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Guest xrayspex78

Why so rare?

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Guest xrayspex78

If Cizek had more than one model of speakers, then why in the hell are they so hard to find? Where did most of the speaekers end up anyways? I seen a very impressive photo of the dual Cizek subwoofer, on the forums here. Does anyone have one of those? By the way does anyone have a picture of Roy Cizek. Cizek seems like such a mystery to me and I want to know more than what I've read here. Sorry for all of the questions, but I just find Cizek so fascinating.

Sincerely,

Brian

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>If Cizek had more than one model of speakers, then why in the

>hell are they so hard to find? Where did most of the speaekers

>end up anyways? I seen a very impressive photo of the dual

>Cizek subwoofer, on the forums here. Does anyone have one of

>those? By the way does anyone have a picture of Roy Cizek.

>Cizek seems like such a mystery to me and I want to know more

>than what I've read here. Sorry for all of the questions, but

>I just find Cizek so fascinating.

>

>Sincerely,

>Brian

Hi Brian;

If I had not come to this web site, I would never have even heard of Cizek speakers.

From what I have read here, those that own them, cherish them.

Paolo, a valued member, is very likely the most knowledgeable member on Cizek speakers.

He really cherishes his Cizek speakers and has been very helpful in helping both the members and the library with literature.

I feel that he will try to assist you with you questions, if I know Paiolo, and if he has the spare time, he is a very busy man.

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DEAR BRIAN,

I 'll try to answer your questions:

>If Cizek had more than one model of speakers, then why in the

>hell are they so hard to find? Where did most of the speaekers

>end up anyways?

I think that Who bought CIZEK speakers in the 70-80th was a real pure sound lover. In fact CIZEK speakers became famous in Italy 'cause of their precision in reproducing sound, especially voices and basses. Moreover they were the only flat impedance speakers ever made. I think that who've got a pair of CIZEK won't sell them; this is the reason why they are so rare. However there are speakers much more rare than CIZEK.

I seen a very impressive photo of the dual

>Cizek subwoofer, on the forums here. Does anyone have one of

>those?

Yes, I know a man (Cristiano) who lives in Veneto (Northern Italy) who sell a pair of CIZEK model one plus a pair of MG27 subwoofer for 700 euros. If you are interested I might give you his phone number.

By the way does anyone have a picture of Roy Cizek.

I tried to ask Roy Cizek's stepdaughter material about Roy; also pictures, but without success, at least till now...

>Cizek seems like such a mystery to me and I want to know more

>than what I've read here. Sorry for all of the questions, but

>I just find Cizek so fascinating.

I completely agree, i'm in line with this feeling:

>

>Sincerely,

>Brian

Sincerely,

Paolo

Fano - Italy

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Guest heykayde

Hi Brian,

Yes, I think the other posters are correct in saying that most people would not part with their Cizek's. I'm not an expert, but I actually worked there for around 5 years decades ago. All I can remember is I never met Roy, I understand he was blind and had a very acute sense of sound. It was run by a gentleman by the name of Sheldon Feinstien at the time I was there. He passed away of a heart attack on his way to work one morning and the company did not survive much longer after that. It was a small company, no more that 30 people when I was there. It was not massed produced. Everything was done by hand and tested thoroughly. Every conductor had to be within certain +/- tolerances, every crossover was inspected for proper solder joints. My best friend worked in the woofer department and would truely get upset when testing came out even slightly less than perfect. It was not unusal for woofers to be scraped saving only the magnet and starting all over again to assure a great product. I ended up working in purchasing and believe me, they had pretty strict requirements. I have the Koa wood ones and absolutely love them. They were featured on the cover of (I believe it was) High Fidelity Magazine. We were very excited about great ratings and the free advertisement. Well, I know I haven't answered all your questions, but it was nice for me to reminise for a moment. It was and exciting job.

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Hi there;

Thank you for a little insite into Cizek speakers.

It is nice to hear of high quality, individual tuning, hand workmanship.

I never heard of the speaker name Cizek until I came to this site.

