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Elite Shackster , HTS Moderator Emeritus
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Discussion Starter #1
To compliment my family/great room mini theater, I was thinking of building the B3S speaker Zaph designed. I have a handful of B3N's from a previous (failed) project and it's a nice small speaker (which keeps me from having to go in-ceiling for the LCR).

Anyone here tried this?

I'll post some pics of my progress, but it might be a little while as I'm also doing a major kitchen remodel at the same time.
http://www.zaphaudio.com/audio-speaker18.html
 

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I really want to build a zaph project and get a Kit from madisound. I have thought the reviews are outstanding for the price.

I want to build to bookshelf fronts and and a center channel. maybe those SR71's... but i should probably start out with something a bit cheaper. like the ZA5.3C
 

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I really want to build a zaph project and get a Kit from madisound. I have thought the reviews are outstanding for the price.

I want to build to bookshelf fronts and and a center channel. maybe those SR71's... but i should probably start out with something a bit cheaper. like the ZA5.3C
You've both picked a very rational approach to building speakers - use a proven design - and so can expect good results in terms of achieving a design's capability. The only question I'll raise is if this capability meets your requirements.

Anthony, as main HT LCRs, these aren't going to be very loud, perhaps no louder than the TV, and as Zaph stresses, you need a sub or bass will not sound good. For my tastes, these might be suitable for a bedroom perhaps, but not in a great room for HT. Then again, not everyone turns it up, just be aware of the limitations.

fschris, if you want SR71's, start with them, not the ZA5 series. Unless there's a secondary need - two HT set-up for example - you're better off spending the money once. That said, there's no point in spending money on quality levels beyond your appreciation. ZA5s are a high quality design using high-value drivers. SR71s use slightly better drivers, and a significant increase in price. You're well into diminishing returns, but if your ears can appreciate the quality difference, it's worth the price.

But only if there's an audible benefit. There rarely is when you're starting out....

Have fun,
Frank
 

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Elite Shackster , HTS Moderator Emeritus
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Discussion Starter #4
Oh yeah, I know they won't be loud. I'm planning on building an end table with an old NHT1259 driver I have laying around. That should fill in between about 35 and 120Hz nicely (and would be up front, so localization issues will be minimized with such a high crossover).

Eventually, this will just be an occasional theater, mostly sports and mindless TV. But until I get the real theater built, it will have to do.

But all engineering is trade-offs -- in this case, I have to trade volume and overall sound performance for a small package that can be wall or mantle mounted.

For the main HT, there will be no trade-offs (only money :D)
 

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Hey anthony
I did not build the b3s project from zaph's site, but after reading his build page I bought a handful of those drivers. I built a few projects with these drivers, and one of them was a single driver speaker that ended up having a similar size enclosure to zaph's, and a simple crossover to the sub at around 120hz.
You are right that they aren't very loud or efficient. However they gave me a significant increase in sound quality over my tv, and with a sub and receiver, they had also had a decent increase in volume. ( If I remember, they have 3 mm of xmax)
I was happy with mine , and im sure zaph's design is better, so I think you'll be happy with these until your dream theatur is built.
 

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I am very close to ordering some a Zaph Kit... I am trying ti decide if I should get the Cabinets or build my own. I have never built cabinets but I am eager to try. With that being said. If I bought the SR-71 I could afford the Kit... If I want to get the pre built cabinets I am at the ZA.5.2 level. As mentioned though. I am currently using some energy take speakers and I think anything will kill those!!
 

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Building a box is as simple as cutting wood square and to length. You have 2 choices
- get a table saw or learn to use a Skil saw and cutting guides
- find a lumber yard that will do the cutting for you

I have a woodworking lumber yard in town and they cut very nicely, but for a price. I would suggest making one, the CC, since it's frequently hidden, to see if you want to make more.

Building a speaker box requires a special side called a "baffle" that needs circular holes and recesses cut in it's face to mount the drivers. You would most likely make these cuts yourself on a commercial box as boxes are generic to accomodate a wide range of designs. This is why we all have routers and circle jigs. The beauty of a design-specific box is this is already cut for you.

Also, be aware that some Energy speakers don't sound all that bad to everyone... but there's a reason.
http://www.zaphaudio.com/C500.html

Have fun,
Frank
 

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Do you by any chance have four total drivers?

It might be possible to make a 1.5 way out of these, rather than a 1-way
 

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A 1.5 way! That sounds fun. I happen to have four of those, but no time right now. But for my third project with those drivers maybe I'll do some 1.5 way computer speakers or something
 

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I was thinking about using 4 of those B3s in series parallel. That would gain some power handling and sensitivity. You probably wouldn't get much more extension.

Second idea would be as above but crossed over to a decent 6-7" woofer for a deeper and cleaner low end. If I ever get caught up with current projects, I may try that.

Jim
 
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