Budget bookshelf speakers build recommendations?

Disabled Account
Joined 2023
Hey everyone!

First time posting here. I have owned and used a pair of KRK Rokit Classic 5s for close to 8 years now. I always really enjoyed their sounds, not knowing any better. It has 'good enough bass extension' and sounds alright.

I have been meaning to upgrade my system for a little while know. I would like to go the DIY road because I want the absolute best bang for my bucks. I have some experience when it comes to DIY, enough to undertake a nice build, going slow and steady.

I'm somewhat on a tight-ish budget, and wanted to explore my options. The speakers would be placed in a room that is about 14/16 square meters, on bookshelves.

I listen to jazz and electronic music mainly so bass extension and good detail retrieval is important for me. Most of all, I'd like for the build to truly feel like an upgrade from my current studio monitors.

I have about 400€ set aside for the build. I've been looking everywhere but it's hard finding good, recent recommendations, and I always end up clicking on dead links or seeing recs from 2011. I was wondering where the best value lies nowadays.

I don't mind sourcing individual parts vs. getting a kit. I have access to some woodworking equipment but would prefer something straightforward vs. some odd, complex slanted cabinets. Of course, if a complex cabinet is what's standing between me and an awesome speaker, I'd be willing to go the extra mile.

I would chose an amp based of my choice of build. Budget for that is around 200/250€. DIY is alright as well.
Don’t forget that most speakers on here are passive designs and will need a suitable amplifier to drive them. The KRKs are active and so have the amps built into them. Just stating the obvious so you can budget for the amp as well, probably need about as much again for a decent second hand c. 400euro will get you and older Marantz PM600x, Rotel are good quality and if you can find a RA1062 that would be very nice and there is the Arcam A32 again if you can find one in the budget that would be also very nice.
Disabled Account
Joined 2019

there is a misconception imo. Your first diy loudspeaker will cost you more than a second hand or maybe a good brandnew monitor for the same budget.

Because of the learning curve, parts, wood, tools, errors, no experience. This is a hobby. A hobby is costing. What he gives you is more than the sound you get, this is a journey.

Your best bet if looking at the TCO and sound target as primary goal: a flat pack kit : design is made by someone experienced; critics rated this kit; you have the enclosure and parts in the flat pack. Your diy skills will be involved in wood glueing, veenering if you want it or painting, soldering of course.

There are a lot according where you live and sourcing possibilities : Carrera monitor, for instance have good drivers and a flat pack here and there. Bromo, etc..

If you know someone skilled and having tools for the cabinets, it open the possibilities and choice really exists.

Of course the sound is not only about loudspeaker but the amp; the room layout, the choice according the spl, distance of listening and of course the rest of the hifi chain as the dac or turnable quality are very important and often underated, etc.

If happy with KrK I will maybe look at the next quality step with Genelec ? https://www.stereophile.com/content/genelec-g-three-active-loudspeaker-specifications. Advantage and non the less : you can sold it which is never possible but the raw parts for a diy design.

Also an improvment in sound could come from a 3 ways but you are not telling so much about the room, budget, etc.

Whatever you do if cost is a question, try before to do the rigth math to avoid surprises. If it is a hobby then it is a hobby and the cost is becomming less important.
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Disabled Account
Joined 2023
Thanks for all your recommendations. I took the plunge and paid 60€s to get the plan for the Cinetor Evos.

If I'm being honest, looks are really important, and these look really close to the Buckhardt speaker I wish I could afford.

The room they'll be installed in is small. Listening distance will never be more than about 2/3 meters. I'll be listening to them at nearfield levels.

The cabinet build is extremely straightforward and I have a friend who's going to build them for me. The rest should be within my capabilities. I do lots of soldering and have all the equipment required, and I'm a (fine arts) painter. I've used lots of veneer in the past as well.

I ended up deciding against putting them on my bookshelves and will build some nice stands for them.

I already own a proper DAC, and was planning on buying a Loxjie A30 to drive the speakers while I save up for something better further down the road.

Depending on how they sound, I'll consider adding a sub eventually. But they will never ever need to play at 'rock the house' levels anyway. My room is very easy to fill with sounds already.
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Disabled Account
Joined 2023
Yes, that was the initial plan. Just as the KRKs are installed now. But I'll build some stands. I need more space for books anyway.
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