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Found 13 results

  1. Hi all! I am currently restoring a pair of AR-5 speakers and would like to thank all of you for the information you have shared on this site. I have a question regarding the insulation within the units I acquired. Please note the speakers are within 2 serial numbers of each other and date stamp on one woofer is April 4th, 1973. I suspect this speaker is completely original. The other speaker appears to have a replacement woofer with a PN 200004-2, which from my research should be ok. My primary question has to do with the insulation. The one I suspect is original was completely filled with the pieced fiberglass insulation. The unit with the replacement woofer only had insulation behind the woofer and covering the crossover with nothing behind the tweeter and mid-range. Is it possible the unit with replacement woofer requires less insulation or did the individual replacing the woofer skimp on the amount of insulation? I was thinking about adding, in both speakers, fiberglass insulation batting acquired from local department store behind the tweeter/mid-range and the original batting behind the woofers. I would appreciate your thoughts on what I should do for insulation. Thanks in advance!
  2. This topic was spawned from the AR forum discussion of Dome Mids vs Cones. Let me say first of all that I prefer AR 12 inch speaker systems over others because they have the sound qualities I like already designed into them which in turn makes them easier to set up for my listening preferences. However there are at least four problems with owning 12 inch ARs : The parts supply is diminishing The price is climbing for complete functioning units as well as good DIY candidates Shipping, which is almost always required, risks damage to unblemished cabinet corners or drivers that is almost intolerable, regardless of refund, if one factors in the lost opportunity The paranoia from imagining having to rebuild by sound systems if I lost all of my ARs through some disastrous event, assuming I live through it. Because well designed speakers were not exclusive to AR, I have come to believe that the AR sound could be substantially duplicated with readily available high quality bookshelf speakers having certain characteristics and I have placed this thread in the BA section because from experience I know that BA produced many high quality two way speakers. I own a pair of A40s and CR65s that I purchased new which, within their limits, are good little speakers. There are hundreds of pairs of BA 2 ways for sale on the used market any time you choose to look. I believe what I want to do could be achieved relatively inexpensively with used BA bookshelf speakers but I don't know which ones would make the best candidates to meet my requirements, which are as follows: Objective: Create a system that will substantially duplicate the full range stereo sound of a Classic or ADD AR 12 inch speaker. Assumptions: Equalizer will be used Dual Subwoofers - one for each channel Mirrored pairs of two way bookshelf speakers positioned such that they produce a uniform soundfield covering at least a 90 degree angle per stereo channel. Mirrored triplets would be ok if it really can't be done with pairs. Sufficient, quality watts will be available. Question: Does anyone here have a well informed opinion about which Boston Acoustics two ways would be the best candidates for use in this project which, by the way, is real. Note: I know there are other good 2 way brands available but please limit this to Boston Acoustics because they are so numerous. Also, I have stated the problem as clearly as I know how given that I am not an engineer of any kind. Please feel free to elaborate, qualify or extend but please try to be constructive. This thread topic originated in a post I made in the BA forum. I have chosen to continue it in the mods and tweaks forum for the following reasons: 1. The original idea was a failure because of several issues which all stemmed from two main problems, a. Subwoofer performance vs Cost b. The difficulty of integrating the Subs with satellites yielding musicality equal to an AR12” 3 way speaker. 