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Tarkus Build Thread

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  • Tarkus Build Thread

    well, it only took a year, but here we are

    *skip if easily bored*

    i've got a heck of a theater setup in the basement with (3) DIYSG Fusion 8's, (3) magnus-12 front array, (2) Volt 6's, (4) infinity 1262s nearfield

    htpc --> udac8 --> diy unbal to bal converter with THAT1646 --> inuke3000dsp for subs, diy icepower 500asp + (2) 500A hangers for LCR, aiyima A07 for Surr

    so that said, the upstairs tv didnt get much love. so i ripped out a polk audio surround system and went searching. i realized i wanted a dedicated 2ch system for the upstairs, i wanted full range, so i wasn't totally set on any bookshelf style, and the bass needed to come out of something larger than a 6".

    i pined over troels designs, and althought his stuff is amazing, it's expensive, maybe one day. the uluwatu was near top of the list, but the build looked a touch more complex than i wanted and felt you could get something similar with just a larger driver. the apollos and helix MTMs honestly probably would have been built if there wasn't a back order on parts at the time i was considering, but again, still wanted something with a large driver incorporated. and then i stumbled upon the tarkus, boom, lets go

    i was then so inspired by the top most build on paul's tarkus page, and the wife liked it too, so i was sold

    components ordered, baltic birch procured, lets get to building

    *ok, sorry, normal stuff now*

    wood chopped up, tops mostly glued

    braces for the upper array, 3/4" dowel

    braced and foamed before the faces went on (boot with tha fuuuuur)

    got this idea from another thread on attaching the port, basically we took and routed out the port dimension into a block of wood, glued the wood to the backwall, and used E6000 adhesive to glue the port in the hole

    then just flush routed and put a round over on it, came out nice

    port in

    some crossover love, went with the zister resistors (also had some rpi heatsinks i put on them) and audyn q4 caps as a slight bump

    testing them out

    faces on, time for the finish

  • #2

    so we modeled it after the 'sunburst' build from the tarkus page, bolland83 i believe is the user name here

    he did his with mdf, so adding the faux grain wasn't needed

    baltic birch can be a blotchy wood, so we went with aniline dye (keda kit from amazon) and went with their straight brown. i believe we did 1/16th teaspoon per 1oz (bought these little 1/32 teaspoon scoops from amazon), mixed with water, sprayed with a HF HVLP Purple Gun

    came out really nice

    makeshift spray booth with a popup tent and 0.31mil plastic from amazon

    also had some scrap wood lying around, bought some lazy susan things, and made little spinny platforms

    all dyed up

    on to the sunburst.

    grabbed a 2oz ceramcoat black acrylic paint from hobby lobby for like 2 bucks, watered it down 50/50, and ran it through the crappiest harbor freight airbrush they sell for like 10 bucks, and it worked awesome!!

    however, what wasn't awesome was my technique, yikes! needless to say this was done on the backs of the speakers which were then later filled in to all black. i thought i could 'blend' it in directly, but it looked like crap

    however, after some practice, i got the technique down, they key was to spray INWARD to the wood from the outside which gave the affect i wanted

    little plate trick. cut out the middles of the plate so your hand can go through them, tape to the back of the speaker hole. then, cut another plate to cover the hole

    finished off with renner 851 clearcoat in a 25 sheen (all products were water based on this build)

    voila, they sound incredible, thanks to paul for his beautiful design, and bolland83 for his inspiration for the burst look


    • #3
      final thoughts: they really do sound utterly amazing, the imaging is unbelievable, the depth, everything is so clear. grinning from ear to ear

      the AVR is going away, i have a Topping E30 (that i actually already hooked up to the AVR last night) and a DIY L20.5 amp

      the amp blew on my first power up, and took out my power supply with it, so i'm in the process of doing a full rebuild of the L20.5 amp with true toshiba transistors, replacing all caps, and a few other resistors. should be done shortly

      thanks all for having a look!


      • #4
        Nice work! The finish looks great. I'll need to look into the L20.5 amp details as this is the first I have heard of it.
        My Builds - Vigor (Nola Brio Knockoff) - Overnight Sensations w/ Voxel - Speedsters in surplus boxes - Zaph B3N's in bamboo - Classix II in BR-1 cabinets - Dual TPA3116 D2 amp in an old music box - Mariposas


        • #5
          Originally posted by silverD View Post
          Nice work! The finish looks great. I'll need to look into the L20.5 amp details as this is the first I have heard of it.
          thanks! yeah, it's a highly regarded blameless amp design, just be careful, the ones off ebay aren't exactly known to be overly reliable. i'd steer clear of the KEC KTB817 KTD1047 and try the ONSEMI NJW0302G NJW0281G builds, hopefully those wont have as high a failure rate. if you can find the toshiba TTC5200 and TTA1943, those would be a better option (digikey has em)


          • #6
            Really well executed build, Sir!

            It blends well with the furniture and I'll bet they sound great in that room.

            BTW, thanks for the build/finishing tips - very helpful.


            • #7
              Great work! That clear coat really makes the sunburst finish pop (burst?) !


              • #8
                These are so good! You should be really proud! I hope they bring you years of enjoyment.
                Isn't it about time we started answering rhetorical questions?

                Paul Carmody's DIY Audio Projects
                Twitter: @undefinition1


                • #9
                  Yep, gotta give kudos to Paul for his designs and willingness to share and help others. I've built his Overnight Senations, Cores (that doesn't seem like the correct name...), and Sunflowers (my go to speaker for a few years now). All GREAT speakers! He also helped me with another speaker build (he did all the design work). I'm sure you won't be sorry with the Tarkuses.
                  There are some great members on this forum.
                  "We're speaker geeks, not speaker nerds. Nerds make money!" Marty H
                  Bismarck, North Dakota
                  My Current System: HiFiMe DIY T3 Amp, Kenwood Basic C1 Preamp, and Paul Carmody Sunflowers
                  My Garage System TPS3116D2 Amp, DIY PS 95 Speakers, DC 130 Sub


                  • #10
                    Beautiful! Instantly makes me think of a Les Paul Jr. Glenn.


                    • #11

                      Tarki ?


                      • #12
                        Tarkii. I think (anyone who took Latin less than fifty years ago ??)

                        Tarkare, Tarkorarum,Tarkoramii......Mrs. Ehrlich, where are you now that we need you?


                        • #13
                          Well, now you can have some Tarkii along with your Thanksgiving dinner . . .


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Paul Carmody View Post
                            These are so good! You should be really proud! I hope they bring you years of enjoyment.
                            thank YOU paul, what an excellent design, it's everything i wanted in a speaker. there really isnt anything i haven't thrown at it that it just doesnt sound incredible on. heck even throwing on a movie the other day and it was awesome! really well done, and thank you again

                            i'm paranoid i hooked up the reverse polarity wrong on the upper array even though i checked like 50 times, so i'll get some measurements of the speakers when i have some time this holiday weekend


                            • #15
                              The Tarkus was my first ever speaker build. I hadn't expected for them to sound so good. Paul's description of them on his website was what sold me on the design, that and the modest price of the components. It proves that you don't have to go for high end exotic drivers to produce a great sound. I won't be doing another build. These are far better than my ears deserve.
                              Attached Files
                              Last edited by Threadbare; 06-09-2022, 06:21 PM.