No wonder Paolo loves his Cizek speakers so much.

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Guest carl cizek

The first pic is of the latest from Roy before his death in 1993, Not the model 1's.

the second is from a back page of his brochue from the 1970

the third is of Roy with his youngest son in Canan Conn.

In regards to the rarety, thats probably caues he and Ron made then by hand and most went to Europe

post-103225-1213408224.jpg

post-103225-1213408385.jpg

post-103225-1213408500.jpg

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carl cizek said:
The first pic is of the latest from Roy before his death in 1993, Not the model 1's.

the second is from a back page of his brochue from the 1970

the third is of Roy with his youngest son in Canan Conn.

In regards to the rarety, thats probably caues he and Ron made then by hand and most went to Europe

Hi Carl and welcome!

A request--could you post a higher resolution copy of the second attachment?

I just bought a pair of Sound Windows (SW!) and am eagerly awaiting their arrival!

Kent

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DEAR BRIAN,

I 'll try to answer your questions:

>If Cizek had more than one model of speakers, then why in the

>hell are they so hard to find? Where did most of the speaekers

>end up anyways?

I think that Who bought CIZEK speakers in the 70-80th was a real pure sound lover. In fact CIZEK speakers became famous in Italy 'cause of their precision in reproducing sound, especially voices and basses. Moreover they were the only flat impedance speakers ever made. I think that who've got a pair of CIZEK won't sell them; this is the reason why they are so rare. However there are speakers much more rare than CIZEK.

I seen a very impressive photo of the dual

>Cizek subwoofer, on the forums here. Does anyone have one of

>those?

Yes, I know a man (Cristiano) who lives in Veneto (Northern Italy) who sell a pair of CIZEK model one plus a pair of MG27 subwoofer for 700 euros. If you are interested I might give you his phone number.

By the way does anyone have a picture of Roy Cizek.

I tried to ask Roy Cizek's stepdaughter material about Roy; also pictures, but without success, at least till now...

>Cizek seems like such a mystery to me and I want to know more

>than what I've read here. Sorry for all of the questions, but

>I just find Cizek so fascinating.

I completely agree, i'm in line with this feeling:

>

>Sincerely,

>Brian

Sincerely,

Paolo

Fano - Italy

P.S.: Since February 2008 I've got my own MG 27 SubWoofer. GREAT !!!

Paolo ;)

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Hi there.  I'm looking for people interest in Cizek both if wanted to purchase or info on restoring Koa speakers.  I posted the following on another thread here.  I apologize for the duplication but it seems the threads are outdated and I wanted to reach as many people as I could.
Not sure if anyone still checks this forum or this thread but I had to chime in.  I worked at Cizek in Andover, MA, then in Lawrence when they moved after Sheldon passed away.  I was there when we heard the news of his passing.  He was on his way to work and died of a heart attack during the commute.  I never met Roy but I answered the phone when Paolo called, although I never met him either.  I started out in the factory assembling and soldering the crossovers then worked in the office purchasing transistors, Peerless tweeters, etc.  The woofers were made in the factory by my best friend.  The speakers were stuffed with fiberglass, as all Cizek speakers were.  I didn't do that job but I believe it was weighed  before final assembly to make sure it was the correct amount. I remember being told it made a big difference as everything in assembly did. 

We were like a family of pretty young workers and we all loved working there at a time when everyone was so proud of their work.  I think I even have a photo of a group of us buried in my box of photos.   I even had a pair of parakeets at the time.  One was green & yellow, the other blue & white and I named them Woofer and Tweeter representing the color of the wires that went to the woofers and tweeters.  Tweeter was green and yellow, Woofer was either white or blue and another color (perhaps red?)  

I can remember when the koa's were on the front page of High Fidelity Magazine.  We were all pretty stoked about that.  Free advertising!  I may even have a copy of that page.  I know I have a copy of the retail price list of all the speakers made at the time.   The ka1's sold for $300/each ($600/pair).  This was around 40 years ago and although I got a little discount, I remember between the speakers and acrylic stands, it was a big investment when I was that young. 

