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  • 2 channel DIY

    My reef tank is being torn down and sold off....too much work and as my audio addiction has become increasingly more obsessive over the past 4 years I have spent less time and my interest in the tank has decreased. This is all to say that I am selling it all and when is all said and done with the 150 gallon tank out of the office I will have room and some money to be able to setup a fairly decent 2 channel rig in my office.

    Here is what I am planning on doing I would like to build a Tube preamp and I will need an amp of some type...probably a class T amp.

    For speakers I am torn...I am really thinking about 2 different options. First is going with a full DIY option single driver option... the Zigmahornets with a Fostex fe103e or Fostex Fe107e driver. The second option is the GR Research N1x or N2x diy kits with the Parts express cabinets. In the end I might start with the Gr Research speakers, they are more expensive by a long shot, and then down the road build the Ziggies. Both designs interest me because they would provide me with a speaker type that I have never had but am interested in. The GR research has the Planar ribbon tweeters which really interest me. The ziggies are a full range driver with no crossover. Basically I am torn what to do.

    So here are the items I am looking at for both amp/preamp and speakers.

    BottleHead foreplay preamp
    Class T amp to pair with preamp

    Speaker Enclosure for GR speakers
    GR Research N2X kit

    Zigmahornets with a different driver
    The fostex Driver I would use


    So the reason I post all this is because I want advice from all of you.
    Do you think this preamp matched to the amp has good potential?
    Do you think the combo would sound good with either of these speakers?
    Do you guys think these speaker options are good ideas?
    Do any of you have any other options that are in the same price ranges for either the speakers or amp/preamp combinations?

    As always thanks for you your input.

  • #2
    Hey MP,

    I have a reef tank myself where are you located?
    You have any cool frags or coral friendly fish you want to donate:sly:

    Oh and sorry for being a little off topic.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by blackcuda
      Hey MP,

      I have a reef tank myself where are you located?
      You have any cool frags or coral friendly fish you want to donate:sly:

      Oh and sorry for being a little off topic.
      Michigan.....I actually will be putting everything I have up for sale soon on Michiganreefers.com....I am keeping the fish and already gave the non standard corals to a few of my friends...all I have left is some pieces that look bad or are so common that you can pick up frags locally for less than shipping would cost. But I do have a whole slew of equipment....litremeter, kalk stirrer, ozonizer, mh lights, 2 vortek pumps, protein skimmer, ro unit, sump, and of course the tank it is a 150 gallon deep dimensiontank measuring 36"wide x 36"length x 27"tall with stand and canopy.

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      • #4
        Jay,

        I have the Neo2x and really like them....I had demoed the Neo1x from danny but I needed to go the sealed route so I went with the Neoe2x.
        I am actually thinking of moving all my speakers out and going with the Neo3x and neo3 center channel but still debating on it and if I go that route trying to figure out what color/veneer I would go with.

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        • #5
          My favorite kind of thread. "thumbsup:

          What I have experience with similar to what you have listed:
          Tripath
          I have the Virtue Two which has auricaps and the same chip as the PE amp and have compared it to the Virtue One which I had here for awhile.
          To my ears the caps made a big difference. I like the auricaps much better than the stock caps in the Virtue One. Danny Richie is going to be providing the Virtue One with sonicaps. I asked him about his opinion on the difference between the sonicaps and auricaps and he prefers the sonicaps in all the applications he has tried them in over the auricaps.
          If you want to DIY on the amp I have found two options:
          41hz - this is total DIY and requires quite a bit of skill to assemble the boards (I have not done one myself).
          http://www.41hz.com/shop/category.asp?catid=2
          ConnexElectronics - assembled boards. A good place to start with and then start swapping out parts. I have one of their tripath boards sitting in a box waiting for me to put together the amp.
          http://connexelectronic.com/index.ph...532jvvcmvdd4i0
          http://www.diyaudio.com/forums/connexelectronic/

          Speakers
          I have compared the Neo 2x demo kit with sonicaps and mills resistors to my strata minis and they beat the stock mini hands down (sub required with Neo 2x). The Neo driver is uber detailed without being clinical in any way. I really like that driver and have a Neo 3 flat pack to replace my ref 100. I haven't decided to ninja master my minis or replace with Neo 3.

