BMR DIY kit cabinet news

Swerd

Swerd

Audioholic Spartan
For those who are interested in the often mentioned BMR DIY Kit, the parts kit for these wonderful sounding speakers has been available at Meniscus Audio.

Now, there is some news about cabinets for the BMR. Dennis Murphy says he thinks he’s ironed things out with the BMR DIY cabinet kits. These kits are sold as flat-pack kits. They require assembly.
  • A Baltic birch flat-pack kit, with no imperfections, will cost $169 for each cabinet.

  • A flat-pack kit, suitable for painting or veneering (there will be some football shaped patches) will cost $149 each.

  • In both kits, a front baffle with 3/4" rounded over edges is available for an additional $15 each.
The flat-packs will have butt joints. Leland says mitered edges cause too many fit problems for people without the proper clamps, etc. So that means there will be exposed ply on the edges. Some people like that look, others don't. But for the next two months or so, that will be the only option.

However--Leland will be experimenting with a new routing process that will leave no exposed ply edges. If it works out, you will be able to get either the flat-packs or an assembled cabinet with only birch veneer showing. That will definitely cost more, but Dennis says he won't know just how much until Leland actually builds a cabinet and can see how much extra labor is involved. Leland will start accepting orders next week. Dennis says he'll get general info on the kit up on his web site over the next few days.

You can see Leland's website here: https://www.speakerhardware.com/
 
Last edited:
ryanosaur

ryanosaur

Audioholic Ninja
Yup, this is really good news, and I hope it works out well. The BMRs are fantastic speakers and making them more readily available to people is a great gift!

I honestly could have been ecstatically happy had I ordered 7 of these instead of just the three I did! In a small to medium sized room, they are more than sufficient to match tower speakers at twice Dennis' original price point, and frankly they outperform speakers much more expensive still.
To be fair, I am still incredibly grateful to call a pair of Phil 3s mine, and would not give them up if I had it to do over again... but the BMRs are that good!
 
NINaudio

NINaudio

Audioholic General
I may look to these for a surround speaker upgrade at some point down the line. Thanks for the info!
 
Swerd

Swerd

Audioholic Spartan
I may look to these for a surround speaker upgrade at some point down the line. Thanks for the info!
Personally, I think it would be a waste to use these excellent speakers for surround sound channels. They are easily worthy of front left & right channel use, or as an outstanding 2-channel audio only system. See what ryanosaur says above.

Edit: When I listen to music, I most often use only 2 channels. I tend to use 5 channels for movies, Netfllix, TV. Obviously, others have different preferences about this.
 
Last edited:
NINaudio

NINaudio

Audioholic General
Personally, I think it would be a waste to use these excellent speakers for surround sound channels. They are easily worthy of front left & right channel use, or as an outstanding 2-channel audio only system. See what ryanosaur says above.
I'm getting Song 3's for my front 3, so it would be more about having similar quality speakers all around. As well as giving me an intro into building something more complex than my sub box.
 
KEW

KEW

Audioholic Overlord
I may look to these for a surround speaker upgrade at some point down the line. Thanks for the info!
Personally, I think it would be a waste to use these excellent speakers for surround sound channels. They are easily worthy of front left & right channel use, or as an outstanding 2-channel audio only system. See what ryanosaur says above.
This conversation does beg the question:
Didn't @D Murphy do a center channel mod with a BMR laid on its side? Was it simply rotating the ribbon 90 degrees (something we could do when assembling the speaker)? If so, that would be ideal! @ryanosaur , don't you have something like this for your center?
Just looking ahead to see if there is a reasonable option for people wanting to have a matched front 3 for their HT/Audio system.
Alternately, perhaps there is a commonly available (economical) speaker to use for people for whom music reigns supreme, but still want to have a reasonable timbre match for a HT center. I know the NHT SuperZeros have been recommended as an economical surround, but assume something a bit larger would be recommended for a center!
 
