Really Red Oak X LS Encores with all the fixin's

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Captainhemo

Really Red Oak X LS Encores with all the fixin's
« on: 19 Jul 2016, 05:56 pm »
Built this pair of X LS Encores with kind of a dual purpose, 1 they are to be a gift for my nephew and his GF who both just graduated from university and are both music lovers, and 2,  we recently heard a pair of pretty pricey mini monitors in a local audio shop  that I felt compelled to shame with a pair of these so that's what  they'll do before  heading to their  new home :)

Started out as your typical  build, this time I  lined them with no rez before gluing onthe front baffles just to make things a bit easier. I also used a single biscuit  on each panel to  just aid in alignment while clamping  them up.  As you can see in the pic, instead of using the  .75" square cross brace, I  always use a piece of .75" round stock as I've got a bunch lying around, probably no difference but I like to eliminate the sharp edges if possible


We decided to go ahead and upgrade the networks.  P2P wired, Sonicaps bypssed with a  Jupiter Copper Foil on the high pass, bypassed with a .22uF Sonicap on the  low pass. A Clarity ESA cap was also used on the high pass cirucit.   Mils resistrors and  XO inductors completed the networks. I used a board slightly longer than the PCB , it let me space out the inductors a bit  more


I had  some rotary cut Red Oak leftover from a previous build  and decided to  use  that up , sorry, I didn't take  any pics during the actual process of veneering,  only my 2nd veneer project and pics were the last thing on my mind  .
Anyway, after wrapping them  in the veneer, I wanted to do something a bit different. After talking to my nephew and determining that  he and the Mrs  both liked red, I decided to make these  REALLY RED.
Picked up some dark red Aniline water based dye, mixed it up and  gave the cabinets a sponge bath. Somewhat tricky to try and keep the color uniform on both cabinets and in all areas, kind of a messy process too as the dye tends to get  EVERYWHERE.
 
After the dye, the cabinets  were kind of dull and had no "pop" so,  out came the Dark Walnut Danish oil,  I used  600 grit paper and  did  4, 1/2 hr soaks lightly sanding with the oil soaked paper and keeping the veneer wet for the duration of each session. Along the way, some problems arose, in a couple places around the woofer cutouts, the light sanding seemed to remove the dye and after it was removed, nothing would  take, seemd the more I tried  , the wore the issue got, I think I was actually into glue coming through from the back side, both speakers were  having the same issue right around the woofer cutouts  :scratch: Mouinted  the drivers  to see how bad things actually were
:cry:

Talked to a woodworker buddy  and he suggested I try using some lacquer based toner to blend the troubled areas into the grain...my artsy niece was the perfect person to tackle this, you'll see the results  in a sec.
After she did her thing, I  proceeded to  apply numerous  coats of wipe on satin poly. After the 4 th coat I started lightly sanding with 800 grit ontinuously doing so after each 2 coats.  As the poly leveled out, I kept moving to finer paper before finally finishing with 2000 grit.


So, in the end, they did come out pretty cool looking imho. If I were doing   the same  finish again, I'd  use more dye and have them end up a bit darker Got lucky with the repairs around the woofer cutouts, my niece did a great job of dealing with those.

Set these up last night to start getting some hours on them and man, they really sound great  :thumb:
Here a few more pics of the end results









jay

mlundy57

Re: Really Red Oak X LS Encores with all the fixin's
« Reply #1 on: 19 Jul 2016, 06:46 pm »
Jay,

Very nice. The came out beautiful.

I do something similar with the crossbrace. I use a slightly oversize rectangular piece and put round overs on all 4 long edges. Instead of round  they come out oval.

It's really amazing how good these speakers sound, especially with upgraded crossovers.

Mike

gregfisk

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Re: Really Red Oak X LS Encores with all the fixin's
« Reply #2 on: 19 Jul 2016, 06:56 pm »
Really nice Jay, glad you were able to fix the finish, I hate when that happens :duh:

jeffh

Re: Really Red Oak X LS Encores with all the fixin's
« Reply #3 on: 19 Jul 2016, 08:19 pm »
Very nice looking speakers and a great recovery on the areas where you sanded through the veneer.  Now, don't tell anybody and they will never know. :thumb: :thumb:

Guy 13

Re: Really Red Oak X LS Encores with all the fixin's
« Reply #4 on: 19 Jul 2016, 11:04 pm »
Nice job Jay.  :thumb: :thumb: :thumb:

Guy 13

Captainhemo

Re: Really Red Oak X LS Encores with all the fixin's
« Reply #5 on: 20 Jul 2016, 03:36 am »
Thanks guys , appreciate the comments  :thumb:
Mike,  I actually  considered dooing  just what you have done with the cross brace  on one of my  Encore builds before coming across the  round material which  simplified things considerably.  That round material actually came from some old chairs that were heading for the dump , glad I intercepted them  !

