Speakers, Measurements & DIY with Mark Seaton - AVS Forum
Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
post #1 of 22 Old 12-11-2013, 02:27 PM - Thread Starter
AVS Special Member
 
Scott Wilkinson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Burbank, CA
Posts: 1,345
Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 353 Post(s)
Liked: 1185

Speaker designer Mark Seaton explains how he got involved in designing speakers and founded Seaton Sound, how his Catalyst speakers were developed out of enthusiast meet-ups, the advantages of self-powered speakers and coaxial drivers, why he uses sealed cabinets for his SubMersive subwoofers, the value of objective measurements and their relationship to subjective listening, his support of the do-it-yourself community, tips and tricks for DIYers, answers to chat-room questions, and more.

 

its phillip likes this.

Scott Wilkinson
AVS Editor
Scott Wilkinson is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 22 Old 12-11-2013, 03:31 PM
Senior Writer @ AVS
 
imagic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 6,399
Mentioned: 30 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1731 Post(s)
Liked: 3066

I remember listening to the @Mark Seaton's Catalyst 12c at an AVS get-together this past spring. They were amazing-sounding speakers. The guy sure knows his stuff. He's right about the DIY section! Those guys are ahead of the curve.

PcGeek626 likes this.

Find out more about Mark Henninger at www.imagicdigital.com
imagic is online now  
post #3 of 22 Old 12-11-2013, 08:11 PM
AVS Special Member
 
cuzed2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Chicago Area
Posts: 4,445
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 16 Post(s)
Liked: 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic View Post

I remember listening to the @Mark Seaton
's Catalyst 12c at an AVS get-together this past spring. They were amazing-sounding speakers. The guy sure knows his stuff. He's right about the DIY section! Those guys are ahead of the curve.

Mark,

+2 well put !

Cuzed2
Check out a video of my theater here
CuznEddy Cinema
Officially Hanesamatized on 8/1/09

cuzed2 is online now  
post #4 of 22 Old 12-11-2013, 08:53 PM
AVS Special Member
 
thorr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: San Diego, CA USA
Posts: 1,703
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 15
Very interesting, thanks! I have Polk RT-3000p speakers for my front mains, and RT-2000p speakers for my surrounds and backs and a CS-1000p for my center (7.1 setup). All of them have powered subwoofers in them. Additionally I have a Paradigm Servo 15 for the LFE channel (I also use the two back speakers sub woofers with the LFE channel so it is sort of 7.3). I love being able to dial-in just the right amount of bass on each speaker to get the speakers sounding great at all frequencies, and my 200W per channel Sunfire Cinema 7 amp only needs to drive the smaller parts of the speakers, so they get lots of power. I was intrigued by the Seaton Sound speakers. Wish I could hear them in person. The price is well beyond my means, but one can dream about it.

Really been enjoying your videos, Scott. Thanks a lot!

Mike
thorr is offline  
post #5 of 22 Old 12-11-2013, 09:31 PM
AVS Special Member
 
mtbdudex's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: SE Michigan
Posts: 4,753
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 77 Post(s)
Liked: 306
I met Mark in person at a SE Michigan GTG (called a HEMI meet) 5-6 weeks ago, a very passionate audio person.
Too late now, I need my sleep, will watch this video tomorrow.
mtbdudex is offline  
post #6 of 22 Old 12-11-2013, 09:35 PM
Advanced Member
 
HFGuy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Toronto
Posts: 586
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 23 Post(s)
Liked: 21
Great interview. I am curious if Mark has a recommendation for powering all his active speakers. Does he recommend wiring them all in a particular way or just wire them all to whatever outlet and don't worry about ground loops ?
HFGuy is offline  
post #7 of 22 Old 12-12-2013, 09:43 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Mark Seaton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Chicago, IL, USA
Posts: 6,085
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 105 Post(s)
Liked: 321
Quote:
Originally Posted by HFGuy View Post

Great interview. I am curious if Mark has a recommendation for powering all his active speakers. Does he recommend wiring them all in a particular way or just wire them all to whatever outlet and don't worry about ground loops ?

