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Palomino Audio Project (Read 42951 times)
Palomino
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Palomino Audio Project
01/31/16 at 17:00:15
 
Warning…long post.

The title of this thread is a spoof on the speaker brand Pure Audio Project.  I heard their OB speakers at Axpona last year and liked them.  

http://www.pureaudioproject.com/trio15-open-baffle-speakers-pureaudioproject/

Then I heard ProggRob’s Hawthorne Trios with his UFO Zen and felt the quality bass they produced was something I wanted.  Then I heard Randy’s OBs at the fest with a Augie helper  http://www.caintuckaudio.com/ http://www.hawthorneaudio.com/catalogs/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=3&... and liked how musical it was.  Finally, ProggRob came over for a CDApS session and gave his honest opinion that bass was not a strength of my system.  He was right and that pushed me over the point of no return.

So, I had a little mad money at the end of the year and bought a single Augie from Hawthorne Audio along with a Dayton Audio 250W plate amp.  I figured if I liked it well enough I would get a nice baffle from Randy and be all set.  Little did I know…

Well, I got the Augie, stuck it in a 23.5W X 22H MDF baffle made from leftover wood , hooked it up and it was another wow moment for me - like when I heard my Rachael on a PS Audio power conditioner or when I got the Uptone Audio Regen.  But while it was great, I immediately wanted more.



So, I blew up my budget and ordered another Augie.  Stuck it in another MDF baffle made from leftover wood and set it up running off the plate amp in dual mono.  More goodness as the rabbit hole began to open wider and wider.

Then I thought why not get a couple Besty drivers.  Randy’s OBs at the Fest sounded good.  Those don’t cost much, right?  But then I did some research, exchanged notes with Randy and Maddog07 and started weighing out my options.  Betsy?  Audio Nirvana?  Or the Tang Band W8 1808 which was used in the Pure Audio Project?

I finally decided to take a chance on the Tang Band.  I had used a smaller Tang Band in the past in a simple OB I built pre-Decware days.  I figured that the Pure Audio speakers had received good reviews and they were at the core of that sound.   Steve also had a favorable opinion of them when he was looking for an OB driver.  Finally, I had a 20% off coupon from Parts Express so Tang Band it was.

I got the Tang Bands and cut some 23.5W X 13.5H baffles out of old wood and literally tacked them to the Augie MDF baffles with some leftover furring strip and some drywall screws.

The Tang Bands literally sounded like I was listening to music through a telephone hand set.  But, I was emotionally prepared for break in time, so I let them play for 24 hours.   Hmmmm…better.  Another 24 hours.  Better still.  Another day or so and I think we were there.

I played with the crossover frequency on the plate amp.  Originally, about 50hz.  Then full on (180hz), then backed it off to about 70hz.  That seemed about right.  Then I started playing with volume.  I started out with it about ¾.  But after much fiddling, I ended up about only ¼.  

Where these Augies help the most is in helping you feel the low end.  They provide a nice tight foundation.  If you have the crossover set too high, you can definitely hear the nice tight bass, but it starts to mess up and cloud the mid-range.  Same thing with volume.  It’s cool to rattle your walls, but it can overwhelm everything.

Something was still amiss.  Imaging seems off, so I decided to try an old honker Class D stereo amp that I had from pre-Decware days.  I pulled it out of the closet, and hooked it up to the line out from the plate amp, and rewired everything in stereo.

Wow.  Even tighter and more musical bass.   The plate amp wasn’t even close.  No crossover on the class D though, so I exchanged more notes with Randy and did some reading about how guys are powering the bottom end with Crown class D professional amps.  They have input sensitivity adjustment and a digital crossover (low pass/high pass).

In the meantime, I received a gift card from one of my employees for home depot, so I go there and get material to make a prototype of what I had in mind for the final OB.  A  Pure Audio Project style baffle, only without two bass drivers per side, just an Augie per side.



The key to the Pure Audio design is the metal that bolts into three pieces of wood and forms the triangle behind the baffles to give it a three point stance for stability.  I found some 48” aluminum slats at home depot for about $12each. [url= http://www.homedepot.com/p/Everbilt-1-1-2-in-x-48-in-Aluminum-Flat-Bar-with-1-8-...[/url]  

Using some foam board I modeled out the bends and length of each slat.  If I bent them just right, I could get three 16” aluminum bars out of each slat.   I cut them using a hack saw and then bent them using a vice.  

