Favourite Fostex 8"

Hi,

I'd like to build a nice first fullrange speaker. Thing is, which one to choose ?

The more I search (and believe me, I did), the more I get confused. Budget is not really fixed, but has to be reasonable, say 600 EUR, can stretch if it's worth it.

Since there is no such thing as the best speaker, I thought I'd tackle it in a statistical way and let the forum decide.

To make things (slightly) easier, I thought I'd stick to an 8" Fostex. Maybe not necessarily the best decision, but there you are.

Candidates are all currently produced 8"-ers. Tweeters (like for the 208E Sigma) are okay, but could be a problem budgetwise.

What is your favourite, in which enclosure type and why ?

My goal is to at least come up with a shortlist of fantastically sounding speakers that can fit into a normal living space (Kleinhorns might be THE thing, but if my wife throws me out, they're too heavy to drag along while looking for a suitable campsite).

Music : omnivore, favourites jazz and lounge
Amplification : KT88 and SS
Current speakers : AOS 24 and Hatt MkIII

Gert
 
There's four that fit that price-range; the FE206E, the FE207E, the FE208ESigma and the FF225K.
What you buy depends very much on what sort of speaker you want to build: Horn, Bass-reflex, or some form of Transmission-Line. As it's a first project, I'd advise keeping things as simple as possible (it saves money and time).
Avoid the FE208ESigma: it costs a fortune and really does need that tweeter, which could well push it out of your price range.
I have yet to figure out a use for the FF225K: it's Q is spectacularly low -even lower than the well-regarded FE206E. That would be a great choice if you want a horn, but remember that a) you mentioned you have a 'normal' living space, and horns are very bulky, and b) it's not much cop in other enclosures -Q is still too low and would need some series resistance to be practical in most other enclosures, plus heavy BSC.
Of the lot, I'd choose the FE207E. It would slot neatly into several types of cabinet, two good bets being a Straight Mass-Loaded Transmission-Line (MLTL), or a Mass-Loaded Tapered Quarter Wave Tube (ML TQWT). You can also make an interesting double bass-reflex enclosure for them. Have a look at Martin King's website (www.quarter-wave.com) in the projects section. This is probably a good bet -nice and simple for a first project, and very good sounding too (I've built a pair recently for a friend).
Best
Scott
 

Nelson Pass

The one and only
Paid Member
2001-03-29 12:38 am
If you can stand to use a tweeter at 10KHz or so and above,
the FE208E Sigma truly is the better driver, and since the FE206E
top end is not that great, you might want a tweeter with it
anyway. Fostex makes some very nice tweeters to match
the FE208E Sigma, but all this is significantly more expensive
than the FE206E alone, but still looks to be within your budget.

If you choose the FE208E Sigma, I usually use a 1 mH coil to
roll the top end of it.
 
ScottG said:
Kloss (typically on the Hi Eff. board of the Audio Asylum) has tried most of them and says that the (regular production) most expensive (the F200 A) is the best overall (particularly if you have amplification that extends beyond 8 watts a channel).

http://www.madisound.com/cgi-bin/index.cgi?cart_id=7976155.24303&pid=319


He's probably correct. Not having heard it, I can't comment, other than to say I iwould like to, but I can say this: if you can find a new pair of these for 600euros, you're a lucky man. Same goes for the 208ESigma -in the price-range, but then it needs a tweeter, which will push it over, and it also only works in horns, which don't suit all living spaces too well. That's why I'd still favour the FE207E -it isn't too expensive for a first project, and unlike the FE206E it works well in a variety of enclosures. Depends on the size of the room, confidence in building and wallet really.
Best
Scott
 
After some careful investigation, a front horn clearly was out of the question, but a backloaded horn (size Fostex recommended enclosure) might be acceptable, especially if I decorate it with some flowery paintings and stipulate that the horn mouth can double as a display case. (showing images in the right order is clearly relevant :D )



Would it be worth it to put the driver in a horn instead of in a MLTL or ML TQWT ? Is there a qualitative gain ? I'm not afraid of some woodwork, afterall my current speakers are also DIY and made it to my living room.

Visaton´s B200 and Fostex FX200 are worth looking into

FX200 is no longer available AFAIK and I really would like to stick to Fostex, given the very positive feedback I've read.


