Another Stentorian Build - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 32 Old 01-24-2013, 07:38 PM - Thread Starter
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The wife drug me out to watch a movie a few weeks ago. Generally I would say no, but I had just finished a subwoofer rebuild(dayton 15 HO sealed) and wanted to compare the home theater to the big boys sound system. This made me come to a conclusion: my polk csi3 center channel is lacking. Even though it's a decent center, it just doesn't have that "large" sound to it.

I've also been wanting new fronts to replace a set of monitor 40's that I bought a while back and originally intended to use as rears. So...I went searching and ended up deciding on building my own set. The prices for pre-built towers and center that I'd be happy with(and wouldn't want to replace in 6 months) were 1500+.

The stentorians were probably the 4th or 5th build that I heavily researched, but I seemed to like almost everything about them. Even though my wife is a sound lover, I'd still have to convince her that building a 43" wide and 15" deep center was in our best interest wink.gif. 2 days later I had 2 4x8 sheets of mdf in the garage.

Figured I'd get her to take some pictures and show you guys how it's going. I have limited time to work on these, but should be done in about a week or so. I'll keep this thread updated if there's any interest.

About to go eat dinner, but will post some current pictures tonight!
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post #2 of 32 Old 01-25-2013, 01:10 AM - Thread Starter
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Alright, here are some pretty current pictures. Basically at this point I have the cabinets cut and mostly glued, circles routed and cut, the center mostly sanded ect ect. I'm doing a 3/4" roundover(pretty big) on the front of these and a 3/8 on the rest of the edges. Drivers will all be flush mounted and the crossover will go into the recess that you see on one of the pictures. The recess on the center will be in the middle of the speaker, while on the left and rights it will be on the top. I just got the xover components today and cut and painted some peg board to mount them on. I also ordered some spikes and will be building feet for these even though I haven't quite come up with a good design for them.

My impressions so far: building 3 big speakers at once with 7 drivers in each is more work than one might expect, very excited about the crossovers, so far I'm loving the size of these and those little aura woofers have great build quality for $9 woofers - as does the tweeter. Oh and it'll be one HUGE center!! I'm excited.

The pictures are in no specific order and I have some earlier ones on my phone that I might post later.

If anyone has built these before, how was the sq in a stereo and/or HT application?











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post #3 of 32 Old 01-25-2013, 01:12 AM - Thread Starter
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FYI - Just tried to post some pictures, but the site said my post had to be approved...
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post #4 of 32 Old 01-25-2013, 03:43 AM
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Looking good. I see the pics just fine. Looking forward to the finished product and your listening impressions.
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post #5 of 32 Old 01-25-2013, 06:24 AM
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Based off of who designed those speakers I think you will be happy with them.

Pure bred Dobermann in the picture with you?

James
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post #6 of 32 Old 01-26-2013, 11:15 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks. And, yes that's Bailey my dobie pup smile.gif - he always seems to have the need to help with EVERYTHING.

Haven't had a chance to really work on these the last day or so, right now I just started putting together the crossovers.

Since I don't have any updated pictures of the actual build, I figured I'd post some of my previous build - a 15" dayton ho sub in a 3cu ft sealed box.








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post #7 of 32 Old 01-26-2013, 11:46 AM
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Looking forward to your progress reports.

Do not forget to get Bailey some training. I just had to let go of my Dobermann about a year and a half ago. Still think of that guy every day. No better breed in my book.

James
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post #8 of 32 Old 01-27-2013, 01:55 PM
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Another Stentorian build, excellent.

I have all the parts for a pair of Stentorians in my basement waiting for some other projects to get finished first. Can't wait to see what you are planning to do.

Chris

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post #9 of 32 Old 01-27-2013, 02:29 PM - Thread Starter
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James - Sorry to hear about your dobie. Even though ours is just about a year old, I'm already worried about what I'll do without him 10 years down the road frown.gif. Bailey is the easiest dog I've ever had to train.

Chris - Thanks. When you decide to start on your build I'll definitely be watching!


Yesterday I got a little bit of time into these. I finished routing out the holes for the left and right and put together the crossovers. The first crossover took me almost an hour, the second two took no more than 10 minutes each. I'm pretty happy with how they came out, especially taking into account the fact that they'll be in a recess and you won't really see them.

I also did a mock up with all the components for one speaker to make sure all is good. Even without a cabinet, these things get loud! The highs are a little more than what I'm used to , but I'm sure part of that was the fact that I just had a pile of speakers laying on the floor. All wired up they read a little under 5 ohms.

In the picture below, the l/r don't actually have the baffles glued on or sanded. They're just being held in place with 1 clamp as I couldn't wait to see what they would look like.


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post #10 of 32 Old 01-27-2013, 02:33 PM - Thread Starter
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Also - as part of my second and final order with parts express I got some finishing items. ie - grill cloth, grill guides and 2 sets of spikes.