Jef, the wierd thing was, I didn't  go through the veneer, it was like the glue was coming up from the backside.   When I first started applying the finish, there  was no issue but as i  applied  usin ghe 600 grit paper, it just kept getting worse and worse, it was frustrating   as it  it occured and continued to get worse as I tried to deal with it . Glad my buddy recommended the toner as it ended up working  quite well, I was not into  ripping off all that veneer and starting over :nono:

Have had these playing all day, sitting here llistening to them  now is impressive They are very  detailed yet  extremely  easy to listen to, very , very mnusical  little speakers. I've built a few sets of the Encores in the past but have never taken them to this level, the crossover mods are well worth the  expense and effort

jay

corndog71

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Re: Really Red Oak X LS Encores with all the fixin's
« Reply #6 on: 20 Jul 2016, 03:43 am »
Beautiful job!  Did you notice any difference with the Jupiter bypasses?

Captainhemo

Re: Really Red Oak X LS Encores with all the fixin's
« Reply #7 on: 20 Jul 2016, 05:05 am »
Beautiful job!  Did you notice any difference with the Jupiter bypasses?

Thanks  .....
Well, I didn't do a  with/without Jupiter bypass cap but, compared to a stock X LS Encore,  wow.
I've also  yanked the  .1 Gen II bypass cap on the large bundle  onthe midrange  circuit on  my NX-Otticas and tried  them with botha  Dueland silver .1 and a Jupiter  Copper foil .1.  Spent  about 2 weekes with each...  the Jupiter stays

I'm actually  gong to build out anothe rset of these in a slightly  larger cabinet  and use a flared port.  I'm thinking of using the Jantzen  wax / copper foil inductors  and  instead of the  .22 Sonicap bypass cap on the  woofer cap,   I think I'll go with a .1 Jupiter Copper Foil.  I'd  love to just use  Jupiters for the main caps but man, the  cost.just  accumulates so fast. 

Parts Connexion  has their 20% off sale extened and you can  get the Jupoters  with that discount, really makes the smaller values  somewhat reasonable

jay


Skiman

Re: Really Red Oak X LS Encores with all the fixin's
« Reply #8 on: 20 Jul 2016, 05:11 am »
Seeing the picture of your XL-S Encores in front of your main setup reminded me of when I did a temporary test :




As I remarked at the time, I was shocked by how good the 'little' XL-S Encores sound. Mine have no-rez and Electra Tube connectors. Eventually, four of them will be hung from the ceiling to become the .4 of a Dolby Atmos 7.1.4 setup.

Danny Richie

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Re: Really Red Oak X LS Encores with all the fixin's
« Reply #9 on: 20 Jul 2016, 01:03 pm »
Nice job Jay. Those are really good looking.

Ron

Re: Really Red Oak X LS Encores with all the fixin's
« Reply #10 on: 20 Jul 2016, 06:46 pm »
  Your XL-S Encores turned out really nice Jay. They look great!  I'm sure they sound great too. 

Captainhemo

Re: Really Red Oak X LS Encores with all the fixin's
« Reply #11 on: 21 Sep 2016, 06:22 am »
Quick update, got an email from my nephew   this eve

"Attached is a pic of the speakers at my place. Teya and I listened to them for a few hours last night...they sound %ucking amazing."



 8)

gregfisk

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Re: Really Red Oak X LS Encores with all the fixin's
« Reply #12 on: 21 Sep 2016, 07:22 am »
It always feels good to do something for someone else and then have them truly appreciate what you did :thumb:

Someday my Daughter who also loves music (didn't have much choice in our house) will settle down and stop tromping all over the world. Then I can set her up with some good sounding gear.

Really nicely done as usual Jay, they are very lucky to have you and I'm sure they know that :D Thanks for the follow up, nice to see your hard work in it's new home.

Greg

mcgsxr

Re: Really Red Oak X LS Encores with all the fixin's
« Reply #13 on: 21 Sep 2016, 04:30 pm »
Sweet!  Sure wish I had an Uncle Captainhemo!

Decent start on speaker placement for the young couple too, and a huge head start on a lifetime of musical enjoyment.

Nicely done Jay!

Captainhemo

Re: Really Red Oak X LS Encores with all the fixin's
« Reply #14 on: 21 Sep 2016, 04:40 pm »
Thanks Greg
Yeah,   they  love to  get out there and check things out" as soon as they are old enough. I'm sure your daughter  is going to catch the  music love at some point, growing up with lots  of music she probably  already has it, it just hasn't  wurfaced yet .

Pointed Chris to the SMSL SA60  chip amp to get them started (thanks Larry), was like $100 Cdn and it really sounds pretty  darn good. Has a single rca input on rear and 3.5mm mini jack up front  so they can plug in a phone or  tablet <-- seems to be important these days


jay

gregfisk

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Re: Really Red Oak X LS Encores with all the fixin's
« Reply #15 on: 21 Sep 2016, 04:55 pm »
Thanks Greg
Yeah,   they  love to  get out there and check things out" as soon as they are old enough. I'm sure your daughter  is going to catch the  music love at some point, growing up with lots  of music she probably  already has it, it just hasn't  wurfaced yet .

Pointed Chris to the SMSL SA60  chip amp to get them started (thanks Larry), was like $100 Cdn and it really sounds pretty  darn good. Has a single rca input on rear and 3.5mm mini jack up front  so they can plug in a phone or  tablet <-- seems to be important these days


jay

Jay,

That's almost the same model I got my Daughter and then found an old pair of book shelves that sound pretty darn good. The problem is she can't lug them around so they are sitting in a box at my house. Those little amps sound pretty darn good for the the money outlay, bet the system sounds darn good.