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  • tvrgeek
    replied
    Yes, using the free version of WinIsd. As I prefer low Q sealed boxes, no need for the alternative alignments. I know of them, have used them, C4 usually, but do not care for them. If you want those alignments, then pay the price. With the current auto-eq from AVRs, ( ARS the best) handling the ripple to get a much smaller box I guess is a good thing.

    Had a warbler but somehow lost it. Better than pure tones, but way shy of what MLS does for us. I still have an old "pulser" though I find just guessing offset based on the top of the VC to be very close.

    Big surprise today. Got a pair of Dayton RS150-4 drivers for my center. ( mains are RS150-8) I have used about 6 pairs of RS drivers in the past and measured parameters were well within expected and had little effect on box alignment. Not so these. So far off, calculated box volume is DOUBLE. Le is less than half. fs about 20% high, Qes, Qms over 20% and that is after a day of break in. Not happy. I;ll be contacting them. Weak magnet? Chinese job shop changed the materials? Won't work for my space. I hope I don't have to change to the new SB ceramic drivers. Better than I need for this project. Bad luck, got my tweeter from Madisound and it was badly packages. Flange was busted. Destroyed. Verified my measurements by re-measuring one of my old RS125's. Same as last time and close to published specs.

    VIsta? Come on, Win 10 is not THAT bad. Sure, we liked XP better, but such is life. Actually,my favorite was IRIX. I save my hate not for MS, but for AIX.

    Leave a comment:


  • scholl
    replied
    The good old "Old Colony" warbler tone generator and Rat Shack SPL meter did a great job for me.

    It's still hard to beat those 1980s Dynaudio drivers.

    Leave a comment:


  • Chris Roemer
    replied
    tvr - it SEEMs like you're using the (liimited) "beta" (or "non-pro") vers. of WinISD. Until recently there was THAT (very easy to sim a box using only Qts, Fs, and Vas - but limited graph plotting) and the "alpha" or "Pro" vers. (which I still like - mine's "WinISD 0.50a7") which DOES let you choose at least 5 vented box alignments: QB3, BB4/SBB4, C4/SC4, EBS3, and EBS6.

    It also does Closed, Passive Radiator, and 4th & 6th order bandpass. A REALLY COOL thing about doing a vented box is that you can click in the box icon and basically draw (drag) about any rolloff curve/shape you want. It does round and slot vents. You can simulate different types/densities of box fill (Cb), and sim additional (electrical) pass filters/boosts.

    It plots (in addition to xfer fn (rolloff), Group Delay, Max Power/SPL, SPL, excursion, impedance, PR excursion, port gains/velocities, and filter/equalizer curves. It displays 10 curves simultaneously. The ONLY catch (until you practice) is entering T/S parms (too many will throw an err). I just enter: Qes, Qms (it will autocalculate Qts), Fs, Vas, Re, Le, Pe, Sd(in sq.cm. is best), and Xmax; and it calcs sensitivity in both dB/w/m and dB/2.83v/m. (The other "catch" (for ME - running it under Vista yet on an old DT) is that I use "Task Manager" to close it - else another err.)

    There are also several other(/newer) vers. out. Bill really likes it (and knows all its ins-and-outs), but (for some reason) it really bugs craig when I talk about it. (sc)

    Leave a comment:


  • tomzarbo
    replied
    Originally posted by a4eaudio View Post

    Hi Tom. I have been thinking about posting this question...while we have some really great free software available to us as DIYers are some of the commercial products worth it if we are willing to spend the money? In particular I use WinISD and it seems to do everything I need it to, but of course I have never used Bass Box Pro so don't know what I am missing. If I don't mind spending the money, does it offer options that WinISD doesn't and/or is the user interface a lot better, or are we really getting pretty much the same thing in WinISD?
    BassBox Pro is all about the interface. In my opinion, it's the way a speaker box design interface should be. It's graphical, intuitive, and easily changeable on the fly. It has all the tools you want to do quick sims and even see a representation of the box in real-time. I've had mine get glitchy though, so I don't trust it completely without a double check on WinISD. For instance you can't go from ported to PR boxes in WinISD, where in BassBox, you just click "PR" and enter the params. Lots of other things too, but basically, the bass box manual is a teaching tool for the why's of designing a speaker box as much as how to do it. Not perfect, but real user friendly and basically accurate.

