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Old 21st September 2014, 08:28 PM   #1
gornir is offline gornir  Sweden
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Default Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 review and DIY mods

Hi,

I've done a four part review and some DIY mod suggestions on the Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 loudspeaker for those who are interested!

Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 review part 1
Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 review part 2
Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 review part 3
Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 review part 4

Regards

/Göran
Attached Images
File Type: jpg WD10.2_1.JPG (88.7 KB, 542 views)
File Type: jpg WD10.2_3.JPG (75.7 KB, 527 views)
File Type: jpg WD10.2_8.JPG (114.1 KB, 526 views)
File Type: jpg WD10.2_11.JPG (105.5 KB, 520 views)
File Type: jpg WD10.2_19.JPG (96.6 KB, 527 views)
File Type: jpg WD10.2_35.jpg (102.2 KB, 231 views)
File Type: jpg WD10.2_40.jpg (106.9 KB, 205 views)
File Type: jpg WD10.2_47.jpg (90.6 KB, 160 views)
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Old 21st September 2014, 10:11 PM   #2
sreten is offline sreten  United Kingdom
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Hi,

FWIW your picture of the bassmid clearly shows the sealing gasket.

rgds, sreten.
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Old 21st September 2014, 10:19 PM   #3
system7 is offline system7  United Kingdom
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Good stuff, Gornir.

That's what I call a proper evaluation. What a terrible sample you ran into. Without having your expertise, I don't think the average user would have picked up the faults.

I suppose it removes the mystique to show the filter, but that is always the most interesting thing for me. That second order original crossover is quite shallow, isn't it? Near LR2 I'd think. The Bowers and Wilkins B&W 685 looks similar, but only uses a single capacitor IIRC. B&W Group North America Service & Support - Service Manuals

I like your upgrades idea. That is very DIY and the sort of thing that people like to do here. You might find this post interesting on ZD5-type ladder networks: Could a kind soul please break down this horrid Xover

To my surprise, I found a regular 4th order treble works much the same way as a 3rd order plus ladder delay network if you flip the polarity.

4 ohm bass seems to be a bit simpler than 8 ohm to implement. I've noticed that trend a lot in commercial speakers. But woven Kevlar is something we don't usually consider in DIY for some reason. The bass Le was low too. Maybe a shorting ring in there. The Qts of 0.6 on a reflex was another surprise.

I shall reread the whole thing again later in the week.
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Old 21st September 2014, 11:51 PM   #4
ttan98 is offline ttan98  Australia
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Gomir,

A very good thorough review, this what I called an Engineering Review.

The first thing that comes my mine is the quality control from Wharfedale leaves a lot to be desired.
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Old 22nd September 2014, 02:55 PM   #5
gornir is offline gornir  Sweden
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sreten View Post
Hi,

FWIW your picture of the bassmid clearly shows the sealing gasket.

rgds, sreten.
Hi Sreten,

Yes, that's the sealing gasket I put on. Originally it was non existing!

Regards

/Göran
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Old 22nd September 2014, 03:05 PM   #6
gornir is offline gornir  Sweden
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ttan98 View Post
Gomir,

A very good thorough review, this what I called an Engineering Review.

The first thing that comes my mine is the quality control from Wharfedale leaves a lot to be desired.
Thank you!

I think I had exceptional bad luck with my pair and I hate to think this should be a common quality control issue from Wharfedale. On the other hand e.g. the faulty wired cross-over was really bad and shouldn't slipped through the quality control.

I was also surprised to see that there was a thin layer of dust covering the speakers underneath the plastic wrap-in.

However my local Hifi shop gave me new replacement drivers for the faulty ones without hassle.

Regards

/Göran
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Old 23rd September 2014, 08:40 PM   #7
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Back in 2008 I had a pair of Diamond 9.6 which were modified due to poor sound. The walls were 16mm and were made of some particle board, that looked and felt more like cardboard but MDF. The drivers had cast aluminium baskets and quite good build quality, the finish however had issues too, box damping was taken care by a single roll of polyester fill behind the woofer.
The biggest issue with them turned out to lie in the crossover section - poorly executed crossover with a 5db dip in the 3-7Khz region, electrolytic caps and iron cored coils ( well, one was 13mH so that I could understand but the other was 1.3mH ).
Mod was close to this one - walls were treated with bitumen pads, sheep woolffrom Visaton replaced the small polyester rolls, crossovers went to ClarityCap PX and air cored coils, the mid-tweeter section was reworked to clear the, what looked like an intentionally designed, dip in the power response. They improved but not considerably and nowhere near a similarly priced DIY project. Together with those speakers I bought the then flagship Panasonic 50" TV available here and they sounded pretty much the same as the TV`s inbuilt speakers but with more bass.
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Old 2nd March 2015, 02:38 AM   #8
jojip is offline jojip  United States
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Hello Gornir,

I recently got a pair of used wfd 10.2 and stumbled upon the excellent article on your audioexcite website. I have been following your work since then. Great stuff!!

So i undertook upgrade of the 10.2 based on your work. I performed the full Level 1 surgery including air core inductors for the woofer XO.

Unfortunately i am quite unhappy with the end results. I'm in no way questioning your work on the wfd10.2. So please do not misunderstand me.

