New Life Old Speakers

DJ Bobcat

DJ Extraordinerror
Nov 8, 2014
11,096
Oklahoma City
... Like Sawdust said....
"There is a lot more to cabinet design than T-S parameters. There are issues of resonances, edge diffraction, port turbulence, etc."
No doubt, but you could get lucky. I built a speaker box once many years ago, and it sounded OK for use with my home stereo. It looked cool!
 
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Ausumm

Day Late and a Dollar Short
Oct 21, 2008
10,369
55
Bethlehem PA
www.mikefoxx.com
No doubt, but you could get lucky. I built a speaker box once many years ago, and it sounded OK for use with my home stereo. It looked cool!
HA!
I had the same thing, but in reverse.
I had a friend-of-a-friend who used to build his own speakers...
as part of his own company, Delta Acoustic Labs.
He was some sort of engineer, so he was experimenting with different geometry and materials.
First speakers I ever saw that used mylar cones. (completely new concept at the time)
He sold me a set of his test models.
LOOKED like crap, but sounded DELIGHTFUL.
 

Proformance

DJ Extraordinaire
Nov 6, 2006
3,310
So how much will it cost for materials will it take and how much of your time, plus updating the drivers and adding an internal amp, compare to just buying new powered speakers? Personally I don't care how dated they look as long as there cosmetically decent looking, and sound good. If you do decide to do it, make sure you wire them pu with the option to switch them from powered to passive just in case the built in amp craps out. Thats the problem with all powered speakers, there is no option to switch them to to passive.
The time doesn't matter because there's no deadline, no immediate need for these speakers which is what a relevant comparison to new purchases requires.
Material cost is 20% for passives, and about 50% for actives. So, creating new modern inventory from unused older resources in my downtown would be well worth it, because they would also become a more attractive as a rental or sale.
 

oldschool

DJ Extraordinaire
Jun 25, 2018
186
58
The time doesn't matter because there's no deadline, no immediate need for these speakers which is what a relevant comparison to new purchases requires.
Material cost is 20% for passives, and about 50% for actives. So, creating new modern inventory from unused older resources in my downtown would be well worth it, because they would also become a more attractive as a rental or sale.
Cant you just refinish the outside and make them look new but leave the internals alone.
People that I know that work for GC are telling me that they are eliminating all passive gear new or used. Once they sell out of what they have it will be powered everything. They are not even buying used passive gear anymore. The biggest thing I have against powered speakers is none of them offer an option if the amp craps out, the speaker is dead and useless until the amp is replaced or repaired. They do not offer an option to switch from powered or passive.
 
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Proformance

DJ Extraordinaire
Nov 6, 2006
3,310
Cant you just refinish the outside and make them look new but leave the internals alone.
People that I know that work for GC are telling me that they are eliminating all passive gear new or used. Once they sell out of what they have it will be powered everything. They are not even buying used passive gear anymore. The biggest thing I have against powered speakers is none of them offer an option if the amp craps out, the speaker is dead and useless until the amp is replaced or repaired. They do not offer an option to switch from powered or passive.
Yes powered speakers mean you have to have an entire unit as backup. They're not often field serviceable the way passive cabs are.

My JBLs are presently in stage cabs (rectangle) and I want the versatility of using them as wedges, and finishing a pair of them in white as well for white stage sets, or ceiling mount. New boxes will do that for me. I'll probably keep them as passive because that's more convenient in the applications I'd likley use them.

You can't switch most most modern active speakers to passive because they are integrated for such high efficiency that the specialized drivers would probably get overloaded by a conventional external amplifier without DSP. Making my custom cabs "active" is not quite the same thing, the internal power efficiency is not going to change. The amps I add locally are still driving speakers with heavier coils/magnets and have to appear at the inputs with the same profile as an external amp at the end of a 50 or 100 foot cable run.
 
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Lish Lash

Active DJ
Feb 19, 2019
33
67
Has anyone converted passive cabs to active?
I'm still debating whether I want to want to take on the project of updating speaker enclosures, and if I do, I'm considering turning some of them them in to active systems at the same time.
I've converted passive subs to active with mixed results. The sticking point is making sure the plate amp won't wind up burping like a car trunk sub. The air flow inside a bass reflex cabinet eliminates the need for a fan to keep the power amp's heat sinks cool. But that air pressure finds its way into the smallest gaps in seals between the face plate and the cabinet and input sockets. I had to use liberal amounts of hot glue and generally made a mess of it, but did finally seal it up.
 

steve149

Veni, Vidi, Lusi
Staff member
Sep 26, 2011
33,150
Prospect, CT
IMHO, in general, Apple has always appealed more to the Plug'n Play type personality.
Maybe it's people who use Macs can't handle much beyond that ... :)
 
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