    Xover Pro is another story. I can't see using it to seriously sim a crossover anymore after having used Xsim and mostly PCD. Xover Pro does have a great interface as it is made by the same people (Harris Tech) that make BassBox Pro. They have the interface down to what a crossover program should be. Again, very intuitive... the manual is pretty good too. For a first time crossover designer I learned from it and even though there is a lot it doesn't take into account, it did give me decent results on several designs. I suspect you could start with it to get you somewhat close, then go from there by ear and measurement.

    Put it this way... if Parts Express were to come out with a BassBox Pro and Xover Pro type of suite that actually worked with the accuracy of WinISD and PCD, but with the excellent intuitive interface of BassBox and Xover Pro, I'd be a buyer for sure. WinISD usually works fine for me, but PCD is a hassle lots of the time, and there will be a day in the not too distant future when many of us have trouble getting it to work due to Windows upgrade issues and Excel problems. Some guys will always find a work-around, but everyone isn't so technically advanced and will just drop off, I'll probably be one of them unfortunately. Since Jeff has passed and tech support for PCD is no more, it's just a matter of time.






    Originally posted by rpb View Post

    It's hard to convince some people, but you don't need to know what the z off-set is, as long as you are willing to make the effort to blend the drivers properly, and have some parts on hand to do so. In other words, trial and error doesn't use a z offset. If you just want to rely on a sim, then you need it. If you are positive you made no mistakes determining it, then there's no need to measure after you assemble the x-over. (But everyone does.) If you take a wag at the offset, you can measure afterwards, and make everything nice and flat.
    You're right. But if you're trying to sim a design front to back, its needed, like you said. Plus it's one of those foundational things that you want to get right, at least in the beginning. Also knowing that your curve lines up accurately means you're on the right track overall.

    But if you can't get the Z-offset right in sim-land, then you can't just do sims for fun with no serious intention of building and be assured the measured squigglies will look like the simmed squigglies without that proper Z-offset.

    TomZ

    Leave a comment:


  • rpb
    replied
    Amanda McBroom. "Dreaming" is one of my go to discs for sub-woofer adjustment, and overall voicing.

    Leave a comment:


  • tvrgeek
    replied
    Oh yea, WooferTester II ( Smith and Larson) was like $100 in the day. I think more like $150 now. PE sells a clone. So much worth it rather than trying to use Leap.

    Leave a comment:


  • tvrgeek
    replied
    Originally posted by LIDAR View Post
    Ah, Harry James! I have a direct to disc of his that was recorded in a church using just 3 mics (a stereo pair plus one over the drum kit that was placed in a plexiglass booth slightly off to the side of the big band). It is my reference recording. In case of a house fire, that is the one record that I'll grab on the way out...
    I have both his Mobile Fidelity! And Amanda McBroom.

    Freeware vs licensed. Only one accurate unbiased answer and that is the consultants report: "It depends"

    WinIsl gives you one "optimum" alignment for ported. Not even sure what one it is. You can't select B3, Qb4, C4 etc. For sealed, you can just change vol and see the Q change. PSD-Lite does not handle MTM alignments well unless you go measure the combined in-box to input. But, I only use these tools to get enough information if the selection of parts will be compatible. I then prototype and make readings from there. MDF is cheap. I suspect the more expensive better known applications are more accurate, but think hard about what you need to do and what you don't really. Do I care about tweeter response in large baffle? No. Do I care about driver near-field response? Only for headphones. It takes a while to understand, the room is half of the speaker. That is the advantage a hobbyist has, they can design for their room, not try to guess for everyone. The second lesson that takes a while is understanding that great flat bass response sounds like crap in a real room. Those sweet simulation plots are just too seductive.

    I had SoundEasy. Like any good advertising, take your worst attribute and advertise it. EASY it was not. Just not worth the learning curve for a hobbyist, though as far as I know, it did everything and did it with good accuracy. A friend keeps buying "optimum" crossover designs done by a vendor of simulation software. Now a one of them I would put up with past the starting point I can get to with my free stuff. I prefer a tool I can use and understand it's shortcomings rather than one I am not sure I used correctly. Maybe a copy of Bullock on Boxes would give you the hints on how to do alternate alignments in simulations. ( You should read anyway, along with Joe Apolitto)

    Forgot to mention, I do all my analog active design and simulation in LTSpice. So if you want to stick in a filter here and there, easy to verify what you are doing. You can simulate a crossover, but trying to do an accurate model of the drivers is hard and it will only be in the electrical domain.

