Commercial Mini Monitors like the Galaxy Hot Spot cost upwards of $100, but these can be built for a lot less. I used 6 1/2" 8 ohm 100 watt PA speakers I got from Parts Express in a closeout for about $8 apiece. They don't sell these particular drivers anymore but they have several others that can be used in sizes from 5" to 6 1/2", at prices from $12 to about $20. Just make sure the drivers can handle a hefty amount of power and are designed for PA use. They even have the drivers for the commercial ones if you want to pay high dollar. The total cost of the two that I built was about $20, not including the stands.
Martin built the boxes for me out of scrap 3/4" plywood with four 1x1 internal braces. They are 6 1/2 x 8 1/2 x 8 1/2 inches in size. If you use a different size speaker just make the box proportional. You could probably use 1/2" wood for the box with no problem, just use lots of glue and screws and internal 1x1 bracing. In fact, I wish they had been built from 1/2 inch because they are pretty heavy, more on that in a minute.
The speaker hole baffle is glued and screwed to the internal braces. The grills are scrap 1/4 inch plywood covered with ordinary cloth I had laying around. I cut 4 small pieces of 1/2 inch plywood and glued them in the corners to raise the grill above the speaker and stapled Velcro on them to hold the grill. The jacks are the thick Switchcraft panel jacks so I didn't have to use a jack plate.
It was my intention to use mike stands to hold these but the problem was that they are so heavy all the swivel adapter ideas I came up with didn't work, they wouldn't hold the speaker in place. Eventually I took a tripod music stand and drilled out the rivets for the music holder part and then screwed the speaker to the brace that remained. It works great. Of course it bumps the cost because I had to buy another music stand to replace it but it works really well. I did mount the second one on a cast iron base mike stand without any swivel and it works good too. I just attached a female mike flange to the bottom of the monitor and screwed it onto the stand.
I built these primarily because ordinary floor monitors don't work very well for keyboard players and drummers. In a small band with minimalist gear it isn't practical to have side throw monitors either. With these you can aim it directly in the players face very close and they work very well.
These monitors work great, save a lot of space and are easy to transport. Build yourself some!!
- These have to be EQ'ed separately from a regular floor monitor that has tweeters because the response curve is very different. What I do is use a stereo equalizer and a stereo power amp and put the mini monitors on one side and the floor monitors on the other. I roll off all the low end under about 300hz. Right now I'm using a 200 watt per channel QSC power amp to drive these and have had no problems.
- These monitors are near field monitors. They have to be close to be effective. I tried using one on the floor as an experiment and it sucked. See the pics below about placement.