Hi HFGuy,

Good to hear you enjoyed the interview. The best practice is typically to home run power and grounds from the panel to each outlet for the speakers, subwoofer and source electronics. Also important is to ground the preamp if it uses 2 prong power cord as is the case with most all Integra, Onkyo, Marantz and the like, so the system references the same ground. A safe rule of thumb for circuit rating is to roughly account for 1/4 the available audio power for the main speakers, and 1/3rd the available subwoofer power.

Mark Seaton
Seaton Sound, Inc.
"Make no little plans; they have no magic to stir men's blood..." Daniel H. Burnham
Mark Seaton is offline  
post #8 of 22 Old 12-12-2013, 10:16 PM
Member
 
Ediddy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Illinois
Posts: 169
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 19 Post(s)
Liked: 44
Mark good seeing you again yesterday. Love my dual Submursives. Why didn't you mention you're an internet star? Lol. Great job
Ediddy is online now  
post #9 of 22 Old 12-12-2013, 10:17 PM
Member
 
Ediddy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Illinois
Posts: 169
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 19 Post(s)
Liked: 44
Meant submersive!
Ediddy is online now  
post #10 of 22 Old 12-13-2013, 11:53 AM
Member
 
Bassfeen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: UK & Asia
Posts: 149
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Liked: 11
Yeh we do hold Seaton Speakers in high regards, My Neighbourhood also thinks the same. The subwoofer rattles windows down 3 doors away. Now 2 more on there way am hoping all hell breaks out with the local community.

Home Theatre: Onkyo PR SC 5509, ATI 3007 Danley SH50, Danley SH69, Danley SH100 (Rear), Seaton Subwoofer X 2, Custom Made Acoustic Panels and Bass Traps.

2 Channel System: Philharmonics 3, GD Audio Master 2 Mono Blocks, GD Audio Master 1 Pre-Amp. Wireworld Eclipse Gold 5 Silver XLR, Clear Day...
Bassfeen is online now  
post #11 of 22 Old 12-13-2013, 03:05 PM
AVS Special Member
 
tuxedocivic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Ladysmith, BC
Posts: 5,101
Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 572 Post(s)
Liked: 659
Wow great. Can't wait to listen.
tuxedocivic is offline  
post #12 of 22 Old 12-16-2013, 03:37 PM
Advanced Member
 
RLBURNSIDE's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 933
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 131 Post(s)
Liked: 172
Question for Mark Seaton, if you read this, have you ever considered adding a Wisa module to the Catalysts?

They seem like an ideal match. I would totally buy them if they had that, even if I did have to purchase 2 at first then get my center channel later.

Heard too many good things about the Catalysts to not consider it for my next speaker, despite the cost.
RLBURNSIDE is offline  
post #13 of 22 Old 12-17-2013, 05:57 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Mark Seaton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Chicago, IL, USA
Posts: 6,085
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 105 Post(s)
Liked: 321
Quote:
Originally Posted by RLBURNSIDE View Post

Question for Mark Seaton, if you read this, have you ever considered adding a Wisa module to the Catalysts?

They seem like an ideal match. I would totally buy them if they had that, even if I did have to purchase 2 at first then get my center channel later.

Heard too many good things about the Catalysts to not consider it for my next speaker, despite the cost.

Hi RL',

I have long found concepts such as WiSA attractive having tinkered with less turnkey, wired options which have been available and used in the professional audio world for more than a decade. While I have seen WiSA mentioned before, I haven't yet looked into the hardware side of it. Hopefully we will see some ready to add chipsets become available in the near future to make it practical for niche manufacturers like myself to implement. The final concern and hurdle boils down to deciding if we are in a position to add WiFi/network support to what is already involved in speaker setup. The concepts look solid and I've investigated related technologies. I much preferred a wired network connection, but how well it is executed is what really matters.

