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Today’s Show:

DIY Speaker Project

The HT Guys are very DIY oriented and we love new projects! When some of our listeners emailed us about their DIY speakers we just had build one ourselves. Many of you told us about Parts Express, an online retailer for electronics, and how they have some nice speaker kits. For our first build we didn’t want to get too fancy so we went with one that didn’t require any assembly of the speaker cabinet but did require some soldering.

Dayton Audio BR-1 6-1/2″ 2-Way Bookshelf Monitor Speaker Kit Pair $160 with no shipping costs. The Kit includes:

  • Dayton Audio BR-1CAB BR-1 6-1/2″ 2-Way Speaker Cabinet Pair
  • Two Dayton Audio DC160-8 6-1/2″ woofers
  • Two Dayton Audio DC28F-8 1-1/8″ silk dome tweeters
  • Two crossover boards
  • All the required capacitors, resistors, inductors, and cables

To build this kit you’ll need a soldering iron, solder, hot glue gun, wire cutters/strippers, and a screwdriver. Parts Express has some great online video showing you how to build your speakers that we found extremely valuable.

We put a quick video together not so much for how to purposes but so you get a better feel for the speakers and what is involved in the process.

For $160 and a few hours you end up with speakers that sound and look great! We are very impressed with the sound that these speakers create. We tested them down to 50 Hz on the low end and 16KHz on the high end. Ara’s daughters had to confirm audio tones beyond 12KHz. The specification says the speakers produce sound between 43Hz and 18KHz.

When we listened to music we were surprised by how much bass they would produce. Highs were good but the speakers performed better on the low end. They aren’t the most efficient speakers but they aren’t that bad either with a sensitivity rating of 88 dB 1W/1m. We have no problem saying that they perform as well as speakers that cost two or three times more.

But here is the cool thing! If you want you can design your own speaker by picking woofers, tweeters, and crossovers that are more to your liking, you can! Parts Express sells fully assembled crossovers so that you don’t even have to solder. If you want to spend $1,000 on components you can. Likewise if all you need are some inexpensive speakers with good sound you can spend less. We can’t wait to try different woofers and tweeters and build out an entire 7.1 set including the subwoofer. The only complaint is that there aren’t some smaller prebuilt speaker cabinets. Maybe its time to go to some yard sales and pick up old speakers and turn them into something incredible!

Download Episode #670


Posted by The HT Guys, January 16, 2015 2:54 AM

About The HT Guys

The HT Guys, Ara Derderian and Braden Russell, are Engineers who formerly worked for the Advanced Digital Systems Group (ADSG) of Sony Pictures Entertainment. ADSG was the R&D unit of the sound department producing products for movie theaters and movie studios.

Two of the products they worked on include the DCP-1000 and DADR-5000. The DCP is a digital cinema processor used in movie theaters around the world. The DADR-5000 is a disk-based audio dubber used on Hollywood sound stages.

ADSG was awarded a Technical Academy Award by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in 2000 for the development of the DADR-5000. Ara holds three patents for his development work in Digital Cinema and Digital Audio Recording.

Every week they put together a podcast about High Definition TV and Home Theater. Each episode brings news from the A/V world, helpful product reviews and insights and help in demystifying and simplifying HDTV and home theater.