DiY floorstanders for Naim Supernait 2

Hi !

some of the naim community would have had DiY’ed or built their own speakers from speaker kits…

I would love to hear from you

I am looking ( this year ) to try and make floorstander for Naim SN2

which kit did you choose and why ?

what were your considerations ?

any images will be great !

i havent see such a thread on the Naim Community so i am happy to start one here

regards
mpw

I designed my speakers from the ground up - not a kit.
I’m happy to share the basic’s of design principles, drive units & crossovers, but you will need a well equipped chippy shop

For ready made & proven designs, Troels Gravesen of Denmark seems to be the leader of the pack

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I was told that it is the easiest thing in the world to make one speaker (probably a great over simplification) but making two speakers exactly the same is extremely difficult if not damn near impossible for the DIY’er.

I would imagine that any sonic impairment between the two speakers could drive a person insane.

Hats off to Mike-B - as you say woodworking is a skill you need for this venture.

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Mike-B,

I do have access to a nice woodworking shop…

I am already cutting the plinth ( on a CNC ) for my Lenco L75 with a Rega RB330 arm and fingers crossed it will turn out well…

but i can work on assembling a floorstander loudspeaker provided its a kit form.

I am not good at

designing speakers
selecting drivers
designing crossover and making crossover

Would be happy to hear of your design considerations and final outcomes…

How are the Meniscus Audio kits or the GR Research kits ?

I am not too keen on ribbon tweeters though - dont know why - just that i prefer the normal tweeters.

I will look at the system pics page but will be nice if you can share a few images of your speakers and your system

My consideration includes the fact that any loudspeaker has to work with my existing chain including the Naim SN2.

I am not changing the Supernait 2 now ( for a very high power amp ) - cant afford it.

regards
mpw

In that case & to prevent a lot of grief & frustration, I strongly advise to take a look at Troels Gravesen. All his designs, the drivers he uses & the crossover parts are good quality.

The point AndyP makes about getting two speakers to perform the same is relevant. Attention to detail & everything made the same is key.

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I’m not sure that I have seen a ‘DIY’ thread in this place before. Good on you and good luck.

My experience probably won’t be much use as I have only tried a single build so far and that was of an active open baffle system, very loosely based on the proportions, but sadly not the looks of the Jamo R909. I agree speakers are as much about fabrication skills and facilities as the design.

Oh and repeated attempts take up loads of room!

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I have made my own speakers it is the Troels Gravesen Illumina 66 floorstanders.
Great sound quality.
I use them with a Unitilite.

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col

thank you

Nice to see more DiY ( or Semi DiY ) community in this thread…

what made you choose the Illumina 66 ?

Why did you not go to the market and buy a branded speaker off the shelf ?

I see it a 2 way floorstander - Illumina 66

request you to put a pic on this thread… the new Naim Community interface has made it very easy to do so…

regards
mpw

If you have even half reasonable DIY skills, it is quite easy to make speakers from a kit: some of those by Wilmslow Audio are said to be very good. And if you have an interest in transmission line bass (for me the approach that sounds natural) there is a British firm called IPL that again have a good reputation. Using kit speakers the biggest challenge is the finish, where your DIY skills may be most needed. IIRC IPL and maybe even Wilmslow Audio have some of their models available to hear at their store, which would be the best place to start. At least one member on the old forum had built IPLs, but not sure if on the new forum, and search facility of archived old forum at the moment is inadequate.

There are also lots of speaker designs available just as the plans, from a huge number of sources: the biggest difficulty there may be getting any idea of which ones actually sound any good! You need to be prepared to have to do a lot of tweaking, or even abandon and start again - or you could be lucky.

You can also design completely from scratch and there are design tools available, for example to calculate certain dimensions etc, then you are in a similar place to picking up plans.

Unless you go down the active route with a fully adjustable digital crossover, as I have, getting the crossover right may be more difficult than the physical construction.

I have a project on the go, albeit dormant for couple of years, but for me transmission line bass is the only worth having, so I am designing a pair of those. The mid and top I decided to do using a satellite enclosure for various reasons, and that was no trouble at all and is now in regular use in my main system in place of the mid and top of the bought speakers. My first two attempts with the transmission line bass part, were less than satisfactory, and it has gone back to the drawing board. But then I have a high bar: they must sound at least as good as my PMC speakers.

It is certainly possible to make speakers sounding as good as or better than commercial speakers for less money, though I think the better the commercial speakers the harder it is to do that, as after all at that level they have put an awful lot into their designs. And whether you save money compared to secondhand speakers is less certain. For reference, my PMCs current equivalent to my model cost about £13K today - but you can buy mine secondhand for around £4K. The parts for my mid/top satellites cost the equivalent of about £1300. My active crossover cost about £1000 (a major part of that being the cost of parts for its modification from stock). My bass drivers cost about £500 for the pair, but I’m going to have to change them, so more cost though some recovery secondhand. Wood and other materials only a few hundred £. I guess that if I achieve it I will have paid a bit less than than the secondhand cost, and the mid/top certainly better. Many, many hours of work - but then it is a hobby, and great satisfaction at the end if I achieve the goal. If I don’t I will keep the mid/top, sell bass drivers, and still have better than where I started.

