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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was thinking about building an infinite baffle sub into my house. Unfortunately, it looks like the particulars of my house, etc. won't work for that. But it's got me thinking about building a sub. It could be fun to build part of my stereo system, rather than buying it all. I know very little about this, so these questions may be silly. But here's what I'm thinking...


What if I buy something big like an 18" Avalanche driver ($300-ish). Then some wood to make a big box on which to mount the driver ($100-ish for wood, tools, etc.). Then hook up a powerful amp like a Behringer EP2500 ($300-ish). Would I have an amazing sub that plays well, deep, and musical for a mere $700?


I'm not limited to a budget of $700. But I'm just wondering if I can have some fun building a sub and get something better sounding for a given amount of money versus, say, a fine offering from SVS.


But I'm guessing there is a lot more to sub design and construction that just a driver, box, and amp. True? Enlighten me, please. Thanks.

:)


-Jon
 

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Unfortunately, you have missed out on all the Avalanche 18s unless they post up some B stock. If you want to stick with AA, you'll have to wait for their new lines.


As for the other part of your question, if you plan on going ported, you will also need to construct a port. Aside from that, just keep doing some give and take with volume, port size, and tuning in WinISD or Unibox until you end up with a balanced design. By balanced design I mean doesn't exceed excursion at too high a frequency, is tuned to have the highest spl while maintaining a flat FR, and doesn't have excessively high group delay or port velocity.


I'd highly recommend checking out as many DIY subs people have created as you can to see what you like and how they went about it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hey Steve,


Thanks for the reply. No biggie on missing the 18's. I can wait until the new versions come out. I'm picking the various parts of this new stereo/HT system slowly (speakers, amps, etc.). Taking my time to do it right. :)


So it looks like I need to consider volume, porting, tuning, etc. So it's not as simple as build a big box and attach the driver, eh? I figured as much. how do I go about doing that? There must be some good resources for building subs on the web? I just found http://www.diysubwoofers.org/ but things there look to be cheaper, smaller drivers.


Would using bigger and higher quality drivers such as Avalanche 18's (or their new equivalent) provide for a better sub? Surely, someone out there must have done something like this. I can't be the first to have the idea- get a big, high quality driver (or more than one) and a high powered amp. And then some wood...
 

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Dr. Jon, you are definitely not the first, and you won't be the last.


I am currently finishing up two 6' tall 28" diameter sonosubs that each use an Avalanche 18 and are paired with a 600 watt x 2 amp. As you said, BIG enclosure, high quality driver, and powerful amp. That is most direct way of getting a sub that goes really low and really loud while maintaining good sound quality.


Just do some searching on google for DIY subwoofer and you will quickly find what you want. Don't know if you're interested, but check out what a sonosub is as well.
 

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Sonosubs rock! :cool: Wasn't this exactly how SVS got their start?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveCallas
Dr. Jon, you are definitely not the first, and you won't be the last.


I am currently finishing up two 6' tall 28" diameter sonosubs that each use an Avalanche 18 and are paired with a 600 watt x 2 amp. As you said, BIG enclosure, high quality driver, and powerful amp. That is most direct way of getting a sub that goes really low and really loud while maintaining good sound quality.


Just do some searching on google for DIY subwoofer and you will quickly find what you want. Don't know if you're interested, but check out what a sonosub is as well.
Yeah, man- THAT is what I'm talking about! :D Avalanche 18's, 600 W amp, two of them. Mmmmm... :)


Are you making up your own plans? Or is this some commonly used one?


I'll google around a bit. Don't know what a sonosub is. I'll look.
 

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Ascendant gives you the box plans on their site. You're good to go as long as you can build them.
 

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Holy fook, 6' TALL?! I have a 6' section of sonotube left, hmmmm....


Someone said sonosub? Check the sig. :)
 

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Yep, 6' tall, ridiculously big. It's not really the 6' that's the problem, it's the 28" diameter...I can't wrap my arms around it and it will be a ***** to move when it's done.


DrJon, I'm basically using the generic sonosub design with the driver mouted in a down firing position on the bottom and a single large port on the top. 3 layers of 3/4" MDF for the caps and 1 layer for the baseplate. I basically looked at the designs by Patrick

http://www.io.com/~patman/diy.html


by Thomas

http://www.theaudioworx.com/


by Joe

http://home.triad.rr.com/leggio/imag...P7110817-1.jpg


and various others and kind of conglomerated them into a generic design.


One thing I learned - if you live in an apartment and don't really have space to do your own hand routing for the end caps and base, you are better off money-wise to go with a box sub instead of a sonosub. Woodshops with CNC routers charge a nice little sum to do the cutting for you. But if you can do your own routing, I think the benefits of a sonosub make it a better option than a box.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hey Steve,


Thanks for the info and the interesting links. That work is a little involved. Not too bad looking. But a step up in effort over just slapping together a big box with holes. I'll think about it, though. Might be a fun way to add a DIY part to the stereo. Maybe save some money. And maybe even get better sound than from a purchased sub. Hmmmm...
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by DrJon
But a step up in effort over just slapping together a big box with holes.
If you think about it, a sonosub is actually easier. All you need is a router with a circle cutting jig, some type of hand saw to cut the legs and tube and a drill. A sonosub requires no additional bracing so there is much less cutting. A properly built box will have a double thick baffle and extensive internal bracing. Accurate cuts require a table saw. You will also need numerour clamps to hold all of the boards together. If you haven't built a speaker before, a sonosub is a great starting project.