          Cabinets
          There are too many good cabinet makers out there to go with the PE boxes. I used elemental designs for prebuilt unfinished boxes for my GR AV-1RS and veneered them myself. They are great to work with. It won't be as cheap as the PE box, but you will get a much better box. For a bookshelf it would be pretty easy to assemble a flat pack.

          Have fun. :D

          Comment


          • #6
            N2X are fantastic speakers. Highly recommend.

            As for amps...

            Aikido preamps are another good option.

            For power amps: First Watt F5 (low powered option), the Class D amp being talked about on Audiocircle, or a good Chipamp/Gainclone would be fantastic and inexpensive options. The F5 sounds incredible with the N2X.
            "Sometimes I think the surest sign that intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us."

            -Bill Watterson

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            • #7
              I already have a DIY class d amp...here is thread from my build http://forums.av123.com/showthread.php?t=33972

              the only reason I was thinking of getting something bigger is that if I go with the n2x speakers there efficiency is only 85db...so I am concerned that at 15watts it won't be enough power. But my intent is definitely to start the whole project by building the speakers then the tube preamp then add if necessary add a more powerful amp to the mix.

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              • #8
                Would it make more sense to skimp on electronics and go with a servo sub?
                "Sometimes I think the surest sign that intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us."

                -Bill Watterson

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Cujobob
                  Would it make more sense to skimp on electronics and go with a servo sub?
                  I have no clue as I know nothing about servo subs.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Do you have room for the N3? It is the same size as a bookshelf on stands and gives you 90.5db sensitivity and a -3db at 40hz. You can arrange the port for either front or rear firing.
                    Originally posted by Monkeypimp
                    I already have a DIY class d amp...here is thread from my build http://forums.av123.com/showthread.php?t=33972

                    the only reason I was thinking of getting something bigger is that if I go with the n2x speakers there efficiency is only 85db...so I am concerned that at 15watts it won't be enough power. But my intent is definitely to start the whole project by building the speakers then the tube preamp then add if necessary add a more powerful amp to the mix.
                    BTW: nice job on that amp. :yes:

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by dvenardos
                      Do you have room for the N3? It is the same size as a bookshelf on stands and gives you 90.5db sensitivity and a -3db at 40hz. You can arrange the port for either front or rear firing.


                      BTW: nice job on that amp. :yes:
                      Thanks for the props on the amp!!


                      The N3 are a possibility. My biggest problem is that I have no problems with doing all the electronics part of the DIY...I just can't do what I would consider to be worthy of being out on the cabinets. So if I can find cabinets that are reasonably priced then i am not opposed the N3's. :rock:

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                      • #12
                        How much can you spend on cabinets?
                        Also, if the main issue is sensitivity you can do the sealed version of the N3.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I'm interested in this too. I have one of Bill'l amps and one of his pre-amps and am thinking about the N3's (Don's fault). What's the difference between the sealed and un-sealed N3's? Right now I have Elite Ninja Encore X-LS and x-sub which I like but the bass is boomy. I don't know if it is my room or the speakers... Also the X-LS don't do it for classical, would the N3's be better?

                          Somebody get me real excited about the N3's...

                          And to Monkeypimp's post, is it "normal" to pair an expensive pre-amp with an in-expensive amp?

                          I have a Gizmo now which is 25 watts, I'll try comparing it to the sure amp.

                          Also to Monkeypimp, did you every switch caps in your sure amp?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by dvenardos
                            How much can you spend on cabinets?
                            Also, if the main issue is sensitivity you can do the sealed version of the N3.
                            Well to be honest I am not sure how much I can spend. I really don't need anything that is uber cool or some special veneer. A nice satin or Piano black, a basic rosewood type veneer would be fine. I am really trying to do a super nice 2 channel rig on the cheap. I figure at around 4-5 hundred for the speaker kit(depends on if I do the upgrades). The tube preamp/amp around 4-6 hundred. So I would like to spend no more than 3 hundred on the boxes, not sure if this is possible, that is why I was looking at the n2x.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by django1
                              Also to Monkeypimp, did you every switch caps in your sure amp?
                              I did a little bit of switching...don't remember which caps it was but they all did sound different for sure. My favorite were huge and wouldn't fit in the enclosure so I ended up sticking with the Vishays that I started with.

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