The more drivers the merrier? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 29 Old 01-14-2020, 03:19 PM - Thread Starter
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The more drivers the merrier?

I'm planning my new HT build, and I've spent hours looking at other builds here in the forums to try to get an idea of what I want. On yy current want-list are Aggressive 1299s for L/C/R, HT -10s for surround and Volt-10 V2s for Atmos, all from DIYSoundgroup.com. I'm waiting for most everything on my list to come back in stock, so that got me looking into other options. For L/C/R, the Titan-615LX (also out of stock) has caught my eye. They're more expensive than the 1299s, but I know that more money doesn't always = better. I understand more now about HT speakers/subs/separates than when I started this process, but my small brain can't get over how more drivers in my L/C/R channels must be the better option. The 1299s have 2 12" Eminence woofers, 2 6.5" Eminence midrange woofers, and 1 Denovo DNA-325 tweeter. The Titans have 1 Eminence made 15" woofer with neodymium magnet, 1 Celestion CDX-1731 compression driver and 1 6.5" Eminence Alpha 6CBMRA midrange. Maybe the Titans are more for music and not so much for movies and games? Any input is appreciated!
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post #2 of 29 Old 01-14-2020, 03:27 PM
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Originally Posted by gldni View Post
I'm planning my new HT build, and I've spent hours looking at other builds here in the forums to try to get an idea of what I want. On yy current want-list are Aggressive 1299s for L/C/R, HT -10s for surround and Volt-10 V2s for Atmos, all from DIYSoundgroup.com. I'm waiting for most everything on my list to come back in stock, so that got me looking into other options. For L/C/R, the Titan-615LX (also out of stock) has caught my eye. They're more expensive than the 1299s, but I know that more money doesn't always = better. I understand more now about HT speakers/subs/separates than when I started this process, but my small brain can't get over how more drivers in my L/C/R channels must be the better option. The 1299s have 2 12" Eminence woofers, 2 6.5" Eminence midrange woofers, and 1 Denovo DNA-325 tweeter. The Titans have 1 Eminence made 15" woofer with neodymium magnet, 1 Celestion CDX-1731 compression driver and 1 6.5" Eminence Alpha 6CBMRA midrange. Maybe the Titans are more for music and not so much for movies and games? Any input is appreciated!
The truth of the matter is the Titan-615LX is actually closer to what you would see in a commercial movie theater, design wise. Big woofer and 2 horns. Both the 1299 and the Titan will work perfectly well in a HT situation though. You could send a message to Erich and ask him what the big differences between the lines are. I can say I have heard no one say anything bad about the Titan's or the 99's
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post #3 of 29 Old 01-14-2020, 06:14 PM
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I haven't heard either so couldn't tell ya.

From what I understand, multiple high frequency drivers playing the same signal is a bad thing. Crossovers prevent overlapping, to prevent comb filtering effects.

For low frequencies the wavelengths are so large that it generally doesn't matter, in fact multiple subwoofers playing the same signal is pretty much ideal.
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post #4 of 29 Old 01-14-2020, 07:25 PM
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Originally Posted by gldni View Post
but my small brain can't get over how more drivers in my L/C/R channels must be the better option.
Buy a book on speaker design; Vance Dickason's is pretty good. An older edition for a few $ secondhand would be fine.
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post #5 of 29 Old 01-15-2020, 07:54 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks, guys! I have the Vance Dickason book on it's way.

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Originally Posted by BassThatHz View Post
I haven't heard either so couldn't tell ya.

From what I understand, multiple high frequency drivers playing the same signal is a bad thing. Crossovers prevent overlapping, to prevent comb filtering effects.

For low frequencies the wavelengths are so large that it generally doesn't matter, in fact multiple subwoofers playing the same signal is pretty much ideal.
I see what you're saying. I've read some posts where people are debating between the 1099 and the 1299, and often it's suggested that if the 1299s will fit, go with them. My room is roughly 3200 cu ft. My head will be 8-10 ft from the screen. Maybe everything I am considering is overkill, but isn't that what part of DIY is all about
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post #6 of 29 Old 01-15-2020, 07:59 AM
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Thanks, guys! I have the Vance Dickason book on it's way.


