Dynaudio Special Forty

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Oliver Meyer, Oct 15, 2018.

  1. yodog

    yodog Active Member

    Is everyone still enjoying their special fortys?

    Anyone planning to attempt to swap out the capacitor(s) on the crossover board in their Dynaudios?

    I am contemplating the idea of using some pricy aluminum or silver Jentzen caps but have no idea what values the factory default capacitors are rated at in the s40’s. Anyone got an idea?

    This semi crazy idea occurred to me since I discovered after looking into my special 40’s bass reflex port in the rear with a flashlight that sadly one of my special 40’s has bunny ear shaped wires covered/lined with open cell type foam just loosely out in the open, technically partially blocking the rear ports exit path.

    My other special 40 speaker doesn’t show this manufacturing or shipping/handling defect and shining the light down the “good speaker” shows no obstructions in sight and just a clear direct view of the rear of the tweeter assembly.

    Anyhow I’m figuring if I am going to open up one of the speakers, perhaps I could do some more potentially worthwhile mods like upgrading the capacitors to high end jentzen caps.

    Any thoughts or info relating to my issue with one of my s40’s or relating to changing out capacitors and what rated values they might be would be really appreciated! Thanks all :)
  2. Davey

    Davey very clever with maracas

    SF Bay Area, USA
    More elements than I would've expected in a two-way first order crossover, but guess they are doing impedance compensation and maybe some other response filtering, definitely not very high end parts in use here, looks somewhat disappointing, though it is a clean layout ...

    jfeldt and yodog like this.
  3. yodog

    yodog Active Member

    What would you change if you had to change one component?

    and on a separate tangent, if you could, would you swap/upgrade every component on that board to a premium/higher quality component that would each have the exact same rated values?

    By the way, THANK YOU for the picture. If you have any higher res photos of the front or the back of the PCB please PM me or email them to me.... much much appreciated...
  4. Helom

    Helom I'll take the monkey coffins

    Replace those Bennic caps with Sonicaps.
  5. Tom Littlefield

    Tom Littlefield Forum Resident

    New Hampshire, USA
    Just replace my Excite X38's with Contour 20's and all i can say is WOW!!

    These stand mounts blow the floor standers out of the water, no comparison..
  6. Phil Thien

    Phil Thien Forum Resident

    Milwaukee, WI
    Yep, likely more than you'd find on a 2nd order xover. 1st order crossovers are actually sort of difficult to do well. And you have to start with drivers that can handle the bandwidth, too.

    Easier to do when you're Dynaudio and can manufacture your own drivers, but still not easy.

    Some of the Thiel 1st order crossovers are pretty mind-blowing, too. Very high parts count.
  7. Slack

    Slack Forum Resident

    The cabinet resonance claims are interesting.I owned some Contour 1.3s for a while and always thought they were compromised by some sort of cabinet colourations.Beautiful treble but quite woolly sounding.Some of the new Contour speakers I heard were a bit the same although probably better.
    The Confidence Platinum C1 however sounds superbly clean and natural so that is proof Dynaudio can make wonderful sounding small speakers.
    It is almost as if Dynaudio knows how to make fantastic sounding stand mounts but for marketing reasons has chosen to deliberately make its more affordable products less perfect.Either that or they think the less perfect ones might be a better match and more forgiving when used with the mid priced type amplifiers they are likely to be used with.
    TheKevster and yodog like this.
  8. Puma Cat

    Puma Cat Forum Resident

    East Bay, CA
    I've got some advice for you.

    If it's not broken, don't fix it. Also, modifying your Special 40 will void its warranty. Also, if you ever needed your Dyn's repaired, they can be sent back to the Dynaudio North America site in Illinois. If you modify them, they won't touch them, including repairing them.
    TheKevster and yodog like this.
  9. yodog

    yodog Active Member

    How will they know?

    Also, if what you say is true, then why is it that with my previous Dynaudio emit m10’s, one of the tweeters came with a small blemish/knick and so I contacted my dealer and they contacted Dynaudio North America and shipped me one tweeter assembly for my emit m10 and they told me directly via email to install the tweeter myself or if I don’t feel comfortable then I can ship it to my dealer and they can do it there. The Dynaudio North America representative even said its not hard to do, and that anyone can do it if you have a T15 screwdriver bit.