-Robert
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by rlj5242
If you think about it, a sonosub is actually easier. All you need is a router with a circle cutting jig, some type of hand saw to cut the legs and tube and a drill. A sonosub requires no additional bracing so there is much less cutting. A properly built box will have a double thick baffle and extensive internal bracing. Accurate cuts require a table saw. You will also need numerour clamps to hold all of the boards together. If you haven't built a speaker before, a sonosub is a great starting project.


-Robert
Yeah, good point. I guess you're right. I don't have any experience with jigs, routers, or cutting circles. So that looked a little daunting. But this could be a good excuse to learn. Hmmm...


So if you buy, say, an 18" driver and some of that tube, how do you figure out how long the tube should be, how large the openings at the other end should be, etc.?


And do these sonosubs tend to sound better than most regular subs you can buy (e.g., an SVS PB-Plus/2 that I have my eye on )?


-Jon
 

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You need to pick a driver, download either Unibox or WinISD (I MUCH prefer Unibox) and then start running sims. Then come back and ask more questions. Once you determine an internal volume, you use a little high school (maybe just middle school) math and determine the external dimensions you need to get said volume.


A properly built enclosure, whether it be a tube, box, etc., will have no sound advantage over any other properly built enclosure. A box does require more bracing than a sonotube based sub, but that factors into the "properly built" statement I made.
 

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DrJon, funny you should mention the SVS PB12/2, I was all set to pick up one myself several months ago. Out of curiousity, I started asking how a pair of no compromise sonosubs would compare to the said SVS. The responses I got were interesting so I downloaded WinISD and Unibox, starting looking more closely at the Avalanche drivers, did some calculations, and found that for about the same price, the DIY sonosubs would be leaps and bounds better than the SVS. This isn't to say the PB12/2 isn't a great sub, but it's just no comparison.


Fast forward a few months and LOTS of questions later, and I should have the first one ready to go next week. I won't even assemble the second one until I move out of this apartment because one alone will probably get me evicted. I will post my real world measurements to see how closely they match the programs.


Here are my threads if you want to gather more info.

http://www.hometheaterforum.com/htfo...hreadid=231283

http://www.hometheaterforum.com/htfo...hreadid=237208
 

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DrJon, after figuring out all the ish-nish from WinISD / Unibox, you can use these tools to help figure out what size of tube you need cut.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Bunge
You need to pick a driver, download either Unibox or WinISD (I MUCH prefer Unibox) and then start running sims. Then come back and ask more questions. Once you determine an internal volume, you use a little high school (maybe just middle school) math and determine the external dimensions you need to get said volume.


A properly built enclosure, whether it be a tube, box, etc., will have no sound advantage over any other properly built enclosure. A box does require more bracing than a sonotube based sub, but that factors into the "properly built" statement I made.


OK, sounds good- thanks. I don't know much about good drivers. I've heard good things about the Avalanceh 18" so maybe that's a decent one to build a sub around? Yeah, maybe it's time I look into this more seriously.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by 12andy
DrJon, after figuring out all the ish-nish from WinISD / Unibox, you can use these tools to help figure out what size of tube you need cut.
Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveCallas
DrJon, funny you should mention the SVS PB12/2, I was all set to pick up one myself several months ago. Out of curiousity, I started asking how a pair of no compromise sonosubs would compare to the said SVS. The responses I got were interesting so I downloaded WinISD and Unibox, starting looking more closely at the Avalanche drivers, did some calculations, and found that for about the same price, the DIY sonosubs would be leaps and bounds better than the SVS. This isn't to say the PB12/2 isn't a great sub, but it's just no comparison.


Fast forward a few months and LOTS of questions later, and I should have the first one ready to go next week. I won't even assemble the second one until I move out of this apartment because one alone will probably get me evicted. I will post my real world measurements to see how closely they match the programs.


Here are my threads if you want to gather more info.

http://www.hometheaterforum.com/htfo...hreadid=231283

http://www.hometheaterforum.com/htfo...hreadid=237208
Hi Steve,


I just had a quick look at your links. So you think a good 18" Avalanche-based sonosub will sound better than, say, an SVS PB- Plus/2, eh? Interesting. If you figure around $400 for a driver, $300-600 for an amp, $100-200 in wood, materials, etc. you certainly come out ahead financially. But for alll the effort of building it, I'd want to know it will actually sound better. If so, I may want to give this a shot.


Are you going to have instructions for all of what you did? I've looked around, but haven't found anyone's website where they used these 18" drivers. If I'm going to put in the effort, I might as well use the best drivers I can get my hands on. But I'd be more at ease going into this project if someone else has already done it. Thanks.


-Jon
 
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