Last edited:
ryanosaur

ryanosaur

Audioholic Ninja
Randomly...

The center BMR I have is a standard BMR with the tweeter rotated 90º. I did confirm this between conversations and inspection of the XO. I am planning to get mine realigned upright as I get some work on my room done.

I've been on record saying this before: I planned my setup around the goal of getting into multi-channel audio, mostly. I'm usually around 95% music... sometimes that varies, and to be fair, I don't have an extensive collection of such music, but it is growing nonetheless. Therefore I wanted my 5 main channels to match as closely as possible and acheived this through close matching of Raal Tweeter and 'Planar' mids (the BMR driver of course operating as a hybrid piston and planar), and the matching amplification for all 5 of those channels....
Anyway, all of this is to say that they do very well for me in my rig. They were excellent speakers up front, and they are excellent speakers on my sides.
Having not heard the Song3s, I can only surmise that Dennis' voicing will still be a prominent trait and the BMRs would be a solution for matching to them in that situation. They are large for that purpose, but so are most worthy stand mounts (I would seldom recommend one go with the smaller offering if given an opportunity for a larger (think Monitor Audio Silver 100 over Silver 50, for example)).

I fully support the idea of building a pair of BMRs if for no other reason than experimenting with a more complex build. :)

I think when the rubber hits the road, I'd put a little more value on starting a separate system with those DIY BMRs and putting matching Supercharged Song Surrounds on that main system. But that's just me. I don't mind the mis-matched appearance in my private room. Part of my DIY aspiration is to build a matching system for the greatroom. By the time I get to the point of needing to "upgrade" my private rig, I will make it matching, too. :D

Just looking ahead to see if there is a reasonable option for people wanting to have a matched front 3 for their HT/Audio system.
I've thought about reaching out to Meniscus to see if they would sell a single BMR kit so I could experiment with a single Rear Center (DTS 5.1 doesn't use a Front Center, rather a Rear Center... DTS Neural parses that signal to the Rear Surrounds which works well enough, but c'mon... I wanna nerd out and see what it's like. ;)).

Edit: When I listen to music, I most often use only 2 channels. I tend to use 5 channels for movies, Netfllix, TV. Obviously, others have different preferences about this.
I've had some enjoyable success using the DTS Neural upmixer with electronica. Have not enjoyed it with more traditional Rock, Jazz or Art (Orchestral/Chamber) music (which I keep in 2.1 or Pure Direct).
 
Last edited:
ryanosaur

ryanosaur

Audioholic Ninja
This conversation does beg the question:
Didn't @D Murphy do a center channel mod with a BMR laid on its side? Was it simply rotating the ribbon 90 degrees (something we could do when assembling the speaker)? If so, that would be ideal! @ryanosaur , don't you have something like this for your center?
Just looking ahead to see if there is a reasonable option for people wanting to have a matched front 3 for their HT/Audio system.
Alternately, perhaps there is a commonly available (economical) speaker to use for people for whom music reigns supreme, but still want to have a reasonable timbre match for a HT center. I know the NHT SuperZeros have been recommended as an economical surround, but assume something a bit larger would be recommended for a center!
As an aside and from that other site, I believe there has been discussion and work on a Dennis Murphy BMR Center (W/T-M/W) which, IIRC, he said would be offered through Salk Sound.
(Not to be confused with a custom BMR center that another member of our fora communities commisioned through Rick Craig/Selah Audio while Dennis was recovering.)
 
D

D Murphy

Junior Audioholic
This conversation does beg the question:
Didn't @D Murphy do a center channel mod with a BMR laid on its side? Was it simply rotating the ribbon 90 degrees (something we could do when assembling the speaker)? If so, that would be ideal! @ryanosaur , don't you have something like this for your center?
Just looking ahead to see if there is a reasonable option for people wanting to have a matched front 3 for their HT/Audio system.
Alternately, perhaps there is a commonly available (economical) speaker to use for people for whom music reigns supreme, but still want to have a reasonable timbre match for a HT center. I know the NHT SuperZeros have been recommended as an economical surround, but assume something a bit larger would be recommended for a center!
The BMR works fine as a center either upright or on its side with the tweeter rotated. The thru-hole for the tweeter is just a plain circle, so rotating it is a trivial task. I think Meniscus Mark would be willing to sell a single kit, and I know Leland will sell single flat packs or cabinets--his pricing is per-unit.
 
