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Speaker recommendation in view of brand's cost cutting

Holmz

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So .. you want to pay more just ... to pay more?!

I mean you got two choices:
Speaker with El-Cheapo parts -> Absurd markup -> Retail price.
Speaker with Deluxe parts -> Even absurder markup -> Retail price.

No matter how you slice it, the absurd markup will see to it, that you NEVER get "your money's worth" in terms of part quality. You will always pay way, way more than the speaker would actually be worth in terms of materials, R&D and labor.
Loudspeaker manufacturers are in it to make a killing and rob you blind, if you let them. Simple as that.

There is only one objective way around this: Taking complete control yourself.
Design and build speakers yourself.

Well the previous example I gave, is a case where one is literally getting most of the cost being components.
- https://www.madisoundspeakerstore.c...bnwg-4-beryllium-dome-tweeter-with-waveguide/ (494.70 x2)
- https://www.madisoundspeakerstore.c...a-01-6.5-ultra-low-distortion-midrange-4-ohm/ (435x2)
- https://www.madisoundspeakerstore.com/passive-radiators/purifi-audio-ptt6.5pr-6.5-passive-radiator/ (144 x4)

1000 + 870 + 600 = 2470

+ case, crossover, terminal connections..
Wood, machining. Assembly and R&D.

Do the math.
 

DMill

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there’s a reason you can’t find used BMRs. Wish I had $3k to buy the finish I like and just be done looking for speakers.
 

Chaconne

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Roy_L, This has been a pretty rocky thread for you, including a jab or two from me. So I just wanted to offer you a tip of the cap for sticking around with admirable equanimity, restraint and class. Well done. I hope you find what you're looking for.
-Bob
 

Urvile

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Well the previous example I gave, is a case where one is literally getting most of the cost being components.
- https://www.madisoundspeakerstore.c...bnwg-4-beryllium-dome-tweeter-with-waveguide/ (494.70 x2)
- https://www.madisoundspeakerstore.c...a-01-6.5-ultra-low-distortion-midrange-4-ohm/ (435x2)
- https://www.madisoundspeakerstore.com/passive-radiators/purifi-audio-ptt6.5pr-6.5-passive-radiator/ (144 x4)

1000 + 870 + 600 = 2470

+ case, crossover, terminal connections..
Wood, machining. Assembly and R&D.

Do the math.
Damn that would be fun to build, and one hell of a speaker. And I'd guess if I got the case and crossover right....
 

captainbeefheart

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Active speakers and electronics just have more that may go wrong.

FAR more to go wrong without a doubt.

Because the amplifier is going inside the cabinet it typically needs to be small and light weight. Class D amps switching amps along with switch mode power supplies are what you will find inside, often with all electronic parts glued for vibration control. There is a lot going on and unless very robustly made will have a finite lifespan due to repairs being very difficult and costly, often you can't even fix them it's replace the boards entirely and hope they have good customer support to get the boards. Another aspect is these types of amplifiers have been gaining a lot of advancements very quickly and the after a few years your active speakers are at best outdated if they still work.

This is why I go passive. In the near future I would like to remove the passive crossover networks run a calibrated mic with digital signal processing on the front end, separate amplifiers right behind the speakers as close as possible to power each driver. The processing should adjust each amplifier and their specific bandwidth accordingly to give a flat response at microphone, or that's the idea anyway. I just don't want amps inside my speakers, I like high quality linear amplifiers that can be serviced and run bulletproof. High quality 3 watt amp for the tweeter, high quality 12 watt amp for the mid-horn and a 100 watt for the woofer. That's 6 mono amps total. Okay nevermind I'm going with large ES panels driven directly off the plate of a transmitter tube, separate 350 watt sub woofers. Which seems less a nightmare or which is going to yield the best sounds? Ugh it never ends.
 
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Roy_L

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why settle for bookshelf's, get the BMR towers and be done! Regards
Sadly, international shipping for such big speakers makes it way too expansive. Also, in any case, it will be a total overkill in my living room.
 
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Roy_L

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An example to what the heck I mean:
Buchardt S400 (mk2):

Buchardt S400 Signature:

For 3,150 Euro instead of 2,000 Euro, you get higher end components in the same design- Higher end crossover, HDF cabinets, internal silver wiring, fancy binding posts and fancy terminal plates. Out of the whole bunch, probably only the HDF cabinets actually have audible consequences (I'd personally give up the silver wire...).

Given that example, I find it hard to believe that the original cheap-parts crossover is the only one matching the design goals, and that the improved crossover is actually WORSE, as can be understood from some commentors above. I do accept the possibility that is makes no audible difference, but I hardly believe it doesn't match the design goals.

That's what I mean- speakers containing parts which are of better quality than the minimum required to achieve their design goals. Pretty simple, actually. Is it worth that kind of additional cost? I dunnow, anyone should decide for himself. However, it's nice to have that option for a change.
 

lherrm

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FAR more to go wrong without a doubt.