I still own that pair of Koa KA1's, complete with stands that I have babied for decades.  I fell upon this forum while trying to research and figure out what to do with them. They would need some restoration but all in all they are in great shape considering their age.  One has a replacement woofer while the other still has the original but the foam ring is deteriorating.  I had replaced the tweeters at one point as the dome had collapsed.  I believe they were replaced with the original Peerless model but not positive.   I do not recall anything being done to the tweeters at the factory other than perhaps a coating added to the dome.  Pretty much everything else was assembled in house though.   It's possible that Peerless may have made them special order.  I've also replaced the foam front grills that disintegrated.  I found some cloth ones that fit fairly well attached with small strips of velcro in the corners.   I remember spinning and testing the inductors.  We also tested the resistors and capacitors that were purchased to make sure they were within the stated +/- tolerance levels.  I hot glued the parts and soldered the crossovers, which would be meticulously examined by QC to make sure there weren't any cold solder joints.  I was fortunate to be able to pick out what I thought were the most beautiful koa cabinets in stock by wetting the wood to see the grain, then I did the finishing work on them with many coatings of tung oil buffing between coats with steel wool which gave them a beautiful satin finish.  There was tiny bit of a gloss but definitely not a high shine gloss.  The tung oil really brought out the beauty of the wood. That's all they needed.  No staining was ever done on them.   The grain on the tops of my cabinets almost look like ripples of water, one a bit more than the other.  Our factory took time to match the cabinets into pairs as koa wood has a lot of variation of shades and grains.  The wood has such a great play of light in the grain.  The engineers used to use a sound room for testing to make sure everything was built and assembled to spec likening it to the fine tuning of a handmade violin.  In fact,  I believe the head engineer or his son used to build violins.  I remember he had quite the trained ear and could tell if the amount of stuffing wasn't precisely correct.   

I may post photos if I ever see any response on here.  I was considering selling and still might but now my son thinks he wants to keep them so I'm not sure. I found what appears to be actual logo plates on Ebay and may purchase while they are still available.   I'm curious if anyone knows approximately how much they are worth.  It would be hard to part with them as they bring back memories and I'm proud of the fact that I know I had a lot to do with the building of these particular speakers.  Anyone still out there?

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On 2/4/2019 at 7:25 AM, heykayde said:
Hi there.  I'm looking for people interest in Cizek both if wanted to purchase or info on restoring Koa speakers.  I posted the following on another thread here.  I apologize for the duplication but it seems the threads are outdated and I wanted to reach as many people as I could.
Not sure if anyone still checks this forum or this thread but I had to chime in.  I worked at Cizek in Andover, MA, then in Lawrence when they moved after Sheldon passed away.  I was there when we heard the news of his passing.  He was on his way to work and died of a heart attack during the commute.  I never met Roy but I answered the phone when Paolo called, although I never met him either.  I started out in the factory assembling and soldering the crossovers then worked in the office purchasing transistors, Peerless tweeters, etc.  The woofers were made in the factory by my best friend.  The speakers were stuffed with fiberglass, as all Cizek speakers were.  I didn't do that job but I believe it was weighed  before final assembly to make sure it was the correct amount. I remember being told it made a big difference as everything in assembly did. 

We were like a family of pretty young workers and we all loved working there at a time when everyone was so proud of their work.  I think I even have a photo of a group of us buried in my box of photos.   I even had a pair of parakeets at the time.  One was green & yellow, the other blue & white and I named them Woofer and Tweeter representing the color of the wires that went to the woofers and tweeters.  Tweeter was green and yellow, Woofer was either white or blue and another color (perhaps red?)  

I can remember when the koa's were on the front page of High Fidelity Magazine.  We were all pretty stoked about that.  Free advertising!  I may even have a copy of that page.  I know I have a copy of the retail price list of all the speakers made at the time.   The ka1's sold for $300/each ($600/pair).  This was around 40 years ago and although I got a little discount, I remember between the speakers and acrylic stands, it was a big investment when I was that young. 

