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Bass Cab design software (2 or 3 way)?

Discussion in 'Amps [BG]' started by hobbes1, Sep 18, 2013.


  1. hobbes1

    hobbes1

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2006
    Hi. I've been reading the FAQ's here and have explored WinISD and some other stuff (like fdeck's program), etc. I'm not really seeing what I am looking for...or maybe just not realizing what I have is right in front of me....

    I want software (free or paid..but not horribly expensive) that would allow me to model the response of a given bass cab construction with various sizes of speakers and crossovers points. So, for example, if I wanted to see what a given 15" with a given
    6" mid would provide and then experiment with passive crossover points, I could do it all in one software program.

    Is there a program like this?
    Thanks for any helpful guidance on this. Yes I could buy a variety of commercial cabs or I could look at other projects posted here..I don't want to do that at present.

    I have seen the fEarful type posts here and I'm aware of the builders and the people selling kits, etc. I know about Bill F. stuff and I've read other DIY posts too. I am not interested in those projects at this time.
     
  2. Arjank

    Arjank

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2007
    Location:
    Above Amsterdam
    Boxsim
     
  3. oerk

    oerk

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2009
    Location:
    Bavaria
    +1

    Boxsim can do what you want, for Visaton drivers.

    For drivers from other manufacturers, you need to have impedance curves, frequency response curves etc. in text files ready to import. Almost no manufacturer publishes these.

    I prefer the classic method for crossover development: the finished cab, measuring microphone, measuring software.
     
  4. hobbes1

    hobbes1

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2006
    Thanks for the info.

    So there is apparently no software out there that will model, say a three way cab? I'm curious as to how manufacturers and DIY people have come up with their designs. Surely they haven't build tons of cabs, measured them with external mics/software and then scrapped the ones that didn't sound like they wanted. That seems horribly inefficient.

    Basically, what I'm looking for is a WinISD type program that will allow me to input specs for different size speakers into one box as opposed to two 10" or two 15" speakers....
     
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  6. Arjank

    Arjank

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2007
    Location:
    Above Amsterdam
    Thre is a lot one can do with boxsim is you use e.g. spl-trace and modify one of the Visaton drivers that comes closest to the one you want to simulate. I do this before I start building and measuring my projects.
    It'll definitely work for bass cabinets that don't need have that ruler-flat response hifi loudspeakers need to have.
     
  7. hobbes1

    hobbes1

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2006
    cool. thanks! i will give this a shot later when i'm home

    if anyone else knows of alternate programs, please let me know.
     
  8. Passinwind

    Passinwind Charlie Escher Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2003
    Location:
    Columbia River Gorge, WA.
    Yep, that is the only way to go IMO. Build a trial box from general case models, measure everything, make a better model, build another box.

    Passive Speaker Designer was starting to actually work the last time I tried it, a few months ago. Once it does work well it will no longer be free though.

    Boxsim is mature software and definitely works as long as you have real world FRC and impedance files.

    Speaker Workshop worked pretty well for me too, and does the measurements for you, but is a real pain to learn and is completely orphaned at this point.
     
  9. hobbes1

    hobbes1

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2006
    thanks. will check out PSD and Boxsim......
     
  10. Vince Klortho

    Vince Klortho

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2013
    Location:
    Squierville, California
    If you need the Thiele-Small parameters check out http://www.usspeaker.com/. They have them for practically every speaker they sell and that is a fairly large number. If you are going to use JBL speakers the parameters are available on their site.
     
  11. hobbes1

    hobbes1

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2006
    thanks Vince, will keep that in mind
     
  12. oerk

    oerk

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2009
    Location:
    Bavaria
    Well, you can model the low frequency response pretty accurately in WinISD. With a bit of experience, you can design a good baffle layout. If you have a mid driver chamber, you can change the size later with more or less damping material.

    So you _can_ get the box right the first time. The only thing that's left is the crossover design.

    You just have to be sure you have chosen the right drivers ;)
     
  13. Passinwind

    Passinwind Charlie Escher Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2003
    Location:
    Columbia River Gorge, WA.
    That's exactly how every conscientious manufacturer or DIY'er I know of does it.
     
  14. DukeLeJeune

    DukeLeJeune rational romantic mystic cynical idealist Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2008
    Location:
    Preston, Idaho
    Disclosures:
    Owner & designer, AudioKinesis; Auth. mfg, Big E (Home Audio only)
    A few months ago I threw away around forty different enclosures that had accumulated in my garage, basement, and workshop over the past few years, from various R&D projects (most were failures... but then hopefully we learn more from our failures than from our successes). I still have on hand a dozen or so that have been relegated to "test box" status for making measurements.

    Enclosure modelling software is a great help, but at some point you gotta build the prototype and try it out.

    I don't know of any software that can do a decent job of modelling a crossover without actual frequency response and impedance measurements as a starting point.
     
  15. hobbes1

    hobbes1

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2006
    wow. well, if nothing else, i have certainly learned something about cab building I never realized (how many builds get done/discarded)! I always thought companies did most of the grunt work in a software arena and then were able to make a good build from that.
    thanks for educating me.
     
  16. Arjank

    Arjank

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2007
    Location:
    Above Amsterdam
    Yup, you need some frequency and impedance plots. Though Boxsim can do some rather good predictions up to say 800hz without a frequency plot. Just use one of the drivers from the database that looks most like the driver you want to simulate, change it's TSP's and tell the program to not use the frequency plot. You can also choose to change the individual frequency measurement values in Boxsim, takes some work but can be helpfull.
     
  17. Foz

    Foz

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2008
    Location:
    Jax FL USA
  18. hobbes1

    hobbes1

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2006
    great info. thanks!!
     
  19. canadian*eh

    canadian*eh

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2006
    Location:
    Edmonton,Alberta,Canada
    Disclosures:
    Uncompensated endorsing user: fEARful
    This is the reason when asking about building a DIY cab a lot of guys will recommend fEARful or BFM. It's not that they don't think you can build your own cab and have it work. Cause I am sure you can......... But if you want it to work to the best of its ability it is going to take ALOT of trial and error. Guys like Greenboy, Bill, duke and others have put 100's of hours working these cabs out to be the best they can be!! I know they may not be for everyone but you can sure learn a lot from what these guys have done!! In the end most people suggest these cabs to save you the head ache and $$$ wasted making something that might not work how you thought it would. All the best bad good luck :) cheers mate~ Elliot
     
  20. DukeLeJeune

    DukeLeJeune rational romantic mystic cynical idealist Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2008
    Location:
    Preston, Idaho
    Disclosures:
    Owner & designer, AudioKinesis; Auth. mfg, Big E (Home Audio only)
    My post was probably a bit misleading. Software does a good job of predicting the performance of sealed and vented bass systems. One of the things it can't predict is, how small you can shrink the box and subjectively still "get away with it". Or what this particular woofer + unorthodox midrange will sound like together.

    For example, I built three different cabs that combined a guitar speaker with a large woofer, and eventually fiigured out the hard way that there's an inherent problem with that approach. I never claimed to be a fast learner!
     
  21. Arjank

    Arjank

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2007
    Location:
    Above Amsterdam
    Sounds like fun this "unorthodox"midrange.
    A guitar speaker as "mid" is something you can't predict how it sounds with simulations. Even a normal frequency response measurement will give you a wrong idea how such a thing sounds. In this case the only thing is experiment&tweak til it sounds great to your ears.
     

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