First build: Markaudio CHR-70 Bass Reflex

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After trawling through many threads here and elsewhere, I decided to have a go at building a nice pair of speakers for my nearfield desk setup. I have a pair of small monitor now, but I wanted something a bit more snazzy, and I love to do a little DIY every now and then.

To have a good pair of speakers for the music I like to listen to at work (mainly light classical music) I settled on a full range design, to mitigate some of the directionality and tweeter sharpness I find rather annoying in my current set-up. I selected the Markaudio CHR-70 for looks, good reviews and forgiving characteristics for first-time builders, and, being a total n00b in the matter, I just picked the design on the Markaudio site that would fit my desk.

Without much further ado:

IMG_3882 by, on Flickr

Taping up the wood. I ordered some great ply from a guy that specialises in flight cases, but saws speaker wood on the side. Amazing quality stuff: straight, cuts right on spec and a lot more plies than at the hardware store. No voids so far and pretty faces on some of the pieces.
IMG_3874 by, on Flickr

Glueing (this is a dry run, but fit was good):
IMG_3875 by, on Flickr

Stain test. No fancy veneers on my first build, just some nice wood oil. Looks real good:
IMG_3876 by, on Flickr

Sealing the box:
IMG_4076 by, on Flickr

Acoustic foam lining:
IMG_4079 by, on Flickr

Next up is routing holes in the faces, mounting the drivers, drill some holes for the terminals and get some push-on connectors for the wiring.
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Easter holidays are keeping me... And I need to make a hole guide for my router. Unknown territory for me, the last time I did any significant woodwork was when I build push karts with my dad :p

I can understand...Spent my Easter holiday playing contractor at home, remodeling my kid's bedroom. To make the holes of my CHR70's I used the following:

1. Inexpensive (MDF is fine, Plywood might last 2 or 3 holes)

2. Mid (I have done approximately 10 holes in 12mm MDF and 13mm Plywood)

3. Expensive

These are good to do holes, but for flush mounting you will need a router. To do holes easily with router, Jasper has a couple of good template tools.
Markaudio CHR-70 by ctjr

Done! this is pre-staining, I'll probably add nothing more than a thin coat of furniture oil.

For those missing the port: it's on the back.

So far, first impressions are mostly positive, except the highs do suffer from some weird defect. There is a slight sibilance, almost like a lisp, on voices, if listened to with a lot of toe in. This largely disappears when reducing toe-in to ) degrees, but for the sake of a coherent soundstage, 15 degrees of toe-in or thereabouts works best.

Bass is surprisingly good for a desktop set up and the imaging is above reproach, the single driver mojo really does work.
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