I also picked up some clear pine for the two six foot 1X2s for each side and one six foot 1X3 for the back pillar.  In hindsight, I should have grabbed cherry or oak, but I can always change that out later if I want to.

I cut the wood into 36” lengths, drilled the holes and bolted it together along with a baffle I cut out of cheap plywood for the Augie and used the same baffle I had cut for the Tang Band.  It all worked and was surprisingly stable. It all looked like it was going to work, so I bought some good Baltic Birch ply and made good baffles.







Unfortunately, I picked the coldest weekend of the year to apply the stain and finish to the wood, and royally screwed the baffles up rushing through the job.  When it warmed up, I took the sander to the baffle fronts and refinished them so at least they look pretty good.  



I then made the second frame and bolted everything together and it looked pretty decent.  I also had some adjustable feet that I put on so I could vary the angle.   They stand ~37” high and 23.5” wide.  The middle of the Tang Band is right about ear level for my listening chair.

I sanded down the aluminum bars and applied a rubber paint to make them black and maybe help with vibrations.  I also got some nice black socket head screws, washers and nyloc nuts off ebay and put those on in place of the cheap galvanized nuts and bolts from the prototype and it looks a little more professional.  I still need a few more bolts to completely secure the drivers, but otherwise, they are done.







So back to the Crown amp.  I found one cheap on eBay.  Since the
Crown only has line level inputs, I also bought a cheap high level to line level converter (used in car audio) so I could run the Crown straight off the Torii binding posts.  The el cheapo converter works, but I am going to build a “magic cable” designed by Dennis of Hornshoppe Horns fame that basically involves wiring in a 600 ohm resistor into your speaker wires to step down the juice from your amp to something the Crown can use.



So now I am tuning everything.  The Tang Band does have the typical single driver rising frequency response.  But I have found that playing with toe-in can impact this.  The more off axis you are, the less high end you get.  I am also playing with the treble shunt on the Torii III to help with this and mid-range shout.  The crown crossover point is now right about 100hz and I am running the input sensitivity up around ½ to ¾.  Some of this is due to the Crown requiring more input juice which I suspect the el cheapo line converter does not deliver.  I should be able to back it off again with the Magic Cable once I get it put together.

These speakers do some things amazingly well.  Soundstage, ambience, detail, tight, tight musical bass, real sound quality.   Imaging at first was not bad but not great, so I continue to play with positioning and toe in and it is getting much better.  They play a variety of music very well.   Jazz, light rock, classical, progressive, ambient, classic rock all sound good.   Uber complex stuff does give them a little trouble, but I don’t listen to listen to a lot of stuff like that.

I probably have them in too small a room.  Even though they are duos and not the trios as offered by Hawthorne and Pure Audio, they are a little physically imposing.   I ended up backing my listening chair up and I may move some of my room treatments to fine tune the sound.
I did some REW measurements and they are flatter than expected.  Also, I compared the FR of the OBs to the DIY monoliths and you can most clearly see the pickup between 25 and 100hz, which is kind of what I was after in the first place.  

It was a bit of a winding road getting here, but for now I am an OB guy.  It is a bit addictive.

Thanks to Randy, ProgRob, Darrel Hawthorne and maddog07 for your help.


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maddog07
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #1 - 01/31/16 at 17:46:41
 
hey Palomino.....  looking mighty fine.  I like your idea where you used the aluminum bar stock, and bent it... I took the "wood" path for the back bracing of my pseudo Trio's using red oak, and it was a PITA.  And as you know, I went with a 15" AN full-ranger which is breaking-in nicely at this point.  I'm still messing around with my pre/amp/crossover config., and not sure what I like best yet, but the Crown xls-2500 driving four Augie's do not only bass "quantity", but bass "quality" like I've never heard.  I know, that for me, for the foreseeable future, that crossoverless full-rangers and Augie's in OB's are the ticket to the land of Oz.  I don't think I've ever heard more "realistic" sound from a home stereo system.  I also owe some thanks to Randy for showing me the path to enlightenment with OB's.
I spent five hours at a local blues club yesterday afternoon, and as soon as I got home I fired up the stereo to compare my sonic memory of "live" versus reproduced.  Well..... as expected, reproduced still ain't "live", but I'm a helluva lot closer than I've ever been before.....
Actually, amazingly close in some aspects.  I have dynamics, rez, etc. approaching live.  What I lack is "scale".  How do we make our listening rooms sound as "big" as that of a club that's 10x, 15x or 20x the size of our listening rooms?  For one thing, I have a whole stack of Decware diffuser kits sitting in my shop that I've never assembled - this is probably my best bet "next step" - I need to get busy.