Fostex makes some very nice tweeters to match

Would a Fostex tweeter be needed or could it be replaced with something less expensive ( e.g. Beyma CP-21 )
 
I use the FE208E Sigma with the Aurum Cantus 2si ribbon tweeters in my Basszilla Platinums. I don't have experience with other Fostex drivers, but the combo sounds great to me.

I decided I wanted to use tweeters from the beginning, and I also wanted the 8" for the efficiency. Often the 208 is critisized, but mainly for its lack of high end. Since I wanted to use it for a wide range driver- not a full range, then that wasn't an issue. The tweeter also takes care of disperson issues with a large midrange.

You could order Dick Olshers Basszilla Platinum plans for $20 and use his crossover he designed to work with the 208 and the 2si.

Just ignore his crossover and box for the 15" driver the Basszilla uses instead of a horn, and use a back horn for the bass instead.

The 2si tweet is miles better than the FT17 Fostex tweeter. (and more expensive.)

Here in the USA, 2 FE208 Sigmas are $350 and a pair of the 2si's are about $180, which is much less that $600 euros, In fact you could also get the crossover components and still stay under 600
 

ScottG

Member
2003-02-04 12:23 am
US
Scottmoose said:



He's probably correct. Not having heard it, I can't comment, other than to say I iwould like to, but I can say this: if you can find a new pair of these for 600euros, you're a lucky man. Same goes for the 208ESigma -in the price-range, but then it needs a tweeter, which will push it over, and it also only works in horns, which don't suit all living spaces too well. That's why I'd still favour the FE207E -it isn't too expensive for a first project, and unlike the FE206E it works well in a variety of enclosures. Depends on the size of the room, confidence in building and wallet really.
Best
Scott

Considering that the dollar is weak in comparison to the euro (around 1.30-1), that would just be at the upper limit of his price range and the driver doesn't need a super tweeter, goes considerably lower in freq., and doesn't need a complex cabinet. Note though that shipping will be higher and there may be duties and/or VAT..
 
FYI, 208 Sigma is about 200 EUR (so that equates to 260 US$, at the current rate) , FT17 50EUR, T90 170EUR and T900 you don't want to know. These are all prices for 1 piece.

The reason for the big price difference with the US is obviously because every single electronics item sold in Europe is goldplated on the inside. ;)

600 EUR is not that much with our prices.

Gert
 
timolien said:
After some careful investigation, a front horn clearly was out of the question, but a backloaded horn (size Fostex recommended enclosure) might be acceptable, especially if I decorate it with some flowery paintings and stipulate that the horn mouth can double as a display case. (showing images in the right order is clearly relevant :D )

Would it be worth it to put the driver in a horn instead of in a MLTL or ML TQWT ? Is there a qualitative gain ? I'm not afraid of some woodwork, afterall my current speakers are also DIY and made it to my living room.

FX200 is no longer available AFAIK and I really would like to stick to Fostex, given the very positive feedback I've read.

Would a Fostex tweeter be needed or could it be replaced with something less expensive ( e.g. Beyma CP-21 )

Stick with Fostex tweeters -they're a better match, though others can be acceptable.
Quality improvement going from a TL type to horn? Depends on what you call 'quality', and what drivers you ultimately use. I would say no; not unless you also have subs -a decent TL will always go lower than a horn of reasonable proportions, and probably suffer from less colouration too. That's just my take though. It's a trade-off really: the horn will be more efficient, the TL will probably have a smoother response and almost certainly go lower (if it doesn't, something in the design has gone pear-shaped). Your choice. I'm not knocking horns -far from it, but I'd go with the TL types for a first project. If you do, and can cope with the postage price for the F200a, then go with these drivers, and try building Bob Brines FTA-2000 design -either from the plans on his site, or from a full set -he only charges $25, and that would be money well spent. You won't find a better cabinet for these drivers IMO.
If that's too much: FE207E every time. Either Martin's excellent free design, or ask Bob for a set of plans for his LT-2000 -designed for Lowthers and also this driver. Again, I doubt you'd regret it.
Best
Scott
 
Soo, 2 FE208E Sigmas is 400 Euros, That leaves 200 for the Aurum Cantus 2si's . I believe that they aren't too expensive in Europe. you will have to check. As I mentioned, the AC ribbons are vastly superior to the Fostex Ft 17 tweeters and match the sound of the 208 quite well IMHO. I agree that a dome tweeter probably wouldn't sound that good. Also it would be hard to find a dome that has the efficiency of the Fostex 208, but the ribbon AC's are about the same efficiency. Its quite possible that the more expensive Fostex tweeters sound great, but they are VERY expensive....

