Vintage vs Modern speakers.

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by thomaskong, Oct 23, 2021.

  1. thomaskong

    thomaskong Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Washington State


    Overall, I found Altec A7 bi amped using Accuphase F25 active crossover sounds more natural with live scale soundstage (above video).

    I can easily switch back and forth between Sceana main tower and Altec treble horn depending on my mood and music.

    After I am back to WA state later July, I have high expectation about Pacific Audiofest

    I am curious whether any of the displayed system will give wide and deep 3D holographic soundstage like Scaena.

    [​IMG]
    AXPONA 2022 | Loudspeakers $30k and Up - The Absolute Sound
    AXPONA 2022 | Loudspeakers $30k and Up - After three years of self-imposed exile, it felt distinctly odd to go to a trade show—my first since Munich High End 2019.
    [​IMG] www.theabsolutesound.com

    TAS also give very favorable opinion to Scaena speaker.
     
    CatManDude likes this.
  2. RWBadley

    RWBadley A Long Strange Trip

    Location:
    Reno NV USA
    Indeed, unfortunate it seems there is always compromise.

    getting the soundstage may sacrifice live dynamics and so it goes…

    My Altec does many things very right, and what it does not can sometimes bother- but best not to dwell too much on that.

    Kampai, enjoy your family visit
     
    thomaskong likes this.
  3. imsjry

    imsjry Forum Resident

    Location:
    Neenah, WI
    Every month I read the Audio Advisor catalog and see the newest Dali, KLH, and MartinLogan speakers and wonder if my Chorus IIs are really as good as I think they are. This is a tough hobby because you’re always searching for the next best thing within your means.
     
    doctor fuse likes this.
  4. Ntotrar

    Ntotrar Forum Sciolist

    Location:
    Tri-Cities TN
    Don't second guess your ears. I still think my JBL 3678 are the best loudspeakers I have ever owned.
     
  5. thomaskong

    thomaskong Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Washington State

    Nice thing of Scanea 3.2 is that it does not sacrifice dynaimics when used with Altec A7 bass horn.

    This unusual hybrid configuration give the widest and deepest soundstage that I had experienced at home.

    I am anxious to be back to my home in Washington State this coming Sunday.
     
    Clonesteak likes this.
  6. Salectric

    Salectric Forum Resident

    Location:
    Maryland
    I had a chance to listen to the same speakers yesterday at DejaVu Audio driven by WE 124 amps. They sounded very good indeed especially the midrange which has exquisite detail and microdynamics. For my tastes, I would prefer a slightly warmer, richer sound but the bass was well integrated with the midrange. The highs were smooth and detailed although a little emphasized, a little too modern sounding, again for my tastes. I would be curious how a vintage horn tweeter would sound in place of the Fostex. Overall, however, a very nice sounding high-efficiency speaker in a conventional looking, room friendly cabinet.
     
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  7. Jim Hodgson

    Jim Hodgson Galvanically Isolated in Greenpoint

    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    @Larry I and/or @Salectric … can either of you fellas supply us with a photo? Wondering how this whole package is put together. (Thanks!)
     
  8. Larry I

    Larry I Forum Resident

    Location:
    Washington, D.C.
    I agree that the sound of the Deja Vu speaker was not as warm as he usually sets things up. There is also a touch of "hardness" to the sound. But, this is all actually a bit deliberate. Vu said that he voiced the speaker with a particular customer in mind. It utilizes modern Audio Note caps in the crossover instead of the vintage Aerovox or Sprague or Western Electric paper in oil caps that Vu usually uses which tend to have a warmer sound to them.

    This is the beauty of custom systems--they can be made to sound the way the customer wants. Vu built a cost is no object system for a customer that utilized some very expensive G.I.P. drivers (including $60k a pair tweeters), but the woofers were not the most expensive woofers G.I.P. offered, but a different Western Electric clone driver because the buyer preferred a different sound than what is offered by a Western Electric 4181 18" driver.
     
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  9. Salectric

    Salectric Forum Resident

    Location:
    Maryland
    Jim Hodgson likes this.
  10. Salectric

    Salectric Forum Resident

    Location:
    Maryland
    Jim Hodgson likes this.
  11. imsjry

    imsjry Forum Resident

    Location:
    Neenah, WI
    The big question for me is do I go down the rabbit hole? I'm sure if I went and auditioned brand new KLH or Logan speakers I would be blown away and question my entire system. Or just maybe I'd come away happier with my system. While it may be unanswerable, I'm not sure the original topic has been covered. Are modern speakers specification-wise objectively better sounding than well maintained, higher quality vintage stuff?
     
