DIY 15" Rythmik Audio Direct Servo sealed subwoofer - Build Thread.

R B Customs

Member
Hi Guys,

Finally I can start a build thread!

It's going to drag on a little bit as I ordered the driver today, and pick the blanks up for the cabinet in a couple of days but I can start with some info and with some diagrams.

I've gone for the 1505 driver with the A370 PEQ3 amp from Rythmik audio in Texas. Rythmik Audio 15" servo subwoofer " DS1500 Custom Installation subwoofer this decission was after a lot of researching and contacting owners who have had their subs for a while. I've been sold on servo subs since hearing one, but mine will be the first rythmik sub I'll hear.
1505v.jpg

peqxb.jpg

The amp has a parametric EQ which will be a good start.

There was an option of a high powered 15" driver + amp but after weighing up the massive extra cost and coming to the conclusion that I would never ever need the extra power I've decided to go with the better of the two 15" drivers.

more info on the 15" drivers can be found here... warning: some of the marketing talk can go on a bit! : Rythmik Audio 15" servo driver• DS1500 Direct Servo driver

The cabinet is based on Rythmiks own plans and is a heavily braced, sealed 18mm MDF cabinet. I (was, until recently) a professional painter and the cab' will be getting finished in a true gloss black - I'll be writing a heavy tutorial on the process for this towards the end of the build, but I've just relocated from the North east to the North West, so most of my painting gear is in limbo at the moment - it will be an unpleasant MDF box for a while!

the cabinet will end up being around 3cu ft / 85 litres. Rythmik say their drivers work the same in more compact cabinets due to the servo. so if you're thinking that sounds a little bit small for a 15" sub, it does... but it's not a standard driver.


design:

cabexplodediag.jpg


It's a little step up from the 12" cabinet I was looking at earlier in terms of complexity, but this is just the kind of joinery task I was looking for. It was a toss-up between buying (investing) a table-saw or finding someone to cut the blanks for me. I found a well recomended local merchant who say they can cut my blanks perfectly, and all for £32 including the sheet of 18mm MDF - I'd be daft not to.

I've decided to get the brace parts cut for an ideal world, exact, no gap fit; this decission wasn't made easily but in the end I thought If I need to remove material then it's going to be easier than adding material to fill a gap, so I've allowed no shortened lengths in the blanks - this could come back to bite me but we'll see! it does mean I can buy some more tools if I need to though!

I provided the merchant with 2 cutting diagams to choose from. one needed less cuts, but this one would be more handleable (or something)

here's one:
rythmikcuttingdiag.jpg


it looks like it's going to be too tight to fit into an 8x4 sheet but it's just perfect. the gaps between the pieces are bigger than they look... but that's the timber merchants problem from now on! I don't know if this was down to good planning on rythmik's part, or just a happy accident.

It sounds daft, but I'm actually using this project as a means to buy and build up my stocks of tools and materials and to kit out my workshop. I've had all of these things and more in the past, but since relocating so far with a 2 and a half year gap of being a student inbetween I'm pretty much starting from scratch. A lot of what I had before has been left at my parents house.
Purchases so far include a router table, jigsaw, polyurethane glue, epoxy, T nuts, sash clamps, squares, and so on. I'm building some work benches later this week too.

wish me luck !
 
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ewizzy

Well-known Member
Looks like a really interesting project!

Keep us updated with lots of pictures please :)
 

R B Customs

Member
Looks like a really interesting project!

Keep us updated with lots of pictures please :)

will do... it's all about the pictures! it's going to be interesting for me, but by DIY standards it's pretty safe - I'm pretty much following instructions from now on.
 

aandpwoodley

Distinguished Member
Very interesting, amp looks very nice, look forward to seeing your progress
 

samhain

Well-known Member
god thats a complex bracing system alright. Will be interested to see progress.
 

mykyll2727

Active Member
I'll be very interested in this thread and will follow it closely. I've been interested in the Rythmik subs for some time. Thanks for sharing!
 

