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rbroghammer
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Old Boston Acoustics, Proton, Nakamichi

New to the group, here. Lots of questions. I'm seeing a lot of stuff on Paradigm, Klipsch, etc. I am an old (relatively cheap) audiophile currently rehabbing a pair of 1989 Boston Acoustics A60's, series II. In the 80's, they were the best sounding speakers I could find for the price as I detested bass reflex speakers. What about BA now? And what about replacing the woofers on my old pair (only going to cost $80)? They were powered by a Proton D540 (also may need replacement) with a Nakamichi deck and Sony CD player (need to find a new one of those, too).

Any suggestions for a rehabbing 80's audiophile? I've seen some good suggestions on integrated amps that aren't too expensive on this thread and I don't think repair of the Proton is cost-effective.

Jan Vigne
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Re: Old Boston Acoustics, Proton, Nakamichi

Sorry, the 60's are rather dated. That's not a knock on the Bostons, they were good value for the money in the late 1980's. (I still have A200's and A40's sitting in the closet so it's not like I don't know the Boston sound.) But few speakers hold up as time marches forward. Listen to a few decent budget lines today and I think you'll agree, the mids of the BA's are still not bad but everything else lags behind. The problem today is finding a sealed enclosure. The bass on almost every affordable speaker is subject to the vagaries of a ported box. Even most subs are vented.

On the other hand, you can find a pair of classic speakers such as old Quads, BC1's or LS3/5a's that still sound like music. Even at thirty to fifty years of age, they will be a step up from the Bostons.

Sounds like you need to find a good dealer to spend some time listening.

piinob
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Re: Old Boston Acoustics, Proton, Nakamichi

Greetings from another retread. I just recently returned to the audio community myself. I am still using me Carver 1.0t. It just works too well. My sons adopted my Klipsch Heresy speakers a few years ago and they are still doing excellent.(The speakers) I still have my old Yamaha CD changer and it works amazingly well after twenty years of almost continuous use. I did, however, buy an Oppo 981 player. It might be the best value I have ever seen in the audio market. I have also acquired a pair of Paragigm spekers, and a McIntosh C-37. I have some other bits and pieces, but that is my main system. I expect to acquire a DAC next. Probably a Monarchy.
I have read a lot of Art Dudley and am very tempted to try my hand at vinyl again. He makes it sound so inviting. But I still remember the frustration of trying to do very delicate maneuvers with my very un-delicate hands. lol

rbroghammer
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Re: Old Boston Acoustics, Proton, Nakamichi

One of the local custom shops carries Paradigm, Monitor Audio, and System Audio speakers. They also carry Anthem, Musical Fidelity, Audio Control, B & K, Niles Audio, Cambridge Audio, Denon, Marantz, Creek & Music Hall, and Escient on the electronics side, Marantz, Mitsubishi, Hitachi, Pioneer, LG, and Denon on the video side.

I'm not looking to break the bank here and have a limited budget for home theater (and separate home audio), looking to spend $3-4k for home theater plus additional for TV or projector and screen.

Suggestions?

Jan Vigne
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Re: Old Boston Acoustics, Proton, Nakamichi

Not really. I would have to know a lot more about your preferences and needs before I would even venture a guess. There's a reasonably good mix of products to choose from in your local shop. You could make a very respectable system from what's carried there. Or, make a road trip to listen to a few other options. It's difficult to argue against local service though.

You obviously hold on to your gear for long time periods so pick lines that have proven they have staying power. Lines such as Monitor Audio have been around for years with a reputation of providing good quality product. Marantz, though one of the oldest names still building decent audio, has been under various management since Saul sold the original company to SuperScope back in the '70's. They will not support older Marantz products. Ask questions before you buy.

If you haven't heard any live music lately, I would suggest a few refresher dates in what the real thing sounds like. After that set your priorities and give the dealer a call. Ask for the manager, explain what you are doing and ask to be set up with a salesperson who will take their time with you and let you listen. Set up an appointment on a slow weekday and take in a few discs you like. Set a budget knowing you'll probably go over it a bit. Listen and decide. Don't rely on other people's opinions. Ask what the store's policies are as far as after the sales set up assistance, upgrades and exchanges. Don't be afraid to ask questions.

rbroghammer
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Re: Old Boston Acoustics, Proton, Nakamichi

Good advice. And, as I have read countless times on this forum, beauty is in the ear of the beholder.

My needs, I think, are relatively basic. I listen to mostly modern rock and alternative, occasional classical, generally while exercising, so I'm pretty active while listening. I never sit still and just listen. Thus, I probably don't need to pay the extra $$$ for a half percent gain from a "top of the line" system.

For home theater needs, I'm leaning toward a 6.1 or 7.1 system but that may be overkill for the room size (13x18). It will be a dedicated home theater room, no intention at this time for gaming (but that is a possibility). The room has no windows and only one door. I plan on elevating the subfloor off the concrete and putting in insulation batts, homasote, and resilient channel to soundproof (I like my movies to be loud enough to thoroughly enjoy). I'm considering a projector and screen vs LCD or Plasma.