  12. CatManDude

    CatManDude Forum Revenant

    Location:
    Connecticut, USA
    ***UPDATE***

    So a few weeks ago, I picked up a can of Howards Walnut Restore-A-Finish and sparingly rubbed a bit of it onto one of the sun faded spots on my Heresy IV's. There was only a little improvement at first, so I shrugged and figured that's as good as it's gonna get.

    I checked them out again yesterday and lo and behold, the fade was gone.

    Before:
    [​IMG]

    After:
    [​IMG]

    God bless Howard. They make fantastic products that actually work.
     
  13. Ntotrar

    Ntotrar Forum Sciolist

    Location:
    Tri-Cities TN
    Looks good! Have you considered shades for the window or covers for the speakers?
     
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  14. avanti1960

    avanti1960 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Chicago metro, USA
    I heard these at AXPONA and the sound was quite competent and powerful in an extended full range capacity. I would recommend a larger room though- they sounded incoherent listening in the hotel room- the various frequency ranges were separated physically and coming from different directions. presumably listening from a greater distance would let them blend better.
     
    thomaskong likes this.
  15. CatManDude

    CatManDude Forum Revenant

    Location:
    Connecticut, USA
    I do have shades but they're open most of the day. I live in an old converted factory with those huge old factory windows. They let tons of sun in, which is great, but wreak havoc with wood surfaces. I really don't mind the fade if it's even. My problem was that I had something sitting on the speaker that caused the wood to fade unevenly. With that said, I'm in the process of moving in with my fiancée. I've already carved out a nice shady spot for them in her house. :D
     
    Ntotrar likes this.
  16. thomaskong

    thomaskong Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Washington State
  17. doctor fuse

    doctor fuse Forum Resident

    Vintage. Unless you like paying 50X more for the same sound.
     
    BrentB, SandAndGlass and thomaskong like this.
  18. Zoroastra

    Zoroastra Forum Resident

    I have changed the crossovers on my Altec A7's and invite comments.
    The first YouTube video is with stock (but rebuilt) Altec crossovers, the second YouTube video (on the next message as this site won't allow me to put two together) is the same song with Pete Riggle (Hiraga style) crossovers:

     
  19. Zoroastra

    Zoroastra Forum Resident

    Now, with the Hiraga style crossovers:

     
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  20. RWBadley

    RWBadley A Long Strange Trip

    Location:
    Reno NV USA
    The new crossovers sound better to me. Less shrill highs and a more full midrange/ bass
     
  21. Tim Irvine

    Tim Irvine Forum Resident

    Location:
    Austin, Texas
    I have concluded that such comparisons will not reveal the real nature of either speaker, but it will highlight some of the obvious differences, especially differences of voice of the speakers. It is not a reliable way to make selections, but it may have some validity as a way to narrow a search.
     
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  22. Zoroastra

    Zoroastra Forum Resident

    real life even more so (better bass, less shrill, better localisation within sound stage, etc.), but iPhone 8 microphone not so good at delineating these things. In that way Tim Irvine has a point (though it wasn't addressed specifically to me), that comparisons (same song, system with only one change being compared) will not reveal the real nature ... but will highlight some of the obvious differences...
     
  23. SandAndGlass

    SandAndGlass Twilight Forum Resident

    With Altec's and other vintage horn speakers, crossovers are everything!
     
  24. P3ESRXD

    P3ESRXD Arnaud, still enjoying...with what I have

    Location:
    Montpellier France
  25. Zoroastra

    Zoroastra Forum Resident

    One thing I need to add. Someone on another thread asked me if I made any other changes to my A7’s and I did.

    When I changed the crossovers I simply cut the wires to the stock Altec crossovers (which are mounted to a thin wooden plate and projecting into the speaker cabinets through holes in the back panel) and wired the bass speaker with Duelund Dual DCA16GA tinned stranded copper in cotton and oil (which help with that vintage sound, and fit the Altec speaker clips without the need to trim) to the Riggle crossovers which sit atop the bass cabs.

    When I first played a D2D (gypsy jazz) record that goes real deep with a stand up bass, the old crossover mounted in the back panel vibrated terribly. So a friend who does kitchen fittings built me two new reinforced back panels, without the old crossovers, for these bass cabinets and that eliminated the buzz. The Altec’s are not known for doing deep bass well, and mine loose control of the deepest notes (they become wooly) which apparently is helped by reducing the bass reflex port area from the stock 375 square inches, to 220 square inches (which I will probably do), or by adding sub-woofers (unlikely to do).

    I am also considering changing my metal segmented treble horns for a pair made of wood with better horn design, made by Marcus Klug. At worst they at least remove the metal bug screen in the throat of these Altec versions.
     

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