Can drivers be changed for SLA PRO / TLAH PRO speakers?

Short and Transmission Line Arrays for Pros
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hallcon83
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Can drivers be changed for SLA PRO / TLAH PRO speakers?

#1 Post by hallcon83 » Wed Dec 29, 2021 1:50 pm

Hello, I was wondering if these Planar drivers can be substituted for the standard speaker drivers in your SLA PRO or TLAH PRO speakers -

(many of those that have heard the Planar drivers say they are the best speakers they have heard).


Here is the data Sheet for the GRS PT6816-8 , 8" Slim Tweeters -
-- https://www.parts-express.com/pedocs/sp ... -sheet.pdf


Here is the data Sheet for the GRS PT5010-8 10" Planar Mid / Tweeter
-- https://www.parts-express.com/pedocs/sp ... -sheet.pdf


------------ ( I realize that the Planar Mid/tweeters will have to be crossed over Woofers Subwoofers at approx. 250hz. )



----

- I have been very interested in High efficiency speakers , and originally I was looking at building a Horn Speaker similar to the Volti Vitorra - I spent two days listening to them at an audio show and really liked them..... But then recently I started reading about and watching the reviews of GR Research's new speaker - the Line Force Speakers , ( they use the B&G Neo3 and B&G Neo10 Planar drivers), after reading all about them and watching all the reviews I became VERY Interested in them, they are High Efficiency as well, and People that have heard them say they may be some of the top Audiophile speakers in the world, in fact everyone is going so far as to say they have redefined how good Audiophile Speakers can sound.
Unfortunately they are Very expensive and use very hard to get drivers, the GR Research Speaker pre-built is - $27,000.00 , and even the KIT when the drivers become available will be around - $11,000 - $12,000.00 ... ouch - 😶 - Way outside my ability....

I have asked Danny at GR Research whether I could build line source style speakers that are half the size or a little smaller, but he has said that the speakers have to be almost floor to ceiling to work without lobing and other problems.......

-- Recently I visited your website because I came across some speakers that appeared to be similar to small line source speakers, but after reading about them he said they were TLAH speakers.... They looked very nice, and were small enough to be affordable too -

-- The builder said ---

" I just finished building these towers for my hifi system. The design is from Bill Fitzmaurice, and is called the TLAH. The TLAH combines the features of a line-array, transmission line, and horn loaded enclosures. Each tower contains 9 4" mids, and 12 1/2" tweeters. The top of the cab is open, creating an 80hz tapered transmission line. They are designed to be placed with the port against the wall, for a sort of horn loading effect. This helps them maintain 99dB efficiency down to 80hz. -- I am very happy with my entire system now "

-- Here is the Link to the speakers he built ---
- https://www.stevemeadedesigns.com/board ... wer-build/


- So very recently I found out that there are new versions of the B&G Neo Planar drivers that are being sold by a different company - GRS - ( no relation to GR Research ) -- they are selling drivers that appear to be the same or very close to the same drivers that B&G used to sell -- the Neo10 Mids, Neo8 Mid/Tweeters, and Neo8 Slim Line Tweeters -- and they are about half the price of the past Neo drivers, but still are too expensive because of the amount of drivers needed to complete GR Research's Line Force's , they need 12 of the Neo 10 drivers @ $149.00 ea. - and 12 or 14 of the Neo8 Slim Line Tweeters @ $50.00 ea. ....... about $2,500.00 for just the drivers, and the crossovers use some of the Best parts available which adds a lot to the price too .

- My Question is can your TLAH be adapted to use the GRS Planar drivers?


- The reason I am interested in those drivers is that they seem to be some of the best sounding drivers that people have ever heard - (at least that is the consensus) , so if your TLAH or the PRO version of your TLAH can be adapted I would be a very happy man.