I see what you're saying. I've read some posts where people are debating between the 1099 and the 1299, and often it's suggested that if the 1299s will fit, go with them. My room is roughly 3200 cu ft. My head will be 8-10 ft from the screen. Maybe everything I am considering is overkill, but isn't that what part of DIY is all about
This is AVS, overkill does not exist here. Just look at the person you just replied to, he has a thread on if its possible to soundproof 160db of bass LMAO.
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post #7 of 29 Old 01-15-2020, 08:35 AM
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Originally Posted by liffie420 View Post
This is AVS, overkill does not exist here. Just look at the person you just replied to, he has a thread on if its possible to soundproof 160db of bass LMAO.


Haha, how far we’ve come.
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post #8 of 29 Old 01-15-2020, 11:26 AM
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The more drivers the merrier?

and

Haha, how far we’ve come

and of course the real question:

How many drivers can the room actually eventually manage . . .

Want more "drivers"?

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post #9 of 29 Old 01-15-2020, 11:34 AM
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Originally Posted by asarose247 View Post
The more drivers the merrier?

and

Haha, how far we’ve come

and of course the real question:

How many drivers can the room actually eventually manage . . .

Want more "drivers"?

https://billfitzmaurice.info/SLA.html
I would be willing to bet if anyone here would know it's @BassThatHz While I am not super familiar with everyone's system here obviously, when it comes to sheer cone area BassThatHz is usually the first to come to mind.
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post #10 of 29 Old 01-15-2020, 12:09 PM
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^^Agreed!^^

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post #11 of 29 Old 01-15-2020, 02:30 PM
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Originally Posted by asarose247 View Post
How many drivers can the room actually eventually manage . . .
The number of drivers is really irrelevant, as it's the max SPL the room can take before it becomes unpleasant to be in. SPL is determined by volume displacement. More drivers just looks more impressive for the unknowledgeable.

However, the OP was interested in why 3/4 + way speakers, some with multiple drivers in each range* and just shoving in a whole bunch of drivers usually isn't the best approach (except at LF) as it will affect polars etc. Line arrays such as the one you linked also have problems, especially with horizontal polars in many designs and comb filtering from long arrays where the time of flight will be enough between the end and centre drivers to add destructively at the LP.


* It's a really large subject and I'm not interested in putting the time in right now.
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post #12 of 29 Old 01-15-2020, 07:12 PM
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Originally Posted by liffie420 View Post
if its possible to soundproof 160db of bass LMAO.

I think 190dB was thrown around in there too, lol.


Edit: Correction, it was 194dB of bass, at the end of BTH's first post. LMFAO, that's guaranteed to be awesome, but when's it going to be 200dB? So close! 2Hz at 200dB might just prove the brown note a reality!
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post #13 of 29 Old 01-18-2020, 08:42 PM
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Originally Posted by liffie420 View Post
when it comes to sheer cone area BassThatHz is usually the first to come to mind.
I know of at least 4 people that have more cone area and/or displacement than I have.

Hahn has like 22 24's (more of both), audiovideoholic has like 14 21's (more displacement), the guy that has 40 SI-18's IB'ed in his door and a 32" sub(HealthNut or something? Again, more of both), and lastly TheEar (presumed dead though...)
There maybe a few others that are in that realm of displacement/cone-area that I've missed, the list is constantly changing.

My >30hz bass is well-solved.
I only worry about bottoming out on infrasonics at high-volumes (the FP's are more-than capable of bottoming all of my drivers at any given moment, if I let them, which I try super hard not to...)
It's not like I can just go out and buy more LMS-18's or SAB-24's. I've been told those are unobtainium.

That said I've partially fried 3 of the 6 UM-15's in my LCR's, because I've given them each 10x their rated-power on several occasions. What is a basshead supposed to do?
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post #14 of 29 Old 01-19-2020, 08:04 AM
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Lol, you're still the legend on avsforum.com with statements like "That said I've partially fried 3 of the 6 UM-15's in my LCR's, because I've given them each 10x their rated-power on several occasions. What is a basshead supposed to do?" 
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Haha, 3 of the 6 15” in my LCR, good lord.
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post #16 of 29 Old 01-19-2020, 07:19 PM
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With 6 18"s and 11kw driving them.Two QSC RMX4050HD and two RMX2450. Two ea are in 20 cu ft boxes tuned to 10hz. Two of those, and there are two 12Cu ft enclosures tuned to 15HZ. I guess that puts me in the junior league around here.
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post #17 of 29 Old 01-19-2020, 11:56 PM
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In 4 weeks I am going withTower line array 16 woofers drivers and equal numbers of tweeters per l,c,r,ls,rs for a total of 80 drivers plus concrete ib and ib subs ?Hopefully its loud and i can avoid Tower line array of 32 drivers per l c r ls rs for a total of 160 drivers ?

