GRS-3 vs Neo 3

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Hobbsmeerkat

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GRS-3 vs Neo 3
« on: 21 Sep 2020, 11:23 pm »
For those following along in the Covid updates thread, Parts Express announced replacement drivers Based on the Neo3/8/10 drivers.
Feel free to catch up here: https://www.audiocircle.com/index.php?topic=169075.40

I just got my driver in today and wanted to compare the new GRS (Great Replacement Speakers) "Neo3" clone side by side with my standard (Non-PDR) BG Neo3.



The first noticable difference is the use of bolts/nuts over rivets.
The position of the face also appears to be more simetrical top to bottom, where the Neo3 has its face shifted about 2mm higher.
The grill holes are also slightly smaller and are again, better centered within the protruding face, but its an issue that may arise more noticeably with waveguides or mounting plates.
The buffer layer between the magnets & diaphragm appears to be thinner on GRS model when compared to the Neo3.

GRS3:

Neo3:





First QC issue I've noticed is that the diagram isnt cleanly attached to or hidden by the frame. There are also a few spots where it sticks out, namely around the terminals, and mounting holes but it's a fairly minor nit-pick.

In the next few days I'll be doing some testing to see how they both perform as both dipole and using with my deep-cup mod.

I know HAL is going to also be doing some testing since they got one also, so hopefully we can use this thread to discuss these drivers more going forward!  :thumb:

Zitoun

Re: GRS-3 vs Neo 3
« Reply #1 on: 21 Sep 2020, 11:35 pm »
Great stuff, thanks for sharing

Hobbsmeerkat

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Re: GRS-3 vs Neo 3
« Reply #2 on: 22 Sep 2020, 12:45 am »
When I bought my GRS-3 I also got a handful of cheap clips, some low mass banana plugs to make the testing easier, and reduce the risk of damaging the diagram from direct soldering.

So here how I set up the wiring:

Zitoun

Re: GRS-3 vs Neo 3
« Reply #3 on: 22 Sep 2020, 02:22 am »
Do you plan to do the GRS Neo10?, I will be very very interested if that can play in the super 7 league !

Hobbsmeerkat

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Re: GRS-3 vs Neo 3
« Reply #4 on: 22 Sep 2020, 02:35 am »
Do you plan to do the GRS Neo10?, I will be very very interested if that can play in the super 7 league !

I'm still on the fence about it, cuz its pretty pricey at $130 and I'll need to make a baffle to hold it. Something similar to the Super Mini, but I wanna get thru testing the GRS-3 first.

Zitoun

Re: GRS-3 vs Neo 3
« Reply #5 on: 22 Sep 2020, 05:17 am »
OK I'll follow your thread then, let' see if the Neo3 is good first.

scararabe

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Re: GRS-3 vs Neo 3
« Reply #6 on: 22 Sep 2020, 10:42 am »
I look forward to reading your conclusions about differences in listening and measures of these two models !

Creative cut designs

Re: GRS-3 vs Neo 3
« Reply #7 on: 22 Sep 2020, 09:39 pm »
Are these for that new speaker design you drew up?

Hobbsmeerkat

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Re: GRS-3 vs Neo 3
« Reply #8 on: 22 Sep 2020, 09:55 pm »
Nah, mostly just to see how they stack up to the official Neo 3.
Tho I don't have a PDR model to do a direct comparison, since mine is the original 10-magnet model. I believe HAL says his Neo3 is a PDR, so hopefully he can get a more direct comparison. But i will be doing the yarn mod, to get mine as close as possible.

Plus they're a relatively cheap option right now at 1/4 the price for a new item. Tho their regular price is $99 at 3/4 the cost of a Neo3. Might as well have some fun with them & see how well they hold up.

emailtim

Re: GRS-3 vs Neo 3
« Reply #9 on: 22 Sep 2020, 09:59 pm »
Will you be taking any near-field measurements with REW ?  If you do, please post the .MDAT files.

TIA

Hobbsmeerkat

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Re: GRS-3 vs Neo 3
« Reply #10 on: 22 Sep 2020, 10:15 pm »
I certainly can!  :thumb:

Hobbsmeerkat

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Re: GRS-3 vs Neo 3
« Reply #11 on: 23 Sep 2020, 01:10 am »
Small update:
I can verify that my GRS-3 works, & there is definitely a difference in tone between them, just based on just messing around with both drivers.
I'm kinda surprised how different they both sound in my test baffle and with/without my cup mod. I can't quite describe the differences yet but you can definitely tell that the Neo3 is more sensitive and more "hollow" or "shouty"? The GRS-3 being a PDR style has better off-angle tone. (Danny's yarn mod not yet installed)

With the deep cup used on both models, there's better & fuller mids, but both definitely lack any bass, as expected.

