GR-Research A/V-2s as starters?

Discussion in 'Home Theater Projects' started by Tim Holyoke, Feb 15, 2005.

  1. Tim Holyoke

    Tim Holyoke Second Unit

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    I've wanted to do a DIY set to start my HT for some time, I've just never had the disposable $$$ or the expertise to do so. Well, now I have an excellent woodworker/electrician/jack-of-all-trades at my disposal, and I'd like to put him to work [​IMG] .

    http://www.gr-research.com/performer/av2.htm

    For $300 I could justify this if they are going to be quality speakers that'll last me a long time.

    Would these be OK w/o a subwoofer to start? Of course I'd add a sub down the road, but right now I'd like to keep it to a pair of front mains and a receiver.

    What do you think? What else would you recommend in their place? Thanks a lot for any help, I appreciate it.

    Tim
     
  2. Shawn Keeler

    Shawn Keeler Stunt Coordinator

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    Tim,
    I may not be the one to ask on this subject, since I am starting my second GR-Research project. I am a little partial, but here is my two cents. The AV-2's in my opinion would be a great starter DIY project and addition for your HT. I absolutely love the AV-2s in my HT set-up. I would have no problem putting these speakers up against anything out there retailing under $2k. They are accurate, clean, & not that difficult to build. I have a fairly large sized HT, and these have no problem keeping up. Also, regarding the subwoofer issue, you will be fine running these without a subwoofer for the time being. I hope that helps? The AV-2s will be a great project for you. I have added a link to my site with my AV-2 project if you want to take a look at the build process. www.keelercables.com/keeler_theatre_diy.htm
    Good Luck on making your decision!
    Shawn
     
  3. Joey Skinner

    Joey Skinner Second Unit

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    Make sure your amp can handle the 4 ohm load of the AV-2. If you can go with a tower try the AV-3. It will play -3db down at 40 Hz compared to 55 Hz for the AV-2.
     
  4. Tim Holyoke

    Tim Holyoke Second Unit

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    Thanks Shawn. Hey, if they can be good enough for a theater like that, they'll be more than enough for my small beginning, eh? [​IMG] That really is an amazing setup you have, I'm in awe.

    How much extra did you spend above the $300 for the kit? What'd you use for your cabinets? What are you running them through?

    Thanks a lot!

    Tim
     
  5. john bourne

    john bourne Extra

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    As pointed out above make sure your amp can handle the 4ohm load. If it can not and you have to have a small speaker you can always do a sealed AV-3 which will run at 8ohms. I cannot speak to the AV-2 but I am running a pair of AV-3's with a sealed AV-3 center and the sound quality is very very good. If you can swing it I think upgrading to the larger towers makes a lot of sense. They occupy essentially the same foot print but have better low end extension. I cross my Adire Maelstrom sub over at 60hz and the two blend perfectly. While breaking them in I ran them without the sub and was surprised by how well they handled themselves - this could buy you some time. Another reason, either project you will invest a good amount of time on, however, with he larger AV-3 you will never wonder if you are missing out on something better...except if you are like me you will start thinking "if I only built the Alphas instead." Just my 2 cents - good luck surely you will enjoy either.
     
  6. Tim Holyoke

    Tim Holyoke Second Unit

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    Thanks Joey and John. I don't even have an amp yet, so I'm lost as far as that discussion goes :b . You don't happen to have a short and sweet explanation as to why the seemingly larger speaker (AV3) takes less power than the smaller AV2?

    The AV3s are only $30 more...other than the larger cabinet, what additional costs would I incur?

    Thanks again.

    Tim
     
  7. Joey Skinner

    Joey Skinner Second Unit

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    The av2 uses two 8 ohm woofers and the av3 uses 16 ohm woofers. They are wired to give a 4 ohm and 8 ohm load respectively. Any amp will power 8 ohm speakers but only some will run 4 ohm speakers. The cost should be the same to build the cabinets. One sheet of MDF will be enough for either the av2 or av3. You will also need some polyfill, some open cell eggcrate style foam and wood glue. The polyfill is cheap and you might be able to scrounge the foam(look for a discarded mattress pad). The av3 is more complicated to build because it is a transmission line speaker but they are not hard for an experienced woodworker. Check out the .pdf for the cabinet plans on the GR website. The av3 is also more expensive because the 16 ohm woofers cost a little more and it comes with spikes for the bottom of the cabinet. The only big expense other than the kit itself is the finishing materials. I used paper backed oak veneer on mine but there are lots of other ways to finish them.
     
  8. Darren_T

    Darren_T Second Unit

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    I have 5 AV-2's in my HT and love them. They are more than adequate for my large room. I have an AV15 PR'd sub paired with them and my system is envied by all my friends [​IMG]

    You can check out my stuff at www.thomaswoodcraft.com I detail the building of several kits including the AV1+ which is now called the AV2. The AV1+ speakers are my personal speakers. I also sold the Tempest to build my current AV15 which is a monster performer.

    Darren
     
  9. Tim Holyoke

    Tim Holyoke Second Unit

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    I'm leaning towards AV3s now, mainly because of the 8 ohm vs. 4 ohm difference. Can somebody explain what exactly a sealed box is (vs. floorstanding)?

    What would be the difference between the A/V-2, 3, and 3S?

    Would there be much difference in additional building costs between the three?

    Thanks again.

    Tim
     
  10. Joey Skinner

    Joey Skinner Second Unit

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    This is from AudioVideo101.com:

    Sealed Enclosure. Type of speaker enclosure in which the speaker driver is mounted into a sealed box with no air exchange from the air inside the box to air outside the box.

    Ported Enclosure. Type of speaker enclosure which uses a port to allow air to travel from the inside of the box to the outside of the box taking full advantage of a speaker driver’s output and increasing sound pressure (sound output or volume) by 2 to 3 dB compared to a similar speaker with a sealed enclosure

    Transmission Line. Type of speaker enclosure in which the back-force of a bass driver (the acoustic energy generated from the backside of the driver) is routed through a fairly long, winding channel or “hall” before being ported to the outside of the cabinet.

    The AV2 is a ported design, the AV3 is a transmission line, and the AV3S is a sealed design.

    Any of these pairs will require one sheet of MDF. The only difference in cost will be that you will use more glue on the AV3 and you'll have more MDF leftover with the other two. Also it will take more of whatever kind of finish you use to do the AV3.

    I would go with the AV3. The AV2 will require a 4 ohm capable amp and some kind of stand to put them on. The AV3S is usually used as a center channel in a 5.1 surround system.

    Check out AudioVideo101.com for more info on the differences in speaker types.
     
  11. PaulDF

    PaulDF Second Unit

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    Tim, I feel I should advise you to spend as much time here as you can, reading up on the basics of speakers etc. There is much to be learned, and you don't want to second guess your decision, after you've already started the project.

    You have a made a wise choice with the A/V series from GR-Research. I too have the A/V-3 mains with A/V-3S center channel. They are very clean and crisp sounding and do have a decent amount of bass capability. I went with the 8 ohm A/V-3's since they are much easier to power than the 4 ohm A/V-2's. Although, my old prologic amp couldn't even handle the load of the A/V-3's.

    Building these, or any speaker for that matter, takes a lot of time and effort, especially for a beginner (like me or you). But it is well worth it. Know what you want before you start because thats what you will have in the end...
     
  12. Mike_Bauer

    Mike_Bauer Extra

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    Shawn, great job on the speakers and your webpage! I have just about narrowed things down to GR Research so I was really interested in your post.

    What kind of tools did you use, by any chance a jasper tool for your router?
     

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