Best tower speakers for $500 or under

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by pfar, Aug 9, 2014.

  1. pfar

    pfar Stunt Coordinator

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    Yes the 1123 has better app controls, a little more powerful sound, corrections with some zone two issues, a couple of other things, it is not a lot different. I will only purchase it if I can sell both receivers I have now and get an equivillient amount of money. Unless someone can recommend me on another receiver to look at. Most likely though I will stay with the 1023.
     
  2. pfar

    pfar Stunt Coordinator

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    What does the Dayton 8 speakers, previously mentioned, compare to?
     
  3. Robert_J

    Robert_J Lead Actor

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    It's difficult to compare a DIY design to anything. Based on reviews of the version I use (6.5" woofers instead of 8"), some people compared it to speakers costing in the $2,500 range. I spent $150 per speaker but build my front 3.

    Both designs are 4 ohm nominal speakers so that limits you on the receivers that will directly power them. My Pioneer VSX-1014 is rated to drive 6 or 8 ohm speakers but I did my research and it uses the same power supply and output stages as the Pioneer Elite model of the same year which is rated to drive a 4 ohm load. It's not easy on the receiver. A loud passage will cause it to turn off unless I have it plugged into one of my dedicated 20 amp outlets.
     
  4. pfar

    pfar Stunt Coordinator

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    Is there any way of converting it to a 6 or 8 ohm speaker? What could I do with my existing pioneer vsx 1023 with it or would I need to upgrade?
     
  5. pfar

    pfar Stunt Coordinator

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    Also why is it difficult to compare a DIY speaker to another speaker? What made you do the 6.5 desin over the 8"?
     
  6. schan1269

    schan1269 HTF Expert
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    4ohm is tough typically because...AVR only have a set amount of power. Lets say(for the sake of math) 500.That 500 is divided by 2,3,5,7,9....whatever you got. Ever AVR has a "maximum" rating per (usually) 2 channels. So this particular can do 140 per on two channels. Obviously 140x5 is more than 500.Here is where ohm load comes in.8ohm takes 100% gain to reach that 500 total watts(or 280 if using only two)6ohm takes 75% gain to achieve that 500(on two channels, the avr can produce 180 if only two channels are used at 100% gain...cause 360 is still under 500)4ohm takes 50% gain to achieve that 500(on two channels it still has room...up to 250 per channel)That is what people don't understand. When you drop ohm load, you increase power. But an amplifier(be it standalone or inside an AVR) can only produce a finite amount of power.I think the 1023 would be safe on a 4ohm load...as long as it was the front channel only.As to making that DIY speaker 6 or 8 ohm. That would be a call to PE and talking to a live person on finding similar drivers on higher ohm loads.
     
  7. Robert_J

    Robert_J Lead Actor

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    No. If you changed out drivers, it would be a different design. But there is a mid/tweeter design that uses the same woofer and tweeter and shows an 8 ohm load to the receiver. I ran it for a few years before giving it back to a family member. What's the difference? There is less bass but if you have a sub then that's not an issue. Potential output is 3db lower because it only has a single woofer. But it gets loud. Loud enough that I had my wife come in to yell at me and I just watched her mouth moving. It was funny to me but not to her.

    [​IMG]

    Don't want to build a cabinet? Build a kit. A few hours solder and and a screwdriver and you will have speakers very similar to the ones I used for years. http://www.parts-express.com/dayton-audio-br-1-6-1-2-2-way-bookshelf-monitor-speaker-kit-pair--300-640
     
  8. Robert_J

    Robert_J Lead Actor

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    For me, I don't go and audition a lot of speakers. None of my friends are into this hobby and the only speakers they have are the ones I built for them. The few times I've gone into a place like Magnolia AV, I get attacked by a salesman spewing crap about this and that which he knows very little about. I know that I like soft dome tweeters so I generally stick with those designs.

    Size. The DIII is much smaller - http://www.parts-express.com/project-gallery-speaker-project-the-d-iii Even though the cabinets are tuned to 35hz and by themselves have great low end, I crossover at 80hz and let my dual 15" subs handle everything down to about 15hz.
     
  9. pfar

    pfar Stunt Coordinator

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    Yes my friends aren't into this either. I'm thinking about doing the 6.5 or 8" Dayton. What are the steps I need to follow to make it? I know some basic with wood work. I'm sure enough to make a cabinet, but I would need to buy a table saw and the other necessary tools. I know nothing about building crossovers or any of that though.
     
  10. Robert_J

    Robert_J Lead Actor

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    All you need to know is how to read a schematic and solder. There's no design work. I built mine on peg board. I zip tied the components down exactly like they looked on the schematic, twisted the wires to make all of the connections and soldered. After I tested it, I hot glued all of the components so they wouldn't vibrate loose.

    Even a cheap table saw costs $100. You can use a sawboard http://www.subwoofer-builder.com/sawboard/ and a circular saw from Harbor Freight. I found one for $30 and you can get 20% off of that with a coupon that is available everywhere. I used a plunge router and a Jasper Jig to cut the holes for the speakers and port. That's why I suggested the BR-1 kit or something from http://www.diysoundgroup.com. They provide a CNC cut front baffle and you only need to build the other 5 sides of the box. Not intricate cuts to make. They will even assemble the crossover (for a fee) for you so you know it is correct.

    For example, this looks like a great kit at $100 per speaker - http://www.diysoundgroup.com/forum/index.php?topic=53.0 but it is not available anymore. Read up on the design process in the thread. That 7 page thread goes on for 2 years with a final tweak only a few months ago. They do provide an updated crossover schematic at the end and you can figure out the parts list, the baffle will be difficult without a router. And if you have the time, check out the You Tube link in the thread. That impressed me.
     
  11. gene c

    gene c Producer

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    Another option might be the TriTrix MTM kit http://www.parts-express.com/tritrix-mtm-tl-speaker-components-and-cabinet-kit-pair--300-702. It uses two 5" versions of the same Dayton 6"/8" drivers (so the bass response might be a little less then 6"/8" ones Robert mentioned) and the same tweeter. The cabinet has all the cuts made for you but it needs to be assembled. It comes with a crossover that also needs to be assembled and is a bit more expensive then cutting the cabinets yourself ($259/pr). But it's something to consider.

    The 6" drivers Robert used in his speakers are also available in a 4 ohm version which two of those wired in series will produce an 8 ohm load. But that might also change the crossover point which wouldn't be a good thing. The tweeter is also 8 ohms.

    BTW, I recently bought and put together these 34" tower cabinets from PE and they went together fairly easily. A bit pricey at $110/pr but for those who want to get they're feet weet in speaker building they're a great option. http://www.parts-express.com/knock-down-mdf-116-cu-ft-tower-speaker-cabinet--300-7066

    The bookshelf versions ($58/pr) are even better. http://www.parts-express.com/knock-down-mdf-056-cu-ft-bookshelf-speaker-cabinet--300-7064
     

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