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I am browsing the Troelsgraven site and i like the Poor Man’s Strad speaker

The cost of all the drivers and components are less than Euro 1000

I like the higher 90.2 dB sensitivity of the speaker so my Naim SN2 will find easier to drive

I think i have the room for it.

But nothing is finalised yet.

This is a project i want to do this year after my Lenco L75

@Innocent_Bystander In DiY projects i doubt many folks would get to hear a demo unit and anyways it makes a difference only if you can get a home audition.

I am not inclined to go to active crossover…

I am am Electronics Engineer by education but that was very many moons ago

But…

Half my life is spent in welding and cutting and mechanical stuff that i have forgotten many things electronic !! :grinning:

The SB Acoustics Satori drivers have distribution in India - so speaker kits with their drivers can be considered too.

Lets see how it goes…

In my mind i want to build a big speaker with large drivers & excellent midrange that can play a variety of music - need scale.

too many details don’t’& cool neutral sound interest me much.

regards

I made a pair of the Illumina 66 speakers and I think they are wonderful value for the money. I put a photo of my speakers on the Systems thread here and Troels included them on his website. Troels is very helpful. I chose to veneer mine and make them lute shaped which involved a lot more skill and effort but if you follow Troels example and you take your time you can make a very impressive looking pair of speakers that sound really good.

Steve

i have made 3 pairs of IPL speakers and they have all sounded excellent with naim kit, I currently have a pair of the s2tlk ones finished in zebrano and with my new nova are sounding very good.

Whilst a demo at a dealer is not as good as at home, it is infinitely better than no demo! I have bought speakers quite successfully that way, though last time I did it I took my old speakers with me (large 60kg beasts) to someone’s private home and to two dealers - so that I could have a comparative demo, so setting the baseline for comparison. Maybe I’m lucky, or as some people suggest maybe transmission line speakers seem to work in a wide variety of rooms, but I have not been disappointed not hearing at home. Against that, a DIY build is pot luck as to what it sounds like - and what someone else says is great, you might not like.

Noting your intent re big drivers, IIRC Winslow Audio’s range includes transmission line speakers with a 12” or with a 15” driver, vaguely reminiscent of PMCs MB2 and BB5 models. They used to do them with ATC’s superb dome midrange unit, like I use in my satellite mid/top, but sadly ATC ceased supplying to the DIY trade a couple of years ago. I think Wilmslow now use a clone from the same manufacturer as the bass unit, which has the advantage of being a cheaper (the ATC units were well over £500 a piece last I saw them), though how they compare I don’t know.

Never having heard then I know how good the Wilsmslow transmission line design is, nor how good is their crossover design, so this is not an endorsement, however if I was looking at kits I would go and hear them if they have on demo.

Hi,

i agree with what you say but

I live in Mumbai, India

so its not possible for me at all

The reason i am looking at DiY ( or semi DiY ) is that i think i need large drivers for the scale part of it.

Branded speakers having such drivers are very costly

Thats not to say that a 2 way floorstander is not good - question is will it have the scale ?

A 3 way floorstander i dont know if the SN2 can handle at 80W

so something with large drivers and high efficiency is called for in my case i think

i will visit the wilsmslow website as well

steve2 - i tried to look up your build on troelsgraven website but i only see 1 build by Lars

maybe i will look again

regards

Ah, location indeed can rule out listening - including ready made speakers …unless you have any chance of a holiday trip you could combine with a listening session!

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I have owned many speakers costing around £ 1000 but the Illumina 66s are far superior and Troels Gravesen gives options for midrange and HF resistors so you can tune the speakers to suit your room / taste.
I have good woodworking skills and have made many speakers in the past and there is obviously great satisfaction in building them yourself plus in my case I matched my furniture also which is American Black Walnut.
I cannot remember the name at the moment ( I am 71 so memory not so good) but there are are Danish speaker manufacturers using Scan Speak drivers and they cost about £ 8000/£10000 if using the same drivers that I used.
The cost for mine drivers, crossover components, wood and cabinet fittings etc was about £1900 plus about 50 hours labour.

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Col

Thank you for your reply…and some data…

As i cast my net a bit wider i am looking at Jim Holtz and Curt Campbell - Meniscus Audio - The Anthologies speaker or their newer Bordeaux speaker which has the ceramic accuton midrange.

regards
mpw

If you are looking for good bass you need a 10 or 12 inch bass unit.
I use a 12 inch subwoofer with the Illumina 66s otherwise not enough bass.

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I agree Col

Its all about moving air isnt it ??

My present speakers with 6.5 inch midbass + sealed cabinet and supported by a single 10 inch sealed woofer might not be moving enough air in my room.

I fear / wonder if a day will come when i may question or demand the SN2"s muscles and ability to deliver the grunt when required.

There are 2 approaches

a. High sensitive speakers + low powered amps ( tubes maybe )

b. Medium to Low sensitive speakers + high power amps

anything in between becomes a compromise i suspect…

regards

What a strange concept! By what possible reasoning would either extreme work and everything in between be a compromise? It is simply a continuum, where you go from the pros & cons of one extreme through to tge pros and cons of the other.

As for moving air, yes that is a fundamental requirement for bass, however the challenges relate to acceleration and linearity of movement for a long throw smaller cone, vs inertia and weight for a larger cone, these factors being very significant to “speed” of the bass. It is not really that one or other definitevely is better - though personally I tend to favour the larger driver approach.

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