Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Looked at a B&W with plexi-wall yesterday...

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Looked at a B&W with plexi-wall yesterday...

    It was an older model, a Nautilus 803.



    FWIW- we're doing same/better than they are as a mass-producer.

    The coils are Jantzen P-Cores, and is paired with an NPE cap on the woofer section. I couldn't tell if that was a 3rd order filter or a 3.5-way setup being I couldn't trace the boards. They were also too close to the speakers' magnets and probably caused interference, as well as one coil being aimed at the next one.

    The resistors in the network were all of the standard-Bennic 10W variety.

    The midrange and tweeter board had hand-made 20AWG air-cores, and a large poly capacitor, "Made by iCW for Bowers & Wilkins".

    Then I looked up iCW, since I had some of those from the ol' surplus shop (RIP):

    http://www.icwltd.co.uk/

    The funny thing is this- apparently iCW is the parent company for ClarityCap:
    Axials /
    AX
    AP Axials /
    TW
    PW Power /
    FP
    SMF
    COAX Power /
    PCT
    PCP DC Link /
    SEG
    SMS DC Link /
    PCS
    Specials /
    Made to
    measure
    Audio
    ClarityCap
    www.claritycap.co.uk
    More or less, B&W uses a lesser ClarityCap in their speakers for he midrange, of the AX or AP range.

    I don't know if the 'open for view' was just for show, or if that is really what they use behind opaque wooden walls, but I still thought it was interesting.

    I also was able to audition a set of Paradigm Reference towers (not these, just a picture I found):



    They were about 8" from the adjacent treated wall or the large entertainment center they had setup, and they were set about 12' apart. There wasn't a central position to listen, and basically it would've been above/inside the listening axis of both towers. Almost as pictured above. So- given those restrictions, I squatted, moved around, up/down, close and far on individual axes, and came to the conclusion that they aren't 'spectacular'. The bass was a little lean, and supposedly only extends to 44 Hz for a trio of vented 6" woofers. The mids were either in a tight acoustic suspension chamber, or the suspension was very tight, cuz they didn't move easily. It's a dustcap, not a phase-plug, and appeared to be a poly/plastic of some sort, not metal. The highs were distinct and clean, but the 'air' top-octave was a little soft. The midrange was a little hollow, and not spacious enough.

    Granted, it could have been the setup, but I felt them lacking and will keep building my own stuff. Especially for $3.3k/pair!

    Just thought I'd inform the masses a bit....
    Later,
    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*

    Photobucket pages:
    https://app.photobucket.com/u/wolf_teeth_speaker

    My blog/writeups/thoughts here at PE:
    http://techtalk.parts-express.com/blog.php?u=4102

  • #2
    Re: Looked at a B&W with plexi-wall yesterday...

    I've heard these B&W. Honestly, wasn't impressed at all.
    http://www.diy-ny.com/

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Looked at a B&W with plexi-wall yesterday...

      Wow, that's quite a photographic memory. If I ever get mugged, I hope you're with me to describe the guy to the police sketch artist.
      Originally posted by Wolf View Post
      It was an older model, a Nautilus 803.

      The coils are Jantzen P-Cores, and is paired with an NPE cap on the woofer section. I couldn't tell if that was a 3rd order filter or a 3.5-way setup being I couldn't trace the boards. They were also too close to the speakers' magnets and probably caused interference, as well as one coil being aimed at the next one.

      The resistors in the network were all of the standard-Bennic 10W variety.

      The midrange and tweeter board had hand-made 20AWG air-cores, and a large poly capacitor, "Made by iCW for Bowers & Wilkins".

      Then I looked up iCW, since I had some of those from the ol' surplus shop (RIP):

      http://www.icwltd.co.uk/

      The funny thing is this- apparently iCW is the parent company for ClarityCap:


      More or less, B&W uses a lesser ClarityCap in their speakers for he midrange, of the AX or AP range.

      I don't know if the 'open for view' was just for show, or if that is really what they use behind opaque wooden walls, but I still thought it was interesting.
      Isn't it about time we started answering rhetorical questions?