D

D Murphy

Junior Audioholic
For those who are interested in the often mentioned BMR DIY Kit, the parts kit for these wonderful sounding speakers has been available at Meniscus Audio.

Now, there is some news about cabinets for the BMR. Dennis Murphy says he thinks he’s ironed things out with the BMR DIY cabinet kits. These kits are sold as flat-pack kits. They require assembly.
  • A Baltic birch flat-pack kit, with no imperfections, will cost $169 for each cabinet.

  • A flat-pack kit, suitable for painting or veneering (there will be some football shaped patches) will cost $149 each.

  • In both kits, a front baffle with 3/4" rounded over edges is available for an additional $15 each.
The flat-packs will have butt joints. Leland says mitered edges cause too many fit problems for people without the proper clamps, etc. So that means there will be exposed ply on the edges. Some people like that look, others don't. But for the next two months or so, that will be the only option.

However--Leland will be experimenting with a new routing process that will leave no exposed ply edges. If it works out, you will be able to get either the flat-packs or an assembled cabinet with only birch veneer showing. That will definitely cost more, but Dennis says he won't know just how much until Leland actually builds a cabinet and can see how much extra labor is involved. Leland will start accepting orders next week. Dennis says he'll get general info on the kit up on his web site over the next few days.

You can see Leland's website here: https://www.speakerhardware.com/
The flat packs are ready for orders. Here's a link to the relevant page, which includes a nice video showing the designer assembling a flat pack and giving useful advice. They were designed to simplify the assembly process as much as possible. You can also get the cabinets already assembled, but you'll save a good bit of cash by doing it yourself. https://www.speakerhardware.com/philharmonic-bmr-flat-pack.php
 
ryanosaur

ryanosaur

Audioholic Ninja
The flat packs are ready for orders. Here's a link to the relevant page, which includes a nice video showing the designer assembling a flat pack and giving useful advice. They were designed to simplify the assembly process as much as possible. You can also get the cabinets already assembled, but you'll save a good bit of cash by doing it yourself. https://www.speakerhardware.com/philharmonic-bmr-flat-pack.php
Very exciting, Dennis!!! Thank you for making this super accessible again. It really is too good of a speaker to lose.

:)
 
Swerd

Swerd

Audioholic Spartan
I just watched the video. It looks well designed, with pocket screws to hold panels at right angles without fail during assembly, and biscuits for wood gluing.
 
KEW

KEW

Audioholic Overlord
So, as of today, the total cost is as follows:
Pair of speaker kits from Meniscus Audio is $1085.01. (I chose full kit, assembled cross-over, and then went for the least expensive option for all of the component choices - that is not my recommendation, I just wanted to establish some estimate of the pricing)
Flat pack is $194.95 X 2 = $389.90 (selected clear panel and one additional cut for terminal plate on the back).
That puts total cost at $1474.91/pr!
For fully assembled BMR's:
Salk has Black or White for $2395
Salk has standard grains for $2595
Salk has custom grain/dye/finished for $???? (depending on your choices)
Nicely done, Dennis! I know how you like to keep the price as low as you can for the person who is strapped for cash but values high fidelity (I have referred to you as the "Johnny Appleseed" of quality sound). This gives options for people depending on the size of their wallet and what they value!
$900 is a nice savings for the person who values $900 more than the time and effort to build, assemble, and finish (which is not likely to meet Salk's finish capability for the typical DIY/hobbiest).