Shinx

Standard Member
Hi,

I just registered because this build seems to get very interessting for me. I planned to build 2 FV15HP for my home cinema, but at the moment the high transport costs stopped me. All reviews in US are really good about the rythmik, but funny, almost nobody has this in Europe. Except you...

So I look forward to your results.

Btw, how did you ship the kit to Europe?

Kind regardy

f*ggott
 

R B Customs

Member
Morning all... I'm loosing sleep over this one... I'm starting to think I should re-orientate the cab and have it front-firing instead of downfiring. reasearch into the subject makes me think front firing will have the (small) edge over down firing. I've been jumping around on my suspended floors and the're not the best.

room layout is currently like this. the'res a lot more room around the front L&R's than it looks.
livingroomtop.jpg


downfiring will be an easier, more forgiving build, but I'll have to get inventinve with legs. Front firing will be a more difficult build and I'll have to get inventive with a magnetic grille.

no kids, pets, RC cars or anything in the house btw. just us two nutters.

Hi,

I just registered because this build seems to get very interessting for me. I planned to build 2 FV15HP for my home cinema, but at the moment the high transport costs stopped me. All reviews in US are really good about the rythmik, but funny, almost nobody has this in Europe. Except you...

So I look forward to your results.

Btw, how did you ship the kit to Europe?

Kind regardy

f*ggott

Hey, welcome!

There's an international shipping option in the checkout. the price was $207 (US$) for shipping, which does sting... and then there's the tax and duty when it gets here, which will sting more. I know these subs were a lot cheaper to import a year or two ago, which is a little bit annoying as I've been looking at them for ages and this does seem to be a bad time to buy... If I didn't buy now though I don't think I ever would.

these are not the HP versions that you speak of by the way... that pushed the budget just too far (it had already been stretched from a 12")

there's one or two Rythmik builds in this forum, just search Rythmik in the sub forum and the DIY forum.
 

hoppaz

Well-known Member
I am building forward firing and going for the "naked" look with no grill. As for feet you can get rubber feet off the bay to stop it moving on wooden flooring.
 

R B Customs

Member
I am building forward firing and going for the "naked" look with no grill. As for feet you can get rubber feet off the bay to stop it moving on wooden flooring.

sounds great. I'll be going for something similar with a magnetic grille (but will probs never put it on.


updates for today!
I picked up the blanks. they're absolutly mm perfect except 2 panels, which are off by just over 1mm on one length; which is odd considering the others are so perfect. for £32 all in I can't complain.

img20120707142642.jpg

it came on a pallet too! that's great as I ahve absolutly no scrap wood at all for making little jigs and blocks that you would take for granted. literally every piece of wood int he garage has a purpose... so this pallet (and piece of ply) is very valuable!



This morning I also has a bit of a realisation that I had nowhere to build anything. so I very quickly (like 10 minutes) designed 2 workbenches based on 50x50 (2x2) stock and 1 sheet of 18mm chip board. I knocekd the design up in sketchup and had all 22 metres of planed timber cut to lenght while I waited. The only probelm was that I asked for 50x50 and I got 44x44, so there's a bit of an overhang on the top but that's fine.
I've built one up today and will finish the other tomorrow. quite pleased with them. they were cheap ish and are solid.
I originally planned to nip to ikea for some metal legs and get some tops cut to make crude benches, but this mini project has got me back into the swing of things to minimise silly mistakes ont he main build due to woodworking freshness (not built anything for a couple of years! )

img20120707195943.jpg


I'm having to get my parents to mail me down a single router round-over bit from my set which I left up North. I went out to try and get one today and they're £32 EACH! so the next task is to build the other bench and then cut the holes int he braces ready to be rounded over when my bit arrives. 900mm sash clamps are also being delivered tomorrow.

not sure where the driver and sub are or what their status is... Rythmik's communacation is not the best :(
 
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R B Customs

Member
problem number one...

MDF is 18.49mm thick. which has thrown everything off. This is annoying as I specifically told the cutters not to proceed if the mdf was anything but exactly 18.00mm thick so that I could re-measure and give them different plans.

