Comparison - F20 ~ Mini Dev ~ Dual JBL Dev ~ PA460 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 33 Old 04-07-2020, 03:29 PM - Thread Starter
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I have to do a full breakdown of my theater and it’️s going to take a bit of time to do including a new amp rack and paint for all my DIY boxes AND I just finished a new build so I figured “what better time to do a full on comparison”.



Here is how I will set all this up. I need all of you to help me / tell me what tests you want run. Now, I still need to setup another amp before I can start and that might take me a little bit (an hour or a day) so this will give some time for you to help me through what sweeps you want. BTW, I have to take these out the back door to my garage so all these boxes WILL AT SOMETIME BE OUTSIDE, wink.

All subs will be measured in pairs because I have two F20 ported through my left wall setup as a pair ( see black grille in photo ) so if you really need a single sub sweep let me know.

Mains being used - HTM12s on Yamaha Rxa2060 160 watts ran through YAPO xo at 80hz unless specified.

MBMs - PA460 8 ohm each 4cuft ported at 42hz - high pass xo at 40hz on inuke 1000dsp stereo 160 watts each.

Mini Narrow Dev - PA460 8 ohm each high pass xo at 20hz on inuke 3000dsp stereo 440 wats &#226;€”> limited to 300 watts each <&#226;€” @redfive

@lilmike F20 THT - Dayton 390HF 4 ohm each high pass at 20hz on crown 1502 stereo 525 watts each

Dual JBL Dev - 2 JBL 1204 $30 subs high pass at 19hz run at 2 ohms each box run on inuke 1000dsp stereo 530 watts each. Redfive and @a77cj7

Side note: I will test the Mini Dev against the ported as a MBM (above 40hz) and maybe raise the main xo up to 120hz. This should give a fair comparison because they use the same driver.

All raw sweep will be run from my computer to my minidsp 2x4 straight to the amp channel. All music / movies will be played through the avr ( Pandora / iTunes streaming) and sub channel 1 and sub 2 because this is what I always listen to / watch so I don&#226;€&#x2122;&#xfe0f;t want to change what I&#226;€&#x2122;&#xfe0f;m used to. Time alignment will be corrected in the minidsp and double checked through YAPO, eq will also be corrected flat and level matched THEN I will add a little to my taste for each sub. I will take photos of the minidsp setting too. All the normal stuff will be measured too. All measuremt will be from the MLP only and I&#226;€&#x2122;&#xfe0f;ll be giving impressions too, just keep in mind I&#226;€&#x2122;&#xfe0f;m still an amateur so forgive some of my explanations but I do know what my ears want (hence my avatar name). I&#226;€&#x2122;&#xfe0f;ll stop here for now, I&#226;€&#x2122;&#xfe0f;ll explain as I go with photos.

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post #2 of 33 Old 04-07-2020, 03:44 PM
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post #3 of 33 Old 04-07-2020, 03:56 PM
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What is the single sub enclosure under the center HTM-12 ?
I think that's the only one I don't recognize.
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post #4 of 33 Old 04-07-2020, 05:05 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by tk123 View Post
What is the single sub enclosure under the center HTM-12 ?
I think that's the only one I don't recognize.

Three matching MBMs. Two are for the subwoofer test. LCR
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post #5 of 33 Old 04-07-2020, 05:34 PM
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Three matching MBMs. Two are for the subwoofer test. LCR
Oh. Ok. Just looks different without paint.

Where is the F20 ?
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post #6 of 33 Old 04-07-2020, 05:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tk123 View Post
Oh. Ok. Just looks different without paint.

Where is the F20 ?

See here:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Audiophile75 View Post
All subs will be measured in pairs because I have two F20 ported through my left wall setup as a pair ( see black grille in photo ) so if you really need a single sub sweep let me know.
Chris
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post #7 of 33 Old 04-07-2020, 05:47 PM
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Ohhhhh damn. Ok. I see. Sorry
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post #8 of 33 Old 04-07-2020, 06:09 PM
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Full blown compression sweeps would be awesome for comparison sake, but you'll either loose your hearing or damage the subs or house. Max spl on some of those cabs at 100hz would be painful.
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post #9 of 33 Old 04-07-2020, 06:35 PM - Thread Starter
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So, I have NOT got my mic out yet. I decided to just play some music in my sweet spot. Here is what level matching by ear gets. Keep in mind the PA is on a 40hz xo.



