Omega vs DIY

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jeff sackett

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Omega vs DIY
« on: 1 Jul 2021, 02:59 pm »
Hi all. New guy here with some questions. I have only heard two full range speakers so experience is quite limited.
        One was an 8 inch Fostex in a floor standing cabinet. Sounded awful. They did nothing well, extremely bright, mids were terrible and nearly no bass at all. In all fairness to Fostex, they only had about 20 minutes on them when i heard them.
        The other was a Tang Band 1808 in an open baffle with a sub. They sounded very nice and is the main reason for my interest in single driver speakers.
        So, does anyone here have experience with both the Omegas and home built?? Mainly interested in the Jr8 xrs as i prefer floor standing boxes and would like to run without subs. Since my woodworking skills are nonexistent, by the time I buy some good drivers and have the boxes built price wise probably pretty much a wash. The Jr8s are about all I'm willing to spend on something i haven't heard.
         Room is about 12 by 15 feet. Distance from speakers will be around 8 feet. I am aware of the pros and cons of single drivers. I listen to female vocals, classic arias especially Maria Callas, Jazz singers, Jazz, classic rock. And, these will not be my only speakers so can unplug and plug in a few seconds.
          Anyway, would really appreciate any input on the subject. Price and sound quality wise how would the Omegas stack up against a good diy design??
          Thanks for reading, Regards, Jeff

peckjed

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Re: Omega vs DIY
« Reply #1 on: 2 Jul 2021, 03:56 pm »
I cant speak for the DIY route, but having owned and heard several sets of Omegas - I personally feel the JR8's are the best all round speaker Louis offers and the ones I regret selling. I will likely buy another set one of these days as a second setup with my Audio Notes. Ive also heard the Omega 3" offerings and were too bright for my taste and would certainly require a sub to handle a lot of the heavy listening and the alnico SAM HOs were almost too laid back for my taste. You wont be disappointed with the JR8s.

jmolsberg

Re: Omega vs DIY
« Reply #2 on: 2 Jul 2021, 04:08 pm »
certainly call louis. he may recommend the alnico with your musical taste.
omega are fine speakers, no matter which flavor!

seikosha

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Re: Omega vs DIY
« Reply #3 on: 2 Jul 2021, 05:11 pm »
I’ve built a couple of simple Fostex based speakers and had some Super Pensils with the Mark Audio Alpair 10P.  In all cases, I preferred the Omegas.

jeff sackett

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Re: Omega vs DIY
« Reply #4 on: 3 Jul 2021, 02:30 pm »
Thanks all for the input. I think I will give Louis a shout and see what he has to say.

Seikosha.....Interesting you found the Omega's preferable to the Alpairs. Personally never heard any of their drivers, but they are highly regarded by many in the diy crowd. What did you feel lacking about them compared to the JR8s??   Would seriously appreciate your opinions
                 Thanks again. Regards, Jeff

seikosha

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Re: Omega vs DIY
« Reply #5 on: 3 Jul 2021, 03:06 pm »
Thanks all for the input. I think I will give Louis a shout and see what he has to say.

Seikosha.....Interesting you found the Omega's preferable to the Alpairs. Personally never heard any of their drivers, but they are highly regarded by many in the diy crowd. What did you feel lacking about them compared to the JR8s??   Would seriously appreciate your opinions
                 Thanks again. Regards, Jeff

Yeah I was really expecting to like the Alpairs because like you, I’d read a lot of positive things about them.  Compared to the Omegas, the Alpairs were just not as dynamic and composed as the Omegas.  They also were a little less efficient.  They probably measured better than my Omegas, but they lacked a lot of the excitement and immediacy that I associate with good single driver designs. Hard to explain, but they were just too polite if that makes sense.

I’ve got another pair of Mark Audio drivers that were in short production a number of years ago, (el70’s) and they are really nice.  It’s a smaller driver like the rs5, and has a gorgeous midrange and really nice upper bass. 

jeff sackett

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Re: Omega vs DIY
« Reply #6 on: 5 Jul 2021, 12:48 pm »
Thanks Seikosha. Really appreciate your input. Alpair was not on my short list for a couple of reasons. One is the breakin time needed. I'm 74 and would like to still be on the sunny side of the dirt when they were settled in. The other is they don't offer an 8 inch driver, which is pretty much my minimum size preference. That said, I much appreciate your opinion as someone who has heard both systems. I was going to go with Tang Band or possibly the new Jordans. Think I will give Louis a call later in the week and at least have a chat with him. Thanks again Seikosha. Regards, Jeff

Dako

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Re: Omega vs DIY
« Reply #7 on: 6 Jul 2021, 02:21 am »
Jeff,
   You should definitely reach out to Louis. He knows his products and knows what will work. He is super busy but always has time to talk when needed. I just got a pair of Super 8 XRS speakers back in February and it has been heaven ever since. I was told 100-200 hours of break in but mine came in nicely around the 80 hour mark. I just added the matching sub and it took the listening to another level. Still playing around with it. If you decide on Omega, I’d be surprised if you didn’t enjoy them. On another note, Louis’s woodworking skills are masterful. You will have speakers that look as great as they sound. My speaker journey has ended with my Omegas.