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Pending buy quality components for some new point source mains new 4k lg hu70la projector 1240 cubic foot ib for 16 fi car audio ib318 v2 subwoofers 4 nx3000 dsp
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post #18 of 29 Old 01-20-2020, 03:46 AM
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In 4 weeks I am going withTower line array 16 woofers drivers and equal numbers of tweeters per l,c,r,ls,rs for a total of 80 drivers plus concrete ib and ib subs ?Hopefully its loud and i can avoid Tower line array of 32 drivers per l c r ls rs for a total of 160 drivers ?
Have you actually heard any line arrays, especially of the type you're considering? They are not everyone's cup of tea. My first couple of designs were LAs and knowing what I do now, I'd never go back to them. Others love then but they make everything sound artificially large to me, and very "impressive". Initially at least.
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post #19 of 29 Old 01-20-2020, 08:23 AM
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In 4 weeks I am going withTower line array 16 woofers drivers and equal numbers of tweeters per l,c,r,ls,rs for a total of 80 drivers plus concrete ib and ib subs ?Hopefully its loud and i can avoid Tower line array of 32 drivers per l c r ls rs for a total of 160 drivers ?
I built a pair of line arrays for garage use--so it would sound the same when standing or sitting while doing garage work stuff. It works well for that.
I wanted something thaq had high SPL output without gross distortion. It works well for that (111 dB at 8 meters (25 feet) at 200 watts per channel)
I wanted no "horn burn" or if I was really close to the speaker, the increased SPL won't blow my ear holes--it works very, very well for that.
I wanted no floor bounce/ceilign bounce with less than 10 degrees of vertical dispersion--it works well for that.

However, just as in all things there are rules, trade offs and quirks of the design. As A9X stated, it has a HUGE soundfield--because the lines are 6 feet tall with 12 woofers, 20 mids and 48 tweeters per side, it goes with the territory. Since it is for "garage sound" or working or having tunes at summer BBQs, my demands were different. The BIG sound is great for drinking a few brews, having fun and the very broad horizontal dispersion helps for outdoor parties. It is earrie to listen at 12 feet then start walking forward until yo place yor ear n the tweeter line and te SPL: roughly remains the same. Once you get past 12 feet, it starts to roll off slowly and the turns "normal" (for the most part) at around 25 feet--infinity does not equal 6 feet tall so it reverts back to a point source. The issue is everything sounds larger than life, fun with things that are supposed to sound huge but not so much with a solo singer. Not exactly pin point accurate either, the acoustic laws come into play and center-to-center distance IS a real problm. I was able to cram 1/2" tweeters tightly together 6 feet high so the highs did not start killing themselves until over 10 KHz. I bumped up the EQ at 16 KHz +6dB to get it even. Had do do som cutting of the midrange to smooth it out--you need EQ.

I used 5 inch woofers, 3 inch mids and 1/2" tweeters as a 3-way crossed at 350 Hz and 5,750 Hz and it does work with EQ. Just be aware if sound accuracy is what yo seek, probably not the direction to go. They do look cool, they are quite loud with high peak SPL ability, work well sitting down or standing up and other peculiar things they do. Just know that going in, the line array has been around since the 1950's but it took until the 1990's before they could get it to work as a full range system. AS you will soon find out, the high frequencies, beaming/lobing and all sorts of nastiness await you! I'm glad I built them for garage use--they are seriously fun and very bizarre looking to most people.

If you decide to go forward with your array build, it would be best to learn how they work, what they do, the problems they have and learn the center-to-center distance calculations like a chant. Roughly, you want to pack as many drivers as you can--get their frames to basically touch and trim the frames if you have to. This is critical for the tweeter line, get "truncated" tweeters that have the toottoms/tops cut off so you can pack them in tighter. Cram it! If you can, attempt to get tweeters shorter than 1.35" center-to-center or really small tweeters. The smaller they are, the higher up in frequency they can go until they quite coupling. If you think you can "match" the numbers of tweeters to the numbers of mid-woofers--stop right now, step away from the design and run away. If your tweeters are ribbons/AMTs that are the same size/height as the midwoofers, it is possible but typically you want to pack the line as tightly as possible. Then take each line and CRAM it right next to each other again--pack them tight. The only driver that was not packed as tight as I could get it was the 5 inch woofers, they have a 6 inch center-to-center distance because they cross at 350 Hz. The 3 inch mids are basically touching frames so the bezel was very weak. I then braced it heavily to strengthen the bezel. Only took me 3 times until I had something to work with that EQ could solve for the most part.