I still own that pair of Koa KA1's, complete with stands that I have babied for decades.  I fell upon this forum while trying to research and figure out what to do with them. They would need some restoration but all in all they are in great shape considering their age.  One has a replacement woofer while the other still has the original but the foam ring is deteriorating.  I had replaced the tweeters at one point as the dome had collapsed.  I believe they were replaced with the original Peerless model but not positive.   I do not recall anything being done to the tweeters at the factory other than perhaps a coating added to the dome.  Pretty much everything else was assembled in house though.   It's possible that Peerless may have made them special order.  I've also replaced the foam front grills that disintegrated.  I found some cloth ones that fit fairly well attached with small strips of velcro in the corners.   I remember spinning and testing the inductors.  We also tested the resistors and capacitors that were purchased to make sure they were within the stated +/- tolerance levels.  I hot glued the parts and soldered the crossovers, which would be meticulously examined by QC to make sure there weren't any cold solder joints.  I was fortunate to be able to pick out what I thought were the most beautiful koa cabinets in stock by wetting the wood to see the grain, then I did the finishing work on them with many coatings of tung oil buffing between coats with steel wool which gave them a beautiful satin finish.  There was tiny bit of a gloss but definitely not a high shine gloss.  The tung oil really brought out the beauty of the wood. That's all they needed.  No staining was ever done on them.   The grain on the tops of my cabinets almost look like ripples of water, one a bit more than the other.  Our factory took time to match the cabinets into pairs as koa wood has a lot of variation of shades and grains.  The wood has such a great play of light in the grain.  The engineers used to use a sound room for testing to make sure everything was built and assembled to spec likening it to the fine tuning of a handmade violin.  In fact,  I believe the head engineer or his son used to build violins.  I remember he had quite the trained ear and could tell if the amount of stuffing wasn't precisely correct.   

I may post photos if I ever see any response on here.  I was considering selling and still might but now my son thinks he wants to keep them so I'm not sure. I found what appears to be actual logo plates on Ebay and may purchase while they are still available.   I'm curious if anyone knows approximately how much they are worth.  It would be hard to part with them as they bring back memories and I'm proud of the fact that I know I had a lot to do with the building of these particular speakers.  Anyone still out there?

 

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Hi Everyone,

I have very little idea of how this forum works or even if it’s still working! But I’ll give it a red hot try....

My late wife was a classical musician here in Australia. She later joined the MELBOURNE Symphony Orchestra in a management roll. 
Before I met her she somehow managed to buy a pair of Cizek Model 1 loudspeakers and I now have them without any clue as to what they were or their place in the world of serious sound. 
 

But the penny is starting to drop. I really want to restore them!  They are both running but the switching in the crossover controls has become noisy and intermittent. The cabinets need some TLC and so do the cloth fronts. 
 

Ive almost finished building a fine woodworking studio here on my largish block of land. Friend of mine is a gifted luthier and will be able to use this facility to repair and construct new violins and violas in the space. My plan is to have the Cizek 1’s running while we work in the studio. I will probably power them with a restored Leak Stereo 60 With Varioslope Stereo and Quad FM 3 tuner. 

 

So here I am hoping to absorb as much inspiration and knowledge about these loudspeakers so I can run them while I work and remember my oboist wife and her choice of musical equipment. 
 

Is anybody still out there? 
 

Hoping to hear. 
 

Dale Bromley

Blairgowrie, Australia 

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Hi Dale

Cizeks are great speakers, made in the USA but seemingly much less popular here than in Italy.

Your Model 1s will probably need a re-foam.

How 'bout some pics? Size them to about 100 - 200KB.

Kent

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Hey. Hi there Kent. Really lovely that you wrote back!  I appreciate it greatly. 
ok. I shall get the speakers out of their storage and start taking pictures. I promise! I really have a strong desire to restore these loudspeakers. AND I’ll soon have a great place to enjoy them in use. 
Talk with you soon. 
All the very best from Oz. 