      Paul Carmody's DIY Audio Projects
      Twitter: @undefinition1

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Looked at a B&W with plexi-wall yesterday...

        Paul:
        Thanks for the info on the guts of the B&W.

        I auditioned some B&W 804 and 805 diamonds last week. Really didn't notice much difference between the 804 and 805 TBH, but I was impressed overall with the 805 (for $3K less). The soundstage was very wide and the sound clear w/sufficient bass for music. They used a McIntosh integrated amp, not sure of the CD player.

        Not to hijack your thread, but do the speakers give the big soundstage, or is it the hardware, or you gotta have both? Would like to build some 805 repli-racers with some HiVi parts like the SC 5.1 in the showcase but ported, but am I just spinning my wheels w/o the hardware? One of the many things I like about you guys is doing more with less, but sometimes you have to get the goods. I don't know... Thoughts?

        Eric

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Looked at a B&W with plexi-wall yesterday...

          I think, but, I'm not 100% convinced, that an inexpensive efficient solid state "Class T" amp, so long as it has ample headroom, will give you more than 90% of the performance of the very best highest end uber expensive amp you could possibly buy - and - that (again) so long as you have sufficient headroom/power on the amp, that the combination of speakers & room far outweigh all other factors except one: your source material. Bad recordings will sound bad on the best equipment.

          I say not 100% convinced because, I have a solid state amp with plenty of power for simply awesome home theater - loud clean and clear at movie theater volumes, but, it just doesn't thrill me for music. Don't know why. I guess I miss the "euphonic"? sound of my cheap old tube amp I used to have?

          Anyway, I spent a few days listening to tons of different commercial speakers ranging from moderate to high end ($20,000 high end, anyway). Speakers and I disliked pretty much all of them, except for one pair.

          Most of the DIY speakers I've heard at most of the events over these past few years sound a little bit better than typical $1,000 - $5,000 commercial speakers - decent, but still not great. IMO. NO speakers get everything right - there are always comprises to be made, no such thing as a "no compromise" speaker. Simply can't be designed with today's technology. You have to make trade-offs and choices.

          One forum member on here who's very serious about his music recommends these speakers:

          http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...al_6_1_2_.html



          (with some modification, such as added bracing and damping inside the cabinet)

          I'm thinking about trying some myself.
          "...this is not a subwoofer" - Jeff Bagby ;)

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Looked at a B&W with plexi-wall yesterday...

            Well- I didn't listen to them, as it was an older model and they didn't even have a pair.
            That said- I did listen to the old 801's with the 15" woofer, and it didn't exend all that deep, the top end was sssibilant, and the midrange was glorious.

            Later,
            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*

            Photobucket pages:
            https://app.photobucket.com/u/wolf_teeth_speaker

            My blog/writeups/thoughts here at PE:
            http://techtalk.parts-express.com/blog.php?u=4102

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Looked at a B&W with plexi-wall yesterday...

              I'm not Paul, but you're welcome.

              It's a little bit of everything to get the best overall.

              You won't get there with the SC5.1, I guarantee it. It needs a redone xover and a non-preassembled variety.
              Later,
              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*

              Photobucket pages:
              https://app.photobucket.com/u/wolf_teeth_speaker

              My blog/writeups/thoughts here at PE:
              http://techtalk.parts-express.com/blog.php?u=4102

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Looked at a B&W with plexi-wall yesterday...

                Originally posted by IBM5150 View Post
                Paul:
                Thanks for the info on the guts of the B&W.

                I auditioned some B&W 804 and 805 diamonds last week. Really didn't notice much difference between the 804 and 805 TBH, but I was impressed overall with the 805 (for $3K less). The soundstage was very wide and the sound clear w/sufficient bass for music. They used a McIntosh integrated amp, not sure of the CD player.

                Not to hijack your thread, but do the speakers give the big soundstage, or is it the hardware, or you gotta have both? Would like to build some 805 repli-racers with some HiVi parts like the SC 5.1 in the showcase but ported, but am I just spinning my wheels w/o the hardware? One of the many things I like about you guys is doing more with less, but sometimes you have to get the goods. I don't know... Thoughts?




