Full Ranger in a "large" room?

Full Ranger in a "large" room?

Good morning all!
I have been reading here for many years so to say I am a "newb" might not be an exact truth. I have a question that I am hoping for feedback on though. I know everyone will want the standard questions answered first so I will start there.

I like all kinds of music. I listen primarily to old rock and some synthesized types of music (IE pop, house, dance etc) but I love to kick back with some smooth jazz or light music just the same. I have built (literally) thousands of car audio systems and competed with them for nearly two decades. My mantra is to always make a system that is versatile which usually means a lot of headroom.

I was present at hornfest this year and had the pleasure of sampling Ed's little speakers there before this as well and I was very impressed with what I heard as my first "full range" speaker. So much so that I purchased a pair of FE126Es and decided to begin looking for cabinets.
To date, the most impressive sound (to me) has come from a pair of heavily modified Decware radial speakers that had a radial driver accompanied by a 126. These would be a Transmission line speaker that was loaded with a passive radiator (I don't like radiators, but loved these speakers). The bass was the most realistic I have heard to date.
I will be driving these with a T-amp to start with and some time next year I plan on buying a tube amp. I am still undecided on which amp, but am leaning heavily towards a Decware SE34I.2 right now. THis is subject to change if the speakers are suitably efficient enough to be driven with a smaller SET like the select or other versions.
I love the disappearing act of the radial design and would like something that can produce that sort of awesome center and separation at the same time. I even built a set of computer speakers that utilized a conical membrane and the imaging from these is great in near-field, but not practical for a room full of sound.

I also have a pair of Silver FLute 8" wool cones for use and I am willing to entertain using either or both drivers or using the 8" in a sub enclosure or even scrapping these to go with another sub if necessary. As you can see, I'm flexible.

Here is what I am after. I have a room that is 22' x 13ft. I want to situate it so that the speakers are firing down the long direction. The listening position would be about 12 ft from the front wall. I like to get my music very loud on occasion. The 100db that Ed's speakers were capable of is far and away loud enough. I would like to have some headroom if I use a sub in order to be able to use this as my home theater speakers as well. The sub will have a plate amp to run and I can work with it separately if that is the best way. No SS receiver or processor for movies, though. Just two channels and a sub if I so choose to add it I guess.

The end question is this. For the ability to listen, would you guys recommend the Frugal horn for the 126 (or something similar) and then just a standard sub configuration using the 8"ers I have? Or would the BIB enclosure work better for the 126 in this application?
I like the idea of using the unobstructed ceiling rather than corner loading to the rear. I have thought of using the BIB design and loading the 8"ers into the bass on the side and bi-amping. Something tells me that this idea won't be the most accepted and I can think of lots of reasons already.

Any ideas gang? I appreciate all you guys do here and have used and passed on many things learned over the years.

Take care,
Robert
 
Hmm. A 126 would not be my automatic choice in a room that size, even supported.

Sticking with that driver, something in the nature of Ron's A126 or the frugel-horns should do as well as anything loaded right against walls or better, into corners. An upward venting BIB would be too short to properly couple with the room, so I'd forget that one. Saburo should do a decent job too with the chamber volume reduced to 2.25 litres. Then bring the 8in units in at whatever point you feel like.

The ~ideal IMO though would be to run the 126s sealed or aperiodic XO at either 200Hz or 500Hz with 15in woofers in support below that. YMMV.
 
Wow,

Thanks Scott,

That was certainly not the answer I was expecting. I like the idea of a stereo pair of subs in the room and I can accomplish that pretty easy.

I was thinking my room is actually a bit smaller than Ed's and his little horns pumped out plenty of volume in the "pink" room lol.

I would actually prefer to use the 8"ers as my main speaker and the 126s as the high range. I am conflicted with opinions on whether to do a single driver full range or mix-n-match something.

Anybody want to do some driver swapping? I would truly love to do some sort of corner horn design. (My wife and I just have an affinity for corner horns for some reason. I was even thinking of taking one of the bvr designs and adapting it to a corner horn style somehow.

I think for the room, the Fostex 8" would be a better choice. Or maybe use the silver Flutes in a BIB if they would work. I could do something like that and use the 126 in a sealed chamber crossed over something like 500hz?