It's going to give me 1mm gaps / overhangs which is quite a lot. I'm currently playing with my router table to see if I can set it up to just shave 1mm off certain parts... I just don't have any scrap 18mm MDF :(


not sure if this is grounds to get them to re-cut the panels or not as it's a bit of a cock-up on their part.
 

scottthehat

Distinguished Member
problem number one...

MDF is 18.49mm thick. which has thrown everything off. This is annoying as I specifically told the cutters not to proceed if the mdf was anything but exactly 18.00mm thick so that I could re-measure and give them different plans.

It's going to give me 1mm gaps / overhangs which is quite a lot. I'm currently playing with my router table to see if I can set it up to just shave 1mm off certain parts... I just don't have any scrap 18mm MDF :(


not sure if this is grounds to get them to re-cut the panels or not as it's a bit of a cock-up on their part.
get them to recut, not worth the hassle if you told them then they should check.
 

R B Customs

Member
get them to recut, not worth the hassle if you told them then they should check.

they offered a refund, or a free second batch based on new plans. can't ask any fairer than that. so I've taken them up on a recut, but I'm going to pay them the £12 cutting fee, as to be fair, I'm being a pretty demanding person when it comes to accuracy and they did an ace job on the previous batch.

good service!
 

R B Customs

Member
Hey all.

I picked up the second attempt blanks today. they did them completly free of charge and are all good. I also picked up some more bits and pieces including some hole-saws and more clamps.



img20120714130158.jpg


I started the day off by cutting some 4" holes in two of the braces. My drill pres is still at home, and until my Parents come to visit I'm using a £15 cordless drill for all drilling tasks :( each of these hole-cuts killed thebattery.


img20120714124956.jpg


next I took the work over to my router table which I got off gumtree for £25! total bargain (full kit) I had to wait for some router bits to be mailed down to me during the week. The table makes really easy work of doing this and I felt like I had a lot more control than I would with a hand held router.




img20120708162839.jpg


Other than that I put together the other bench so I now have the option of putting two together like this. for now I have them side by side along the length of my garage.

some 900mm clamps also got delivered... we'll see how they work out.


I've emailed Rythmik to ask for a status update as I've not heard anythign since I ordered the kit on the 3rd. Based on the 2 week shipping estimation on the website it could be here on tuesday the 17th... but I've never really though it would be.
 

R B Customs

Member
Hi,

any news? Did the shipment arrived yet?

Kind regards

f*ggott


Hey,

I got it yesterday!


img20120724184328.jpg


I'll get some better images up later on. as I've been quite busy



img20120724223501.jpg


Started on the baffle; I had a shed-load of tools delivered from my parents house over the weekend so I can get cracking with the build now.

to be honest though I'm torn between down-firing and front-firing AGAIN. I decided to go down the front-firing route, but now I'm backing out again and sticking to the original, original plan.

I'm hoping it won't make any difference, so I'm going with down-firing for now... it's only another £32 odd to build another cabinet if I really want to.

more pics as they come!
 

R B Customs

Member
Hi guys,

no pics of the kit for now as it's dark, but here's how the build is going

I've finished the baffle tonight.

img20120725213730.jpg

I made a jig for the my router to first cut a deep and wide recess into the front baffle, and then cut a through-hole (?! correct term?) slightly smaller than the recess.

I wasn;t quite sure how t go about this as I needed the centre pivot hole to remain attached in order to cut a full hole out of thebaffle. I settled on scrwing the middle, soon to be cut-out disc to a scrap piece of MDF, and then clamping the work and the scrap to the bench. It nearly killed the router as I didn't plunge deep enough to cut into the sacraficial scrap wood s the bit was kind of bouncing across the top surface of the scrap - look out for this if you ever do it.


the Jig woorked fine but my cheap router is not all that acurate. I don;t thing you will ever see it, but the coutout is not an absolute *perfect* circle. but it's as close as it ever can be with that router.