Dave

planet10

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Re: Omega vs DIY
« Reply #8 on: 6 Jul 2021, 07:13 pm »
Let me first say i have not heard any Omegas. I’d like to.

I do have a lot of experience with FR diy thou. A LOT.

The stock Fostex you usually see (FExx6) are something that is sort of a taste thing. They have many issues, 2 being that thet really want to be in a proper horn (the factory recommended ones do not qualify, and they want ot be driven by a high Rout amplifier (tyically SE tube amps, but that scene is changing). Their rough edges can to a great extent with modifications. 2 specific ones are fairly simple, a 3rd requires you to get over fear of taking a scalpel to the dustcap. More serious modifications take some serious practise (something i no longer do but am very happy to help others with) This could be the Fostex you heard, but tweaked up to overcome most of their major issues. Note that it is not even worth considering listening to any Fostex without at least 100 Hhrs on them (the case for many FRs who’s suspension has a much trickier job to do.



The TB W8-1808 is a quite popular driver (not quite as popular as the sister W8-1772). AFAIC overpriced and fairly coloured.



The Mark Audio Alpair 10p is very popular, hard to get, one of my favourites, but also has a quite specific voicing, which includes a warm inviting midrange and a “vintage” top end. A favourite of many with SETs. The sister, metal cone, Alpair 10.3 is probably the more accurate, with a more ectanded top (but sometimes the small amount of very HF ringing may find some lookign for a filter (or A10p).






Both are getting hard to find, the newer mono suspension Alpair 11ms has an edge mid/top, bass largely determined by box.

The Alpairs are my personal favourite but given the large number of compromises that any loudspeaker has, and how much what is in front of it can affect performance, any speaker, FR or not is a very personal choice.

DIY offers a huge range of possibilities that no built “store-bought” box can offer. It also requires more knowledge (or luck) and access to tools to build. Once that last is dealt with a competitive sounding diy box for a fraction of what you would pay even direct. Whether it is as pretty is up to your skill.

DIY also allows you to specifically tailor the end result towards your preferred set of compromises and to best match your room.

I do have a buddy who is workign thru my speaker collection in search of a box that statisfies him. He has been thru at least one set of Omegas, and currently has Alpair 7.3eN in Frugel-Horn Mk3.



It is hard to hear an example of FR diy boxes so the journey often involves multiple builds.

Lots more in my head, i am happy to answer questions.

dave

jeff sackett

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Re: Omega vs DIY
« Reply #9 on: 7 Jul 2021, 01:09 pm »
Thanks for the input Dako. Appreciate the input. Will definitely be giving Louis a call later in the week.

          Planet10, Thanks for the info Dave. Appreciate it. As I said in my initial post the Fostex speakers I heard were only about 20 minutes old and in some kind of floor standing cab. Don't know if they were horns or not, but to me they sounded terrible. I'm sure it was the speakers as they were being driven by some very nice 300b monoblocks designed and built by Jack Elliono of Electraprint audio. They were set up in Jack's listening room at his house. We both live in Las Vegas and he lives  maybe 4 miles from me. Always a cool place to visit as he always has something new he's playing with. Wish my wallet was fat enough to take those amps off his hands.

           I am sure the Alpairs are good drivers. My main concern was breakin time of 800 hours. Apparently you can't even drive them loud enough to listen to for the first 200. That and 8" is about  the smallest drivers I'm interested in. On top of that I would have to have the boxes built. I don't have the skills or tools to work with wood, hence my interest in the Omega line. Thanks for your time Dave, have read a lot of your opinions on another site and always found them helpful.

            Thanks again to all who have taken the time to respond to my post. Best regards, Jeff

RDavidson

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Re: Omega vs DIY
« Reply #10 on: 7 Jul 2021, 02:13 pm »
I agree with the earlier statement to talk to Louis at Omega. All his speakers have been refined and perfected over many many years. Something to note is that he has some customization options as well, which include internal wiring and possibly binding posts. Get ZenWave internal wiring (perhaps silver or copper ribbon). That'd be killer.

planet10

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Re: Omega vs DIY
« Reply #11 on: 7 Jul 2021, 03:51 pm »
My main concern was breakin time of 800 hours.