I am posting only to see if you could offer some comments on what directions i should consider for my investigation.

I understand there is no useful inputs that can be provided without access to measurement, listening and physical inspection.

I have attempted to overcome that by posting some quick and dirty measurements i made using HOLM impulse.

I see a big dip arounf the XO point and also see that the L and R speakers measure quite differently.

I have used the hiigh quality parts recommended in your article and the aircore inductor is a Solen unwound to 1.6MH (DCR of .29) (havent measured to confirm but this was done for me by madisound)

Please offer some comments.

thanks
Joji
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File Type: png left.png (76.7 KB, 113 views)
File Type: png right.png (78.3 KB, 55 views)
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Old 4th March 2015, 03:07 PM   #9
gornir is offline gornir  Sweden
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jojip View Post
Hello Gornir,

I recently got a pair of used wfd 10.2 and stumbled upon the excellent article on your audioexcite website. I have been following your work since then. Great stuff!!

So i undertook upgrade of the 10.2 based on your work. I performed the full Level 1 surgery including air core inductors for the woofer XO.

Unfortunately i am quite unhappy with the end results. I'm in no way questioning your work on the wfd10.2. So please do not misunderstand me.

I am posting only to see if you could offer some comments on what directions i should consider for my investigation.

I understand there is no useful inputs that can be provided without access to measurement, listening and physical inspection.

I have attempted to overcome that by posting some quick and dirty measurements i made using HOLM impulse.

I see a big dip arounf the XO point and also see that the L and R speakers measure quite differently.

I have used the hiigh quality parts recommended in your article and the aircore inductor is a Solen unwound to 1.6MH (DCR of .29) (havent measured to confirm but this was done for me by madisound)

Please offer some comments.

thanks
Joji
Hi Joji,

I'm sorry to hear that you had issues with your Wharfedale 10.2 mod.

I have a few questions to you.
  1. Did you do any “quick and dirty” measurements on the original speaker/x-over?
  2. Did you check the component values on the original x-over. Are they the same as the ones I described in the article?
  3. Can you check to see if the driver models (mid-woofer and tweeter) are the same as mine?
  4. Can you describe in more detail what it is you are unhappy with sonically compared to the original x-over?

I had three issues with my pair of Wharfedales. One of the x-overs had faulty wiring, one tweeter had significantly lower level than the other and one of the mid-woofers had a mechanical noise. I changed the faulty drivers and re-wired the faulty x-over.

To be able to better analyze your issue, can you please re-check your x-over wiring and try to reverse the polarity of the tweeter that has a dip in the response, in order to see if it is wrongly marked plus and minus? (I wouldn’t be surprised if it was).

Can you please redo the “quick and dirty” measurements as follows?
  1. Suspend the loudspeaker so that the tweeter is half way from the floor to the ceiling e.g. 1.25m from floor if the ceiling height is 2.5m and free from side walls etc.
  2. Set the measurement mic at tweeter height on-axis and place it at about 2m distance from the tweeter.
  3. Measure the loudspeaker with the new x-over and both drivers connected.
  4. Measure the loudspeaker with the new x-over and only the mid-woofer connected.
  5. Measure the loudspeaker with the new x-over and only the mid-tweeter connected.
  6. Measure the loudspeaker with the new x-over and both drivers connected, but with the tweeter reversed in polarity.
  7. Set the gating to about 400Hz on all of the measurements above and do not move the mic or speaker or change the amp level between measurements. Take some screenshots of the result.
  8. Repeat point 2-7 for a 15deg off-axis measurement.
  9. Repeat point 1-8 for the second loudspeaker.

These measurements might not be perfectly looking if you don’t have a calibrated mic and measurement setup, but it would give me some more information to point you in the right direction.

Regards

/Göran
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Old 4th March 2015, 05:03 PM   #10
gornir is offline gornir  Sweden
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jojip View Post
Hello Gornir,

I recently got a pair of used wfd 10.2 and stumbled upon the excellent article on your audioexcite website. I have been following your work since then. Great stuff!!

So i undertook upgrade of the 10.2 based on your work. I performed the full Level 1 surgery including air core inductors for the woofer XO.

Unfortunately i am quite unhappy with the end results. I'm in no way questioning your work on the wfd10.2. So please do not misunderstand me.

I am posting only to see if you could offer some comments on what directions i should consider for my investigation.

I understand there is no useful inputs that can be provided without access to measurement, listening and physical inspection.

I have attempted to overcome that by posting some quick and dirty measurements i made using HOLM impulse.

I see a big dip arounf the XO point and also see that the L and R speakers measure quite differently.

I have used the hiigh quality parts recommended in your article and the aircore inductor is a Solen unwound to 1.6MH (DCR of .29) (havent measured to confirm but this was done for me by madisound)

Please offer some comments.

thanks
Joji
Joji,

Could you also change the HolmImpulse scale so it looks like the attached picture of my Wharfedale 10.2 original x-over measurement?

As you can see, one of my tweeters had significantly less output and the original x-over also have a dip around 4kHz.

/Göran
Attached Images
File Type: jpg WD10.2_Freq-0deg-System-1L-vs-2R.jpg (132.4 KB, 49 views)
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