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Discussion Starter #1
I recently decided to dive into home audio. I have had a box set 5.1 system for some time. However- it's nothing worth writting home about. Technics receiver, Bose (aka Blose) rear satalites, as well as RCA bookshelf and center channel for the front stage. The substage is a Sony SA-WM40. I modified that several years ago (mod podge on the cone, polyfill, and clay on the basket).

I am now reading up and planning to build a new front stage over the winter- as a little project to keep me entertained.

Anway- should I use 2x 5.25" woofers or a single 8" woofer in each tower? I have the tweeters and midrange picked out. I also have the midbass picked out also- just not sure if I should go with one larger woofer or 2 smaller ones.

For substage- I have a few choices of subwoofers to choose from. I have a 12" Fi 'X' series, an Aura Force 12, or a TC Sounds DB500. I am a bit of a subwoofer whore.....I love to try different subs in my car audio installs. When it comes to car audio- I have always been a fan of sealed, single sub setups.
 

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So are you talking about a 3-way or a 4-way (I'm not sure if you are referring to the woofer and the midbass as the same thing or if you are intending to use a tweeter, a midrange, a midbass and a woofer or woofers). Do you have any experience with crossover design? How did you select the midrange and tweeter that you've already selected?

Jumping in and designing your own speaker can be a very involved process. Most DIYers will build a design that an experienced designer has put together rather than rolling their own from scratch. That's not to say that it can't be done, but driver selection and cross-over design is a big enough topic to fill many books.
 

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2 smaller woofers will recover a lot quicker than 1 large one. Depending on your amping of this you have lots of options. I built a pair of dual woofer towers last year from two different speaker kits for under a hundred. (This post is about the setup, not how good they sounded, how physically impressive they looked, or the fact I flipped the pair for $300) The cabinet was made to be two separate chambers. One held dual 8" foster woofers and a port. The top chamber had 2 foster 5.5" midranges and a soft dome tweeter and the a horn. I powered the woofers and horn 1 crossover connected to the A speaker out and the rest connected to the B Speaker out on my receiver.

the point is the speakers were slip a little over 11" but at nearly six feet tall they were physically impressive and put out a room filling sound that was great for both movies and music.
 

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2 smaller woofers will recover a lot quicker than 1 large one. Depending on your amping of this you have lots of options. I built a pair of dual woofer towers last year from two different speaker kits for under a hundred. (This post is about the setup, not how good they sounded, how physically impressive they looked, or the fact I flipped the pair for $300) The cabinet was made to be two separate chambers. One held dual 8" foster woofers and a port. The top chamber had 2 foster 5.5" midranges and a soft dome tweeter and the a horn. I powered the woofers and horn 1 crossover connected to the A speaker out and the rest connected to the B Speaker out on my receiver.
What do you mean by recover? Is this the old "smaller woofers sound faster than big woofers argument"? The benefit of a lighter cone is almost always going to be in high frequency extension than in what happens at low frequencies (ie where a woofer is working). Also note that two 5.25" woofers have less surface area than a single 8" and as such the 8" will have to move less to achieve the same SPL.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
So are you talking about a 3-way or a 4-way (I'm not sure if you are referring to the woofer and the midbass as the same thing or if you are intending to use a tweeter, a midrange, a midbass and a woofer or woofers). Do you have any experience with crossover design? How did you select the midrange and tweeter that you've already selected?

Jumping in and designing your own speaker can be a very involved process. Most DIYers will build a design that an experienced designer has put together rather than rolling their own from scratch. That's not to say that it can't be done, but driver selection and cross-over design is a big enough topic to fill many books.
Sorry- I am using terms from car audio. I am planning a 3 way using a dome tweet, a dome midrange, and either 1 larger or 2 smaller woofers/midbass. I have expirience building crossovers- however I am by no means a guru.

