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Desert Noises

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Posts posted by Desert Noises

  1. 15 minutes ago, Crankysoldermeister said:

    This thread makes me sad.

    Sad, indeed. Especially when reading about it on a forum all about…sound. My mom had to get hearing aids and I couldn’t understand why. She never worked in the usually suspected noisy environments. Some time before she passed, I asked her about it. She said it may have been from the years she worked at the IRS back in the ‘60s and ‘70s as a keypunch operator. She said all of the typewriters and keypunch machines operating in those large rooms were deafeningly loud. She probably never thought about wearing ear plugs in an office environment. I can see how 8 hours of exposure to that can cause some hearing damage. At work, I’ll occasionally open up my SPL meter app in a noisy environment (mechanical room) and I’m always surprised at how easily it gets to 85+ dB, the threshold of where long-term hearing damage can occur. I carry foam ear plugs in my pocket at work and I also wear them at ALL concerts. Once our hearing is gone, it’s gone for good. Wear your damn hearing protection, kids!

    • Like 1
  2. Like others have pointed out, this doc is too long. I got an hour into it and asked my wife if anything was going to happen, or are we going to be watching the Beatles smoke, drink, and tune their guitars for 8 more hours. 

    I watched it on recommendation from a musician friend of mine who raved about it. I appreciate the Beatles and their music, and the impact they had on music, but I guess I just don’t need to watch how the sausage is made. For people like me, a much condensed version would have been great. I thought it was neat seeing the actual footage of the way everyone interacted, but my attention span ran out of steam a little early on. 

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  3. 2 hours ago, mboxler said:


    Not in Dean's league, but...


    The parallel capacitor will always create a 2nd order electrical filter.  The size of the capacitor, however, dictates the frequency at which the slope starts to drop 12db per octave.


    For a visual, I've attached the two different capacitors across the K33, simulated by a 6 ohm resistor.  Again, this is with the 2.5mh series inductor.  The top green plot is an 80uf capacitor, the middle a 40uf capacitor, and the bottom no capacitor.  As you can see, an 80uf capacitor creates an underdamped filter...the voltage across the K33 actually rises around 1.6db before falling.  Acoustically things will be different, but I thought this might help clarify how parallel capacitors affect a filter.





    Screenshot (93).png

    Thanks for the explanation. That plot helps me visualize what effects the different capacitors have on the LF filter circuit. I have a lot to learn about crossovers, so I'm trying to expand my understanding. I notice on the AL-3 schematic that there are two 68uF capacitors in parallel across the woofer terminals, which would equal 136uF. Would you say that this instead of an 80uF would be adequately damped? What did Klipsch accomplish by adding these capacitors and increasing the inductor to 4mH?

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  4. 19 hours ago, geoff. said:


    @Desert Noises, I was thinking of trying this on an, as yet unbuilt, pair of A/4500s.


    From what little I think I know about crossovers each component causes a phase shift?


    Did you need to, or should I, change any of the polarities to the drivers as a result of this? 

    I'm not the right person to ask since I don't really know. Dean would be the one to ask. However, when I look at later crossover schematics, such as the AL models, which have the parallel capacitors across the woofer terminals, the polarities of all the drivers look the same as they do on the A and AA networks. As I understand it, the woofer is still a first order with the added capacitors. Again, Dean would be the guy to ask about this.

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  5. 22 hours ago, sootshe said:

    “but that boxy “stuffy nose” bass sound was still there, obnoxious as ever.”


    I think part of what you’re hearing is purely the sound of horn loaded bass from a LS.

    Dont expect LS bass to sound warm or full. They have what I would call a “lean” bass sound. Snappy, forcefull, powerful.....sure, but they will never have the same bass tonality as a bass reflex or sealed box system. Not even the same as a K horn.

    Even when you tame the side wall resonance & try anything else you like, you can’t change the basic sound signature of the cabinet design.


    Just my 2 cents worth after spending time with Klipsch heritage & other famous vintage brands that shall remain nameless on this forum.




    I think you are spot on. I’m finding that the La Scala takes a little work to sound right, such as placement and playing with toe-in. They may may not be the best speakers for many rooms. For sure, pulling the mids down by -3dB made a big difference and solved the shoutiness issue. The thing that reduced that stuffy sound at my listening position was toeing them in 45 degrees. Having all that bass energy focused directly at me through the mouth of the bass horn may have been a little much. I also installed an 80uF capacitor across the woofer terminals (parallel), and that seems to help cut some of it out. I’m still listening and evaluating. One thing worth mentioning is that these La Scalas are absolutely magical with classical music. 

