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Install Advice

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  • Install Advice

    Hey guys,

    I have been involved with home and car audio for years, but was recently asked by a friend to design and install a sound system in his commercial building and need some help with the design.

    The main room where the audio system will be installed is shown in the attacked picture. It's roughly a 75' by 45' rectangle (disregarding the loft area) and has a 20' drop ceiling. It is an indoor climbing and fitness center and will be playing 10 hours a day at moderate levels, but will also need to play at high levels for special events and parties that will be hosted frequently. The building is about 2 blocks away from a college campus and will be playing all types of music, but specifically a lot of bass heavy hip-hop/dance/techno. The budget is fairly tight at roughly $5000. but I think it should be enough to do what they need.

    So far I was thinking of using the following:

    Amp for mains: (2) Crown XLI 3500's
    Main Speakers: (4) DIY Sound Group Titan-615's shown in the attached picture
    Subwoofer Amp: (2) Benhringer Inuke 6000DSP
    Subs: (4) Eminence Definimax 4018LF, put in two separate cabinets wired in parallel for a 4 Ohm load each

    Note: I am an experienced carpenter and have built quite a few speakers for home theater and car audio, so construction is not a problem. Also, they will most likely use this set-up for a long time/until it dies, so resale value is not a big concern.

    My questions are:

    1) Will this speaker/subwoofer selection and quantity work well for my needs and the space? If not, what would you suggest?

    2) Where would you locate the speakers and subwoofers in the room for the most even response?

    3) What tuning frequency should be used for the subwoofer box given the music being played?
    -I modeled Eminence's recommended cab (40HZ) and it's response had a big hump on the lower frequencies. When I lowered
    the tuning to 32HZ however it flattened out the curve and gave me some added extension at the cost of some output. With 4
    drivers though I don't think output will be a huge issue.

    4) Is placing ports directly behind the woofer bad practice and will it change the tuning frequency? One cabinet design I was considering had the ports directly behind the woofers, but there was >1 Diameter's distance away from the woofer's magnet. Will this be an issue?

    Any help or suggestions are really appreciated. PM's are also welcome.


  • #2
    1. My suggestion is going to be to ditch the subs altogether as I don't see the need for them given the main speaker choice and the fact that this isn't a night club environment. Getting good(even) coverage at sub frequencies is not a trivial thing to accomplish indoors.

    2. For most even coverage you want to consider a hung center cluster, that adds complexity and liability to this install but it will deliver the est results.

    3. If subs are used the 40hz tuning is fine.

    4. Ports should be on the face of the sub box not on the rear panel and all drivers should also be on the same baffle.. unless you are deliberately trying to build a cardiod design. That brings up another question, does this venue have neighbors that may object to even moderate low frequency "noise" bleeding into their environment?
    Paul O


    • #3
      Trying to decide if subwoofers should be added or not is an issue is that I have wrestled with for a while, but ultimately I think they are needed. I spoke with the owners about it and in order to help their business stand out in a "college town" atmosphere, external subwoofers will be advantageous.

      Flying the cabinets overhead should not be a problem since there are a number of steel I beams running directly above the center of the room. The only questions I would have are how to position them altitude wise in reference to the drop ceiling and how much output would be lost from the cabs not being on the ground.

      It is a stand alone building with a fair amount of room around it, so they won't have any issue with sound leakage.

      Another big concern of mine is getting even high frequency coverage with only 4 speaker cabs and where to place them in the room. What would be the best way to accomplish that?

      Thanks for the reply.


      • #4
        In my opinion the Titans are designed for home theaters.
        The Fusion 12 inchers, and subwoofers would better suit your needs.
        Have you looked at Bill Fitzmaurice's Tuba 60 subwoofer.

        Have you thought about going with an active crossover like the
        DBX Driverack, and building your own mid/tops.
        Funk is it's own reward.


        • #5
          Originally posted by b4dafunk View Post
          Have you looked at Bill Fitzmaurice's Tuba 60 subwoofer.
          It's probably way more than he needs, unless the space is going to double as a full blown dance club by night. T39 or T45 would be appropriate. I agree that using subs with DIY Sound Group Titan-615's isn't a good idea. The 615 is designed for when you don't use subs. If you do use subs you want mains designed to work only with subs.



          • #6
            Here's my take on it.  Amazing things happen when woofers are coupled, often negating the need for subs and the difficulties in aligning them with the rest of the system.  I'd skip the subs and add additional boxes/woofers that match the Titans and cluster them with the Titans.  I'm basing this on my own path of high efficiency drivers for home use, in the last couple of years.  For example, a single JBL 2226, by itself, is a bit of a weak sauce on the lo-low end.  Place 2 of them together, and it's a whole new animal.  I understand I'm comparing a small, home environment to a large, commercial space, but it's still relevant.  The only difference would be additional drivers and amplifier power would be necessary to fill the larger space.  I listen to mostly electronic music, lots of house of various sub-genres from the tech side to garage, some R&B, hip-hop, acid jazz, dubstep...  Currently, my 2226s are in cabinets that are too small, nearly half the size of what they should be to maximize the low end, yet I hardly ever find anything missing, and very rarely use the subs to accompany them.  That's with 4 drivers, 2 per side, side by side, in a .5 configuration where the second woofer on either side is lowpassed lower than the other which crosses over to the mid.  Adding the same woofers as what the Titans use(if available separately), and building the same sized enclosures for them to eliminate group delay differences and clustering them all together with the full Titans would be the direction i'd look into.  Your DSP needs for this would be minimal.  Amps with built in DSP would suffice, or something as simple(cheap) as a single, balanced, MiniDSP would do all that you'd need leaving more room for budget and selection of amplifiers.