Wilmslow-audio

Discussion in 'DIY Discussion' started by DrMartin, Mar 15, 2010.

  1. DrMartin

    DrMartin

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    Has anybody here had any experience of this company?

    I'm in the market for some new speakers to replace my mission 753 freedoms and I'm going around in circles to be honest.

    I want a bit a bit more bass and bit less hardening of the sound at higher SPLs.

    I've got a budget of around £3,000 but I wouldn't mind trying one of the more expesive Wilmslow kits if somebody else here thinks it might be worthwhile?

    I don't really have the opportunity to audition speakers. There are no hifi dealers on the Isle of Wight and I don't see the point of listening to speakers anywhere other than my own room and I doubt very much if any dealer on the mainland would be prepared to bring some speakers over to me on the off-chance that I might like them.
     
    DrMartin, Mar 15, 2010
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  2. DrMartin

    Colin2040

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    I can only speak from experience going back 10 years.I bought at that time two kits with cabinets and both were excellent.In fact my brother still uses one of the sets and they still sound good.Service was good as was advice when I had any questions. You just need to be aware that you need some skills and if a professional finish is required either spend a lot of time achieving it or get it done for you.
     
    Colin2040, Mar 16, 2010
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  3. DrMartin

    Colin2040

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    Sorry just saw your budget . I am not sure I would spend that amount on a kit because no matter how good it is I think there is always an issue of moving them on when you want to upgrade.This is only my opinion but I think you have to bear this in mind.£3k will buy you some pretty super speakers new or second hand with a fair chance of recouping a bit of the cash.

    It would probably be worwhile organising a day at some dealer and listen to as many speakers as you can and then make a choice even if the trip costs a few bob.
     
    Colin2040, Mar 16, 2010
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  4. DrMartin

    DrMartin

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    Thanks Colin. I would only be spending around half of that on one of their best kits. I was just curious as to whether they were a reasonably decent company to deal with and you've answered that.

    The main reason I'm looking at those kits is that even with £3k to spend on ready-made preakers it seems almost impossible to find anything that isn't a tall, slim floor-stander with 6" woofers. I'm sure some of the designs might sound fine but I'm starting to form the opinion that for 'proper' bass you need a much bigger cone nearer 12" in diameter (providing, of course you have sufficient amplification to control it properly).

    I'd quite enjoy a day out at a good dealer's listening to some good speakers but unltimately I'd only be able to compare them with each other and I'd have no idea how they would behave in my listening area which is a challenging space to say the least.

    For example, in contrast to a lot of situations I read about I actually rely on boundary effect to get any bass at all because the 'room' has a stair-well in it, so cannot be pressurised and also a very large skylight at one end. So basically I've got a huge hole in the floor and another one in the ceiling. This has the effect of sucking all the bass out of the room except for one very small sweetspot - but that requires the speakers to be very close to a rear wall (and that's got two big windows in it) Even then, if you walk under the skylight (which is 2 feet behind the listening position) the bass completely dissappears.

    It hasn't been an easy journey so far ...
     
    DrMartin, Mar 16, 2010
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  5. DrMartin

    Tackleberry Tackleberry

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    I can vouch for Wilmslow, ask away....
     
    Tackleberry, Mar 16, 2010
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  6. DrMartin

    Colin2040

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    Well at the time I dealt with them I have to say they were good to deal with. I bought a kit that was around £450 I think and it was way better than the speakers I had then which were 4 times that price and as I said they are still resident in my brothers system. Its funny how opinions differ, I rarely find that bigger drivers give me a bass that I prefer and almost always have speakers with 150mm or 200mm drivers at most.I tend to find that I like narrow fronted speakers .I alwyas feel the bass is more accurate and better defined but I guess its just different strokes.
     
    Colin2040, Mar 16, 2010
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  7. DrMartin

    Colin2040

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    Just another thought my listening room is or has some unusual dimensions and the dealer I had ran one of those soft ware packages on it to help define best position. At the time they said that it is a good indicator I would have to tweak the speakers around that location provided.What I was thinking is using the software with the room information to try and work backwards ie define best style of speaker and then narrow it down from there. Possibly flawed logic? The info they provided has helped considerably and my speakers are probably 100mm from the locations identified
     
    Colin2040, Mar 16, 2010
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  8. DrMartin

    bottleneck talks a load of rubbish

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    Hi

    For a big, room filling sound (DIY kit).. consider

    IPL STL5 http://www.iplacoustics.co.uk/S5 Kevlar Ribbon.htm

    From Wilmslow, their best IMO is the prestige -
    have a look at that. The K100 are brand new, and look very similar to the prestige. I'd happily go for a pair of those.

    Consider also (best idea IMO!) buying a pair of Tannoy dual concentric 15" cones and getting some GRF cabs made from the chap on here.

    A pair of repro GRF's will fetch 2.5-3k used, so its not necessarily true that DIY does not recoup its costs.

    Cheers
     
    bottleneck, Mar 17, 2010
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  9. DrMartin

    Tackleberry Tackleberry

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    I have twin w22 seas in the lower box and the atc mid and scanspeak in the top box, can generate amazing bass, but as with your dilema, i have a stairwell from top to bottom of the house.
     
    Tackleberry, Mar 17, 2010
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  10. DrMartin

    DrMartin

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    Lots of useful input there, thanks guys. I really do quite fancy going down the DIY route.