again.... nice job - enjoy and keep us posted on the evolution of your project.
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Donnie
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #2 - 01/31/16 at 19:19:57
 
Palomino, this appeared at exactly the right time for me. I have been researching OB's all of this weekend. Learning about QT's and excursion lengths and stuff like that.
Your report helps me a lot.
The fab part is the simple stuff for me. I have a whole crew of CAD designers and tool makers that work for me. The aluminum stuff will be cut out on our water jet. I might even have them jet out the baffle holes.
The Rest of the stuff needs to be thought out, but seeing that someone else has figured it out gives me insperation.
You have fired me up, thank you.
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Palomino
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #3 - 01/31/16 at 22:00:41
 
Your last build helped me get moving Donnie!

Let me know if you want any measurements.  My metal work was a little sloppy on the first set of bars.  I don't drill so straight.  The second set was better.  Having them precision cut is the way to go.

maddog, I had a peak listening experience last night so I think I am close.  I may be able to move my listening position further back because the measurements don't show the 100hz hump I had before.  I am getting the imaging dialed in.  What a big sound.

Donnie, definitely check out the Augies.  Combined with the Crown amp, the bass is awesome and will not only thrill you musically, but rock you as well.
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« Last Edit: 01/31/16 at 22:17:00 by Palomino »  

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Lin
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #4 - 01/31/16 at 22:26:37
 
Nice project!

My 2cents Wink

A narrower baffle for the TB will help imaging.

Preferences vary, but I like less treatment on the wall behind the speakers and the speakers out 5' or more.
At 5.5' (or more) our ears can easily distinguish between direct and reflected sounds.
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« Last Edit: 01/31/16 at 22:29:31 by Lin »  
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Donnie
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #5 - 01/31/16 at 22:48:31
 
Lin, How narrow of a baffle should I make if I use TB's?
A guy who works for me has some real nice slabs of walnut that are around 16" wide, I was planning on gluing something up. But being basically lazy, if I can get by without having to do extra work...
But the Augies would need something wider, maybe run the grain east to west instead of north to south?
Oh my oh my, I can see that I'm in trouble now.
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Palomino
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #6 - 02/01/16 at 02:39:10
 
I have to rethink treatments.  It's a completely different ballgame now.  These speakers seem to want nothing behind them.  I will continue to experiment.  

4' from the front wall is about all I can do.  I am getting great depth right now.  Imaging is really dependent on toe in.  

These speakers seem to be easy to crank up too loud Wink
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JD
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #7 - 02/01/16 at 12:37:57
 
I admire your dedication to improving the sound and willingness to try new projects, best of luck. Keep us in the loop.

JD

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Lin
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #8 - 02/01/16 at 13:46:11
 
Donnie,

16" should work well with an 8" driver; width is a trade off between imaging and how low the the wideband driver will play. I would offset the TB so that the distances from the driver to the top and both sides of the baffle are all different.
You can always make the bottom an H baffle for the Augies. Adding an 8" side panel + 16" = 24" total.


Palomino,

Shorter distances can work fine.
The 11' (5.5' x 2) target allows enough delay that ours brains don't work as hard to determine if a sound is direct or reflected.
I personally prefer an untreated wall as I feel it adds to the "live" sound. I've heard treated wall setups that made OB speakers sound more like monopole speakers.
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« Last Edit: 02/01/16 at 13:54:45 by Lin »  
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Palomino
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #9 - 02/01/16 at 14:13:05
 
Thanks Lin,

When I first set them up, I angled them like the DIY Monoliths (pointed right at my ears).  No depth of soundstage and more songs seemed to have certain instruments pinned to the speaker.  They just didn't disappear as well.

Now I am shooting just to the side of each ear and it has improved a lot.  Perhaps just a shade less focused than my other speakers and a much better disappearing act on most songs.  I think I am going to remove all treatments behind and see what that does for me.

