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Alternative driver for P Audio DIY/115s plans

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Category: Plans
Forum Name: Ported Enclosures
Forum Description: Post all your reflex and bandpass and 'other' boxes with holes in stuff here...
Printed Date: 04 December 2022 at 9:16am
Software Version: Web Wiz Forums 12.05 -

Topic: Alternative driver for P Audio DIY/115s plans
Posted By: sarsen1
Subject: Alternative driver for P Audio DIY/115s plans
Date Posted: 22 January 2021 at 2:49pm
Hi all,

looking to build two of these:" rel="nofollow - DIY-115S.pdf (  for use as subs in a PA style and as mid bass (75-120ish hz) between my XB loaded mini scoops and 12"+1.4" tops. But I can't seem to find any of the recommended drivers in the UK anymore. 

Could anyone please recommend an available driver that would be happy in this box in the £100 - £150 range that would be happy to do a reasonable job as both mid bass and standalone bass duties. 

Leaning towards this box over Fane and B and C plan as its is the exact same width as my scoops and looks like a nice easy build...

Posted By: bob4
Date Posted: 23 January 2021 at 12:37pm
Do some homework........

Don't know your criteria, but that box is kind of big (rough estimate 150 litr es) and tuned high (43 Hz according to datasheet)....

Calculate precise volume of cabinet, model it in winisd with available drivers. It wouldnt hurt to do the same for other designs and compare .....

You need to define some requirements in order to make an informed decision.........

How loud does it need to go in kick use?
How low and loud should the sub go when used as standalone sub?

Posted By: DMorison
Date Posted: 23 January 2021 at 2:29pm
If you want to stay P.Audio," rel="nofollow - this seems to model adequately.
Disclaimer, I haven't actually used it, so relying only on WinISD for that.
I'm not convinced there's much point trying for anything super high powered as 2 100mm vents isn't going to be enough to support large excursion drivers at low frequency anyway.

Posted By: sarsen1
Date Posted: 23 January 2021 at 8:18pm
Thanks both for your replies, I do just need to get up to speed with WinISD but being stuck on Mac is my (poor) excuse.

Thanks DMorison for taking the time to sim the E-15lf, much appreciated. Was thinking either this or Fane Sov 15-600lf as it’s only £95 on thomann but perhaps the extra £ for the p audio is worth it...

Not expecting serious sub from these just enough to use in small venues and put kick and bass though for small live band gigs (whenever that will be a thing again) and then to provide enough midbass to keep up with my humble xb loaded minis. So nothing crazy!

Posted By: DMorison
Date Posted: 24 January 2021 at 1:31pm
Remember that since Brexit Thomann are showing prices EX-VAT so you will be at least 20% higher plus any admin fees from the carrier for sorting that out for you which will take it back up to virtually the same price as the P.Audio anyway.
Below is a comparison of the 2 drivers in this cab.
I've assumed a more extended definition of Xmax for the P.Audio as they are one of very few PA driver manufacturers who use a very conservative, hifi style definition of that parameter - the more common approach for PA drivers gives it a couple of mm more useable movement. 
This is what allows it to be pushed harder than the Fane, plus it naturally has a more extended LF in that box, so for standalone bass use it should be capable of sounding a bit more impressive at the bottom end.
The trade off is that it does need a bigger amp, so depending on what you have available, that may increase your costs, and the aforementioned issues with vent air speed - at this SPL, it'd really be better to build a shelf vent, though that changes the plan and eats into the box volume, reducing available LF.


Posted By: sarsen1
Date Posted: 24 January 2021 at 5:00pm
Thanks so much for taking the time to do the comparison David, much appreciated!

Thought it was too good to be true with Thomann prices... 

So I could either crack on with the Fane (or perhaps Emmy kappa LF as that looks like it might be suited to a larger box) and the plan as is and get okay results, or wait until April when the P Audio is expected back in stock to work out the shelf vent modifications in the meantime and get better results... looks like the homework continues.

