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  • An amazingly simple two way with some good reviews.

    Hi Gents,
    Common knowledge here says that a .5 to .75 CF two way using a single cap on the tweeter can't sound very good. (Except perhaps the Dyanaco a 25s) But, the Decaware 945 has a number of positive reviews, has been in production for about 10 years and is currently still available from the company for $1000 per pair. A bit of digging around reveals that it uses the 8" silver Flute mid woofer, the HiVi RT1C-a tweeter and a single 3.9uf capacitor in a 15L cabinet.
    I'm sure it doesn't measure well and there are obvious technical grounds to say it must sound terrible. But, as Scotmoose on DIY audio suggests, "sometimes very dodgy designs can sound surprisingly good." I'm very tempted to pick up a pair of Silver Flutess since I already have a pair of the HIvis in stock and throw a pair together. Is there a decent chance that I might be pleasantly surprised by the outcome? Thoughts, ideas and comments would be appreciated.

    Best,
    Jay

  • #2
    All I can imagine is that the poor off axis response combined with the on axis breakup kind of offset each other? It seems like a very compromised design.

    I have a soft spot for 8" 2 ways, but even in a good setup there are compromises to be made. This doesn't seem like something I'd spend much time experimenting with unless the drivers could be reworked with a proper filter after the experiment.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Drjay View Post
      Hi Gents,
      Common knowledge here says that a .5 to .75 CF two way using a single cap on the tweeter can't sound very good. (Except perhaps the Dyanaco a 25s) But, the Decaware 945 has a number of positive reviews, has been in production for about 10 years and is currently still available from the company for $1000 per pair. A bit of digging around reveals that it uses the 8" silver Flute mid woofer, the HiVi RT1C-a tweeter and a single 3.9uf capacitor in a 15L cabinet.
      I'm sure it doesn't measure well and there are obvious technical grounds to say it must sound terrible. But, as Scotmoose on DIY audio suggests, "sometimes very dodgy designs can sound surprisingly good." I'm very tempted to pick up a pair of Silver Flutess since I already have a pair of the HIvis in stock and throw a pair together. Is there a decent chance that I might be pleasantly surprised by the outcome? Thoughts, ideas and comments would be appreciated.

      Best,
      Jay
      Well, there is a lot to be said for minimalist crossovers. But when it comes to reviews. . . .

      Comment


      • #4
        Many's the time you see good reviews of flawed designs. What you don't see is a review of the flawed design compared to the result if it wasn't flawed, in this case the same speaker with a well engineered crossover.
        www.billfitzmaurice.com
        www.billfitzmaurice.info/forum

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Drjay View Post
          Is there a decent chance that I might be pleasantly surprised by the outcome?
          Absolutely.

          There is no doubt whatsoever that it is entirely possible that to your ears this speaker could be the best speaker you have ever heard.

          It's always worth finding out if you have the time and capacity to do so. Please...do it, and share the results with the community.

          It's a long time between drinks around here waiting for something new to show up....so please....pick one of these projects you've been posting about and DO IT!!
          Constructions: Dayton+SB 2-Way v1 | Dayton+SB 2-Way v2 | Fabios (SB Monitors)
          Refurbs: KLH 2 | Rega Ela Mk1

          Comment


          • #6
            I have to think the HiVi is straining at the gap between it and the Silver Flute with the single cap XO. Maybe a Vifa (Peerless) could make the gap, but my brain says a multi-part XO on both drivers would be needed for a smooth response. I like the sound of the 6" Silver Flute wool cone in about 12 L two-way (I'm sorry, I forget who's design it was from maybe 8 years ago), very smooth and balanced. Eight inch two-ways can sound really, really good. Have at it and see what you get!

            Comment


            • jim85iroc
              jim85iroc commented
              Editing a comment
              The Silver Flute doesn't start rolling off (on axis) until after the breakup at 5khz, so if they're crossing the HiVi that high, it can probably do OK with a 1st order crossover. I think the real issue here is the directivity and breakup from the woofer. Between that breakup and the lack of baffle step, I can't imagine how people can describe these as warm.

              As for the "silver flute" sound, I'm also quite fond of it also. I built Zaph's 5" 2 way design about 15 years ago for my inlaws and I'm still very impressed with those speakers. I ran the 6" Silver Flutes in my Camaro and was always pleased with them too. I've got another set of 6.5s that I want to build a small 2 way with.

          • #7
            In case anyone thinks I am strictly an armchair speaker speaker builder, I do actually build some. In the past 4 months I've completed, measured and spent listening time with three pairs of 2 ways I designed: They are :

            1. a 21L Rival 7" kevlar with a Peerless XT 25 BG30 tweeter.
            2. a 4.5L front ported, Peerless 830855 4" with Peerless DX20 BF00-04 tweeter.
            3. a 2.8L Aurasound NS3, with a Dayton ND16 tweeter.