Initial thoughts, (no eq, no REW yet)....

The F20s wins hands down. It just does everything. Midbass kicks and low frequencies are no problem. I knew they were my favorite for a reason. And can shake a house easily, they are no joke for just 15s but the boxes are bigger.

The dual dev is really not far behind but it does lack the midbass, but not much. The low end is just a tad better then the F20. This could be a good full range budget build if you already had good midbass in your mains.

The Mini PA Dev is a midbass monster AND it can go low but you will need six or more of these in a room to compare to the duals or the F20 on the low end but they would crush you in midbass by then.

The pa although crossed and less efficient is not far behind... in 4th place lol. I actually was a bit shocked with this because it sounded fuller with less midbass than the mini. This would be a better main speaker down to 40hz rather than a sub, very suttle and smooth.

Sooooo, if I run both Devs together (all four) they COMPARE equally with the F20s almost to a perfect match but, if I add the PA to the dual it does not compare. The horns no matter what has a IN YOUR FACE sound signature to it almost like it gives you feeling even at a low level.

That is all for now, EQ and REW tomorrow.
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post #10 of 33 Old 04-07-2020, 07:00 PM
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FLHs have something that can't be captured with measurements. My favorite sound, but you pay the price with the big boxes. The F20s are also a cheap fairly easy build too. The lack of extension into the teens really seemed to scare people away from that design. For 20-100hz it's tough to beat if you don't mind the size.
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post #11 of 33 Old 04-07-2020, 07:35 PM
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4th order alignments like the F20 and the V3 are awesome. The front quarter wave resonator and the sealed rear chamber help keep excursion in check and I would assume driver motion more linear in general. The problem is size if you want to dig in the teens well...

This is the way...
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post #12 of 33 Old 04-07-2020, 07:39 PM
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Yeah, the F20s are benefiting here because they are not shown in the pictures. The size isn't V3 territory, but they are still bigger than anything else in that picture.
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post #13 of 33 Old 04-07-2020, 07:51 PM
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Didn't see it mentioned but I assume you will be using the same subwoofer position when testing each individual pair?
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post #14 of 33 Old 04-07-2020, 08:24 PM - Thread Starter
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Didn't see it mentioned but I assume you will be using the same subwoofer position when testing each individual pair?

What you see is what you get in the photo. Not entirely fair, I get it, but I cannot move my F20s anyways.
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post #15 of 33 Old 04-07-2020, 08:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Yeah, the F20s are benefiting here because they are not shown in the pictures. The size isn't V3 territory, but they are still bigger than anything else in that picture.



My wife wants her storage room back. No, she actually didn’t say that, she is pretty awesome to let me do all this really.

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post #16 of 33 Old 04-07-2020, 08:43 PM
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The formula for the loudest design is no secret.

The driver that has the most: surface area, power handling, efficiency, excursion.
The box that is: the biggest, and most-efficient design (horn > ported > sealed).
All else being equal: the system driven with the most wattage will win.

The biggest driver = advantage
The highest wattage driver = advantage
The highest efficiency driver = advantage
The highest excursion driver = advantage
The biggest box = advantage
The most efficient box = advantage
Driven with the most watts = advantage

The one with the most accumulative advantages will win, more or less...

That said, those are some wildly varying wattages, box sizes, and box types you have there. But the above still holds true.

The characteristics of different drivers and box types are well-known at this point, i.e. databass and other such.

As for the testing procedure itself:

Keep in mind that most 1/8 or 1/4" mic max-out at around 130db, so you'll probably have to test at 10m to avoid mic clipping/mic distortion. In fact most start distorting at around 120db and up.

If measuring in a room, the low end will have some room-gain, and there will be room-nulls based on positioning (distance from driver to wall(s), driver to mic, wall(s) to mic. etc). Measuring outside well-away from walls is best, with the mic placed on the groundplane (i.e. databass style)

I would recommend at least two sets of comparisons: one where they are all driven with the same wattage (the highest wattage of the weakest box design); and another with no holds barred.