Posted By: DMorison
Date Posted: 25 January 2021 at 1:40pm
Yeah, that E15-LF isn't ideal if you want to get on with the project quickly.
If the slightly lower output of the Fane isn't a deal breaker there are a couple of other options to consider.
The Kappa 15LF does get slightly deeper than the Fane in this box, and the difference in SPL above 60-odd Hz is small enough to ignore IMO.
Slightly left-field is a cheaper P.Audio - the E15-300S. It's meant more as a general purpose bass-mid unit, but if the same Xmax definition is used that I mentioned before it can actually do a little better then either the Fane or the Kappa in this box, and is cheaper & lighter than either to boot.

By the way, do you have any other requirements/preferences for box dimensions? I know you mentioned the width matching your mini-scoops, do you want depth to match too for example?
I can do a provisional plan with slot ports if you want, but knowing any other size factors like that would help.
Also, if you were to start with something cheap like the E15-300S now, would you want to consider upgrading to a more potent driver in the future? If so, sizing the ports to handle that now would be a lot less work than modding an already-built box later ;-)

Posted By: sarsen1
Date Posted: 25 January 2021 at 4:02pm
Amazing! Thank you again for your help...

I think going for the cheap E15-300s at the moment looks like a great option if the performance is acceptable and the costs are low! But would certainly like to have the option to upgrade to more powerful driver in the future if I went with a 300w driver right now. So if did you had the time to knock up a rough sketch of the plan with slot ports that would be a huge help and greatly appreciated!

I suppose the only size factors that would matter for me would be 600mm wide to match the scoops, deep enough to be stable when pole mounting the tops when used in a PA style and also keeping enough height to keep the tops above heads when on top of the 900mm high minis would be beneficial. But I think the dimensions of the plan as is are pretty close to what I would need.


Posted By: DMorison
Date Posted: 26 January 2021 at 4:59pm
Alrighty then, this should have everything on it, shout if you think anything's not clear or just straight up missing (click image for link to fullsize if it doesn't render properly in the forum).

I've sized the ports to give decent airspeed even with top end drivers like Beyma 15LEX1600Nd with 14.5mm Xmax, that does mean the airspeed with an entry level driver like E15-300S is hilariously low.
The box is a few cm taller then the P.Audio original to accommodate that big a port without too much penalty in lost volume. Tuning should come out at 45Hz, higher would be marginally better for the E15-300S but would be worse for drivers like the Beyma, so it's a bit of a compromise. 

The graphs below show the 15LEX1600Nd vs the E15-300S, as you can see the Beyma can do 9dB more at 50Hz, that's about the equivalent of three of the P.Audios, FWIW. Above 70Hz, it only takes 2 P.Audios to keep up with the Beyma. These graphs have HPF's in place for excursion control below tuning, 38Hz Butt24 for the Beyma and 36Hz Butt24 for the E15-300S.

Allowing for drivers like the Beyma is why I've also beefed up the bracing just a little bit.

I haven't specified the exact location for the handles, just shown an example of a typical bar handle. Ideally you'd build the box, load the driver then check exactly where the centre of gravity comes out and mount the handle there - this in turn means the exact height of the horizontal braces is also not set in stone yet.

David." rel="nofollow">

Posted By: sarsen1
Date Posted: 26 January 2021 at 5:50pm
You are a hero David thank you! Looks Awesome.

Going to get the driver ordered and wood cut this week hopefully so can get a prototype knocked up asap, will keep you posted...

Thanks so much for taking the time to do this, I really appreciate the help. Not everyone would take the time to help a stranger like this Clap

Posted By: DMorison
Date Posted: 26 January 2021 at 8:49pm
You're welcome!
It's not that I don't geek out about designs like this half the time anyway, and with lockdown etc, time is one thing I absolutely have plenty of, soo  Wink

BTW, Just updated the plan with a bit extra info re driver mounting - in case it wasn't clear, with the vent that big, there wouldn't be room for the driver bolt holes & T-Nuts if you tried to position them at 12 & 6 o'clock etc, so you'll need to rotate the driver 1/16th of a turn to get enough clearance.


Posted By: sarsen1
Date Posted: 27 January 2021 at 3:15pm
Brilliant, thanks again!

Drivers and hardware ordered, waiting on a quote for wood. Prices will determine whether I go MDF, cheaper ply or BB grade birch. This will only be my second build so don't want to splash too much for birch just yet...

