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#2245500 - 11/14/10 06:34 PM Wood vs. Plastic for speaker cabinets
Dave Ferris Offline
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I've used both, currently own wood but I'm thinking of picking up a pair of discontinued RCF 522As (plastic ) at an excellent price in addition to what I have.

An interesting thread here
http://srforums.prosoundweb.com/index.php/t/62128/0/
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#2245504 - 11/14/10 07:13 PM Re: Wood vs. Plastic for speaker cabinets [Re: Dave Ferris]
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I'm really not a fan of plastic cabs. The best studio monitors I've ever owned (tragically ruined in a flood, and the damned series is D/C'ed, so I can't get them anymore) were a pair of JBL 3-way bookshelfs with 8" drivers in a wood cabinet. I've auditioned the "replacement" version with 6" drivers in a plastic cab, and they're nowhere near the same, despite having identical tweets and mids, along with several dozen other speakers (nearly all plastic cabs), both 2-way and 3-way, and nothing has really hit the mark the way those did.

Of course, I'm pretty much a hater of the 2-way speaker system, because I don't think it effectively covers the midrange and the bass the way a 3-way can, so YMMV.....
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#2245507 - 11/14/10 07:16 PM Re: Wood vs. Plastic for speaker cabinets [Re: Dave Ferris]
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Thanks Dave.
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#2245518 - 11/14/10 08:22 PM Re: Wood vs. Plastic for speaker cabinets [Re: ITGITC?]
MikeT156 Offline
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Dave thanks for the posting that link. The post I liked was by John Roberts:

"Wood has it's own resonance and can either subtract or add to the tone significantly. Plastic, not so much. Wood can and will reduce distortion. Plastic, not so much. Wood gives me wood. Plastic, not so much."

Cute smile

I like wood for live sound. I can understand why people will use plastic cabinets for sound reproduction though, we should hear what was recorded without coloration.


Mike T.
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#2245742 - 11/15/10 03:35 PM Re: Wood vs. Plastic for speaker cabinets [Re: MikeT156]
Mark Schmieder Offline
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Many modern near-fields are listing their material as aluminum (this includes the Focal CMS series and re-branded Neumann KH120, according to what I was told at AES and what I see in the lit).

So, wood and plastic are no longer the only choices. :-)

I prefer wood, but it's becoming rarer, even in the mid-price range. And thankfully manufacturers are getting better at dealing with the unique resonance problems of other materials.

Just replaced my KRK Rokit 6's with 5" JBL 2325's, and don't notice any pecularities that I would assign to enclosure material. Even the newish M-Audio digital speakers are amazingly good for their price and relatively free of artefacts.

The two-way vs. three-way debate is entirely separate. I would never buy a three-way speaker for close-monitoring. I think the three-way design is far more effective when there is more distance between you and the speaker, such as when you have a mixing desk that pushes the speakers further away from your head while you are monitoring than does the typical computer-plus-speakers desktop arrangement in small home-based project studios.
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#2246020 - 11/16/10 01:44 PM Re: Wood vs. Plastic for speaker cabinets [Re: Mark Schmieder]
ProfD Offline
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There are so many variables i.e. type of gig, location, audience, sound engineer, etc.

First, it really comes down to how much one wants to spend and haul around. Most important is well the sound system is run. cool
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#2246520 - 11/18/10 11:16 AM Re: Wood vs. Plastic for speaker cabinets [Re: ProfD]
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November 18, 2010 | By Roman Cruz - Source : Tom's Guide US
Grado RS-1i Enhances Music with Mahogany

Tags:grado , RS1i , Mahogany , Headphones
Yep, they're made of wood, so you have to pay more.

The digital age has given us really tiny portable music players, capacitance touchscreens, and crystal clear music at high compression rates. While most would hail that a triumph of progress, there's a school of thought in music that something gets lost in the digital translation. To these hardcore aficionados, nothing beats the warmth and crunchiness of analog.




The Grado RS1i headphones seems to be marketed towards that particular demographic. Each open-backed cup is carved from mahogany, which Grado claims gives this set a "smooth, controlled and coherent sound with detailed dynamics". It's got a frequency response range of 12 to 30 kHz, and drivers matched to 0.05 dB.


Style and performance don't come cheap, though. The RS1i sells for over $600 at Amazon. That's quite an investment for a pair of headphones.


[source: Grado via Cool Material]
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#2246534 - 11/18/10 11:52 AM Re: Wood vs. Plastic for speaker cabinets [Re: ITGITC?]
Steve Force Offline
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Tom (ITGITC) likes wood. Wakes up with Wood. Just sayin.

wink
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#2246550 - 11/18/10 12:22 PM Re: Wood vs. Plastic for speaker cabinets [Re: Steve Force]
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Originally Posted By: forceman
Tom (ITGITC) likes wood. Wakes up with Wood. Just sayin.

wink


laugh

Hey Steve, have you ever read this? You would enjoy it, methinks.

High Tech High Touch: Technology and Our Search for Meaning

I also think it's a really nice addition for Kurzweil to add the wood endcaps on the PC3K8.



The pianist who played for our daughter's wedding reception, is also a woodworker. At lunch today, he was showing me photos of a keyboard stand he built. It's pretty elaborate. And it's portable. It uses the types of connections/hinges that are found in a bedframe. He said something about the top piece being held by magnets. I'll have to see it in person to get a better idea about that. But after seeing some of his other work, I am certain it's over the top nice. If I can get him to send me the pictures, I'll post them on the forum.

