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PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2018 7:13 am 
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Just completed the final tuning of the new Daalek I speaker system, a collaborative effort by myself (overall design, driver selection), Steve Kranis of Audio Hardware (passive crossover design and build, active crossover tuning), and Joe Stewart of Stewart Speaker Systems (cabinetmaker).

The heart of the Daalek I is the 18 kg, 100 dB sensitivity, 12-inch, Tannoy SuperDual driver (Type 3145), in a 2 cu.ft. sealed cabinet, actively crossed over at 100 Hz to the LF module, with the passive crossover between the mid-range cone and the compression driver at 1400 Hz.

Frequencies below 100 Hz are handled by the 18-inch TAD TL-1801, housed in a 7.5 cu.ft., cross-braced, slot-loaded, birch plywood cabinet.

The active crossover is the venerable dbx DriveRack 4820. Amplifiers are the Crown K2 for the LF and the Yamaha P7000S for the MF/HF.

Overall system sensitivity is around 97 dB. Power handling is 800 Wrms for the LF module and 400 Wrms for the mid-hi module. Frequency response (+/- 3 dB) is 30 Hz to 20 kHz. Clarity and detail are breathtaking, dynamics and slam verge on frightening.

This is the type of speaker system that can play delicate vocal music at background listening levels or screaming rock 'n' roll at concert volume levels or anything in between.

All speaker components were purchased used, except for the passive crossovers, which were custom designed from new parts.

Have I equalled or bettered the Meyer Sound Labs X-10T/X-400C, my reference for pristine audio reproduction? No, but the Daalek Is are close, and at a tiny fraction of the price. . .

Happy listening all!


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2018 7:42 am 
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Impressive work. How much these mothers weigh?

I personally like big driver systems, but hold on for the crowd of nay-sayers that will surely follow in this thread.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2018 8:17 am 
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natedog,

They're actually not as heavy as one might expect.

The bass modules weigh maybe 65 kg (with 12 kg of that the weight of the driver).

The front and rear baffles are 1.5 inches thick, the other panels 0.75 inches. But it's the 360 degree bracing devised by Joe Stewart that makes the cabinet less resonant than others I've got which use thicker panels. Plus, void-free birch plywood, while stiffer than MDF, weighs about 15-20% less.

The mid-hi modules weigh about 30 kg (with 18 kg from the driver).

Part of the reason for doing the build in two cabinets was to avoid 100 kg cabinets. The other reason was that it's easy, with two cabinets, to mix 'n' match. For example, matching the TAD LF unit with the JBL 2450SL compression driver and 2332 horn, or trying the SuperDual module with another pair of woofer cabinets I have (dual JBL 2235H).

As for those "naysayers" to whom you refer who don't like big drivers, what's not to like? It's the performance that matters. Now if I could get the performance I enjoy with the Daalek Is from speakers the size of breadboxes, I'd jump at the chance. Otherwise, if you want to achieve anything close to the impact of a live performance—always my point of reference—mini-monitors just aren't going to satisfy. Beyond that, the Daaleks excel at low SPLs as much as they do at high SPLs, though the latter is, by its nature, always more, shall we say, dramatic. . .

But of course I recognize that many people don't have the freedom I have when it comes to playing music when they want, how they want. It may be great to drive a Maserati, but if the owner can never take it out on the highway, it's no surprise if they decide it's not worth the time, trouble, and expense. . .

P.S.: Sorry about the sideways photo: don't know how it got that way or how to rotate it. . .


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2018 8:30 am 
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8)
If only I had the room...


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Last edited by KJT1 on Wed Oct 17, 2018 8:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2018 8:31 am 
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Thank you KJT1!

[BTW, brilliant motto!]


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2018 9:26 am 
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dr.joe wrote:
Have I equalled or bettered the Meyer Sound Labs X-10T/X-400C, my reference for pristine audio reproduction? No, but the Daalek Is are close, and at a tiny fraction of the price. . .


Those are Very nice looking speakers -- they remind me of the old B&W 803.

Quite possibly the HF Amplifier could be improved upon to decrease the performance gap?

PS: After looking at the A7, it occurred to me that one could build a Horn for the LF unit that could be positioned in front of the woofer, with "wings" that could touch the front baffle of the box to ensure an air-tight fit......