2. On a whim. I decided to salvage what was left and see what would happen if I used an AR58s as the bass module for each side. 3. IMO this topic is now about something other than AR or BA speakers alone. If you can imagine two AR3ts angled and sitting atop an AR3 then you can visualize a 12” LST2, which BTW never existed for sale. As I write this, I am listening to a similar configuration , only in this case I am using BA CR65s atop a AR58s pair. My original target with subs and satellites was to duplicate the 58s sound but, as I said, that was failure. What I am hearing now, and for the last five days, is easily equivalent to AR9s except in the very deepest base i.e. 32hz range. I don’t see why this can’t be done with any AR12” flat side woofer system and two amps that can each carry a four ohm load. I already had the amps and 1 equalizer. The additional total cost for used equipment was about $150 which purchased 4 BA CR65s and an equalizer. Edit: IMO perfect candidates are the non bi-ampable models AR58s, AR58b, AR11, AR915, AR91, and maybe AR78 and 98. You could use a biampable model but If you separate the woofers by removing the straps you lose the ability to easily get the volume in balance between the woofers and the mids. The AR mid is your reference for setting the satellite output because the AR mid is already engineered to balance with the woofer output at ZERO attenuation. Don't decouple the woofer if you use a bi-ampable AR. Taking the system to the LST level will require an amp that can carry a 2 ohm load and another pair of BA speakers. I have been listening and comparing this arrangement to 9s and 3as all week using high dynamic, full range classical recordings and demanding non-classical. It does take some dialing in but it really works. Fearing I would come off sounding like just another hi fi nut I almost did not post but this is so doable at a bargain price I decided to share. I have received advice and tips from a few members on this forum that lead me to this but I did not drop your names in case you prefer to remain unconnected with this mess. Aadams
  3. I have managed to secure a pair of AR-5's. They were one owner speakers. On initial inspection, they seem to be quite good. The cabinets are very nice, as is the grill cloth. The woofers and mids work, I'm not sure about the tweeters. I need to do the battery check on them. The controls are iffy, no surprise there. The woofer surrounds are completely shot, also no surprise. One has holes in it, the other is solid but very fragile. I'll hook that speaker up and give it an extended listen before I start restoration on it. I ordered and received a refoam kit from Vintage AR. I hooked the "good woofer" AR5 up to my "classic good system" and have listened to it for about an hour with it on the right and one of my AR2ax's on the left. My impressions are what @stupidhead's were in his comparison video. First, the difference in efficiency is huge. Not small! Second, it doesn't sound significantly different from the 2ax. It is leaner and a little cleaner through the mids, the highs I'm not sure, because I'm not convinced the tweeter is working. The woofer sounds exactly like the 2ax. However, there is punchiness through the upper bass that 2ax tends to slur. It's that midrange! Overall, the sound of it is very, very similar to the 2ax. The tonal balance is just about identical. The controls are super dirty, and fooling with them causes distortion and cutouts. I know that midrange is fragile, so I'm not going to mess around any more until I restore the speakers. The other speaker has a bad woofer. I removed it because the surround had holes in it, and I didn't want to do anything other than ensure it worked. The surround easily pealed off, which was good. But, not so good was that the voice coil former has separated from the spider most of the way around. I'm going to have to figure out how to fix that. Both speakers seem to be much newer than my 2ax's. There was a styrofoam gasket behind the woofers in both, and each cabinet had a small serial number/ID tag on the back. There was no obvious sign that they'd previously been repaired, although there was a really sticky substance on the surrounds of the woofers. I don't know if they came that way or they'd been treated later. The grill cloths had been previously removed, and it was done well. Based on that, I tend to think they've been molested some how. I'm going to get started this weekend on the restoration. I've got to get the woofers refoamed. Hopefully I only need to re-glue one voice coil former! I have to figure out how to do that. While they're open, the controls need cleaning and the caps will be replaced (unless they already have been, I don't know yet). The tweeters may have to be sent out for repair, that's undetermined yet. I will keep you all appraised!