Or maybe swap out the 4 drivers I have for something better. Any single driver suggestions for a room the size I have?

Thanks Scott, yours is definitely one of the opinions I was looking for.

Take care,
Robert
 
I use a pair of rons Austin 166 corner horns, (with supra baffles & corner deflectors) in a similar sized room.
http://www.frugal-horn.com/ronhorns.html
They work good w/ Decware Select & great w/ Eddie Vaughn designed 6C45 Spud or PP EL84 amps.
Have volume (and bass) to spare with PP EL84.
Fill the whole house with music.
Flat to 40 Hz, then smooth, gradual roll-off.
Sometimes run a pair of Linkwitz Transformed 18s, (usually off the same amps), crossed in ~40Hz. You don't notice subs until you unplug them, but they're good for pipe organ, synth.
I actually like these (Austins) better than Decware or Klipsch corner horns, if you've heard either of them.
And not as difficult a build.
The FE108ES-II Super Swans are great in small rooms, but these are my favorite single driver, & favorite BLH. (for whatever that's worth) :D
Robert :)
edit:
if you liked radials that much, this thread might be interesting; second page or so, and on through it:
http://www.diyaudio.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=100390&highlight=
I heard some MBLs @ RMAF a few months ago... amazing...
 
Thanks Robert,

My wife and I just built this house. I had a much smaller room when I purchased the 126Es so I wasn't sure where I would be headed with this when I started. I still like what I have heard of the drivers although all but one pair were modified from stock. The 166 and 167s seem to be a good fit for this size room and I can't remember ever hearing a bad review on the Ron Horns.

Speaking of the radials: I absolutely loved those things. My wife has seen and heard the 1.5s and is begging me to either give up on it till I can afford a pair or figure out a way to make something like one. I like the RL3s as well, but the models that were modded to work with the 126 have impressed me the most. I really like the disappearing sound. Here is a pic of my first attempt at a computer speaker that actually seems to work pretty well. I just finished these yesterday, but I have about 5 hours of listening in now and I am pretty impressed with the imaging they have. They break up enough that I know I won't be able to make a full size speaker with this type of design so I am back to trying to figure out what to do in "the room" lol.

[IMGDEAD]https://i17.photobucket.com/albums/b52/musgofasa/IMG_2221.jpg[/IMGDEAD]

These things sound good, but they break up some at high volume. They are terrific at low volume. Of course, with a 2" driving diaphragm, they need a woofer. My little PC never sounded so good lol.

Interesting read on the other thread too. I will be busy there for a while.
Thanks!
Robert
 
These started out as an experiment with the ideas from Steve's "Personal Planar" speakers. The idea was to see if a sealed back speaker mounted to an expanding flare could drive a membrane in a conical shape. I wanted an omni directional speaker that did not have to be adjusted to the perfect height. Sitting at face level on my desk and playing at low volumes, they work great. I have been listening to them for 3.5 hours straight and I am not tired in the least. Of course, if I crank them up, they start getting harder to listen to. They will probably do 80db or so before they get harder to listen to. They still sound pretty good even there though.

Thanks for the previous link on the omni directional speakers. I am working on my wood working shop now. It will probably be a couple of months before I have all my tools set up since I am waiting on that quarterly bonus to pay for the big Table saw I have been without for so many years. I do have a router though and working with round pieces and sono tube is an idea I can work with. I am thinking of making a tube about 40" tall broken into two sections. The lower section coming to about 26" high with the Wool cones mounted inverted and the upper section either sealed or ported for the 126 and making a round baffle to the front for the 126. I already have a set of caps for this configuration and I could have it thrown together in a weekend no problem. Plus tube is cheap here.

I like the looks of the Ron Horn. You think the 126 Ron Horn would put out more low end than the Frugal? I have heard very good reviews on the frugal. Having heard the Hornshoppe horns, I don't really need more bass than that from the speakers. I just want really good imaging. I like that solid center and ability to bring a wide spatial stage. I think that is what took me about the radials. I never thought I was listening to a speaker when the lights were off.