                Eric

                Uhmmm, "the hardware"? Whatever do you mean by that? Last time I checked pretty much everything involved in this hobby is "hardware", with the possible exception of digital music files, which are technically software...but still, what exactly do you mean by that?


                Mark
                You go your way, I'll go mine. I don't care if we get there on time.

                ~Pink Floyd

                Comment


                • #9
                  Thank you, all-knowing speaker builder....

                  Originally posted by critofur View Post
                  Anyway, I spent a few days listening to tons of different commercial speakers ranging from moderate to high end ($20,000 high end, anyway). Speakers and I disliked pretty much all of them, except for one pair.

                  Most of the DIY speakers I've heard at most of the events over these past few years sound a little bit better than typical $1,000 - $5,000 commercial speakers - decent, but still not great.
                  And there you go again basically saying that virtually none of your experiences with any of our DIY speakers were decent. Not great? Talk about a blanket derogatory statement for DIY speakers....

                  When are you going to bring a pair to show that will assumedly blow ours outta the water because we don't have a clue what we're doing, just so you can say that we don't know? I find it unlikely it will be soon.

                  Please, tell us what we're doing wrong oh great and powerful former Ohm-speaker factory worker! I have not seen you build but a set of BAMTM's, and I know those aren't the greatest thing I've ever experienced, but you said they sounded good, not just "decent".

                  If you have nothing better to do than basically shoot all of our efforts down in the hobby for speaker-building, please go somewhere else.

                  Later,
                  Wolf

                  PS- no offense meant to Mr. Krutke.
                  "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:
                  https://app.photobucket.com/u/wolf_teeth_speaker

                  My blog/writeups/thoughts here at PE:
                  http://techtalk.parts-express.com/blog.php?u=4102

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Looked at a B&W with plexi-wall yesterday...

                    I think he means the audio-rack-gear, Mark.

                    With that said, about a 300W/channel to avoid clipping is a common amount in reserves. Tube/SS is up to you, but I find SS has more control on the bass drivers. Clean AC power helps, and a decent source and DAC are another thing to consider.

                    With the above murmered, I use a Sony BD-S550, and a Technics receiver and companion DAC/decoder, and a Pi Audio Majik-BUSS. The only thing I want is a bit more juice on tap!

                    Later,
                    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*

                    Photobucket pages:
                    https://app.photobucket.com/u/wolf_teeth_speaker

                    My blog/writeups/thoughts here at PE:
                    http://techtalk.parts-express.com/blog.php?u=4102

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Thank you, all-knowing speaker builder....

                      Originally posted by Wolf View Post
                      And there you go again basically saying that virtually none of your experiences with any of our DIY speakers were decent. Not great? Talk about a blanket derogatory statement for DIY speakers....
                      I consistently say they are decent???
                      When are you going to bring a pair to show that will assumedly blow ours outta the water because we don't have a clue what we're doing, just so you can say that we don't know? I find it unlikely it will be soon.
                      I have consistently said that: existing technology is not sufficient to make "great" speakers - I have never claimed that I will develop technology that is, I just hope to make at least one pair of speakers that I simply can enjoy listening to for more than a half hour or so.
                      Please, tell us what we're doing wrong oh great and powerful former Ohm-speaker factory worker!
                      I've been doing that for years, helping at least a few folks, and starting my fair share of the most popular threads this and other forums. I'm sorry if I've been "talking down" to folks too many times, but I think you've taken it wrong recently. I'm not meaning to be arrogant when I've talked about testing 50 of this or that tweeter, or ordering this or that driver by the case - I'm just like a kid in a candy store, who probably shouldn't have let other kids see that I got a big bag of candy since I am not sharing with the whole class, but I just can't help it. I would say, it's like if I was proud of my new car (if I had one) I might wax it -but - I'm not polishing the tires and putting a dozen lights on the roof with smiley face covers and "grill protectors" and spinny shiney chrome hub caps! I'm just grinning to myself and thinking how cool it is to have cases of XT tweeters or Peerless HDS woofers sitting next to me, even if I don't get to use them all myself...
                      I have not seen you build but a set of BAMTM's, and I know those aren't the greatest thing I've ever experienced, but you said they sounded good, not just "decent".