In the size baffle that I have the Tang Bands, they produce a surprising amount of bass.  I've had situations where I forget to turn on the Crown and still had satisfying listening sessions.  Not sure how I would change them much given the Pure Audio style baffle.  I could only whack about 1/2 to 3/4 on each side.  I could experiment top to bottom.  I could also put them back in the old MDF baffles and whack quite a bit off each side and see that that does for me.

Also, I forgot to mention that I feel the Tang Band are conservatively rated drivers at 93db.

I have a few experiments planned once I get the room a little more dialed in and see how the magic cable impacts the bass.  How do they sound with Rachael and no treble shunt?  How do they measure at various seating positions?  Seems the further away the better sounding.
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Lin
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #10 - 02/01/16 at 14:58:11
 
I always ran my Visaton B200s with no (or a very slight) toe in.

BTW thanks for mentioning the Magic Cable.
I have been trying to figure out what to buy to connect my tube integrated to a line level only sub and completely forgot that I have a NOS Magic Cable. Cool
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« Last Edit: 02/01/16 at 15:00:30 by Lin »  
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Palomino
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #11 - 02/01/16 at 15:08:59
 
JD,  Just saw your comment.  thanks

Lin,  Here is what I have on the construction of the magic cable.  Look right?

•      You can take a set of IC's and cut the RCA off one end.
         Solder a 600 ohm 1/2 watt 1% resistor to the lead going
            to the center pin
         Solder another piece of wire to the resistor
         And solder a piece of wire to the shield of the IC cable.  

•      The RCA will plug into the Crown's RCA inputs

•      The bare wires will hook to the amp speaker connections

The resistor goes to the "positive" on the power amp, right along with the speaker leads.

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Lin
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #12 - 02/01/16 at 22:50:18
 
Sorry I don't know. Embarrassed          Ed made mine.

Here is something I found while searching; reply 3:
http://www.audiocircle.com/index.php?topic=97456.0


Russound ADP-1.2
http://www.audiocircle.com/index.php?topic=139602.0
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« Last Edit: 02/01/16 at 22:52:10 by Lin »  
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Palomino
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #13 - 02/02/16 at 13:59:59
 
I saw those in my search as well.  Randy passed on the formula to me from people in the know so I believe it is right.  What I listed above includes my edits for understanding.  

I have a couple resistors on the way.

Last night I removed the absorbers/bass traps from behind the OBs.  I think I prefer it as it offers more of a feel for the studio/venue.

I also played again with the cross-over point on the Crown.  I went as high as 250hz (which is where Pure Audio crosses their W8.  Too muddy.  Then I went down as low as 50hz and it lacked the punch that makes these speakers more dynamic.  So now I am back around 100hz and it is sounding pretty good.

No real complaints about the imaging.  There are some situations where I feel like the baffles block sound waves from coming back to me, but generally, I close my eyes and forget they are there and all is good.

I did some before and after measurements and those absorbers/bass traps were doing their job, but I think it took too much away from the top end and ambience.  I think these boys like to breath.  I still kept the diffusers back there and added some styro diffusers where the absorbers/bass trap were.

Anyway, I am getting good sound once I have that cross-over dialed in.  I'll continue to do my OCD futzing, but its mostly gravy now.
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maddog07
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #14 - 02/02/16 at 20:27:42
 
I agree Pal... rear reflections are a "good thing" for a dipole OB speaker.  That is precisely what is responsible for their characteristic "big" sound... some like it - some don't.  I think it makes for a more realistic sound myself.  I do not have any treatments behind mine, but I am considering messing around with some "diffusion".  I think absorption behind the speakers would be a bad thing in most cases, unless you have a really nasty response peak or something.

I was studying the magic cables to allow you to step down the speaker outputs of a power amp to drive the line level inputs of another amp.  Looks reasonable, but it would seem to me (and I'm not an electrical engineer) that 1/2 watt power rating on the resistor would be too small.  For example, if you were taking another speaker level feed off a Torii to drive the inputs of the Crown, and the Torii is rated for 24-25 watts - wouldn't the resistor need to be able to handle that much power?  Perhaps due to input impedance of the Crown (or any amp) only very little "power" is actually transmitted - I don't know.  

Can anybody explain this?
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Palomino
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #15 - 02/02/16 at 20:30:17
 
I wondered this myself, but decided to stick as close to the magic cable formula as I could.  I actually could not find a 1/2 watt, so I went with 1 watt.

