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Advice on choosing the best 8 inch fullrange drivers?
Advice on choosing the best 8 inch fullrange drivers?
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Old 25th October 2018, 09:17 PM   #1
Jeffrey 01 is offline Jeffrey 01  United States
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Default Advice on choosing the best 8 inch fullrange drivers?

Hello everyone. I am looking at getting a new pair of 8 inch fullrange driver's. Here are the list of drivers I am looking at?

1. Audax AM21LB25ALBC driver's.
2. Visaton B-200 driver's.
3. Dayton Audio's PS-220-08 driver's.
4. Hemptone HT8FR-04 driver's.
5. Tang Band W8-1808 driver's.
6. Fostex F-200 A Driver's.
7. Mark Audio alpair 12p driver's.
8. Lowther driver's ( if they can be shipped to me )?

That's all of the 8 inch driver's I have my eyes on? If someone could give me advice on these driver's that would be great? Sound, set up and is it worth it to spend more money on certain driver's then other's? Thanks Jm

Update. I want to use them as a 2 channel set up. I will be using them for music and to go low as possible. If I need to add a sub I will after I build my speakers first. Jm

Last edited by Jeffrey 01; 25th October 2018 at 09:26 PM.
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Old 25th October 2018, 09:21 PM   #2
Lingwendil is offline Lingwendil  United States
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Advice on choosing the best 8 inch fullrange drivers?
What is the intended application, and how low do you want them to reach? We need to know how you want to use them to give you an idea of what would be most suitable.
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Old 25th October 2018, 09:53 PM   #3
mortron is offline mortron  Canada
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I have owned the Visaton B200 and used them in an open baffle setup. In addition, they had the Planet 10 phase plugs installed. Quality built drivers that could take lots of power, but still efficient enough for small tube amps.

A quality driver with a great tone for sure. That said, I found the highs a bit lacking for my tastes, and the directivity of a full ranger of this size has its limitations. Originally the drivers were said to sound shouty in spots, but had not listened to them without phase plugs, so I can only imagine what was meant. They definitely seemed well behaved with a phase plug. I would not shy away from the 8 inch full range driver, as I feel the size of the cone has merits, but be cautioned that there may be some areas that aren't as satisfying for some. I would be inclined to consider drivers that employ a phase plug or have really good highs off axis.

Of all the drivers listed the Audax is the only one I haven't really heard of, and my reading tells me that many of the drivers you're considering are of good quality and would be worth trying based on my reading.
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Old 25th October 2018, 10:16 PM   #4
planet10 is offline planet10  Canada
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Advice on choosing the best 8 inch fullrange drivers?
8” is bigger than i usually like.

Some comments:
I do like the B200 but only with phase plugs (as per mortron). Need to be in an OB or a big aperiodic box (i’m not a big OB fan, i intend on putting my B200 in a big aperiodic box.

Looks like you can still find the Hemp Acoustics. A decent driver, but the manufacture screwed a lot of people.

Similarly, F200A might be hard to find, an excellent driver.

I find the W8-1808 kinda coloured and overpriced IMO.

The Alpair 12/12p/12pw are all 6.5” drivers. Probably at the top of the list you posted. even lacking a bit of top end i prefer the A12pw.

I did a pair of PS220 and i really liked them (limited listening time on these).

Lowthers are in a whole different price range… i’d spend that money on a smaller FR and helper woofer(s).

dave
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Old 25th October 2018, 10:18 PM   #5
classicalfan is offline classicalfan  United States
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You should also add to your list Audio Nirvana 8" Super (phase plug and whizzer), 8" Super Plus (phase plug and camel humps - no whizzer), and 8" Classic (no additions). Choose from subtle differences in sound according on your listening preferences. All high quality products.


I'm using 10" Classics and am very happy with them.
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Old 25th October 2018, 10:19 PM   #6
planet10 is offline planet10  Canada
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Advice on choosing the best 8 inch fullrange drivers?
Quote:
but had not listened to them without phase plugs, so I can only imagine what was meant.
ref B200. Phase plugs go a long way to taming the top end, in a stock driver, if on axis you are really drilled by the top end, if off axis you start wondering about adding a (ribbon in my case) tweeter.

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Old 25th October 2018, 10:21 PM   #7
planet10 is offline planet10  Canada
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Advice on choosing the best 8 inch fullrange drivers?
Quote:
Originally Posted by classicalfan View Post
...10” Classics...
I have only heard the old AN 8” it was no star.

I did a set of Classic 10: and found the ringing in the top painful. The standard 10” ferrite cast baskets i heard had potential, but i felt were over-priced.

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Old 26th October 2018, 01:30 AM   #8
Jeffrey 01 is offline Jeffrey 01  United States
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Wow alot of useful info. Thanks for the insightful help. I have heard alot of good things about the visaton B-200. I was looking at the A.N. driver's but the recent price hike drove me away. I will look into a few of these driver's and what I will use them for and update as soon as I have them in my hands. Cheers JM
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Old 26th October 2018, 06:54 AM   #9
classicalfan is offline classicalfan  United States
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Some of these have whizzers; others like AN Classic and MA do not. That's something you might want to consider.

The pricing on the ANs should not be a factor. With ferrite magnets the Super 8" is $125, the 8" Super Plus is $175, and the 8" Classic is $187.50. That's considerably less than some of the models you listed, and very competitive with Dayton and MA.
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Old 26th October 2018, 03:49 PM   #10
Scottmoose is offline Scottmoose  United Kingdom
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Trying to compare is difficult as the drivers (no apostrophe required ) are all rather different from each other, so it depends exactly what you want to be doing.

-The Alpair 12P is actually a 6 1/2in driver, not an 8in. A very good unit and quite flexible, but smaller than the others, albeit with a significantly higher linear travel.

-The B200 was primarily designed for OB use and sealed boxes; it's very good within this context, albeit improved with the addition of a central plug, but not ideal for other roles. Can be done, but takes a bit of effort.

-The F200a is no longer produced; an excellent driver but now 2nd hand only, except in the unlikely event you can find someone with NOS.

-Lowther ship all over the world so I see no reason why you couldn't obtain a pair. Note that each model is quite distinct, and available with either 8ohm or 15ohm coils in aluminium or silver. This is not 'just because': the coil material has a major impact on both the response behaviour and T/S behaviour. If unsupported with dedicated LF units and high passed, Lowthers are really best suited to horn variations due to their short VC gap & limited travel. They can be used in other enclosure types, but the price is reduced practical SPLs / dynamic range.

-The W8-1808 is reasonably flexible & can be used in a variety of box types; another option is its 1772 stablemate with more motor power.

-Hemptone are a bit of an unknown; I'm not even sure the company is still in business / selling drivers to the DIY market. From fallible memory their 8in units fell into a fairly average bracket in spec. terms so were moderately flexible though not spectacularly so.

-The Audax is a bit of an unknown at present; IIRC Madisound have only recently started carrying it. Fairly classical example of this type of 8in whizzer cone widebander; looks reasonable for what it is and no more or less workable than some others. Should be reasonably flexible.

As some have noted, there are other units out there, such as the Audio Nirvanas, and Fostex's current 8in units are worth looking at also depending on how much you want to spend & what you intend doing.
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