                      If you have nothing better to do than basically shoot all of our efforts down in the hobby for speaker-building, please go somewhere else.

                      Later,
                      Wolf

                      PS- no offense meant to Mr. Krutke.
                      You're twisting what I said, I wasn't being derogatory, you don't seem to be reading all of my post.

                      Each time I've tried to build speakers for my self of my own design, I've given up disappointed, because I don't want "just decent".

                      I basically said that almost all of the speakers at those shows sounded better than $5,000 commercial speakers - how is that not a compliment?

                      The listening environments have pretty much always been far from optimal. Dan was disappointed with his Basslines at the show I heard them with, so I didn't really judge/comment about them.

                      I haven't had a chance with any of those speakers other than my Zaph BAMTMs to sit down and listen in depth in a comfortable location to music I enjoy. In THAT context, I said they sounded "good" on "some music". It seems like you're twisting and stretching things to make me sound bad.

                      Hardly anybody on these forums other than a select few notorious banned ex-members have been quite so negative as you, wolf, in your last post.

                      Telling me to go away after a post in which I comparatively compliment the general DIY efforts here - quite impressive that so many "hobbyists" are able to make better speakers for hundreds of dollars in their garages/apartments, whatnot that sound better than what they could buy for 5 - 10 times the cost, or perhaps more.

                      And before you talk up my arrogance too far, please bear in mind that I've never even claimed to be decent at crossover design, and as you see, I've admitted that I have yet to complete a personal design for myself, as I have given up disappointed each time - at most - half way through.

                      What I do have is years of experience mentoring under one of the industry's foremost speaker design experts, one who has truly worked to pursue his vision of sound quality rather than marketing driven mediocre mass produced products. I am overly critical, and not satisfied by speakers much anymore - to call one "decent" is praise, coming from me. Just the other day you read me say that B&W speakers costing thousands sound so bad I get a headache and can't stand to listen to them for more than a few minutes, yet, when I say that many of these DIY speakers sound ok, you tell me "go away"?

                      I take a little offense at your post (and I am fairly hard to offend), but, I have no desire to stop trying to continue a thoughtful dialog.
                      "...this is not a subwoofer" - Jeff Bagby ;)

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Looked at a B&W with plexi-wall yesterday...

                        Besides - even though it's nice if we're all courteous, supportive, and brotherly to each other. If we're all just saying "wow, that's great" repeat repeat repeat - I dunno - I don't think it should hurt to have one voice that keeps saying, eh, it's OK - it's my honest opinion and I'm not intending to be mean or rain on anyone's parade. I don't think I've been very far off the mark, or ever just wildly negative. I've never told any of the guys that their speakers flat out sucked. I've pretty much held my tongue, those few times when speakers were played that were simply bad.

                        There's a lot I don't know, and I admire John Krutke, Dan N., and Brandon's ability to use Sound Easy properly - being proficient in either that, or LspCAD such that I can both measure speakers and properly model boxes & baffles it's what's really holding me back from building some moderately good bookshelf speakers that I could bring to the next DIY show...

                        Well, I've got to get to bed, I'll send you a PM about Ohm again in a couple days...
                        "...this is not a subwoofer" - Jeff Bagby ;)

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Thank you, all-knowing speaker builder....

                          Alright I've thought a bit, and I'm going to give you a response on this and wasn't going to before. It's obvious you can't see directly what was offensive.

                          This is what's offensive:
                          Most of the DIY speakers I've heard at most of the events over these past few years sound a little bit better than typical $1,000 - $5,000 commercial speakers - decent, but still not great. IMO.
                          That says that an occasional one might be great, but that most of them are just merely decent and "NOT GREAT" or junk. This isn't the first time you've been called on your blanket statements as being harsh on DIY designs. To me or many others on this forum, the BR1 might be seen as "decent", or "needs improvement." "Decent" is not a compliment.