Because the amplifier is going inside the cabinet it typically needs to be small and light weight. Class D amps switching amps along with switch mode power supplies are what you will find inside, often with all electronic parts glued for vibration control. There is a lot going on and unless very robustly made will have a finite lifespan due to repairs being very difficult and costly, often you can't even fix them it's replace the boards entirely and hope they have good customer support to get the boards. Another aspect is these types of amplifiers have been gaining a lot of advancements very quickly and the after a few years your active speakers are at best outdated if they still work.

This is why I go passive. In the near future I would like to remove the passive crossover networks run a calibrated mic with digital signal processing on the front end, separate amplifiers right behind the speakers as close as possible to power each driver. The processing should adjust each amplifier and their specific bandwidth accordingly to give a flat response at microphone, or that's the idea anyway. I just don't want amps inside my speakers, I like high quality linear amplifiers that can be serviced and run bulletproof. High quality 3 watt amp for the tweeter, high quality 12 watt amp for the mid-horn and a 100 watt for the woofer. That's 6 mono amps total. Okay nevermind I'm going with large ES panels driven directly off the plate of a transmitter tube, separate 350 watt sub woofers. Which seems less a nightmare or which is going to yield the best sounds? Ugh it never ends.
Active speakers amps can be outside the cabinet itself (Geithain, Genelec), thus easily serviceable.
Serious brands support their products for many years nay decades.
Current state of art class D amps limits (distortion for example) are orders of magnitude below drivers' limits, so not likely to be the weak link in the signal chain.

What you're intending to do is what active speakers/monitors like Genelec mains (1237 etc.) or Geithain (the K1 models) do.
 
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fineMen

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This right here is exactly why I generally avoid forums.
before:
Because he pays an arm and a leg, and expects the product to reflect that in every aspect. Like I've written above, some of us don't just buy a result. See my example regarding cars.
originally:
... are actually built from real high quality parts in all regards- cabinets, drivers, crossover, everything! I mean, it's not like I dare expecting anything like a floorstander or a complicated 4 way, right? Is it too much to ask for a pair of 3,000$ bookshelf speakers to be really built of actual high quality parts and measure great?
You cannot define "actual high quality parts" and "real high quality parts in all regards". You only emphasise the "quality" by "high" and "real", "actual" respectively, because You seem to not know how to qualify a "high quality part" against a not so high quality part.

As I told You, Your car example doesn't fit, because with the "parts" You are not asking for features that can or should be experienced in every day use. With the "parts" You are asking for features that are only visible after dismantling the speaker, rendering it not usable.

I gave You an example of speakers that even after 50 Years of use are still in spec, despite using electrolytic caps even in the tweeters circuit.

With all due respect, if You do not like caveat against irrational or in general twisted thought, then You should avoid a forum with "science" in its name in particular. May I put is most polite? Your original request is why I'm on this board specifically. It has to be rejected by someone.
 

fineMen

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... and for that price all you want it assurance the engineers aren't cutting corners, ...
You may not be an engineer. In case let me tell You that engineering is most about what You call "cutting corners".

Only once in a while one could come around with a solution that would open new doors. But still then all the optimising is for finding the most (e/g cost) efficient rendition of a well understood concept.
 
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Roy_L

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Yeh... that's what I mean. Forum bliss. And that's my last reaction to "Finemen" (that "ignore" button makes wonders).
 
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fineMen

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Buchardt S400 (mk2):
Buchardt S400 Signature:
... Is it worth that kind of additional cost? I dunnow, anyone should decide for himself. However, it's nice to have that option for a change.

Sarcasm:
The Buchardt describe themselves as "high end danish", but they only use "cross caps" in the woofer section, instead of the "superior caps" as with the tweeter which compromises the product, cutting corners galore! And why is it only "silver" wiring instead of "gold"? Man, they should just stop selling bread-and-butter business as high-end, but wait for the new high-temperature superconductors--I believe we have high pressurised sulphur on the plate already? Don't talk inductors, still copper for many many meters winded up so we would not see!
Self-reflect:
We happily ignore 500Hz passive/drone speaker resonance, but caps, binding post and internal wiring, too cheap.
Full stop.
Yeh... that's what I mean. Forum bliss. And that's my last reaction to "Finemen" (that "ignore" button makes wonders).
 

Aerith Gainsborough

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You may not be an engineer. In case let me tell You that engineering is most about what You call "cutting corners".
It depends.

Take Focal as an example: they designed their Utopia headphone as a "no holds barred, screw the cost" project. The engineers could go ham in terms of materials etc.

Then they designed their Elegia and Clear headphones with a very specific price point in mind.

I'm sure they had a similar design philosophy in their Utopia line of speakers, using exotic electro magnets etc, whereas my Arias are very clearly designed to a price point again.

In general, you are right of course: our job is to find the most effective solution that does the job we intend it to do with the accepted margin of error and failure rate. Anything beyond that is a waste of resources. Be it materials, space, processing power ... you name it.