            Over the past 5 years I have built more than 30 pairs including 5 different TABAQ MLTL designs, 5 different sub woofers, 6 different single driver designs and 8 different two ways designed by others.
            I like building and thinking about different designs and do post on speculative topics. But, my intent is not to waste people's time on topics or projects which I have no intention of truly considering. I am a beginner and greatly value the knowledge and experience of the forum residents. I have not posted build logs of my designs because, while they sound good to me and measure well on axis, I hesitate to say they are actually good designs. Until I have additional sets of experienced ears saying they sound good, off axis measurements, and truly expert designers saying the crossovers look competent, I'm reluctant to post details.
            Just some info about where I'm coming from when I post a topic like this one.

            Best,
            Jay

            Comment


            • jim85iroc
              jim85iroc commented
              Editing a comment
              If you're able to repurpose those drivers if you end up not liking this combo, I don't think you've got anything to lose. It's always fun to experiment, but I just can't imagine that there's any magic hiding inside this combo. That HiVi can't play low enough to cross before the woofer starts getting very directional, and despite the manufacturer's claims, the f3 in a small sealed box is going to be about 100hz, not 42hz. No bass, no baffle step, breakup at 5khz, etc. Maybe you'll love the sound, but my guess is that you won't, and since these drivers won't pair well in a traditional sense, their only use if you don't like the sound is in 2 separate applications. As I mentioned above, I really like Silver flutes and would love to use them more. What holds me back is that the 5" is the only one of the bunch that digs deep because the 6s and 8s have such a low qts, but they'd be fun to experiment with adding bucking magnets to raise the qts into a range where you can start to get some deep bass output from them. That could potentially be a fun way to repurpose these woofers if you didn't end up loving the Decaware clone.

          • #8
            Originally posted by Drjay View Post
            I have not posted build logs of my designs because, while they sound good to me and measure well on axis, I hesitate to say they are actually good designs. Until I have additional sets of experienced ears saying they sound good, off axis measurements, and truly expert designers saying the crossovers look competent, I'm reluctant to post details.
            ​​​​​​There is no rule in this international loudspeaker diy community of ours that says your designs must be critically acclaimed before you can share them. If they sound good to you, they'll sound good to someone else.

            If people really are this active, it would truly make places like this a tremendous joy to spend spare internet time browsing if more original projects and completed designs were shared.

            ​​​​​​You're not a beginner and seeing some of your original designs would be a breathe of fresh air. No disrespect to the usual names in kits but seeing kits put together in this community, although nice to see, is a bit of a dry lunch....I want to see some new designs, failed attempts or otherwise.



            P.s. I would go so far as to say there is more for this community to share, talk about and learn, from a flawed attempt than a perfected one.​​​​
            Last edited by DeZZar; 05-19-2021, 07:02 PM.
            Constructions: Dayton+SB 2-Way v1 | Dayton+SB 2-Way v2 | Fabios (SB Monitors)
            Refurbs: KLH 2 | Rega Ela Mk1

            Comment


            • jim85iroc
              jim85iroc commented
              Editing a comment
              agreed! Not only do I love reading build threads, but the brainstorming that goes on between members is always educational. It's why I posted my monkey coffin build. I don't really expect anybody to duplicate my design, but once I start posting my driver measurements and my likely-poor crossover attempts, I expect that not only will I learn a tremendous amount from the feedback that I get, but I hope that others around my skill level will too.

              I'd love to see Drjay post some of his designs, and I absolutely hope he posts this one if he goes through with it. There's just not enough documented designs out there for these Silver Flute drivers.

          • #9
            Keep in mind, quite a few consumer reviews come from people who have spent their lives listening to similarly poorly thought out commercial designs. For that matter, quite a few professional reviewers have done the same. Your brain starts correlating familiar impressions with "correct" impressions.

            Also keep in mind, for the most part, DIY speakers all follow some basic voicing guidelines. Flat on-axis, 4th order LR topology, bass reflex. The majority of our community designs have a lot in common. If these were planted in the middle of a DIY event, people would be polite - but they would not be well received.

            So if you are accustomed to the reasonable accuracy of the typical DIY design, a poorly thought out commercial design from someone like Decware will probably have you covering your ears.

            If this is indeed a Silverflute woofer (and it appears to be so), the sensitivity on it is advertised as 93.7db. The tweeter is advertised as 94db, but that is not the case above 10k. In a typical cabinet, they will be 88db sensitive below 800Hz. Pushing them up against a wall will help restore some of that, with concurrent boundary issues as a result.

            Don't fall for the hype, there is a reason Decware speakers have not been submitted to even Stereophile. Even those guys would probably not gush poetic. 6Moons, maybe, or Positive Feedback or Enjoy The Music.

            Build them for fun, and if you enjoy them - learn why. There is nothing wrong with enjoying any kind of speaker - but be prepared to question things if it turns out you like them.
            Don't listen to me - I have not sold any $150,000 speakers.