I trimmed the inner baffle to give .5mm gap when it sits in the space left in the rest of the cabinet. Since I'm gluing the inner baffle to the outer baffle I'd rather have this tiny gap than not.



img20120725223059.jpg

I'm using polyurethane glue throughout this project. I wet one piece and covered the other in glue. with the help of my girlfriend we aligned the two pieces using scrap wood all around the edge and felt for a uniform lip around the work to indicate the /5mm gap was centered. I've clamped the work up and will leave it until I need it.

img20120725224330.jpg



here's a little preview of the driver inside the outer baffle before I got everything covered in glue.
img20120725214800.jpg
 

Coll

Active Member
As a matter of interest when I make cabinets I get the local timber merchant to cut all the mdf panels to size and assemble using 18mm x 18mm battens. I put the screws through the battens and into the mdf that way you get very strong joints. Obviously the battens reduce the internal volume but overall dimensions can be increased to allow for this. Using this method you can even have removable back panels if you wish provided of course you use a gasket and not glue.
 

Coll

Active Member
Theres not much involved, you can cut the batten with any old saw (jigsaw, tenon saw etc) and then you only need a drill and screwdriver. You could even line up the battens together and cut with the router say 4 at a time.
Ive made speaker cabinets for years and have always used battens. Many years ago (giving my age away now) speakers were rear mounted so I had to have removable back panels.
 

R B Customs

Member
Arcam_boy said:
Loving this build!

I wish I had the tools and skill to do something like this myself!

Mate , as long as you can get the blanks cut accurately by someone else like I did its easy ! I could have had everything done ready to assemble but I like making stuff so opted to do it this way. I think you could do the whole thing g with £30 router , corded drill and a jigsaw. I'm just buying tools as I need them at the moment.

In terms if updates , I've got 12 more holes to cut. They're taking an age to do and are creating a lot of noise. I'd like to put it down to my cheap hole saws but my not so cheap Bosch hole saw is just as bad. I had to stop cutting last night as it was getting late. Will continue tonight ! Might even get something assembled on Saturday.
 

Coll

Active Member
This is not a critism of you but I think the manufacturers design is over elaborate bracing wise no wonder you are finding it difficult cutting all the holes.
If it had be me I would have changed the design to something more simple and recalculated the net volume, but it isnt so I have got to hand it to you you are doing a great job.
 
Trust me mate if I thought I could do it I would. I'd love to build a nice sub with a 15/18" driver for my xbox room in a large cabinet but I don't have a clue about using a router etc :-( maybe one day!

Keep up the good work, a well braced cabinet sounds a good idea to me in all fairness. Have a look at a B&W subwoofer.
 

R B Customs

Member
This is not a critism of you but I think the manufacturers design is over elaborate bracing wise no wonder you are finding it difficult cutting all the holes.
If it had be me I would have changed the design to something more simple and recalculated the net volume, but it isnt so I have got to hand it to you you are doing a great job.

Hey, It's the complexity of the bracing that attracted me to this design, that and it's a design built for these subs and amps. I've looked at many DIY subs on the run-up to my build, and a lot of priorities seem to go on loudness and depth, but rarely do I see the emphasis on sound quality and cabinet stiffness (sorry if that comes across wrong, I know everyone seeks sound quality and a decent cab'). I haven't built enough to know if I'm wrong, but I'd like to match the kind of cabinet stiffness that I have in the rest of my system. in my experience with loudspeakers, the cabinet accounts for a great portion of the sound quality.

The difficulty I'm having with the holes is down to cheap hole-saws and fear of waking the dead (I'll be hapy if the sub ends up as loud as the drilling operations lol!) I've not got many left to do now, 6 in fact! I've already had a word with next door to tell me if the noises from my garage get too bad.



Trust me mate if I thought I could do it I would. I'd love to build a nice sub with a 15/18" driver for my xbox room in a large cabinet but I don't have a clue about using a router etc :-( maybe one day!

Keep up the good work, a well braced cabinet sounds a good idea to me in all fairness. Have a look at a B&W subwoofer.

have a look at the sub Hoppaz is putting together... he got his wood cut, baffles made and screw-holes placed ready to assemble with as much ease as an ikea bookshelf. he got the contact from ebay and it's very reasonable.

[wrote this last night... forgot to post! big update coming up...
 

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