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Old    Clubmyke (clubmyke)      Join Date: Aug 2004       10-20-2006, 7:02 PM Reply   

i think it would be okay to roll your own drivers/crossovers IF you access / ability to make killer custom cans/cabinet and clamp system..

then you have a great looking and sounding custom job...if your looking to save some coin, looked for used.. there was a nvs 1010 for $1200 (jrod may come down in price)..

i have seen skylon reference V's go for $500 to $800 and they sound okay as is but really shine with a driver/crossover upgrade (my tower fits 3 skylon IV's - the iv is my personal fave)...not to mention they are very light and come down really easily..

regardless, this was a great thread... let us know what you go with..
Old    Craig (yosquire)      Join Date: Jun 2005       10-20-2006, 7:17 PM Reply   
I'm tending to agree with Clubmyke.. Though, as I said before, if I had to do it again, I'd do it exactly the same. Plus I didn't like my neighbors anyway --(hours of tuning in my driveway)-- now they don't like me much either.

Perhaps reviewing some of Duane's suggestions a little closer. Bi-Amplification. I did this in my setup because I didn't want to take on building a x-over. It worked quite well. I used a Phoenix Gold electronic low-level cross-over that cost $22 of e-bay. I could change the x-over point on both the high & lows by swapping out a $.20 resister network. (I can give you a parts list) Plus it had 180 degree phase adjustment for the lows, Mixed mono/Stereo switch. Then I used a graphic EQ to take the "ear-crushing" edge out of the Compression Drivers. I could also power down either amp to determine where the SPL is at on either the horns or the mid-bass.

I've been hesitent to suggest any drivers as my experience base in drivers is very low. I don't want to suggest something and have you waste your money. I can share an experience though. Duane made a reference that the quality drivers don't have a big impact at 80' and 25mph. I agree with this too. Now I'll disbark from Duane's valid comments and continue with my opinion. In building my setup I used all JBL equipment. Why? because I thought to myself "I don't know much about this subject, I better go with good stuff because it'll hopefully cover up imperfections in my engineering." Well, at 80' the JBLs sound near the same as the Skylons. At 10 feet I like the sound of the JBLs better. Part of my problem was the weight of the JBLs, my compression drivers weigh 15lbs each. The Mid-Bass drivers weigh 20lbs each. On the flip side, the Mid-Bass drivers have a SPL of 100db, and the compression drivers are 110db. Pound for Pound the JBLs are louder than the Rubicon 450s. I can get the Rubis up there in SPL, but I have to push so much more power to them. I'm rambling, The JBL drivers that I used are IMO far higher quality than the drivers in the Rubicons. Though at 80' the only thing that matters is SPL. And it's hard to get anything below 500-700hz back to the rider. The pre-built stuff (NVS, Wetsounds) is going to get that frequency range back there much better.

If I could suggest one thing, I'd try going with three 8" mid-bass and one compression driver. HLCD Tower Speakers.doc
This is based off NVS's orginal design

Duane's orginal DIY post is around here in the archive sections. It maybe worth searching for it and reading it.

(Message edited by yosquire on October 20, 2006)
Old    David Ericson (sea_ray_dave)      Join Date: Dec 2004       10-21-2006, 7:56 AM Reply   
JBL makes great equipment, like Klipschorn, it is heavy and bulky. But it sound great. Have you ever seen Klipsch crossovers on the higher end equipment? They are monstrous- but they work excellent.

Outside of towing subwoofers on tube behind the boat, in front of the rider, wondered what that would sound like-- it will be very difficult to get anything below 400hz back at 80 feet.

Please do not take the tow the woofer comment as an idea-- it is a bad idea. A cool one-- but bad. You could use one of those super mable tubes and throw a giant woofer cabinet on it.

The post on that DIY project above has some good ideas and info too. Duane's project is contained in this thread but here it again:
Old    Craig (yosquire)      Join Date: Jun 2005       10-21-2006, 9:35 AM Reply   
Wait Wait Wait, You're on to something here. A custom built Fiberglass Dingy Sub Woofer Cabinet. A little time-delay circuitry on your pre-amp side and your gold!

One that's symetrical so it can roll and still be fine. A forth-order bandpass with the vent tube out the back center.

Ok..I concur, cool idea..not practical.

So I have a question for you audio experts. What properties is it that makes it so difficult to get < 400hz back to the rider? Up to this point from my experience I've just taken it to be truth without really understanding why. And yet, cars will go by my house and they're getting < 200hz dispersion more than 350 feet.
Old    Mikeski (mikeski)      Join Date: Aug 2003       10-21-2006, 11:58 AM Reply   
I have to thank everybody that has provided input into this thread. I had lots of fun putting together my DIY system and as I read through this thread it reminds me of all the little things that I had forgotten.

This is a great project to undertake if you are up for a project. If you are looking for a productive pass-time for the winter this is a great one. But I must caution that this project can be painstaking. My wife got really tired of me disappearing into the garage to work on my project after dinner every night.

