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sybarite
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Repair or throw out AR-48 speakers

Hi everyone,

My Dad has asked me to help him buy new speakers because I'm a classical musician and have better/more trained ears than him.

He has a set of old Acoustic Research AR48s. The foam around the mid and woofer has completely disintegrated. After doing some reasearch online it appears that the foam is replacable.

Is it worth it to fix the foam, & (cones if neccesary) or even buy new drivers? Detail at http://simplyspeakers.com/

Or should he just start over? I know he is not into HIFI and would probably not want to spend more than $300. (I'm thinking craigslist or ebay)

Help me help my Dad!

Jan Vigne
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Re: Repair or throw out AR-48 speakers

If you need to spend money on other parts of the system and this amount of money would buy a better source (CD player or turntable) or amplifier, repair the speakers. Otherwise, if you can manage to buy what you like and still have $300 for speakers, write off the AR's and buy new. Speakers have improved considerably in this price range since the AR's were on the market.

jackfish
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Re: Repair or throw out AR-48 speakers

If he liked the sound of the AR-48s by all means just refoam the drivers. Unless someone was careless with them I doubt they need new cones. Those are 80s vintage so the caps are probably OK as well.

For more information on reconditioning Acoustic Research speakers try: http://www.classicspeakerpages.net/IP.Board/index.php?showforum=3

Dorsia777
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In my humble opinion

Very few things are more fun (or maddening depending on who you ask) then demo’ing new speakers.

If you’ve never repaired speakers before it’s not that hard. However, visiting your closest high end audio store with a curated playlist is infinitely more enjoyable. And there’s the post listening session martini and burger which is way better than the smell of rubber cement and reading lousy instructions.

pomacanthus
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reforming

I had my Henry Kloss designed Advent speaker refoamed at Midwest Speaker here in the Midwest for $70
They sound amazing with the right power and placement and I even built custom Black walnut isolation stands for them.

pomacanthus
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PS

The caveat to making my Advents really shine if offering them a bonafide minimum 75W per channel power which to my knowledge is indicative of old school passive speakers. You put serious clean power behind them and they come alive. Ideally I would be at 100W per channel but a guy needs to budget to get all this gear.

markoneswift
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Hi there - normally, as a big

Hi there - normally, as a big vintage audio fan myself, I would say fix those suckers and enjoy! Are you buying brand new, or just new-to-dad speakers? Is the rest of his gear vintage or not? Just wondering because if buying new, you may find the power requirements for modern speakers a bit of a stretch for lower powered vintage amplification. Back in the day, when amps were commonly in the 15 - 30 watt / channel category, speaker efficiency was quite a bit higher (generally speaking) than it is now. Perhaps you should either fix up the ARs (new foam and recap the crossovers - an easy DIY job) or seek out some other vintage high efficiency speakers from the likes of Boston.

I will add as a note though that there are serious bargains to be had in the modern-era speakers, maybe those models in the 10 - 2- year old bracket. Whilst not vintage, they are old enough to be popping up in Facebook listings etc. I picked up a pair of Totem Tabu with stands yesterday, for just $350. If you look at what they cost new, that's a total bargain. They are 85.5Db efficient (so kinda inefficient) but for me they drive fine with my little NAD amp.

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