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I just finished building a pair of X-LS Encores and an X-CS Encore. All have fully upgraded point-to-point wired crossover networks, NoRez, AcustaStuff, and Electra tube connectors. They were built with 3/4" Baltic birch plywood with a 3/4" roundover on all edges, dark mahogany stain and amber shellack.

I tried to post pictures but apparently even the ones I downsized and saved for the web are too large for this post. I'll have to try reducing them further.

I have put about 100 hours on them for break in by setting up 9 hour long playlists of various music (classical, pop, rock, jazz and easy listening) and letting them play all day long a various volume levels (40-80 dB) while at work plus listening to music and watching movies in the evenings.

I have conducted listening tests between the X-LS Encore's, PSB Image B6's, and Klipsch RB-81 II's (reference series bookshelf). I will be writing up a more detailed account in a few days but the short version is that the X-LS Encores were superior to both the PSB's and Klipsch's in every way except sensitivity.

Mike
 

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I have downsized the pictures and saved them at a lower resolution so I will try posting them again. That didn't work either so I posted them to a gallery.

Here are the cabinets with NoRez damping material installed



Here are the cabinets with the crossover networks installed



Here are the completed speakers in the system without grills



And with the grills



Mike
 

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Thanks.

The grills are held on with 1/4"x3/8" Neodymium magnets. After I made the grill frames I drilled four 1/4" holes slightly more than 3/8" deep into the grill grames





Then I put 1/4" dowel points into the holes so I could mark their positions on the front baffles





After marking the positions on the baffles I stained the grill frames and glued in the magnets



I then drilled 1/4"x1/2" holes in the front baffles, glued in the magnets, then glued 1/4" birch dowels to fill in the holes. After the glue dried I flush cut the dowels to the baffle face and sanded





Next I test fit the grill frames to the cabinets





Mike
 

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Thanks Danny. They're sounding really good too. These are my first DIY speakers.

I'll have to admit I was a little skeptical about what they would sound like. I heard what you said about the percentage of parts cost to total price of retail speakers and, while it made sense, I wasn't really sure it would equate to major sound improvement. I didn't think anything would sound that much better than my new PSB's. However, since the total material cost for the upgraded kits and cabinets for the X-LS Encore & X-CS Encore was about $150 less than the PSB's, I decided to give your speakers a try.

Well, I'm a convert. These speakers are wonderful.

Mike
 

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Thanks Danny. They're sounding really good too. These are my first DIY speakers.

I'll have to admit I was a little skeptical about what they would sound like. I heard what you said about the percentage of parts cost to total price of retail speakers and, while it made sense, I wasn't really sure it would equate to major sound improvement. I didn't think anything would sound that much better than my new PSB's. However, since the total material cost for the upgraded kits and cabinets for the X-LS Encore & X-CS Encore was about $150 less than the PSB's, I decided to give your speakers a try.

Well, I'm a convert. These speakers are wonderful.

Mike
You're welcome and thanks for posting.
 

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Can the XLS Encore withstand loud playback at reference level (13feet distance to listening position)? How's the dynamic? Will it be suitable as HT speakers?
 

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Keep in mind it is a mini-monitor with a 6.5" woofer. There is an SPL limit. Power handling has never been an issue. I have not had any fail from too much power. Even when I pounded on them with 400 watt Melos tube amps. They ate it up just fine.
 

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Can the XLS Encore withstand loud playback at reference level (13feet distance to listening position)? How's the dynamic? Will it be suitable as HT speakers?
I have been using the X-LS Encores and X-CS Encore (center channel) pictured in this thread in a 5.1 HT setup for the past six months and they don't disappoint.

Mike
 

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I have been using them with a 200 watt amp and pushed them pretty hard. Surprising little speaker.
 

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Keep in mind it is a mini-monitor with a 6.5" woofer. There is an SPL limit. Power handling has never been an issue. I have not had any fail from too much power. Even when I pounded on them with 400 watt Melos tube amps. They ate it up just fine.
This is what I'm worried about...reference level movie playback.

I have been using the X-LS Encores and X-CS Encore (center channel) pictured in this thread in a 5.1 HT setup for the past six months and they don't disappoint.
Mike
I'm planning for a movie setup. Either Klipsch RF82+RC62 or 3 units of X-CS Encore as LCR. I want accurate & big sound for movies. I wonder if the X-CS (dual 6.5") can trounce the RF82 (dual 8").
I already have dual Rythmik FV15HP subwoofers. I'll be upgrading from Klipsch Synergy B3 bookshelf speakers.
 

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The MTM versions, X-Statik, and X-Voce are all 91db sensitivity and can hit those levels you're looking for pretty easily. So long as you're not clipping an amp they'll be fine and hit some pretty extreme levels with ease.
 

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This is what I'm worried about...reference level movie playback.


I'm planning for a movie setup. Either Klipsch RF82+RC62 or 3 units of X-CS Encore as LCR. I want accurate & big sound for movies. I wonder if the X-CS (dual 6.5") can trounce the RF82 (dual 8").
I already have dual Rythmik FV15HP subwoofers. I'll be upgrading from Klipsch Synergy B3 bookshelf speakers.
Up until last week I had Klipsch RB-81II's and an RC-62II in my living room HT system (the X-LS & X-CS Encores are in my personal system upstairs). The X-LS Encores trounced the Klipsch's. That said I would prefer to have either three of the X-CS Encores as an LCR setup or the MTM version. Sensitivity is higher than the X-LS Encores and the second woofer really makes a difference.

The MTM version Danny mentioned is just the X-CS Encore in a larger ported floor standing tower than the smaller sealed enclosure of the X-CS Encore. Check out the attached picture.