I've always thought that in your space, a pure horn system would be fantastic.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2018 9:57 am 
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Hi dr.joe
I have read many posts from you,you seem to mingle with pro audio gear a lot. Also what do you mean you have the freedom to play music how you want when you want? The few times I raised the volume on my system beyond acceptable ,I got the police knocking at my door .In the beginning I complied but kept pushing the boundaries ,then one day I was served a warning letter in the mail from City Of Toronto warning me of the by laws for noise and a thread of lawsuit and a fine. You are in Toronto,aren't you? Unless you live in an industrial loft or warehouse ,how can you get away? You think neighbors care to listen to others people tastes in music? Also as is well known anything over 80db or 85db depending upon which guidance source you follow,can be bad for long term hearing. The chart says 80 db - 85 db for 8 hours exposure ,any increase of 3db ,you need to cut down exposure by half . I can't see the point going over 90db .I am not arguing just looking for a reasonable explanation.
Cheers
George


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:09 am 
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Yiorgos wrote:
Hi dr.joe
I have read many posts from you,you seem to mingle with pro audio gear a lot. Also what do you mean you have the freedom to play music how you want when you want? The few times I raised the volume on my system beyond acceptable ,I got the police knocking at my door .In the beginning I complied but kept pushing the boundaries ,then one day I was served a warning letter in the mail from City Of Toronto warning me of the by laws for noise and a thread of lawsuit and a fine. You are in Toronto,aren't you? Unless you live in an industrial loft or warehouse ,how can you get away? You think neighbors care to listen to others people tastes in music? Also as is well known anything over 80db or 85db depending upon which guidance source you follow,can be bad for long term hearing. The chart says 80 db - 85 db for 8 hours exposure ,any increase of 3db ,you need to cut down exposure by half . I can't see the point going over 90db .I am not arguing just looking for a reasonable explanation.
Cheers
George


Dr. Joe has soundproofed his loft. The volume inside the loft can be above concert volumes, while being undetectable elsewhere.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:20 am 
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Erik wrote:
Yiorgos wrote:
Hi dr.joe
I have read many posts from you,you seem to mingle with pro audio gear a lot. Also what do you mean you have the freedom to play music how you want when you want? The few times I raised the volume on my system beyond acceptable ,I got the police knocking at my door .In the beginning I complied but kept pushing the boundaries ,then one day I was served a warning letter in the mail from City Of Toronto warning me of the by laws for noise and a thread of lawsuit and a fine. You are in Toronto,aren't you? Unless you live in an industrial loft or warehouse ,how can you get away? You think neighbors care to listen to others people tastes in music? Also as is well known anything over 80db or 85db depending upon which guidance source you follow,can be bad for long term hearing. The chart says 80 db - 85 db for 8 hours exposure ,any increase of 3db ,you need to cut down exposure by half . I can't see the point going over 90db .I am not arguing just looking for a reasonable explanation.
Cheers
George


Dr. Joe has soundproofed his loft. The volume inside the loft can be above concert volumes, while being undetectable elsewhere.


:roll: Hi yes that would take care of the neighbors complaining but the dangerous decibels exposure remains an issue.
George


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:59 am 
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Despite the SPL capabilities, it is nice to capably reproduce the full listening frequency at actual live performance volume levels.

At a concert last night, SPL's were hovering in the low 80's dB range. It was great.

Never understood the purpose for deafening concerts. Goddo playing at the GTA high schools in the early 80's caused many a ringing ear and temporary hearing loss. The music had tons of energy, but in retrospect the fact that schools allowed the deafening levels was ridiculous. They should have known better that was 1981.

That speaker design looks to be very capable, at least potentially.

Regards to the Dr. Who reference, I do see the similarity! LOL

Will there be a special edition Golden Daalek? I loved killing Daaleks on my Dr Who pinball machine. Sorry I sold it.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2018 1:52 pm 
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Erik wrote:
.

Quite possibly the HF Amplifier could be improved upon to decrease the performance gap?

That's a reasonable comment. After all, the Yamaha P7000S is a PA amplifier. And yet after almost half-a-century of buying the best audiophile amps I could afford, I find I have jettisoned them all—with one exception—in favor of amps that should, but don't, sound like shyte. Perhaps the oddest thing about my use of the P7000S is that it was first suggested to me by a tube enthusiast. I couldn't really take him seriously until I auditioned his system. I'd put my one precious audiophile amp into the system—the First Watt F5 Turbo v3—except that it's already doing yeoman's duty in another of my systems!

