Efficient, lively speaker kits

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by AlexKunec, Jan 27, 2003.

  1. AlexKunec

    AlexKunec Stunt Coordinator

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    Im planning on building some speakers in a couple of months and I need to find a speaker kit (pair) following this criteria:

    1. Dynamic
    2. Lively - I want them to give me a feeling that im at the concert. So far, I havent heard any speakers that gets me as dazzled as being at a live orchestra. I have built some GR research speakers (av1+) for a friend (and they sound very detailed) but im looking for something more powerful. Im going to use a 200w/cha adcom power amp.
    3. Efficient - im hoping for an efficiency greater or equal to 91db/w/m I dont need much bottom end as i will have a tempest sub. Im looking for extension down to 45-50hz

    Im looking at spending no more then $400 for a kit (all parts for a PAIR of speakers, minus the wood)

    Any suggestions? I was seriously considering getting some horn loaded speakers, but there isnt much available in kits. I was also considering the HE10.1s but im not sure that 10 driver will handle all the shame that im going to put it through
     
  2. Stephen Dodds

    Stephen Dodds Second Unit

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  3. Greg Monfort

    Greg Monfort Supporting Actor

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    Adire's new HE12.1. If these look a tad wimpy, then step up to the larger Pi speakers that use 15"ers. Really though, until you leap up to either hornloaded or dual 15" and 300-500Hz horns, or an 'infinite' line such as the Linus (except better drivers), approaching 'live' in anything larger than a double wide closet will evade you.

    Browsing the HE forum where the big dogs run will fill you in on the various components/kits available that'll have your neighbors asking, 'is it live, or is it Memorex'. [​IMG]

    GM
     
  4. Kevin_Johnson

    Kevin_Johnson Auditioning

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    Take a look at Pi speakers. I built the Theater 4's, and they're great. They're plenty efficient (101dB/w/m), but they're also quite large (36"Hx24"Wx18"D). They have smaller offerings, but they're either less efficient or more expensive. I doubt you could get more of what you're looking for in your price range.

    Kevin
     
  5. Dan Wesnor

    Dan Wesnor Second Unit

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    If you have 200 watts, I don't see why you're worried about efficieny. With 91dB, you'd be looking at peaks around 110dB from a pair, which is downright ear-splitting (You'd drown out you're neighbor's turbine jey engine from that Boeing 707 restoring).

    Most DIY speakers are around 83-85dB (one woofer) or 85-89dB (MTM, woofers in parallel).

    Give me some details of what you want. A pair of Linus arrays will do exactly what you're asking, but at around 6' tall, have a low SAF.
     
  6. Brian Bunge

    Brian Bunge Producer

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    Greg,

    Since you are the HE expert on this forum, do you think the HE12.1's would work well in a HT setup? I know that Dan Wiggins feels the HE10.1's aren't up to par with the KIT281's for HT, but I'd think the HE12.1's would begin to bridge the gap. I see the HE12.1's as possibly being an alternative to something like the Klipsch stuff that Not So Hi-Fi Buys sells.
     
  7. Michael R Price

    Michael R Price Screenwriter

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    Brian,

    I think the HE12.1 still has somewhat limited clean midbass capability (-6db from Kit281 displacement limits?), and is also still not shielded. The XBL versions of the kits should address at least the first problem, and will probably be better choices than the Kit281 for almost any application where low bass is not required. (This is assuming they sound the same... well, I ask about that next. [​IMG])

    Also, what have you heard about the sound quality of the HE kits vs. the Kit281? I can see from the graphs that they are both voiced as neutral as possible, but has anyone commented on the difference in, say, midrange quality? Thanks.

    Dan,

    I'm thinking maybe maximum output capability is not the only factor in dynamics. Sure, any old speaker can go loud, but can it go loud effortlessly? That could be the reason for high efficiency and low distortion designs; there are plenty of people using big horn speakers that do not blow the house down.

    The speakers I listened to with somewhat higher efficiency than my own seemed to have a more lively and exciting sound at any volume. But, my experience is limited here. I can imagine Alex is looking for that kind of sound though.
     
  8. Brian Bunge

    Brian Bunge Producer

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    Michael,

    I know Dan Hine has a pair of the HE10.1's but I don't know if he's heard the 281's or not. Maybe he can comment to some extent about the sound of the HE10's.

    Also, I know of someone that is looking for "large towers that can play loud" and wants to use towers all the way around since he's using a front projector so video shielding is a moot point. He also says it doesn't matter how large the subs are. I figured HE12's all around and a couple of Tempests might fit the bill. Sounds like a dream customer, huh?! [​IMG]
     
  9. Michael R Price

    Michael R Price Screenwriter

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    HE12.1s and multiple Tempests indeed. I'd use 4th order highpass at 80-100Hz if available on the HE12's to maximize their output capability. At 96db efficiency, a 100 watt amp should do the trick. Sounds like a dream system to me. [​IMG]
     
  10. AlexKunec

    AlexKunec Stunt Coordinator

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    Yah, the HE12.1s look like a great idea. The reason I was staying away from them before was because they require a huge box (125l). But now i see there is a sealed box design only 65l. Looks good. But, has anyone ever built these before?? I havent seen a single review from anyone on these.

