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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My uncle wants me to upgrade the crossover within the SVS Ultra. anybody have any experience of modifying crossovers? I had taken a photo of the crossover board when I swapped my warrantied woofer out and he claims the caps are about 20 cents and the inductors are iron core and I could really benefit from installing air core inductors and audiophile grade caps and said I will see a 200-300% improvement with the sound of the speakers from doing this.

...at the cost of voiding warranty obviously.

Anyone here have experience with this and/or want to comment?
 

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If "upgrading" your crossovers would really make any difference dont you think SVS would have done so already in the initial design? Were not talking about a fly by night company trying to cut corners, SVS would not skimp on that area.
I disagree with your uncle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
If "upgrading" your crossovers would really make any difference dont you think SVS would have done so already in the initial design? Were not talking about a fly by night company trying to cut corners, SVS would not skimp on that area.
I disagree with your uncle.
Well that was my thoughts too... were not talking some 200 dollar speakers. There is a reason they are 2k. obviously there is a markup, overheads, shipping costs etc. In the end they probably are built from about 600 bucks worth of parts but then again so is a 500 dollar pair of speakers too... same overheads, profits etc.

I'm not saying they cut corners at all, maybe he is. However he did build his own crossover network for his Apogee Duetta II signature speakers and spent 3k on the pair doing so. However only he can tell you the gains it made since I was not there to witness it.

He said for about $300 he could upgrade my crossovers in my front 3.
 

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A 200-300% improvement? Really? Your uncles implication suggests SVS designed a mediocre speaker to save a few bucks on the crossover of their premier speaker line. I really doubt that myself.

I'm with Tony - this is just a very bad idea, one that should be dismissed before it goes too much further and a costly mistake is made.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Don't be scared.

I didn't say I was going to just inquired for peoples thoughts. How about some kinda positive thought.

I've inquired into SVS about their design and their thoughts of the solid core inductors vs. air core etc. Just curious to see what they say :)
 

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What leads you to believe I'm afraid of something? I'm not scared by what you're considering, but honestly there's nothing positive to say about the idea. It's a bad one, plain and simple. If you're merely looking for someone to endorse this mistake by saying "sure, go ahead!" then I'm not that person. I suspect you won't find anyone else who will encourage you to proceed. You're free to do whatever you'd like, of course, but it's not realistic to assume many (any?) others will concur with what you're contemplating.
 

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Yea, I had the same reaction. Being from the Netherlands means English is not his primary language though, so I think his intent was lost when translated. Best I can tell is he's suggesting that somehow a picture of the old amp is going to benefit the OP when he modifies the new one, so why not try it. Regardless of the language used, it still comes off sounding like a bad idea.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well it's not trolling. After looking it over they do in fact have ONE air inductor and it's for the tweeter only. They use an air inductor and a hingtat mkt 9.1uf cap w/ a Q4 Audyn cap in parallel w/ that hingtat for the tweeter. Parts express sells this cap it's this one: http://www.parts-express.com/audyn-...lypropylene-foil-crossover-capacitor--027-114

there is another tiny cap which is made by BP which is this one: http://www.amazon.com/Parts-Express-150uF-Non-Polarized-Capacitor/dp/B0002KR4D4

and then two big ones one a 150uf and another a 170uf and my uncle says those are very big for a crossover but they are also made by hingtat. My findings of hingtat is this site: http://www.hingtat.cn/en/index.html

which looks like they make electronics which could be the manufacture of their crossover. I also know by warranty of my blown 8" woofer they charge me $60 for a woofer.

The cement resisters are all 20w which is a good thing they are robust and most are 20w 5RJ which are a $2 part and there are 7 of them and then you have the iron core inductors which are 5 of them total.

All in all I'd say the crossover complete assembly on a cost standpoint of manufacturing is probably less than $30 maybe even less than 20 or even 15 at their cost. I think for SVS parts/woofers/mdf/etc is probably around 200 bucks total for the speaker and of course you have marketing/overheads/shipping/warranties etc that drive the price up and don't forget profits. ALL companies will have these markups so I'm not disputing this to be bad at all.

Am I saying this is bad?... no... am I a troll... NO. So do not accuse me of one. I am just learning and investigating. I really love the sound of my Ultras. Can installing $400 worth of crossover parts improve performance??? well... thats what I wanna find out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Talley, I'm just curious what improvements you'll be looking for.
I have no idea. It's very intriguing though. I know I spout "my uncle" alot but he always says improve every single aspect that you can possibly improve. Don't just install better speaker cables... cryo them, change the terminals out to better ones, put better receptacles, better isolation, better speaker placement, better acoustics in the room...

he says you must improve everything and leave nothing untouched. Obviously my ears cannot improve lol but you get the point. Why spend 50k on a system and install it in a bare walled room is his point. Do everything. The purpose of your room is not comfort or to look cool... it's to be functional put stuff where it needs to be and work around it. if it means having a giant bass trap in the middle of the screen well then... hmm... ok maybe thats a bit far but hopefully you get the point.

So... why have a weak link?

His words to me was... spend $600 and lets get the crossovers improved and you'll turn your ultra system into a speaker setup that would compete against a 20,000 speaker system (maybe a bit exaggeration).

