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SDC (not MWAF) 2022 fallout thread....

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  • #16
    My comments to Josh were to embrace the inaccuracies of 4 minutes of judging. The SDC is a social event where everyone wants to hear how everyone else's speakers sounded in the same room with the same music. You really can't duplicate that separately. The whining and complaining will always be a part of the event. I enjoy all of it, so do what's easy and best for everyone including the PE staff.
    John H

    Synergy Horn, SLS-85, BMR-3L, Mini-TL, BR-2, Titan OB, B452, Udique, Vultus, Latus1, Seriatim, Aperivox,Pencil Tower


    • #17
      What a good time this weekend… I really enjoyed catching up with the guys, and having such a large open area seemed like a great place to hang out and do that.

      From what I gathered, it seemed like the judges all liked the judging-room, as it resembled our real-world living rooms more than a larger space.

      I didn’t seem to listen to very many speakers this time for whatever reason – maybe it just seemed nicer to hang out in the large open area. I did miss hearing many of the speakers like I used to, even my wife Eileen mentioned that she missed that as well, which surprised me a bit.

      Not hearing lots of speakers changed the feel of the day for her from being mostly a “Speaker Listening” event to more of a ‘hang-out’ day. Not that that’s all bad, it isn’t really possible for EVERYONE to listen at the same time as there were at times a LOT of people there, but maybe the location and size of the listening room kept some people from doing more listening than they normally would… I suspect that’s why I found myself not hearing too many speakers myself.

      Eileen and I discussed suggestions for possible suggestions for next year’s MWAF on the long ride home yesterday, and here is my/our ideas…

      Maybe we could display/distribute all the speaker entries in the main open gathering area when you first walk in. I ‘think’ there would be enough room if it were re-jigged a bit, possibly use the space near the two bathroom doors towards the rear/left of that large area as well.

      This year’s ‘speaker holding’ area could become a decently sized ‘jam room’ for us, with probably enough space for a good amount of chairs and enough accessibility for listeners to enter/exit from that first door, and setup/breakdown speakers from the door farther away.

      Of course, that would place the ‘official’ judges listening room too close to the ‘jam room,’ so maybe we could move the official judges room to where our ‘jam room’ was this year. Do you think with some thoughtful room treatments it could become a decent listening area for the judges?

      These are just a few ideas – not criticisms – just sharing my observations on how it flowed and a few ideas for possible changes. I’m sure the folks at PE have good ideas on changes too after seeing after-the-fact how things flowed. Version 2.0 is always better than Version 1.0 right? Nothing can be perfect the first time, and this will never fully please everyone anyway, but all the PE folks I talked to seemed very open to hearing our ideas on how things went. Parts Express does have some really nice people working for them and they were all super-nice all weekend.

      I had a great time, and I forgot how much I missed doing this! Thank you to the folks at PE.

      Zarbo Audio Projects Youtube Channel: * 320-641 Amp Review Youtube: *Veneering curves, seams, using heat-lock iron on method *Trimming veneer & tips *Curved Sides glue-up video
      *Part 2 *Gluing multiple curved laminations of HDF


      • #18
        I'm currently processing and will post pictures of all the winner circle speakers in the next hour or two, together with a short description of each one. They were all taken with my cell phone, but the quality is almost as good as my Nikon DSLR, believe it or not. Bill
        Totally Flat:
        Plumber's Delight:


        • #19
          I like the feedback so far and largely agree, with this basic points:
          Plus - The acoustics and lack of distraction in the judges room
          Plus - The large area to mingle and chat
          Minus - The jam room setup and timing made it difficult to get to hear everyone's projects, acoustics were a little odd

          Like every year, more time to listen would be good. I also like the idea of taking another step in making the audio judging more objective with blind evaluation like Wolf is suggesting. I generally liked the venue, nice space! Also, fully agree that it's impossible to satisfy everyone so huge props to Parts Express for trying!