I was planning on building some sort of feet or a base for the left and right. Any creative ideas on an aesthetic way to do this?
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post #11 of 32 Old 01-28-2013, 12:16 AM - Thread Starter
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Just for laughs, here is a comparison of the stentorian center vs my old csi3. I just sold the csi3 today and it's shipping out tomorrow so wanted to have a picture as a reminder smile.gif.

Got the edges rounded over on the center and the left and rights mostly sanded today. I'll try to do the roundovers on the other two tomorrow and go over all three with some 320 grit to prep for primer! If all goes well the build should be done by friday - which includes paint, feet, and grills!



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post #12 of 32 Old 01-28-2013, 12:22 PM
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Look for any posts (builds) by passinginterest. He is one hell of a craftsman and some of his builds may have some feet you can get an indea from. Also, maybe Chris will pop back in since he is a very good builder to (and has all ready posted here).

I just had tiptoes installed in mine when they were built, nothing fancy.

James
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post #13 of 32 Old 01-28-2013, 01:38 PM
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Looking good so far!

I am interested in building these also but was wondering if they would be just OK or a really great speaker for my HT..

Did you have the opportunity to listen to a set of these before deciding to build these?
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post #14 of 32 Old 01-30-2013, 12:55 AM - Thread Starter
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Swatkins - Honestly that's a question I've been asking myself from the day I started this build. I have yet to see(hear, read) anyone say anything bad about these. I figured I'd just take the plunge and build them anyway. If you'd be in north idaho I'd gladly offer a listen but I don't think that's the case.

Here are a few more pictures. I finally got them all put together, sanded and primed. They'll get another sanding with 320, another coat of primer, more 320, satin black paint, more 320 and more satin black. At that point I'll decide if I should put a layer of clear satin poly on them or just leave them as is. Any finishing tips are VERY welcomed!

I decided to not be creative and just do a simple base for these with spikes in the corners. It's just a rectangle with a 3/4" radius roundover.

Also, If anyone was wondering the total cost for the three will probably end up right above $500. $390 of that is from parts express and the other $120 or so at the hardware store.







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post #15 of 32 Old 01-30-2013, 07:37 AM
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I wish I could take a trip right now smile.gif The wife has grounded me until I finish our new house.. It's only taken me 3 years so far, but the end is in sight as I only have to finish building the cabinets in the main house..

My Theatre is to the stage where I need to figure out the sound system and where I can place speakers...I have time and the space to do almost anything so I am exploring all options..

I really like the looks and price of these speakers so they are my front runners now....

What are you planing to use for surrounds?

Steve
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post #16 of 32 Old 01-30-2013, 08:46 AM
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domanskipaul,

Some very nice images, especially the well executed use of depth of field in the baffle close ups,...second to last pic in post #2.

I wish everyone accompanied their efforts with such nice images. Using a more natural light, not the nasty harshness of a direct flash indoors, as is often the case with so many contributions. Sure, oftentimes a flash is needed in low light situations, and documenting something is more important than the aesthetic component of the image. Anyway, some of those were refreshingly nice.

Thanks for sharing, and good luck moving forward.

------------------------------------
Flat, Deep, Clean, Linear, and Loud
------------------------------------
Active 16.8kw, 7.3 system
(3)Seaton Cat12C up front, (4)QSC K8 sides/rears
(2)Seaton SubM-HP, (4)18" IB
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post #17 of 32 Old 01-31-2013, 03:06 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the comment on pictures!

As far as surrounds go, I'm not sure yet, I will probably end up building something eventually. For now, I have a spare set of polk monitor 40's that I don't mind and a set of little pioneer bookshelf speakers. Neither of which are very fancy, but seem to do fine as surrounds. The wife wants me to use the little pioneer bookshelf speakers because of the curved cabinet and smaller size.

Anyhow, as far as the speakers go, they're all ready for their final coats of paint and so far I'm super happy with them. I'll update in a few days as to the sound.

On another topic, my wife and I watch maybe 10 hours of tv per month, but we have movie nights at least 3 times per week. Somehow this speaker building motivated her to do a minor remodel of the living room which turned into getting rid of the tv and getting a projector:D. My budget for this was low. I have never owned a projector and wanted to make sure it was something that could work for us. After doing a decent amount of research and taking into account the room, I ended up deciding on a low cost benq w710 short throw projector and a simple motorized 100" screen.

I'll make sure to post pictures in the coming days, but with the added project, things may move even slower.
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post #18 of 32 Old 01-31-2013, 04:05 PM
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Ah, another convert smile.gif
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post #19 of 32 Old 01-31-2013, 04:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by domanskipaul View Post

On another topic, my wife and I watch maybe 10 hours of tv per month, but we have movie nights at least 3 times per week. Somehow this speaker building motivated her to do a minor remodel of the living room which turned into getting rid of the tv and getting a projector:D. My budget for this was low. I have never owned a projector and wanted to make sure it was something that could work for us. After doing a decent amount of research and taking into account the room, I ended up deciding on a low cost benq w710 short throw projector and a simple motorized 100" screen.

