Overclock.net › Forums › Case Mods & Cases › Other Hardware Mods › [Build Log] High Quality PC Speakers Design and Build
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

[Build Log] High Quality PC Speakers Design and Build - Page 10

post #91 of 124
Thread Starter 
Made some minor crossover adjustments, just a change in one of the capacitors and a resistor. Next step is to spend some time using them, then over the next 2-3 weeks make minor tweaks to the crossovers until I'm reasonably happy with the sound.

I did want to see what the off axis looks like with the new front design, so I did a series of off-axis measurements at 0 - 90 degrees in 5 degree steps on tweeter level and combined them into this chart:

Dispersion normalized at 0 degrees:




and even without normalization this looks great and is close to ideal behavior, the crossover frequency is not even visible:




And an averaged power response based on these measurements:




I really have been fortunate with the pairing of these drivers. Makes me want to try doing a MTM version at some point, maybe with a slightly larger woofer.
post #92 of 124
That should sound great for music especially - and for such a small cabinet I'm sure tipping the curve up on the low end will actually make it 'appear' to be pretty neutral for most listening too (as long as it doesn't gain too much from being pushed against the wall once it's on your desk! Very impressive to say the least - especially for such inexpensive drivers. biggrin.gif
post #93 of 124
Thread Starter 
It's still flat on axis, but with the off axis sloping down gradually with frequency it will sound less aggressive and a bit warmer.

I just did a set of comparison measurement with my Alpha B1s (I think they retail for about $300, they are great speakers for the money, but they are entry level)

CREATOR: gd-jpeg v1.0 (using IJG JPEG v62), quality = 100

Anyway, this is what they look like measured under the exact same conditions:

First normalized at 0 Degrees:




And without normalization:




It's messy, not awful, but messy. My guess is that for a $300 speaker they only spend like $20 - $30 on drivers and crossover components.

I might do one for my Synchrony Ones, but they are really large so it will not be 100% precise unless I take them outside, and they are way too heavy for me to even consider that biggrin.gif
post #94 of 124
Thread Starter 
I had a look at what I've spent on these little speakers so far, not always a wise thing to do biggrin.gif

Anyway, this is the breakdown on 2 of these speakers: (US$)

  • Woofers 57.70
  • Tweeters 44.50
  • Drivers total 102.20

  • Inductors 35.10
  • Capacitors 27.52
  • Resistors 5.00
  • Crossovers Total 67.62

Cabinets etc: ~60.00

Total material cost: $229.82 (not including various shipping of parts)

Just for the fun of it, I've tried estimate what a similar set would cost in retail, in most cases the material cost is around 20 - 40% of the end sales price for speakers.

Based on this, they would cost around $600 - $1,150 in a shop.

But considering that it would probably be 25 - 40% cheaper to buy parts in large quantities they would realistically end up around $450 - $650 for a pair.
post #95 of 124
Quote:
Originally Posted by jvjessen View Post

I had a look at what I've spent on these little speakers so far, not always a wise thing to do biggrin.gifWarning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Anyway, this is the breakdown on 2 of these speakers: (US$)

  • Woofers 57.70
  • Tweeters 44.50
  • Drivers total 102.20

  • Inductors 35.10
  • Capacitors 27.52
  • Resistors 5.00
  • Crossovers Total 67.62

Cabinets etc: ~60.00

Total material cost: $229.82 (not including various shipping of parts)

Just for the fun of it, I've tried estimate what a similar set would cost in retail, in most cases the material cost is around 20 - 40% of the end sales price for speakers.

Based on this, they would cost around $600 - $1,150 in a shop.
But considering that it would probably be 25 - 40% cheaper to buy parts in large quantities they would realistically end up around $450 - $650 for a pair.