For a woodgrain finish, the Leland (flat pack guy) suggests General Finishes Gel Water or Oil Stains.
For anyone interested in a solid color, you might consider Milk Paint as an interesting and practical option! It is probably the oldest type of paint used for furniture, very durable, has a novel array of colors (while being the colors of your great-great-great-grandparents painted stools, etc!) and, most importantly, simple to apply!
 
Last edited:
D

D Murphy

Junior Audioholic
So, as of today, the total cost is as follows:
Pair of speaker kits from Meniscus Audio is $1085.01. (I chose full kit, assembled cross-over, and then went for the least expensive option for all of the component choices - that is not my recommendation, I just wanted to establish some estimate of the pricing)
Flat pack is $194.95 X 2 = $389.90 (selected clear panel and one additional cut for terminal plate on the back).
That puts total cost at $1474.91/pr!
For fully assembled BMR's:
Salk has Black or White for $2395
Salk has standard grains for $2595
Salk has custom grain/dye/finished for $???? (depending on your choices)
Nicely done, Dennis! I know how you like to keep the price as low as you can for the person who is strapped for cash but values high fidelity (I have referred to you as the "Johnny Appleseed" of quality speakers). This gives options for people depending on the size of their wallet and what they value!
$900 is a nice savings for the person who values $900 more than the time and effort to build, assemble, and finish (which is not likely to meet Salk's finish capability for the typical DIY/hobbiest).

For a woodgrain finish, the Leland (flat pack guy) suggests General Finishes Gel Water or Oil Stains.
For anyone interested in a solid color, you might consider Milk Paint as an interesting and practical option! It is probably the oldest type of paint used for furniture, very durable, has a novel array of colors (while being the colors of your great-great-great-grandparents painted stools, etc!) and, most importantly, simple to apply!
Thanks for the calculations and nice words. There have been a lot of questions about what grade components you get with the basic kit with no upgrades, and I'm going to talk with Meniscus Mark tomorrow and get that clarified.
 
KEW

KEW

Audioholic Overlord
Thanks for the calculations and nice words. There have been a lot of questions about what grade components you get with the basic kit with no upgrades, and I'm going to talk with Meniscus Mark tomorrow and get that clarified.
Yeah, happily, I already have my BMR's, but if I didn't, being confronted with the component upgrade options and the way you have to chose before you can put them in the cart acts as an "analysis paralysis" barrier. It is quite confusing because there is an additional price associated with each choice where I would think there would be a no cost choice included in the basic kit!
They could streamline the process quite a bit (for those of us that know you) by having a "Designer's choice" option based on your recommendations. It would also simplify how we could recommend this speaker without having to declare each specific option. However, these upgrades may be a significant profit source for Meniscus Audio and they may be reluctant to go this route.
 
Swerd

Swerd

Audioholic Spartan
Yeah, happily, I already have my BMR's, but if I didn't, being confronted with the component upgrade options and the way you have to chose before you can put them in the cart acts as an "analysis paralysis" barrier. It is quite confusing because there is an additional price associated with each choice where I would think there would be a no cost choice included in the basic kit!
They could streamline the process quite a bit (for those of us that know you) by having a "Designer's choice" option based on your recommendations. It would also simplify how we could recommend this speaker without having to declare each specific option. However, these upgrades may be a significant profit source for Meniscus Audio and they may be reluctant to go this route.
I agree it was confusing. So did Dennis. Earlier today, he had this to say:

"OK--I spoke with Meniscus Mark. He's going to redo the BMR page to make it clear what you get in the basic kit and how much it will cost. For some reason, Mark thought it would be clear that the $917 kit doesn't include tweeter capacitors or resistors, even though Lynk resistors are listed as included at the bottom of the page, but also listed as an upgrade."​
"I told him to make it clear exactly what the basic kit includes. List all standard caps and resistors and specify what type or brand they are, and then list upgrades separately. That means the basic kit will cost more than $917, which I'm not happy about. And I forgot to ask him what brands of woofer and midrange caps and resistors are included in the basic kit, if any. Hopefully all of that will be clear when he cleans up the BMR page."​

I think this means the basic price for a pair of BMR kits, including drivers and all crossover parts becomes $928.98. If correct, this means each crossover has 3 air core inductors, two iron or steel laminate core inductors, six Audyn Q4 caps, three 10W Lynk metal oxide resistors, plus one 25W Zisters aluminum-jacketed resistor – as shown below:
Meniscus BMR xo parts.png


The options listed on the web page for more expensive capacitors & resistors are meant for the tweeter circuit only.

