The Family15 fulfilled its mission to outperform the Needle with flying colors. So it rightly bears its name Family. Its decisive gene for success is its slim silhouette, which makes it sound big and tall even in the smallest room. Anyone who has rebuilt the slim beauty will certainly not want to buy a prefabricated box in the store again, but will get a desire for more DIY - because of course there is still something. There are also said to be people who want to go a bit bigger straight away. So we have taken the future-proof genes of the Needle and the Family - namely the tiny footprint of a floor-standing speaker - and thought one category bigger.
The loudspeaker self-assembly is great:
Thanks to our professional development, you have the design in your hands without losing the sound. Thus, there is a tremendous variety of design possibilities with simultaneous rebuild reliability as far as the sonic properties are concerned. Basically, the creative outpourings of our readers can be confidently placed side by side - if it's the same construction manual, they will also sound the same, regardless of whether the builder is a trained musician or has misused the kitchen table for self-building due to a lack of a workshop. Even in the entry-level segment, it is worthwhile to realize your own ideas, as Natalie (see picture below right) shows us with her own ideas for the realization of a construction proposal - it simply does not have to be a rectangular black box, there are already enough.
So, those were certainly enough arguments for the loudspeaker DIY beyond the sheer price-performance ratio, now we better devote ourselves to the practice again. It's clear what comes next, isn't it? Broadband construction and two-way box are followed by three-way, right? So we dedicate ourselves in this construction proposal to the task of building a three-way speaker as slim as possible.
To make it fit the Family 11, we took the GDT 104 N tweeter and the W 115-4 bass-midrange driver, but now used the W 115-4 as a pure midrange driver and added a woofer.
We decided to use the W 218-4, which has been waiting a little longer for its first use in a construction proposal.As an inexpensive chassis, the W 128-4 has to make do with a sheet metal basket, but the silk gloss coated cardboard cone with its inverse dust dome still does quite well and fits perfectly with the W 115-4, both for optical and technical reasons.
Anyway, next we entered its parameters into LspCAD and received a bass reflex design with 40 liters of volume as a cabinet proposal. With an untrimmed HP 70 reflex tube, the lower cutoff frequency falls below 40 Hz. Since the W 128-4 radiates directly, the crossover frequency to the W 115-4 can be safely set at 350 Hz, which can be achieved quite inexpensively with reasonable components. Although at this comparatively high crossover frequency a plastic shell would suffice as a volume, we have planned a lush 10 liters, since this has resulted in the arrangement of the housing chambers. In addition, its chamber walls favorably serve to stiffen the entire box.
This time we didn't use MDF (medium density fiberboard) for the construction, but OSB (coarse particleboard), because it offers an interesting surface that can either be left natural or sanded and oiled or stained with little effort. If you are rebuilding a Family22, you can practice the surface treatment on the one hand and on the other hand the flush fitting of the baskets into the front panel by means of milling or doubling up the front. With higher-quality boxes than the Familys, this is a must, here it is the freestyle.
We provide the construction plan also this time
After assembly, we sanded the surface, we have dispensed with staining and oiling, everyone is welcome to do as they wish. One advantage of oiling or varnishing is that no wood chips are released, which can quickly end up in the fingers during careless transport.
With the Family 22 we paid attention to the appropriate Intertechnik components and also kept the effort of the wiring within limits. We were all the more surprised by the results of the crossover, which was ultimately quite simple.
After developing the crossovers, we then permanently installed them in the speakers. You can build the crossovers yourself or take advantage of the crossover construction offered by us for a small additional price.
Pay attention to the correct polarity of the speakers. The plus pole of the tweeter is marked in red. For the midrange and woofer, the positive pole is the wider flag. When soldering, the cable and the terminal lug must be heated together until the solder flows into each other. Caution: If you pull on the cable too early to check whether the connection holds, you run the risk of loosening the solder tag from the plastic base. When screwing the chassis in place, as always, please do not forget to pre-drill, this considerably reduces the risk of slipping into the diaphragm with the screwdriver.
Four bags of original Sonofil belong in the box, the area around the bass reflex port remains free. The Intertechnik HP 70 bass reflex tube remains untrimmed.
Now comes the freestyle of every construction report: the sound description. We are still as happy as a child at Christmas when the speakers are finally moved from the measurement lab to the listening studio. One thing in advance: The Family22 sounds excellent for its price. We performed the sound test on a stereo amplifier, resisted the temptation to put a CD in the player, and controlled the music via tablet from the hard drive.
Mediamonkey reads out the content and the remote control via smart device from the sofa is just fun. That makes the decision all the harder. Mozart? Okay, so "Ein Mädchen oder Weibchen" from The Magic Flute, performed by Herrmann Prey, once again you want to miss your target group as a speaker developer and first find out for yourself what the speaker can do before feeding it with songs suitable for the target group. The signal is forwarded to the powerful transistor amplifier via a professional Tascam sound card. We decided against using the Family22 with a low-power tube right from the start.
And who now thinks that not only the use of a CD player, but also a stereo amplifier is from the past, has not on the screen that amplifiers in the family are quite inherited ... so the offspring may already have an integrated amplifier and now only needs the inexpensive Family to be happy. Nevertheless, we remain with music that is not very suitable for the target group: Herrmann stands tall and with a swollen chest on the stage, the metal plates of the glockenspiel, which are stimulated to swing by a small clapper, are clearly recognizable as such.
And yet the Family will probably be used by more youthful semesters, so we have adapted the music accordingly in the sound text by rummaging a little on Youtube. In any case, the singer at the "Muse live at Rock Werchter Festival" sounded intelligible and the bass guitar was distinguishable from the bass drum and guitar, even if the sound quality of the music source was not too good due to a strong compression of the playback, but that can't be blamed on the Family. Instead, it reproduced Tina Turner's live concert "Proud Mary" from 2009 in such a rousing manner that the feet practically automatically bobbed along and the hands clapped along as if by themselves. The level was also reminiscent of a live concert. So the Family 22 passed its acid test with flying colors and is not averse to the one or other small party.
Last but not least
Finally, let's come back to the future factor of the Family. Futur wants to have achievable goals, the others are rightly called Utopia. With the Family 22, we have already set a milestone that is not too far away; upgrading or even starting from scratch is certainly a worthwhile goal. The necessary investment of money does not in any way unduly prolong the path to the Satorique class, which, after a positive building experience, will no longer remain in the realm of unfulfilled dreams for all time.
Your team of loudspeaker DIY