Thanks!
Robert
 
musgofasa said:
You think the 126 Ron Horn would put out more low end than the Frugal? I have heard very good reviews on the frugal. Having heard the Hornshoppe horns, I don't really need more bass than that from the speakers. I just want really good imaging. I like that solid center and ability to bring a wide spatial stage. I think that is what took me about the radials. I never thought I was listening to a speaker when the lights were off.
Thanks!
Robert
I haven't heard either, but I've read every thing I could about both for the last couple years, before deciding on building the A166s.
Maybe Dave or Chrisby will chime in, I'm just echoing what they've reported, having heard them both in the same room.

Another DIY Walsh-driver link you might be interested in:
http://www.audiodesignguide.com/full/conus1.html

For a REAL OMNI, have you ever heard mbl Radialstrahler 101Es?
http://www.mbl-usa.com/
http://www.stereophile.com/floorloudspeakers/1004mbl/
only 81dB, & stupid expensive, but unlike anything I've ever heard.
Robert :)
 
musgofasa said:
Wow,

Thanks Scott,

That was certainly not the answer I was expecting. I like the idea of a stereo pair of subs in the room and I can accomplish that pretty easy.

I was thinking my room is actually a bit smaller than Ed's and his little horns pumped out plenty of volume in the "pink" room lol.

I would actually prefer to use the 8"ers as my main speaker and the 126s as the high range. I am conflicted with opinions on whether to do a single driver full range or mix-n-match something.

Anybody want to do some driver swapping? I would truly love to do some sort of corner horn design. (My wife and I just have an affinity for corner horns for some reason. I was even thinking of taking one of the bvr designs and adapting it to a corner horn style somehow.

I think for the room, the Fostex 8" would be a better choice. Or maybe use the silver Flutes in a BIB if they would work. I could do something like that and use the 126 in a sealed chamber crossed over something like 500hz?

Or maybe swap out the 4 drivers I have for something better. Any single driver suggestions for a room the size I have?

Thanks Scott, yours is definitely one of the opinions I was looking for.

Take care,
Robert

You're welcome!

Hmm. I respect Ed, & enjoy our occasional discussions, although I'm fairly certain his opinion of me is not so much low as subterranean -make of that what you will. Yes, small drivers will go loud. And I love their midrange. What bothers me are their ability to handle LF transients at ~live levels, because without support, they can't. As you're staple musical diet appears to be of the heavier persuasion, that gives a general direction to head in. In a room of your size, and assuming we can't go to extremes of big woofers etc. at this time, then I'd look at two options.

1) Get the 126s into horns (the Frugel-horn, or Ron's A126), and use your other drivers in some form of bass extender. You don't say specifically which they are, so I can't make a specific suggestion as yet.

2) Sell all four on, and shift to 8in FR units, and either get them into pipe-horns (BIBs -an ideal situation I suspect) or a good pair of more complicated boxes -preferably of a horn persuasion. Something like Chang might do you nicely. Equally, an ideal situation.

Both have their positive points & downsides, so YMMV, really.
 
Thanks Scott,

These are the 8" speakers I am currently in possession of:

http://www.madisound.com/catalog/product_info.php?manufacturers_id=150&products_id=848

Ed has a personality and certainly an opinion. From what I have heard of his speakers, I don't think I would be disappointed with a similar design aided by a subwoofer. For the listening levels I prefer, I think a good sub might be in order. I have only been exposed to full range 2 channel and tube amps as recently as this year and was VERY impressed with what I got to hear. I have been learning a lot about sound reproduction since then. To be honest, it wasn't until I went to Bob Zeigler's home and then to Hornfest that I would've believed that any single driver could sound good much less great. Having come from pro audio venues (IE Live concerts) and then car audio, I have always been on the side of high power, multi driver setups and crossover design. The idea of a speaker with no crossover and little piston area creating such sound was foreign to me and it took some convincing. I still smile when I go to a theater with a digital sound system that shakes the chairs though. The thing is, I was blown away more than once listening to some good hi-fi gear this year. I am a proponent of less is more and the simple things in life being the best. Hence my start to produce a speaker similar to the radial or the horn.

Enough of my life's story. The reason for the question was a post I saw today about someone having a room about the size of mine and stating that their speakers just weren't enough for the space. I am perfectly willing to invest in large volume cabs. WAF is very little issue. My wife helped me run my car audio business for years and she loves music about as much as I do. She even helps me build. This was why I started looking at the BIB as an option. I loved the radial's speed and more so it's ability to be undefinable. If I closed my eyes I literally couldn't point to the speaker and I thought that was very special indeed. Even with the 126 performing the directional HF duty, I was very amazed at that.