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  6. 14 hours ago, mikebse2a3 said:


    When you compare do you swap the locations of the speakers with each other…?



    I have La Scala AL5 and unfortunately a square room that creates a situation that sounds very similar  to what you have described. Moving the loudspeakers and listener location to minimize room mode issues is absolutely critical and just a few inches of adjustments can have dramatic improvements.




    I have not actually swapped the Cornwalls with the La Scalas. The Cornwalls are in the basement and I am waiting for some ambition to bring them up and try them in my main living room. I corrected the harsh "beaming" mid horns by attenuating them by -3dB. That made a big difference and they sound balanced now. As for the boxy, nasal, stuffy bass, I somewhat eliminated it by toeing in the LS 45 deg as an experiment. That cancels a lot of it out but I still notice it. I'll leave them positioned that way. Before toeing them in, I moved from my sofa along my back wall and sat in the center of the room (about 10' in front of the LS). By doing that, the soundstage opened up and the LS sounded more natural with 3D and depth. With the 45 deg toe-in I get the same effect sitting on my sofa, even though my horns point to and intersect at the center of the room, which is 10' in front of my sofa.


    The jury's still out, but my LS sound a lot better and are still great speakers. Maybe I just don't prefer short horn bass? I can say for sure that, at this point, I would choose Cornwall bass all day, any day. It's so clean and refined, with depth, and is not in your face. I still have to bring my Cornwalls upstairs to audition in order to prove or deny that assessment.

  7. Update:

    I received a lot of good advice and ideas from you on this thread and I appreciate your feedback. I suspected my midrange to be a bit too hot. So, I ended up dropping my mids down to tap #3 on the auto transformer and replaced the 13uF capacitors with 6.8uF to attenuate the midrange an additional 3dB while maintaining that 400Hz crossover point. 

    First impressions when I played some music were generally positive with a noted reduction in midrange “glare” and better tonal balance - perfect I would say, but that boxy “stuffy nose” bass sound was still there, obnoxious as ever. I temporarily reinforced the sidewalls of the bass horns with wood blocks and clamps to rule out resonance issues. That didn’t have any effect. I did a little more reading on here about speaker placement and interaction with rooms.


    I came across something PWK wrote, recommending a 45 deg toe-in for the best stereo image. Looks to apply to both the La Scala and K-horn. So I tried it, ridiculous as it sounded to toe them in this extreme. Not expecting much, I listened and listened some more. They sound more natural and that dominant boxy sounding bass is reduced to a more acceptable level. I wonder if that boxy sound I’ve been hearing is related to that oft mentioned 148Hz peak inherent in the design of the La Scala.


    To conclude, I can confidently say for sure that the mids belong on tap #3. And for my room, a 45 deg toe-in is the golden ticket to get rid of that nagging upper bass boxy sound. Not sure what science and acoustics are at play here but it works. I’m listening to Rossini overtures right now and I’m getting a great sonic image of the orchestra.

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  8. 1 hour ago, Curious_George said:

    I have a sensitivity to mid-bass frequencies and found the side panel mod helps a lot. In addition, I converted the 6dB woofer crossover to 12dB to roll off the woofer a bit faster due to an anomaly around the 400Hz crossover frequency. This helped tighten up the bass too. To convert to 12dB, add an 80uF/100V bi-polar cap across the woofer terminals.


    The K400 midrange horn can be quite “vocal” (pun intended). Replacing it will really open up the sound and have a more natural presentation even if you keep the K55.

    Interesting point. I think I'm going to try that 12dB roll off mod for the woofers. I know my Cornwalls (B2 crossover) and Heresys (E2 crossover) both have capacitors across their woofers. Possibly for the same purpose? Easy enough and reversible if needed. I'm also going to temporarily clamp some blocks to the sides of the bass bins to add support as a test to see if there's any resonances of the bass horn that are contributing to the sounds I'm hearing.

  9. 3 hours ago, avguytx said:

    It's an acquired taste to the LS and Belles and, apparently, the right signal chain combo.  Kind-of picky.  I've owned La Scalas and Klipschorns over the years and built a beautiful set of Belle inspired clones a few years back.  I had a pair of the Epic CF-3's prior but sold them once I was done with the Belle build, regrettably. I just never warmed up to their sound and worked out a deal where I now have CF-3 version 1's and I'm completely satisfied.  The Belle clones just didn't sound good upstairs in my music room and really had their limitations at our other house.  I'd also had a pair of '78 Cornwalls and KLF-30's at the same time as the first pair of CF-3's and the first two were sold off. 


