Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build - Home Theater Forum and Systems - HomeTheaterShack.com

 1Likes
Reply
 
Thread Tools
post #1 of 15 Old 12-27-16, 01:05 AM Thread Starter
Shackster
Demitry
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Tucson AZ
Posts: 10
Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build

I have been working with audio since high school which was about 15 years ago... I'm getting old. I started with car audio and have transitioned in to home audio in the last few years. I watch a lot of movies and listen to a lot of music and have been wanting to build a system from scratch for years. When watching movies I think people put way too much emphasis on the screen/video but audio is what really makes the movie more of an experience/more immersive and in my opinion far more important.

The Design:
My main considerations
-Receiver power output
-Price
-Driver materials
-Cosmetics

Goal :
Relatively flat response over the audio range without the use of processing and keeping it moderately cheap

I own a Denon AVR-X4200 which puts out 125 W RMS (8 Ω/ohms, 20 Hz – 20 kHz with 0.05 % T.H.D.). I bought a referb for about $650 and haven't had an issue. I've had it about a year now and love it. I have a strong belief that you can make just about any driver sound good with the right input and the proper enclosure. So when selecting drivers I didn't bother buying drivers that needed more than 150 watts. After months of contemplating I decided to go with Dayton's Reference Series. They are moderately cheap, for the 9 speakers in my center and floor standing L & Rs cost under $300. I selected them because of the power handling , the materials they are made of, and reviews. I tend to prefer the sound of speakers that are made of paper, Kevlar, carbon fiber, or a combination of them. I dislike the sound of plastics, metal, or polyurethane. For tweeters, I like textile only. Metals are way too bright for my listening taste and ended up going with silk domes. I have no experience with planar or AMT tweeters. From what I've read they sound similar to textile but I need to listen to them before I ever commit to using them. The woofer is aluminum, but all my experience with woofers (car audio), I've never really notice differences in sonic properties with different cone materials.


The sub:
For the enclosure design I used HT Audio's BassBox 6 with a Dayton Reference RSS390HO-4 15in woofer. I tend to cross my subs over a little higher than most, I like my lower end strong. The original design I was going for a flat response from 25 - 200Hz. I decided to make some last minute cosmetic changes (after I cut the pieces) which took away from my internal volume and really affected my low end response. I attached the response graphs. I attempted my first MDF bend with this box. In the pic attached I tried to fill them with wood glue which caused a little warping in my kerchief cuts. What I don't have a pic of is I ended up filling the cuts with fiber bondo, it took about a pint to do it. The amp I used to power this sub is a old Cravin that I repaired. Its rated 1000 watts @ 4 ohms. I don’t have a 4 ohm dummy load to test it but I do get some serious output. I also installed relay so I could power it on and off via a trigger. I'm happy with the results. When I turn the system up it makes the dishes in my kitchen cabinets rattle and the doors shake in their frames!

Floor standing L & R:
I used a Dayton Audio RS180P-8 7 inch for the woofer, a Dayton Audio RS125P-8 5 inch for the mid, and a Dayton Audio DC28F-8 1-1/8" Silk Dome Tweeter. Since the enclosure only really effects the lower end of a driver, I sealed off the mid and the tweeter in its own enclosure because they will never hit those frequencies. I never intended for these speakers to play under 60Hz, so I tuned the enclosure to about 45 hz, that way I didn’t ever have to worry about the group delay, vent velocity, or cone displacement reaching problematic values. What I would do different next time is place the drivers closer together. When just playing audio to the L & R I feel there are some spatial issues. I knew this when I built them but I space them the way I did because of cosmetic reasons, I thought it looked better.

Center:
For the center I used 2 Dayton Audio RS125P-4 5 inch drivers wired in series and a Dayton Audio DC28F-8 1-1/8" Silk Dome Tweeter. I use the same logic for tuning the enclosure as the L & R. Having a home theater system like this, I have realized that this speaker is the most important. I use DTS Neutral X or Dolby surround for all my sources so most of the sound comes from the center. If I was to build another system I would consider making this channel my three way (adding a true woofer) rather than the L & R. I have to have symmetry though, which would require 5 speakers and I can't power 5 speakers with 125 watts.

Surround:
I'm just using 2 of my old surround speakers from my JVC all in one. They are mounted on the back of the couch and are fine for this space.

The Fraken Crossovers:
This took the most time to design. This was my first attempt at building a crossover from scratch. I understand the theory behind them and the components that make the up but have no real experience with what sounds best. Let's face it, most of us don't have a bench stock of these components lying around to test the differences. Also not to mention they are all expensive. The assembled crossover was the single most expensive part of the build. I even debated making my own larger inductors but by the time you buy the enameled wire they end up costing about the same and they won't be anywhere near as pretty. I used HT Audio's X-over Pro 3 to design these. I have another posting on the first issue I ran in to with the crossovers which is also attached below (the original responses). In my initial design I overlapped the mid and tweeter crossover points which according to the software gave me a theoretical flat response. This actually created a dip in my response that was about equal to the overlap. I am able to temporarily correct the problem with the processing with my Denon but I am going to reorder the components I need to fix this.

