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Any helpful resources for DIY speaker projects?

Diplo

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I want to make my own single woofer, Auratone style speaker to avoid crossover issues, and toy around with adding a passive radiator.

This would just be a single mono speaker that I would use for mixing. My hope is to create a speaker that has a quick transient response, low distortion and is linear throughout its limited frequency range - a big ask for someone who is an absolutely DIY beginner!

As I am a beginner when it comes to passive speaker circuitry and construction, I wondered if someone could suggest some helpful resources!

I want to learn more about woofer material and passive radiator sizing.
I have questions, such as: do aluminium woofers help with transient response?
Is it more beneficial to use 2 radiators instead of one? How does a passive radiator affect frequency response? Etc…

I’ve checked out YouTube, but there isn’t a huge amount of education regarding the topic.

Thanks for the help!
 
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Diplo

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Is there a reason you don't want a tweeter?
I just updated my post with more info!

I wanted to avoid crossover issues, and use it mainly as a midrange focused, mono-mixing reference speaker.

But a speaker that has good transients response and is linear within its limited range!
 

Doodski

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I just updated my post with more info!

I wanted to avoid crossover issues, and use it mainly as a midrange focused, mono-mixing reference speaker.

But a speaker that has good transients response and is linear within its limited range!
It's going to sound bass'y with little to no top end with 1 or 2 passive radiators and a 1 way. Just saying. :D
 
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Diplo

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It's going to sound bass'y with little to no top end with 1 or 2 passive radiators and a 1 way. Just saying. :D
Do you have any woofer suggestions?
I’m looking for a response around 80hz-16khz.
The passive radiator was more for lower end linearity rather than additional bass…
 

Doodski

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Do you have any woofer suggestions?
I’m looking for a response around 80hz-16khz.
The passive radiator was more for lower end linearity rather than additional bass…

How terrible would a coaxial car woofer with a passive radiator sound
I'm going to bow out. There are far more qualified speaker gurus here that can assist with driver recommendations. Peeps that do this speaker design often and have years+ of experience in selecting drivers. :D
 
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Zaph's entire website is worth reading, but this is one of his published designs using a single 3":

http://zaphaudio.com/audio-speaker18.html

He goes through his process in great detail.

IMO, transient response is kind of an audiophile buzzword... the relevant audible issue people are trying to get at is almost always room modes, which is a property of room acoustics and not speaker or driver performance. I think the misunderstanding is so bad now that many people are misinterpreting a lack of bass extension as good transient response.

You have some great options nowadays for the full-range driver e.g. Peerless TC9, Scanspeak 10f, Tectonic BMR.
 

Mudjock

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I would consider the Dayton ND90-8 (or Aurasound NS3-193-8A, which is a drop-in replacement) with a single ND105-PR passive radiator an an enclosure with approximately 3 liters of internal volume. The ND90 is a 3" aluminum cone woofer that has decent excursion capability and also works pretty well at high frequencies. There aren't too many woofers larger than 3" that can play at high frequencies without extreme beaming.
 
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Diplo

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I would consider the Dayton ND90-8 (or Aurasound NS3-193-8A, which is a drop-in replacement) with a single ND105-PR passive radiator an an enclosure with approximately 3 liters of internal volume. The ND90 is a 3" aluminum cone woofer that has decent excursion capability and also works pretty well at high frequencies. There aren't too many woofers larger than 3" that can play at high frequencies without extreme beaming.
Thanks!

What’s also great is that those parts I can buy on Amazon here in the U.K.

What’s the benefit of having the passive radiator slightly larger than the actual woofer?
Their description says that a passive radiator should have double the air displacement than the woofer, is this the reason?

Also, what’s your take on the Dayton PS line?
 
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ppataki

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I would also recommend Dayton Audio, especially the Reference series
Also take a look at Markaudio drivers (CHN110 for example)

I would personally ditch the PR, it will destroy your temporal curves (impulse response, step response, phase, group delay)
Just use a closed cabinet with additional DSP if needed
 

mdsimon2

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Not exactly what you are looking for but you might consider an established Fullrange Assisted Subwoofer Technology (FAST) design. I can vouch for the sealed version of this design -> https://www.diyaudio.com/community/threads/10f-8424-rs225-8-fast-waw-ref-monitor.273524/. It uses the previously mentioned Scanspeak 10F which is an excellent full ranger and has a first order x-over to maintain something close to "perfect transient response" although I think the concept of transient response is overrated.

I truly think that as a newbie you are better off following an established design and I think a single full ranger will be very unsatisfying without subwoofer assistance.

Michael
 
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Diplo

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Thanks!

I was actually checking out both the RS and ND line from Dayton

Also, why would the PR cause such issues?
Would an unported cabinet cause too much internal pressure?
 

mdsimon2

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A passive radiator (like a ported box) will have a steeper rolloff than a sealed enclosure and steeper rolloff = worse transient response.

A properly designed sealed enclosure will have no issue with too much internal pressure. In the design I linked although the 10F is in the same enclosure as the RS225 the 10F is in it's own isolated dagger to prevent interaction between the RS225 and the 10F.

