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Thread: My JBL 4355 build

  1. #1
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    My JBL 4355 build

    Just admiring Challenger604's beautiful 4355 project over at the "4355 Monitor plans" thread I thought it's time to give you a glimpse at my 4355 version. It is, of course, not finished yet (the cabinet is lacking surface treatment) but this is going to happen soon.
    The cabinets are made of 25/20 mm beech ply, which is a really great material in terms of strength. But building such a beast from stuff that hard and heavy isn't exactly a piece of cake. But birch ply or MDF really can't compete with this, so I am finally happy after a lot of bruises and scratches .

    I've made only minor changes to the original plans, for example there is now a support for the 2441 that really deserves the name and not that lousy sheet metal angle supporting the horn, not the driver.

    Sourcing the drivers wasn't that easy here in Germany and so I ended up buying 2202, 2441, and 2405 in the US which didn't make things exactly cheaper, but everything turned out to be decent quality stuff, so I am fine with that.
    The woofers began their lives as E140 and got freshly reconed to 2235H. At least that's what I thought, In fact the additional mass rings got folded, so I ended up with 2234H with a slightly stronger motor (due to the stronger magnetisation of the E140 magnets). That didn't turn out to be a real problem. With the original 28 Hz cabinet alignment, the system is tuned a little bit too low, which can be easily corrected with a bass equalizer.
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    Finding the right colour for the baffle ended up with "RAL5007 brillantblau". The RAL chart is a standard colour code very common here in Germany - very useful, if you know the number, you can get (more or less) the same tone whereever you ask.

    As for cabinet dampening, I didn't use the usual fiberglass stuff. It's not very effective and a pain in the a... to work with. I used a suitable amount of dirt cheap Ikea piilows, which is nothing but polyester wadding, exaxtly what we want here. Measurements showed tthe amount of absorbtion is just right.

    The speakers made their first public appearance on last autumn's "European Triode Festival" in Berlin and did a really nice job. We had lots of amps and active crossovers to try, with some really unexpected results.

    The actual state of things is to be seen on the last picture. I had to dye the diaphragms to black, otherwise I would have ended up with too many different tones.

    So much for now, I hope you like what you see.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member BMWCCA's Avatar
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    Wow!!

    Strong work. The build quality appears to be superb. Ikea pillows? Who'd have though of that. I'll have to remember it.

    They look great just as they are and the blue color seems perfect on my monitor.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Welcome to Lansing Heritage!
    ". . . as you have no doubt noticed, no one told the 4345 that it can't work correctly so it does anyway."—Greg Timbers

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    Great build! I bet there's not many of those in Germany.

    Is that last pic at the Triode Fest? Looks like a whole lot of speakers of different types on hand.

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    That last pic is taken in an old gym which serves us as measuring space. The second last is from ETF; you can find more impressions here: http://www.holgerbarske.com/etf2014/index.html

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    Just starting to mount the acoustic lenses in front of the 2441s.
    Does anyone know if the hook tape on the speaker front for fixing those is stapled or do we rely on the adhesive?

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    Quote Originally Posted by .:hb:. View Post
    Just starting to mount the acoustic lenses in front of the 2441s.
    Does anyone know if the hook tape on the speaker front for fixing those is stapled or do we rely on the adhesive?
    The adhesive alone has been adequate in my experience. Have done two or three horns. A staple would tend to warp the surface as well - not good. Can always add staples if all else fails. Mine have been in service approx 10 years to date.

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    Senior Member 1audiohack's Avatar
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    My 4350's have staples.

    Barry.
    If we knew what the hell we were doing, we wouldn't call it research would we.

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    Member tinpan's Avatar
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    Let me wipe the drool off my keyboard

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    Hello Holger,
    I recently saw your article on the 4355 in the latest Klang+Ton and it's nice to see the constructor here on Lansing Heritage too!

    I agree that sourcing vintage JBL drivers in western Europe can be a major pain, especially the compression drivers.
    Most of them I saw were just bricks of rust with a JBL badge attached.

    Can you tell if the Edding 100 you used to dye the cones has a slightly purple glow in direct sunlight?
    I dyed my 2235H and 2123H with deskjet printer ink and the cones are deep black now but still have a bit of a purple glow in the sunlight, though.
    That's the main reason I'm considering giving them another coat but this time with the Edding ink.

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    Can you tell if the Edding 100 you used to dye the cones has a slightly purple glow in direct sunlight?
    Not much, but it ideed has. Keeping the coating as thin as possible definitely helps. Someone commenting on my blog has good results applying the edding ink with an airbrush gun, seems like a good idea.

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    Made some progress. Adding the 2308 definitely helps for short listening distances. Got the L-pads connected, lowering the 2441's output was a good idea. Until my tube crossover is finished, I am using a simple Monacor MCX-2000 for the active filter part; I am surprised how well it does.
    As for amplification, I am using a Bryston 4BSST² for the woofers and an Accuphase A-46 does the rest. I am really happy with the sound, but there's so much to try, tons of knobs to turn. This will keep me going for a while - exactly what I wanted .
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    Senior Member Krunchy's Avatar
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    Very very! nice Yep, you got plenty of knob turning time to keep you busy for a long while....Enjoy!
    Just Play Music.

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    Yes, Bravo! And when you get the itch (it never completely dies), that configuration is a natural for a big horn on top. Endless "knobs" to twiddle! Mike

  15. #15
    Senior Member pos's Avatar
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    Nice system!
    And I like your stands

    Any plan to use a digital crossover unit?

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