  4. Boston Acoustics CR 75 vs AR 5 Short version: Above 200hz the BA CR75 is easily the equal of the AR5 in clarity and if you are willing to sit in the small sweet spot it can completely match the AR5 in sound quality above 200hz. This last qualifying statement, re: sweet spot, is also true for the AR2ax, IMO and I'm guessing probably a large number of modern, two way bookshelf speakers as well. Long version: Manufactured in the early 2000s, the BA CR75 is a ported two-way bookshelf speaker with a 6.5 inch woofer and 1” dome tweeter. Crossover point is 2500hz, with frequency response stated at 52-20Khz but no 3db down point specified. Sensitivity is 89db at 1 watt. This comparison with the AR5 is for performance at frequencies above 200hz. In this setup both speakers were sitting adjacent at the same height, connected on a switch as “tops” for a common bass system. The bass performance was identical for both systems and was not a factor in this evaluation. The speakers were volume equalized. They were also frequency balance equalized to as close as convenient but because the CR75s were temporary, I was not willing make larger equalizer adjustments to subdue its extra bit of brightness, in the voice spectrum, to make it exactly match the AR5. Listening distance was 4 to 8 feet. All electronics and source material were identical. Music used was pop/jazz vocals both studio and live and symphony orchestra recordings. On pop and jazz, studio recordings, the sound of the speakers were practically identical after the switch. I forgot which speaker I was hearing more than once. On live recordings at large venues, whether jazz or symphonic, the diffuse and expansive sound of the AR5 sustained a live feel, while the sound field collapsed on the CR75. However, if I chose to find the sweet spot for the CR75, centered about 4ft to 5ft away, the live feel became apparent. This is not a terribly beamy speaker but the listening position for maximum enjoyment is confined to a much smaller area than with an AR5. Caveats: The CR75 is NOT the equal of the AR5 when both speakers are in a stand-alone configuration. The CR75 IMO suffers the same problem as all speakers with 6 inch or smaller woofers. None of them can reproduce wide range music below about 150hz without sounding compressed, whereas the AR5 has zero problems in this area. The CR75 is without attenuation controls and IMO is overly bright in the voice band. You will need an equalizer to tame it. Adams
  5. Cambridge Soundworks Model Six vs AR5 This was a subjective comparison of performance above 200hz. Performance below 200hz for both AR5 and Model Six was identical in this setup because both speakers were on a switch serving as satellites for a shared bass system. The Cambridge Model Six is a 2 way acoustic suspension speaker, designed by Henry Kloss, with an 8” inch bass/mid and 1 ¾ cone tweeter crossed over at 2000hz. I bought mine new in a $50/pair closeout about 12 years ago. This would seem like a no brainer against an AR5 but when you eliminate bass as a criterion it is easier to focus on other things such as imaging, clarity and sound-field size. Using these three criteria I found differences ranging from negligible to stark, depending on program material. Both speaker systems were volume equalized and connected to identical electronics and source. The Model Six has no attenuation controls but its sound profile was sufficiently close to the AR5s and my AR9s that I did not make any equalizer adjustment. Program material was Pop/Jazz Vocals, symphony orchestra, and John Coltrane. The results: Clarity of both systems is shockingly similar in pop vocal performance and possibly near indistinguishable in a blind test especially if the recording is a studio mix. The sound field of the AR5 is much larger but on pop recordings the collapse of the sound field when switching to the Six is not easily perceived except at the moment of the switch. The AR5 moves into another class playing material recorded live in a large venue. Orchestral works come alive and the sound field is expansive. The model six produces a stereo image that is missing the diffuse, reverberant effect which is a signature of the AR classic domes . The Model Six sound, by comparison, seems two dimensional and hangs flat in the space between the speakers. Conclusion: With its 2000hz crossover and 8 inch woofer the Model Six is beamy and is not what I prefer in a music system but it is linear and sounds good if you can stay in the sweet spot. I will probably put mine to use with my daughter’s TV.
  6. Hi guys, i just scored a set of AR5's. They are in desperate need of some TLC. Woofers and mids are good, although the woofs need some new foam. Both front wired tweets have loose leads and need to be fixed. (In case that fails, i can go the Hi-Vi way.) But there is one thing that bothers me, those pots are dry AF. But really dry! I can't get any sound with those in the signalpath. I know that these things go fubar after 40+ years,but i don't tend to use tone controls anyway. My question is, is there a way to completely bypass the tone control pots on the AR5's.? And what do i need to do, which components in the crossover do need to be removed and which ones are supposed to stay to keep the speakers sound like they should? Of course i will do the whole shebang of revitalizing the xo with fresh film caps and new terminals.
