   #8
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I have, in fact, some Isabellenhütte Isaplan resistors! They are indeed about the best resistors I've ever seen. I suspect not widely available here in the USA, though I haven't searched. I get my resistance wire from Kanthal, formerly H.P. Reid, of Palm Coast Fl. They're also big in hex shaped wire for voice coils.

Best,
Conrad
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Old 7th November 2009, 01:39 AM   #9
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Let`s do a DIY resistor !
I have an idea for a chaos resistor that is just a bundle of resistive, insulated wire caotically pushed together and then somehow laquered, sealed or potted.
There is one guy in Switzerland that winds resistors like coils in old radios. Very pretty.
Isabellenhütte also makes one variaty that is antimagnetic. I think it has exactly 1 Ohm per meter and could be usefull.
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Old 7th November 2009, 01:40 AM   #10
ro9397 is offline ro9397  United States
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I am very pleased & thankful for so much wise advice. Pushing my luck a little...

Coil advice also highly appreciated:

Tweeter: none
Midbass: .8 mH series
Overall system impedance EQ: .5 mH + 11 mF cap + 4 Ohm resistor in series, this circuit parallel wired at input
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