Just keep in mind that the chance of your drivers surviving these maximum tests are low.
I mean if anything is gonna blow, it's gonna be during a maximum stress test; which is pretty much what this will be.
But if you have the spare cash on hand to replace whatever dies, then go for it I guess.
It's always fun to spend other peoples money, just ask any wife/girlfriend. (and on that note: your taxes and child support is now overdue, so pay up or go to jail/fined/repo'ed/frozen-bank/revoked-license/all-the-above. )

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post #17 of 33 Old 04-07-2020, 10:01 PM
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What you see is what you get in the photo. Not entirely fair, I get it, but I cannot move my F20s anyways.
I'd at least try to position the other three pairs in the same spot when you compare them like on the floor at the front side corners. Otherwise you have different loading, boundary interactions and excite different room modes, might as well be comparing the same sub with different room placements.
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post #18 of 33 Old 04-07-2020, 10:29 PM - Thread Starter
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The formula for the loudest design is no secret.

The one with the most accumulative advantages will win, more or less...

The characteristics of different drivers and box types are well-known at this point, i.e. databass and other such.

As for the testing procedure itself:
I would recommend at least two sets of comparisons: one where they are all driven with the same wattage (the highest wattage of the weakest box design); and another with no holds barred.
You have to remember that the Devs have not been around long, as a matter of fact I might be the only one to have built the Dual JBL Dev. This is just my way of giving back to all of you, And seeing that I have all four types setup and easily comparable I felt like this would be a great thing to do.
BTW I would have done it anyways for self satisfaction of knowing / hearing for myself.

As far as the the wattage race goes for testing I’m sure I can arrange all the drivers to push 300w each on my 3000dsp. Thanks for that.

Oh and I’m not after spl, my MV is locked at -5db. But, I will double my subwoofer locations ( 3 positions to 6 positions ) and not decrease in spl of what I already have, after my remodel.
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post #19 of 33 Old 04-08-2020, 03:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Audiophile75 View Post
So, I have NOT got my mic out yet. I decided to just play some music in my sweet spot. Here is what level matching by ear gets. Keep in mind the PA is on a 40hz xo.



Initial thoughts, (no eq, no REW yet)....

The F20s wins hands down. It just does everything. Midbass kicks and low frequencies are no problem. I knew they were my favorite for a reason. And can shake a house easily, they are no joke for just 15s but the boxes are bigger.

The dual dev is really not far behind but it does lack the midbass, but not much. The low end is just a tad better then the F20. This could be a good full range budget build if you already had good midbass in your mains.

The Mini PA Dev is a midbass monster AND it can go low but you will need six or more of these in a room to compare to the duals or the F20 on the low end but they would crush you in midbass by then.

The pa although crossed and less efficient is not far behind... in 4th place lol. I actually was a bit shocked with this because it sounded fuller with less midbass than the mini. This would be a better main speaker down to 40hz rather than a sub, very suttle and smooth.

Sooooo, if I run both Devs together (all four) they COMPARE equally with the F20s almost to a perfect match but, if I add the PA to the dual it does not compare. The horns no matter what has a IN YOUR FACE sound signature to it almost like it gives you feeling even at a low level.

That is all for now, EQ and REW tomorrow.
F20 is good at midbass same as DEVs are?
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post #20 of 33 Old 04-08-2020, 03:57 PM - Thread Starter
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F20 is good at midbass same as DEVs are?

F20 is good all the way through, might even keep them now. Dual JBL is good down low, pa mini is good up high. They both CAN PLAY the other but not great. Together the Devs equal (?) the F20s. ALTHOUGH, if you compare them to a DR the Devs still win even by them self’s.
The Dev platform is pretty cool for being able to throw any dev together and play 20-100hz. One might sound low and one high but you DO NOT need to run them as a high and low sub. The driver Characteristics and port tune I think determine what frequency they play well at and the box allows for full range. So you could have four Devs doing different things but they will also help room modes because they still help all the way through. I hope I explained that right.