  7. I've just uploaded some AR speaker reviews from High Fidelity magazine to my server. You can access them here: https://archive.mgm51.com/library/AcousticResearch/
  8. I've acquired a nice pair of AR5 enclosures; I've managed to find the appropriate woofers and there are viable options for the tweeters. I am now searching for a pair of AR5 midranges. If you have a pair or know of a source please let me know.
  9. The AR-5 was a great-sounding speaker in its own right, but it was a sales/marketing flop. At the time, $175 ea. was very high compared to the 2ax’s $128 and the Large Advent’s $102/116. Especially for a speaker (the 5) with low bass so deficient compared to the OLA. What AR should have done is come out with a 12” 2ax, not a 10” 3a. Looking at the cost-up from the 2ax (AR’s own parts price list), the 12” woofer is $20 more than the 10” woofer. That’s retail, so wholesale (AR’s likely cost at manufacturing level) would be half that, or $10. The slightly larger 3a-sized cabinet, extra internal bracing and machine inserts for the 12” woofer mounting would be about $10 tops wholesale for the cabinet. (There wouldn’t be any fancy 3a-style picture-frame molding on this one; that would be reserved just for the 3a. This cab would be the same size and construction as the 3a, however.) Everything else would be 2ax—mid, tweeter, x-over. It’d be a straight $20 wholesale cost-up from the 2ax, which would be $40 retail. 10” 2ax = $128 ea. 12” 2ax = $168 ea. Now that kind of AR-5 would’ve sold. Steve F.
  10. Hi folks, so time flies and i finally tried to install the Hivi tweeters in my AR5s. Carefully removed the tape holding the very thin copper wires, then took the tweeter out. I have zero soldering experience (and practically no knowledge of electronics), but just wanted to see if the Hivis worked. I carefully attached the copper wires to the new tweeter terminal, but no tweeter sound. rather than messing anything else up, i put the original ones back. So now what- there are other things that could be wrong, but I'm not sure i have the skill set to figure it out. I'd really like to hear what these are supposed to sound like. (I also still need to recap my KLH Model 17s, but that's another story.)
  11. Something about unfinished pine cabinet models for me lately. On the relative heels of those real nice AR2's I came into this very nice set of unfinished 5's today. Everything is intact and functioning. Pots are rough but found spots to get all drivers working. Great grilles and badges. Stickers on the back are like new. Must have been in a console or up on a shelf all these years. Serial numbers are 28834 and 28840. Sound is okay. Bass is oddly lean. Do seem to soak up the power. Hard to judge at this early juncture.
  12. Hi All - Just joined the site after coming across my first pair of Acoustic Research speakers - AR5's to be precise. These showed up in somewhat decent shape from 5 feet away, but the finish on the veneer was missing in patches, along with scratches, mostly on the bottoms, and a few small chips. I did hook them up to a Marantz 1060 briefly at very, very low volume, and noted all drivers were working, although the woofer surrounds were shot after peeking through the grills with a flashlight. A bit of oxidation in the pots as well, as moving them around a bit would cause one of the tweeters to cut out a bit. Even at low volume (and only for perhaps 30 seconds), I could tell that these were well deserving of a restoration, so I'm all in for this! I ordered up some surrounds from Vintage AR, Dayton caps from PE, and got to work on the cabinets. Some before pics, and some in-progress ones of the cabs. So far, I both cabs have been carefully sanded down with 220 grit, being very careful of the edges. Went through about 4 sheets of paper for my hand sander, but I'd say 95% of the scratches are completely gone. Absolutely gorgeous veneer was hiding under there. I've looked through the AR forum, I'm somewhat leaning towards a mahagony stain (wet sanded perhaps), and then 2-3 coats of Watco Danish oil (walnut) as it seems a few folks have gone that route. Any tips/tricks/thoughts from others? I'm really not a fan of Tung oil or boiled linseed oil... hoping to avoid those. Looking for a recommendation on the brand of mahagony stain ( Minwax?) as well as medium or dark Watco oil. More to follow! Dave
  13. I saw these AR5 speakers on CL. The tweeters do not look original. Can anyone confirm this? http://boston.craigslist.org/nos/ele/5820005273.html
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