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bbradley 2nd December 2011 06:50 PM

First time speaker build help
Hi everyone,

I'm researching my first speaker build and looking for something inexpensive and simple to get me started. What I settled on so far was the Zaph Audio ZBM4 but some parts are no longer offered. The MCM 55-1853 is back ordered, so I was going to use the MCM 55-3853, no big deal there.

The crossover uses parts 4 ohms Eagle Metal Oxide Film and 5 ohms Eagle Metal Oxide Film. In another post I saw that I could use what I assume is this for the 4 ohm: Mundorf 3.9 ohm Metal Oxide Film Resistors: Madisound Speaker Store

But I'm not sure what I can use for the 5 ohm.

My other option is to maybe build the Overnight Sensations, since I can purchase the parts as a kit here: Overnight Sensation Kit /Pr but I was hoping to try the ZBM4's.

Any suggestions? I'm also open to other speaker recommendations with available parts.

Thank you!

sreten 2nd December 2011 07:44 PM


You can use the standard value of 4.7R instead of the unusual value 5R,
(just like your using the standard value of 3.9R instead of the unusual 4R).

For the size + price there are not many other options out there, AFAIAA.

rgds, sreten.

bbradley 2nd December 2011 07:49 PM

I'm not too concerned with the size, just the price. I want it to be affordable for my first pair so I get some experience before I throw down a bunch more money on something I would really like.

My game plan was these then maybe an MTM book shelf or floor stander pair.

As far as the Resistors, do brands make much of a difference? or anything that Madisound/parts-express offers will be fine?

I see this one from Madisound: Mundorf 4.7 ohm Metal Oxide Film Resistors: Madisound Speaker Store (edit: just noticed these are out of stock.. i'll have to find something else..)

If thats all I need.. I suppose I'll go ahead and order these this weekend and get started!

planet10 2nd December 2011 08:13 PM


Originally Posted by bbradley (
Overnight Sensations

One of the loudspeakers at the last VI diyFEST were these. Immediately after came a couple EL70eN based speakers... it was the general consensus that the latter cleaned the former's clock. The small box (about the same size) and even more so in the larger box (Bob immediately sold at least 4 pr of EL70). Stock EL70* are certainly inexpensive, and it would be simplier (no XO).

*(Bob also has a number of bundles with bits like binding posts)


bbradley 2nd December 2011 08:45 PM

Is that the cabinet you would be suggesting? I suppose all I would need would be the drivers and binding posts? the kits i'm seeing all have ports and things I my not need for that? It's also made with baltic birch plywood.. I was planning on using MDF.. would that be ok if I chose to go this route?

I'll have to read more about these

planet10 2nd December 2011 09:10 PM

Yes that is the one.

If you call Bob, he can put togther all the pieces you need.

MDF isn't as good as ply, but in a cab this small it isn't as big a difference as larger boxes.


sreten 2nd December 2011 09:16 PM


Perhaps you want to rethink your game plan. Building a FR as P10 suggests
is all about cabinet skills and not much else, in the end what driver you
fit will make little difference to what you learn.

For the ZBM4 if you don't plan on adding a sub with an AV amplifier perhaps
its not the best choice for getting a hang of the various compromises.

I can suggest looking at these two kits :
Aurasound NS6 Speaker Kit - 4 ohm Woofer - Parts Only: Madisound Speaker Store
Aurasound NS6 Speaker Kit - 8 ohm Woofer - Parts Only: Madisound Speaker Store

So well within your budget. One suits sealed boxes more, the other vented.

I'm saying this because the ZBM4 is seriously low sensitivity, and might be
not a build you can easily just move on and build something else, YMMV.

Assume a fairly slim box and play around with WinISD : LinearTeam

A floorstander of around 22L tuned to 44Hz for the 4 ohm version looks
good to me. Point is with the tool you can play around with sealed 8 ohm
versions and vented 4 ohm versions, and learn about sizing, ports etc...

WinISD is the tip of the iceberg, but where you start, lots of links below.

Cabinet design the world is you oyster, IMO for the above make them
fairly low and angle the baffle, or the whole cabinet, add a base.

Look at a less tall version of the Tempo, at HumbleHomeMadeHifi,
for inspiration, but make it simpler, don't go for his heroic builds.

rgds, sreten. (see if nothing else, the excellent FAQs)

Great free SPICE Emulator :

bbradley 2nd December 2011 10:04 PM


Thanks! I was originally shooting for the ZBM4 because I got the opportunity to assemble a basic cabinet, assemble a crossover and build a speaker that seemed straightfoward for a first time build.

I just downloaded WinSD but this seems a bit over my head so far. I do have a book on the way for speaker building which might help me make sense of some of what I'm looking at here. I feel like this might be step two for me. I was thinking of just building someone elses design first and them moving onto either a more complicated design or then working on my own cabinet. If there was a simple cabinet I could just follow along with that kit, that would work for me.

I'll play more with the app this weekend, maybe I can make sense of it. Some of the values for the aurasound driver I didn't see listed on the site but I'm sure I'm just overlooking them.

Using a subwoofer I have and an receiver would be no problem.

Also, I could easily upgrade my budget.. the only reason I wanted to keep it cheaper at first is to make sure I can get through a build before I drop a lot of money and end up with an unfinished project I can't handle.

I ended up with the Overnight Sensations from a recommendation on the first site you have, Undefinition. I'm new to hifi in general as well as DIY speakers. I currently have a pair of JSE Infinite Slope .6's that I would like to replace with DIY's and then probably sell off as I continue to build more speakers down the road.

Again, thanks for all the info!

sreten 2nd December 2011 10:08 PM

Hi, if you have a sub and an AV amplifier, stick with the ZBM4, rgds, sreten.

bbradley 2nd December 2011 10:11 PM

I do, and building a sub one day as another project could be fun too.


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