    Thanks again for the advise
     
  11. Dan Hine

    Dan Hine Screenwriter

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    As Brian mentioned, I have a pair of HE10.1's in my HT...eventually to be three of them as I work on designing a shelf/mount for a the center. I have not heard the 281's so I cannot compare the two but here are my thoughts on the HE10's.

    First off, my room is almost 4000cubic feet and they are being powered by a Pioneer Elite 35tx. They sound very clean, clear/detailed as you would expect from a high efficiency horn type speaker. However they do not have the fatiguing high end than many non-horn lovers complain about (I am typically one of them). If you are using subs (and integrate them well) you'll likely not have any problems with the low end. I am currently running dual subs using the original SVS drivers. The HE10's are good for 40hz in room which I've found works very well with the 80hz crossover of the Elite. The imaging in my room is fantastic, the dynamics are incredible and the sound reproduced is very true to life.

    As far as SPL goes, I have absolutely no trouble reaching levels that border on annoying. [​IMG] I'm usually hanging around 85db with music (95db HT) at my listening position which is approximately 12ft back from the front sound stage. I'd be willing to try the 281's but I am very happy with the HE10's.
     
  12. Michael R Price

    Michael R Price Screenwriter

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    Thank you for your impressions Dan. I have a friend who will probably be building HE10.1/12.1's in the future. If I had waited a year I probably would have chosen those as well since I am finding out the hard way that making up for low efficiency can be trouble.

    In the past my 100 watt amplifier would start wimping out at past 95db, but it was clear the Kit281s were still doing OK and it sounded quite good up to that point. The new amp, which should be good for 550 watt peaks once it works :b, should give me pretty much whatever dynamics the speakers are capable of... should be interesting.

    I'm just finding that when the sound is of truly good quality, high levels (to around 100db) are not annoying at all. It is that ability of the sound to effortlessly overwhelm you with energy, becoming even more clear, exciting, and realistic, that I seek in a stereo system. Real music is pretty loud but no one complains; there's got to be a reason behind this. If only it just didn't cost so much money to get closer to that.
     
  13. Saurav

    Saurav Cinematographer

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  14. Michael R Price

    Michael R Price Screenwriter

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    Hm, the Kit281s have a bit of that "size" you're talking about yet their sound is still pretty sweet... perhaps there is hope for it, and more so the 3-way version, after all. Actually the same goes for any relatively large/dynamic conventional-driver speaker, they could be a compromise in that regard... although I would guess that higher end horn/high efficiency systems would have a more smooth and precise sound like their more typical cousins, while retaining the dynamics. (Can you tell what kind of speaker I am saving up for? [​IMG])

    BTW, don't feel bad about having reversed phase. I was one of the people who had the Kit281 crossovers mismarked and I'd listened to them a little with the tweeters out of phase. The difference is smaller than you'd think for a response anomaly of that magnitude. The only effect mentioned in the Audioxpress review was that male voices sounded hollow, and only when listening nearfield. Funny how that works.
     
  15. Saurav

    Saurav Cinematographer

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  16. AlexKunec

    AlexKunec Stunt Coordinator

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    Saurav, have you compared these speakers to your paradoxs?

    If so, how do they compare? How do they differ?

    Ok, after going back to harmonic discord im now thinking of going back with the HE10.1's.

    i just have a couple questions about the 10.1's. First off, Dan Wiggins said that they might not have enough midbass in a HT setup. If i use a sub from 20-80hz, would these be ok. I looked at excursion charts with unibox with the eminence beta driver and i would have to be putting a huge wattage (+100w) through in order to hit xmax at 100hz. 100w into a 95dB efficient speaker translates to 115dB, which is more then i need.

    I also looked at Saurav's pics of his sealed HE12.1's and they still look pretty big. Right now im a college student and well place is limited.
     
  17. Saurav

    Saurav Cinematographer

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    I hope the HD link answered your question about comparing the HE12.1 to the Paradox. I'm really not in the mood to write a detailed review, I don't really understand half the terms used in most speaker reviews anyway [​IMG]
     
  18. AlexKunec

    AlexKunec Stunt Coordinator

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    Saurav,

    I dont understand half the words they use either, im just an ordinary guy wanting something that sounds great. I find that most speakers in stores sound the same. This is why im thinking about the HE line from adire. I figure that the high efficiency and horn tweeter should sound different (and hopefully better) from most speakers that i here.
     
  19. Saurav

    Saurav Cinematographer

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  20. Michael R Price

    Michael R Price Screenwriter

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    "But in reviews, all speakers seem to have liquid midranges and airy highs..."

    That's very true.
     

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