    Leave a comment:


  • rpb
    replied
    Originally posted by tomzarbo View Post
    Thanks for the history lesson regarding speaker design, it was an interesting peek back in time.

    Despite the progress made up to the 1990's or so, I seemed to still be quite lost during that time. Bass box pro and Xover pro programs really taught me quite a bit on how this stuff all works, but it wasn't until John Hollander took the time to help me with PCD that it started to click for me.. at that point sims and measurements began to overlap. My wife thought I was nuts when I ran through the house screaming " I found the Z offset! I finally have it!"

    Just imagine where we'd be without Jeff Bagbys PCS and his other programs.

    TomZ
    It's hard to convince some people, but you don't need to know what the z off-set is, as long as you are willing to make the effort to blend the drivers properly, and have some parts on hand to do so. In other words, trial and error doesn't use a z offset. If you just want to rely on a sim, then you need it. If you are positive you made no mistakes determining it, then there's no need to measure after you assemble the x-over. (But everyone does.) If you take a wag at the offset, you can measure afterwards, and make everything nice and flat.

    Leave a comment:


  • rpb
    replied
    Originally posted by tvrgeek View Post
    My first DSP was a Berhinger. Hated it; Took forever to boot and was way too noisey. Newer ( cheaper) stuff is far better. I bought it thinking it would help prototyping, but the difference in phase made the results useless even for traditional active crossovers.

    Maybe an irony. Full range need significant processing, but that defeats the entire "purity" argument their fans love. You know 12W tubes, passive RIAA, and 8 inch Fostex club.

    I still find a well done passive crossover to work fine in the mains. But sub instigation is best done active. I am about to buy a DSP for my living room sub as I only run one now and the room is not as easy as my last house. Living rooms do have to be lived in. My HT room/guest room I have a Anthem AVR. Their ARC is far better than Audessy and it actually convinced me DSP is valid. Still, best to get close and let the DSP fine tune than expect it to do everything. The better the drivers, the better the results. Not ready to put DSP into my living room mains. Still old school. Nak preamp, My own Mosfet amp and of course my own speakers. Maybe eventually. Need to get my Triumph Stag back on the road, build some furniture, build a new shed... Seems I never have time for anything after I retired.

    DSP has really been a boon to pro sound reinforcement. Huge, really huge. With a set of column speakers, ( 12 drivers minimum) a sub and some DSP, you can actually get decent sound all the way back in bad club rooms. Convincing bands to give up their big PeeVee 18 inch/EV horn PA is the hard part.
    I think I'm more old school even than you! I like passive x-overs done by trial and error, but I like a 24dB active low-pass on my sub at about 65hz. Small sealed mains use the high-pass built into the HT receiver. I measure the speakers, but not the in room. If it doesn't suit me, I change it. No room correction for me, although EQ on the sub gets used sometimes.

    Leave a comment:


  • a4eaudio
    replied
    Originally posted by tomzarbo View Post
    Thanks for the history lesson regarding speaker design, it was an interesting peek back in time.

    Despite the progress made up to the 1990's or so, I seemed to still be quite lost during that time. Bass box pro and Xover pro programs really taught me quite a bit on how this stuff all works,
    Hi Tom. I have been thinking about posting this question...while we have some really great free software available to us as DIYers are some of the commercial products worth it if we are willing to spend the money? In particular I use WinISD and it seems to do everything I need it to, but of course I have never used Bass Box Pro so don't know what I am missing. If I don't mind spending the money, does it offer options that WinISD doesn't and/or is the user interface a lot better, or are we really getting pretty much the same thing in WinISD?

    Leave a comment:


  • LIDAR
    replied
    Ah, Harry James! I have a direct to disc of his that was recorded in a church using just 3 mics (a stereo pair plus one over the drum kit that was placed in a plexiglass booth slightly off to the side of the big band). It is my reference recording. In case of a house fire, that is the one record that I'll grab on the way out...

