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Brandon Hartwick

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I might just build a set of poor man's Renaissance 15A's for now and call it a day. After all these vet bills I'm much less enthusiastic about dumping another several thousand or so on woofers and everything that goes along with a tower of woofers. The panels are basically the same size and I have some sources for 15" woofers.


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Robert D

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That's rough man, hopefully they have better luck in the future, 6 years is pretty short for most cats.
Yes it is. The one we have left now is probably about 9 years old now, i lost track. lol. He is healthy.

Cardiomyopathy runs in the breed. Problems are more common because the population size of the breed is so small and recessive traits you dont want start to build up. The longer the breed is around, the better. We bought them because the breed is so friendly and because they dont really bother our allergies. Its nice too having no hair to clean up. Sphynx are a very needy breed though, and if you dont want to spend lots of time with them then its best not to get one. They cry like babies if you dont give them attention,lol. My first cat Gonzo used to always climb up my back and onto my shoulders, That hurts! But it was fun having a cat sit on you like a parrot. I miss him.

All of them are very friendly with strangers, and a couple of times guys working in our house found the cats sitting on their shoulders.
 

Robert D

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If money seems a bit tight now, why not just wait and put the rest on hold until you have more $$ to spend? You dont need these right now, you have other speakers. I forget what youre listening to now.

Ive not listened to any music now for about 1 week. I have had covid-19 bad and didnt really feel like listening. It made my tinnitus worse too!
 

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I might just build a set of poor man's Renaissance 15A's for now and call it a day. After all these vet bills I'm much less enthusiastic about dumping another several thousand or so on woofers and everything that goes along with a tower of woofers. The panels are basically the same size and I have some sources for 15" woofers
First, those frames are very nice, congrats!

As for woofage, sure, start with just a woofer box below the panel, then when you are ready, do the tower.
As for the woofer, avoid 'subwoofer' drivers with high moving mass (Mms), as you need to go clean up into the 500Hz range with this driver. It also means that an f3 of 70Hz or so is what you wind up with with a sealed design, which should be OK when used with a subwoofer.
 

Brandon Hartwick

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If money seems a bit tight now, why not just wait and put the rest on hold until you have more $$ to spend? You dont need these right now, you have other speakers. I forget what youre listening to now.

Ive not listened to any music now for about 1 week. I have had covid-19 bad and didnt really feel like listening. It made my tinnitus worse too!
It's not really just about funds, it's party about space and what I actually need for my room. I have a set of modded Aerius I's and they're honestly plenty for my space, but these parts fell into my lap so I'm looking to make a project out of them.
 

Brandon Hartwick

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First, those frames are very nice, congrats!

As for woofage, sure, start with just a woofer box below the panel, then when you are ready, do the tower.
As for the woofer, avoid 'subwoofer' drivers with high moving mass (Mms), as you need to go clean up into the 500Hz range with this driver. It also means that an f3 of 70Hz or so is what you wind up with with a sealed design, which should be OK when used with a subwoofer.
Yeah I'm shooting for a crossover point around 300hz with a 24bd/octave active slope so subwoofers are out of the question. Dayton makes some really nice linear woofers so I'll likely go that route. I'm still debating on if I'm going to do rear firing woofers or not.

Everything is still up in the air and I've made no purchases or decisions. I'm open to ideas.
 

Brandon Hartwick

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Those are looking great Brandon. I have a friend that is building base towers right now using the same drivers that Rockport is using in the Orion. I will keep you updated on how they work out.
Nice! That would be very interesting to see, keep me posted for sure.
 

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I was all fired up and excited to see and hear your reports about the speakers you planned with the woofer stack up in an array! I didnt realize you feel like you dont really need that. Whatever you do I am sure it will sound great. If you put on just the one woofer, do you think you will end up eventually rebuilding it with the array?
 

Brandon Hartwick

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I was all fired up and excited to see and hear your reports about the speakers you planned with the woofer stack up in an array! I didnt realize you feel like you dont really need that. Whatever you do I am sure it will sound great. If you put on just the one woofer, do you think you will end up eventually rebuilding it with the array?
I will still be designing a woofer line array but will be saving it for another time, maybe another space.

Today I purchased a pair of Fame Sovereign Pro 12-500 woofers for bass reinforcement. These are 12" pro audio drivers with nice upper bass specs and great pricing. I'm going to do a 2 cubic foot ported box tuned to 50hz.

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Today I purchased a pair of Fame Sovereign Pro 12-500 woofers for bass reinforcement. These are 12" pro audio drivers with nice upper bass specs and great pricing. I'm going to do a 2 cubic foot ported box tuned to 50hz.
Nice, that should work nicely and have a decent mid-bass punch.

If you ever do the woofer array, you can redeploy these as MidBass Modules behind the seats.
I'm still amazed at how much adding the MBMs did for my system, not the least being the ability to run at a lower overall volume setting. Something my tinnitus appreciates, and so might your neighbors 😉
 

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Hi Brandon, Do you have the capability to make the cabinet using some metal work integrated with other materials to make your cab really inert? How rigid are your frames shown above? I have to use sound anchors stands on my speaker to make the frames more rigid. I don't know anyone with your capability. I think you are on to something.
I built a 12" cabinet for the Morel TiCW1258FT by buying a pro 18" bass cabinet and adding about 40 pounds of material to it for bracing and adding to the front panel, getting rid of the bass reflex port in the process. Real homemade stuff unlike what you and JonFo are doing.
 