When I am finished with my wood shop, no small amount of saw dust will be devoted to the project. I am not afraid to cut up wood to find out what works best. The entertainment center and large tube television will be going next year as well so the front wall of the listening room will be unhindered with obstructions between cabinets. Do you think the silver flutes would work well in a horn or BIB type enclosure to start off? I will build the sono styled speaker next weekend as I already have all the materials to do this and it should be a quick, easy build while I am working on something else. I had thought to do a single sub with a 12 or 15 inch driver, but I might just do them stereo. I had thought to try my hand at a tapped horn for that idea too. I am certain I will be building one of those next year just for kicks. I like to experiment. I will be amazed if I end up finding something I leave for any extended period of time, lol

Thanks for the input gang. If you would like to make suggestions on speakers to try or cabs to build that should work extremely well in this room, feel free to give me something to work on. My woodworking skills are good and my math skills are better. If I have a road to follow, you can count on me taking it as far as I can. I built no few record holding car stereos over the years out of creativity. I am sure I will apply myself equally as strong now that I have grown up some so to speak.

Take care,
Robert
 
Vix said:
For the big room, Martin's Open Baffles may be a good choice. On the other hand, you may be the first to build the "monster" BiB, with Visaton B200. As far as a know, nobody built them yet, but it seems that you'll hardly find any fullrange driver that goes that low....

http://www.zillaspeak.com/bib-visaton.asp


The Visaton is certainly a good speaker, but they can be much better if you add some of Dave's Planet 10 phase plugs. Having heard a pair (mounted on Open Baffles!) this summer at the 4th Annual Vancouver Island DIY Meet, I can certainly attest to the fact that they perform and sound very good. Has anyone done an Enabled pair yet?

Best Regards,
TerryO
 
If you like the Ed Horns, then you'll love the Frugel-Horn. Your room setup is really good for using the corners.

Extend the deflectors backward and upward until you have enuff volume to get the 8" to have a sealed Q between 0.5 & 0.6. Put them on the back of the deflector firing into the corner. Room gain should get you bass down to Fs and you might actually have to roll it off. If you get creative you might be able to make a deflector shaped BIB.

In the 1st case the woofer is hidden, and could be in the second case. Tell people they are special room treatment... "WOW, i didn't think a 4" could do bass like that!!!" :)

HP the FHs at 65-80 Hz* with a 1st order PLLXO, and a good plate amp on each woofer.

(the higher you cross, the louder you can play before strain)

And treat the drivers.

dave
 
Thanks Dave,

That is what I would call a "large" room, lol. I didn't think my room was especially large until I got to reading around here only to find that most people seem to be using rooms in the 10x12 ft range.

Considering the double duty my room will play with the TV mounted on the wall right between the speakers and needing some serious LFE support for movies, I figured I would build the listening speakers in such a way that I could listen with or without the sub. I honestly didn't think the little Silver Flutes would produce much impact, but I figure they would be terrific for music which is what I want most.
A BIB shaped deflector sounds like one cool idea and a heck of a way to integrate both speakers. I will read up on the "how to build a BIB" page and see if I can figure out a way to make that happen. I have no problem with a tall enclosure. I do have 8' ceilings though, so I can only go so tall in the corners. My wife likes this idea a lot and I like the looks of the level 2b build on the FH. (I like the cut out, but I will have to play with ideas for a supra baffle. That big square one doesn't do it for us. The star isn't bad, but I have another idea yet that I might run by you guys)

I am concerned about messing up my drivers by doing the treatments. I don't mind doing stuff to the baskets, but the cone scares me. I have built everything from cars to airplanes to full blown HT rooms out of wood, metal, fiberglass, and you name it, but for some reason, I get glue everywhere. If I can clean it up, good, but if I messed up and got something in the VC on those drivers I would never forgive myself, lol. Perhaps I will play with these and then when I decide on a cab, I could purchase a pair of treated ones later. Thanks for the advice guys!


Merry Christmas!!!!!!!!!!!!

Robert