BTW, I may have mentioned this before, but the 600 ohm is specifically for the Crown, not some other amp/plate amp.
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ProggRob
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #16 - 02/02/16 at 22:44:28
 
Pal, mighty impressive work!  I really want to stop by soon, I'm simply  not content just reading about it.  When I hear it, then I will post!

Maddog - you don't believe that bass trapping in the corners behind the speakers is a good idea?  Are you saying no absorption of any kind?
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Palomino
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #17 - 02/02/16 at 23:16:19
 
If you and el Presidente are up for it, maybe Sunday.
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maddog07
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #18 - 02/03/16 at 18:11:01
 
I'm saying don't install absorption "just because" - only install absorption if you need it.  I think in "most" cases diffusion is beneficial, but I think absorption is really, really room dependent.  Just my .02 ¢
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« Last Edit: 02/03/16 at 18:14:26 by maddog07 »  

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Palomino
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #19 - 02/03/16 at 18:27:00
 
I felt I needed absorbers before the OBs and got noticeable improvements - mostly from bass traps but also at first reflection points.  They decay charts or whatever they call them in REW looked a lot better with them in place.  Not much echo in my room.

With the OBs I felt it was cutting down on the ambient sound too much, so I pulled the bass traps that were behind the Monoliths, catching some of the horn bass from those speakers.  I moved these to the rear of the room for now.

Next will come the diffusion experiments.  Where to put it, what kind, etc.  

While a PITA, I think room tuning is in order after major change.  It can be fun too, but I have been spending a lot of time tooling through the albums playing "I wonder how this track will sound."  Once I get sick of that, I will probably get more done.  

What would take me weeks, I could get done in an afternoon if I can get Rob and Eric over.   I am tagging songs for my OB demo list in Audirvana so I can show the good and not so good with these speakers.
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maddog07
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #20 - 02/03/16 at 18:33:30
 
Quote:
I wondered this myself, but decided to stick as close to the magic cable formula as I could.  I actually could not find a 1/2 watt, so I went with 1 watt.

BTW, I may have mentioned this before, but the 600 ohm is specifically for the Crown, not some other amp/plate amp.


I did some investigation on this... google "speaker level to line level" and pay particular attention to the url:

http://www.epanorama.net/circuits/speaker_to_line.html

what we are talking about here is a voltage divider it looks like, and for amplifiers of average gain, a 10k ohm resistor in series on the + conductor and a 1k resistor in parallel across + and - gives us a 1,000 ohm output impedance and a 20db reduction (10:1) attenuation.  If we substitute a volume pot for the 1K resistor... we have a "variable" attenuator.... which could be quite useful.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #21 - 02/03/16 at 18:42:26
 
Interesting.  You could dial in what your bass speaker amp likes.

I don't know how Dennis came up with 600 ohm as "the" amount of resistance other than through trial and error.

I should have the resistors by the weekend or Monday so I can give it a try.  

The El Cheapo does have an adjustment for each channel, but I turned it up to wide open because the Crown did not seem to be getting enough.  It needs +4dBu pro levels at the RCAs to work its best.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #22 - 02/03/16 at 22:33:15
 
I think its neat that we are sharing OB experiments.  I have been in touch with Randy for his insights.

Hopefully, others will weigh in or join the "brotherhood of the open baffle" (boob).
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #23 - 02/03/16 at 22:47:34
 
Palomino,
I'm working hard to play with the Boob's.
There are deals to be made acquiring the right kind of wood for the look I'm going for. The plan is that the edges will still have bark on them.
Driver selection is next, Wild Burro, Tang Band or even something else, who knows what can turn up.
I'm truly excited.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #24 - 02/03/16 at 23:01:50
 
Every time I go to the hardwood lumber yard I see those big slabs with the bark still on and fantasize about doing a project with one.  Could make for some cool OBs.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #25 - 02/04/16 at 14:08:24
 
I had a fun night last night messing around with these OBs.

On most songs, they pretty much disappear, but on others I get this weird “two plane” situation.  Behind the speakers I get a nice wide and very deep soundstage, but up front on the plane of the OBs, I’d get a second plane.  So overall, the soundstage would be disjointed.

So, with the advice given in this thread, I started playing again with toe in.  I started out with zero toe in.  The speakers disappeared.  But, the soundstage lost depth and I lost highs as I was even more off axis.  