I'll make sure to post pictures in the coming days, but with the added project, things may move even slower.

A 100" at only 720p may leave something to be desired, especially if the TV you're getting rid of is 1080p, and you're watching BluRay. If it's all Netflix, or DVD, then 720p should be just fine.
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post #20 of 32 Old 01-31-2013, 05:35 PM - Thread Starter
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I don't doubt I'd probably be happier with a $1500-$2000 1080p projector, but would I really be 3x-4x happier? I did take quite a few factors into account when making the choice - including the fact that 85-90% of the content on our htpc is ripped as 720p mkv files. I was actually pretty close to getting a used optoma HD20 for $550 locally but after researching the number of problems that people have had with dead pixels on that and the HD66 I decided against it.

Depending on how we end up liking this projector in the next 1-2 years, I might end up buying something better. Either way we're both pretty excited for the change!
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post #21 of 32 Old 02-04-2013, 02:40 PM - Thread Starter
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Alright I'm finally just about done with these projects. Now it's just some cable clean up and speaker grills. Here are some pictures of the finished speakers.

I am extremely pleased with the sound of these! It took quite a while to build them, demanded a lot of soldering and sanding, but for $500 and some time, these sound amazing!

... for never having a projector before, I am very pleased with the benq w710st. It may not be 1080, but with a good quality source it looks great for a $500 projector. The standard setting was almost too bright, so we're leaving it in eco for now.




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post #22 of 32 Old 02-04-2013, 05:07 PM
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Those look really good.. Great finish! Please explain the finishing process you used...
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post #23 of 32 Old 02-04-2013, 10:11 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks!
The finish actually looks better in person. The smudges you see there are actually furniture polish that my wife used on them and didn't completely rub out.

My process was pretty simple. After everything was sanded with 120 and 320, I rolled on primer. I went against the advice that many people give about spreading glue or filler on the edges, but made sure to sand all the edges down and get a good coat of primer on them. Then the cabinets got another hand sanding with some more 320. I ended up doing two coats of primer due to the fact that I ended up with some bare spots after the first sanding. At this point I rolled on a coat of satin black and gave it a quick sanding to get rid of any orange peel. The final coat was done with my hvlp. I decided to not put a top coat of satin poly on there(at least not until the paint fully cures). All the paint and primer I used was oil based and picked up at my local hardware store.

I CAN'T get over how good these sound for the price of the components! Anyone in my area(Coeur D'Alene, Idaho) who's thinking about building these can come by to have a listen.
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post #24 of 32 Old 02-05-2013, 09:17 AM
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Congrats on your speakers and new projector. I hope you enjoy them for some time to come.

James
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post #25 of 32 Old 02-05-2013, 02:39 PM
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post #26 of 32 Old 02-05-2013, 03:03 PM
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Excellent work, they look great.
Quote:
Originally Posted by domanskipaul View Post

Now it's just some cable clean up and speaker grills.

Seems like a shame to cover them with a grill.

Chris

"It hurts to admit when you make mistakes - but when they are big enough, the pain only lasts a second."
--Despair, Inc. "Regret"

My AviaTrix TM Build
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post #27 of 32 Old 02-05-2013, 04:51 PM
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Great looking build, what woofers and tweeters did you buy? Didn't see that

Also that sub looks very reasonably sized, do you have a link to plans for it?
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post #28 of 32 Old 02-05-2013, 06:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by domanskipaul View Post

Alright I'm finally just about done with these projects. Now it's just some cable clean up and speaker grills. Here are some pictures of the finished speakers.

I am extremely pleased with the sound of these! It took quite a while to build them, demanded a lot of soldering and sanding, but for $500 and some time, these sound amazing!

... for never having a projector before, I am very pleased with the benq w710st. It may not be 1080, but with a good quality source it looks great for a $500 projector. The standard setting was almost too bright, so we're leaving it in eco for now.





Awsome job! I love the pic with LCR all in one shot. They just look freakin sweet!
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post #29 of 32 Old 02-05-2013, 07:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Parasocks View Post

Great looking build, what woofers and tweeters did you buy? Didn't see that

Also that sub looks very reasonably sized, do you have a link to plans for it?

Pretty much everything about the speakers can be found below.

http://speakerdesignworks.com/NS6project_1.html

James
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post #30 of 32 Old 02-05-2013, 08:13 PM - Thread Starter
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[/quote]
Quote:
Originally Posted by BeerParty View Post

Seems like a shame to cover them with a grill.


That's what I'm thinking too. Some speakers just don't look good with grills off, but these I actually really like.
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