Only 2 Alpairs that really don’t get to their best until that kind of time, the A10.3 and the A7p. Most of the others a 100 Hrs is recommended, the new monoSuspension, not having a spider to breal in, puportedly take only 10, and that jives with my experience, althou i usually put 3200-300 hrs low level on any of them before i even measure them.

Quote
Apparently you can't even drive them loud enough to listen to for the first 200.

the number is 100. But that also applies to other drivrs (most of them actually), but FRs show the mist as they have the hardest job to do. I have a bunch of excess Alpairs that already have their initial breakin and are best value to Canadians since they are already across the border.

Quote
That and 8" is about  the smallest drivers I'm interested in.

I have run across few 8s i could live with. SEAS FA22 and Visaton B200. Both need phase plugs, the B200 has a real issue without. It also really wants an OB, IB, or really big box SEAS fits nicely into a 50-70 litre sealed box. The best drivers are smaller. In the right box they can go as low, but typically do better midrange & top. Midrange is where the magic is. If you need more bass than that can provide (many of those larger FR don’t go that low) i would suggest a WAW.

Bob Berner (Big Wood Studios) in PA is doing flatpaks for a range of boxes. Pensils, FHs, more.

dave

Folsom

Re: Omega vs DIY
« Reply #12 on: 7 Jul 2021, 07:12 pm »
I've heard an Omega speaker, and I've heard Mark Audio speaker.

Omega is much better IMO.

planet10

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Re: Omega vs DIY
« Reply #13 on: 7 Jul 2021, 09:29 pm »
We know Louis builds to a certain standard (and style). DIY builds have much, much more variation given the huge range of drivers & boxes.

Without knowing exactly which Mark Audio in what box (support kit counts too) your statement means nothing. There are Mark Audio drivers i don’t particualrily like in any box. Which Omega would be good too… Louis has made many.

dave

Folsom

Re: Omega vs DIY
« Reply #14 on: 13 Jul 2021, 12:02 am »
The Mark Audio’s were the natural one. They sound like their FR graph and every other fullrange in that its choppy and requires a very forgiving amplifier. The Omegas pretty much just sounded nice, but needing some low end support/baffle step.

planet10

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Re: Omega vs DIY
« Reply #15 on: 13 Jul 2021, 12:52 am »
Quote
the natural one

That doesn’t give us much more information.

What do you mean by natural? Their natural cone material is an Al alloy, there are a few paper coned ones as well. And quite the range of performance across the line.

dave

Folsom

Re: Omega vs DIY
« Reply #16 on: 13 Jul 2021, 09:15 pm »
https://www.markaudio.com/online_shop/ch/chp-70-generation-2/

Probably pointless to post this...

You can argue all you want for the MA, I think they're a very specific fit with electronics and everything.

planet10

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Re: Omega vs DIY
« Reply #17 on: 13 Jul 2021, 10:11 pm »
The CHP-70.2 is one of the lower rung drivers. In an attempt to do what customers wanted, the top 2 octaves got shelved down 10 dB. This makes for little top end. The Alpai r6.2p and the Alpair 10p show how vintage top end should be done. Wjat it does do it does pretty well with a very nice midrange and OK to "that is coming out of a 4 inch?” bass extention depending on the enclosure.



I fully expect almost any modern Omega to outperform this driver overall. It is best considered a midBass and used to make a 2-way.

The Earlier generation (EL70 in North America) and the CHP-70 (Europe and Japan) had top end and huge bass potential. Sadly became th eone you heard. Still not such that it matches modern Omega, there were lowish end drivers (althou superb for the money). I would say that the drivers worth considering when comparing to the Omegas would Alpair 10.3, A10p, A12p, A11ms. Each has its strengths. It woud be an interesting shootout.

dave

Folsom

Re: Omega vs DIY
« Reply #18 on: 13 Jul 2021, 10:28 pm »
Right but even in the ranges they play, the Omegas as so much more peaceful and pleasant than the choppiness of MA.

planet10

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Re: Omega vs DIY
« Reply #19 on: 13 Jul 2021, 11:06 pm »
Could well be the case. This is not the kind of MA driver we are talking about and as such is an irrelevant comparison.

Just like a modern Omega would smoke the early one smade with FE127e. The latter gets smoked, but is still enjoyable.

dave