So I went in an inch at a time to try to optimize the soundstage depth without the speakers re-appearing or getting the two plane situation.  I was also able to move my seating position back up to near where it used to be.  I am playing with the Torii treble shunt at the same time.  

I am not done optimizing these three levers as I got it to sounding pretty good and the speakers sucked me back in to just listening.  I tried again this morning and just sat there listening and tapping my toes.

So more toe in = soundstage depth (knew this going in) and flatter highs

Less toe in = less depth, but more disappearing, plus less highs (but also less shout on certain shouty songs)

I think this is good news for non Torii owners who might want to try this combination because I am running the Torii wide open on both the bass and treble dials.  I will probably try Rachael tonight to see how she sounds.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #26 - 02/05/16 at 14:56:14
 
Palomino,
   Can you attached the REW MDAT file? I would like to see whats going on. Do you do a REW when you make the Changes in position or equipment? I find it very interesting to see what the changes are doing to my FR, decay,....
JPV
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #27 - 02/05/16 at 15:02:34
 
I have done some measurements.  Documented them the best I could to keep track of what I did.  I'll mess around with it some more this weekend and try to be more disciplined.  I am an REW nube, but I do have a calibrated mic.

In general, I mostly see variations in the curve when I adjust the Torii.  I see changes in the decay rate when I mess with diffusers/absorbers.

I think what they are telling me now is elevated mid bass (Augies), elevation in the mids, and a flatter to lower highs.

I'll see what I can do this weekend.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #28 - 02/06/16 at 13:07:58
 
I got the resistors and made up a couple of magic cables.  Big difference vs the el cheapo auto line converter.  Better volume, weight and slam.  But also a significant amount of buzz.  I had to go back to the el cheapo.

I resoldered everything and tried a couple configurations to no a avail. Something I am missing.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #29 - 02/06/16 at 15:36:20
 
Was reading over this link provided earlier:

http://www.epanorama.net/circuits/speaker_to_line.html

This caught my eye:

Quote:
Remember that this circuit is designed only to be used with normal amplifiers which have common ground for speaker signals.


In my mind this is not very specific. Does this suggest that normal amplifiers are common between negative speaker posts? Or does this suggest common between negative speaker posts and the Chassis (earth ground)?

I took an Ohm meter to my SE84C+. No continuity between Left & Right negative speaker posts (not common). No continuity between Left or Right negative speaker post and chassis (floating speaker transformer ground)?

I'm assuming your Main amp and Crown amp are connected to the same power source (same Earth Ground)? If this is the case then technically there should be no voltage potential between the two amp chassis.

In other words if you put your voltage tester on AC Volts, 20 Volt Range then you should read 0.00 volts when touching one volt meter lead to the chassis of the Main amp and the other lead to the Crown amp.

If you get anything more than a few hundredths of a volt, try touching a wire or attaching a test lead between the two amp chassis to see if that makes any difference with the Buzzing.

Let's say you have 0.10 volts that is trying to get from Amp Chassis A to Amp Chassis B. Current will try to get from A to B via your Magic Cable possibly creating the Buzz you have. Attaching a separate lead between each amp chassis provides an alternate path with less resistance and might eliminate your Buzz ???

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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #30 - 02/06/16 at 16:48:18
 
Worth a try. Let me see if I can measure anything between the two amps.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #31 - 02/06/16 at 17:15:24
 
Do you use a power conditioner? Is everything in the system plugged into that or are some components plugged into other power sources?
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #32 - 02/06/16 at 17:54:57
 
Yes everything is plugged into the powerplant.   No buzz on the car stereo line converter.   Only with the magic cable.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #33 - 02/07/16 at 15:35:35
 
I tried a few things suggested for the buzz with the magic cable but no solution yet.  I am not done trying but taking a break on that front.  I did send Dennis at Hornshoppe a note to see if he could offer any insights since he came up with the idea.

The car stereo line converter works OK, just doesn't supply the juice to really make the Augies sing like the magic cable does.

I put Rachael in the system to see how she sounded.  I found I had to change the crossover point and increase the input sensitivity on the crown in order to fill out the mid to bottom end and bring it closer to the density of sound produced by the Torii.  I got the expected SET goodness, but I also have concerns that over time you would want the Torii treble shunt to reduce shout.  At a minimum, tube compliment would be important.