I'm finding out now the same I found out a couple years ago when I was looking at some audio equipment - my knowledge is most severly lacking, only worse now. Heck, even some of the stuff at Best Buy sounds good, so I know I'm lacking!

Thanks Jan for your previous input. And while I was born in the 60's (barely) I had never heard of BA until the 80's!

Jan Vigne
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Re: Old Boston Acoustics, Proton, Nakamichi

In the beginning, there was AR (1957). AR begat KLH (1961). KHL begat Advent (1967). Advent begat Boston Acoustics (1978). And so on, and so on. A nepotistic bunch those New Englanders. Must be the weather.

rbroghammer
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Re: Old Boston Acoustics, Proton, Nakamichi

Jan -

I read yesterday on Audioholics website about the July 2006 Denon and Boston Acoustics line show. The article indicated that BA had been recently acquired by D&M Holdings which also owns Marantz, Denon, McIntosh, Snell Acoustics, ReplayTV and Escient.

Makes me wonder if we'll see a resurgence of the BA name and reputation.

I sampled some Paradigm Titans yesterday. Overall very nice sound. Tomorrow I will compare them to some Monitor Audio speakers and next weekend to some System Audio.

I have now been bitten by the 'bug'.

Thanks a lot!

Thor
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Re: Old Boston Acoustics, Proton, Nakamichi

Henry Kloss begat them
Henry Kloss Wiki
Some of the Nakamichi recievers were Nelson Pass Stasis designs
It is difficult to find the correct driver to put in an old box , you can have the surrounds repaired
Or ask Josh at Madisound what might work in your box

Thor
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Re: Old Boston Acoustics, Proton, Nakamichi
Jan Vigne
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Re: Old Boston Acoustics, Proton, Nakamichi

I think you're confusing the Nakamichi power amplifier with their receivers of the same time period. I sold those products back in the mid 1980's and, to my recollection, Nakamichi never implied the receivers were anything more than a typical class AB receiver of the day. They certainly didn't appear any different inside the chassis and they didn't sound any different working through speakers. The power amp they introduced with that series of components, about the time they introduced the Dragon turntable (which went to great pains to center the disc), was spoken of as being a derivative of the Stasis amplifiers but was never claimed to have been designed by Nelson Pass. Nakamichi seemed willing to tie themself to Pass's reputation without giving him any credit for actual work.

Thor
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Re: Old Boston Acoustics, Proton, Nakamichi

Nelson Pass

I suppose Stereophile could interview him, again?

Jan Vigne
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Re: Old Boston Acoustics, Proton, Nakamichi

I'd like to see a Nelson Pass interview. He pops up with a reasonable degree of frequency since his First Watt designs are receiving plenty of attention at the moment. They seem to be quite a distance away from his work with Threshold. But, from what I understand, Pass has never been much on discussing his relationship with Nakamichi.

You may be correct about the receivers. Your link doesn't actually prove they were a Stasis technology, just that someone other than Pass says they were. Pass doesn't corroborate that statement. Twenty five years later, I don't remember. I know the receivers didn't last on the market and our repair shop was busy repairing most of what we sold. I suppose there's a "cult" market for the mid '80's Nakamichi receivers. But for some reason there's also a market for mid 1970's Marantz and Pioneer. Go figure!

Thor
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Re: Old Boston Acoustics, Proton, Nakamichi

I guess we can ask Nelson....
I doubt anyone would have a gag order 20 years later.
My Nak receiver just died after a lightning storm. I was a good match for a pair of Dynaudio 12 inch 3 ways I built in the 80's. The foam surrounds have lond since rotted, I never use foam surrounds anymore, the education of the years. My first pair of Dalesford's with rubber? surrounds are only now showing change in the surrounds ( late 1970's....) If you spend a summer building speakers it is nice if they last 30 years and not 10.

rbroghammer
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Re: Old Boston Acoustics, Proton, Nakamichi

Thor -

Thank you for the repair kit link. However, at about twice the price, I just ordered 2 new woofers and put them in. They sound great.

I did sample some Paradigm Monitor 7's this weekend and compared them to some Monitor Audio RS6's. The Paradigm is a more sensitive speaker (96dB vs 90dB) and the initial impression was that the Paradigm were better. After a 2 hour comparison with the exact same music going thru each pair utilizing a Denon DVD/CD and a Denon integrated amp (all at the dealers) I finally concluded that the Monitor Audio sounded more 'musical' and to my ear a little more pure. It is difficult to describe the difference but the Paradigm were a little more 'forward' especially in the mid-ranges which made them sound a little 'pushy'.

I can't wait to travel this weekend a hundred miles south to sample the System Audio speakers (same dealer, but different location, a local 'chain' of 3 stores).

I'll likely save the Paradigm system for home theater use.

Thor
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Re: Old Boston Acoustics, Proton, Nakamichi

Hawkfan
glad your woofers worked out. Hopefully they had similar Theil Small paramters. The crossover will of a bit too....
Subscribe to Audio Amateur - previously Speaker builder, if you are ever going to build some in the future. I've read every issue since the 1970's and numerous JAES articles.

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