    I also contacted Dynaudio regarding the internal wiring visual mismatch with my special fortys and they just said I can open it up and apply some glue to the foam lined wire that looks like two small bunny ears, and push the ears to the left and right so they aren’t partially blocking the rear port hole/tube. They also casually said that it won’t affect the sound in any way (which i find hard to believe) and that it’s not a big issue at all and must’ve just been a harmless side effect from the transit stress or shipping and handling stress from fedex/ups. The guy said it won’t affect the sound at all, twice.

    I think it does because when I swap left and right to right and left, when the speaker that’s perfect and without flaws is positioned so it has the only true front corner of my room, the output and just the musicality of my system is so much more enjoyable presenting a nice dynamic range of sounds. But when I swap the speakers but keep the positioning identical, the musicality isn’t quite there as if there’s a slight to moderate hint that there could be an equipment mismatch. Also the output seems just slightly lower and it seems more one dimensional like its lacking that depth/air/ability to pause for that split second and to be honest I can’t help it but to really attribute most of these issues to the internal wiring mismatch.

    Just a random question, would dynaudio ever do a warranty exchange to a customers speakers and send the end user a new pair and take back yours? Just curious if and how their warranty works for the end user against any manufacturing defects or factory related production issues.
  10. UCrazyKid

    UCrazyKid Grand Puba of Funk

    They are your speakers, do with them as you please. @Puma Cat's comment is well within a company's right to refuse service under warranty. However, Dynaudio has a reputation of being EXTREMELY supportive of customers and standing behind their product. My dealings with Dynaudio North America has FAR exceeded any dealings I have had with their retailers and far exceeded my expectations. They create an excellent product and stand behind it.

    Regarding your current issue; in my opinion, what you have described as a defect (from factory or transport) is highly unlikely to have an effect on sound quality. Air flow through the length of the port is not likely to be significantly effected by two insulated wires just outside the port flare. I would suggest following Dynaudio's advice if you are concerned and tuck the wires to the side, perhaps use a ruler or similar "tool" to reach within the port and reposition the wire. Perhaps another test you can do, place the foam port plugs inside the speaker ports and then see if you can determine a difference between the sound between the two speakers. Alternatively, with the help of someone else, try a double blind test. Set the speakers not in their listening position and have the friend (without you present) place the speakers back in their listening position and see if you can correctly identify from listening which speaker has the defect. See how accurate you are in 10 random trials. Recording serial number of each choice. Then you will have your definitive answer, Could be a fun project, or may it's just because I'm a big science nerd.
    Glmoneydawg and yodog like this.
  11. Puma Cat

    Puma Cat Forum Resident

    East Bay, CA
    If you modify the crossover and send it back to them for repair (for example, the modification caused the speaker to become defective or not perform to specification), they'll know. And likely you'll have voided your warranty and they would be within their rights not to service or repair it.
    yodog likes this.
  12. Yamahaha

    Yamahaha Active Member

    Alberta, Canada
    The "hard to drive" or "you need good power to drive those" lines are absolute BS to get people buying more and more until they finally find synergy by accident.

    I have driven Dyn just fine with a Yamaha A-S2100, which all the "audiophile" dealers hate, because it performs so well for a decent price, albeit they've gone up in recent years. If you need 250w+ monoblcks to power bookshelves, the speakers are not the problem.
    timind, Puma Cat and yodog like this.
  13. Puma Cat

    Puma Cat Forum Resident

    East Bay, CA
    The speakers are especially not the problem when...they are Dynaudios. One of the very best loudspeaker companies in the world, no question. Also one of the finest manufacturers of dynamic loudspeaker drivers in the world, and one of the very best tweeters ever made by anyone, the Esotar. The list of premier loudspeaker manufacturers that have, or would like to, use Dynaudio drivers in their own speakers is as long as my arm.

    They stand by their products and their customers.
  14. yodog

    yodog Active Member

    Do any of you guys know if all the capacitors on the special forty crossover PCB are all made from the Bennic manufacture?

    Also, does anyone have any idea which capacitors from the picture above would have the largest impact on the sound/tone/crossover?
  15. timind

    timind phorum rezident

    Westfield, IN USA
    Suggest you start with Dynaudio's recommendation to move the wires if they bother you.

    If you want some advice, contact Jeff from Sonic Craft over at AudioCircle. He'll be happy to advise on which caps to replace. Hopefully you'll like the sonic changes you end up with. IME, while swapping caps for more expensive caps will probably change the sound, but it doesn't always improve the sound. Don't throw the old caps away.
    yodog likes this.
  16. yodog

    yodog Active Member

    Roger that. I could see how the wires are supposed to go so Incase I end up just fixing that, I won’t have to open up both speakers....
    timind likes this.

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