This has been an interesting project as it has given me experience in several new areas:

1. Open baffles (only flirted in this area before)
2. Bi-amping and specifically using a pro power amp to do so
4. Digital xover / finding the right sweet spot in terms of input sensitivity/crossover point
5. Speaker positioning / room treatments to make it all work

I tossed the DIY Monoliths back into the system for a little A/B.  I was worried that maybe I gave up some imaging and possibly some front to back soundstage.  Not so.  I don't think I gave up much if anything on the imaging and soundstage is improved in several areas.  Plus I gained detail, transparency and more/tighter low end.

I now think I am happy with these speakers.  Now to get some external confirmation.  Rob is going to try to swing by on Friday and I am still working on Eric.  Both have better and younger ears than me.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #34 - 02/07/16 at 16:39:11
 
Just a note: I had a Rachel with a treble cut circuit installed, it can be added.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #35 - 02/07/16 at 17:01:33
 
Pal,

I was looking at the Tang Band W8 1808 specs at 93db which is where my Omega Monitors are rated and the Eminence Alpha15A blends seamlessly with no crossover and no extra amp.

You might consider trying the Alpha15A's if they fit in your existing baffle cut-out ??? Looks like the Tang Bang is 8 Ohm so the Tang Bang & Alpha15A wired in parallel would be a 4 Ohm nominal load.

If I'm not mistaken the Crown does Analog to Digital conversion at it's input. Crossover is manipulated digitally and then a Digital to Analog conversion at the output plus extra cables and Speaker Level to Line Level conversion. That is a lot of audio signal Slicing & Dicing. It's kind of like turning a tomato into tomato juice and then reassembling it back into a tomato ???

Last night in my large listening room, I was listening at an average of 88 db with peaks to 93 db on two watts from my UFO.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #36 - 02/07/16 at 20:25:17
 
Yeah that's what had me concerned going in but the crown plus the augie is the best bass i have heard regardless of slicing and dicing of signal.  I am a horn guy who is not real crazy about crossovers to begin with.

I am open to trying the 15a's in a future build.  They are so inexpensive for what you get.  It's the driver the augies are based on I am pretty sure.  I see pure audio has their version of the augie now too.  I'm afraid I am hooked on bi amping though.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #37 - 02/07/16 at 20:26:38
 
Lon I did not know that. Thanks

Is it available on the zen?
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #38 - 02/07/16 at 20:52:00
 
When the Treble Cut Circuit was new Steve told me that the circuit could be added to any amp. Then the ZMA came out and he told me it could not be added to the ZMA. I think it may depend on the year of the Zen amp. . . and Steve is really the only one who can definitively answer.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #39 - 02/08/16 at 16:33:19
 
Pal...have you thought about using the FRX2 drivers?  I don't think you would need the treble cut circuit and the output of the Rachel's should be a perfect match.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #40 - 02/08/16 at 18:22:26
 
I gave the FRX2 a look.  Intriguing but a lot more expensive.

I am at a good spot with these speakers and intend to run them with the W8s via the Torii III.

It's only if I want to also run them via Rachael or some day a Zen that the W8 concerns me due to no treble shunt.  I do want some other ears on these to tell me if they feel the same way.

There is a possibility that you could also tame what I am hearing with tubes or other tweaks.  For example, ProgRob has a coax that provides a very even presentation.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #41 - 02/08/16 at 18:24:33
 
BTW, Dennis did get back to me about the magic cable, but he didn't have any ideas on what is causing the buzz.  So I am back to trying different things.

I may give Steve a call to see if he has any ideas.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #42 - 02/08/16 at 22:54:36
 
Pal,
Do you have a link to the schematic (or representative drawing) of the magic cable?
With my background I might be able to help troubleshoot.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #43 - 02/09/16 at 02:05:57
 
Thanks Core.  It is pretty simple.  See post #11 on the first page of this thread for a diagram.  It should show up but I have seen times where just the box with an x in it shows up.

It's a 600 ohm resistor soldered to the center pin of an RCA Jack.  The other end of the resistor is soldered to a wire which goes to the positive speaker terminal on the Torii.  

Then another wire soldered to the shield of the RCA.  That wire is connected to the negative speaker terminal on the Torii.   Repeat for the other channel.  

The RCAs are then plugged into the left and right input jacks on the crown amp.  The 600 ohm seems to knock the speaker level input to just what the crown needs.