Mark Seaton
Seaton Sound, Inc.
"Make no little plans; they have no magic to stir men's blood..." Daniel H. Burnham
Mark Seaton is offline  
post #14 of 22 Old 12-19-2013, 09:16 AM
Advanced Member
 
RLBURNSIDE's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 933
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 131 Post(s)
Liked: 172
Reason I ask is because I throw a lot of loft parties, and being able to place my speakers where I want to is a big plus for me (and I'm sure many others), without having crazy partiers trip over speaker wires or have to duct tape my floor. Wired is fine for static setups like dedicated home theaters or houses, but I like having placement flexibility and not have to worry or be locked to one set of arrangements. It's more important for the rears and surround speakers to be wireless, for sure, but I'm sure you'd make a killing selling a 7.1 Wisa setup.

I also see that Wisa would let users add new codec support like Dolby Atmos to our home theaters via just a codec download to your HTPC, which then does all the audio decoding and the Wisa transmitter handles the transport. I'd rather put more money into my speakers than receivers with endless upgrades, which would become obsolete or at least be less expensive (no amp section, woot!)

I generally want my video feed to be separate from my audio feed, after too much angst and frustration trying to get 3D to my projector and having to bypass my receiver (hdmi 1.3), I've decided I don't want that to happen again with 4K HDMI 2 which still doesn't support more than 60hz at 4k. Wisa gives me all the future-proofing and codec flexiblity I could possibly want from my HTPC directly, with no extra processing lag, or having to connect analog outs from my sound card directly into a power amp (which I've done, but it's risky because PC cases suck for analog audio outs I think, and there are static pops that can damage an amp when you turn it on).

Thanks for answering! I look forward to any news you might have.

An idea for Scott, why not send Mark the contact info of the Wisa president and hook it up! I remember the other interviews here on AVS about Wisa and getting some prototypes up and running would be very exciting for 2014!
RLBURNSIDE is offline  
post #15 of 22 Old 12-19-2013, 05:15 PM
AVS Special Member
 
N8DOGG's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Canada
Posts: 5,923
Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 267 Post(s)
Liked: 342
One thing I'll say about SeatonSound that could be a HUGE turn off, is their website. You can have the best products in the world and if the website is awful, people won't even look twice at it.
Theres something to be said for having all the info for all your products for easy access, not having to rumble through some forum to find bits and pieces. It's been years and still no proper website.
Especially if you are an internet based company, I find it crazy how Mark doesn't have a proper website yet.

If you were some random person looking at speakers and came across a few companys with what you were looking for, who would you buy from, the company with a proper website with all info and links in a professional manner or a crude forum? Of course, us AVS'ers knowing what awesome is there would be different but to someone not in the know, I'd bet they would pass Seaton Sound by.

Of course thats just my opinion but especially these days, good websites are a big part of the info gathering that we all seem to love to do.

Blasting brown notes for 10 years and counting!

N8DOGG is online now  
post #16 of 22 Old 12-19-2013, 05:34 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Mark Seaton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Chicago, IL, USA
Posts: 6,085
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 105 Post(s)
Liked: 321
Quote:
Originally Posted by N8DOGG View Post

One thing I'll say about SeatonSound that could be a HUGE turn off, is their website. You can have the best products in the world and if the website is awful, people won't even look twice at it.
Theres something to be said for having all the info for all your products for easy access, not having to rumble through some forum to find bits and pieces. It's been years and still no proper website.
Especially if you are an internet based company, I find it crazy how Mark doesn't have a proper website yet.

If you were some random person looking at speakers and came across a few companys with what you were looking for, who would you buy from, the company with a proper website with all info and links in a professional manner or a crude forum? Of course, us AVS'ers knowing what awesome is there would be different but to someone not in the know, I'd bet they would pass Seaton Sound by.

Of course thats just my opinion but especially these days, good websites are a big part of the info gathering that we all seem to love to do.

I certainly hear you and others who have echoed the same sentiments. As mentioned toward the end of the interview, the website with proper product details will be going up before the end of the year. Pictures will be up but we will be re-doing them with better lighting over the next few months. You are certainly correct that many pass us by in not having the website functional, but we have also had yet another year of healthy growth and record sales. Seaton Sound will be much more visible and easier to purchase from in 2014 along with more than a few product introductions (mostly main speakers & surrounds).