Thank you,
Best regards, Dean


------------------------------------------------


- For anyone interested here are two pictures of the GR Research Line Force Speakers

-- https://www.audiosciencereview.com/foru ... jpg.33621/

-- https://i.ytimg.com/vi/XgoR2PLEZsk/maxresdefault.jpg

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Bill Fitzmaurice
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Re: Can drivers be changed for SLA PRO / TLAH PRO speakers?

#2 Post by Bill Fitzmaurice » Wed Dec 29, 2021 2:10 pm

You can't swap planars for cone midbasses, they don't work the same way. That's why most of the specs say N/A. You could use planar tweeters, but you'd have to figure out the crossover. Besides, what makes planars sound good in a line array isn't that they're planars, it's that they're in a line array.

hallcon83
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Re: Can drivers be changed for SLA PRO / TLAH PRO speakers?

#3 Post by hallcon83 » Fri Dec 31, 2021 12:42 pm

Hi Bill thank you for looking into my questions.

- If I could ask another question , I was wondering how some speaker companies like ALON , McIntosh, and many others can make what appears to be short Line Arrays work when they are only using 4 or 5 feet of drivers in a line? -- the reason I am asking is that I was advised that line need to be almost floor to ceiling to work without severe lobing and cancelation problems.

Thank you, Dean

-- ( Also recently Vaughn Audio use a line array of FE83's I believe that was about 4 -5 feet high - - and the speaker got rave reviews at the show it was a cool design - it had a plasma tweeter on top and two woofers woofers on the sides.)

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Re: Can drivers be changed for SLA PRO / TLAH PRO speakers?

#4 Post by Bill Fitzmaurice » Fri Dec 31, 2021 1:01 pm

hallcon83 wrote:
Fri Dec 31, 2021 12:42 pm
I was advised that line need to be almost floor to ceiling to work without severe lobing and cancelation problems.
That advice could only come from two sources: those who don't sell line arrays, and those who only sell floor to ceiling line arrays. If you understand what causes lobing and cancellation you can see right through that nonsense. As for Vaughn Audio's arrays, I don't care for mixing a line array of midbasses with point source tweeters. IME you get better results with a line of tweeters.

hallcon83
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Re: Can drivers be changed for SLA PRO / TLAH PRO speakers?

#5 Post by hallcon83 » Sat Jan 01, 2022 11:30 am

Hi Bill,
Thank you for your help, it's great to be able ask questions and know your getting the truth.

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Re: Can drivers be changed for SLA PRO / TLAH PRO speakers?

#6 Post by Bill Fitzmaurice » Sat Jan 01, 2022 12:11 pm

Don't believe me, believe the guys who've built them. They're the real voices of reason. :)

ACUA
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Re: Can drivers be changed for SLA PRO / TLAH PRO speakers?

#7 Post by ACUA » Sat Jan 01, 2022 5:20 pm

I just completed a pair of Tlah speakers. I also have a small line array configuration of Omnitop12 cabs, see attached photos. I was able to build my Tlah speakers for super cheap using buyout speakers. I have under $300 invested and that includes the filter components, speakers, wood, glue, stain, wire, etc.

I have been on this forum a while now, I haven’t found a better product if you are into DIY. You will have to easily spend $1500 or more to buy commercially available speakers as good or better than a properly built Tlah. Are there better speakers out there I am sure there must be. There are a lot of the products such as GR Research selling flashy snake oil? Yes, they are. Sound, like many things in physics, is logarithmic, in that the point of diminishing return occurs pretty early on and the difference between a $10k and $100k home theater system is very little.

If you have a certain demographic to impress or just have millions of dollars burning a hole in your pocket by all means buy or build whatever you want. If you are on a budget I see no better speaker option today than the Tlah. It is transmission line, line array, pretty small form factor and cheaper than any other option I have ever seen. They are pretty easy to build. They are awesome, I wish I had designed them!
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Re: Can drivers be changed for SLA PRO / TLAH PRO speakers?

#8 Post by Bill Fitzmaurice » Sat Jan 01, 2022 6:06 pm

Looking at your OTop arrays made me think of something. If a line needs to be almost floor to ceiling to work without severe lobing and cancellation problems how do they work outdoors? :bash:

Nice stands, BTW. :hyper:

hallcon83
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Re: Can drivers be changed for SLA PRO / TLAH PRO speakers?

