Driver Selections

JerMu

Member
2007-01-05 2:04 am
I am hoping to get some guidance towards what drivers I might use for a home theater system I am planning to build. I am relatively new to DIY speakers, I have been researching for a couple year now, built a sub of my own and have been planning to delve into a full system for my next project. The one thing I am running into is that i feel like the more I read the more the "rabbit hole" grows deeper in respect to things to keep in mind while selecting drivers / designing enclosures. My goal with this thread is to get some guidance from people with experience as to what good bang for your buck drivers are that might help narrow my search rather than just shooting in the dark at a seemingly endless array of drivers out there.

My design criteria right now is pretty broad, I would like to set up a 5.1 or 7.1 system (not fully decided yet) that will not only play music nicely but that a movie will sound good on too. I know there are some debates / problem areas with trying to do both, but I would like to get as close as I can with both, but with the emphasis on music if it does need to lean toward one discipline. I would also like the sensitivity of the system to reside somewhere above 90 db. I would also like for the drivers to be some what asthetically pleasing, but this is secondary to sound reproduction of course. I really dont' want to go over board with cost either, as cheap as I can get it while maintaining good sound is what I want to achieve I am willing to pay for good sound, but I don't need all the bells and whistles that make a speaker/system look good on paper but no one ever really can tell by hearing.

Any and all help is appreciated!

Thanks!

JerMu
 
JerMu,

Honestly, a set of fullrange drivers in horns might fill the bill rather well, depending on how large a cabinet you (or your "boss") can tolerate. The Half Chang Horn, on the fullrange side of this forum, used with the Pioneer wide range driver and an inexpensive tweeter crossed with a simple cap would probably give excellent results. There "are" many other options, of course, and choosing one is a hard task.
Good luck on your quest!

Best Regards,
TerryO
 

JerMu

Member
2007-01-05 2:04 am
I'm open to the full range discussion, but it is my understanding in what I've read so far that there is no way one speaker can properly replicate the full range. I had in mind that I would have two front tower (3-way) speakers with a center and surround speakers that match the tower speakers minus the woofer component. I thought this would more accurately replicate the sound spectrum, and provide the spl needed.

Just my thoughts, as I said I'm open to the discussion. That is my main goal here is to learn from experienced DIYers and use their insight in my selection.

Good sound (spl and sound production) + Good price = what I want :D I know there will be trade offs and that is what I hope to learn from you guys about.

/bump in hopes of getting more input

Thanks again for the help!
 
"Good sound (spl and sound production) + Good price = what I want I know there will be trade offs and that is what I hope to learn from you guys about."

You don't get good performance for peanuts. You should have a real budget or at least a good idea of what you can afford and realistic expectations of what to expect within that budget.

DIY is not neccesarilly cheaper depending on what you want to spend. You need drivers, crossovers and cabinets plus your time.

Rob:)
 

tinitus

Ex-Moderator R.I.P.
2005-11-24 1:47 am
Well, if you choose from the top of lets say TroelsGravesen it could very well end up in 5000USD with subs and all, maybe much more ... and a LOT of work to be done

At the other end Madisound has a LOKI kit with a Seas coax at 260USD with all parts needed ... I suppose 5 of those and maybe 3 or 4 subs would do fine


Or you may like some the Statement designs by Jim Holtz better, its all there

http://www.geocities.com/cc00541/index.html
 
JerMu-

/bump in hopes of getting more input

If you post your price range, it would be easier to recommend some decent drivers that would get the job done.

If you are really looking for 90+ dB sensitivity, you are probably looking at some rather largish boxes. I would recommend some nice WTW two ways, like the Seas Odin (but with more reasonably priced drivers.)

JJ
 
Brett said:
Will not even come close to decent dynamics or SPL.


JerMu said:
I'm open to the full range discussion, but it is my understanding in what I've read so far that there is no way one speaker can properly replicate the full range. I had in mind that I would have two front tower (3-way) speakers with a center and surround speakers that match the tower speakers minus the woofer component. I thought this would more accurately replicate the sound spectrum, and provide the spl needed.

Just my thoughts, as I said I'm open to the discussion. That is my main goal here is to learn from experienced DIYers and use their insight in my selection.

Good sound (spl and sound production) + Good price = what I want :D I know there will be trade offs and that is what I hope to learn from you guys about.

/bump in hopes of getting more input

Thanks again for the help!

You're both right, the ONLY speaker that will satisfy these objections is a multiway horn speaker. Absolutely nothing else can give you the spl and dynamics that is specified (well, actually it wasn't). So I would suggest at a minimum a K-Horn knockoff or perhaps an Oaris horn with a Lowther (or better) driver with a midbass horn and a couple of Labhorns for realistic dynamics and spls'. Some of Tom Danley's tapped horns may be better yet.