Mark Seaton
Seaton Sound, Inc.
"Make no little plans; they have no magic to stir men's blood..." Daniel H. Burnham
Mark Seaton is offline  
post #17 of 22 Old 12-19-2013, 06:47 PM
AVS Special Member
 
N8DOGG's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Canada
Posts: 5,923
Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 267 Post(s)
Liked: 342
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Seaton View Post

I certainly hear you and others who have echoed the same sentiments. As mentioned toward the end of the interview, the website with proper product details will be going up before the end of the year. Pictures will be up but we will be re-doing them with better lighting over the next few months. You are certainly correct that many pass us by in not having the website functional, but we have also had yet another year of healthy growth and record sales. Seaton Sound will be much more visible and easier to purchase from in 2014 along with more than a few product introductions (mostly main speakers & surrounds).

I know with a fully functioning website, it will do nothing but great things for your business. I have no doubt you had a great year, awesome products usually do pretty well!

Blasting brown notes for 10 years and counting!

N8DOGG is online now  
post #18 of 22 Old 12-19-2013, 11:03 PM
Bass Enabler
 
Scott Simonian's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Clovis, CA
Posts: 14,309
Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 859 Post(s)
Liked: 1030
Quote:
Originally Posted by N8DOGG View Post

I know with a fully functioning website, it will do nothing but great things for your business. I have no doubt you had a great year, awesome products usually do pretty well!

Definitely. I'm interested in what you are bringing out in 2014, Mark. Should be good stuff, nonetheless. Wish you the best success, Mark!

My Dual 18" LLT subs 120dB down to 10hz

 

Plan9Reloaded Co-host

Listen to the Plan9Reloaded Gaming and Technology Podcast (may contain NSFW language)

https://soundcloud.com/plan9reloaded/sets/podcast - direct pod link

http://plan9reloaded.com/site/ - main website

Scott Simonian is online now  
post #19 of 22 Old 12-26-2013, 08:45 PM
AVS Special Member
 
DS-21's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 3,573
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 224 Post(s)
Liked: 247
Nice podcast, and props for reaching out to a knowledgeable niche player like Mark!

As someone who’s followed Mark’s career since the “Basslist” days (mid-late 1990s), it’s nice to see Seaton Sound taking off. I’ve not yet had a chance to hear his Catalyst or Spark models, but they are very sound designs on paper (powerful DSP to get the axial response as desired, concentric driver for consistent directivity through the mids and all but the top octave of treble, spaced woofers for smoother upper-bass response in a room.) and a very good value considering the parts cost and design quality. I’d love to hear them someday.
(The Submersive also looks like a very solid and extremely carefully optimized sub using excellent parts, but ultimately it’s just a sub. Compared to good mains, subs are comparatively easy.)

Though I do quibble with Mark’s contention that concentric drivers don’t measure as well. Admittedly, the concentric drivers available to DIYers and OEMs that don’t design their own drivers (the B&C Mark uses, BMS's models, the lower-efficiency Seas models, etc.) are as a rule not exemplary performers. But there are concentrics designed from the ground up to be concentrics (rather than being adaptations of conventional drivers) from TAD/Pioneer, KEF, Tannoy, etc. that one needn't make excuses about.

--
"In many cases there aren’t two sides unless one side is 'reality' and the other is 'nonsense.'" - Phil Plait
Serious Audio Blog 
Multichannel music (and video) urban loft living room system 
DS-21 is offline  
post #20 of 22 Old 03-16-2014, 09:16 PM
AVS Addicted Member
 
LTD02's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 16,852
Mentioned: 26 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 565 Post(s)
Liked: 1170
better late than never....nice work mark.

Listen. It's All Good.
LTD02 is offline  
post #21 of 22 Old 03-17-2014, 09:26 PM
AVS Special Member
 
basshead81's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Fort Wayne, IN
Posts: 6,432
Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 35 Post(s)
Liked: 1702
any word on the website?
basshead81 is offline  
post #22 of 22 Old 04-26-2014, 04:49 PM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Stereodude's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Detroit Metro Area
Posts: 10,132
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 663 Post(s)
Liked: 632
I enjoyed this one with the master of speakers and subs! cool.gif
Stereodude is offline  
Reply AVS Forum Podcasts



Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off