Since I built them, measured them, rebuilt them and EQ'd the things to work--I know where the bodies are buried and their glaws. Plenty of people comment on them, they are hard to miss sitting on top of subwoofers for an almost 8 foot tall stack. People ask me if I can "help them" build a pair. No, no I won't! I did drag the monsters into the house when my wife was out of town for a few days--they sounded better in my living room than my garage. They had that huge sound, very efficient but did not give accurate sound reporoduction like point source. As I told many people, they are the correct design for my needs in my garage but they are not a one size fits all speaker design. If you think about it, line arrays used for world tours are used because they are easy to hang, easy to pack, ship and move around--a "xcalable" system if you will. What they don't do is provide perfect sound quality to the audience in all venues--but it givess good sound if setup right at most venues--why they are used. The biggest point source speaker I know of is the Danley Sound Labs Jericho custom built. The 10 foot tall by 4 foot wide horn weighs 2,000 pounds each but will produce SPLs in the high 150+ dB range. Not exactly something that you could carry around on a world tour as they are made for football and soccer stadiums. Line arrays make sense on world tours as they can easily be adjusted to fit the venue--but they are not there because of their stellar sound quality.

I'm not a line array hater, I built a pair and will use them in my garage until they either explode or I'm dead (my wife will use them as my coffin) If you have a specific need for what they do well, they are a great option. However, if you are chasing after sound accuracy, they won't get you there. Now if you find some 1/4" or 6mm tall tweeters that can be crossed down at 3,000 Hz and handle reasonable power with decent efficiency--let me know! It sure would solve my 10K to 20K treble issue AND my 3,000 to 5,700 Hz midrange issue. I just add EQ for the treble and drink a brew or two to solve it's quirks. Barley and Hops processing works very well in garage sound.

In summation, I'd seriously find out all the science about line arrays before you start piling up boxes of drivers. If you want to meass around with them just to mess around with them--I'd use the Vifa TG9 (I think) 3.5 inch full range, say 25 of them 5 series/5 parallel and EQ them flat along with subwoofers. I think the drivers run like 12 bucks each so a box of 50 is not too insane. Measure the things, use parametric EQ and blend them in with subwoofers. If you fall in love with them, if they meet all your requirements--after that you can think of a tweeter line because woodworking is fun!
It is hard to tell you to go listen to such things, I've never seen a pair of them until I built them. Be ware if you expect flat frequency response out to 20 KHz with passive crossovers--run away now! It won't happen so know that going in.

Good luck!
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post #20 of 29 Old 01-20-2020, 12:58 PM
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^^ Good post 18H.


I'd add two points, one of which you touched on tangentially. First is horizontal lobing; you need to get the drivers C-C distances at <1/4 wavelength for them to appear, acoustically, as a single unit. This is very, very hard to do especially horizontally and if you get the xover point wrong, it's very easy to put the lobe right at or close to the MLP, so centre or adjacent seats could be in a null. This is exactly the problem MTM horizontal centres face, except the lobing is asymmetrical.



The second is comb filtering; with a theoretically floor to ceiling array, the time of flight differences between the drivers at ear level and those at the bottom and top can be quite significant. The sounds arriving from these centre/end drivers will add constructively and destructively at the LP causing the combing. Actually, all the drivers will do this, just those closer to each other will do it at a higher frequency and be less obnoxious. If you truncate the line to minimise this, then the line only becomes an actual line at higher frequencies.


One last point, and a pet hate of mine, is I don't like to series drivers anywhere except LF. The electromechanical properties of the drivers will interact, as they're not identical, and never seem to sound of a whole to me.


Don't let us put you off, rather I'd hope you'd take it as design advice that may help improve your project's final result.
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post #21 of 29 Old 01-21-2020, 12:47 AM
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My movie room is concrete so it looks like a tla will help with what i need for movies?I need high spl low distortion good to ok directivity so that i can understand what my center chan produces.


Movies tv shows 95 percent time watching .
Music i like edm so a large stereo image is ok.
My main goal is a slightly better center chan speaker.




However for piano listening i use an outdoor mtm 2.0 and an ib sub that i use rarely.