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Love reading everything about Cizek speakers.

I worked for a little while in Newton and Andover... on breaks from school.

My Dad was Sheldon Feinstein, the president of Cizek Audio. yes, tragically, my dad had a heart attack on his way to work in Andover.  He was very excited to go to work that day as it was going to be the first "official" inventory of the company. July 1, 1980.

Happy to hear from anyone at steven <dot> j <dot> feinstein <at> gmail <dot> com

Here is a photo of my dad at CES showing of the KA-1s. https://photos.app.goo.gl/WEdWnbW952DVJ7Pq6

 

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Hey Steven

Welcome to the CSP! Very happy to have someone with a personal connection here. Unfortunately the Cizek section doesn't get much traffic, and most Cizek fans seem to be in Italy but I hope you will have much to contribute here.

Kent

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Hi Kent...
Glad to see that the list is still active. Glad I tried another google search for Cizek today and found the thread. Looking back through other Cizek posts, it looks like I relied as a guest awhile back. Oh well, official now. 
 
I always pronounced it “see-ZAK”. My Dad did as well. But of course we had the occasional “see-ZICK”. 
 
I have some pretty happy memories helping out. At the different locations. I only really remember California St in Newton, MA and then Stevens St in Andover, MA.
One of my first jobs was to help wind the coils in the crossover circuit. Not being an engineer, and totally acting as a smart teenager, I never understood why the coils had to be wound an exact number of times. I remember that some of my coils didn’t pass QA and I had to re-do them.
 
I was looking at the KA-1 cabinets you restored. My Dad would be so proud. He loved the Koa wood cabinets. I still remember how he proudly showed off the finishing station in the factory and told everyone about the multi-step process to get the cabinet to look and feel just right. They were awesome.
My family still has a few pairs around.
 
For my 17th birthday, my Dad gave me a  Sound Window speaker system. The two speakers plus the subwoofer. I used those in college and beyond. Loved them.
Unfortunately, the paper on the subwoofer deteriorated and I finally had to let them go about 2 years ago. Almost 40 years later!
 
i will search through boxes of memories and talk with my brother and see if we can find anything else to share.  
 
there is the story of the employee who was the last guy on the assembly line; packing up the speakers and taping up the boxes.  He was a huge Zappa fan.  I remember that he would place a piece of paper on top of the speaker cabinet before closing up the box.  So when the customer opened the box, the first thing they would see is a proclamation, “Zappa Lives!!”
 
*smiles*
Good memories indeed. 

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I would have loved to talk to your dad about the KA-1 speakers and the multi-step finishing process. It took a lot of detective work to bring mine back to life. The wood was a challenge but being solid, thick koa they could be sanded aggressively. I then did a little research on how to finish koa. The crossovers were a bigger challenge. The ones in my 1st pair were damaged and I think there were no markings on the components. Member Paolo Lippe provided a schematic from an Italian magazine but again, no values. John O'Hanlon Drew a new schematic (attached below) based on measurements I took. Roy Cizek had a reputation for "golden ears" but also complex crossovers!

I love his solid wood speakers--the koa KA-1s and the oak "High Tech Aspirin". I have 2 pair of KA-1s (one shown below) but would love to get hold of the matching subwoofer! My HTA set is complete with passive sub (pic below) but I only use the sats, as rear speakers in the HT. The 2nd photo shows how thin these speakers are. There was also an active HTA sub.

There appear to have been at least three Cizek companies--the first was Roy's garage in Bloomington Indiana. Then there was the Newton and Andover MA location and finally Torrence, CA, where the HTA line was made. Might have been another. The logos changed too. I have to wonder whether Mr. Cizek was one of those audio geniuses who was less adept at business. It seems the speakers never really caught on here but as I mentioned, there was (is?) a significant following in Italy.

Anyway, good to have you here.