#9 Post by hallcon83 » Sun Jan 02, 2022 9:32 pm

Thanks, I will most likely buy the plans and see what the options are for drivers, so far I really like the design behind the TLAH speakers.

I guess my only hesitation is that.... I am sure from what I have read about them that they are a very very good speaker for the money, but I was hoping that my next speaker might be my last speaker ,

- I have been an audiophile for over 25 years and have had quite few systems in the past, and I Just sold my main speakers that I really liked they weren't perfect but they did a lot of things really well - (my speakers were really good speakers and originally were - $4,500.00 when they came out.... and I recently sold a few other of my speakers too, like Magnapan III A's, and Ryan Acoustic speakers ) - I also sold my VTL 350 watt Tube Monoblock amplifiers -- both the Speakers and the Amplifiers were rated in Class A in Stereophile and other Magazines....
- One of my problems was we moved to Texas a while back and it's too hot here for the 16 KT88 tubes in my amplifiers , so my plan was to find the best High Efficiency speaker design I could build that was currently either rated in Class-A in the magazines or was thought to be one of the best designs available. So basically my next speaker needs to be better than what I sold, but it also needs to be a High Efficiency design too.

- One of the reasons for selling my audio equipment was I always wanted to build my own audio equipment - I want to build small SS and small Tube Amplifiers and Preamps..... and to do that I needed to build High Efficiency speakers so I wouldn't need three or four hundred watts ----- So my original plan was to build a really good Horn Speaker , most likely a diy clone of Horn Speaker like the Vittora Horn speaker , the Anima Horn speaker , or the Avaton Horn Speakers that were all getting really good reviews at the audio shows ---------------------- (or maybe even a Synergy, or MEH Horn speaker).

- But then......... everyone who has heard the Line Force speaker started making remarks like -- "they had never heard anything like the Line Force at any Audio Show" ............... or -- "they never heard anything like it at any Audio equipment showroom they had ever been to" - and that -- "it was all they could think about for days after hearing it".

- You are a lot more experienced and I understand why you probably think it isn't that great or special of a speaker, you have probably almost heard it all...
- But GR has been using custom designed drivers in their line source speakers for a while now. And of their 15 or 20 speaker kits their top of the line speaker kits were the line source kits. Fairly recently they started having the Neo 3 drivers modified and custom made for them... and even they were very surprised by what the Neo 3 and Neo10 Planar drivers sounded like together in a line source...

- I guess when I hear things like that from reviewers and from a whole bunch of audio guys on forums it's hard not to get excited about a design too, it's a problem when you want the best, but can't afford it - LOL .

hallcon83
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Re: Can drivers be changed for SLA PRO / TLAH PRO speakers?

#10 Post by hallcon83 » Sun Jan 02, 2022 9:36 pm

Hi ACUA , Nice looking speakers.

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Re: Can drivers be changed for SLA PRO / TLAH PRO speakers?

#11 Post by Bill Fitzmaurice » Sun Jan 02, 2022 10:31 pm

I've been happy with my TLAH for going on 20 years now. If I found them wanting I wouldn't hesitate to come up with something better, but I don't. You may use more expensive drivers than those recommended in the plans. You could even spend $10k on drivers if you went all out. But realistically you'd reach the point of diminishing returns at around $500.
On the subject of reviewers, I ignore them. One of the most influential is Steve Guttenberg, who IMO hasn't got the slightest clue about what he's talking about. Another hack is John Atkinson at Stereophile, who never met the speaker he didn't like, so long as they bought enough ad space in his magazine. As for audio shows, they exist for the sole purpose of convincing people to part with their money, as much of it as possible. I used to frequent some forums, but stopped years ago, as the inmates had taken over the asylums. There was a time when I didn't shy away from lively discussions, but now I'd rather play golf. :D

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