Denon 4k avr, diy l c r surround Behringer nx3000 dsp Fi car audio ib318 v2 310 cubic foot concrete ib lg pf 1500 projector.steren projector mount at diy 135 inch screen triple 15 boss build .
Pending buy quality components for some new point source mains new 4k lg hu70la projector 1240 cubic foot ib for 16 fi car audio ib318 v2 subwoofers 4 nx3000 dsp
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Originally Posted by Russell Burrows View Post
My movie room is concrete so it looks like a tla will help with what i need for movies?I need high spl low distortion good to ok directivity so that i can understand what my center chan produces.


Movies tv shows 95 percent time watching .
Music i like edm so a large stereo image is ok.
My main goal is a slightly better center chan speaker.

However for piano listening i use an outdoor mtm 2.0 and an ib sub that i use rarely.
Good information, a few thoughts if I may

To be truthful, I have never heard the 1299 or the Titan so I have to go with theory, personal bias and my inherent laziness with my ponderings--reality always intrudes!

You want clear vocals, very high dynamic range and your room is cement floors and I would assume not perfect acoustics. If it was me, I'd go for the Titan speakers for a few reasons. That mid/high horn/waveguide would be the main reason. I think it crosses at 350 Hz to the horn mid then around 1,900 Hz to the highs so should have great control over the vocal frequencies. Once you put two drivers playing the smae frequencies side-by-side, that narrows the dispersion which can be good or bad depending on use. Now to ponder EDM, need some serious air movement to provide the bass response so it would seem (initially) that having two 12's beats one 15. Well, the 12's have an Xmax of around 3.5 mm but you have two of them VS a single 15 with an Xmax of 12mm. If you have the power, the single 15 will move more liters of air by quite the large margin. Considering both the 199 and Titan are rated the same efficiency, although DIYSG probably under rates the efficiency of the 1299 a touch--the specs put them at a dead heat.

Now to my laziness factor--the Titan would be much, much easier to build and considering it is 2 pieces, much easier to move around. You also have greater flexibility with the Titans because the bass box can be many different shapes to fit your needs. Make the L/R a certain hight to be acoustically correct then (if required) you can make the center bass box a different size depending on your configuration. Want to make the Titan a "horizontal" center? Two pices allow laying the bass box on it's side and placing the 18" H horn secion on top. If you want to raise/lower the horns, that is much easier than raising the entire speaker. I love the Titan for flexibility for screens or TV screens etc., a factor in it's favor.

Then there is the dark horse, the AVS DIY afliction that is only talked about quietly in the shadows--the MOAR disease. If you just have to have more--you can always add a second 15" bass box, modify the crossover and configure it as a "Titan 630 XL--because you can. Having SIX 15" PA woofers that can stroke an inch linear should provide any chest slam you desire even on cement floors. Sure, three 15's for your LCR should do it for most sane people but most people would doubt your sanity by building them in the first place--embrace the lunacy.

The Titan does cost more but--when calculating total cost, complexity of build and time spent I'd say the difference would be about par between the two. The 1299 and Titan both use the same sealed back 6.5 inch midranges, the 1299 uses two of them while the Titan uses only one but horn loads it to boos tefficiency. I have not heard either of them but considering they use the same mid drivers, I can ASSume their sound would be "related". I think they both now use Celestion compression drivers so the family resemblence continues so a tough call by using spec sheets about what is "better". That is a personal choice so I can see the battle of the brain cells between the two.

The 1299 absolutely wins if you want a horizontal center that is less than 15 inches tall though--love the 99 series for that.

The Titan would win if you are a bass head, the single 15 will move more air and you have the option for two of them each speaker if that bug bites.

My personal center is the 88 Special, I use TV screens in a living room so I'm not worthy. It does work well, no complaints and no issues but if/when I go full basement mode with cement floors--I might be sniffing around something like the Titan. My inner bass head and ease of build/configure speaks loudly to cover up the hub-bub of all those other voices in my head. Your voice might speak differently so just a few ponderings from an unstable audio guy.

Good luck and I hope your final choice will serve you for many years.
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post #23 of 29 Old 01-21-2020, 11:09 PM
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Tr is a boss miniriser soon to be 4 ib318 v2 subs.18 to 60 hertz are concrete box ib with ib318 v2 subs .


60 to 3000 will be 6 inch poly mid woofers
3000 and up will be soft dome tweeters.


No crossover points in the problematic vocal zone .


No passive crossovers.


Concrete Room has lots of gain in low base.
Just need a slightly better system than my two decades cedar wood boxes with diy drivers from 1997.