            Comment


            • #10
              I would like to build a speaker with a single cap crossover, and if I do it will sound good (at least to me). I haven't accomplished it yet, maybe someday. It enforces choosing very well behaved drivers, which certainly helps to achieve good sound. In addition to a small cap, I usually end up with an inductor to soften the woofers high end and a level matching resistor or L-pad on the tweeter.

              The RT1C is a nice sounding tweeter. A small woofer with a natural rolloff around 3-5 KHz may pair well with it if the SPL's are reasonably close. Don't worry too much about flat response, just go for "sounds good" instead.

              Comment


              • #11
                Originally posted by Drjay View Post
                I'm sure it doesn't measure well and there are obvious technical grounds to say it must sound terrible. But, as Scotmoose on DIY audio suggests, "sometimes very dodgy designs can sound surprisingly good." I'm very tempted to pick up a pair of Silver Flutess since I already have a pair of the HIvis in stock and throw a pair together. Is there a decent chance that I might be pleasantly surprised by the outcome? Thoughts, ideas and comments would be appreciated.
                8-10" midwoofers of decent efficiency with a cone that starts breaking up relatively low but in a fairly controlled manner in order to extend the usable high frequency response followed by a smooth fall off without significant peaks and dips have become increasingly rare but are still around (e.g. Monacor, SEAS,...). Combined with a large tweeter with decent low frequency performance capable of working with a low order crossover one can build an old fashioned budget 2 way. It is an interesting type of speaker with a characteristic sound that is not unpleasant in well executed designs. As pointed out by others it is not really high fidelity by modern standards but it is interesting and has been on my to-do list for many years to see what could be achieved at modest cost.

                Comment


                • #12
                  I've often looked at that Decware speaker and wondered how they could possibly justify the asking price. I'm even more stunned by the Zen Master design. You basically pay $3000 (over $5K for Wenge!) for some pretty basic woodworking and bolt up two $200 drivers. I remember the flack he took for claiming his EL84 amp used a triode output tube back in the day. It's not. Solid little amps, but there's nothing really fancy about the circuits or parts he uses. But I will give him credit for being a marketing master and understanding his customer base. I'm not surprised he's now selling cables and other "tweaks".

                  As far as the single cap on this speaker goes, maybe the tweeter is out of phase right where the woofer breaks up, cancelling out that peaking? I noticed he misstates the box volume in the description. He says it's 1/4 cubic feet, but the dimensions equate a .53 CuFt box if they use 3/4" material.
                  Co-conspirator in the development of the "CR Gnarly Fidelity Reduction Unit" - Registered Trademark, Patent Pending.

                  Comment


                  • #13
                    Likely a good assumption. The RT1Ca rolls off steep by 4k, and as a result, you can really only get down to 4.5k realistically. Using the first order xover will bring down it's humped low end response if chosen carefully.

                    When I used it for the Attitudes, I had a pretty stiff CR to flatten it out; 25 ohms and 0.68uF.; and used a 3rd electrical filter to get the knee up a touch.

                    I can see that Tom is likely right, causing a null at the woofer's breakup, but without BSC, it will sound thin.

                    Wolf
                    "Wolf, you shall now be known as "King of the Zip ties." -Pete00t
                    "Wolf and speakers equivalent to Picasso and 'Blue'" -dantheman
                    "He is a true ambassador for this forum and speaker DIY in general." -Ed Froste
                    "We're all in this together, so keep your stick on the ice!" - Red Green aka Steve Smith

                    *InDIYana event website*

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                    Comment


                    • #14
                      Originally posted by tom_s View Post
                      I'm even more stunned by the Zen Master design.
                      For sure. No enclosure, no crossover, no tweeter, just a slab with a driver. As for the slab, sure its two inch thickness looks impressive, but it won't work any better than veneered 3/4 inch MDF. How do they justify the price? So long as there are those willing to pay it that's all the justification they need.

                      www.billfitzmaurice.com
                      www.billfitzmaurice.info/forum

                      Comment


                      • #15
                        Early on I wanted to design a 3-way speaker using 1st order filters. It should be easy, right? A big overlap between the drivers, none running right up to the edge of their usable range. Then I did some reading and eventually saw the crossover for a Vandersteen 2ci. I quickly realized it's rarely as simple as just a cap or coil for the low or high pass.

                        I agree with JR - if all someone has heard are poorly designed budget speakers, then a slightly smoother, more expensive, but still very flawed design should sound better to the listener. But once you hear what a proper design sounds like, you can't un-hear it.

                        Drjay - I certainly don't want to discourage your exploration of this design. I say build a pair and report on what you hear. If it's c-r-a-p, then you still have the basics for what could be a nice, solid design - just not with that tweeter and not with a single cap for the HP. The Peerless DX25 "Beast-Mode" (has that been trademarked by JR yet? ) or maybe the DA25 would probably be a great pairing with the 8" Flutes since they can both cross fairly low.
                        Co-conspirator in the development of the "CR Gnarly Fidelity Reduction Unit" - Registered Trademark, Patent Pending.

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