It has always been said that we are all products of our environment, and those closest to us have a profound effect upon us while we meander through childhood and finally into adulthood.
Me, I grew up tinkering around with stereo gear and listening to music and at the age of 12 built a pair of speakers for myself. No 4th order Butterworth crossover of course, just a pair of 6″ twin cone Plessey drivers I’d bought from Axent Audio in New Lynn, hastily bolted into rather primitive plywood bookshelf cabinets I’d glued and screwed (no sniggering please) together.
Harking back to those halcyon days, I can’t for the life of me remember what they sounded like but DIY continued to nag away in the back of my head until finally I decided to do something about it.
Now growing older usually means growing smarter, and thus with me it was in the form of a pair of large quarter wave Voigt cabinets I’d spotted on TradeMe last August – sans drivers.
All they needed was a pair of 8″ Fostex FE206 full range drivers and the usual finishing and they would be good to go. The cabinets themselves looked well constructed out of ship ply, and I started to lick my lips as I clicked the ‘buy now’ button.
Once I’d lugged them home I promptly placed an order for the drivers and after consulting the internet, also purchased some wooden phase plugs – these would require carefully cutting out the dust cap on each.
So once the drivers arrived I carefully performed the required surgery, attached the phase plugs and some decent speaker cable along with a pair of binding posts I had lying around, bolted the drivers into each cabinet and attached some M6 spikes to each speaker base.
Once all that DIY was out of the way I heaved the speakers into place, replacing my treasured Wharfedale Opus One’s in the process, and then cabled them up to my Korsun 250wpc amplifier.
Not expecting much, my eyes almost popped out of my head as soon as the opening bars of Bob Marley’s Rastaman Vibration entered my eardrums. The sound from the get-go, was actually a revelation. Bass was dry and although not utterly subsonic, still went low enough and more importantly was exceptionally tight and fast.
What was most impressive was the single driver speakers ability to create a soundstage, and here I was experiencing sounds emanating from behind my seating position as well as the extreme left and right hand side of the couch. It was quite awesome, and since cabling them up they have hardly been out of the system. That was until my baby TDL’s arrived a few weeks back, but these have now been relegated to the spare room amongst my other Hi-Fi clutter.
So what’s next for the Vofo’s? I’m going to have them professionally lacquered – probably a gloss red metallic pearl with a piano finish, and I’ve already had diecast metal badges made for them.
Mark my words, these simple one driver speakers have reinvigorated my music listening!