2 smaller woofers will recover a lot quicker than 1 large one. Depending on your amping of this you have lots of options. I built a pair of dual woofer towers last year from two different speaker kits for under a hundred. (This post is about the setup, not how good they sounded, how physically impressive they looked, or the fact I flipped the pair for $300) The cabinet was made to be two separate chambers. One held dual 8" foster woofers and a port. The top chamber had 2 foster 5.5" midranges and a soft dome tweeter and the a horn. I powered the woofers and horn 1 crossover connected to the A speaker out and the rest connected to the B Speaker out on my receiver.

the point is the speakers were slip a little over 11" but at nearly six feet tall they were physically impressive and put out a room filling sound that was great for both movies and music.
I used to believe that smaller woofers were quicker- but after doing a few different A/B tests using the same amp and the same woofer (different size of course), I'm not so sure I believe that any more.

Cone area would be comparable- possibly more on the 8" driver. I wonder why most every tower you see these days use multiple smaller woofers rather than a single larger one. More visually appealing?
 

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Cone area would be comparable- possibly more on the 8" driver. I wonder why most every tower you see these days use multiple smaller woofers rather than a single larger one. More visually appealing?
The cone area should be larger on the 8", of course it can vary depending on exactly how the driver is laid out and how large the cone really is.

I think that multiple smaller woofers are used for a couple of reasons. One is that you can make a narrower cabinet. Another could be that seeing a lot of drivers in a speaker can look impressive to some people. I'm more of a fan or large drivers.
 

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I agree with Geoff, I definitively prefer one larger woofer that 2 small !

I think that the tower concept is the reason why we see many 2 woofers configuration. I am always disapointed when listening to "tower configuraiton" compare to a big driver (Nautilus 800D vs 801D), but you got to make your own oppinion.

JP
 

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I think that multiple smaller woofers are used for a couple of reasons. One is that you can make a narrower cabinet. Another could be that seeing a lot of drivers in a speaker can look impressive to some people. I'm more of a fan or large drivers.
Like it or not the visual appearance of speakers, especially small ones, effects how we perceive the sound we hear. That is part of why so many people think bose are the be all end all. A tall skinny cabinet takes up a lot less floor space than anything with one with a big driver. So in the eyes and ears of most people two equally good sounding speakers one taking up ten or eleven inches along the wall will almost always sound better like a better speaker than one that takes up 18"

The second reason you see more small dual woofer towers is the fact most systems now are using a powered subwoofer to handle bass. Two small woofers are going to require less power to drive them as well, making them ideal for those who don't use external amps (most receivers simply don't have pre-outs anymore). For example I had an older ****** sony that didn't get it done for my 15" or 18" floor standers (despite the fact they said it gave 100 watts per channel), however it powered dual 8 and 10's just fine. My new Yamaha powers the 15's just fine even though I am pushing them through my adcom

Given my choice I would much prefer the big driver when I have to make a pick too, they sound warmer to me for music and video games, which gets significantly more play for me than movies right now.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
If it matters- the woofers/midbass in question are the Dynavox units that PE sells. A guy I work with built a set of towers around them- and I really like the sound. He also has a set of MBQ dome midrang- I believe they are the ones the Madisound has on clearance. I like the sound of those too- hard to believe they are a metal dome. I don't like his tweets though- much to harsh for my tastes.

I was going to somewhat mach his setup- aside from the tweets.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Midbass/woofer- The Dynavox LW5004PMR (5.25), LW600 (6.5), or LW800 (8.0) I started looking at the price of them a little more today. For $5 more/driver I can get the 6.5. So- why not stop splitting hairs and just get 2x 6.5 drivers per tower- best of both worlds :R

As far as midrange- I have the MB Quart 95-7048. Tweeters- Morel MDT-20.


I have heard the 8" Dynavox and MBQ before and they sounded quite good to me.
 

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The graph on the Madisound page (the only thing I could find) makes it looks like your midrangers are 89 dB efficient so I'd go with no woofer arrangement that has less efficiency. More efficiency is okay as it might allow you to do some baffle step compensation.

According to the PE website the efficiency (1W/m) of the LW800 is 88 dB. The LW600 is 87 dB. The LW5004PMR is 85 dB. If you are making a four ohm speaker wiring these in parallel will add 6 dB (someone fact check me on that).