    Leave a comment:


  • tvrgeek
    replied
    After spending big bucks on Sound Easy, I use mostly freeware or cheap stuff. Gets you close to start listening and of course helps in original driver selection. But it won't give you hints like X25's should never be used below 3K, HDS below 3500. Can't always trust the graphs or the 3X Fs rule.

    Yes, truly indebted to several folks who put in huge time and effort and shared their work with all of us.

    I love history. Not the military-political timeline rote regurgitation we had in school, but more interesting threads. Bronoski and Burke opened my eyes. What happened, then what happened because of that. Who mentioned something to someone who saw something else. Reading the history explains a few other things. It is common for someone to make a discovery and then optimize totally for their discovery. Klipsh showed how distortion and efficiency were inversely proportional, so he built super efficient speakers. Crap plastic horns but they were efficient. Bose got tied up in his reflections, forgetting the need for a tweeter. And so on. That leaves us jack-of-all-trades to piece it together without the bias of discovery.

    PS, notice in my other thread, not going to bother with DSP in my living room. Got there without it.

    PPS: My suite
    My combined spreadsheets ( Some stuff from Linkwitz, conversions etc) , Holm, Arta, Woofer Tester II Edge, WinIsd, XDir, Bagby, PSD-Lite, True RTA, Zelscope, FPGraph, Excel.
    I use a Berhinger calibrated mic and a Focusrite Ruby preamp. I set a 1K acoustic reference with my old RS SPL meter. If no power amp available, a SMSI Class D USB amp. Each has it's uses. Sweeps can find room resonances MLS doesn't. Different gating tells different stories. I used to have two mics but as I detest ported speakers and once in a box, I am looking at in-room performance, not box performance. I used to have a variable size test box and big IB panels for tweeters, but I skip all that now and go from simulation to prototype. It just did not tell me much. Delta mass is close enough for generating TS parameters. My last piece of test equipment is my wife. She has incredibly sensitive hearing to distortion. She can evaluate changes to amplifiers; no, no, yes, no, no, no. No idea how hard I worked on one or the cost. Same with speakers. It took 20 years of work, but when Harry James can get on it, she does not leave the room!

    Leave a comment:


  • tomzarbo
    replied
    Thanks for the history lesson regarding speaker design, it was an interesting peek back in time.

    Despite the progress made up to the 1990's or so, I seemed to still be quite lost during that time. Bass box pro and Xover pro programs really taught me quite a bit on how this stuff all works, but it wasn't until John Hollander took the time to help me with PCD that it started to click for me.. at that point sims and measurements began to overlap. My wife thought I was nuts when I ran through the house screaming " I found the Z offset! I finally have it!"

    Just imagine where we'd be without Jeff Bagbys PCS and his other programs.

    TomZ

    Leave a comment:


  • tvrgeek
    replied
    My first DSP was a Berhinger. Hated it; Took forever to boot and was way too noisey. Newer ( cheaper) stuff is far better. I bought it thinking it would help prototyping, but the difference in phase made the results useless even for traditional active crossovers.

    Maybe an irony. Full range need significant processing, but that defeats the entire "purity" argument their fans love. You know 12W tubes, passive RIAA, and 8 inch Fostex club.

    I still find a well done passive crossover to work fine in the mains. But sub instigation is best done active. I am about to buy a DSP for my living room sub as I only run one now and the room is not as easy as my last house. Living rooms do have to be lived in. My HT room/guest room I have a Anthem AVR. Their ARC is far better than Audessy and it actually convinced me DSP is valid. Still, best to get close and let the DSP fine tune than expect it to do everything. The better the drivers, the better the results. Not ready to put DSP into my living room mains. Still old school. Nak preamp, My own Mosfet amp and of course my own speakers. Maybe eventually. Need to get my Triumph Stag back on the road, build some furniture, build a new shed... Seems I never have time for anything after I retired.

    DSP has really been a boon to pro sound reinforcement. Huge, really huge. With a set of column speakers, ( 12 drivers minimum) a sub and some DSP, you can actually get decent sound all the way back in bad club rooms. Convincing bands to give up their big PeeVee 18 inch/EV horn PA is the hard part.

    Leave a comment:


  • fpitas
    replied
    Ain't technology grand? I got into this seriously when DSP based loudspeaker management became a reasonable alternative. DSP based active systems used to be exotic and rare, but not any more. I've probably saved thousands by not needing to try all those expensive passive crossover parts

    Leave a comment:

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