For the inductors I stuck to air cores except for the low pass filter in the 3 way. I have always read the are the best, but this driver primarily plays bass so I think it wouldn’t make a huge difference. There is a considerable price difference in large inductors when comparing air and iron cores, air cores were almost twice as much. For lower inductance values the prices where only a few dollars apart.

For the capacitors I used non-polar electrolytic…yes I know those are the worst to use but all the others are expensive. I will admit, there is something missing from the sound, tonality maybe, which could be because of the caps I used. I've done a lot of research in the last few weeks on why higher grade caps are better and what sounds better. I know its subjective but I'm starting to think there is validity to the whole capacitor thing. The commonality I have found in my research is the audio grade caps have low resonance/distortion. I think there is some measurable way to determining how a caps sounds but I have yet to find a good article that demonstrates this. I've been trying to find a brand with good technical data but is proving to be quite difficult. I want to know what I'm buying before I pay for them. Just because a capacitor says its audio grade or someone says it sounds good … I want to know why and how. I priced out what it would cost to swap out all the caps in my new designs and it around $200. So if anyone has good info or a good place to order from please let me know. Once I decide on the new caps I will replace them on one crossover and see what the difference is. Maybe I'll write a thread about it.

The build
I have acquired just about every tool I need for speaker box building over the years. My favorite is the jasper router circle jig with a compression bit. If you notice in all my progress pics I over cut everything by 1/16 to 1/8 of an inch. The reason for this is, no matter how much effort I put in to cutting my pieces they NEVER perfectly lineup..and I use a table saw (maybe I need a better one). Once assembled, I use a flush router bit to take off the extra which gives me a perfect seam every time. All my builds are screwless, I may occasionally use some on the inside of the enclosure. Wood glue and clamps form a stronger bond than screws. My enclosures are flat black with a real wood insert that I stained grey. The inserts are held in with neodymium magnets. I also routed out a channel so I could install LEDs. They are actually white but when they reflect off the black it looks like a blueish purple. In real life the glow is much more subtle then you see in the pic. They're really not that bright, i have them considerably dimmed. To power them I modified the terminal cups by adding a dc jack to them. I built another circuit in a project box that includes a trigger distribution so I don’t over load the trigger outputs of the denon. It also powers the LEDs and contains a bass chasing circuit I designed that will make the LEDs blink with the beat (controlled by a switch).

Build cost
Materials - $200
Speakers - $300
Sub - $160 (actually received this as a gift so it was free)
Crossovers - $200

Total $860 …so far
Attached Thumbnails
Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build-sub-box.jpg  

Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build-sub-inside.jpg  

Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build-sub-unpainted.jpg  

Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build-sub-finished.jpg  

Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build-speaker-progress.jpg  

Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build-speaker-progress-2.jpg  

Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build-speaker-progress-3.jpg  

Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build-speaker-progress-4.jpg  

Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build-crossover-parts.jpg  

Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build-crossover-essembled.jpg  

Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build-crossovers-all.jpg  

Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build-tv-center-support.jpg  

Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build-leds-off.jpg  

Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build-leds-.jpg  

ellisr63 likes this.

Last edited by Demitryk; 12-27-16 at 03:18 AM. Reason: Spelling
Demitryk is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 15 Old 12-27-16, 09:47 PM
HTS Senior Moderator
 
fusseli's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Colorado, USA
Posts: 1,921
My System
Re: Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build

First off, welcome to HTS!

Here are a few comments I took note of,

Quote:
In my initial design I overlapped the mid and tweeter crossover points which according to the software gave me a theoretical flat response.
What do you mean by this? Does switching the polarity of the tweeter connection fix this? What order electrical slopes were you shooting for?

- Beautiful sub! And nice AVR, I'm jealous there.
- For the towers, the design is fine but I think the biggest improvement would be to put the mid/tweet close together. CTC spacing looks way too big. If you can easily replace the baffles on the speakers, I bet you'd hear a difference with no other changes than dropping in a new baffle with the drivers close together. The crossover points will not work correct acoustically if the drivers are too far apart.
- The center looks nice. Horizontal MTM designs for centers are inherently limited by themselves. I still run my MTM center, too, but you can hear a huge difference at side locations off-axis. Not a big deal if you (the only one likely to care) sit dead-center.
- I think your component selection will be fine. I have tended to use mostly poly caps except for high-values. I'm not sold on going all poly and have never heard evidence of electrolytics. If you want to buy some placebo, add poly bypass caps I wouldn't dump that much extra money into re-capping to poly. Inductors on the other hand, the DCR can have a big impact depending where in the circuit it is, so I let that choose for me. You can use different types with the same L on purpose.
- Very nice routing and aesthetics. I like the color combos, style, and LEDs! (you put way more work in than I ever have )


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 signatures.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 signatures.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 signatures.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 signatures.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 signatures.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 signatures.
fusseli is offline  
post #3 of 15 Old 12-27-16, 10:38 PM Thread Starter
Shackster
Demitry
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Tucson AZ
Posts: 10
Re: Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build

