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Old 25th October 2011, 08:40 PM   #61
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Update: A few things have happened...
I have now got a SE EL84 valve amp on the mids (JBL 2482's), The bass is now a 50W amp for the tapped horns and another same amp for the mid bass. Much better control and power reserve. The upper mid (2435Be's) is on a bigger TP22 amp (TA2022). I personally find this sweeter than the TA2020 or TA2021's on that driver.
I have used the SE valve amp on the upper mids too and it worked nicely there. I think I need to save my pennies and get one more for the upper mid horns. Perhaps another one for the tweeters (now JBL 2405's) is overkill.
The 2405's are better than the cheapie Eminence BTW...

Next up is building stands for the upper mid / tweeters and the mid horns that are more discrete and allow more space/air around the tweeters.
For the time being I have refined the acoustic damping around the tweeters too.

Last edited by Speedysteve7; 25th October 2011 at 08:44 PM.
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Old 26th October 2011, 12:13 AM   #62
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Speedysteve7 View Post
The horns are pointing inwards away from the walls and perhaps due to the nature of the conicals there is a lot less radiation than normal speakers.
Your conical horns sidewall angle appear to be only around 30 degree, which would largely define their dispersion, that is a lot less than most "normal" 90 -180 degree dispersion speakers.

That narrow dispersion takes a lot of the room out of the listening experience.

Seems odd to use such a wide horizontal dispersion tweeter as the JBL 2405 with such narrow mid horns.

Last edited by weltersys; 26th October 2011 at 12:17 AM.
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Old 26th October 2011, 09:15 AM   #63
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Good point: This was what I could beg / borrow for the time being...
Do have recommendations for narrower dispersion tweeters of suitable quality? It's not an area I have explored yet
The Eminence tweeters were very narrow - drop off quickly off beam but the 2405's sound better to my ears.
I have found as you say that the room does not impact much - but the necessary closeness of the other horns does - a bit. Some improvement with damping foam. It was not horrible before but is a bit better with it and easy to do.
The stand is as much ascetics and practicality - I am taking these to a show (what you made / have - Scalford in March) so need to look good and be easy to set up, so stands are on the agenda.


Quote:
Originally Posted by weltersys View Post
Your conical horns sidewall angle appear to be only around 30 degree, which would largely define their dispersion, that is a lot less than most "normal" 90 -180 degree dispersion speakers.

That narrow dispersion takes a lot of the room out of the listening experience.

Seems odd to use such a wide horizontal dispersion tweeter as the JBL 2405 with such narrow mid horns.
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Old 26th October 2011, 09:34 AM   #64
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The JBL2405 is really useful in this situation - Just angle the slot away from vertical to suit the situation. About 30 degrees can be a good compromise in a small room.
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Old 26th October 2011, 05:33 PM   #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Speedysteve7 View Post
Good point: This was what I could beg / borrow for the time being...
Do have recommendations for narrower dispersion tweeters of suitable quality? It's not an area I have explored yet
The Eminence tweeters were very narrow - drop off quickly off beam but the 2405's sound better to my ears.
I have found as you say that the room does not impact much - but the necessary closeness of the other horns does - a bit. Some improvement with damping foam. It was not horrible before but is a bit better with it and easy to do.
The stand is as much ascetics and practicality - I am taking these to a show (what you made / have - Scalford in March) so need to look good and be easy to set up, so stands are on the agenda.
The narrow vertical dispersion of the 2405 would minimize the early reflections off the other horns, which probably impacts SQ much more than the later bounce off the room side walls the 140 degree horizontal dispersion would allow.
I like 2405s OK, though I prefer a conical horn to a diffraction horn.

I have not done enough A/B testing of compression driver tweeters to bring much to the table for recommendations, though B&C would be on my short list to try.

The Eminence APT drivers sound good when equalized flat, the problem being they are not matched well, so doing that is not easy, especially with passive crossovers.
Variations in response between drivers can be 6 dB or more.

I have made horns for the APT drivers that sound a bit better than the APT-80. They are conical, with the Hughes type throat transition.
A more narrow horizontal version (mine are 90 x 30) would probably work nicely in your system.

Of course, making some petal horns for the tweeters to match your other horns would look cool.
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Old 26th October 2011, 06:36 PM   #66
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Yeah I thought about re-housing the Eminence tweeters in a 12 sides birch ply flower to match - Might try that when I feel the hankering to cut wood


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Originally Posted by weltersys View Post
Of course, making some petal horns for the tweeters to match your other horns would look cool.
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Old 6th November 2011, 06:14 PM   #67
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With any luck I will be able to try out some Raal Lazy ribbon tweeters.
At the price I really cannot buy blind so many thanks to ADPully who owns a pair and is offing to pop over with them for a session. He gets a free listen to the 5 way system of course.
I have moved the upper horns down in the line as much as possible to allow more headroom around the tweeter / accommodate the 21cm length of the Raal's in anticipation.

Sounding pretty mighty now - if I do say so myself but here is what Mr Coco of the Wam wrote about them...

"Yes, it sounded very good indeed! It has amazing presence and a really effortless presentation. The tube amp has sweetened the upper mid which sounds less grey and more vivid than I previously remember. The slight residual bloom on the upper bass has been eliminated, too. As for the way they pressurise the room at LF... I imagine they could be used as a weapon/torture device!"

Only torture is you turn the tapped up out of all proportion of course

Roll on that 2nd EL84 SE amp for the Mid horned JBL2482's...
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Old 12th November 2011, 03:47 PM   #68
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A little update with some pics of the amps I am now using.

These two EL84 mini SET amps one for the mid horns with the JBL2482's and upper mids with the JBL2435Be's.
Click the image to open in full size.

For the tapped and mid bass I now have a pair of the Topping TP60's.
Click the image to open in full size.

The two TP-60 (50w into 8ohm) amps have really tightened up the bass - fast, accurate and on it. Since fixing the Zobels and getting these amps there is no apparent issues with Tapped to midbass overlapp.

The smaller 25w in 8ohm TP22 is for the tweeters (JBL2405's).

Finally a few lovely SPU's for good measure.
Click the image to open in full size.
Click the image to open in full size.

Next weekend I hope to test listen to the Raal Lazy Ribbons...

Last edited by Speedysteve7; 12th November 2011 at 03:49 PM.
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Old 23rd December 2011, 08:30 AM   #69
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Update: I did test some Raal Lazy ribbons and they integrated very well. These are the 9" versions and we used the 14 ohm tap and 105dB efficiency.
They are 'only' working from 9000Hz up but what they brought to the party was a seemless integration with the upper mid horn and it just sounded right. I was so involved it in all I forgot to take any photos!

Prior to this test I had moved the position of the tweeter so it is above the big mid bass horn and below the upper mid horn. Things work much better like this. The image and focus of the music is improved.

I've also been making some more flexible and permanent stands. The two stage wood ones were just lashed up from off cuts of wood I've had in the garage.

Each stand started out as a pack of steel square tubing
Click the image to open in full size.

Checking heights and dimensions

Click the image to open in full size.

Now added more tubes

Click the image to open in full size.

You don't see much stand from the front

Click the image to open in full size.

I might paint them in same finish as the horns (when I get around to finishing them) or the same colour as the walls - not decided yet. Black primer for now.

At this stage I have just 'hung' the horns using ratchet straps to make it adjustable height and time alignment wise.

Now I am making some large upbolts to carry the horns.
I have quite a lot of adjustment room for raising the mid horn and upper mid to squeeze longer Ribbon tweeter in should I be able to get hold of some... That is the plan anyway.

Here's what it looks like now from infront of the the listening chairs.

Click the image to open in full size.

I've added some acoustic absorbing foam and that really cleans up the reflection interference - gives a much cleaner sound. The foam is again in test stage so not so pretty yet.

Click the image to open in full size.

fun and games...
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Old 1st January 2012, 08:57 PM   #70
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time for an update

I've been reading up on Le Cleac'h and tractrix horns a bit and also tested the same thing Mr Coco tried with pipe foam

Click the image to open in full size.

Having taped it up to ensure smooth transitions I liked the results. Slightly smoother and
silky is how I would describe it.

I am looking into to making a Le Cleac'h horn profile next to try that. For practicality I will do the upper mid (crossing at 1250Hz and up).

But before I start the full Le Cleac'h project (still reading up on that one) let see if we can eek out even more performance out of the conicals...

Having spent a bit more time with the on foam rolled mouth terminations on the Mid upper horns (crossing at 1250Hz up) and having had a good look at this thread
about Le Cleac'h profiles vs others...
Jean Michel on LeCleac'h horns

This one is linked to and shows a simulation of what it might look like
LeCleac'h horn vs Conical Horn

This one that Mr Coco sent me does some practical tests and shows some measurements.
Factors Affecting Sonic Quality of Mid & HF Horns & Waveguides

Anyway I taped the foam on to the horns to ensure careful smooth termination. Upon more listening I liked the result. Slightly smoother and silky - nice.

Having spent quite a lot of time fiddling with the foam I bit the bullet and in not much more time make a permanent solution.

12 pieces compound angle cut to fit (table saw )
Click the image to open in full size.

Spent a while rounding and we have
Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

Back with driver loaded and in place on the stand.

Click the image to open in full size.

Can't test yet as the 2nd one is in the workshop with the pieces gluing. More shaping work tomorrow morning and then listening tests in the afternoon.

Fun and games.
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