PS: After looking at the A7, it occurred to me that one could build a Horn for the LF unit that could be positioned in front of the woofer, with "wings" that could touch the front baffle of the box to ensure an air-tight fit......

Remember, though, the A7 achieves very little output below 50 Hz. To get a horn to reproduce flat down to 30 Hz (my personal requirement for the LF section), ones needs something like the Tannoy Westminster's 520 litre cabinet, not really an option for where I have the Daalek 1s set-up. Even so-called full-range horn systems, like the Avant-Gardes, don't attempt to get the horn to do the bottom octaves. Not that it can't be done; but, even with the help I get, I'm not ready to take on that project!

P.S.: Great to see you back on the forums, Erik!

-- Wed Oct 17, 2018 4:00 pm --

Yiorgos wrote:
Hi dr.joe
I have read many posts from you,you seem to mingle with pro audio gear a lot. Also what do you mean you have the freedom to play music how you want when you want? The few times I raised the volume on my system beyond acceptable ,I got the police knocking at my door .In the beginning I complied but kept pushing the boundaries ,then one day I was served a warning letter in the mail from City Of Toronto warning me of the by laws for noise and a thread of lawsuit and a fine. You are in Toronto,aren't you? Unless you live in an industrial loft or warehouse ,how can you get away? You think neighbors care to listen to others people tastes in music? Also as is well known anything over 80db or 85db depending upon which guidance source you follow,can be bad for long term hearing. The chart says 80 db - 85 db for 8 hours exposure ,any increase of 3db ,you need to cut down exposure by half . I can't see the point going over 90db .I am not arguing just looking for a reasonable explanation.
Cheers
George


Hi George,

In fact, yes I do live in an industrial loft which, as another poster has already mentioned, I have soundproofed (not completely but considerably). I regularly check with my neighbours about whether I am disturbing them, as I consider it an absolute requirement that I get on well with them. Being on good terms with one's neighbours is, to me, an important part of life. So far (nine years), it's worked out well.

Also, I would not want to leave the impression that I routinely listen at concert-level volumes. But for me it's extremely important to have the choice. Just as I like to have the choice to go see live performances by bands I really like. I play music a lot, since I mostly work from home, but the vast majority of the time it's in that 80 to 90 dB range you mention. Moreover, if you prefer not to expose yourself to SPLs above 90 dB, then you can never attend live concerts—at least not any of the bands I've seen in the past several years. I just enjoy the option to host my own "live concerts" in my own home. But, like going to a concert, they're special events.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:21 pm 
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I think headroom and almost zero power compression is important to Joel.

G


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2018 3:45 pm 
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I should hasten to add that the Daaleks also excel at low and moderate listening levels—at least to my ears and in comparison with my other systems. And, of course, like most, 95% of the time I'm listening at low or moderate volumes. In fact, in terms of hours-per-week of "playing time," I probably listen to more radio than to music.

Time-aligned and phase-correct combines with high sensitivity so that dynamic contrasts are vivid even at low SPLs. There's a brilliant discussion of this phenomenon in a recent post on the http://www.audioheritage.org forums; but I can't seem to find it again! Will keep looking. . .

-- Wed Oct 17, 2018 5:57 pm --

sasquatch wrote:
I think headroom and almost zero power compression is important to Joel.

G


Definitely!

I still remember the first time I heard a pair of speakers that sounded the same at all listening levels. (Odd way to put it, but can't think of another way just now.)

It was only years later I understood that this was a "symptom" of much reduced power compression! And it's the low frequencies where it's hardest to keep the compression to a minimum. Hence the 800 Wpc amp feeding the 97 dB speakers. The benefits are real at low volumes as much as at high. But I won't go there. . .


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2018 4:28 pm 
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I'm going to assume on dynamic material that your system doesn't necessarily get louder
but bigger,wider,deeper when you turn up the volume control.

It's a different kind of SPL.

G


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2018 5:18 pm 
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Rock on brother. I am in your camp, big rig with lots of power. some music specially hard rock are meant to be played loud. and don t let anybody tell you otherwise. it s a free country, to many people tell other what to or what not to do in this country.live and let live . you can even now, smoke a nice dooby and enjoy that great rig while listening to the gig in the sky. it is now legal to be different.


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