    It was the K100 or Prestige at Wilmslow that I was considering actually. They seem farily substantial in terms of spec but I appreciate that so much depends on the structural quality of the finished cabs.

    Tackleberry, I liked the look of your speakers when you posted the pic of them in the "show us your kit" thread. I would definitely think it worthwhile separating / isolating the bass unit(s) from the mid and hf in the manner you have adopted.

    I was having a good look at that Dutch site Tenson posted yesterday. The guy there has come up with some really nice ideas.

    Yes, the stairwell, in my case attractive enough but seriously annoying from a listening room perspctive. I've been in this place for ten years and I still haven't come up with a satisfactory arrangement - every permutation is a compromise.
     
    DrMartin, Mar 17, 2010
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  11. DrMartin

    speedy.steve

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    for that you could get a pair of fully re-conditioned 15" drivers from Lockwoods and a pair of GRF's built - GRF's etc were widely considered at last years Wammers show as one of the best sounding set ups there...
    Room allowing...

    I use Wilmslow for Grille fixing kits and speaker cloth. Always very good service.
     
    speedy.steve, Mar 18, 2010
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  12. DrMartin

    Hamilton

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    If you're thinking about spending that amount on DIY you should at least consider these: http://www.linkwitzlab.com/orion_challenge.htm
    Since I finished mine I've pretty much lost interest in other speakers. They really do everything right to my ears - the bass is spectacularly real and I think the dipole thing might mean they're less sensitive to room oddities.

    When I was getting the stuff together for mine a couple of years back Wilmslow offered me a pretty good deal on the drivers as a package (though at the time the dollar exchange rate meant I could do better).

    There are some pics of mine in various stages of build here: http://s305.photobucket.com/albums/nn230/GordonJ_photos/Orion Build/
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 19, 2010
    Hamilton, Mar 19, 2010
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  13. DrMartin

    sometimesuk

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    DrMartin, Like you I have always fancied building my own speakers, but have been put off because I dont have the spare money to loose, if I designed and built a pair, only to find out I dont like the sound. If I was going to make my own speakers, I would go for it 100% using the best drivers and crossovers etc.

    I also agree with the comment on secondhand value being very low. Personally, if it wouldnt take me years to save up £2000 or so, I would just go for it to satisfy my curiousity. One thing with Wilmslow is that you can visit the shop and hear their kits before you buy, though I have heard a few comments about thier front end letting the system down.

    I also 100% completely agree with your comment that speakers today. Many people find speakers today, just all about the mids and high and that manufactures have forgoten about the bass. The problem with using 6" drive units it that they artifically produce the bass, through the design of the cross over and cabinet.

    I was brought up on my dads Leaks 2075's with 15" bass units. What many people falsly believe is that larger drive units will give them too much bass / boom. With large drive units, this actually isnt as much a problem as what you would expect. Read reviews of speakers like PMC's MB2 XBDi's, with its two 12" drive units, or JBL Everest DD66000, with its two 15" bass units per speaker! and any other large speaker you can think of, and although they would say they measured too much bass, they would say its hardly was even noticed / became a problem.

    Thats because a large drive unit, is excerting less than a smaller drive unit, and produces so much more quality / natural bass at all sound levels. The small driver just doesnt compare.

    Its isnt all bad news though, if you want a natural / decent sound look for larger speakers from:

    PMC - worth a listen. on thier lower end models I find the sound a bit too thick.

    Spendor - ST reference speaker is very good £5k ish though, also like, but havent hear their Classic series SP100R's massive "standmounts".

    Kef - Kef high end models are my favourite and is what I would get if I had £12k ish, worth looking for S/H old top end models, as this is where I would put my money.
     
    sometimesuk, Mar 19, 2010
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  14. DrMartin

    DrMartin

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    It did take me years lol

    I've just reached a point in my life where I've decided to stop worrying about an uncertain future and just be good to myself.


    Lots of food for thought here everyone. thanks for all the input. Keep it coming. So many different points of view to consider but I'm definitely erring on the side of big bass units - whichever way I go.

    I didn't realise that I could visit Wilmslow - I might well organise that.
     
    DrMartin, Mar 20, 2010
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  15. DrMartin

    beeroclock

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    might help if you tell us what equipment you will use as a front end to your system.

    cheers philip
     
    beeroclock, Mar 20, 2010
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  16. DrMartin

    Jimbo

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    I didn't realise that I could visit Wilmslow - I might well organise that.[/QUOTE]

    Dont go on a weekend, they are not open. Well that was the case a few years back.
     
    Jimbo, Mar 21, 2010
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  17. DrMartin

    bottleneck talks a load of rubbish

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    shop visit wont tell you much unfortunately. It's a factory and their demo room sounds awful.. (its more of a store room)
     
    bottleneck, Mar 21, 2010
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  18. DrMartin

    smallangryboy

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    Have you though about supplementing with a decent sub for bass?

    Can really open up smaller stand mounted speakers or even slimmer floorstanders.

    They can be discrete, say doubling as a coffee table, and you can use smaller speakers for your mains, so wife friendly.
     
    smallangryboy, Jul 30, 2010
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  19. DrMartin

    zanash

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    always found them very helpful and keenly priced
     
    zanash, Jul 31, 2010
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  20. DrMartin

    mosfet

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    My dealings with Wilmslow Audio have generally been good.
     
    mosfet, Aug 8, 2010
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