You are here

Avantone Mixcube - damaged cone

All about the tools and techniques involved in capturing sound, in the studio or on location.

Avantone Mixcube - damaged cone

Postby Andy McBain » Fri Sep 25, 2020 7:27 pm

Evening all! Was hoping for a some insight into a potential speaker issue...

I just received the following active mixcube from an Ebay seller -

ImagePhoto 25-09-2020, 18 16 21 by Andy McBain, on Flickr

There's been a small amount of damage in transit - the dent in the soft rim around the speaker cone. The seller was very apologetic.

I'm just wondering wether this is superficial damage or something to worry about? The speaker seems to sound fine - in a grotty midrange sort of way! But I've never heard one before to make a basis of comparison.

If there was any damage to the cone, what sort of things would I be looking out for?

If it's just cosmetic damage I'd be more than happy to keep hold of it.

Hope someone can help :)

Best wishes

Andy
User avatar
Andy McBain
Regular
Posts: 325
Joined: Sun Mar 06, 2005 1:00 am

Re: Avantone Mixcube - potential issue?

Postby DC-Choppah » Fri Sep 25, 2020 11:48 pm

Just remove the speaker (4 screws) and push the foam back from the other side.

No harm, no foul.
User avatar
DC-Choppah
Frequent Poster
Posts: 1613
Joined: Fri Jul 20, 2012 12:00 am
Location: MD, USA

Re: Avantone Mixcube - potential issue?

Postby Andy McBain » Sat Sep 26, 2020 11:03 am

Thanks Choppah! That was far too much common sense for a Friday evening :headbang:

Unfortunately it didn't work. It's almost as if there's no lining or cushioning in that part of the speaker cone surround, and it just pops right back in again.

My hunch is that it's nothing to worry about and considering the great price I got for the speaker it's probably not worth the hassle of sending back... so I'll live with it, unless anyone has any thoughts to the contrary?

Cheers :)
User avatar
Andy McBain
Regular
Posts: 325
Joined: Sun Mar 06, 2005 1:00 am

Re: Avantone Mixcube - potential issue?

Postby DC-Choppah » Sat Sep 26, 2020 5:41 pm

It will be more fun to talk about how to use this speaker when mixing!

I have one too.


One way to use it is to start the whole mix on it. Try to make it sound good on that one little speaker!

Then when the mix sounds as good as you can. Flip back to your main speakers. Then just adjust the 'new' stuff. Mainly the bass, highs, and stereo stuff.

Then flip back and make it sound good on both.

Try it that way once and see what happens.

This process seems to produce mixes that translate pretty well.

They certainly come out different anyway.
User avatar
DC-Choppah
Frequent Poster
Posts: 1613
Joined: Fri Jul 20, 2012 12:00 am
Location: MD, USA

Re: Avantone Mixcube - damaged cone

Postby Andy McBain » Sun Sep 27, 2020 11:45 am

Thanks Choppah! Yeah I'm finding it remarkably easy to balance a mix on this thing - like it brings the "front to back" perspective right into focus.

That said, it's making me work a lot harder as I'm hearing all sorts of horrible clicks, pops and other junk in my recordings that I didn't notice before! :bouncy:
User avatar
Andy McBain
Regular
Posts: 325
Joined: Sun Mar 06, 2005 1:00 am

Re: Avantone Mixcube - damaged cone

Postby ManFromGlass » Sun Sep 27, 2020 12:21 pm

I always wanted one or two for mixing on. My hesitation is all the research I would need to do to find the right amplifier. (And possibly the expense of the amp)
One of the best tv and film mixers over here uses them along with his killer surround system. We like to use the Mixcubes for critical listening. The big system makes everything sound too good.
User avatar
ManFromGlass
Frequent Poster (Level2)
Posts: 3434
Joined: Sun Jul 24, 2011 12:00 am
Location: In Canada, eh?

Re: Avantone Mixcube - damaged cone

Postby Dan LB » Sun Sep 27, 2020 1:14 pm

ManFromGlass wrote:I always wanted one or two for mixing on. My hesitation is all the research I would need to do to find the right amplifier. (And possibly the expense of the amp)

No need to hesitate! They come in an active version too. :)
http://www.avantonepro.com/mixcube-acti ... k-mono.php

Sold in pairs or singularly.

FWIW I drive my pair of passives from a Quad 520f
User avatar
Dan LB
Frequent Poster
Posts: 1439
Joined: Sat Jan 28, 2006 1:00 am
Location: Wicklow, Ireland

Re: Avantone Mixcube - damaged cone

Postby ManFromGlass » Sun Sep 27, 2020 1:29 pm

Thanks Dan,
How do you double check your low end? Good headphones? Maybe it’s not too crazy to add a sub to them?
User avatar
ManFromGlass
Frequent Poster (Level2)
Posts: 3434
Joined: Sun Jul 24, 2011 12:00 am
Location: In Canada, eh?

Re: Avantone Mixcube - damaged cone

Postby Dan LB » Sun Sep 27, 2020 3:32 pm

ManFromGlass wrote:Thanks Dan,
How do you double check your low end? Good headphones? Maybe it’s not too crazy to add a sub to them?

In addition to the Mix Cubes, my monitoring consists of a pair of Neumann KH120 monitors along with Sennheiser HD25 and Beyerdynamic DT880 headphones.