And that is where my dilemma comes in on so many projects. Although there is definitely a nice savings represented there (based on the 'realistic' estimate you've saved well over $300)... however, when you consider the time spent... you're making minimum wage or less pretty quickly. rolleyes.gif

I realize that these speakers (just like my computer and projects around the house I've done) were undertaken as a combination of research, experimentation, and needing a reason to have fun with your 3D printer... in which case - as a hobby should be - it's time well spent regardless of the implied 'hourly rate'. I spent close to 200 hours doing all the interior moldings, painting, cabling, etc... in my house before we moved in... and I could have subbed the whole thing out for less than $3K probably. But I found it relaxing and a welcome change from staring at a monitor for hours on end. In hindsight however, I should have just paid to have it done. I did a better job (at least on most of it) than the subs I've used for other stuff... but good enough and done in an afternoon are sometimes better than 'almost perfect' but took 5 weeks. biggrin.gif

I'm glad you like them... they are definitely some very nice looking and (based on the measurements at least) great sounding little monitors. thumb.gif
post #96 of 124
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DiGiCiDAL View Post

And that is where my dilemma comes in on so many projects. Although there is definitely a nice savings represented there (based on the 'realistic' estimate you've saved well over $300)... however, when you consider the time spent... you're making minimum wage or less pretty quickly. rolleyes.gif

I realize that these speakers (just like my computer and projects around the house I've done) were undertaken as a combination of research, experimentation, and needing a reason to have fun with your 3D printer... in which case - as a hobby should be - it's time well spent regardless of the implied 'hourly rate'. I spent close to 200 hours doing all the interior moldings, painting, cabling, etc... in my house before we moved in... and I could have subbed the whole thing out for less than $3K probably. But I found it relaxing and a welcome change from staring at a monitor for hours on end. In hindsight however, I should have just paid to have it done. I did a better job (at least on most of it) than the subs I've used for other stuff... but good enough and done in an afternoon are sometimes better than 'almost perfect' but took 5 weeks. biggrin.gif

I'm glad you like them... they are definitely some very nice looking and (based on the measurements at least) great sounding little monitors. thumb.gif

Absolutely agree with you, there is no money to be saved here. I don't have an exact number on how many hours I've spent on this project so far, but it's more than 100 and probably closer to 200 with all the experiments and measurements and I'm not done yet. But I do enjoy it, so like any other hobby, it's not about the money smile.gif

Ah yeah, I usually also do painting, wallpaper etc myself, not so much because there is a lot to be saved, but I like to do it. OK, I have to admit sometimes I take way too long to get it done, but once done, it does give me some satisfaction smile.gif

So far I've spent a lot of time using the speakers, and I haven't made any further changes to them, which is usually a good sign. I've been using them together with a sub. In that combination I really enjoy them. They are not very efficient, but capable of playing much louder than I need, they do require a 40-50W amplifier as a minimum though. The sub woofer is a modified Polk 12" that I originally bought on impulse because I wanted to try it. It was a discounted demo model. But I really hated it when I got it home and hooked it up. It did give loads of bass, but sounded mostly like someone was standing in the corner kicking an empty wooden box. Anyway that is another story, after lots of added dampening and some solder iron tweaks on the active filter, it's more acceptable now.

I am considering building a 2nd pair for surround. I don't feel there is any need for a center speaker in a computer surround system as it's only for one person sitting centered.
post #97 of 124
Quote:
Originally Posted by jvjessen View Post

Absolutely agree with you, there is no money to be saved here. I don't have an exact number on how many hours I've spent on this project so far, but it's more than 100 and probably closer to 200 with all the experiments and measurements and I'm not done yet. But I do enjoy it, so like any other hobby, it's not about the money smile.gif

Ah yeah, I usually also do painting, wallpaper etc myself, not so much because there is a lot to be saved, but I like to do it. OK, I have to admit sometimes I take way too long to get it done, but once done, it does give me some satisfaction smile.gif

So far I've spent a lot of time using the speakers, and I haven't made any further changes to them, which is usually a good sign. I've been using them together with a sub. In that combination I really enjoy them. They are not very efficient, but capable of playing much louder than I need, they do require a 40-50W amplifier as a minimum though. The sub woofer is a modified Polk 12" that I originally bought on impulse because I wanted to try it. It was a discounted demo model. But I really hated it when I got it home and hooked it up. It did give loads of bass, but sounded mostly like someone was standing in the corner kicking an empty wooden box. Anyway that is another story, after lots of added dampening and some solder iron tweaks on the active filter, it's more acceptable now.

I am considering building a 2nd pair for surround. I don't feel there is any need for a center speaker in a computer surround system as it's only for one person sitting centered.