Denon 4k avr, diy l c r surround Behringer nx3000 dsp Fi car audio ib318 v2 310 cubic foot concrete ib lg pf 1500 projector.steren projector mount at diy 135 inch screen triple 15 boss build .
Pending buy quality components for some new point source mains new 4k lg hu70la projector 1240 cubic foot ib for 16 fi car audio ib318 v2 subwoofers 4 nx3000 dsp
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A9X-308 View Post
Buy a book on speaker design; Vance Dickason's is pretty good. An older edition for a few $ secondhand would be fine.


The cookbook is good and also great sound stereo speaker manual.

Denon 4k avr, diy l c r surround Behringer nx3000 dsp Fi car audio ib318 v2 310 cubic foot concrete ib lg pf 1500 projector.steren projector mount at diy 135 inch screen triple 15 boss build .
Pending buy quality components for some new point source mains new 4k lg hu70la projector 1240 cubic foot ib for 16 fi car audio ib318 v2 subwoofers 4 nx3000 dsp
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Originally Posted by Russell Burrows View Post
60 to 3000 will be 6 inch poly mid woofers
3000 and up will be soft dome tweeters.


No crossover points in the problematic vocal zone .
You have completely missed the point about lobing. I give up.
Best of luck.

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Originally Posted by 18Hurts View Post
Sure, three 15's for your LCR should do it for most sane people but most people would doubt your sanity by building them in the first place--embrace the lunacy.

The Titan would win if you are a bass head, the single 15 will move more air and you have the option for two of them each speaker if that bug bites.

My inner bass head and ease of build/configure speaks loudly to cover up the hub-bub of all those other voices in my head. Your voice might speak differently so just a few ponderings from an unstable audio guy.
Above is why I love this website! Basshead 4 Life!!!!

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Originally Posted by Russell Burrows View Post
Tr i
60 to 3000 will be 6 inch poly mid woofers
3000 and up will be soft dome tweeters.


No crossover points in the problematic vocal zone .


No passive crossovers.


.
Welcome to the line array crazy train--all aboard!

So there I was, it was about 8 years ago and I had a dozen 5" woofers per side (85dB efficiency) and 48 tweeters per side (90dB efficiency) I was crossing at 4,200 Hz so it should be good. My main concern was that having 5dB more efficient tweeters and having four times as many, conventional math indicates they should be +11dB louder. No problem, had plenty of L-pad resistors to getter done. Those wee little tweets extended past 22 KHz so all is well. So I built the thing, put an L-pad on the tweets and gave it a listen. Hmmmm, I had bass, lower mids, the upper mids were gone and no treble to speak of. I then shorted out the L-pad, had a bit of treble but nothing real to speak of over 10 KHz--my measurements were terrible, the speakers sounded bad and my wife had no problem letting me know I took a ride on the fail whale.

In desperation, I did more reading about line arrays--the upper mids and treble issues are a constant in the design dating back to the 1950's--did more reading. After hundreds of pages of reading, it is math equations with center-to-center distances and coupling being the law that governs how they work. Did the calculations, my measurements agreed with the equations so I was on to something. Yeah, now I can predict failure before starting--a good thing. As A9X stated, you want the center-to-center distance (C2C) to be at a 1/4 octave at the crossover point. If you do the math, that means you need tweeters that have less than a 1/4 inch between them at around 20 KHz. The math being brutal, basically informs you what you are attempting to do is impossible. So, if you are the OCD type--run, run away fast and far!

Since I was stupid and already built the boxes, already had 48 tweeters per side with a 1.35 inch C2C distance--and my wife to remind me how much all that stuff costs--I was in and had to keep fighting. Did some more reading, learned about psycho-acoustics, the precedence effect and how poor human hearing really is. The name of the game is to exploit our hearing weekness, fudge it with EQ and do things like curved arrays (Keele's "broke back" arrays or floor-to-celing arrays and so on. Polish the turd! Looking at what JBL does with their "sticks", they use 2 inch full ranges, subs and EQ to make them work. Faital Pro makes speakers specifically for line arrays, they are 3 inch full ranges and can really hammer it out but EQ is required. IF you put a gun to my head and told me I had to build another pair or two of them, I'd use the Faital Pro 3" Neo full ranges, use 9 of them per box (wired 3 series/3 parallel) and seal off each 3 driver segment of parallel drivers away from each other then wire the segments in series. I would use the 16 ohm drivers so each "box" would be about 2.5 feet or less than a meter tall then put three boxes in parallel for a 6 ohm load--at around 7.5 feet tall or 2.5 meters to fit in most rooms. They will beam and comb filters--but that is what arrays do. At least with rows of 3 inchers, I can cross them at 160 Hz to subwoofers or kick bins and be done with it.