Posted By: DMorison
Date Posted: 28 January 2021 at 3:29pm
Proper Birch if you think you're at all likely to stick in a serious driver at any point in the future, IMO.

If you imagine you'll be happy with lower output long term, then maybe cheaper wood, though if that were the case you could have saved on including quite such a huge vent.


Posted By: sarsen1
Date Posted: 05 February 2021 at 10:05am
Going okay so far, balanced the panels together and it looks like a speaker!" rel="nofollow">

Posted By: DMorison
Date Posted: 05 February 2021 at 1:24pm
Looking good so far! Thumbs Up

Posted By: sarsen1
Date Posted: 19 March 2021 at 2:37pm
Finally got round to finishing these (need some more screws in the grills), very pleased with how they ended up and glad I have completed my first speaker build. Only tested in my little studio but pleasantly surprised with the £60 300w p-audio. Interested to see how they would sound with better drivers for stand alone use in a PA style.

Thanks DMorison for sharing your knowledge, spending the time doing dims and putting the plan together!

Posted By: DMorison
Date Posted: 20 March 2021 at 1:32pm
Hey, you're welcome.
Looks like good work finishing up the boxes, I'm glad they sound good to you so far.
Obviously, when you do get to push them harder will be the real test, but they should at least get you by for a bit with that driver.
Assuming you do grow out of them at some point, the large port is ready to take considerably more output from a beefier driver, so you don't have to replace the whole box.

Posted By: sarsen1
Date Posted: 05 April 2022 at 4:01pm
Sorry to dig up an old post but its driver upgrade time, do you think this box would work well with Oberton 15XB700?

Posted By: DMorison
Date Posted: 06 April 2022 at 4:09pm
Hi again, hope the boxes have served you well so far.

That Oberton isn't an ideal match, unfortunately: it's really optimised for a smaller box than this.
That means it'll have a peaky response at the bottom of its range. While that can be EQ'd, there is a school of though that peaky responses like this also go hand in hand with slower, sloppier bass, to use subjective terms. I haven't personally tested this, but I'm a bit reluctant to endorse an alignment that may have that problem.

Assuming that driver indicates your preferred budget, there are a few other options that should give similar output (ie 3-4dB more than your current drivers) with less (or no) risk of that peakiness causing a "slow" response.

The Celestion & 18 Sound have a slight risk of peakiness but as it's only ~1/2 the amount of the Oberton my gut instinct is that it would not really be a problem. They're also the most expensive of this group at approx £245 ea (@ Lean Business), which might be above your target a bit.

The Beyma & Eminence have no hint of the peakiness at all, so should sound very similar to your current drivers when used in the bass range. They're about £210-220 @ Blue Aran so closer to the Oberton.


Posted By: DMorison
Date Posted: 06 April 2022 at 4:27pm
PS, If you can afford to wait a bit there are another couple of drivers that look quite handy in this, from BMS & B&C. They're both reasonably cheap, but Blue Aran are advising longer lead times for them, so not sure if that's any use to you or not.

Posted By: sarsen1
Date Posted: 06 April 2022 at 5:35pm
Thank you for this, I was going to pick up a pair of new (second hand) obertons tomorrow so will hold fire now!

The B&C 15RBX100 looks worth waiting for, I may have just found another distributor with some too so we shall see.


Posted By: DMorison
Date Posted: 06 April 2022 at 7:55pm
Good point, I forgot to check JP Leisure, they seem like they might be in stock there, if that's not already the other source you're referring to.

Posted By: JonB67
Date Posted: 07 April 2022 at 7:07am
Get the BMS from leanaudio / lean business. They have then in stock.  Fantastic sounding drivers, you won't regret it.  

Posted By: sarsen1
Date Posted: 07 April 2022 at 3:01pm
Called JP leisure and was the same lead time as Blue Aran for the B&C, so have ordered the BMS from lean business as in stock and reasonable price Big smile thanks for your help. Had a listen to the boxes with the P audio's in again last night and with tops on poles and the two subs in the middle they make a great sound so cant wait to load them with something more substantial! 

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