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PostPosted: Sun Nov 30, 2008 10:26 pm 
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150dollarcar wrote:
m wrote:
150dollarcar wrote:
nothing wrong with foam but I must say that after a few years foam surrounds literally desintegrate and there's nothing left to keep the speaker cone linear. it's also a lot more fragile than rubber. very easy to tear.



There are plenty of treated foam surrounds that will last just as long as rubber will and there are also lots of foam surrounds that are just as durable as rubber.



name me one speaker that uses foam surround that is as durable and lasts as long as rubber.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 01, 2008 1:26 am 
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1995Firefly4dr wrote:
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Not really. I should really qualify my remarks a little more than making blanket statements. Take a foam and rubber surround, put them on a table and come back in 30 years and the foam will likely be weakened if not already falling apart while the rubber still looks good. In a home setup this is a genuine concern (if your buying high end) because its plausible to keep a good speaker for at least that long. In a car its much less likely. Even still, I have a cheap Pioneer sub from 1995 thats been used in a garage for the last 10 or so years in addition to the 3 years it spent in a car. Its got a foam surround that you can pinch without it splitting. I suppose if you had it out in direct sunlight (UV is brutal to speakers and especialy to foam) it would have more wear but its fair to say it hasn't had the greatest life (my garage temps range from 35+ in the summer to -20 in the winter) it could. Now this was a cheap $150ish sub 13 years ago when it was bought. Fast forward to today where you have foam that is much more durable than what was available 13 years ago and I have no real doubt you'll get a good 20 years out of the speaker if not more. Indeed I have heard many home speakers in the 20+ year range that still had their original foam surrounds in good condition.

In a car I'm sure the rubber will outlast the foam but in reality theres a good chance that the speaker will be replaced before the foam has a chance to deteriorate. How many car systems have you heard with subs (regardless of surround material) that were more than 10 years old? Not likely very many. I certainly wouldn't base my purchase on surround material regardless of it being for home or car audio use. Indeed some of the best speakers in the world still use a foam surround when rubber is readily available.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 01, 2008 10:17 am 
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At least you can admit when you're wrong :D

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 01, 2008 2:20 pm 
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Honestly Mike I haven't tinkered seriously with audio in the past year or so. I still read about it every now and again but I just haven't had the time/budget to play with it as much. If I get around to it I'll try to find the article I read about new foam compositions that make them virtualy as durable as rubber but without the downfalls (like weight and puckering for instance) that rubber surrounds can experience. Some formulation that was on par with Santoprene surrounds and didn't suffer the breakdown over time that some other foams can. It was a while back and written by one of the more elite speaker companies or some engineer that used to work for them...I want to say Manville Smith but I don't think it was him.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 02, 2008 1:17 am 
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cool man glad you elaborated. to think of it, you are right that in general speakers don't last long enough to worry about it. at the same time though, especially in subwoofers, only the most basic of entry level speakers still use foam. almost all of them are rubber. I think it's great that your pioneer has held up so well, but I just wonder how when I see cars in the shop every day that are 10 years old or less and the foam has desintegrated around the cone.

but you are right, almost all of the time speakers don't last as long as the materials used to make them.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 02, 2008 8:47 am 
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150dollarcar wrote:
only the most basic of entry level speakers still use foam. almost all of them are rubber.



I disagree here. JL Audio W7 was the first sub that came to mind that still uses foam. There are others though. Some of the RE subs still use foam, Fi Car Audio, Incriminator Audio, Ascendant Audio and a few others I'm not remembering. I agree that more are going to rubber but theres still a slew of them that run foam. When I was more hardcore into car audio and worked at a shop I saw more than a few older subs that were still alive (I know of an old MTX Thundercast thats still beating hard with its foam still in good condition) and well. I also have a friend who has those old Cerwin Vega home speakers with the 15" driver. They are about 20 years old now and still have lots of life left. They were in such good condition in fact I had considered buying them for myself.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 02, 2008 10:58 am 
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yeah the vega's for example though still have recone kits available for cheap. so even if they go they aren't gone

I think cdt still uses foam, but all the major brands have switched it. RF, MTX, sony, Polk, Alpine, JBL, Infinity, Pioneer have switched from foam to a woven foam-ish surround, jvc, PA, Panasonic, clarion, half of kicker (entry level's still use foam), boston, kenwood, Image dynamics, Diamond, soundtream, I think focal, etc.

I'm surprised to hear JL still uses it on their top of the line, they've probably found a way to make that foam fairly strong. actually the pioneer "version" of foam is actually pretty strong.

so yeah you got me on one, it's cool to be proven wrong even if it's one rare exception. but honestly for subwoofers foam surround is an endangered species.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 02, 2008 12:22 pm 
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150dollarcar wrote:
so yeah you got me on one, it's cool to be proven wrong even if it's one rare exception.


Actualy it was 5 but heres a few more that still use foam:


Alphasonic
Orion HCCA went back to foam from NBR
Soundstream XXX15
Focal K2
CDT
Atomic
Cerwin Vega
MA Audio
Memphis
Mmatts
Oz Audio
Power Accoustic Mojos are still foam
SPL
Mach 5 Audio
Elemental Designs
Treo Engineering
CSS


I'm sure theres more but as I'm partial to neither foam or rubber (if it works I don't care what it is) I'm just not gonna blow a lot of time trying to argue it. I do agree with you though...foam is a dying material for subwoofers (well speakers in general). I remember only a couple of years ago foam was used in the majority of subs and now rubber is way more common than it was. I would venture a guess that in another 5 years there will be hardly any speakers with foam. It seems as if though rubber surround technology is making large leaps in being as good as foam (accousticaly) ever was. Oh the Pioneer sub is neither rubber or foam...its a type of woven surround. It may be coated in rubber though ;).

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 02, 2008 11:15 pm 
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I never meant to argue man this is a little stupid to get worked up over, it's discussion.

I think the acoustic advantages of foam are sort of a thing of the past because if you really look at speakers now the surrounds usually accommodate the speakers a little better than they did 10- 15 years ago, like they're putting larger rolls in them so that even at XMAX they aren't going to invert or strain or ripple, so there goes that problem.

totally just hijacked this guys build. sorry guys


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 02, 2008 11:47 pm 
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150dollarcar wrote:
I never meant to argue man this is a little stupid to get worked up over, it's discussion.



I'm not worked up...sorry if you see it that way.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 03, 2008 2:28 am 
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I meant mutually, I know we're alright here we're not hurting each other's feelings, but let's both take a step back and start again with a little less hostility :)


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 03, 2008 3:08 am 
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now all that is left is to kiss and make up

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 09, 2009 7:13 am 
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Page one of this post was awsome, page two... :huh: Any how, I love seeing someone else put in a good sounding system without breaking the bank. I also love the reviews on the equipment. I'm going to check out the Hypnotic amps, and the other one the fella mentioned, started with a B I think.

Any how, fun post, thanks!


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