          I was a little disappointed I didn't place, but there are a whole lot of excellent builders to contend with so it's all good. One always hopes Looking forward to seeing the judges notes!
          Electronics engineer, woofer enthusiast, and musician.
          Wogg Music
          Published projects: PPA100 Bass Guitar Amp, ISO El-Cheapo Sub, Indy 8 2.1 powered sub, MicroSat, SuperNova Minimus


          • #20
            I'll start with a few pics of the 1st place winner in the open unlimited category: Charlie Laub. His entry was SP03 and named "Baffle-less-ness." A wire frame was used to hold 3 of the 4 drivers in open air without baffle. The sub was mounted in an enclosure. Drivers were: 1) Tweeter: GRS PT2522 (2.7kHz+), 2) Midrange: Dayton RS150P-4a (600-2.7kHz), 3) Woofer: Dayton RS270P-4a (150-600Hz), and 4) Subwoofer: UM12-22 (150Hz and below).

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            • #21
              2nd place in the open unlimited category went to Julian F. This was SP29, named "T3-0 Omnipresence". Drivers were the Peerless 25mm corundum dome tweeter, the Dayton 2" dome midrange, and (not sure) I think he used a sidefiring Dayton RS series 8 inch woofer. They used very unique and interesting looking spherical diffusers mounted just above the tweeter and midrange drivers to create an omnidirectional radiation pattern. Beautiful cabinet and finishing work.

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              • #22
                3rd place in open unlimited went to Jack. His speaker was a tower system with omnidirectional diffuser on top. I did not get the name or driver listing for this one. Hopefully this is the correct picture; not sure about this one?

                EDIT: Added a couple pics of AMT tweeter section that gones on top. Also added a closeup pic of the midrange/dome tweeter diffuser.

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                Last edited by 4thtry; 08-08-2022, 03:04 PM. Reason: Added AMT tweeter & diffuser pics
                Totally Flat:
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                • tomzarbo
                  tomzarbo commented
                  Editing a comment
                  I had a nice conversation with him for a bit about his creation, and he didn't actually even end up using the tweeter in the coax unit, just the large AMT. We were kidding that the unused tweeter in the coax unit could be marketed as a "Continuously Repositionable Driver Phase Plug" or something like that.

                  They're not my speakers, though, so I shouldn't tell his business as to why.


              • #23
                Yes, Bill, that is the correct build for the third place under unlimited. There is an AMT tweeter that set on top of that. Don't really know how he worked them together, but the coax underneath the cone disperser is something that made me question how he had them integrated.
                "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*

                Photobucket pages:

                My blog/writeups/thoughts here at PE:


                • #24
                  Originally posted by Wolf View Post
                  Yes, Bill, that is the correct build for the third place under unlimited. There is an AMT tweeter that set on top of that. Don't really know how he worked them together, but the coax underneath the cone disperser is something that made me question how he had them integrated.
                  Thanks, Ben. I'll edit my post above and add some closup pics that I took of the tweeter section on top.
                  Totally Flat:
                  Plumber's Delight:


                  • #25
                    1st place for the > $300 category went to Dan N. for his "WGO - Waveguide Omni" (SP44). This was a large omnidirectional tower with the following drivers: AE TD 124, B&C 6MPX44, SPA 21RDC, and SB215DC. They cranked these speakers up fairly high in the jam room and they could really pack a punch. Very wide and diffused type soundstaging.

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                    • #26
                      2nd place in the over $300 category went to Adam M. for his "Nighthawk" speakers (SP30). These were black towers with an open back midrange and enclosed woofer. Drivers were the Fountek NECCD 3.5H ribbon tweeters, Tang Band W5-16115F 5" midranges, and Dayton RS 225-8 woofers. The baffle was constructed of oak and aluminum strips laminated together. The oak was painted black for improved contrast against the aluminum (this works well as you can see). The baffle edges were faceted and tapered toward the top.

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                      Last edited by 4thtry; 08-08-2022, 08:32 PM. Reason: Correction to woofer impedance
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                      • #27
                        Hello All, Josh Here.

