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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm thinking my next upgrade is to a 3-way design for the front 3.


Most speakers I've heard (and all I've owned) have been 2-way, so no experience with dedicated midranges.


What are peoples thoughts on the various options for a midrange driver.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I did find this interesting webpage talking about various technologies for the different drivers...


... http://www.nutshellhifi.com/library/speaker-design2.html


The discussion i found that referenced this pointed out that as long as crossed high enough (700Hz or so) that the dome mids can be great (despite the article author's aversion to them).
 

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Interesting article, thanks for the link. I especially liked the general parts that came before the sections on the various types of drivers and come materials.


His discussion of the driver types is also good, but it was written in 2001 and in some respects is beginning to be dated. In particular, there has been some significant progress with ribbon and magnetic planar tweeters as well as larger magnetic planar drivers. There are also newer cone driver materials including ceramics, newer coated (anodized) aluminum alloys, magnesium alloy, reed fiber doped paper, and woven polypropylene that are worthwhile improvements. Some of these have been developed by manufacturers in China or in such European countries as Serbia.


I've never seen more than one or two commercial 3-way speakers with dome mid ranges. I can think of just a few 2" dome mid range drivers available for DIY. As you said, they don't seem to be able to go lower than 700 (or 800) Hz, which can be a difficult reach for 8" woofers. So, I don't think this type has had much progress since the article was written.


The best mid drivers I've heard have 4" or 5" cones made with a variety of different materials. There are also some good magnetic planar mid ranges such as those made by BG.
 

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Rick, I've seen you posting in the Philharmonic Audio forum, so you're aware of both RAAL ribbon tweeters and the BG Neo8 planar midrange driver. Honestly, I wouldn't sell my speakers for twice what they cost me.


I was recently lucky enough to purchase a pair of EMP Tek E41-B with a 4" beryllium mid, the clarity is outstanding. There aren't many speakers today who use beryllium (although tweeters are more common), Usher BE-10 and Pioneer S-1EX come to mind, as well as my first "real" speakers 33 years ago (jeez I'm getting old), the Yamaha NS-1000M - still one of the best "bookshelf" speakers I've ever heard. I'm not sure beryllium woofers are popular or even available for DIYers but it's yet another possibility to consider.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nethawk  /t/1469144/cone-vs-dome-for-midrange-thoughts-opinions#post_23227338


Rick, I've seen you posting in the Philharmonic Audio forum

I post there because I have a great deal of respect for Dennis' skills on crossovers.


He did the crossovers in my livingroom bookshelves - they have become the WOW1 at SalkSound (did I mention that they are awesome speakers
).


I certainly trust that he will end up being the guy who designs the crossovers for the 3-ways to replace my KEFs in my HT when i finish exploring, learning and saving up for the upgrade



PS. Who makes a berrylium mid you can buy? There are paper cone, soft dome and ceramic that have caught my eye.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by rick240  /t/1469144/cone-vs-dome-for-midrange-thoughts-opinions#post_23227585


Who makes a berrylium mid you can buy? There are paper cone, soft dome and ceramic that have caught my eye.

I'd ask Dennis what mid drivers he likes. He'll know as well as or better than anyone else. He has much experience with most all of the new designs available, In his 3-way designs with open back mid ranges, he has chosen 4" Accuton ceramics (in the Salk SoundScapes), BG Neo8 in the Phil 1/2/3, and the Tang Band 4" (?) mid range in the new slim Phil 3-way are examples of what he chooses. It depends not only on the cone material, but how easily and smoothly it can be crossed over to the woofer and tweeter. Therefore, the opinion of the crossover designer is of high importance.


Remember that most, if not all, beryllium cones or domes are aluminum alloys with a relatively small amount of beryllium as part of the mix. I don't know for certain, but a metal made of a high percentage of beryllium would be prohibitively expensive, brittle, and probably very difficult to machine and shape.


I also don't know for certain whether aluminum alloys containing beryllium always sound noticeably different that other aluminum alloys. A lot of that sound characteristic depends on choices made while designing the crossover.


I'm glad to know you like your new Salk WOW1s. When it comes to Dennis's ability, and his judgements about how a speaker should sound, I'm with you
.
 
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