Or you could just get the 206 or 207 initially they are relatively very cheap
 
So I went for the FE208E Sigma, coupled with the FT96H.

They are currently playing on OB where they already produce an astonishing result. Amazing sound comes from these things. There is a large difference whether they are fed from SS or from the KT88 tube amp, much more so than with my previous speakers. Bass is certainly acceptable (size matters, no matter what they say)

I will put them in the Fostex recommended BLH eventually, but that may take a while.

FYI, they play in the attic now. The slightly room-friendlier BLH might make it to our living room, but certainly not these. On the other hand, my wife was impressed with the sound.

Regards,

Gert
 

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I think I come a little bit late, but if you anyway needed a tweeter, I would have choosen the FX200 with the cheap FT17H tweeter. The FX-series have a particular membrane which has a texture that is really strange, there are sorts of "grains" on it, giving it a jowel aspect. I think it might contribute to the perfect transparency of the reproduction. The details level is amazing compared to any of the "banana cone" (Fe series) and the sound isn't tiring at all, unlike the Fe series I heard.

Unfortunately, the FX200 is discontinued so I think you did a good choice. I never heard any 8" Sigma, though I found 4" Sigma quite nice as surrounds in a friend's Hometheater.
 

adason

Member
Paid Member
2004-11-10 8:31 pm
Maryland
hi timolien

wellcome to wonderfull sound of ob

i know that is just your temporary arrangement, but if you decide to stay with ob, you might want to put speakers of center, it helps
the other thing is that further away from the back wall, the better

just one more suggestion, consider ob for midrange and put it on box with subwoofers, kind of like dick olshers basszila
that way ob is lot smaller, bass is definitely better, still you have clean ob midrange plus good looking speaker suitable for livingroom

enjoy
ed
 
FX200 is no longer available AFAIK and I really would like to stick to Fostex, given the very positive feedback I've read.
http://www.spectrumaudio.de/
Go "Produkte", "Breitbandlautsprecher" then on to the Fostex models.
FX200 costs 169€, F208Esigma 201€.
Think the one that is out of production is the F200 but I´m not sure.

In case you find the prices attractive: The shop owner is very nice to deal with.

greets
 
Gert:
Congratulations! You somehow made sense out of all the suggestions
I haven't heard that tweeter, but I think upgrading from the FT17 is the right thing to do. BUT I just realized that I crossed my tweeter/208 MUCH lower than people normally do for the 208 so perhaps that was
putting extra stress on the FT17.

Anyway, you made some good choices and if you ever try to make them acceptable for downstairs, they are very attractive, which might help.

Are you now living upstairs? That was very generous of your wife to only make you live up there instead of throwing you out of the house.

Putting the driver off center can help, but in your case, it is in effect off center because the baffle is on the floor and the baffle is close to a wall. You could probably tune the bass some by putting the baffle up agains the wall on the side, and then moving it closer and further away.

In a small space like that, you should buy some of the eggcrate textured foam and piut squares of it on the sides and back walls of the room behind the baffles.Just a few pieces will help

Anyway, good job- sorry abiut the budget!!
 
The last 2 days I have been playing lots of CDs through them, and I must say, they image wonderfully.

adason, I will certainly not throw away the baffles after burn-in. While building the BLHs - I definitely want to try them- I have ample time to evaluate them as OB drivers. I have a sub standing there anyway (My HT setup is at the opposite side of from where I took the picture in my previous post) I'll hook it up to the Fostexes (everyone agrees to this plural ? English is not my native tongue). I thought Fostex drivers were not so popular as OB drivers. Is everybody else mistaken in that notion ?

Variac, the tweeter is crossed at 10k now, but I have some other caps and I will try some other crossover points. The space is small, but there's a fairly long slope behind the baffles. At ground level, I guess there's about 1.5 meters of carpet behind them.
Bass is not ultra deep, but the quality of it is very good indeed. I can hardly believe they can get better after break-in.

Gert