Building v buying hifi speakers

Discussion in 'music, bands, clubs & festies' started by moody, May 31, 2019.

  1. moody

    moody Being alive increases risk of death.

    I've been looking at getting some new floorstanding speakers for a while now.

    I want to use them for public use, so part of a hifi end system for playing at small venues, like the loft parties.

    So pairs I've been looking at are by Klipsch, they are bi-wireable so can be bi-amped for which I will use a pair of arcam power amps.

    But would the same amount of money, say 700-900 get me a better pair if I were to buy the components and get some cabinets built?

    Has anyone any experience of such a venture, anything to look out for?
  2. editor

    editor hiraethified

    I'd be tempted to just get a compact set of powered PA speakers + sub. I think you'd get better value and a more robust sound, but I guess it depends on how loud you want to go!
  3. beesonthewhatnow

    beesonthewhatnow going deaf for a living

    Just buy a proper pair of PA speakers.
    Chemical needs and editor like this.
  4. moody

    moody Being alive increases risk of death.

    I'm after a decent sound rather than out and out loudness, it's why I'm thinking hifi not pa
  5. moody

    moody Being alive increases risk of death.

    looking at building speakers, looks bit complicated what with endless cabinet designs and crossover jagon
  6. editor

    editor hiraethified

    You might be surprised how good modern PAs can sound. But either way you're going to have to compromise because a hi-fi system isn't going to be so good for small venues.
    Chemical needs likes this.
  7. rutabowa

    rutabowa LOSE IT

    I'd say modern PA equipment has probably had loads more testing for its sound quality than any hifi equipment... whilst i share your love of old esoteric equipment, in the end i came to the conclusion it is a rich persons hobby, a money pit.

    Buuut if you want to do it I reckon there will be answers closer to what you're after here: Forums
    Chemical needs and friedaweed like this.
  8. friedaweed

    friedaweed Sitting down for a wee

    My pal builds speakers in Sweden using vintage hifi and modern tech. He's a total geek for it he had me climbing in a skip with him in Copenhagen the other week to grab some 70's floor standers that someone was throwing out, they really do sound nice when he's built them.

    Sprocket., hash tag, Nivag and 3 others like this.
  9. friedaweed

    friedaweed Sitting down for a wee

    Good thread :D
    Dublin Spice Girls PA is “Terrible”
  10. Poi E

    Poi E Well-Known Member

    DSP these days can overcome many perceived sonic ills if using PAs domestically, and cheaply.
  11. teuchter

    teuchter je suis teuchter

    I don't see how you would save any money getting speakers built for you.

    On the other hand if you build them yourself, and are happy to ignore the 'cost' of your own time, then you can get some good results.

    I built myself some large floorstanding speakers and am very pleased with them.

    What sounds good as living room hifi isn't necessarily going to be any good on a dancefloor packed with people though.
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2019
    gentlegreen likes this.
  12. gentlegreen

    gentlegreen Bulla liberali in perpetuum.

    I'm a planar speaker fan myself - but a decent pair of even original Quad ESLs are silly money these days and I wouldn't even used my stacked pairs for a party.

    With modern design and printing techniques, you can DIY planar speakers if you're majorly keen.

    joppe peelen

    If I get my "rave barn" in retirement, I will be looking for some speakers with a bit of oomph for party use - and being stuck in the sticks with a lack of talent for distance driving I will probably have to settle for whatever I can find second-hand.
  13. moody

    moody Being alive increases risk of death.

    I have a pair of kef q series floorstanders here, detail is fantastic but not good for high volumes.
  14. moody

    moody Being alive increases risk of death.

    the venues I am looking at are cafes and small bars. I think a decent hifi set up would be fine for these
  15. editor

    editor hiraethified

    You'll be surprised by how much volume/bass you might need if those places get busy. I really think a hi-fi set up is not the way forward, especially as there's always the chance the speakers will get knocked over.
    Chemical needs likes this.
  16. moody

    moody Being alive increases risk of death.

    any decent sounding small pa systems then, around 500w to a k?

    and not just for playing dance music either
  17. editor

    editor hiraethified

    I'm very partial to my Mackie Thump 15" powered speakers. Hook up a bass bin and you'll have a great sound, and all within your budget.

    Some great deals here Home | WhyBuyNew
  18. pesh

    pesh Well-Known Member

    QSC K range
  19. DJWrongspeed

    DJWrongspeed radio eros

    Yup, i nearly bought one of their range. I did some research and they came out top in terms of quality sound and powered PA. In the end I wasn't sure I had the space to store them.

    Mackie are brilliantly robust and loud but not for anything audiophile.

    By all means go ahead an build your own moody but if it's for public use I'd want all the safeguards & robustness a manufactured PA has built in.
  20. editor

    editor hiraethified

    They're brilliant but really expensive. I'm quite surprised how good the Mackies sound, to be honest - and this is coming from someone who was once so audiophile-tastic I owned a Roksan Xerxes ten-ton turntable.
    Chemical needs and Poi E like this.
  21. Poi E

    Poi E Well-Known Member

    Also consider durability. Home hi-fi speakers will get chipped and damaged and are not designed for moving out and about, and are not as ready to handle drinks spills etc. With PA systems you also get XLR cabling which is nice and easy to set up with no worries about which end goes where etc. great for fast set-ups. Pro/PA also comes with overload protection for when you unplug or short things while powered up.

    I've got a Klipsch reference centre speaker and it is fantastic for a centre speaker. Great vocals, high sensitivity without the honking sound. However, the corners would last five minutes moving them in and out and before long you'll have MDF chips all over the place.

    don't buy new. hifi idiots upgrade every year and sell their stuff cheap.:thumbs:

    Last edited: Jun 4, 2019
    ringo and editor like this.
  22. moody

    moody Being alive increases risk of death.

    had a look, just one of their speakers is my complete budget
  23. editor

    editor hiraethified

    2x Mackie Thump 15s + 15" subwoofer = inbudget = sorted! :thumbs:
    Chemical needs likes this.
  24. moody

    moody Being alive increases risk of death.

    I did use a mackie active system for the last party I did, I was told it was around a k, I only had it turned up about 60% and the sound was pretty good and that was outdoors too.

    I am attracted to the hifi idea as I think sound quality will be better
  25. editor

    editor hiraethified

    It will be better if you're sitting on your own in an ideal placement for the stereo mix. It won't be better in a room full of people milling about and potentially knocking things about/spilling drinks etc, and it definitely won't be better for moving around. But I've given you my opinion now, so I'm out!
    Chemical needs and moody like this.
  26. Supine

    Supine Rough Like Badger

    I used proper Hifi speakers at a big party once. Big ones too. I blew them up :(
  27. editor

    editor hiraethified

    You won't be the first!
  28. Chemical needs

    Chemical needs stirring

    I've used my hi-fi speakers at a house warming party in a living room. They were not loud enough. That was with two pairs of book shelf speakers (including Mission 701's - not exactly high end, but they can pump it out) and an active subwoofer.

    Get PA.
    editor likes this.
  29. pesh

    pesh Well-Known Member

    Secondhand the K12s can go for about a grand a pair, K8s are about £800 or so... They're not cheap but they're fucking ace for the money
  30. Supine

    Supine Rough Like Badger

    Or that last by the sounds of things :D

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