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Multi-Way Conventional loudspeakers with crossovers

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Old 21st December 2012, 01:21 PM   #231
Toaster is offline Toaster  United Kingdom
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Raals have a very different presentation to Neo 3s, with a much more brightly-lit explicit quality. I've experimented with both- I have the Raal 70-10D- using analogue active and passive crossovers as well as active digital (Mini DSP) The differences remain. The Raal sounds 'better' over its more limited usable bandwidth in the sense that it makes sounds seem clearer, better differentiated in terms of tonal colour and stereo imaging as well as having a more obvious sense of liveliness and 'transient attack'. There is also sometimes a slightly disconcerting lack of obvious 'air' compared to several other good hf units I've heard over the years. My take on this is is that this is not an artifact of the drive unit as such, since this varies a lot with different recordings, but I suspect is a lack of diaphram break-up/ hash, and possibly the ultrasonic extension, compared to other drivers. I've been happiest with the sound crossed over higher than Raal recommends, with 3.8kHz being the practical compromise I've chosen. The Neo 3 sounds rolled off at the top end by comparison with the Raal (which it is of course) and generally softer sounding throughout its range. Usable bandwidth is wider and its a lot cheaper! So, bandwidth aside, the Raal is far better then? Well, in the ways mentioned, yes, but the Neo 3 has some real strengths too. Although softer sounding, the actual clarity is very good, and although it doesn't sound as focussed as the Raal, the flipside is a relaxed spacious sound, reminiscent of the later Quad electrostatics. Nothing is really missing compared to the Raal, it's just a much more relaxed, laid-back presentation. It does sound a bit unexciting compared directly with the Raal, but the trade-off is a very civilised, easy to enjoy sound that doesn't murder iffy recordings as the Raal can. I'm really not damning the Neo 3 with faint praise either- I think it's a really good drive unit that is often underestimated because it's not as frighteningly expensive or 'impressive' as some other drivers. I should add that this is all with the standard chamber on the back of the Neo 3, which is quite shallow. It should sound even better used as a dipole, or using a deeper rear chamber of the sort GR Research use. As always, just my experience- YMMV!

Last edited by Toaster; 21st December 2012 at 01:27 PM.
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Old 21st December 2012, 01:59 PM   #232
SAC is offline SAC  United Kingdom
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Thanks very much for the feedback on these.

Of course even these Raals mentioned cost hundreds of euros each.

Hypex DLCP is out now, but that's not cheap either. Extensive preamp abilities are packed in there so it is not just a crossover you are paying for.

Last edited by SAC; 21st December 2012 at 02:02 PM.
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Old 22nd December 2012, 10:10 PM   #233
craigj is offline craigj  United States
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SAC,

Toaster explained it better than I could have articulated it, so thanks Toaster. I traded the Neo3 pdrw for the RAAL 140-15D. With my Note clone, I made a "waveguide", or frame, for the Neo3 out of 1" PVC. No waveguide for the RAAL.

Regarding crossover and "faults", both tweeters had a similar frequency response past my hearing abilities.....

Cj
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Old 22nd December 2012, 10:34 PM   #234
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I have been thinking about the Aurum Cantus AST2560 as a replacement for the Seas Excell T25 and 27TDFC used as the front and rear tweeter inthe NaO II.
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Old 23rd December 2012, 12:16 AM   #235
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That looks like quite an elegant option as a dipole driver John. One driver type I've never heard at home is this kind of AMT/ Heil tweeter. Will the 18W8545s remain, or are you also considering replacing them with a more recent design?
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Old 23rd December 2012, 12:41 AM   #236
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The only way I would consider replacing the 8545 is because they were no longer available. The midrange on the NaO II is too good to mess with.
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Old 23rd December 2012, 09:18 AM   #237
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Yep, no point fixing it if it ain't broke! Would using the AST2560 allow a lower crossover frequency and reduce the directivity 'bloom' displayed by the Nao II that the Note addresses? I've no idea if this would work, but taking a cue from the Note, perhaps the baffle of the Nao II could be cut away either side of the '2560 to increase its directivity in the horizontal plane to get a smoother transition?
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Old 23rd December 2012, 11:47 AM   #238
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toaster View Post
Yep, no point fixing it if it ain't broke! Would using the AST2560 allow a lower crossover frequency and reduce the directivity 'bloom' displayed by the Nao II that the Note addresses? I've no idea if this would work, but taking a cue from the Note, perhaps the baffle of the Nao II could be cut away either side of the '2560 to increase its directivity in the horizontal plane to get a smoother transition?
There are two issues with bloom. One is the dipole bloom of the mids which could be reduced by using a narrower baffle to raise the dipole peak. The problem with that is it increase stress on the mids at lower frequency and is not an option unless lower max SPL is acceptable. The other is tweeter bloom which requires a wave guide or higher crossover point, or both. The Note avoids dipole bloom as much as possible, by narrowing the baffle and then having the tweeter x-o high with a little wave guide helping too.

My concern with the AST is that it probably has pretty wide horizontal dispersion, but limited vertical. Maybe mounting it rotated 90 degrees might be the trick. I have a couple of other tricks I'm looking at to improve the NaO II as well.
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Last edited by john k...; 23rd December 2012 at 12:04 PM.
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Old 23rd December 2012, 12:09 PM   #239
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Originally Posted by Toaster View Post
That looks like quite an elegant option as a dipole driver John. One driver type I've never heard at home is this kind of AMT/ Heil tweeter. Will the 18W8545s remain, or are you also considering replacing them with a more recent design?
About a week ago at a friends place I heard a side by side comparison of the Neo3 against the AMT Heil, with the Heil coming out on top. I would rate it around the same as the Raven, but none on them in the same league as the RAAL (but then again I haven’t heard the smaller 70-10).

Last edited by Silent Screamer; 23rd December 2012 at 12:20 PM.
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Old 23rd December 2012, 12:22 PM   #240
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About a week ago at a friends place I heard a side by side comparison of the Neo3 against the AMT Heil, with the Heil coming out on top. I would rate it around the same as the Raven, but none on them in the same league as the RAAL.
Yes, and none of them cost the $700 that the 140-15D does either.

And, if I might ask, were these different auditions in a well designed system with the tweeters well integrated? If not, it's pretty meaningless IMO.
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