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GR-research AV 1's, more questions

Discussion in 'Home Theater Projects' started by Ryan T, Jun 9, 2003.

  1. Ryan T

    Ryan T Second Unit

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    Hello,


    I've had my AV 1's for some time now and I pleased with the sound for the most part. I'm planning on rebuilding the enclosures using the original plans soon. I've been wanting to take on a DIY project recently but don't have the money to buy another set of AV 1's. I was wondering since I'm already gonna rebuild the enclosures could i rebuild the crossovers with the sonicap upgrade and would it be worth the $70 it cost for the upgrade? I guess it would involve cutting the shrink tube off and soldering the new sonicaps in place and then reseal the joints. Is this possible or even a good idea? My biggest question is what will the sonicaps do to the sound? I mean it's $70 for the upgrade and the only thing I can hear wrong with the AV 1's is they have some slight sibilance and sometimes are a little harsh. But that very well could be my room cause I have fairly bad acoustics (all painted dry wall, with no pictures or anything on them). I'm also planning on treating my room when I build the new enclosures. So what do you think? Would the sonicaps make enough improvement to justify the $70 or is it even possible to redo the crossover? I also wonder if just improving the room acoustics will make a bigger difference than the sonicaps.



    Thanks,
    Ryan
     
  2. Chris Tsutsui

    Chris Tsutsui Screenwriter

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    The sonicaps WILL change the sound, and it will likely be most noticeable in the highs and midrange.

    If your GRs are too harsh sounding, or vocals sound artificial, I believe the sonicaps will solve that. The sonicaps make female vocals sound smoother and more realistic. Kind of like changing from a grainy tweeter, to a clear smooth tweeter. (Then again, it's not like the AV-1s are grainy sounding speakers to begin with)

    Acoustic panels and treatments to the room will make the grainy highs even more apparent because your ears will hear more of the speaker and less reflections.

    However, $70 is no free ride, and I must admit that it isn't easy noticing the differences without having both speakers for an A/B comparison. I found that the difference is apparent enough that you don't have to be critically listening to hear it.

    I have a feeling that the $70 may be justified, but then again I don't want to be blamed if it doesn't cut it for you. [​IMG]
     
  3. Ryan T

    Ryan T Second Unit

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    Thanks for your input Chris. The speakers are pretty smooth to start out like you mentioned. Some material does have noticeable sibilance some it's not too bad. They rarely sound harsh but with some songs if I really turn it up it does get a little fatiguing.

     
  4. Danny Richie

    Danny Richie Stunt Coordinator

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    Ryan,

    Your description of the harshness you describe that parallels your volume level and your relating to fatigue when you really turn it up really points to your room as the culprit.

    Those speakers a not at all harsh or grainy. They are more to the softer, laid back, and smooth side.

    What you are hearing that you are not liking are the room reflections that are interfering with the primary signal. The sibilance you are hearing is also likely to be caused by a primary reflection or even a secondary reflection arriving so near in time to the non-reflected sound that it is perceived as the same. Good room treatment will smooth it all out and take care of those problems.

    I would love to sell you the high quality Sonicaps, but if you have only a little to spend your money will go further with a well treated room than anything else.

    Attack the primary reflection points and the wall behind the speakers first. This includes the corners of the room behind the speakers too.

    Here is some really good, and cheap, DIY room treatments that you can build:

    http://mywebpages.comcast.net/kidder...NEL/Panels.htm

    After you get your room in order the Sonicaps will be a nice upgrade that you can appreciate.

    I'll even through in all new heat shrink for free, and some more solder.

    Plus, I know the guy pretty well that assembled your networks (me) and I know it will be pretty easy to de-solder the current caps and solder in the new Sonicaps.
     
  5. Ryan T

    Ryan T Second Unit

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    Danny, I was hoping you would chime in here. First off I didn't mean to imply the AV 1's were any were near harsh or grainy. I really don't mind spending money on room treatments and sonicaps provided the sonicaps will make noticeable difference. I just don't have another $250 + to spend on another set of av 1's or something similar. What does the sonicap upgrade involve exactly? I guess my question is what will I need to cut off of my old crossovers and replace in other words how extensive is it? Also is there any way you could elaborate on how the sonicaps will change the sound of the speakers? I know Chris said it cleans the vocals up makes them overall more clear but is it a big difference? What I might try is to rebuild the enclosures and do room treatments and if i'm still wanting to improve the sound even more i'll go for the sonicaps. I also wanted to ask you a quick question about my current AV 1 enclosures. I built them into false bottom towers when i made the enclosures. So i extended the baffle all the way to the ground. Do you think that could have any negative effect on them? I'm going to fallow the plans i got with my kit when i build my replacement enclosures and i'm going to round the corners this time.




    Thanks,
    Ryan
     
  6. Brett DiMichele

    Brett DiMichele Producer

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    You know you are dealing with a Class Act when the speaker
    maker recommends dealing with the room rather than changing
    the caps. And I completely agree with Danny (Why shouldn't
    I.. He knows far more than I do... Maybe someday I can be
    where he's at now.. And then he will still be far beyond me!)

    Dan [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]


    I would deal with the 1st and 2nd reflections by use of
    precisely located wall hangings. You can have someone stand
    at the speaker and shine a laser from the center of the
    tweeter and where ever that beam hits that's your first
    reflection. You can hang a nice canvas painting or a tapestry
    there. They work.. I use a large canvas painting on my one
    wall to absorb and it does, well. On the other wall I have
    Levelor vertical blinds that work fantastic as diffusors
    (rather than absorb they scatter).

    Or if you don't mind the asthetics some acoustic foam tiles
    work wonders. I just can't see gluing them to the walls in
    my living room [​IMG]


    On back walls, Book Cases full of odd sized books work well
    for diffusing standing waves. And you can make Bass Traps
    on the cheap using Chris's or other designs on the net.
     
  7. Danny Richie

    Danny Richie Stunt Coordinator

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  8. Chris Tsutsui

    Chris Tsutsui Screenwriter

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  9. Ryan T

    Ryan T Second Unit

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    Well it sounds like the sonicaps will be a good upgrade. It's funny you mentioned the difference being similar to going from a HT receiver to a good power amp. I'm hoping to do just that although I don't know how good of a power amp I can get for around $150. The AV 1's are currently being powered by a H/K avr120 which is not really enough power to get them going in full range mode. Anyways it'll be some time before I try to go with separates. I was gonna upgrade my music system a while ago but I decided to go with building a computer instead [​IMG]. Anyways I'm getting anxious to build something for my music system. Especially since the weather has been nice enough to do some more DIY stuff.


    I have a OT question for you Danny.

    I noticed in another thread you mentioned your not gonna continue using the TI tweeter and your getting a replacement in soon(well a month and a half). Will there be any reason for me to get the new ones and replace the T1's I have now? I guess theres a good chance thats not even possible unless your having the T2's made to the same specs as the T1's so they can be used without redoing the crossovers. Anyhow just thought i'd ask.




    Thanks,
    Ryan
     
  10. Danny Richie

    Danny Richie Stunt Coordinator

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    Ryan,

    The new GR-T2 tweeters will be very close to the same specs and will be a drop in replacement with very little network change. In the A/V-1 the one and only resistor will drop in value by 1 ohm.

    It may not be much of an upgrade though.

    The newer GR-T2's have a little smoother response and a little lower Fs, but they sound about the same.

    The main reason for the new tweeters made by another company is quality control and consistency.
     
  11. Brian Bunge

    Brian Bunge Producer

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    Ryan,

    Check your PM![​IMG]
     

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