SP38, built by Emil, Macedonia

April 4th 2006:
Finally finished the SP/38/XT25 ! Will make sure to shoot some pictures and send to you with some more comments.
In the meantime first impressions : very, very positive! Note I have the "old" V.7 x/over, i.e. the mid R is 3.8 and the tweeter (XT25) is in-phase, and will have to execute those changes which I only saw the other day, having wired and installed everything.
The sound is very - what's the word? - well, present(able). I mean it's all there, effortlessly presenting the sounds with plenty of details. "Detail" could be the key word here. Along with the BASS!! This is incredibly deep and powerful bass. I found it hard to believe, having had the same SP18 in a 17 or-so liters BR in two-way with XT25 and AR-series xo. On some bass-rich music (Patricia Barber, Cassandra Wilson..) I found that I need to stuff the BR with a roll of poly-wadding. As I said, details are aplenty, the highs very smooth, detailed and "there", but not shrill or aggressive. The cymbals have etheric aura around going on and on... just like it happens in real music-playing.
I am eager to try the recommended 4R7 in the midrange and reverse the tweeter phase...  But even as it is now is very good. I realize it will need some more hours breaking-in so will keep this configuration for another week or so.
With the point of reference being Manger active system, the spatial presentation is not quite as big or deep (nor would I expect it to be!), but it is tonally (timbrally?) correct. However compared to "itself" i.e. AR-series-xo-based two-way using the 18SP + XT25, this is NIGHT AND DAY difference!! I do allocate this high performance on the crossover and I congratulate and thank you for making it available to the rest of us! The driver-to-driver integration is as seamless as it can be - very smooth.
You are right in mentioning somewhere that SS 38 is probably the most under-rated SS driver! Phenomenal driver. As I said, the only "problem" might be the excessive bass (or I need to re-adjust myself..), but one easily solvable (to my ears) with stuffing the BR tube.  I really have a problem perceiving the enormous bass energy from such a modest-sized unit. Having said that, I do know the difference between "boomy" and "strong-but-accurate" bass. This is clearly the latter .. and probably need some more room positioning experimenting (they ARE a little too close to the back wall now..).

April 24th, 2006:
Finally got some photos of the SP-38. The final version is with 4R7 in the mid, and reversed phase on the XT25. Like I commented two weeks ago, the sound is very articulate - details!! - very dynamic and "strong", the 4R7 did subdue the mid to just the right level (I tried 5R6 as well, it was, I felt, a little too much..) Coherent, again I stress due to the excellent x/over, integrating the units seamlessly. The bass is just unbelievable ! Need to be pulled out at least 50-60 cm (or more). I found that on some records, mostly classical, I prefer the port open. On others, jazz, rock ... I do plug the port . Matter of taste I believe.
Next in line - A4 ..... finishing the enclosures.
Will post on them as well.
Rgds, Emil, Macedonia

Hi Emil.
Thanks for your mail. A lot of effort and considerations went into the SP38 and I can't tell how pleased I am from your report. Please allow me to report your comments and pictures, once available.   It's been a long time since I've heard the SP38 and I'll set them up again this evening to hear them again. Attenuation of the 3806 certainly may depend on personal taste and room acoustics, but the 4R7 may be worth a try. Basically it may provide a more tolerable speaker from poor recordings. The voicing of the upper midrange and lower treble is always a compromise as a flat response may reveal more details -  but poor recordings may be just too much. Indeed the 8531 is a potent bass driver and yes, too close to the wall and they get too much room gain and the bass may get too excessive. Looking forward to the pics.
Kind regards

April 24th, 2006:
I must say these are some extremely fine looking speakers. The work of a perfectionist! I couldn't be more pleased. May they provide you with many enjoyable hours of music listening.

SP38 and Monitor A4 built by Emil

Hi Troels
Enclosed some pics of the A4's I just finished.

These are my third version with these drivers! Originally I used the Dutch A4 x-over. Frankly, I was a little disappointed,
the sound was somehow flat and of a separate bass and treble - as opposed to a coherent one ... Later I tried a three-element (no cap) series x/over . The sound was different, albeit not necessarily better - more bass (a lot more - I guess the L2 inductor was not the happiest choice) and the whole thing sounded too mellow, syrupy.  Anyway, after Papa and Mama Bear, now came the Baby Bear ! The Ellam is just right !

Having listened to it a couple of days (still breaking in, the units were not used for a several months), and confirming the impressions with my audio friend and a cousin (himself a Lowther and tube type), I can say that the system - the crossover first and foremost - is very accurate , coherent and balanced at both ends. The bass is superb (but we all know already about the bass capabilities of the small 15W) , the mids are very smooth ( although not as detailed and of studio-monitor-type class as in 18SP38 ) and the highs are perfect! The metal dome D2800 is really a top driver but it
takes a proper x/over to exploit it.

In short - an excellent small-box system, of a highest caliber . Reminded me very much of an original ProAc Tablette - similar easy presentation , but with a lot more bass.

Emil Andreevski