I came here seeking advice as I always try to do sanity checks and immediately got scolded and was told SVS would never do cheap... and now we know they have. I always try to remain open (which is why I seek other advice other then my uncle) and I also try to remain economical as much as I can too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Maybe this is another reason the B&W 802 series costs alot. Look at 2:10 at their crossover design... all audiophile grade components

 

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I can certainly get behind the concept of improve everything. I would certainly never put a pro-charger on my small block without studding my main caps, or splaying them.
I kinda expected your answer to be something like, it will improve cohesion between drivers, or allow more power handling or something similar. At first glance it just seems like without a specific target, 600 bucks might be better spent on a 2nd sub that you have some expectations for. I'm not saying the "upgrade" won't provide great results because I just don't know. It seems SVS would have calculated every component to the Nth degree for the intended purpose and cabinet, and overall design. Somewhere in my mind it seems similar to putting 1"fuel line on your car just because it's bigger, but won't do a thing. I can't wait to have a dedicated room someday. Then I can make my wife wonder why the I put baskets on the ceiling.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I can certainly get behind the concept of improve everything. I would certainly never put a pro-charger on my small block without studding my main caps, or splaying them.
I kinda expected your answer to be something like, it will improve cohesion between drivers, or allow more power handling or something similar. At first glance it just seems like without a specific target, 600 bucks might be better spent on a 2nd sub that you have some expectations for. I'm not saying the "upgrade" won't provide great results because I just don't know. It seems SVS would have calculated every component to the Nth degree for the intended purpose and cabinet, and overall design. Somewhere in my mind it seems similar to putting 1"fuel line on your car just because it's bigger, but won't do a thing. I can't wait to have a dedicated room someday. Then I can make my wife wonder why the I put baskets on the ceiling.

Well... in that case. This could be described as going from 87 octane to 100 octane.

I'm in the working to do everything. Money spent toward 2nd sub... it's coming too. I'm convincing myself now to move to the XMC-1 and XPR-5 for my pre/pro and amp. For whatever reason I just want to try them. All of my speaker cable and all of the power feeders to my outlet box will be removed and get cryo'd but I will do the cry once I get my isolation transformer as I want to cryo it too.

I'm also fixing to start treating my room acoustically and suspect that will be a 6 month process to work out the kinks and get it close.

In the end... I'll do as much as I can for the room I have. The speakers I like and just want to improve where they can be improved.
 

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Talley, my speakers cost $7000 new back in 1985 this is what the crossovers look like inside.


Not pretty by any means however they sound fantastic! Dont go by what you see. Go by what you hear.
 

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^^^ +1
My Revels were over $20k in 2001. I replaced a failed crossover in '06 and it forever changed my view of expensive speaker cable. Even with all the research, science, and technology that went into the design, they used what looks like plain 12AWG stranded copper.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
^^^ +1
My Revels were over $20k in 2001. I replaced a failed crossover in '06 and it forever changed my view of expensive speaker cable. Even with all the research, science, and technology that went into the design, they used what looks like plain 12AWG stranded copper.

This is the case for any internal wiring. Your less suspectable to cross talk when you are mainly dealing with 2 or 3 way circuits (crossovers). SVS did a good job by placing the tweeter circuit on one corner and on the diagonal the woofer circuit the midways got the other diagonal corners. However outside the speaker your dealing with all sorts of issues when ran near other lines. But I agree... keep the cable simple for best sound.

Although I would of preferred twisted strands to eliminate inductance this may be something I do as I'll be replacing the internal wiring inside the Ultras.

OH... and the best wire is a bare uninsulated copper wire. The minute you start adding insulation you add dielectric which pushes capacitance into the cable which leads to inductance BUT you have to have insulation to prevent shorting so it's a catch 22. Definately stay way from large bundled power cords/speaker cables. After I cryo my speaker cables I'll remove the outer jacket and just run twisted wires as that will be all thats needed.... another reason why I ran ENT in the walls was to help strip away the outer PVC jacket which is poor dielectric. Any polyolefin insulated wire is better than PVC material.
 

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This is the case for any internal wiring. Your less suspectable to cross talk when you are mainly dealing with 2 or 3 way circuits (crossovers).
I suppose all but the most esoteric speaker designs might use "plain" internal wiring. I can't be certain, because I've only seen one. But I have heard of both speakers and electronics (mostly amps), which are internally wired with signature cables like Van den Hul, Siltech, and others. None that I know of claimed to improve crosstalk, so I suppose your generalization can be extrapolated into the realm of fact. Exactly what type of crosstalk are we talking about? Between inductors themselves, between inductors and wiring, or between signals flowing within the wiring?

OH... and the best wire is a bare uninsulated copper wire. The minute you start adding insulation you add dielectric which pushes capacitance into the cable which leads to inductance.
One of the most parroted objections for poor dielectric material is that it initially stores signal energy only to release it at a later time, causing smearing of fine detail. Assuming such an effect were audible, both the upstream equipment and the playback environment would need to be highly resolving. So even if you make the changes, how do you propose to discern any possible differences given that your room is not yet treated? And how would you figure out if your changes were "better" than a stock sub?

Definately stay way from large bundled power cords/speaker cables.
Why do you (or your uncle) promote that belief? Power cords have different requirements than speaker cable. Shielding alone can add bulk to a power cable.

Any polyolefin insulated wire is better than PVC material.
Different, maybe. Better? How?
 
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