Hmmm... this 'story' you allude to is most interesting to me. I got this wireless Polk sub for free some years back and I found the same kicking the box sound - in fact it was so 'floppy' that I wound up just pulling out an old Infinity 8" sub from a really crap set of satellites I got when one of the big box stores went out of business (I forget the name but it was before Circuit City went BK...). I never bothered to crack it open because I just figured it was a lost cause - but if I could stuff it some more and do some 'tweaking' to get it tighter... I could have a nice bedroom system sub (if my wife will allow a sub in the bedroom that is). biggrin.gif

Have to agree with the center channel - although I'm not even sure I like surround for the PC. I guess that's mostly because I've never had truly accurate speakers for mine - and placement was sub-optimal as well. It just always seemed that the rears actually killed the imaging for gaming, etc... and I was more accurate (in FPS) with just a stereo pair. Your speakers are much more accurate that what I've used in the past so it probably will be helpful in your case.
post #98 of 124
Which means it's got a very sharp rolloff on the lower ends i think.
I use a 8" JBL GT82D sub from the 90s on my desktop sound system biggrin.gif Great bass with just 3-5W (93db/W duh) and i placed it in a sealed enclosure that isn't too big
End result? The sub itself has a low x-max but i couldn't care much but it has great mid-lowend response with a decent lowend rolloff so it gives very tight response and none of the boomy bass people love these days

For some odd reason it sounds much better than those crappy (To me, they are crappy but people think they are the best computer sound systems) logitech giant subs
Ayase Eli
(20 items)
 
Testbench
(10 items)
 
MC Server
(13 items)
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD Ryzen 7 1700 ASRock X370 SLI Killer Zotac GTX1070 "FE" with ID Cooling Frostflow 240G Crucial BallistiX Sport LP 16GB 8x2GB 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveCooling
Zotac SSD Premium 480GB OCZ Vector 180 480GB Hitachi 7K3000 3TB 7200rpm ID Cooling Frostflow 240L 
CoolingCoolingCoolingCooling
ID Cooling Frostflow 240G Phanteks F140MP x2 CoolerMaster Silencio FP120 x2 Phanteks F140SP 
CoolingMonitorKeyboardPower
Delta AFB1212SH x2 Dell U2713HM CM Storm MECH FSP Aurum PT 1200 
CaseMouseMouse PadAudio
Phanteks Enthoo Pro Logitech G102 Tesoro Aegis X3 Virtus.Pro AKG K7XX 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel i7 6700k Gigabyte Z170X-UD5 Depends Depends 
Hard DriveCoolingMonitorKeyboard
Plextor M5S Depends Dell U2312HM CM Storm Quickfire Rapid-i 
PowerMouse
FSP Aurum PT 1200 CM Storm Mizar 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel i7 2600 4GHz Gigabyte Z77X D3H Intel HD Graphics 2000 obviously Kingston HyperX Genesis 4X4GB DDR3 1600 
Hard DriveCoolingCoolingCooling
Intel 530 240GB Deepcool Captain 240 Arctic Cooling Bionix 140 Delta AFB1212L 
OSPowerCase
Windows 10 Pro CoolerMaster G750M NZXT Switch 810 
  hide details  
Reply
Ayase Eli
(20 items)
 
Testbench
(10 items)
 
MC Server
(13 items)
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD Ryzen 7 1700 ASRock X370 SLI Killer Zotac GTX1070 "FE" with ID Cooling Frostflow 240G Crucial BallistiX Sport LP 16GB 8x2GB 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveCooling
Zotac SSD Premium 480GB OCZ Vector 180 480GB Hitachi 7K3000 3TB 7200rpm ID Cooling Frostflow 240L 
CoolingCoolingCoolingCooling
ID Cooling Frostflow 240G Phanteks F140MP x2 CoolerMaster Silencio FP120 x2 Phanteks F140SP 
CoolingMonitorKeyboardPower
Delta AFB1212SH x2 Dell U2713HM CM Storm MECH FSP Aurum PT 1200 
CaseMouseMouse PadAudio
Phanteks Enthoo Pro Logitech G102 Tesoro Aegis X3 Virtus.Pro AKG K7XX 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel i7 6700k Gigabyte Z170X-UD5 Depends Depends 
Hard DriveCoolingMonitorKeyboard
Plextor M5S Depends Dell U2312HM CM Storm Quickfire Rapid-i 
PowerMouse
FSP Aurum PT 1200 CM Storm Mizar 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel i7 2600 4GHz Gigabyte Z77X D3H Intel HD Graphics 2000 obviously Kingston HyperX Genesis 4X4GB DDR3 1600 
Hard DriveCoolingCoolingCooling
Intel 530 240GB Deepcool Captain 240 Arctic Cooling Bionix 140 Delta AFB1212L 
OSPowerCase
Windows 10 Pro CoolerMaster G750M NZXT Switch 810 
  hide details  
Reply
post #99 of 124
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DiGiCiDAL View Post