If you take the center for instance, I did a low pass on the mids at 7000 Hz. For the tweeter I did a high pass starting at 2000 Hz. So the overlap is about 5000 Hz. According to my software this was the only way I could get the flattest response (yellow line in pic). Now this 5000Hz is about the bandwidth of the dip I get when I measure my response with REW and my calibrated mic. I tried to align the pics as best I can to demonstrate what I am talking about. If it was a phase issue, the response wouldn't look like this. The dip is flat.
Attached Thumbnails
Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build-untitled-1.jpg  

Demitryk is offline  
 
post #4 of 15 Old 12-27-16, 10:57 PM
HTS Senior Moderator
 
fusseli's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Colorado, USA
Posts: 1,921
My System
The dip could be from a mismatch in sensitivity between the drivers.... for example the midrange may not have as good dB/V senitivity... but the overlapping crossover range like that is generally not good, the drivers will be in parallel in the overlap and will present a low impedance load to the amp
fusseli is offline  
post #5 of 15 Old 12-27-16, 11:34 PM
HTS Senior Moderator
 
fusseli's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Colorado, USA
Posts: 1,921
My System
The hilltop you have inside 7-10kHz is perfectly predicted on the specsheet for your RS125P-8. The way to fix that would be cross the midrange much lower, like 2k or 3k, and let the tweet do everything above that. A whole number of octaves, like 3, away from the mid-low crossover point would be needed to align the system phase.
fusseli is offline  
post #6 of 15 Old 12-28-16, 09:52 AM
Elite Shackster
 
Owen Bartley's Avatar
OJ
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Toronto, Ontario
Posts: 2,074
My System
Re: Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build

Demitry, what an awesome addition the LEDs make. Very innovative, you should write up a how-to just on that subject (unless you want to keep your project unique), and I bet others would jump right in to do something similar. I would love to see how you did it in more detail, because they turned out amazing.

- OJ -

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 signatures.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 signatures.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 signatures.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 signatures.
Owen Bartley is offline  
post #7 of 15 Old 03-02-17, 06:48 PM
Shackster
 
Bolding220's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Posts: 7
Re: Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build

Wow that's some really nice work
Bolding220 is offline  
post #8 of 15 Old 04-08-17, 12:30 PM
Shackster
 
da-lite's Avatar
da-lite
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 7
Re: Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build

Great job , nice build.
da-lite is offline  
post #9 of 15 Old 12-06-18, 07:45 PM
Pending
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
Posts: 1
Re: Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build

I'm very impressed! I've been researching and developing my own DIY build for the last 6 months now. Your design is the closest thing I've found resembling it so far. The only thing i have is a 55in. 4k tv, and i wanted to build a sound system for both home theater and to have a nice surround sound system for listening to music. I feel that building your own system gives you WAY more bang for the buck if your willing to do it correctly.

i never intended for a this project to completely consume all of my free time (and income) but i finally purchased the first piece of the build. A Yamaha RX-V685 7.2-channel AV receiver., which has 125 watts rms per channel. As of now i'm intending on using the Dayton Refrence series Drivers and woofers, and building all the boxes and crossovers myself. I am planning on building 1/4 wave length box's for the two 12" subs, even though they will be huge. I still need to buy all the woodworking tools, but hopefully i will be able to get started on the build soon.

One of the problems i'm running into already is finding a decent mono block amp to power the two subs sufficiently without breaking the bank on it. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Most of the amplifiers I'm finding that are powerful enough for this are car audio, not home.
Mr.Best is offline  
post #10 of 15 Old 12-27-18, 12:23 PM
New Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
Posts: 3
Re: Custom Dayton Audio Reference Build

This is a great build!

I am in the designing phase of my first DIY sub build and never thought to add a beauty panel like this until I saw your set up! I think I want to give that a shot! Question though, do you notice any rattling or vibration from the neodymium magnets? I know these things are pretty strong, but are they strong enough to not rattle the front beauty panel when sub is pumping out some volume?

Thanks!
brian birginal is offline  
Reply

Bookmarks

Tags
audio , build , custom , dayton , reference

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now




PLEASE COMPLETE ALL REQUIRED FIELDS BELOW... THANKS!

REQUIRED FIELDS ON THIS PAGE
YOU MUST COMPLETE ALL OF THESE

Username
Password
Confirm Password
Email Address
Confirm Email Address
Random Question
Random Question #2




User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
PLEASE READ BELOW PRIOR TO ENTERING AN EMAIL ADDRESS!

ATTENTION!

YOU MUST ACTIVATE YOUR ACCOUNT!

Activation requires you reply to an email we will send you after you register... if you do not reply to this email, you will not be able to view certain areas of the forum or certain images... nor will you be able download software.

AN INVALID EMAIL ADDRESS WILL CAUSE YOUR ACCOUNT TO BE DELETED!

See our banned email list here: Banned Email List

We DO NOT respond to spamcop, boxtrapper and spamblocker emails... please add @hometheatershack DOT com to your whitelist prior to registering or you will get nowhere on your registration.


Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML is not allowed!
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

 


For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome