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The ULTIMATE PC sound system (official thread)

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(@megabytecl)
Posts: 2
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Looking for a little help lease.  I'm not very good with electronics so i purchased this 3-way crossover.

image

 Instead of making my own as per DYI Perks.

Problem is I am getting horrible noise in the speakers.

Anybody think this crossover is the source of the noise?

And does anybody know where I can get 5.6 nF capacitor in the US?

 
Posted : 27/05/2022 7:05 pm
(@louis)
Posts: 1
New Member
 

Really enjoyed the video, but i watched it as alternative for a soundbar. I've tested a few soundbars but i was unhappy with the sound. Then i made an wooden case with older boombox midtones speakers (those were the only ones i got) the boombox sounded great with these in them, but when i moved them into the wooden case the quality was disappointing. I would like to be able to adjust the treble and bass, so i connected a 43 cm amplifier on them which is able to adjust those settings.

Maybe someone knows how to make your own soundbar which the abbility to change the volume, treble and bass. Or maybe it's an idea for DIY Perks to make a video for a soundbar alternative.

 

It's not very professional that moderation of a topic takes that long (almost 48 hours) so you can delete my post & my name from this forum.

This post was modified 2 years ago 3 times by Louis
 
Posted : 31/05/2022 11:40 pm
(@picko)
Posts: 2
New Member
 

Hi!

I was thinking of building speakers myself to connect to my amplifier, and I was wondering if you still need the amplifiers shown in the video connected to the subwoofer, tweeter and mid-tone driver, or if you can connect them directly to the amplifier. If so, does anyone know how you connect them? I am using a NAD stereo receiver 7020e.

 
Posted : 02/06/2022 3:14 pm
(@catalin-novacgmail-com)
Posts: 3
New Member
 

@picko if you already have an amplifier, you don't need them inside the speakers, but you should consider the crossover for 3 way separation.

 
Posted : 29/06/2022 8:05 am
(@david-chapman)
Posts: 1
New Member
 

Hi, I've started construction of the sound system. As I've never tackled a self build speaker system, the crossover schematic is a complete mystery to me!

Is there a more detailed guide to assembling this and is there a picking list for the parts?

When I search for the capacitors, there's a large selection to choose from and I have no idea which is the correct part.

Thanks

David

  

 
Posted : 09/07/2022 5:59 pm
(@averell64)
Posts: 1
New Member
 

@diyperks Hey Matt,

Great Video - I am planning on building one of those sound-systems too and I was wondering wether you forgot to add the sketchup files on the website as you mentioned those in the video. Not necessarily a huge deal as it would be quite easy to model something from the schematic for the purpose of cnc-ing the cutouts but it would still come in handy and safe a little bit of time.

Another mentionworthy thing might be, that the price you mentioned in the video is quite dependant from where you are ordering from, from germany it would be 350 euros just for the electronics (420 if I had ordered via your links (high shipping and low supply), needed to find other sources). And that doesnt include the usb-deck, step down converter, powersupply and building-materials. So a more realistic price would be around 450 euros in germany for the premium version. (just one mdf-board for the middle section would be 18 euros in germany, so even the budget version would still be decently expensive).

I don't mean to come across negative - I really enjoyed the video and want to build one too, those were just a few things that I noticed while looking for materials and doing general preparation for the project.

Best Regards

 
Posted : 06/08/2022 9:52 am
 Naut
(@naut)
Posts: 3
New Member
 

 

9076A88A B949 4841 985D C4127C41BE86

I changed the tweeters and midrange drivers to fit in a lower budget, but I finished it now and it still sounds awesome!

 

This post was modified 2 years ago by Naut
 
Posted : 14/09/2022 5:45 pm
marcdraco reacted
(@davidd)
Posts: 1
New Member
 

Hi,

First off all thats a realy nice build I like it a lot!

Currently I am trying to build this sound desk too, but I found a possible problem in the guide and I hope someone can help me: In the guide he says that we should use a 15V power supply and that it is in the power range for the drivers, but the description in the linked 4 channel driver just says 12V. Do I need to stepdown the power now? And if yes, any recommendations for power converters with the expected load?

Best Regards

 
Posted : 03/10/2022 7:44 am
(@pastamiz)
Posts: 1
New Member
 
Posted by: @diyperks

Full build guide has been completed!>

Hi !

I'm new here and I think your project is amazing. I'd like to make my own speaker too, but unfortunately, I'm not good in electrical wiring. I hope to find in here nice builders to answer the following questions :

  1. Where does the power supply (toshiba in the video) connects in the the system ?
  2. Can we connect a Jack 3.5 connector directly to the crossover board ?
  3. In the crossover wiring, where does the ground connect to ?

Thanks to all for reading me and I hope I won't sound so unskilled ^^.

 
Posted : 06/10/2022 8:05 am
DIY Perks
(@diyperks)
Posts: 150
Estimable Member Admin
Topic starter
 

Welcome to the forum!

 

1) I just connected it with a DC power jack at the back where the USB cable exits through as well.

2) Yes! It may affect the crossover frequencies though as it's fairly complex.

3) The same ground as the audio output of the DAC/audio source.

 

🙂

 
Posted : 06/10/2022 10:03 am
Pastamiz reacted
DIY Perks
(@diyperks)
Posts: 150
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Topic starter
 
Posted by: @naut

 

9076A88A B949 4841 985D C4127C41BE86

I changed the tweeters and midrange drivers to fit in a lower budget, but I finished it now and it still sounds awesome!

 

That looks great, nice work!

 
Posted : 06/10/2022 10:03 am
root24 reacted
(@bad_rockk)
Posts: 1
New Member
 

Posted by: @naut

I changed the tweeters and midrange drivers to fit in a lower budget, but I finished it now and it still sounds awesome!

Could you tell me what speakers you used and if you changed anything on the crossover? Here in Germany the speakers only would cost about 200€.

Did you also used floor boards or solid wood boards?

 
Posted : 01/12/2022 10:34 am
root24 reacted
 Naut
(@naut)
Posts: 3
New Member
 

@bad_rockk I chose the other drivers because they had similar specifications, so I didn't change the crossover. For the tweeters, I used dayton audio ND20FA-6. I used dayton audio PC68-4 midrange drivers. I did still use the subwoofer as I couldn't find any small enough alternatives. All the drivers Together cost me around €105 (I bought them from soundimports). Good luck!

Edit: I used solid wood

This post was modified 2 years ago 2 times by Naut
 
Posted : 02/12/2022 6:14 am
root24 reacted
(@root24)
Posts: 2
New Member
 

I am also making up my mind to build a sound system for my PC. I think this thread is gonna be useful for me before I go on to purchase a sound system for my PC

 
Posted : 15/12/2022 7:48 am
(@root24)
Posts: 2
New Member
 

It's been two month since I am using Nebula soundbar for my pc. The sound quality is balanced and pretty good.

This post was modified 1 year ago by DIY Perks
 
Posted : 19/12/2022 12:45 pm
(@dantoday)
Posts: 4
Active Member
 

Amazing design and video - trying to understand the electrics step-by-step before attempting myself. If we used the same DAC (Khadas Tone1), does this also power the amplifier? If not, how was the amplifier powered?

 
Posted : 12/01/2023 11:44 pm
DIY Perks
(@diyperks)
Posts: 150
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Topic starter
 

Posted by: @dantoday

Amazing design and video - trying to understand the electrics step-by-step before attempting myself. If we used the same DAC (Khadas Tone1), does this also power the amplifier? If not, how was the amplifier powered?

 

I just powered mine from a 15v power brick!

 

 
Posted : 13/01/2023 11:12 am
(@dantoday)
Posts: 4
Active Member
 

Thank you Matt! I'm trying to make something inspired by this "monitor riser" idea but on a smaller scale and portable. Powered entirely from the amazing Caldigit TB4 Element Hub, which powers the laptop, two portable monitors, amplifier (only 2 x 10W drivers) and a microphone.

I'm 99% the way there but struggling to create a DAC an AMP circuit from from a single USB 3.2 port. I've used a USB-C breakout to power the DAC (works fine) but then branches off to step up to 12V for the amp, but it doesn't like that (flashing LEDs!). Perhaps I'm asking too much of the USB-C breakout board...

 
Posted : 22/01/2023 3:33 pm
DIY Perks
(@diyperks)
Posts: 150
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Yeah, you'll probably be pulling too much current. Has the dock got more than one USB-C port? Might be possible to use a 'poll trigger' to exploit USB Power Delivery to deliver 12v straight from it without stepping up.

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/353646630136

 
Posted : 22/01/2023 7:42 pm
(@dantoday)
Posts: 4
Active Member
 

Very intriguing! It has 3 x TB4/USB4 ports so I'm going to give that a go! Thank you for your help

 
Posted : 22/01/2023 11:31 pm
marcdraco
(@marcdraco)
Posts: 476
Member
 

Posted by: @megabytecl

Looking for a little help lease.  I'm not very good with electronics so i purchased this 3-way crossover.

-- attachment is not available --

 Instead of making my own as per DYI Perks.

Problem is I am getting horrible noise in the speakers.

Anybody think this crossover is the source of the noise?

And does anybody know where I can get 5.6 nF capacitor in the US?

"Horrible noise" - can you be more specific? Is it a hum or a sparkle, a hiss? Crossovers like that are not meant to be used at the input side of an amplifier, they're meant to separate the frequencies inside the speakers at high voltage and current (hence the large, wire-wound resistors and inductors). These crossovers are entirely passive and often quite well designed - but you put them after the amplifier, not before.

I'm a little puzzled by Matt's design too - but it's been a LONG time since I studied filter design and the math isn't really my area - but as I recall, each stage of a filter shifts the phase of the signal - distorts it in other words and also loads the previous stage. You can't simply follow a 88 Hz low-pass with a 60 Hz low pass because the 60 Hz filter is loading the output of the 88 Hz stage (and so on).

This is making a mess of the low-frequency signals phase arrangement but fortunately, most of that is too low down for most of us to hear. It will likely kill any attempts at open-air HRTF like SRS though.

The centre channel should be a bandpass filter too. Slicing off the high end (3 dB at 2Khz) is still going to allow significant amounts of low frequencies to the mid-speaker (we used to call them squawkers in my day!) which will reduce the performance of the mid-range driver because it's trying to produce those low-frequency signals.

There's a reason why true HiFi systems don't have a tone control and this goes some way to explaining why. You can't just stick a simple passive filter in and expect it to work and chaining them will produce weird results. The quality sound you're experiencing is more likely a result of the speaker quality, not the crossover design.

Active crossover design is an art in itself (more than a science) but you can get a pre-made one from Behringer that someone has already designed. They claim it has a 0-degree phase shift... but hey, worth a look for the money.

https://www.behringer.com/product.html?modelCode=P0132

Rod Elliott has designed a sweet one, details here as there's no point me re-inventing the wheel as it uses the same Linkwitz-Riley arrangement of Butterworth filters as the Behringer. 

Active filters have various performances after their inventors such as Butterworth as used in this one. Some even have peaks in the passband which can give rise to audible "distortions". You can't just look at a filter and hope it works... If only! Rod's article looks at a lot of this in far more detail so you should use that as a reference.

https://sound-au.com/project09.htm

And the original designer(s):

https://www.linkwitzlab.com

Worth a look if only for his electret modification (something not for the feint hearted).

 


Take everything I say with a pinch of salt, I might be wrong!

 
Posted : 23/01/2023 1:52 pm
(@vtkv02)
Posts: 1
New Member
 

The build is great and the tutorial was very thorough. The only part I don't get is how the RCA cables coming out of the DAC become a three wire going into the crossover. Is there an adapter or are rca cables cut and spliced into one three wire cable with left, right, and ground wire. any help would be aprecciated

 
Posted : 16/03/2023 4:53 pm
(@pangit99)
Posts: 1
New Member
 

Can anyone who has built a "budget" version of one of these (e.g. like Naut's version above) comment on the sound quality (particularly for gaming)? Would it still sound awesome compared to something like a decent Logitech system? 

For me the downside is the amount of desk space it takes up, but the trade-off could be worth it if the sound is even close to Matt's original version. 

 
Posted : 27/03/2023 4:46 am
marcdraco
(@marcdraco)
Posts: 476
Member
 

@pangit99 Sound is a funny thing where music and gaming are concerned. The human ear is amazingly sensitive but much of the quality in a sound system is down to the speaker drivers. You can put a good driver into a cardboard box and it will sound better than cheap driver in the toughest material.

Modern amplifiers are almost all class-A or class-D (even then most are D thanks to improvements in MOSFETs) and they are so incredibly linear and "flat" that the sound quality is almost entirely determined by the speakers themselves.

I could go on at length but that's where you need to spend the money. Drivers matter.


Take everything I say with a pinch of salt, I might be wrong!

 
Posted : 27/03/2023 9:55 pm
(@diyswanson)
Posts: 1
New Member
 

Hi DIY perks, I'm a massive fan of all your videos.

I was hoping for your wisdom on speaker choices. I am no audiophile and I do not know what I am looking for when it comes to choosing drivers.
Firstly, I was wondering if you have made or considered making a decision making guide or something of that nature. Is there some general advice you could give if not? I am also interested in your decision making process for choosing amplifiers, and also the way you tune them. Would you ever publish a tuning guide? or could you remind me which tools you use?

I, specifically, am planning to make a three unit desktop project. Amp and sub in a central box, and two mini bookshelf styles. I am a skilled woodworker and plan to make the boxes out of iron bark which is a hard heavy timber. Is that timber choice unwise?

First post on your forum, I am not really sure what the etiquette is, but this is what I would love to know.

Thanks! and keep up the beautiful work.

P.S. Anyone else who has some advise on these matters please reply 🙂 Oh also, I am located in Australia so Asian companies might be better than Tectonic. Shipping from the USA is like 50% of retail price.

P.P.S. My PC build (I'll make a separate post in the appropriate forum, I think you guys would like it) is designed to be small form factor so it does not have any spare PCI slots. I have some high quality headphones and I am currently using the AC57 font panel audio port. I'd like to be able to plug them into the central unit of this planned build. If I were to build a central unit with an amp and sub, is there any point integrating a USB external sound card into the build? Would digital audio input make any quality difference (by bypassing the motherboard inbuilt audio processors)? Or alternatively, is there a amp unit which will run good headphones well at lossless quality?
I have a pair of AKG M220 Pro headphones, but will upgrade in time.
Any guidance on this would also be fantastic.

This post was modified 12 months ago 2 times by DIYSwanson
 
Posted : 27/06/2023 12:07 pm
marcdraco
(@marcdraco)
Posts: 476
Member
 

Your etiquette is right on point, welcome to the forum (I'm just another fan like yourself).

Matt (@diyperks) has just done one of his greatest ever designs (in my limited opinion) - a pair of speakers with DSPs and a folded horn design that sound bloody amazing to my ears. He's really pulled out the stops on this one. It's a plastic former with plaster of Paris' and PVA to give it the heft and structure. It should be possible to modify, but making the folded horn is a little difficult as it needs very smooth turns.

Professional headphones are very hard to drive for simple amplifiers but I'm spooling off the headphone amp from my modification to the ultimate USB-C microphone so it can be used as a separate unit. Even then it might not be strong enough to drive professional headphones as its designed for a single 5V supply.

Phil Salmony (find him on YouTube) did a design that mine is based on - using a design someone else came up with but they all work by paralleling multiple low-cost, high-quality op-amps the NE5532 so give a damping factor so low that it's in the fractions (anything less than 1 is good). It's really a case of if isn't broken, don't fix it.

I think Phil sells kits (I haven't looked in a while) mine will be here when it's done but I'm time-poor at the moment so it's rather delayed!


Take everything I say with a pinch of salt, I might be wrong!

 
Posted : 28/06/2023 6:30 pm
(@heinz)
Posts: 1
New Member
 

Hi all,

I like this speakers very much and would like to build it. I am quite familiar with woodworking and soldering works, if someone tells me what to solder to what. 😉

But I do not know too much about electronics. Searching for the suitable capacitators I am completely overwhelmed. Film capacitors, electroly cap. and many more. Can anyone telle me which capacitor type(s) to use and lead me to through the capacitator djungle, please. Write slowly, please. I am from Germany. 😉

Thank you in advance.

Cheers

Heinz

 
Posted : 13/09/2023 5:26 pm
(@dennispeeters27)
Posts: 3
New Member
 

Hi all, 

 

So I've finished this specific setup a few months ago, and I've been really enjoying it, as it sounds incredible. These AMT tweeters are a gem, and that DAC is awesome. However, I've notices that sometimes the amt make this really high-pitched whistling noice when the bass really sets in. Others who have the same experience? Apart from that, I'm super happy with the system, they really fit the setup well. 

 

Kind regards, 

Dennis

DSC05682

 

 
Posted : 14/11/2023 2:19 pm
DIY Perks
(@diyperks)
Posts: 150
Estimable Member Admin
Topic starter
 

That looks great in white, well done! Regarding the high pitch noise you may want to try a power supply that can deliver a higher amerage as it might be rippling or something under heavy load. You might also want to put a capacitor in series with the AMTs to ensure that they don't get any lower frequency signals.

 
Posted : 15/11/2023 5:37 pm
marcdraco reacted
(@dennispeeters27)
Posts: 3
New Member
 

@diyperks Thanks! I'll swap the power supply then indeed, I was already a bit iffy about it when putting it all together, so it might require a change. For the capacitor, would you advise to put it pre-amp or post amp?

 
Posted : 16/11/2023 10:51 am
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