                          The fact is that you "don't like many speakers", you said so yourself, and that also comes across as your "I only like this one pair." To another it would seem as you are too picky, and are rather derogatory in your statements of DIY speakers as a whole.

                          As you recall I agreed with your sentiment on the B&W being hot. I understand that expensive speakers can indeed sound bad, and that also can be seen as a non-compliment since expensive ones are sometimes mediocre. How can you quantify comparing speakers in the $1k-5k mark to DIY as a compliment, if more costly ones don't sound good? That's contradiction.

                          You did say your BAMTM's were at least "Good on some music", alright, that's better than "decent", and "good" actually says something nice to the recipient. What speaker does not have a flaw in this or that piece of music is no speaker at all, as all of them suffer on some poor pieces. That sounds like you favor your own builds, but noone elses. It comes across as pompous.

                          That said- I didn't feel I was entirely mean before, but was putting things where they needed to be said. I didn't call you names, but more said titles in sarcasm, and I asked nicely to vacate if you couldn't say nice things, or maybe even constructive criticism. No- you don't have to applaud all the time, but give comments that could help in improvement instead of just biting your tongue. To improve upon current standings is a plus, and to help another get there is a good thing.

                          Decent is not good, and good is not great, but say why it's only decent, or maybe why it needs work. If you have something to say, being genuinely helpful is one way to not come across as a jerk or someone who thinks higher of themself than anyone else.

                          You have ideas to offer, so give them up instead of just name-dropping or alluding to name-dropping if you can't say whom. It makes you seem more sincere, instead of just a derogatory quasi-name-dropper who's been in the commercial speaker business.

                          Later,
                          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*

                          Photobucket pages:
                          https://app.photobucket.com/u/wolf_teeth_speaker

                          My blog/writeups/thoughts here at PE:
                          http://techtalk.parts-express.com/blog.php?u=4102

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Looked at a B&W with plexi-wall yesterday...

                            critofur:

                            i have seen you show dislike to just about everything on this board since i joined, from complete speakers, individual drivers (commercial or DIY) to wine.
                            i really know nothing of what is supposed to sound "good or great" but calling something decent is just that; a mediocre glass half empty comment.
                            i don't own anything that would be considered great, but i still enjoy it.
                            just cause i get to enjoy a filet mignon one night does not mean the box o' mac and cheese is decent.
                            i hope you find your audio nirvana and can enjoy something for more than a 1/2 hour, or you can enjoy "a lesser" wine than the best you ever had.
                            i did not see in wolf's post anywhere he was being rude, just pointing out what he has seen/heard and commented.
                            as more people get tighter with there money and/or put there blood /sweat and hard earned dough into there projects, they all deserve better than "decent" even if it is just on cabinet design, driver layout, overall looks, a certain octave that just spoke to your ears.
                            sometimes when someone can only find flaws in everything (music, wine, speakers, food, life, etc. etc.) the flaw ends up being themself. now before you fly off the handle, i say that only because i have been down that road.
                            "WHEN LIFE GIVES YOU LEMONS, SAY F0(K IT AND PAINT THEM GOLD"
                            THOMAS BROWN aka "STINKY"

                            I've got an idea - an idea so smart that my head would explode if I even began to know what I'm talking about. - Peter Griffin

                            I DON'T CARE WHAT KIND OF MUSIC YOU LISTEN TO, OR LIKE.
                            SHUT UP, PUT DOWN THE WALLS OF PRETENSION FOR 1 SECOND AND JUST LISTEN TO THE SONGS
                            - SCOTT IAN

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Looked at a B&W with plexi-wall yesterday...

                              Ah, there's the crux of the matter - when I said not great, I meant it literally and should have said it another way - because it is too easy to misinterpret with out that 90% of conversation, the non-verbal.
                              "...this is not a subwoofer" - Jeff Bagby ;)

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X