Although I usually favor larger drivers in this case I'd go with two of the smaller ones. Either should have low enough extention since you are also running a sub.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
You are correct- well, in theory (I don't know the exact db- but I know it adds sensativity).

That's why I love message forums. It brings ideas from outside the box. I was just thinking about sound quality and frequency response- not the theory behind how things worked. I knew what you were saying- but never thought about it in this case.

2x 6.5's it is.

Thanks!!
 

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I'm going to be doing a 3-way soon using the Dayton RS52 mid, which is considered state of the art by many. The MB Quarts are discontinued parts so I'd be skeptical about using them unless you buy enough to have a few extras in case you smoke one.

I'm probably looking at a WTMWWW design using Dayton RS180's for the woofers, the RS52 mid, and the Vifa D26 truncated faceplate tweet.
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
i want this to be a bit of a learning expirience for me- so i don't really want to completely copy an existing setup.

i was just researching drivers for a center channel. i was looing at the price of the dayton rs series as well as the response curves and reviews. people seem to love them aside from the 2 frequency spikes....it got me to thinking......

i could get dual 8" dayton rs for the same price as the dynavox 6.5 or dual 7" dayton rs for $20 cheaper/driver than the dynavox. would those be a better option for my towers rather than the dynavox? given the fact i am somewhat new at designing crossovers- would it be easier for me to get the dynavox to work out since they don't seem to be plagued by the spikes?
 

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I really don't know anything about the Dynavox drivers but from my experience, the Dayton drivers are hard to beat at just about any price. Some of the Seas Excels are easier to work with due to their break-up being higher up, but for 3-4x the price I don't see much reason to use them. The Dayton woofers aren't that much harder to work with so I'd think a few extra dollars in crossover parts would be well worth it. I know the more I look at other drivers the harder and harder it is for me to justify trying something different.

Also, a 3-way crossover is going to cost substantially more than a 2-way, usually around 2x the cost.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I will have to read up a little more on proven crossover designs for both drivers and study the specs a little more:reading:. I know that I am most likely splitting hairs given my knowledge at this stage of the game- but that's just how I am. Electronic processing in car audio that I am used to, is much easier to understand and do- than building your own crossover.

Besides- the performance and cost of the Daytons, who doesn't think those just scream out SEXY:R
 

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Josh, if your project ends up anything like mine (and it seems to be going that way) you'll start out with an idea, and want to do everything yourself. then you'll read a bit, some of the folks here will chime in, your ideas will change, your design will get better... and before you know it, you'll just be building an existing design. lol. I don't know, for me it worked out great. I bought the Loudspeaker Design Cookbook, read it through, and ended up using their design for a rear surround speaker. If you're looking for a tower design, there are some really good ones out there at various price ranges, and I'd strongly recommend checking them out before you start, because you'll still get all the satisfaction of building yourself, while adding the bonus of having a pro design and measure (then redesign and remeasure)the components and performance until it sounds really great.
 

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I thought I'd chime in as well..

The smart move is to go with a proven design. That being said, I can appreciate the desire to go with something completely on your own. Just be aware that it's potentially frustrating, time consuming and expensive. My only real concern would be that you work on your design, build the speaker but not like the final results for "fill in the blank". I'm building a line array right now, but I'm going in to this with the knowledge that the final product can be disappointing -- i.e., I'm just doing it for the fun of it.

What's the point of this post? If you're doing this project for the fun of it and if it'll be ok if the final product isn't up to snuff, I say stay the course. However, if the final product should be "good", I'd agree with the others and say to look at some of the other "proven" designs.

Just my $0.02.

JCD
 

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Discussion Starter #20
i am doing it for a couple reasons- for good (better) sound and for fun. no matter what- it will sound better than what i am working with now.

i learned most everthing i know about car audio by trial and error as well as well as reading. i want to build something on my own and listen to it. whatever issues there are, i plan to read about how others have corrected similar issues, and go from there (how i did my first few car stereo installs). i want to see how and why things work- not just copy something and know it will work.

i don't know if that makes sense- but i know what i am trying to say:R
 
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