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Zaph Audio ZA5.2 Speaker Build

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Project by Jim Y posted 451 days ago 1968 views 5 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch

These were our first set of speakers. I decided to go with a proven design and the Zaph kits from Madisound were well regarded. My soldering skills are not up to snuff, so I bought the crossovers pre-assembled.
We found the walnut veneer on CL for a great price and went with the iron on method. Hardest part was wrapping it around the round over on the baffle. We finished them with Watco danish oil by wet sanding it in with the grain on the first coat, and wiping the remaining. I think we applied about 5 coats total.

Sorry I don’t have any assembly pics, this was our first “real” project and we were too wrapped up to grab the camera.

Under the speaker boxes in the second pic, you can see my 1934 Delta Uni. More on that on another post.





6 comments so far

View Gianni's profile

Gianni

104 posts in 474 days


#1 posted 451 days ago

These turned out nice. I wonder how many of us got into woodworking because of our audiophile habit.

View Jim Y's profile

Jim Y

6 posts in 452 days


#2 posted 451 days ago

Thanks. There are a few whoopsies in there, but I’m very happy with how they turned out.
I had always wanted to try my hand at speaker building. The hard part for me is the designing. I bought the Speaker Design Cookbook and was intimidated by the formulas and graphs. I think that’s what makes the Zaph kits so great. John Krutke did all the heavy lifting with the measurements and testing. All I had to do was build a box.

View BigRedKnothead's profile

BigRedKnothead

3545 posts in 482 days


#3 posted 451 days ago

Cool. Never even thought about making my own speaker boxes.

-- Red -- “I ain't as good as I'm gonna get....but I'm better than I used to be."

View Tomoose's profile

Tomoose

278 posts in 1873 days


#4 posted 451 days ago

Those are awesome – I have long been looking at buying that exact kit and now you have probably pushed me over the edge. Is MDF the way to go since it is so dense and acoustically inert? I think I am intimidated to try veneering…

Can you post a sample of how they sound? ;)

Tom

-- cut it twice and it's still too short...

View Gianni's profile

Gianni

104 posts in 474 days


#5 posted 450 days ago

There are aome pretty good online calculators that plot the response and let you tweak the box and port size to see the effect. Much easier than the old days with the scribbles and calculator.

View Jim Y's profile

Jim Y

6 posts in 452 days


#6 posted 449 days ago

After a bunch of looking around, I went with MDF for two reasons – stability and acoustically dead. Also, I had it on hand and I couldn’t seem to rabbet plywood w/o it splintering all to heck.
The PVA iron on method was dead easy and has so far (over a year) held up. I wouldn’t recommend it for a critical application but for covering a speaker box, I think there’s little risk of movement, especially with the MDF as a substrate.

I have seen the online calculators and such, but as adventurous as I am in building a set I haven’t heard, there are at least some reviews on their performance. Eventually I plan to strike out on my own, but not til I build THESE

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