                        Very good points about what you liked and what can be improved, I feel it too. We wanted to improve the judging experience so your speakers could be evaluated in optimal (as close as possible) conditions, but in doing so we reduced the communal cohesiveness of the event. We knew this would be a byproduct, which is why we created the jam room but there are elements that we'll need to adjust. Lots of good feedback on how to improve this, so we'll get to work on next year's plan while it's fresh. What did not change was the skill of the entries and the comradery; your unique skillsets are such a privilege to witness and I thank you for sharing your talents with each other and the staff at Parts Express.

                        Onward and upward,

                        Josh Wickersham


                        • #28
                          3rd place in the over $300 category was me (Bill S.) The speaker name was "Diffractorama" (SP19). Drivers were the Morel TM4055-8 TweeMid's and Rival Acoustics R176P-08 seven inch woofers. Crossovers were 850Hz and 3700Hz 4th order acoustical. Woofer loading was a 47" long ML-TL tuned to 31Hz. The idea behind the big 17" red donuts was my attempt to replicate the on and off-axis diffraction signature of a large IEC test baffle (53 x 64" with standard IEC driver offset) in a much smaller package.

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                          • marvin
                            marvin commented
                            Editing a comment
                            Nice looking crossovers, Bill! Too nice to hide inside.

                            The pics look great, too!

                          • 4thtry
                            4thtry commented
                            Editing a comment
                            Thanks, Marvin! It is amazing what these new cell phone cameras can do.

                        • #29
                          First, I'd like to thank all the PE folks who were there dealing with all us speaker geeks, for holding after a couple year hiatus and for trying some new approaches. I very much enjoyed the experience again this year. My more specific thoughts on the venue and setup are as follows:

                          I liked the separate speaker room. It was an improvement over having all the speakers in the same room where the judging and music playing was happening, in terms of the added ability to discuss the details and thoughts of the designers, or simply catching up with friends without competing with speaker auditioning. I think the speaker room could have been combined with the big outer room, rather than having two separate gathering spaces. At times in the past, where all it all took place in one room, some of the discussion at the back of the room tended to intrude on the judging and listening that was going on concurrently.

                          Coming in, I thought the separate judging room and jam room was a great idea, but in reality it seemed to be an overall negative. In the past, I would estimate that I heard almost every speaker that was judged/auditioned on a given day of the event. I ended up really missing the ability to hear what the judges heard when comparing all the speakers in each category. For whatever reason, I was just not drawn to the jam room and probably heard less than 25% of the speakers that played on Saturday.

                          Not having been in the judges shoes, all I can go by is what I heard and observed with my own speakers in the judging room. I thought the idea of a smaller room that was more like a normal listening space in a home would yield a sound more similar to what we all hear in our own homes. In my case, it was quite the opposite. The sound in the judging room was more different from what I hear in my listening space at home that I can recall at any other prior MWAF or InDIYana setting. My speculation is that perhaps that small room, with reflection damping turned out to be less than ideal for speakers that have significant side or rear (or both) output, like omni's and/or dipoles.

                          FWIW, I really ended up missing hearing all the speakers as they were judged and hearing from the designers all about the development of their designs. I'd probably prefer a two room event, one for speaker storage, hanging out, etc. and one that is for judging and auditioning, but where the room is large enough for a reasonable size audience could be accommodated, so we could all hear what the judges heard, not only the same pieces of music, but in the same setting for all speakers and also hear the designers thoughts and intentions. The big central room might be used for speaker storage and communal space and either the room that housed the speakers this year or the jam room could be used for judging and audience auditioning.

                          I wonder if it would work to combine judging and jam by doing 3 minutes of judge selected music, followed by maybe 3 minutes of designer selected music.
                          Dan N.


                          • #30
                            Originally posted by jhollander View Post
                            How else would we know about how the devil went down to Georgia and built a giant speaker at Lockheed Martin?

                            jhollander Since that is the song I cranked in the lobby I am not sure if this comment is directed at my tapped horn sub or not (although I don't understand the Lockheed Martin part).

                            Sorry If it was a little loud, while we were tearing down I had two excited guys run up to me saying "We want to hear this sub LOUDER" so I let her rip.
                            Your results may vary.