I wouldn’t add a sub to the Avantones - they’re not designed to be used as your only monitors, just as a reference.

I mostly just use one Mix Cube as a mono, bandpassed check.
User avatar
Dan LB
Frequent Poster
Posts: 1439
Joined: Sat Jan 28, 2006 1:00 am
Location: Wicklow, Ireland

Re: Avantone Mixcube - damaged cone

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Sun Sep 27, 2020 4:17 pm

ManFromGlass wrote:Maybe it’s not too crazy to add a sub to them?

erm... pretty crazy...

The strength of the Auratone-a-like is that it's a sealed box with a single speaker. So no crossover-related and no port-related phase shifts, resulting in near-perfect time alignment.

Adding a subwoofer would inherently scupper that key benefit immediately.
User avatar
Hugh Robjohns
Moderator
Posts: 28604
Joined: Fri Jul 25, 2003 12:00 am
Location: Worcestershire, UK
Technical Editor, Sound On Sound

Re: Avantone Mixcube - damaged cone

Postby Martin Walker » Sun Sep 27, 2020 10:49 pm

ManFromGlass wrote:We like to use the Mixcubes for critical listening. The big system makes everything sound too good.

I've found this too - I've got small but very revealing ATC loudspeakers, a reasonably treated room, plus custom EQ curve courtesy of Sonarworks Reference 4 to smooth out channel differences/deficiencies, so playback sounds great.

I can get great mixes from this chain, but still need to double check bass levels & mid balance on a small single cone mono loudspeaker, since sometimes the ATC are just SO revealing that I don't realise one part of the mix is either 'sticking out' or 'getting lost'.

I wouldn't like to mix solely on the 3-inch mono speaker, but if my mixes sound good on that as well as on the ATCs, they tend to sound good in the cold light of day on other systems too.


Martin
User avatar
Martin Walker
Moderator
Posts: 16393
Joined: Wed Jan 13, 2010 9:44 am
Location: Cornwall, UK

Re: Avantone Mixcube - damaged cone

Postby Andy McBain » Mon Sep 28, 2020 2:01 pm

Good to hear other folk are having similar experiences - I can see why Mike Senior recommended a cube type speaker as an essential tool in "Mixing Secrets For The Home Studio". It seems to be a blessing in my less than ideal room, and has revealed some shortcomings in my small monitors (Eve Audio SC203).

Just to veer back to my original question briefly - I've got the seller hanging at the moment as the damage to the cone was obviously caused in transit. Should I be confident to write it off as cosmetic damage and move on? I did get an excellent price for the speaker and it seems to be doing it's job. Sorry for seeking validation but you lot are cleverer than me :bouncy:
User avatar
Andy McBain
Regular
Posts: 325
Joined: Sun Mar 06, 2005 1:00 am

Re: Avantone Mixcube - damaged cone

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Mon Sep 28, 2020 3:02 pm

If you can't hear a problem I wouldn't worry too much about it.

I imagine a damaged surround would increase the distortion slightly at low frequencies, particularly at higher listening volume.

It may be possible to push it back into shape carefully from behind if you are willing to dismantle the cabinet/driver, or maybe from the front with tape (although that risks further damaging the doping painted onto the surround).

Worst case, you may need to replace the driver eventually...
User avatar
Hugh Robjohns
Moderator
Posts: 28604
Joined: Fri Jul 25, 2003 12:00 am
Location: Worcestershire, UK
Technical Editor, Sound On Sound

Re: Avantone Mixcube - damaged cone

Postby Andy McBain » Mon Sep 28, 2020 3:19 pm

Hugh Robjohns wrote:If you can't hear a problem I wouldn't worry too much about it.

I imagine a damaged surround would increase the distortion slightly at low frequencies, particularly at higher listening volume.

It may be possible to push it back into shape carefully from behind if you are willing to dismantle the cabinet/driver, or maybe from the front with tape (although that risks further damaging the doping painted onto the surround).

Worst case, you may need to replace the driver eventually...

Thanks Hugh! It's hasn't been possible to push it back out when I looked inside. It's almost like the padding in that part of the surround is completely gone, so it just pops back in again.

At the levels i'm working at (and that I'm pretty much limited to with neighbours) it seems to sound fine - the cone is barely moving.

I think I'll get on with it and hope for the best :thumbup:
User avatar
Andy McBain
Regular
Posts: 325
Joined: Sun Mar 06, 2005 1:00 am

Re: Avantone Mixcube - damaged cone

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Mon Sep 28, 2020 3:42 pm

Andy McBain wrote:It hasn't been possible to push it back out when I looked inside. It's almost like the padding in that part of the surround is completely gone, so it just pops back in again.

I doubt there's any padding. The rubber has some 'doping' painted on it to help control its compliance and reduce resonances. That has become creased through the contact damage during transit.

You might have more success if you get it warm with a hairdryer before tying to reshape it, but if it sounds okay now I wouldn't risk it, personally, as you could end up weakening the glue holding the cone to the surround too!
User avatar
Hugh Robjohns
Moderator
Posts: 28604
Joined: Fri Jul 25, 2003 12:00 am
Location: Worcestershire, UK
Technical Editor, Sound On Sound

Next