Custom Speaker Stands
Sometime around August of 2021 I decided it was time to upgrade my micro home studio and add a proper pair of monitors. I ultimately decided on a pair of RP7 ROKIT G4’s near field monitors as they fit my budget, were powered, and of moderate size to fit well on my desk. After 6 or so months of use I’m still really happy with them. They’ve got more than enough power and produce a clear and balanced sound that has helped me get my mixes dialed in more quickly than with my old setup.
(picture from krkmusic.com)
The nagging problem
There was just one little thing bugging me… I’d setup my monitors directly on top of my desk, and I found that they were about 5 or so inches too low for ‘optimal’ listening… According to the manual, the mid point of the speaker between the the woofer and tweeter (the acoustic axis point) should be located at ear level when listening. I tried propping them up with some foam blocks, but that didn’t really raise them high enough, plus the blocks were a bit too big and took up more valuable desk space. Something must be done.
A search for solutions
I looked in the usual on-line sources for some speaker stands but all I could find were things that were awkwardly large or super expensive… And that’s when the thought hit me, why not try to design and print something? I just happened to have picked up some bright orange PETG filament and a new all-metal hot-end for the 3D printer that I hadn’t had a chance to use yet - here’s a brilliant opportunity!
Taking a look at the dimensions of the speaker, I knew I was going to need to be a bit clever with the stand design if I wanted to be able to print it on my 220mm (8.66 inch) square print bed. After playing around with a few ideas I settled on a design and created a prototype in Fusion360. It consists of 3 parts - 2 legs that form the stand, and one bracket in the front to hold both legs together and provide some stability.
The Rokit 7’s have a dimension of 8.86 inches wide x 11.19 inches deep and weigh in at 16.76lbs. With the assembled stand dimensions of 8.6in wide x 8.6in deep x 5in high, my main concern was around the overall strength of the material, and if it would be sturdy enough to safely support a 17 pound monitor.
Working with PETG
As it was my first time working with PETG, it took me a few iterations to get the printer temperatures dialed in. For my first print I had the nozzle temp set a little too low which had the unfortunate side effect of wall de-lamination, not exactly what you want when it’s supposed to support something heavy! The interesting thing is that the stand looked good as it was printing! Only after the 10 hour print completed and I took it off the bed was it apparent something wasn’t quite right! I also had some challenges with the infill pattern that was being used which resulted in small gaps in certain areas of the model, again not something you want if you want something sturdy… After a few more experiments on a smaller test object, I got something that looked and felt solid…
After about 20+ hours, here’s how the stand came out and how it looks next to my Rokit 7:
Here’s the moment of truth, will it support the Rokit 7?? YES!
I’m really happy with how they turned out, after getting my print temperatures and infill settings dialed in the print quality came out really good. The Rokit 7’s have soft padding that covers the entire bottom of the speaker which provides some good cushion and vibration dampening while on the stand. I’m sure this flies in the face of audio purists - of which I’m not, so long as there’s no vibration or rattling going on! I may consider placing some thin foam strips on the bottom of the stand at some point…
The stands support the speaker weight without issue, the over all dimensions fit together really well, and they raise the speakers up so that the acoustic axis is directly at my ear level. Perfect! In Orange they look pretty cool too, so all in all I consider this a very successful project.
I’m considering selling them as I hadn’t really seen a design quite like it on the market… I think others may like them too! Let me know what you think!