BTW, he plays a Nord Piano through one of those Bose stripper poles. blush

Yup. Wood is good!

Tom
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#2246772 - 11/19/10 01:55 PM Re: Wood vs. Plastic for speaker cabinets [Re: ITGITC?]
Steve Force Offline
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Cool! Would love to see some pics of his work.
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#2246788 - 11/19/10 03:08 PM Re: Wood vs. Plastic for speaker cabinets [Re: ITGITC?]
Synthoid Offline
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Originally Posted By: ITGITC?


Tasty.

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#2246869 - 11/19/10 08:35 PM Re: Wood vs. Plastic for speaker cabinets [Re: Steve Force]
Moonglow Offline
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Originally Posted By: forceman
Cool! Would love to see some pics of his work.

Ya know, I was reading the above post, and thankfully, the last two letters of the last word in that sentence weren't od. shocked
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#2248173 - 11/25/10 07:58 AM Re: Wood vs. Plastic for speaker cabinets [Re: Griffinator]
WheelHead Offline
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Registered: 07/15/08
Posts: 359
Originally Posted By: Griffinator
I'm really not a fan of plastic cabs.


I noticed QSC is releasing (on most sites) their wood version of the K (old news I am sure).

Thinking of picking up a couple of kw (1222?) on order tomorrow using Black Friday discounts. Supposedly "K performance in wood". OK, a bit heavier.

I did consider ordering some Bose stuff tomorrow but my view is that the price does not justify. (very well could, but "my view" and not convinced on cost).

W

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#2248187 - 11/25/10 08:42 AM Re: Wood vs. Plastic for speaker cabinets [Re: WheelHead]
Theo Verelst Offline
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you'd think QSC would not just be able to change the plastic to wood technology, or maybe they adjust the transducers and DSP or electronics for that, too ?

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#2248292 - 11/25/10 06:44 PM Re: Wood vs. Plastic for speaker cabinets [Re: Theo Verelst]
WheelHead Offline
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Originally Posted By: Theo Verelst
you'd think QSC would not just be able to change the plastic to wood technology, or maybe they adjust the transducers and DSP or electronics for that, too ?


I think, or my impression, is that they use the same electronics in a couple of different cabs. My guess is the wood version electronics are the same as the plastic cab. Actually this can be good in the way of getting replacement/parts down the road as the cabinets age.

W

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#2248326 - 11/26/10 03:52 AM Re: Wood vs. Plastic for speaker cabinets [Re: WheelHead]
Mr. Nightime Offline
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Originally Posted By: WheelHead
Originally Posted By: Theo Verelst
you'd think QSC would not just be able to change the plastic to wood technology, or maybe they adjust the transducers and DSP or electronics for that, too ?


I think, or my impression, is that they use the same electronics in a couple of different cabs. My guess is the wood version electronics are the same as the plastic cab. Actually this can be good in the way of getting replacement/parts down the road as the cabinets age.

W


They might use similar electronics, but the tuning would have to be different to compensate for the different resonance points. Naturally wood being more porous and flexible will have a more pronounced resonance than the stiffer, non-porous plastic. So in order to get the transparency, they would have to more carefully tune the system.

I remember reading somewhere that the stiffer the material for the cabinet, the less cabinet coloration would happen. According to that, one of the best materials for cabinet transparency would be concrete. Though I wouldn't want to have to lift it.
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#2248407 - 11/26/10 12:05 PM Re: Wood vs. Plastic for speaker cabinets [Re: Mr. Nightime]
PianoMan51 Offline
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Registered: 02/02/10
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... I don't know for sure ....

but I think I play better when I have wood.

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#2248462 - 11/26/10 08:02 PM Re: Wood vs. Plastic for speaker cabinets [Re: PianoMan51]
WheelHead Offline
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Registered: 07/15/08
Posts: 359
Originally Posted By: PianoMan51
... I don't know for sure ....

but I think I play better when I have wood.


After struggling and agonizing of what QSC (just my view, I am sure others like other manufacturers and YMMV) I pulled the trigger on the wood KW1222. I'll see how I like them, obviously. Picked up a KSUB also.

W

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#2248496 - 11/27/10 04:05 AM Re: Wood vs. Plastic for speaker cabinets [Re: WheelHead]
PianoMan51 Offline
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Loc: United States
Originally Posted By: WheelHead
Originally Posted By: PianoMan51
... I don't know for sure ....

but I think I play better when I have wood.


After struggling and agonizing of what QSC (just my view, I am sure others like other manufacturers and YMMV) I pulled the trigger on the wood KW1222. I'll see how I like them, obviously. Picked up a KSUB also.

W


I've never considered 'pulling the trigger on the wood', when I'm playing keyboard. Might have faked it during a dramatic solo.

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#2248500 - 11/27/10 05:47 AM Re: Wood vs. Plastic for speaker cabinets [Re: PianoMan51]
WheelHead Offline
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Registered: 07/15/08
Posts: 359
Originally Posted By: PianoMan51


I've never considered 'pulling the trigger on the wood', when I'm playing keyboard. Might have faked it during a dramatic solo.


Point well taken. The time to be really concerned is when *someone else* wants to pull the trigger when "playing keyboard."

W

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