Spectra 22, Detaching panels from drive units

Read more on the Acoustat Spectra 22 in our home audio section

Brian Wallen2006-01-21 15:41

Andy, some people just can\'t take no... I have the same interest as Steven Hickok, but will weasel a little and say that I only want to place the interfaces a couple of feet from my Spectra 22 panels that would be suspended from the ceiling. I am interested in developing a mounting strategy that will allow me to make limited movement of the panels from the back wall and to adjust their angle with respect to the listening spot of choice. I have a way to mount the interfaces securely near the ceiling. Mounting only the panels on a movable mechanism will be much easier and safer than mounting the entire unit. From your comments, I understand that insulation is a critical factor. The leads between the panel and interface must not leak to each other or to any nearby metal structure. Currently, using nylon or poly rope in some aestheic way seems like an effective strategy. I would probably put the leads in the split plastic flexible \"conduit\" neaten up wire runs. In my case, there are no animals, apart from the passing fly or mosquito, and no people that could come in contact with this wiring. Are there sources for wire with insulation rated for these high voltages? Are there special procedures for attaching connectors? I here publically declare to hold you harmless in providing information and to assume full responsibility for shocks and fires that may result from my experimentation with lengthening the leads between the interfaces and panels. Thanks. Brian Wallen

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Andy Szabo2006-07-15 12:29

If you are suspending the panels from the ceiling, and plan on mounting the interfaces on the ceiling, allow me to suggest that you turn the panels upside down. This will shorten the distance from the interface to where the wires exit the panels. The speakers are symmetric only from side-to-side, not top-to-bottom, so this should have no negative effect on sonic performance. Of course, you will need to swap the left and right speakers to keep the dispersion pattern correct. Hanging the speakers upside down is also a good idea because the bottom of the frame has much more structural rigidity than the top. The hanging cables or ropes should be attached to the bottom portion of the frame, or what would be the top if you have them upside down. Choosing a suitable wire is not all that critical. It should be high-voltage wire, with a rating of at least 10,000 volts (10 kV). Wire gauge can be very small: the original panel wires are only 24 gauge. Wire insulation type is not critical: the original wires are PVC, but other types are okay. Shielded wire is not necessary and not recommended. Wire like this is available from better electronics distributors (Newark, Allied, etc.), or possibly from your local TV repair shop. All connections should be soldered, with heat-shrink tubing protecting the splices. For maximum protection, keep a physical distance between the three groups of wires: red, white, and blue. Running the wires inside split-loom or PVC tubing is a good idea for both mechanical and electrical protection.

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