In reality if you are not looking for a project the smart choice is just to buy this stuff. The current offerrings from NVS and Wetsounds are likely to be better than anything you come up with. If you truly hate the appearance of NVS or Wetsounds then it might be worth trying to build a nice custom fiberglass tower box but that is another project in itself.

Once Clay from Sound Illusions starts to slow down for winter I hope to help him with a custom solution for the tower of his pink poodle!

This thread needs more pix!

Here is a good example of what not to do (for so many reasons):

Old    Clubmyke (clubmyke)      Join Date: Aug 2004       10-21-2006, 12:12 PM Reply   
whats the story ????
Old    David Ericson (sea_ray_dave)      Join Date: Dec 2004       10-21-2006, 1:45 PM Reply   
All I can say is weight, it's heavy. And I noticed the left 6x9 grill is bent in. Looks like a DIY project and store bought solution to have the best of both worlds??

Thoughts on just a passive crossover at 3500hz to the HLCD?

Makes sense to cut out the overlap from the 8 inch and that should produce a more even level sound. Then use the amp crossover to cut out lows below 120hz and run the 8's wide open off the amp.

Mike, Did you try polyfill in those cans to get rid of the aluminum ringing sound? or just use sound deadening material?

I will shoot pictures of this project as it happens so this one will be well documented too.
Old    Mikeski (mikeski)      Join Date: Aug 2003       10-21-2006, 1:46 PM Reply   
Just an ugly tower I took a picture of one day. Deafcon 5s (mistake) + ugly home built wedge box with random 6x9s = lots of weight and lots of ugliness
Old    Mikeski (mikeski)      Join Date: Aug 2003       10-21-2006, 2:00 PM Reply   
My cans were lightly stuffed with polyfill.

XO @ 3500 kept the power handling on the HLCD up and rolled off the horn before it got down to the mid-range uglies (800-2k). You could try lots of different stuff, maybe 4k @ 12db if you are running the mids wide open. If you have the time you could solder up 3 or 4 options, better yet get some inexpensive amps like those little Blaupunkt amps I used for my testing. Enable the electronic XOs and start turning the dials until your ears like what you hear.

Do not try to tune them in an open room or at near field (like in a garage), that sound has very little in common with what you will hear on the water. Best solution is in an open space with no walls in the distance. When we did the Wetsounds tests we did it where they were firing out to the bay, no walls for reflection within sight. My early testing was done in a big transit center parking lot next to a loud freeway, I would pace off 60-100' and listen at that distance on and off axis.
Old    Kirk Johnson (akdoc)      Join Date: Feb 2004       10-21-2006, 5:25 PM Reply   
Use Quiet Kote from parts express to line the cans, it takes away all the aluminum sound and dampens it nicely.
Old    Craig (yosquire)      Join Date: Jun 2005       10-21-2006, 9:38 PM Reply   
I too have enjoyed this thread quite a bit.

More Pictures?

Notice the size of the pop can compared to the JBL compression driver?
Old    David Ericson (sea_ray_dave)      Join Date: Dec 2004       10-22-2006, 8:32 AM Reply   
Have you used this spray in your cans?
I am wondering how it sticks to raw aluminum

I pulled the trigger on the drivers. 2 Beta 8A's and 2 Beta 8CX's using the Selenium DH200e-e HLCD. I have a 12db 3500hz 4 ohm crossover that uses a small resistor, from my old days, that I will use as the initial crossover starting point. I am going to try the coaxes on the outsides of the 4 driver set up to start.

Left Can 1 Left Can 2........Right Can 3 Right Can 4
Coax-------Mid Bass...........Mid Bass-----Coax

I will take of pictures and post, probably under a new thread because of time involved.
Old    Kirk Johnson (akdoc)      Join Date: Feb 2004       10-22-2006, 8:47 AM Reply   

Yep, I used the spray and it sticks to the aluminum just fine. I like it better than polyfill, I think it makes for a cleaner sound in this kind of application.
Old    Kirk Johnson (akdoc)      Join Date: Feb 2004       10-22-2006, 8:48 AM Reply   
What are you putting the HLCD's in now?
Old    David Ericson (sea_ray_dave)      Join Date: Dec 2004       10-22-2006, 8:48 AM Reply   
Your set up looks heavy before any box. But the choice on drivers is nice. Very high end quality.

One of the main goals of this project is to keep the tower weight down. I am calculating around 20 pounds per side or less. And hopefully sound good. When it is completed, I invite everyone to comment. If you are in the Houston area, I will set up a place to see and hear it. I can take feedback, that is what DIY is all about- the end result. Estimated total project cost is $750 not including labor time.

Everyone that has participated in this thread so far knows or has an idea as to the end result. I thank all of you for your input and suggestions. It is time to construct, analysis paralysis as Duane says, is over for now. Fine tune/adjust time is coming.


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