I plan on more testing with graphs and this is also me comparing just the four in front of me by ear. More to come....
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post #21 of 33 Old 04-09-2020, 05:36 PM - Thread Starter
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So, I got my mic out and asked my wife to come down and listen as well. Interesting stuff....

But first, here is what my first initial review was on. As you can see, my level matching by ear isn’t all that close. BUT.... the F20 and the Dual look pretty similar. Hmmmm





Now things get interesting.... this is me after a little fiddling around.



And this is what it should look like. -5db for the F20s - WOW. HEHE, good thing I built four.




After a little EQ and real level matching I got the F20s and the duals to look identical on a 1:1 scale.



What did my wife say with blind testing??? IRONY.
She picked the duals. Guess what, so did I. You know why (I think), I believe it was because I have two subs in two different locations rather than the one location so when you move your head ever so slightly room modes don’t effect it as much.

Maybe someone like @LTD02 or @mtg90 or @Rcris could give a good reason that is like that. Thoughts guys?

Conclusion.... I’m still going to remove my F20s and run all four duals for even better room modes, oh and the mini? I wasn’t kidding on the midbass. I’m Going to run them in back, ya know, for fun.
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post #22 of 33 Old 04-09-2020, 06:09 PM - Thread Starter
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And here is the measurements with no filters. About 4inches from mouth in room and 1/2” from pa460 to clearly show the 42hz port tune.

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post #23 of 33 Old 04-10-2020, 01:21 PM
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OK. Now I'm really confused.

In the second graph of Post 21, it looks like the Mini Dev performs better than the PA460 VBSS. BUT, in the last graph in Post 21, the PA460 VBSS outdoes the Mini Dev.

Then, in Post 22, it looks like the Mini Dev performs better than them all .

What am I not understanding here ???
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post #24 of 33 Old 04-10-2020, 04:02 PM - Thread Starter
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OK. Now I'm really confused.

In the second graph of Post 21, it looks like the Mini Dev performs better than the PA460 VBSS. BUT, in the last graph in Post 21, the PA460 VBSS outdoes the Mini Dev.

Then, in Post 22, it looks like the Mini Dev performs better than them all .

What am I not understanding here ???

I gave a review up further in the post without a mic, this first two graphs is the result of that. By ear...

Then with a little eq and real level matching you can see the mini and the dual are similar in spl and the F20 is +5db louder. And the pa460 is -5db lower. The pa is nowhere close to the mini dev in comparision, the 1:1 smoothing makes it a little confusing. That was really to show the F20 and the Dual are so close in frequency response that just a little Eq was needed to make them perform the same although at a lower level. And to equal the FR of the F20 is quite impressive.


Post 22 is just a natural response curve of the box IN ROOM right in front of the speaker, this will never show spl, only how it will play. It should end up looking just like the model (minus the room gain) if it was built correctly.

I thought this whole thread would have been easier. Damn amateur
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post #25 of 33 Old 04-19-2020, 03:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Audiophile75 View Post
So, I have NOT got my mic out yet. I decided to just play some music in my sweet spot. Here is what level matching by ear gets. Keep in mind the PA is on a 40hz xo.

...

Initial thoughts, (no eq, no REW yet)....

The F20s wins hands down. It just does everything. Midbass kicks and low frequencies are no problem. I knew they were my favorite for a reason. And can shake a house easily, they are no joke for just 15s but the boxes are bigger.

The dual dev is really not far behind but it does lack the midbass, but not much. The low end is just a tad better then the F20. This could be a good full range budget build if you already had good midbass in your mains.

The Mini PA Dev is a midbass monster AND it can go low but you will need six or more of these in a room to compare to the duals or the F20 on the low end but they would crush you in midbass by then.

The pa although crossed and less efficient is not far behind... in 4th place lol. I actually was a bit shocked with this because it sounded fuller with less midbass than the mini. This would be a better main speaker down to 40hz rather than a sub, very suttle and smooth.

Sooooo, if I run both Devs together (all four) they COMPARE equally with the F20s almost to a perfect match but, if I add the PA to the dual it does not compare. The horns no matter what has a IN YOUR FACE sound signature to it almost like it gives you feeling even at a low level.