    It's all personal preference, what works in any given room, and the signal chain as a whole that let's you decide what sounds best to you.  At least in my humble opinion.  

    Sorry to hear about your Belles not working out. At least you had the experience of building them and putting them together. When I built my Cornwalls I couldn’t sleep because I couldn’t stop thinking about the project due to the excitement. I’m glad you are enjoying your CF-3s and are satisfied. I feel that way with my roll-my-own Cornwalls. They really scratch that itch just right. Funny that my La scalas were supposed to be my “endgame” speakers. Looks like the La Scalas are better suited to be my chill-out reasonable volume speakers and the Cornwalls are for when I want a good concert-level session.

  10. 42 minutes ago, Marvel said:

    Bringing the mids down really helped both pair that I have owned. The 1" throat (actually more like 7/8") can be overdriven pretty easily, and sound harsh. However. I had my second pair out at a big party and they rocked.


    ~90 db is getting loud for me, but I've had there before and they were fine.


    Do you have another amp you can try? I hate to use the word synergy, but some equipment just doesn't work together.

    I am leaning toward dropping the mids by 3dB. I’ve read that the K-55-M is a little hotter than other iterations, thus prompting Klipsch to make a number of crossover changes during its time. Speaking of that, I’m curious how the AL-3 would compare with the A/4500 I’m currently using. I do have another amp to try, which I had the LS hooked to a while back in a different space. It’s worth trying just to see.

    • Like 2
  11. 18 minutes ago, 000 said:

    swap out the k55v, the K77 and the B2 XO  into the Lascala , and give your impressions--

    I didn’t think about swapping the B2 crossover to the La Scalas. Would the crossover points be wrong in this application? I have switched out all the drivers between the two. The A-55-G vs K-55-M in the LS sound very similar. The CT120 adds sparkle to the LS, which I like. For clarification, the drivers in the Cornwalls are K-55-M (what the La Scalas originally came with) and they sound amazing in the Cornwalls with the Crites cast aluminum C-600 horns (K-600 clones). Aside from the boxy/stuffy/nasal character coming from the bass horn, the LSs sound very good below ~80dB. When turned up they become a blaring mess and lose the soundstage and imaging. The Cornwalls have that live fullness of a concert when played loud. They are quite articulate and clear at 90dB, with tight rich bass. No boxy, nasal stuffy sounds. Any thoughts on the AL-3 crossover? My LSs originally had the AL, which I promptly (regrettably?) threw away.

  12. I have a 1988 pair of La Scalas with two problems I'm trying to solve:boxy/stuffy bass and harsh midrange. Here's how they are configured:


    Type A/4500 crossovers from Crites

    CT120 Tweeters from Crites

    Stock K-401 mid horn with the A-55-G drivers

    Stock K-33-E woofers (also tried the Eminence Kappa 15C)

    Room size is 16'x20' with high vaulted ceiling, floor carpeted, with La Scalas in corners along the 16' wall, toed in approx 20 deg.

    SVS SB2000 sub crossed at 80 Hz near the right speaker

    Amplification is from a fully restored/recapped Pioneer SX-1250

    DAC for digital music is a Schiit Modi Uber

    Turntable is Kenwood KD-750 with Audio-Technica VM540ML cartridge


    My woes with the La Scalas are as follows: 1) The upper bass sounds boxy, nasal-y and stuffy. 2) The midrange at higher volume (~90 dB) is just plain harsh and unpleasant. I reduce the 100 Hz tone control a bit and that alleviates the boxy/stuffiness to a degree. Meanwhile, I connect my home-built Cornwalls (Clonewalls) with B2 crossovers, K-55 mid, K-77 tweet, and Kappa 15C, and they sound amazing with no fatigue, even at higher volumes. Plus I get bass! Classical music commands a lifelike presence. I used to love the La Scalas before my recently built Cornwalls. Now that I can compare between the two, I vastly prefer the sound of the Cornwall. Am I missing something, or has anyone else had the same experience? I've been considering dropping the mid down 3 dB and changing the capacitor to 6.8 uF. Is there anything else I can try short of doing anything drastic like cutting wood?



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  13. I also live in Tucson and recently bought a pair of La Scalas. I looked for months, but only saw the occasional Heresy pop up on CL. I got impatient and bought a pair off that well-known auction site. They were shipped in their original boxes, late ‘80s models. Paid too much for them, but they are in near mint condition unfinished raw birch. Until I saw those, I was looking at Craigslist in LA and San Diego with a potential road trip in mind. For something to come up in Arizona, let alone Tucson, I’m not sure how patient you’ll need to be. I felt like I was the only person in Tucson interested in Klipsch heritage. I’m glad there’s at least one other! Best of luck to you in your quest.