Brandon Hartwick

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Hi Brandon, Do you have the capability to make the cabinet using some metal work integrated with other materials to make your cab really inert? How rigid are your frames shown above? I have to use sound anchors stands on my speaker to make the frames more rigid. I don't know anyone with your capability. I think you are on to something.
I built a 12" cabinet for the Morel TiCW1258FT by buying a pro 18" bass cabinet and adding about 40 pounds of material to it for bracing and adding to the front panel, getting rid of the bass reflex port in the process. Real homemade stuff unlike what you and JonFo are doing.
I definitely could do steel internal bracing but I've tried this before and it caused more problems than it solved. A while back I built a laser cut steel skeleton that was supposed to be clad with 3/4" MDF, but unless your cuts are absolutely perfect fitment is really poor and the whole thing is just a huge pain to put together.

I'll probably do a very well braced MDF enclosure for the woofer and have it fit nicely under the panel.

My panel frames are pretty rigid, the steel mesh stators become part of the structure when it's all together. When they're finished they'll have large bases to support everything.
 

Brandon Hartwick

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Got my woofers today, outstanding quality gear from Fane Audio. The paper cones are only 84 grams so they should provide some nice snappy mid bass.

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Original ML Quest woofer to the right, it's basically made of cheese in comparison.
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Original ML Quest woofer to the right, it's basically made of cheese in comparison.
Yep, the woofers from that vintage of MLs were shockingly 'average'. The original Monolith woofers (12" eminence) were well below the standards needed for the design.

That is why I encourage swaps whenever someone is willing to try.
 

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Yep, the woofers from that vintage of MLs were shockingly 'average'. The original Monolith woofers (12" eminence) were well below the standards needed for the design.

That is why I encourage swaps whenever someone is willing to try.
Whats your opinion of the original Prodigy woofers? Were they any good? Mine sound good to me, but I wonder if I would be well served replacing them. Hate to do it just to be doing it though. They are original and 22 years old now.
 

Brandon Hartwick

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Whats your opinion of the original Prodigy woofers? Were they any good? Mine sound good to me, but I wonder if I would be well served replacing them. Hate to do it just to be doing it though. They are original and 22 years old now.
If you're not running active crossovers I'd leave them alone. The original woofers will match the ESL panels output and response, careful consideration should be taken if you're going to swap them out.

If you like how they sound that's all that really matters. My aerius panels are from the early 90s and I don't plan on replacing them.
 

Brandon Hartwick

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My life is returning to normal and I'm back at home now that my cat is well enough be on her own through the day. I've been gathering parts and doing lots of CAD work developing the rest of the speaker. I've decided to move to a sealed enclosure as opposed to vented due to the very narrow 350hz to 60hz range the woofer is playing.

Big thanks to Jazzman53 for the advice on using off the shelf toroidal transformers wired together to get the correct ratio as well as having the wiring diagram on his website. It has been quite the learning experience starting with a pile of used ML Quest speaker parts and basically reverse engineering all the electronics. Ron over at the Martin Logan tech service department also deserves a shout out as he was a huge help in repairing and testing my power supply boards.

Both panels have been tested and confirmed working so now it's full steam ahead on getting everything else finished. I have the drawings done for the woofer enclosures and might get them made this week if time allows.

Transformer wiring from Jazzman
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Big thanks to Jazzman53 for the advice on using off the shelf toroidal transformers wired together to get the correct ratio as well as having the wiring diagram on his website. It has been quite the learning experience starting with a pile of used ML Quest speaker parts and basically reverse engineering all the electronics. Ron over at the Martin Logan tech service department also deserves a shout out as he was a huge help in repairing and testing my power supply boards.
Good to hear the panels are operational with these adaptations.

I've been wanting to experiment with alternate step-up transformers for the Monoliths and the SL3XC, and this design looks good and parts are readily available (unlike Amplimo transformers). What step-up ratio did you wind up with?

Since your setup does not have the resistance Jazzmans design has with the segmented ladder, are you including any balancing resistance in your design?
IIRC, a step-up requires some R in the loop to dampen any oscillation. Too lazy to go look it up now.

I hope the rest of it comes together smoothly for you and you can enjoy the fruits of your labor.
 

Brandon Hartwick

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Good to hear the panels are operational with these adaptations.

I've been wanting to experiment with alternate step-up transformers for the Monoliths and the SL3XC, and this design looks good and parts are readily available (unlike Amplimo transformers). What step-up ratio did you wind up with?

Since your setup does not have the resistance Jazzmans design has with the segmented ladder, are you including any balancing resistance in your design?
IIRC, a step-up requires some R in the loop to dampen any oscillation. Too lazy to go look it up now.

I hope the rest of it comes together smoothly for you and you can enjoy the fruits of your labor.
These transformers were available from Newark, I think they were like 2 days delivery and the pricing was great. Figuring out how to wire them all up was a little tricky but Jazzman had some diagrams on his blog.

The original transformers were 70:1 and these new ones work out to 76:1 so the difference isn't big enough to warrant any changes.

I was hoping to have everything ready for a full test run this weekend but my MDF woofer boxes didn't work out at all so I will be designing some laser cut steel boxes instead.
 
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