The GRS-3 also has a wider face & doesn't fit into the stock BG circular mounting plate.

Zitoun

Re: GRS-3 vs Neo 3
« Reply #12 on: 23 Sep 2020, 03:18 am »
Do you think they have different qualities or is there a clear winner already ?
 :popcorn:

Jon L

Re: GRS-3 vs Neo 3
« Reply #13 on: 23 Sep 2020, 03:38 am »

With the deep cup used on both models, there's better & fuller mids, but both definitely lack any bass, as expected.


That's promising to hear.  The world definitely could use a worthy replacement for those Neo planar drivers.
I am especially interested in the new GRS "Slim" 8 inch planar drivers which are much cheaper than the 10".  Long and narrow, seems perfect for an easy open-baffle array :thumb:


GRSslim8 by drjlo2, on Flickr

Hobbsmeerkat

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Re: GRS-3 vs Neo 3
« Reply #14 on: 23 Sep 2020, 04:16 am »
My biggest issue, as Danny pointed out, with the "Slim-8" is that it lacks the fabric damper layer that sits between the diaphragm and the magnets. So it's likely going to have ringing issues.
You'll likely be better off with the standard GRS-8/Neo8 clone, even if its response curve isn't as good, and moving to the GRS-3 for 7K Hz & up.

That said, it might make for an interesting DIY portable bluetooth bsetup, with a small down-firing woofer for everything below 600hz...

Tho I'm still confused why the felt stuffing only exists on the back side and not the front on either 8" driver... (I checked and the Neo8 PDR has felt on both the front and back sides)
:scratch:

emailtim

Re: GRS-3 vs Neo 3
« Reply #15 on: 23 Sep 2020, 04:34 am »
I am interested in the NEO8S.  Don't know if this version is the NEO8 or NEO8S clone, but it does appear to go lower than the slim version.


Zitoun

Re: GRS-3 vs Neo 3
« Reply #16 on: 23 Sep 2020, 04:45 am »
Let us know the result of the test,
I'd like to see what can be done with the NEO10 clone, if that can be promising to recreate a S7 with a new crossover, I am IN. 8)

Hobbsmeerkat

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Re: GRS-3 vs Neo 3
« Reply #17 on: 23 Sep 2020, 02:26 pm »
I am interested in the NEO8S.  Don't know if this version is the NEO8 or NEO8S clone, but it does appear to go lower than the slim version.

I'm not 100% sure, but it looks like a weird hybrid of the Neo8S & PDR models. Its has the full 30 drivers like the 8S, but has the felt strips stuffed in the outer row like the Neo8 PDR, tho only in the rear..
You could stuff some thick yarn in the outer, front rows & probably make for a better hybrid.

That said, I cant go broke buying & testing every driver tho to test if it's a viable option.. :P
But if y'all want to help out or send me one for testing that's something we can talk about going forward.

Hobbsmeerkat

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Re: GRS-3 vs Neo 3
« Reply #18 on: 23 Sep 2020, 06:36 pm »
Okay! Testing done!

(Technically not done at 1W, but was done at 1M from baffle to mic)
I ran 4 sweeps in total: 2 as OB, 2 with the back cup mod.
Sweeps were done, on axis, 500-20,000 Hz using REW with 1/24 smoothing.

Here's the test baffle/waveguide, with a dynamat product on the back to reduce resonance of the plastic.




Deep cup results:

Red: Stock Neo3     Orange: GRS-3

OB results:

Green: Stock Neo3       Blue: GRS-3

I'm honestly impressed, they both measure well. And quiet consistently to one another, esp in their OB/dipole config!

Tho I would say that the Neo3 does fare better in the deep cup tests, but for OB the GRS-3 doesn't appear to be a bad option, and can easily get you down to 900HZ

In the sweep, there are other minor sweeps near the end, where I would say that the Neo3 does sound clearer imo, but the difference is pretty minor, and for the price is a pretty nice way to go.

emailtim

Re: GRS-3 vs Neo 3
« Reply #19 on: 23 Sep 2020, 07:13 pm »
How do the waterfall decays compare ?  Does the GRS have more ringing ?