Mike
 

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The MTM versions, X-Statik, and X-Voce are all 91db sensitivity and can hit those levels you're looking for pretty easily. So long as you're not clipping an amp they'll be fine and hit some pretty extreme levels with ease.
Is that anechoic or in-room?

Up until last week I had Klipsch RB-81II's and an RC-62II in my living room HT system (the X-LS & X-CS Encores are in my personal system upstairs). The X-LS Encores trounced the Klipsch's. That said I would prefer to have either three of the X-CS Encores as an LCR setup or the MTM version. Sensitivity is higher than the X-LS Encores and the second woofer really makes a difference.

The MTM version Danny mentioned is just the X-CS Encore in a larger ported floor standing tower than the smaller sealed enclosure of the X-CS Encore. Check out the attached picture.

Mike
Thanks a lot for the feedback. Could you please describe more of your RC62 vs X-CS experience?
 

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Is that anechoic or in-room?


Thanks a lot for the feedback. Could you please describe more of your RC62 vs X-CS experience?
First, both sets of speakers will play loud, much louder than I care to listen to them. In stereo mode (80 wpc with a NAD T748) the X-LS Encores registered 97.7dB at 3 meters. This was getting close to maxing out my amp (not to mention hurting my ears) so I didn't push it any further to avoid clipping. Since the X-CS Encores are about 4dB more sensitive, they will play louder with the same amount of power. To me, the second woofer has the X-CS Encores sounding a little fuller and don't take as much power as the X-LS Encores. That is why, if there is room for the larger cabinets I would recommend three X-CS Encores as LCR.

Then again, if you have room for the X-CS Encores on stands as LR mains you have room for the MTM floor standing version which will give you better low end extension.

With only one X-CS Encore and one RC-62II, both being used as center channels, it is a little difficult to make a direct comparison between the two. I can compare the X-LS Encores and the RB81-II's directly since I could switch the AVR (a Marantz SR5007 in the living room system) to stereo mode.

It is important to note that I upgraded all the Encore crossovers to include Sonicaps and Mills resistors.

As I stated earlier in this post, both sets of speakers will play loud. Louder than I can stand them so I would consider them equal in this regard.

Now for the differences. I would characterize the Klipsch's as being on the bright side and the louder they are played the brighter they sound. I would describe the Encores as being smoother, more articulate, clearer, cleaner, and more transparent. By more transparent I mean if you listen to the two speakers side by side, the Klipsch's sound fine until you switch to the Encores. In comparison, the Klipsch's sound like they are playing through a veil. Not to the same degree as I have heard with some other speakers but it is there.

Also, the Encores do a better job when it comes to listening at low volume levels, which is something I do quite often at night after my wife has gone to bed.

Not sure if I am getting at what you are wanting to know or not. Hope this is helpful.

Mike
 

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First, both sets of speakers will play loud, much louder than I care to listen to them. In stereo mode (80 wpc with a NAD T748) the X-LS Encores registered 97.7dB at 3 meters. This was getting close to maxing out my amp (not to mention hurting my ears) so I didn't push it any further to avoid clipping. Since the X-CS Encores are about 4dB more sensitive, they will play louder with the same amount of power. To me, the second woofer has the X-CS Encores sounding a little fuller and don't take as much power as the X-LS Encores. That is why, if there is room for the larger cabinets I would recommend three X-CS Encores as LCR.

Then again, if you have room for the X-CS Encores on stands as LR mains you have room for the MTM floor standing version which will give you better low end extension.

With only one X-CS Encore and one RC-62II, both being used as center channels, it is a little difficult to make a direct comparison between the two. I can compare the X-LS Encores and the RB81-II's directly since I could switch the AVR (a Marantz SR5007 in the living room system) to stereo mode.

It is important to note that I upgraded all the Encore crossovers to include Sonicaps and Mills resistors.

As I stated earlier in this post, both sets of speakers will play loud. Louder than I can stand them so I would consider them equal in this regard.

Now for the differences. I would characterize the Klipsch's as being on the bright side and the louder they are played the brighter they sound. I would describe the Encores as being smoother, more articulate, clearer, cleaner, and more transparent. By more transparent I mean if you listen to the two speakers side by side, the Klipsch's sound fine until you switch to the Encores. In comparison, the Klipsch's sound like they are playing through a veil. Not to the same degree as I have heard with some other speakers but it is there.

Also, the Encores do a better job when it comes to listening at low volume levels, which is something I do quite often at night after my wife has gone to bed.

Not sure if I am getting at what you are wanting to know or not. Hope this is helpful.

Mike
Thanks. I really appreciate your comment. :clap:

Now...I wonder how the X-CS fare against Ascend Acoustics CMT-340 SE speakers. Product link here
:scratchhead:
 

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Thanks. I really appreciate your comment. :clap:

Now...I wonder how the X-CS fare against Ascend Acoustics CMT-340 SE speakers. Product link here
:scratchhead:
The CMT's have some nice woofers. Their tweeter is very much like that of the X-LS Classic. It's a nice inexpensive dome tweeter. But the tweeter used in the Encore series kits is one of the best dome tweeters available at any price: http://gr-research.com/gr-t3tweeter-1.aspx So there is quiet bit of an advantage there.



The weakness of the CMT is in the crossover.



The electrolytic caps and sand caste resistors will definitely hold back the performance.

By contrast the X-CS Encore uses all poly caps, air core inductors, high quality wire wound resistors, and even a Gen.2 Sonicap by-pass cap in the tweeter circuit. And all of this is on circuit board with thick Copper traces.

 
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