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Need help in designing a full range, one driver speaker...

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11 replies to this topic

#1 of 12 OFFLINE   Javier_Huerta


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Posted July 21 2004 - 02:07 PM

Hi all!

After building a couple of subs, I think I'd like to try and build a full range speaker now... the temptation is too much to resist, and my PC speakers are gone (some old JBL Control LA) so I have the hardware to play with.

I'd love to build someone with an extremely high quality / price ratio, so I thought about starting with Tang Band drivers. But, IIRC, the specs seem to be a bit different in PE's catalogue than in their Web page. I remember lots of drivers with 3mm of Xmax and 65-20KHz frequency response ranges, but apparently, those have disappeared from their page.

I think I might want the following drivers...

W3-881S 3"

100-20KHz response, but 0.5 mm XMax!

W3-594S 3"

100-20KHz response, but 0.4 mm XMax!

W4-1052SA 4"

4 mm XMax, but 60-15KHz response (and quite ragged!)

Quite simply, I don't know what to choose. Should I go with four 3" drivers, and build a line array? Use the 4" driver due to the great Xmax? I assume I'd like to build a ported system, so maybe a pair of 3" could generate enough bass and have a nice frequency response.

Eventually, I'm planning to build my speakers using 1/2" MDF, in braced boxes, and veneer them to custom match the furniture, so if they sound right enough, I'll use them with a vintage 1959 General Electric tube amp. That's the reason I worry so much about accuracy.

Help... I really don't know what should I go for... Posted Image

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#2 of 12 OFFLINE   Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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Posted July 21 2004 - 02:46 PM

You’ll certainly need multiple drivers. What you’re proposing is similar to the Bose speakers – 901, etc. Many people agree that you just don’t get the proper high-end “sheen” without a good-quality tweeter. And with so small a woofer, bass extension will be a problem. However, with multiple drivers you could safely use equalization to make up some of the difference, which is what Bose uses on some of their small driver/full range speakers. Regards, Wayne A. Pflughaupt
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#3 of 12 OFFLINE   Dennis_H


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Posted July 22 2004 - 02:02 AM

I'm currently using the W3-871S 3" TB full range speakers in my bedroom. They sound remarkably good for the money, but don't get very loud. A friend of mine who is very tight on money right now is considering builing a some single driver speakers also. I have looked into the W4-930SA for him. Has anyone used these? They are rated 40W with 2mm Xmax. FR is 65-18K ( I think). They are available from Acoustic Technologies (used to be Nuera) like the W3-871S. Thanks, Dennis

#4 of 12 OFFLINE   GrahamT


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Posted July 22 2004 - 05:56 AM

I also built a pair of speakers using the TB W3-871S driver and they are very good for the price. Right now I think I will try another pair using the new wr125s driver from www.creativesound.ca . It is a 4" full range with Adire's XBL^2 so it should be extremely accurate, and it has 6mm Xmax so extension should also be very good. If it lacks the high end "sheen" Wayne mentions I will add tweeter later. Hope this helps.

#5 of 12 OFFLINE   Javier_Huerta


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Posted July 22 2004 - 01:00 PM

Wayne, thanks for your reply! I'd definitely NOT want to build anything similar to anything made by Bose! Posted Image Although apparently equalizing these little drivers is one way to get a decent response, I saw one speaker in PE's catalogue that could get to "F3's at mid 50 Hz" in a vented box (they don't sell it anymore). Dennis, Graham, thanks for your suggestion. I'm looking at other drivers as well now.

What I'm thinking right now is buying 4 or 3 4" drivers per speaker, and building a small floorstanding line array for using with a tube amplifier. I *guess* the not-so extended frequency response I'll get by not using a tweeter may be somehow beneficial with a warm tube amp. I'm not sure... but at the price of a Tang Band driver, I might want to experiment.

So far, I've only found 1 line array on the Internet with Tang Band drivers. It used 32 (yep, 32) 2" drivers, and apparently, the owner didn't like it that much (comb filtering, little bass response, ragged high frequency response). Hmmm...

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#6 of 12 OFFLINE   Mark Hayenga

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Posted July 22 2004 - 01:54 PM

Have you considered the Aura 3" from Madisound?
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#7 of 12 OFFLINE   TimForman


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Posted July 23 2004 - 07:22 AM

I recommend using the W3-871S or the W4-1052SA with mods. The 3" TBs from PE aren't going to give you the same performance. Consider carefully the mini line array route. There are inherent problems that are difficult to overcome. You'll notice that most incorporate a tweeter to help with some of this such as the designs from Creative Sound, RAW Acoustics and GR Research. The most common problem is if the line ends below ear level there is a large drop in HF response. This is why Dr. Jim Griffin describes floor to ceiling designs in his white paper. One very simple design would be a small bipole ML-TL using the 871s. You may or may not roll off the rear driver with a single inductor. This design will produce higher SPL, better LF response than a single driver design and less of a boxy sound. It might not be up to the SPL levels needed for a large HT room but it's a good start into full range drivers.

thread for TL W3-871S

#8 of 12 OFFLINE   Javier_Huerta


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Posted July 23 2004 - 08:43 AM

Tim, I can't thank you enough for your help. I'm looking to build something different, and I'm not interested in high SPL's... just something cute and nice to get me started in DIY speakers.

I looked at Creative Sound. Their SuperElf design seems interesting. I e-mailed them to see if they can send that stuff to México... fingers crossed. Posted Image

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#9 of 12 OFFLINE   Adam Demuth

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Posted July 28 2004 - 06:26 AM

Try these guys out... The whole TL thing may not be your cup-o-tea, but definitly quite a few single driverprojects and single driver recommenations.

#10 of 12 OFFLINE   TimForman


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Posted July 28 2004 - 07:09 AM

Yep, that's Dave Dlugos' site. You'd better be careful, next thing you know you'll be hanging out at Fullrangedriver.com
Posted Image

#11 of 12 OFFLINE   Rory Buszka

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Posted July 30 2004 - 02:28 PM

There is a Vifa MG-series woofer (yellow woven glass fiber 4" cone) that is supposed to function very well as a full-range driver. It only has response out to 15,000 Hz and down to 100 Hz, but supposedly it does everything else very well.
"It sounds like it's barfing out the bass." - Zach

#12 of 12 OFFLINE   TimForman


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Posted July 30 2004 - 04:31 PM

Funny you should mention that. Scroll down a tad.

Vifa T-line

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