So forget any sort of MTM 2-way, three-way or anything with a direct radiating cone driver as they won't meet, or come close to meeting your criteria. The only problem is that little bit about "Good price", which should not really be a consideration if you're serious (and BTW, that *is* the trade-off.)

Maybe an "experienced DIY'er" can give you better advice.

TerryO
 
"You're both right, the ONLY speaker that will satisfy these objections is a multiway horn speaker. Absolutely nothing else can give you the spl and dynamics that is specified (well, actually it wasn't)."

You don't need an all horn system to hit THX levels. They don't use all horn systems in a movie theater. You want 105db not 125db

Rob :)
 

Brett

Member
2002-01-07 6:02 pm
TerryO said:
So I would suggest at a minimum a K-Horn knockoff or perhaps an Oaris horn with a Lowther (or better) driver with a midbass horn and a couple of Labhorns for realistic dynamics and spls'. Some of Tom Danley's tapped horns may be better yet.
My big horn system was similar to that in many ways. Now I've got modded KHorns in my small room and are considering some TH's (with the old LAB drivers) to flesh out the lower registers.
 
"Most theatres completely suck sonically so they're not a good benchmark. Something like the Drew Daniels system would be OK."

Not if its a larger JBL based THX set-up. Drew's system was 1 2245 2x 2227 1x 2123 and a 2450 per side.

A THX would be 2245 subs a gagle of 2225/2226's in pairs and large format compression drivers like 2445's on 2360 Horns for the fronts

Nothing to make lite off. Set up right the theater set-up could sound quite good and easilly deliver the goods

Rob:)
 
Just my 2¢ here, but if I wanted to build a good 3-way system, I would seriously look at a top knotch full-range driver for the midrange (say 400 Hz to 4KHz band) in it's own chamber, and then look for a good woofer and tweeter. The mids are, IMHO, the make-or-break for a good system. If the midrange band is fairly flat and accurate, then you have a good speaker.
 

JerMu

Member
2007-01-05 2:04 am
I don't see where a price point will really help in this discussion. I'm not asking to meet a certian price, I'm simply trying to get a good idea for what sort of drivers are consider good drivers and worth what you pay for them compared to other drivers. Since there are a large variety of drivers out there I'm just trying to narrow my options a bit. I am willing to pay for good sound, I just don't want to pay for features that no one except a computer can hear so I can brag to my friends that my system is better because... Time and Labor are not a factor for me as I'm familar with the task at hand and willing to put forth the effort. I'm simply at the begining stage of putting something together and need a little veteran advice as to what is a good purchase for my money and what is not worth the extra money.

I also don't have to meet my 90db request with one speaker we can use multiple drivers to acheive a higher db, I'm just looking for a quality vs cost comparision with you guys. I mean you gotta know of drivers that are utter crap, as well as what you'd get if you were wanting to put together a good system without going over board and just spending cash nilly billy.
 

tinitus

Ex-Moderator R.I.P.
2005-11-24 1:47 am
It is still not clear to me what it is you really want

As you didnt comment on the Jim Holtz speakers I suppose you are only here to find good drivers

Well, its not too hard to find good drivers, it a whole lot more difficult to make them work together
 

JerMu

Member
2007-01-05 2:04 am
Precisely, which is the first step in my project.

I am lost in a sea of "good" drivers and I was just hoping to get some veteran insight to help me pick. Once I make a selection I can then work on making them work together. I mean can I pick from any of the brands on PE or Madisound or are there better places to look? Is there something I should look out for? Just insight to finding a good driver is all I am wanting right now. I know from reading Loudspeaker Cookbook that there are a number of items to look for, but as I stated it seems that the more I read the more complicated the problem gets and I was just hoping for some experienced help in PICKING the drivers for now.

I affraid that if I take a stab at it all I'm going to get is "this driver would be better" or "that driver's off axis is garbage", I was just hoping that maybe a concensus of 10 or so drivers would float to the top of this thread and I could then pick from those rather than the hundreds on the net now. Maybe I need to just throw out some driver thoughts of my own and get the boards opinions with that. it just seems to make sense that the community as a whole would have a general consenus on what "good sound" for your buck would be and maybe there were some popular drivers that are used over and over because they are in fact good. I'm already in the process of trying to put something together, let me just get back with that and you guys can tell me what you think.
 
Since you don't seem to really know what you want, I'm going to try one last time. If you want a "great driver" instead of one of the many good drivers available (which is, BTW, of lesser importance than you seem to be aware of) I will give you the URL of a source for the "Best" and you can take it or leave it. There is plenty of documentation available so you won't have to bother with these forums afterwards.

The URL: http://www.greatplainsaudio.com/components.htm

Best Regards and Goodbye,
TerryO