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Old 30th December 2008, 02:21 AM   #1
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Default Advisability of separate subcompartment for plate amplifier?

I'm soon going to build a subwoofer and am wondering whether I'll be able to hear any improvement in the sound quality by making a separate subcompartment for my plate amplifier, which has all the components open and exposed. Of course as the whole amplifier is built on a 5mm thick plate with the heat-radiating spines standing at right angles to the plate, it is probably plenty stiff on its own, and also airtight, no doubt. However, if I build a subcompartment for it, the overall stiffness of the whole subwoofer enclosure will be that much better, any tiny leaks around the amplifier further reduced, and -- perhaps most importantly -- the components of the amplifier perhaps somewhat better protected from constant "bashing" by the movement of the cone. One downside that immediately comes to mind, of course, is that any such subcompartment will reduce the internal volume of the subwoofer enclosure, a point that will need to be taken into account . . . the enclosure will have to grow in size accordingly to compensate for the reduced volume.

In my mind, it would be worth going to the extra trouble to build such a subcompartment if an audible improvement in sound quality would result. But in the end, can I expect there to be an audible difference?

Thanks very much for your input!

-- Chris
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Old 30th December 2008, 04:13 AM   #2
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Default Re: Advisability of separate subcompartment for plate amplifier?

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Originally posted by cdwitmer
my plate amplifier, which has all the components open and exposed
In a case like this we do... worst possible place for an amp microphonics-wise is in the loudspeaker.

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Old 30th December 2008, 04:26 AM   #3
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Default Re: Re: Advisability of separate subcompartment for plate amplifier?

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Originally posted by planet10

In a case like this we do... worst possible place for an amp microphonics-wise is in the loudspeaker.
Very well then, encased it shall be. I'll probably make the subcompartment from aluminum that's somewhere between 5mm and 15mm thick, and I'll make sure the bottom side abuts firmly against the corresponding cutout in the enclosure's internal brace.

Thanks for the input.

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Old 30th December 2008, 04:29 AM   #4
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Default Re: Re: Re: Advisability of separate subcompartment for plate amplifier?

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Originally posted by cdwitmer
I'll probably make the subcompartment from aluminum that's somewhere between 5mm and 15mm thick,
I'd just make it from the same plywood you make the box out of.

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Old 30th December 2008, 01:07 PM   #5
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If you expect to drive it hard, make the amplifier area a little bigger on one axis and include one vent on each end.
If the amp will be vertically mounted, curve a masonite piece within the corners of the vented area to assist airflow.
If the amp will be place in a horizontal position, place one vent on the side wall so air can escape upward.
Since heat rises, the internal component heat will create a passive airflow condition through the vents.
If it's for live sound use, add a fan.
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Old 30th December 2008, 02:40 PM   #6
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Some of them have a plastic casing at the back, particularly the expensive plate amplifiers.
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