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  1. #1

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    Default My new Tannoy HPD-385A Cabinets and Crossover Mods

    Four months ago I picked up my HPD's. At first they were kind of dull sounding. I then updated the crossovers with Solen Caps and Mill resistors. This was a vast improvement over what I was hearing.

    My mid still seemed to sound a little off, so I added some more foam and a couple pounds of polyfill to the enclosure. That fixed that problem, but now I was lacking bass.

    After a couple months of listening, something was bothering me about the sound of the speaker. Vocals sounded a little nasal and the tone wasn't just right, so I upgraded the caps again, this time to Sonic Caps. Thanks again for the tip Jesse.

    I knew for a while that I should have new cabinets built. Besides the fact that the Tannoy cabs were on the small size for a 15" driver, they were made of fibreboard with very little bracing.

    Using parameters from Tannoy, I drew up a design in WinISD, and printed them up for a buddy of mine who's a carpenter.

    The new cabs were made of 3/4" MDF all around, with a extra 1/2" sheet on the front. At the bottom of the driver a 3/4" thick shelf was installed. Parts Express 3/4" Sonic Barrier was uses on the back wall behind the driver, 2.5" acoustic foam was used on top, with 1.5" foam for the rest of the enclosure. Two 4"x4.75" Precision Port tubes were used per enclosure, tuned to 35hz.

    Internal wiring from the binding posts was some kind of braided Kimber Kable, this was upgraded to Goertz AG2 cable, the same cable I'm using from my amp to the speakers. Internal wiring from the crossover was upgraded a month or two ago with some silver hybrid copper cable from Ben. I have two silver inductors made of Goertz silver cable, once I can figure out how to do it neatly, I'm going to unroll the inductors and use them from my crossovers to my drivers.

    As for finishing them, I'm going to have to wait till my back and neck get a little better, they're easily over 100lbs. The plan so far is to use a piece of 1/4" MDF from the bottom to 1" below the driver. I'd like to make it appear that it's real wood, preferably redwood. The rest of the enclosure will be painted black. The rest of the face will be a matte black (like the old cabs), the rest of the cabinet will be gloss black.

    As for the sound of the new cabs and re-wire, wow! I had to check to make sure my sub wasn't on. Bass is deep and plentiful, mids are clear, highs slightly crisper. Soundstage between the speakers rival's my SDA 2B's.

    Now for the pics.

    Crossover.



    Internal cable.



    WinISD image.



    :*O






    Old cabs.



    New cabs.



    Yes, I know they're ugly as sin right now. But the sound coming out of them more than makes up for it.

    If you made it this far, thanks!
    Last edited by Face; 03-31-2008 at 02:56 PM.
    "He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you." Friedrich Nietzsche

  2. #2

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    Oh yes. Looks great, can't imagine how they sound.

  3. #3

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    Hey man don't hurt your back! More!!!
    Please. Please contact me a ben62670 @ yahoo.com. Make sure to include who you are, and you are from Polk so I don't delete your email. Also I am now physically unable to work on any projects. If you need help let these guys know. There are many people who will help if you let them know where you are.
    Thanks
    Ben

  4. #4

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    Those Tannoy's and Mcintosh gear sort of remind of some white van stuff I've seen......kidding!

    They look good. You should paint them blood red to match the walls.

  5. #5

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    Hey,, it looks pretty good from where I'm sitting--congrats.:)
    JC approves....he told me so. (F-1 nut)

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by BaggedLancer View Post
    They look good. You should paint them blood red to match the walls.
    Yeah, blood red face the rest of the cabinets black.
    HT/2-channel Rig: Sony 50” LCD TV; Toshiba HD-A2 DVD player; Emotiva LMC-1 pre/pro; Rogue Audio M-120 monoblocks (modded); Placette RVC; Emotiva LPA-1 amp; Bada HD-22 tube CDP (modded); VMPS Tower II SE (fronts); DIY Clearwave Dynamic 4CC (center); Wharfedale Opus Tri-Surrounds (rear); and VMPS 215 sub

    "God grooves with tubes."

  7. #7

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    Yeah, they do look nice and sturdy... should hold a bottle or two, I think , even if they're not vintage Polks. ;)

  8. #8

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    That's some great work.

    engtaz

  9. #9

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    I couldn’t help but notice your mug shot on the TV picture...

  10. #10

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    Like George said, "looks pretty good from where I'm sitting"
    'Political Correctness'.........defined

    "A doctrine fostered by a delusional, illogical minority and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a turd by the clean end."

  11. #11

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    Nice!!

    You probably could have gotten better results just adding a cap indiscriminately somewhere though. Just a though for next time.

    BDT
    I plan for the future. - F1Nut

  12. #12

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    Now you need a bigger tv to balance out the look.
    "The legitimate powers of government extend to such acts only as are injurious to others. But it does me no injury for my neighbour to say there are twenty gods, or no god. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg." --Thomas Jefferson

  13. #13

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    Love those crossovers...very nice work. You went all gung-ho moving all that gear and painting the room too! Looking real good :)

  14. #14

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    Thanks guys! Luckily, I didn't have to do any of the painting or carpentry work. :D
    "He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you." Friedrich Nietzsche

  15. #15

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    Carpentry doesn't bother me. I hate the paint prep, and dealing with the whole paint process. Worked with way too many nasty paints, and chemicals through the years. We are anxiously awaiting finished pics.
    Ben
    Please. Please contact me a ben62670 @ yahoo.com. Make sure to include who you are, and you are from Polk so I don't delete your email. Also I am now physically unable to work on any projects. If you need help let these guys know. There are many people who will help if you let them know where you are.
    Thanks
    Ben

  16. #16

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    Unless I can get someone to do it for me, they won't be finished for at least a month or two.
    "He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you." Friedrich Nietzsche

  17. #17

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    Very very nice!