    • Like 2
  14. 4 hours ago, jimjimbo said:

    You have made all the right choices, especially the Kappa 15C.  Enjoy!

    Along with ClaudeJ1, your posts about successfully using the 15C in some La Scalas influenced my decision to try them. After hearing them I’d recommend them the same as you. Hands down one of the best upgrades for me. The bass lines in The White Stripes’ Seven Nation Army sound downright impressive. Same with timpani, kettle drums, and bass in orchestral pieces. Love it!

  15. 2 hours ago, ClaudeJ1 said:

    Since I was one of the original proponents of the 15C, with it's superior MIDRANGE sound (screw the shorthorn bass) as creating a better balance in my own LaScalas about 10 years ago, the only thing left for you to do now is upgrade to DaveA's fabulous MAHL tweeter horns with B&C DE-120's, 111's or 110's and get a THT LP subwoofer to match.


    Also, if you want to breathe new life into those Heresy 1's, you can turn them into Super Heresy's (Version 2.0 being the best).

    Your posts about the 15C were majorly influential in my decision to try them. I will never switch back to the K—33E. The improvement is that good. In fact, during my testing, I thought I’d try the 15Cs without my subwoofer. I went to turn the sub off, but it was still unplugged from moving the La Scalas around! I know the midrange is definitely much improved, but I hear improvement in the bass across the board. If I lost 5 Hz. down low, then oh well. I didn’t notice. I strongly feel the 15C is the woofer that belongs in the La Scala. I’m currently using an SVS SB-2000 subwoofer, crossed over at ~65 Hz., volume at 1:00, and it transitions so well that I never notice its presence. 

    I’m going to look into those MAHL tweeters a little more. To be honest, I’m lukewarm on the way the elliptical horn “looks.” I bet it sounds great, though. I’m also curious about doing the Super Heresy, especially when I get a second setup going. I did an A/B comparison between my Heresys and La Scalas and, boy, what a difference. The Heresys sound like boom box speakers by comparison!

  16. This is my first post and I’m new to the forum. After owning a pair of Heresy 1s for close to 10 years, I decided to take the next leap and bought a pair of La Scalas in raw birch. One manufactured in 1987 and the other in 1988. They came with the infamous AL crossovers, which I switched out immediately with new Bob Crites AA without even listening to the AL. After vacuuming out the cobwebs I hooked these beasts up and played some music. Initial impression was that drums and other percussion instruments sounded more realistic with incredible 3D imaging. However, the mid bass sounded a bit boxy and stuffy at times compared to my Heresys. 


    Not willing to let well enough alone, I ordered a pair of Allen A-55G drivers and gaskets from Crites to replace the factory K-55M drivers. I noticed quite a difference after this change. That “glare” in the midrange vanished and the soundstage opened up and sounded wider. There is more distance between the instruments, if that makes sense. 

    Out of curiosity, I swapped out the K-77M tweeters with Crites CT-125s I originally installed in my Heresys. I preferred the K-77 in my Heresys over the CT-125s, but in the La Scalas I didn’t notice much difference, if any at all. In my Heresys the CT-125s sounded less detailed and the high end sparkle I liked  in the K-77 disappeared. Not sure why it makes a less dramatic difference in the La Scalas, but I suspect it is because the midrange and bass on the La Scala are more efficient than those on the Heresy.


    I read some members’ posts on here regarding excellent results from replacing the stock K-33E woofer with the Eminence Kappa 15C. Initially this sounded like a dubious upgrade because of the thinner gasket issue but Parts Express had a great open box deal on the Kappa 15Cs a couple weeks ago, so I pulled the trigger for a small risk. I installed the new woofers last week. I must say that, besides the A-55G, this is the biggest, most noticeable upgrade thus far. That annoying boxy/stuffy sound in the mid-upper bass is gone and the bass is much more punchy and realistic. These La Scalas sound so much better now. Wide soundstage, accurate depth and texture, and clear detail. It’s hard to describe, but these speakers are leagues better than they were when I first got them. 

    The only thing I’m itching to try now is Crites CT-120s vs the CT-125s I’m using now. Another curiosity is lowering the crossover point to 4500 Hz. Anyone done that with A—55Gs and noticed any difference in the upper end? 

    This is a great forum and I really appreciate the knowledge you have shared here



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