Hmmm... this 'story' you allude to is most interesting to me. I got this wireless Polk sub for free some years back and I found the same kicking the box sound - in fact it was so 'floppy' that I wound up just pulling out an old Infinity 8" sub from a really crap set of satellites I got when one of the big box stores went out of business (I forget the name but it was before Circuit City went BK...). I never bothered to crack it open because I just figured it was a lost cause - but if I could stuff it some more and do some 'tweaking' to get it tighter... I could have a nice bedroom system sub (if my wife will allow a sub in the bedroom that is). biggrin.gif

Have to agree with the center channel - although I'm not even sure I like surround for the PC. I guess that's mostly because I've never had truly accurate speakers for mine - and placement was sub-optimal as well. It just always seemed that the rears actually killed the imaging for gaming, etc... and I was more accurate (in FPS) with just a stereo pair. Your speakers are much more accurate that what I've used in the past so it probably will be helpful in your case.

Subs are an interesting topic, usually involving more tears than smiles biggrin.gif

My Polk is this one: PSW12, no fancy wireless or anything





I would classify it as a typical mid range sub woofer. I't reasonably sturdy built, ~1" MDF with internal bracing. But I was shocked to see, that the only dampening inside, was a tiny strip of polyfill. So small that squeezed together it could fit in a coffee cup (not even mug sized). They might as well have saved the $0.05 and left it out.

OK, it is correct that the general rule of thumb is that a vented box shouldn't be over stuffed with dampening material, but the Polk stuffing was just ridiculous.

I did try things like various amounts of foam in the vent before taking it apart, but never succeeded in getting a reasonable balance.

The greatest improvement was to cover all inside surfaces with acoustic foam, as far as I remember I used 50/50 of 1 1/2" and 2 1/2 inch thickness, doesn't have to be done super exact, but make sure it's flat on the surfaces. About $50 worth of foam will do it. That pretty much transformed the sub from horrible to reasonable.

It's this kind of foam I used:



You can then fine tune with some more foam or poly fill behind the driver if needed.

I think I took some pictures of when I had it apart, I usually always takes pictures of everything when I do something, mostly for my own reference, like, when time to put it back together and you start wondering if the red wire went there or there biggrin.gif I'll try see if I can find them and if any of them are useful.

I did also modify a couple of resistors and a capacitor on the filter/amp board to give it a bit steeper slope on the crossover frequency, it was however only a minor improvement.
post #100 of 124
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveLT View Post

Which means it's got a very sharp rolloff on the lower ends i think.
I use a 8" JBL GT82D sub from the 90s on my desktop sound system biggrin.gif Great bass with just 3-5W (93db/W duh) and i placed it in a sealed enclosure that isn't too big
End result? The sub itself has a low x-max but i couldn't care much but it has great mid-lowend response with a decent lowend rolloff so it gives very tight response and none of the boomy bass people love these days

For some odd reason it sounds much better than those crappy (To me, they are crappy but people think they are the best computer sound systems) logitech giant subs

Personally I don't have a preference between closed and vented tuning, as long as it's well executed. They both have advantages and disadvantages. A closed box is always a safe choice.

The biggest problem, besides poor quality, with many of the Logitech etc systems with "sub" is that the speaker are simple not capable of reaching low enough in frequency to successfully integrate with a sub. And what they call a sub isn't really a sub, it's more like a lower mid range/upper bass in a box. I do have a Logitech set myself, somewhere, but I haven't used it for a long time, I guess at the time I got it, I was a question of sound vs no sound smile.gif

I feel the best integration is when you cannot tell, by listening, where the sub is located, even if it's right next to you or behind you. For that to happen the crossover point must be below 70-80Hz, the lower the better. But using a sub is always a compromise, it can never compete with large speakers capable of producing low end on their own.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Other Hardware Mods
Overclock.net › Forums › Case Mods & Cases › Other Hardware Mods › [Build Log] High Quality PC Speakers Design and Build