The Finalist Monitor
A smaller monitor sized Finalist design using high value drivers.
by Curt Campbell
Main / Design Goals
I have Mark and the gang at Meniscus to thank for the idea and support for the Finalist Monitor design. Use the same drivers as the Finalist design, but leave off the woofer for a smaller, more personally sized design suitable for surrounds, desktop speakers, or anywhere a small speaker with good sound is required. Per Marks suggestion, we utilized the NE149-08 Eight-ohm driver this time to make it amp friendly. And of course, the ubiquitous RS28F tweeter.
A 2 way vented design with the Dayton RS28F fabric dome tweeter, and the Vifa NE149W-08 reed paper cone neodymium driver housed in an conventional vented enclosure.
Nominal Impedance: I'll call this one 8 ohms as the impedance curve flirts with, but never quite reaches 5 ohms at any frequency, and spends as much of its time above 8 ohms as it does below. The impedance is above 10 ohms below 120 Hz. The minima are 5.5 ohms at 200 Hz, and again dips briefly to 4 ohms between 2500 and 3000 Hz, but then increases to above 8 ohms at higher frequencies. The worst amplifier load is 4 ohms and -20 degrees at 2500 Hz. This suggests an easy load for any reputable 6 ohm rated amplifier.
Dimensions: external: 8.5" wide, 12.5" tall, 10.0" deep
Basic Sensitivity: Approximately 84 dB / 2.83v / 1 meter
Max SPL: (Modeled at woofer published Xmax) 102 dB / 1 meter.
Imaging & Presentation:
I was very pleased (but not surprised) at how these turned out. While there are a great many small 2 ways out there, (-And let’s be honest, in all likelihood some of those are excellent designs in their own right, and may better the Finalist Monitors in one aspect or another/) In spite of this, I felt the Finalist Monitors brought much of the sound of the Finalists home in a much smaller package and at a very attractive price. The NE149's are overachievers when it comes to bass extension and reproduction in general. With a bit of front wall reinforcement, they produce usable bass well into the 30's, yet still shine in their midrange performance. The RS28's are just amazing considering their cost. Here's what Jim Holtz says about these drivers in the Finalists.
See full design below