To "fix" my problem, I added twenty 3" full ranges and bumped the crossover at 350 Hz LR and 5700 Hz Bessel filters (passive) The woofers were wired at 6 ohms, the mids at 13 ohms and the tweets at 7 ohms so they would smoothly cross at those points without L-pads. If you do the math, the tweeters were already outside the 1/4 octave rule and my 10 KHz, they had completely decoupled and SPL started falling. Each tweeter by itself made it to 22 KHz flat--but stack 48 of them and their frequency response starts dropping off at 10 KHz--weird how that works. I did put a +6dB boost at 16KHz to get them even but if you use conventional math for point sources, the 16KHz band would run +17dB HOT! It don't, it won't because it is a line array and the domes have decoupled--the way it goes. The good thing is you have huge power handling with 48 tweeters, driving them 4 times harder is not a problem when you have 48 of the things. My 3 inch full ranges even at 13 ohms really belted it out, at around 1.5 KHz the output was screaming so I did an EQ cut to compensate. I pondered building some passive filters in the crossover but by then, my OCD was blunted, kicked around and crushed so EQ is fine. I did try supwer tweeters, they worked but sounded weird--EQ to the rescue. My acoustic problems with the 3 inchers was at around 3KHz and up, my C2C was 3.3 inches. If I went completely anal, I'd look to replace the tweeters with those DAyton 5/8th inch ones that I coupld pack in at 3/4" C2C. I would then cross them at 3 KHz to solve that problem. All I need is 96 of them per side which forces you to ponder "Is the juice worth the squeeze?" They are garage speakers, I can "cheat" a bit with EQ and after a beer or two, I generally don't notice the sins anymore so I passed.

So if you want to build line arrays for fun, education, like the idea of the weird things they do go for it! Personally, I would recommend the Vifa 3.5" TG9 series, the one with the fiberglass cones. Run 25 of them per side, 5 series/5 parallel with the paralleled segments sealed from each other. Leave about 3 inches of space on one side of the bezel if you want to add a tweeter line later. The TG9 when using 25 of them can handle some power, they are quite efficient and at 17 buck each--the total driver cost would be less than 1,000 dollars US. Build them, wire them, EQ them and enjoy... if you want to add tweeter lines, I found some Tang Band 1/2" dome tweeters that can do 4 KHz and have a rising response (good thing with arrays as the higher they go, the boost is good because SPL naturally goes down) They are 0.77 inches in diameter or a 0.8 inch center to center distance. Get around 110 of them to match the Vifa line and wire them 10 series/22 parallel. They cost less than 8 bucks each so mulitiply that by 220 and it gets expensive fast! The other option is the Dayton 5/8ths dome tweeter which allows crossing down at 3 KHz with a steep filter and a 1.375" center to center distance--good to over 10 KHz. They run 9 bucks each and pack in 64 of them (8S/8P) so a bit over 1,000 bucks for the tweeter line each box. Yeah, although $17 full ranges sound reasonable and $9 tweeters are easy--it piles up to 4,000 bucks when you have 89 drivers per box. Are you sure?

Just some ponderings, I lucked out by purchasing boxes of drivers when the price of nedodymium went through the roof and manufacturers were drumping their stocks at 90 percent off. Figured it was a good time to find about line arrays, I did and am glad I built them for the garage. However, I won't do it again because I'm content with their performance--including the beaming, colmb filtering, EQ demands and the space they take up. The thing DIY'ers always do, no matter if it is speakers, dog houses, classic car restoration or old bicycles--if you had to do it again, knowing what you know now...would you do it again? My anser is no, IF I had to do it again--I would use the Vifa full ranges and EQ...if I could of started over I'd of gone with point source for garage sound. Sure, I can change the tweets to the Daytons and cross at 3 KHz--I could add passive notch filters to the mids--I could but I won't. At the end of the day, they are garage speakers and I'm screwed because it is in a garage. Now if I had to have them in my living room for life, I'd be seriously thinking about the Daytons and noth filters--I would! My garage speakers provide sound everywhere when I work on stuff--they also provide the goods for parties and "barley processing" tames the sins of the arrays so I call it good.