As @Roy_L already stated: most of what Burchardt did is probably not audible and does not improve the speakers he linked in any objective way. They merely use the premium materials as a marketing tool for people that care about what's inside and improve them subjectively.
Is that a valid approach? I guess, like beauty and design aesthetic, that is ultimately in the eye of the beholder.
 

fineMen

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... a marketing tool for people that care about what's inside and improve them subjectively.
Is that a valid approach? I guess, like beauty and design aesthetic, that is ultimately in the eye of the beholder.

The freedom of choice, even if nonsensical. Taste cannot be disputed. But, we are talking about a tool named "speaker" made for a purpose for one. The purpose is to deliver the aesthetics of something else, namely music by itself and the art of recording it.
For the other, these guys claim a connection between the materials and that purpose, as opposed to say, the (internal) silver wiring is just for the looks? Most times it is plain fraud to do so.

I think, things become pretty ugly with this. People are made to believe that a certain look of the (dismantled!!) speaker would tell the fitness for the original purpose. The looks--never seen when in use, but only revealed by specialised XX-magazines, becomes an undefined standard that male customers tend to rave about. So, these fellows celebrate an aesthetic lie as a prerequisite for a product originally made to deliver aesthetic truth (see above).

Rancid, from an aesthetic point of view. May they get what they desire.
 

Aerith Gainsborough

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The looks--never seen when in use
We clearly need transparent speakers, so "highend" crossovers can be admired while the music is playing.

... With proper gamer RGB-LED illumination, of course. :p
 

airgas1998

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You might want to consider cutting back on your consumption of Danny Richie videos! :)
bingo...as soon as i saw "mfg using cheap xo components" i immediately said, "oh no the o.p was just sucked into the Danny vortex hole". hey o.p I'm sure my revel m16 xo parts are made out of playdoh per Danny's specs, but they sound pretty damn good to me. also the Polk r200's are great as well...you are definitely chasing that rabbit...
 

captainbeefheart

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You may not be an engineer. In case let me tell You that engineering is most about what You call "cutting corners".

When working for large corporations where your fighting cost curves so shareholders can increase profits every quarter, yes cutting corners is common. Most of this is cheap consumer electronics. Some companies are actually worse than that, they actually place things like electrolytic capacitors directly next to heatsinks so the product just makes it past the warranty window. That's all they care about. BUT not all engineers/companies work like this and some of us actually do the opposite. We still have a budget and not an attitude of cost is no object so we look for elegant solutions that both work well for the long haul and are within budget, it can be done.
 

captainbeefheart

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Active speakers amps can be outside the cabinet itself (Geithain, Genelec), thus easily serviceable.
Serious brands support their products for many years nay decades.
Current state of art class D amps limits (distortion for example) are orders of magnitude below drivers' limits, so not likely to be the weak link in the signal chain.

What you're intending to do is what active speakers/monitors like Genelec mains (1237 etc.) or Geithain (the K1 models) do.

Even outside of the cabinet a lot of these Class D amps are not as serviceable as their linear counterparts. One of the chipsets fails you replace the whole board that's it. Yes there are some parts that are common failure points that can be fixed, typically switching Mosfets, the large capacitors after the transformer/diode seeing large high frequency current pulses constantly. Your average local tech don't typically take switching amps for work because it's typically a headache and the cost of repairs can be more than the equipment so it's throwaway gear.

I'm not wildly familiar with the companies you mentioned but I assume they are Class D? The difference is I will use linear amps.

I completely agree that not only Class D amps but even tube amplifiers have magnitude lower distortion than speakers which is why I laugh when people care about the difference in distortion of -100db and -110db, both are so far below speaker distortion it's a non issue. My woofer tube amp would be .05% THD at 20Hz and 50 watts, push 50 watts through a common woofer driver and tell me if it's anywhere near .05% THD, it's going to be more like 10% THD. People worry far too much about harmonic distortion, especially if it's second harmonic it's relatively benign and you can easily get away with much higher levels than what most people think. I won't lose sleep over even 1% of second harmonic at higher power levels because the speaker is going to be grossly higher and it's just not as important as people think. Yes I do draw a line, I don't think a 300b amp putting out 5% THD at 5 watts is good, a little feedback and you can get it down to less than 1% which will be fine but many of those builders are scared of feedback although feedback is the reason triodes are so linear.
 

captainbeefheart

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Back to the engineers cutting corners, you do realize us older engineers didn't have to deal with this when we were in this field 40-50 years ago. The economy and throwaway mindset is a cancer to society and is common place in today's economy. There was a time when we did build a product that would last 50 years and easily serviceable.

This cost cutting bottom line mindset just keeps on getting worse but it wasn't always like this. There were always some products that yes could be better, take the Dynaco ST70, it was cheap and got good performance and power for cheap money, it allowed many Americans that couldn't afford a McIntosh still get a decent stereo. But even those cheap amplifiers are still running today, ya there was better amplifiers out there and better designs but for affordability it was a breakthrough. In today's world the cheap box store amp will crap out in a couple years and go into a landfill. Different times.

Even the cheapest of cheap, the All American 5 radios are still running today.
 
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