That is all for now, EQ and REW tomorrow.
Nice comparison, thanks.

Seeing you describe the bass of the F20's the way you do is interesting. "IN YOUR FACE," you write - so actually a different bass character than the other subs, even level matched and all? I've always found horn subs to have a particular presence in their sonic presentation that is intrinsically different compared to direct radiators, and I fully agree on their "attentiveness" even at lower levels.

Some 2 years ago I was on the verge of giving the green light for having build two F20's for my home music and HT set-up (with no surrounds or center channel), but opted for a pair of @lilmike 's MicroWrecker tapped horns instead. I enjoy them immensely, and gather the F20's would have made me feel very happy as well. It would be interesting to compare them head-to-head, so to speak, but for all I can assses they're quite similar in overall SPL and extension envelope, though they may not be of the same "sonic cloth."

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post #26 of 33 Old 04-19-2020, 05:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Nice comparison, thanks.

Seeing you describe the bass of the F20's the way you do is interesting. "IN YOUR FACE," you write - so actually a different bass character than the other subs, even level matched and all? I've always found horn subs to have a particular presence in their sonic presentation that is intrinsically different compared to direct radiators, and I fully agree on their "attentiveness" even at lower levels.

Some 2 years ago I was on the verge of giving the green light for having build two F20's for my home music and HT set-up (with no surrounds or center channel), but instead opted for a pair of @lilmike 's MicroWrecker tapped horns instead. I enjoy them immensely, and gather the F20's would have made me feel very happy as well. It would be interesting to compare them head-to-head, so to speak, but for all I can assses they're quite similar in overall SPL and extension envelope, though they may not be of the same "sonic cloth."

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Originally Posted by rezag View Post
Nice comparison, thanks.

Some 2 years ago I was on the verge of giving the green light for having build two F20's for my home music and HT set-up (with no surrounds or center channel), but instead opted for a pair of MicroWrecker tapped horns instead. I enjoy them immensely, and gather the F20's would have made me feel very happy as well. It would be interesting to compare them head-to-head, so to speak, but for all I can assses they're quite similar in overall SPL and extension envelope, though they may not be of the same "sonic cloth."
I actually have two picowreckers in my garage too. The sonic character of the picowreckers have a very full sound to them very much like the Dual JBL Dev except because of the tapped horn it falls off the top end so no real midbass but very full sound.
The F20 is just smooth all the way through without any bloat-ness down low and plenty of smooth midbass that is perfect for your typical handgun smack. For a speaker that goes 20-100hz it really is my favorite.

AND NOW MY FINAL REVIEW ON —> 4 - Dual JBL Devs <—-
Holy smokes these are no joke. I was rather impressed on how flat they are with room gain but with four boxes up front maybe I should have expected that. Anyways, I do relate these to the picowreckers in the fact they play to the lower smoother frequencies better. The midbass is there but smoother rather than snappy. I did find it ironic that Even though they are tuned low all six of my horns started to roll off above 20hz, with more boxes though the roll off was at a much shallower rate. Four of these on 410w each box put +5db on my two F20s at 525w each which is an impressive feat. Realistically these are by far my favorite “”budget efficient build that can do everything”” well from 20-100hz in a box that’s not the size of a house, but if asked which is the best sounding it will always be my F20’s. Sorry, @redfive and @a77cj7 but don’t fret, this is my FAVORITE budget build of all time — size, efficient, price, what it does..... it checks every box. But.... and that’s why I built four. Now if I can just get my projector to stop shaking (I thought it was my eyeballs).
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post #27 of 33 Old 04-19-2020, 06:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Audiophile75 View Post
Realistically these are by far my favorite “”budget efficient build that can do everything”” well from 20-100hz in a box that’s not the size of a house, but if asked which is the best sounding it will always be my F20’s. Sorry, @redfive and @a77cj7 but don’t fret, this is my FAVORITE budget build of all time — size, efficient, price, what it does..... it checks every box. But.... and that’s why I built four. Now if I can just get my projector to stop shaking (I thought it was my eyeballs).
Having the “non-budget” versions of both devs and the FLH, I fully agree with you. The nsw v3 does everything from 20hz to ridiculous midbass punch. I can overfeed the dev variants and get off-noises, the v3 is clear bass all the way to coil smell.
I can match the v3’s sound and output with a mix of dev’s, but it takes both my mini’s and the alpha to do it. Three drivers and twice the power.