I'm going to wait to see what the modified page looks like.
 
Last edited:
Swerd

Swerd

Audioholic Spartan
The newly modified BMR DIY kit web page is now up. Note that there are small changes in some prices.

It clearly says that the standard Bare Bones kit or Full Kit prices include Audyn Q4 capacitors and sand cast resistors for the tweeters at no extra cost. All other choices for tweeter capacitors and resistors cost extra.

Lower down on the page, it clearly states just what is included in the Bare Bone kit, and in the optional Full Kit, for $39.65 extra.
 
KEW

KEW

Audioholic Overlord
The newly modified BMR DIY kit web page is now up. Note that there are small changes in some prices.

It clearly says that the standard Bare Bones kit or Full Kit prices include Audyn Q4 capacitors and sand cast resistors for the tweeters at no extra cost. All other choices for tweeter capacitors and resistors cost extra.

Lower down on the page, it clearly states just what is included in the Bare Bone kit, and in the optional Full Kit, for $39.65 extra.
Can you make suggestions as to which options are worth considering for those less knowledgeable about these components (like me)!
I already have a pair, but would like to be able to steer others in an informed way!
 
Swerd

Swerd

Audioholic Spartan
Can you make suggestions as to which options are worth considering for those less knowledgeable about these components (like me)!
I already have a pair, but would like to be able to steer others in an informed way!
Yes, straight from the Designer Himself:
  • Choose the least expensive metallized polypropylene capacitors, such as Audyn Q4. Their price is similar to Parts Express house brand caps. More expensive capacitors will not result in audible differences, much less audible improvements.
  • Avoid choosing expensive resistors for the same reason as for capacitors. Choose either the Sand Cast or Lynk Metal Oxide resistors (for $0.96 more).
In the unpredictable near future (later this spring or early summer), I will build a pair using the flat pack cabinets. I will order the optional Full Kit from Meniscus Audio, with Audyn Q4 caps and Lynk resistors, and I'll assemble the crossover on the the boards they provide.

The video showing assembly of the flat pack cabinet is good, but my goal is to write a photo-illustrated guide for the DIY novice including cabinet assembly, crossover assembly, and wiring everything together.
 
ryanosaur

ryanosaur

Audioholic Ninja
Yes, straight from the Designer Himself:
  • Choose the least expensive metallized polypropylene capacitors, such as Audyn Q4. Their price is similar to Parts Express house brand caps. More expensive capacitors will not result in audible differences, much less audible improvements.
  • Avoid choosing expensive resistors for the same reason as for capacitors. Choose either the Sand Cast or Lynk Metal Oxide resistors (for $0.96 more).
In the unpredictable near future (later this spring or early summer), I will build a pair using the flat pack cabinets. I will order the optional Full Kit from Meniscus Audio, with Audyn Q4 caps and Lynk resistors, and I'll assemble the crossover on the the boards they provide.

The video showing assembly of the flat pack cabinet is good, but my goal is to write a photo-illustrated guide for the DIY novice including cabinet assembly, crossover assembly, and wiring everything together.
Supercool... I enjoyed the previous build report you did! :)

I concur with the assessment of the XO parts, too. Enough evidence out there that the parts themselves don't matter so much as getting the design right.
 

newsletter
  • RBHsound.com
  • BlueJeansCable.com
  • SVS Sound Subwoofers
  • Experience the Martin Logan Montis
Top