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b1daly

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  1. b1daly

    ADS L1590

    Very interesting discussion here. I thought I would pipe up with a comment on the old tweeters/ferrofluid issue. I’ve had Richard So rebuild multiple pairs, and the improvement is palpable. I’m a firm believer in home audio that if it sounds good it is good. In my case I was trying to bring my Dads old L1290 back to life, and I was hearing them as sharper, almost brittle, spitty tweeters than I remembered them from 35 years ago. I have 4 pairs of ADS speakers, and so far all of the tweeters were problematic. They weren’t quieter, but instead had a “spikier” sound with certain frequencies distorting. It’s not like they were unlistenable, but on modern production with a lot of high frequencies they just weren’t right. Right now I have two head scratchers: the 1290s sound pretty good, but the bass seems untight, sort of underfined, not punchy I actually have two pair of 1290s and they both sound like this. But it just doesn’t seem right. I’m experimenting with some high quality parametric EQs and also some bi-amping to see if I can tighten this up. I’m also pull out some slight edge in the high mids . Just by ear, I sweep the frequencies until I hear a some ringing then notch it out. This is a new approach but I think it has huge potential to dramatically improve some of these older speakers, which are already quite excellent
  2. FOllowing up for anyone interested. I had the tweeters and midrange for the 1290s rebuilt by Richard So. The result was a vastly improved sound. The harshness is gone from tweeters, and some from midrange too. They sound “smoother” than I ever remember them. I have listed to a range of music and it’s very enjoyable.
  3. It’s been a while since I posted this, just wanted follow up and thank the helpful commenters! i haven’t done anything with these speakers, but I just won a bid on that auction site for another pair of L1290s that also come with a complete set of extra drivers. (Haven’t told my wife yet, ha ha.) So at least if I decide to do the Richard So route, or experiment with replacing the ferrofluid I will have a reference. Ill post some results if I have anything to report.
  4. Hi All, this is my first post here! I've inherited my Dad's old L1290s (which I loved back in the day). They still sound pretty great, but I'm questioning the high frequencies. They seem a little "harsher" than I remember them being, from 30 years ago! I do remember they were quite bright when they were new, though. What I'm noticing, is that on recordings with any kind of hyped, exaggerated highs, the tweeter can almost sound distorted...not quite distorted, but it's like I can hear it ringing out, on its own, as if is not integrated with other drivers, or is too loud or something. On smooth recordings, for example the new Radiohead record "A Moon Shaped Pool," they sound fantastic. I've been scanning the forums for any kind of consensus on when/whether the Richard So rebuilds are worth it. For a lot of folks who report a big difference, it seems like they are reporting that the old driver sounded muffled, or obviously distorted. Others who had drivers rebuilt that were just old, report a modest improvement, if any (not a "night and day difference" is often the term used). The reason I don't take that as strong confirmation is because placebo effects are rampant in audio, especially without a comparison close in time. (Even those are highly suspect, IMO, do the vicissitudes of critical listening.) As I am somewhat obsessive, I'm having a hard time deciding what to do...as I listen, if I hear something that sounds harsh, it starts to bug me, almost prevents me from enjoying my listening. One interesting aspect of these speakers: I'm a music producer/recording engineer. One of the hardest things to get right is the high frequency response. Often, my mixes that sound perfect in my studio, will not be bright enough compared to commercial recordings. However, on the L1290s, my mixes sound as I expect. The brightening done in mastering is often pretty drastic, and can easily introduce distortions. So I wonder if part of what I am hearing is the 1290s simply revealing the distortion that is truly present in the recording. Such high frequency distortion is a very challenging signal for a speaker to reproduce in a flattering way. Some speakers are more "forgiving." Anyway, I know it's been talked to death. I just wish I could figure out a way to really test with the tweeters and mids on these 1290s were actually in need of any repair. Thanks for reading! I'd love to hear any other comments on this subject... Brian
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