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Multi-Way Conventional loudspeakers with crossovers

Small Syns
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Old 3rd March 2017, 05:23 AM   #301
sphykik is offline sphykik  United States
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Good and bad news.

Bad first - I'm 99% I have a bad faitalpro driver Have checked wiring twice and the other one is working, and they're wired to the same terminal block. I'll take it out and make sure tomorrow, but I'll most likely have to get it replaced under warranty. Should have checked before, I suppose.

Good news - even with the dud driver, these things sound amazing. They "bring instruments in" better than any speaker I've had in my living room. I haven't had much time to listen, but so far I've run through my standard multi-genre test tracks (Groundation, Hiatus Kaiyote, Tuomas Holopainen, Carmina Burana, Opeth, Katatonia, Metallica) and been very impressed.

They sound totally different than the Equator D5s (coxial studio monitor) I've been using over the last few months. Part of it is that the D5s fall apart when you're further than ~5-6ft away, but the Syns just sound so much.... bigger? Detailed? "Coherent." Reminds me more of a quality PA speaker, but without the inherent problems. The synergy effect is really astonishing.

Right away I noticed subtle panning in tracks that I've heard a number of times. Distorted guitars sound a lot more like a cab in the room. Voices pop out, and ambient reverb/room noise seems to become a part of my room.

My old Klipsch towers don't even come close.

Bravo Bill - these things really do sound outstanding to my ears, and just... different? Refreshing I think is the word.

Greatly looking forward to getting the dead speaker replaced and listening more after some burn-in. I'll get some more photos up soon as well.

Thanks again for your assistance throughout this process, and for the killer design!

-Damian

Last edited by sphykik; 3rd March 2017 at 05:27 AM.
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Old 3rd March 2017, 05:36 AM   #302
bwaslo is offline bwaslo  United States
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Thanks Damian.

The Unity/Synergy effect is really something isn't it? Danley really came up with something there.
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Old 3rd March 2017, 03:56 PM   #303
sphykik is offline sphykik  United States
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More photos of things I learned the hard way!

Here's the completed horn assembly. I used PL to "seal" the hardboard midrange mount. Used weather stripping to make good contact between the horn and box. The CD was mounted using 1 inch flange bolts - they are just barely long enough, but it works. 1/2" wood screws hold the midrange drive in place.

Click the image to open in full size.

Here you can see the furniture foot against the back of the woofer.

Click the image to open in full size.

Crossovers mounted in the top of the box. I used weather stripping on the back and 1/2" wood screws to hold them down. Going forward I will most likely figure out a more secure solution (perhaps just longer screws) - I had one of the low end crossovers fall. Luckily no damage. I would also HIGHLY recommend installing the crossovers before the midbass drivers - otherwise you can't get a drill inside the box.

Click the image to open in full size.

The black screws I bought didn't really work. The heads are too small and will pull through the box with too much pressure from the other side. I ran out to Ace and got some regular flanged machine screws as a temporary measure, though they have similar issues. I think I'm just going to use black machine screws with black finishing washers. Should look cool with the finish I have in mind.

Click the image to open in full size.

(Sorta) finished boxes!

Click the image to open in full size.

I plan to finish these with a Monocoat Cotton White oil for that "Scandinavian floor" look. Thinking about a Vox style grill cloth, or maybe just a white/light gray fabric. We shall see!

Click the image to open in full size.
(Image credit - Monocoat)
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Old 3rd March 2017, 07:49 PM   #304
bwaslo is offline bwaslo  United States
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Wingnuts on the back of the woofs -- good idea, I'll probably steal that one.

Did you get the bad woofer issue sorted out?

I mounted crossovers the same way you did, but didn't bother to drill. Just gasket foam under the board and wood screws (no holes, just brute force to get them started).

Are you going to use veneer tape on the edges? Foam grille or something else? (both improve the cosmetics considerably).

Also interested to read how they sound after you play them with subs -- adding subs always improves the treble to my ears, probably a spectrum balance thing.
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Last edited by bwaslo; 3rd March 2017 at 07:51 PM.
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Old 4th March 2017, 01:29 PM   #305
sphykik is offline sphykik  United States
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I did some more testing last night - the woofer has a small amount of output, but the voice coil isn't moving freely like the other 3. It is covered under warranty, but I have to deal directly with FaitalPro instead of getting a replacement through PE. I'm waiting to hear back from Faital, but I imagine shipping to Italy might cost nearly as much as a new driver so I might order a new one.

I hadn't considered veneer tape, but I like the idea. Definitely going to make grills. I'd like to use something like this, but I have reservations about its acoustic transparency.

Haven't tried them with a sub yet, but I know what you mean. "Harsh" treble can be tamed simply by adding bass!
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Old 4th March 2017, 07:26 PM   #306
bwaslo is offline bwaslo  United States
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I used this for grilles - Parts Express Speaker Cabinet Grill Foam 19" Wide x 31" Long x 3/8" Thick Black

Mark sizes with masking tape, squish the foam between a metal ruler's narrow edge (or other long metal) and a piece of cardboard, cut it to size with a razor knife. It attaches to special velcro (called "M.V.A #8", PM me your address and I can send you some if you go that way, it's hard to get in small quantity). Quick, easy, looks great and acoustically transparent.

Sucks about the woofer. So, the voice coil is stuck in its gap?

The veneer tape on the edges gives you an "ahhh" feeling when you iron it on and trim it. Suddenly the plywood becomes solid hardwood!
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Old 15th March 2017, 07:08 PM   #307
bwaslo is offline bwaslo  United States
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sphykik, any further progress? Did you get the replacement woof yet?
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Old 16th March 2017, 01:40 PM   #308
sphykik is offline sphykik  United States
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Hi Bill,

After several emails to Faital Pro and no response (going to have to call international, I guess) I caved and bought a new woofer from PE.

I replaced the faulty speaker and wow, what a difference. Not that I should be surprised, but the low end is much more coherent and the headache-inducing phase problems are gone.

I used finishing washers and 2" black screws when reassembling the box, and actually like the look of it. Final finishing (sanding, veneer tape, Monocoat oil, and grills) will have to wait a little while. Right now I'm just enjoying the sound.

Click the image to open in full size.

When I get my tax return I'll order the MiniDSP. Looking forward to testing the difference with and without FIR corrections, and to properly integrate the subwoofer.

Speaking of, right now I have crudely implemented my old BIC 8" sub under ~90hz. In my room I've found that the Small Syns roll off pretty sharply at 80hz. Right now I'm using the speaker-level inputs on the sub (it doesn't have speaker level outs) and adjusting the crossover by ear. Next project will be building a sub/subs for the living room, but I'm debating different approaches (trying my hand at Hornresp, designing a simple sealed/ported box, or building another established DIY horn design).
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Old 16th March 2017, 05:44 PM   #309
bwaslo is offline bwaslo  United States
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Yeah, the sealed version does drop off pretty quick (though it seems to work really nice with a Linkwitz transform still). I like those stands you're using, what are they?
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Old 16th March 2017, 06:40 PM   #310
sphykik is offline sphykik  United States
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Oh jeez, I have no idea - my grandparents were going to throw them out years ago. They are a lot less sturdy than they look
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