Kent

Cizek KA-1_Crossover.jpg

 

07 19 16_0709.JPG

 

HTA resized.jpg

KA1 resized.jpg

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Hi Stephen!  Thanks for posting the photo of your dad.  I was there the day he never made it to work.  We were devastated.  I was bummed that I couldn't make it to the services as me and another office employee Tina had to stay behind to answer the phones.  He really was the glue that held the company together and unfortunately it didn't last too long after he was no longer running it.  That was when Cizek was still located on Stevens Street in Andover, MA. 

They moved to Canal Street in Lawrence after that for a short while.  I really liked the Stevens Street location and never did get used to the more industrial area they had to move to.  It was on top of a company that printed the plastic bags for Wonder Bread and the stench from those chemicals would sneak up to our level.  By the end of the day our eyes were bloodshot from it. I believe that was the last place in the area.  

I'm wondering if I ever met you because I did the soldering on the crossovers and can remember spun coils of red wire.  Did you do them after hours or on weekends?  There was a knack to spinning them neatly.  I wasn't that good at it but I could solder up a crossover without a hint of a cold solder joint.  :D We were all so proud of our work there.  It was a fairly young crowd.  I was around 20 as most of the workers in the factory area.   I'm pretty sure I know who you are talking about the Zappa story.  His name is escaping me right now but I can picture his shoulder length strawberry blonde hair.   I'm pretty sure I have an old photo of the group.  I'll try to find and scan it for here.  We were all pretty good friends.  I was just looking through my old albums for one that they were able to get for me.  It was a master recording of Dark Side of the Moon.  

Yeah,  We pronounced it “see-ZAK” and I still do.

It would be a miracle to get your hands on a sub woofer.  They were nearly always back ordered.  We'd wait for what seemed like forever for the container to finally get to the factory and there would only be one or two woofer cabinets, if any.  It  was even hard to get the smaller main cabinets but I think they at least came in more steadily than the woofers.  They still  sounded great without the optional woofers but the woofers were always in demand and they weren't always able to fill the orders for them.  The deliveries weren't big and were pretty much sold before they even hit the production line.  I think it had something to do with the fact the koa trees only grew in the Hawaiian Islands and they only grew so big.   They had a hard time getting the koa for the cabinets.  Eventually the trees became illegal to cut down when they were determined to be endangered.

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Hi All: I just ran into this conversation. Great to hear people talking about Cizek speakers. They are fantastic! I'm the proud owner of two sets of Koa KA 1 speakers. One with matching Koa stands. I also have a pair of Model 3's.  I love these speakers. The KA 1's are the best speakers that I have ever heard. I was the buyer of the Italian Ebay set of KA 1's that included the dual sub woofer. The sub was for a friend who had been searching forever to find a match for his KA 1's. I heard the set up many times and it was incredible.

IMG_4465.jpg

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Welcome Greg

Wow. I didn't know they made koa stands. Nicer IMHO than the lucite ones.

Are you in Italy? If you're in the US I imagine shipping was very costly.

Kent

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Hi Kent - Yes, I am in US and yes, the shipping was costly. Not only that but the subwoofer unit was damaged in transit and required significant repair. The woofer you see in the photo is an RH Labs passive subwoofer with a 15" down facing driver. It is massively heavy and works fantastically. RH Labs was a California company and I understand was a pioneer in the world of consumer subwoofers.

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So is the woofer in the photo the thing the TV is sitting on? I like big subwoofers. I have a kit-built VMPS Original Sub with a 12" driver and 15" passive radiator. Because of my ignorance I replaced both the 12" and 15" because of foam rot (live and learn) but thankfully used original VMPS parts. Several years ago I added an "Apex Sr" plate amp.

But I digress. Real bummer about the damage to the Cizek sub. Is it all good now? Please post a picture.

Kent

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Yes. the big wooden cabinet below the  TV is the passive sub woofer. It purports to go down to 17 Hz.

The Cizek Sub did get fixed. I do not have a photo. I was the bidder on it on behalf of another party. The deal was that I kept the KA 1's and the other buyer got the sub. When it arrived, the magnets had been dislodged an the external cross over needed work.

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