That said, would I recommend everyone build FLHs? Absolutely not. They are huge, the build is WAY more complex, and they require lots of delay in the system due to horn path length. Dev’s are comparatively small, simple, and easy.

But for certain people, they are the best solution.

I can’t comment on the tapped horns yet, I haven’t built my pair. Taking some time to enjoy what I have before building more.

Oh, and to tag John you have to add a space. @Red Five

Chris
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post #28 of 33 Old 04-19-2020, 06:55 PM
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Glad to hear they are living up to expectations

I think Chris's room has done him no favors on the room gain front. The Minis do not sound all that mid bass heavy in my room with -3db off the midbass YPAO volume on. My problem is just getting pressure up in a room that takes up 70% of the floor space in a good sized ranch. I have to hear one of the 4th order FLHs one of these days. No one that I know of has a F20 or V3 closer than 6 or 7 hours drive from me.

Chris, have you compared the impulse response of a Devastator to an F20 or V3? I always forget to compare them head to head. The Devs ring a little bit, I think that is why they are perceived as smooth.

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Glad to hear they are living up to expectations

I think Chris's room has done him no favors on the room gain front. The Minis do not sound all that mid bass heavy in my room with -3db off the midbass YPAO volume on. My problem is just getting pressure up in a room that takes up 70% of the floor space in a good sized ranch. I have to hear one of the 4th order FLHs one of these days. No one that I know of has a F20 or V3 closer than 6 or 7 hours drive from me.

Chris, have you compared the impulse response of a Devastator to an F20 or V3? I always forget to compare them head to head. The Devs ring a little bit, I think that is why they are perceived as smooth.

Nope, haven’t messed with the impulse response at all.

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post #30 of 33 Old 04-20-2020, 11:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Audiophile75 View Post
I actually have two picowreckers in my garage too. The sonic character of the picowreckers have a very full sound to them very much like the Dual JBL Dev except because of the tapped horn it falls off the top end so no real midbass but very full sound.
The F20 is just smooth all the way through without any bloat-ness down low and plenty of smooth midbass that is perfect for your typical handgun smack. For a speaker that goes 20-100hz it really is my favorite.

...
Again, interesting (or, as expressed via the video below ). It's not that I rigidly seek to apply a homogenized label that states "FLH's sound this way," "tapped horns like that," "ported subs something very other" etc., but it does seem there's a distinction in the sonic signature between, in this case, a classic front loaded horn (like the F20) and a tapped horn (the pico's here). I've heard it mentioned elsewhere that tapped horns have a "character" with a particular warmth (fullness?) and effortlessness about them (I would also add smoothness or liquidity, as several who've heard my MW's have described their sound as exhibiting exactly that), whereas with front loaded horns several individuals have gone out of their way saying they are very smooth sounding overall and, as you also point out, having prodigious midbass capabilities.

I believe what you describe as "full" sounding about the pico's may be another way of saying perhaps that they exhibit warmth in their presentation? From what I can gather though it would seem a front loaded horn like the F20's may be the most "neutral" sounding of the bunch, or certainly to your preferred linking. What I like in particular about both the front loaded horns and tapped horns I've heard is the presence of bass, one that is heard/felt at lower volumes as well, and that has an enveloping quality. No other bass principle I've heard can do the same "trick."

My use of the term 'character' doesn't necessarily imply a deviation or sorts from an assumed neutrality. Effortlessness in bass reproduction is really only a character to those who're usually not exposed to it, and "warmth" or "fullness" isn't necessarily to say that the bass is too ripe or undefined even. Listening to a contrabass in the flesh (un-amplified) is very much a full, resonant and harmonically rich sound, and there are many other examples of live acoustic instruments that renders the "tight bass" mantra decidedly unnatural.


Last edited by rezag; 04-21-2020 at 05:57 AM.
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