Michael
 

ppataki

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Thanks!

I was actually checking out both the RS and ND line from Dayton

Also, why would the PR cause such issues?
Would an unported cabinet cause too much internal pressure?
@mdsimon2 provided a great answer already, I would just add that if you choose to build a sealed enclosure you would need to pay attention to air leakage
I personally tend to paint the inside of the cabinet too with a thick coating + make sure that all your cutouts (speaker, terminal) are sealed too (use a gasket, etc.)
And of course make sure that your screws are shorter than the thickness of your cabinet's walls
 

alex-z

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I want to make my own single woofer, Auratone style speaker to avoid crossover issues, and toy around with adding a passive radiator.

My hope is to create a speaker that has a quick transient response, low distortion and is linear throughout its limited frequency range - a big ask for someone who is an absolutely DIY beginner!

As I am a beginner when it comes to passive speaker circuitry and construction, I wondered if someone could suggest some helpful resources!

I want to learn more about woofer material and passive radiator sizing.
I have questions, such as: do aluminium woofers help with transient response?
Is it more beneficial to use 2 radiators instead of one? How does a passive radiator affect frequency response? Etc…

I’ve checked out YouTube, but there isn’t a huge amount of education regarding the topic.

Thanks for the help!

If you can't manage crossover design, then just build an existing kit. "Full-range" drivers have little bass extension, and the radiation pattern narrows too early. They also still need a crossover to manage breakup modes, it is just less complex than a normal speaker crossover.

Transient response is more a psychoacoustic function than a physical one. If you build a speaker with a linear response and no major resonances, it will sound "fast".

Low distortion and linearity are not going to happen with a full-range driver. If you make the driver big enough to have good power handling, the high frequencies drop out. If you make the driver small enough to maintain a good radiation pattern, the bottom octaves will drop out.

Woofer material is largely irrelevant. There are differences in stiffness and damping, but that is an idealistic view. It is easy to add stiffening or damping to any material, as long as you accept the additional mass, and inherent loss of efficiency.

Passive radiators operate via the same function as ports, they are resonators. The mass of the passive radiator is adjusted to hit a target frequency, just like the mass of air inside a port would be. The passive radiator needs enough surface area and suspension travel to match the displacement that would occur in an equally tuned port. Therefore, it is typically recommended your passive radiator have twice the area of your woofer. Passive radiators inherently leak fewer internal cabinet resonances, making them easier to work with, but more expensive. Ports can be optimized to perform well, but requires careful consideration of the cabinet and port design.

Edit: One book I think worth reading is "High Performance Loudspeakers" by Martin Colloms.
 
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Diplo

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Thanks!

I wondered, do curved baffles like that of the KEF LS50 have much effect? What would happen if that curve was accentuated?

Excuse the poorly drawn image, but I was considering building a cabinet where the single driver protrudes out. My thinking is that it might help minimise diffraction and desk reflection if angled slightly.

It would be a cuboid shaped protrusion as I would be building using ply.
 

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DVDdoug

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I me it seems silly to build an "improved" Auratone. If you want Auratones you can buy them or you can probably find plans and a driver to build something similar.

The Auratone became popular as a "downgraded standard" so engineers could hear what the average listener would hear on their small radio or stereo... To make sure it will sound OK to the listener as well as in the studio and on a good hi-fi system. Yamaha NS-10's were used for similar purposes but they aren't as "bad" as Auratones.
 

alex-z

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Thanks!

I wondered, do curved baffles like that of the KEF R3 have much effect? What would happen if that curve was accentuated?

Excuse the poorly drawn image, but I was considering building a cabinet where the single driver protrudes out. My thinking is that it might help minimise diffraction and desk reflection if angled slightly.

It would be a cuboid shaped protrusion as I would be building using ply.

I assume you mean the KEF LS50, the R3 does not have a curved baffle.

A smooth baffle transition reduces the diffraction ripple in the frequency response, so it is a good choice.

When a tweeter is placed inside a waveguide, that also reduces diffraction ripple, because less energy from the tweeter is reaching the baffle edges. Hence why the KEF R3 does not use rounded edges.

If you are not using a waveguide, the best approach is to offset the tweeter so that the centre to edge distance is different in all directions. You can see this approach used on some models like the TriTrix MT.


Another approach is to use such a large baffle that the ripple is pushed down in frequency + amplitude. Here is an example of that:

 
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Diplo

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I me it seems silly to build an "improved" Auratone. If you want Auratones you can buy them or you can probably find plans and a driver to build something similar.

The Auratone became popular as a "downgraded standard" so engineers could hear what the average listener would hear on their small radio or stereo... To make sure it will sound OK to the listener as well as in the studio and on a good hi-fi system. Yamaha NS-10's were used for similar purposes but they aren't as "bad" as Auratones.
I wanted to make something that resembled Auratone in regards to a reference single driver, that wouldn’t suffer from crossover issues, but not sound as crappy.
I don’t plan on making a stereo pair, just a single central mono monitor.
 
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