IN summation, I offer this--line arrays are not more accurate than point source because they can't--the rules won't let them. So if you are going for acoustic nirvana, run away now! However, if you want something different, something with a huge sound field, something really cool looking--loud and proud--they perform that function well. Very educational, I learned a ton about acoustics, comb filtering, beaming and psycho-acoustics in the 17 moths and three revisions building them. The 1/4 octave rule is sound but it can be pushed to a full cotave--but once beyond that our imperfect human hearing ability will pick up on it. You will learn what EQ can and can't do and gain knowledge of infinite line theory VS point source real world. In reality, there is no infinite line and there is no point source--just flawed concepts of both of them. That is the biggest thing I took away building those things, living proof that human hearing sucks...it is not golden in any way! It proves that math and measuring equipment agree with each other, there is no magic. The biggest things it proves, at least with the local population is that people hear with their eyes. I've been told my arrays are the best sounding speakers or in the top 3 of any speaker system they have heard. Yes, a jazz drummer that has been playing for over 50 years told me they were in the top 3 PA speakers he has ever heard. In a garage... uhhhh.... you need to get out more! When people see a speaker sitting on subs that stands 7 feet 10 inches tall, notice the two dozen woofers, the 40 mids and 96 tweeters all playing at once--the visual swamps their senses and it must sound great! It sounds great because it sounds huge, it sounds great because it has very low distortion, it sounds great because there is no floor/ceiling bounce and it has very wide dispersion--very true. However, the measurements show the problems, the math points out the problems and I KNOW what the problems are, I can hear them. They get more comments and love than alll of my other audio systems combined by far--because they are huge, they sound different, they look cool and very unique. A lady I know loves the things, she calls them "The Compensators" .... the only speakers I have ever owned that women get a kick out of. Who knew? They are the most "fun", sinane speakers I have ever owned and teenagers think they are the ultimate--but they are not.

Last piece of advice, learn about infinite line theory, learn center-to-center spacing of acoustic drivers, learn about comb filtering, lobing, horizontal VS vertical arrays, precedence effect, psychoacoustics and issues with series wiring of drivers. This will allow you to make an educated decision if you want to move forward in your quest. You don't want to be like this guy Steave Meade--He built arrays with 7" woofers and 1" tweeters and completely jacked up the math, did the crossover points wrong, did the tweeter lines wrong (center to center was around 4 inches so) Spent a fortune on the drivers, big bucks on the box and supporting electronics. Yeah, they are huge, they are LOUD but the "sounds good" part is the details. Big sound, high SPL and cool looking only last so long and eventually, that newness fades but sound quality always takes over. Know the theaory, understand the limits and accept the compromises before going in. If the design is wrong, you have to start over even if you throw the most expensive drivers in the world in the box. The array system is more design strict VS what drivers you use. Not hard to get great treble response with low distortion when you might be putting a tenth of a watt into each one max. Even very basic drivers will give you low distortion when driving them at one watt. Since EQ in manditory, you can fix a lot of problems going in. That is the upside, you don't need expensive speaker drivers because quantity helps you there just like it helps with multiple subs. The downside is the design must be correct, it must follow the rules as close as possible and they are a pain to build that way. You can also curve them and there are all sorts of configurations that might help for you, your room, your space and your needs. So, read up on the various types and figure out what design works best for you FIRST.

However, if it is your "only" sound system--I'd stick with point source. Line arrays are like having a crazy date--a lot of fun, very educational and always a good time--but not a good long term solution. At least with audio systems, they won't super glue body parts because of the other audio system... you have that bonus! They do make a great "Speaker B" on the old receivers--just make sure Speaker A is selected for sound quality. Good luck and enjoy the read!
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post #28 of 29 Old 01-22-2020, 03:39 PM
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Hmmm so 16 speaker towers are out and 8 speaker towers are out .Going to try 4 speaker towers just to experiment as the speakers were cheap.


Then i guess its save up for quality components to do point source boxes.
Thanks everyone for the tips.

Denon 4k avr, diy l c r surround Behringer nx3000 dsp Fi car audio ib318 v2 310 cubic foot concrete ib lg pf 1500 projector.steren projector mount at diy 135 inch screen triple 15 boss build .
Pending buy quality components for some new point source mains new 4k lg hu70la projector 1240 cubic foot ib for 16 fi car audio ib318 v2 subwoofers 4 nx3000 dsp
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post #29 of 29 Old 01-23-2020, 07:58 AM
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18hurts, excellent post! Do you have pics of your line arrays or did I miss them in a previous post?

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