I need to figure this out because it is much better using the magic cable.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #44 - 02/09/16 at 14:29:42
 
Last night I just accepted the buzz and listened to music.  Yes, it was there when I hit a quiet passage or between songs and yes it was annoying, but I have one word to describe the bass from this Crown/Augie setup:  sublime.  In fact its so addicting that I am going to live with the buzz rather than go back to the el cheapo line converter.

I have about 30 tracks in my collection that I like for testing bass and last night I listened to them all and was glued to my listening chair.  This morning I listened to Daft Punk Random Access Memories in 24/96.  I have to be in the right mood for this album, but it has great bass and again, it captivated me.

So, I am scanning the web for buzz solutions.  There is a fair amount out there on the Crown amp but no definitive solution yet.

So other facts that may help someone help with with this issue:

1.  I get the buzzing when the Crown amp is off.  It is amplified and changes tone once I turn it on.

2.  I have plugged the Crown into an entirely different circuit in my room and it is about 5X worse than when it is plugged into the Power Plant Premiere.

If I get a chance tonight, I will try a shielded cable and also see if I get the same buzz going through my plate amp to the Crown.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #45 - 02/09/16 at 14:34:42
 
Silly question: do you have cable TV/internet service connected to this system? The only time I had a strong buzz I could not eradicate it turned out to be traveling along the cable line and I installed a filter. . .dead silent thereafter.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #46 - 02/09/16 at 14:58:32
 
Looking at the connections I would suspect the ground of the Crown RCA jack is feeding back and creating a ground loop via the speaker connection. You could measure the RCA jack ground on the Crown to the chassis to see if it is a direct connection to your power amp.
I'm not that familiar with the Crown internals but if it is a direct chassis connection you could try adding a series 50 ohm resistor in the shield path back to the speaker negative instead of a straight wire (as part of your magic cable).
One thing for sure, be careful when isolating grounds between chassis that could be floating and then touching both at the same time.
You do not want to be the thing that completes the circuit!  :)
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #47 - 02/09/16 at 15:23:35
 
Good suggestions Core.

There is something in the el cheapo line converter that is preventing this loop because it is dead silent when hooked up.  Could be the resistor you suggest.  I am tempted to open it up and see.

To be clear, I want a wire going from the Crown RCA input "outer plug" to the Crown chassis?  What should I set my multi-meter for and what would be a significant reading?
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #48 - 02/09/16 at 15:31:35
 
Dang. I have no way of adding a drawing here at work....
To measure, disconnect everything from the Crown, power cables, etc.
Then set the meter to Ohms and measure between the RCA input that the magic cable was plugged into, outer (shield) and the Crown chassis.
If it's not isolated you will get a pretty small #, like less than 5 ohms.
The 50 ohm, if you decide to try it, would be in series with the "other" wire going back to the speaker negative from the Crown RCA.
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Re: Palomino Audio Project
Reply #49 - 02/09/16 at 15:32:00
 
Quote:
Pal wrote:

So other facts that may help someone help with with this issue:

1.  I get the buzzing when the Crown amp is off.  It is amplified and changes tone once I turn it on.

2.  I have plugged the Crown into an entirely different circuit in my room and it is about 5X worse than when it is plugged into the Power Plant Premiere.


Above, #1 and especially #2 suggest a ground loop.

I'm not sure how your power plant handles earth ground? Just to be sure that it has nothing to do with the power plant I suggest just as a test plug everything into the same circuit without the power plant.

Using an Ohm Meter I would expect continuity (0 resistance) between the power pant metal chassis and the power plant power cord Earth Ground prong. Should also have 0 resistance from each power plant outlet Earth Ground socket (supplying your components) to power plant power cord Earth Ground prong.

The RCA plugs on your Decware and Crown consist of the outer Jacket and inner socket. You should find the jackets are strapped to Earth Ground. Using an Ohm meter there should be total continuity (no resistance) from any RCA jacket to the metal chassis on each amp.

With everything plugged into your power plant, up-plug the power plant from the wall circuit. You should have total continuity (0 resistance) from each amps RCA jackets to Earth Ground prong on the power plant power cord.

For instance if you have 0 Ohms from Decware amp chassis to power plant Earth Ground and 50 Ohms from Decware amp chassis to power plant Earth Ground this could be an issue.



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