    What needs to happen to get them finished?

  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by nikolas812 View Post
    What needs to happen to get them finished?
    I have a few bulging and herniated disks and a pinched nerve in my neck, waiting for things to heal up a little more before moving these monsters around.
    "He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you." Friedrich Nietzsche

  19. #19

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    Niice!
    Tannoy dual-concentrics rule. McIntosh power makes it all the sweeter :)
    Tannoy Dimension TD10, SOTA Star Sapphire, Heathkit W4A's, McIntosh MC2100, Eddie-Current Zana Deux, Singlepower SDS, Sennheiser HD650, Audio-Technica L3000, Sony Qualia 010

  20. #20

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    Fixed the broken links.
    "He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you." Friedrich Nietzsche

  21. #21

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    Default Fiber board

    One correction: Your factory enclosures were not "fiber-board" as it was not yet invented. They were particle board. The MDF you used for your new units, on the other hand, are "Medium Density Fiberboard".

    Just one criticism. Polyurethane foam is not suitable for speaker enclosure damping, even if it is convoluted. It's application is for dunnage and not acoustic damping. Both fiberglass and raw wool batting are both far superior. Polyurethane tends to be rather "bouncy". Good on you for including the central cross-bracing, essential for panel stiffening on larger panels.

    That said, if you are happy with the sound, its a moot point.

    I have a pair of HPD 315s that I bought in 1980. They came in factory Devon cabinets which I promptly sold and built Tannoy spec'd floor-standing enclosures with more stiffening and heavier panels which I clad in lumber store obtained red oak veneers. I used those from 1980 until 2005 when I fabbed new boxes from 3/4" and 1" MDF with premium 1/4-sawn black walnut veneers. They are identical in size to the original and moderately different in style. They have concealed nylon levelers so the veneers don't drag on the floor and get chipped away. X-over controls behind grill and a recessed connectors plate round back with banana jacks.
    Both the old ones and the new ones were successful acoustically, though the new version is somewhat prettier and somewhat better engineered.. Sorry, the photo's a little fuzzy.
    I had the surrounds replaced in 2003. Worth the price. I don't see why I would ever seek to replace these wonderful speakers.

    BTW, I worked for a pro sound reinforcement company for 14 years in my youth back in the seventies and eighties where I built bass bins, wedges, racks, sub-woofer enclosures, cases, etc., as well as studio monitors (we carried the JBL Pro Series line as well as EV and KEF to name a few). I had the bug in those days and bought a lot of different gear at cost plus 5%. I was a drummer as well so that's where the rest of my dough went.
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  22. #22

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    Nice Tannoys Mr. GM
    Yamaha RX-V2700, EMI 711As (front), RCA K-16 (rear), Magnavox Console (Center & TV Stand), Sony SMP-N200 media streamer, Dual 1249 TT =--- Sharp Aquas 60" LCD tellie

  23. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by wayne3burk View Post
    Nice Tannoys Mr. GM
    Agreed!

  24. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by GM2010 View Post
    Just one criticism. Polyurethane foam is not suitable for speaker enclosure damping, even if it is convoluted. It's application is for dunnage and not acoustic damping. Both fiberglass and raw wool batting are both far superior. Polyurethane tends to be rather "bouncy". Good on you for including the central cross-bracing, essential for panel stiffening on larger panels.
    Welcome and nice cabinets!

    Since my last post, the foam has all been replaced with PartsExpress Sonic Barrier and the bottom 6" of the cabinet filled with polyfill. I added more slats to the inside, further deadening the cabinet. The cabinets have also been veneered and stained. I have a more recent picture in the showcase, but all my gear has changed since.
    "He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you." Friedrich Nietzsche

  25. #25

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    I've also mounted the crossovers externally.

    "He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you." Friedrich Nietzsche

  26. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by Face View Post
    Welcome and nice cabinets!

    Since my last post, the foam has all been replaced with PartsExpress Sonic Barrier and the bottom 6" of the cabinet filled with polyfill. I added more slats to the inside, further deadening the cabinet. The cabinets have also been veneered and stained. I have a more recent picture in the showcase, but all my gear has changed since.
    They look great with the veneer, great job!

  27. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by wayne3burk View Post
    Nice Tannoys Mr. GM
    Thanks!

  28. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by TECHNOKID View Post
    They look great with the veneer, great job!
    Thank you!

  29. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by Face View Post
    I've also mounted the crossovers externally.

    Very nice. Killer looking rig overall. Mine is much more humble. Good work on the x-overs.

  30. #30

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    I hate to dig up dead threads, but I just picked up a pair of Tannoy Ardens, with the same HPD drivers and crossover as yours (for next to nothing, woo hoo!). I am looking into in upgrading the caps, but I noticed in the LF driver circuit where there were 2x 6.8uf and a 3.3uf cap, it appears you replaced them all with a single larger one. Why did you do that, and what did you replace them with. Also, how much of a difference did swapping in the mills make for you?

    Thanks.

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