Zero cost improvement to speaker performance!

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by MonoMania, Sep 12, 2017.

  1. MonoMania

    MonoMania New Member

    Messages:
    25
    Location:
    Canada
    Almost too obvious to mention, but sometimes the obvious is overlooked:

    Periodically tighten (don't over-tighten) any screws on the exterior of the cabinet!

    I rebuilt a pair a few years back, listened to them on a regular basis, but never gave them much thought after I set them on their stands. Gradually I was finding them less satisfying, noticing muddiness in the bass, poorer soundstaging, etc, but hadn't gotten around to investigating...

    It wasn't until a rattle developed on certain bass notes that the lightbulb went on.

    Every screw had been fully tightened a couple years ago, but between the vibration of the cabinet and the expansion/contraction from temperature every single screw on the driver baskets and the rear connector panel had loosened by at least a half-turn, allowing some air to escape around the caulking.

    After re-tightening, everything snapped right back into focus: sound staging back, bass no longer muddy!

    From now on I'll be remembering to include this in my maintenance routine!

    *Of course, not all speakers will have this problem with fasteners, but mine did.
    *Be careful not to over-tighten screws, to avoid bending baskets or warping plastic parts.

    Hopefully someone out there will find this useful.
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2017
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  2. MonoMania

    MonoMania New Member

    Messages:
    25
    Location:
    Canada
    Feel free to add your own "Zero Cost" and/or "Ridiculously Obvious" speaker tips to this thread!
     
    asilker likes this.
  3. MurrayLives

    MurrayLives Born to lose, live to win Subscriber

    Messages:
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    Location:
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    Get your woofers closer to the floor for better bass. Aim your tweeters over your head to elevate the soundstage.
     
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  4. jberger

    jberger AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
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    Location:
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    When stripping speaker wires, leave the positive wire (or marked conductor) approximately 1.5" longer on each end than the negative wire. That way, you'll always know how to get your wiring in phase without looking for the stripe/marking/insulation color.

    This also has the benefit of reducing the chance of shorting the speaker wires, since the tips are farther apart and less likely to touch.

    The 3" difference in wire length is negligible.
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2017
    stish, gdmoore28, fishondwan and 4 others like this.
  5. gizzyman47

    gizzyman47 Super Member

    Messages:
    1,164
    Location:
    utah
    Get speakers out of corners (unless made to perform there). Also, move them out into the room some. Let them breath. If you move them out from the wall, keep the distance from the side walls a different distance than the wall behind the speakers.
     
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  6. tyeeslayer

    tyeeslayer Super Member

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    3,018
    Location:
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    Increase volume.
     
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  7. audiosignal

    audiosignal Member

    Messages:
    72
    Flipping the woofers 180 degrees to reverse sagging.
     
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  8. MonoMania

    MonoMania New Member

    Messages:
    25
    Location:
    Canada
    Never heard or thought of that... Makes sense though! How often do you do it? Yearly?
     
  9. audiosignal

    audiosignal Member

    Messages:
    72
    Yearly would be good, in theory. However, considering risk of stripping the mdf / wood, I'll just do once every 5-10yrs or when refurbishing.
     
  10. dcmfan

    dcmfan AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
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    Location:
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    Listen at night. After the rest of the family is in bed and the house is quiet.
     
  11. scoloheros

    scoloheros Active Member

    Messages:
    325
    It's not quite "0" cost, but all it took was some glue. I found a pair of speakers that sounded blown, there was a rattle at higher volume. It was only the baffle that had come unglued, some glue along the outer edge is all it took to fix it.
     
  12. toddalin

    toddalin Super Member

    Messages:
    1,734
    In some cases, remove the grill/cloth while listening. Not suggested with kids and/or pets.
     
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  13. toddalin

    toddalin Super Member

    Messages:
    1,734
    If you wear glasses, remove them while listening. They create a diffraction pattern about your head.

    Also if possible, listen in the dark or at least close your eyes. The removal of other "cues" will heighten your perception of hearing and expand the soundstage.
     
  14. darkblue94

    darkblue94 It wasn't me. Subscriber

    Messages:
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    Location:
    Beaverton, Oregon
    Clean your ear canals every once in a while.
     
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  15. Poultrygeist

    Poultrygeist Addicted Member

  16. Poultrygeist

    Poultrygeist Addicted Member

    Some drivers improve in SQ with a dust cap circumcision. This Eminence Beta 12LTA is a prime example.

    P5200004.JPG
     
  17. Poultrygeist

    Poultrygeist Addicted Member

    The famous "98 Cent Tweak" consists of placing polyfill behind a whizzer cone. After rolling it in your hands wrap it around the whizzer underside and it should stay in place. Cleans up upper midrange honk.
     
  18. GD70

    GD70 AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
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    Location:
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    If your cabs are a nice wood veneer, oil them once a year. Keeps the wood glowing!
     
  19. jberger

    jberger AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
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    Location:
    Long Beach, CA
    Turn all of the lights off and listen in complete darkness.
     
  20. jberger

    jberger AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,688
    Location:
    Long Beach, CA
    Hot water and alcohol in a WaterPik on low power setting (using a separate pick, obviously).
     
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