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Ave Bona Cornwall

Help needed regarding La Scala

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I'm about to pick up a pair of not great looking La Scala's, and plan on putting some work into them.  I'm just looking for advice on a couple topics.

 

The crossovers (type AA) look pretty old and don't seem to be in great shape, so I figure I'll replace them.  Would Bob Crites AA crossover be better or ALK's universal economy?  Or should I be considering a different Xover (such as AL-3, A/4500, ALK slope) since I am replacing them?  I don't know anything about the differences, and am trying to keep costs down.

 

I plan on sanding them down to remove rough spots and I'll see what the wood underneath looks like.  I may re-paint them white or blue (just kidding!...some form of black) or if the wood is good, just give them a nice stain and finish.

 

I haven't checked the drivers yet, but I'm figuring they are old.  If I have to replace any, this will be a more costly project than I hoped, but if I do, I am open to suggestions on what is best.

 

The Xover is my main question, for anyone who can help.  Thanks in advance.

Edited by Ave Bona Cornwall
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You will find lots of opinions regarding crossovers, and lots of variation in cost. I like and use the Crites A4500, it crosses over to the tweeter a little lower than a regular type A. It does require replacing the K77 tweeter with a Crites tweeter. If you have a bigger budget, forum member Dean G makes higher end crossovers that get very good reviews.

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Keeping cost down seems to be a big issue for you, so here is what IMHO I would suggest from that perspective.  If you don't know if any of the drivers are good, plug them in and play them to find out first.  That should be your starting point.  (Hope they were a REALLY good bargain if you bought them without listening...)  Secondly, the crossovers may look bad (most old ones do), but doesn't mean they ARE bad.  Certainly for a short term solution, you can replace the caps with Dayton Premium Audio caps (1%), clean up the dust and crud, and go from there.  Have fun...a good winter project for you up there in the north woods!!

 

http://www.parts-express.com/cat/capacitors/68?N=21113+4294967118+4294967060&Ne=10166&Nrs=collection%28%29%2Frecord%5Bendeca%3Amatches%28.%2C%22P_PortalID%22%2C%221%22%29+and+endeca%3Amatches%28.%2C%22P_Searchable%22%2C%221%22%29%5D&PortalID=1

Edited by jimjimbo

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Replacing the caps with Daytons, Sonicaps, etc. is a good idea if you want to save money and you have a soldering iron. Since there is just three caps in the AA, I think, you could upgrade to a quietter cap with less distortion and still not spend a lot. If you want plug and play and can spend a little more talk to Dean here. I have been through A's, AL-3's and finally a custom setup from Dean in my LaScalas. I liked them so much I had him build another set for my K-horns.

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Guest Steven1963

Listen to them for a while before you make any decisions.  

 

^this. 

 

Then, if you decide to make changes to the networks and are still tight budget-wise you can replace only the capacitors with only a few 10s of $.  That's all that goes bad on those networks - everything else is fine. Doing it this way will give you a compass as to where you were coming from and where you went.

 

After that if you still feel you want some changes you can look at changing out complete networks (using the new caps you just bought, if you want.) 

 

I would recommend DeanG.  He did my Khorns and they sound very smooth with tons of detail and clarity. 

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Got any pictures? I just brought a beat to hell LaScala back from the dead here: https://community.klipsch.com/index.php?/topic/152257-badly-beat-up-lascala-restoration-completed/

 

Put a sock in the tweeter and listen to the squaker. Do the reverse, and check the tweeter. Stick your head down in the woofer doghouse and check it. If they are all kicking, then listen to them a while as people said. 

 

Eventually, take the whole speaker apart and cleaning, new seals in the woofer access panel, and new gasket in the squaker screw in part. Put new caps in the AA. Listen some more. 

 

If you don't like what you hear, think about what is missing. Some people like to add a sub. I'm partial to horn loaded subs with laScalas. That way you are 100% horn loaded. It does make a big difference.

 

All that stuff is cheap to do. I'm not saying not to buy networks, but until you listen to these a while, how will you know if you wasted the money. BTW, I love AA networks.

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I'm about to pick up a pair of not great looking La Scala's, and plan on putting some work into them.  I'm just looking for advice on a couple topics.

 

The crossovers (type AA) look pretty old and don't seem to be in great shape, so I figure I'll replace them.  Would Bob Crites AA crossover be better or ALK's universal economy?  Or should I be considering a different Xover (such as AL-3, A/4500, ALK slope) since I am replacing them?  I don't know anything about the differences, and am trying to keep costs down.

 

I plan on sanding them down to remove rough spots and I'll see what the wood underneath looks like.  I may re-paint them white or blue (just kidding!...some form of black) or if the wood is good, just give them a nice stain and finish.

 

I haven't checked the drivers yet, but I'm figuring they are old.  If I have to replace any, this will be a more costly project than I hoped, but if I do, I am open to suggestions on what is best.

 

The Xover is my main question, for anyone who can help.  Thanks in advance.

No matter what they look like, the autoformer and woofer inductors never go bad, but the capacitors do. Since the slopes are "first order" on the AA networks, you can save even more money by getting the 5% capacitors from Parts Express, instead of the 1%, which is overkill in this application.

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Thanks for all the advice.  I haven't bought them yet, but I was going to check all the drivers prior to buying.  And of course, I was going to hook them up and give them a listen before I replaced anything  :) 

 

I don't have high expectations based on the condition, but they are a good price and I figured I could put some time in to make them look at least twice as good cosmetically.  Just to plan ahead and while I am doing work and taking things apart, I wanted to get ideas lined up for the stuff that actually matters (opposed to the cosmetics).  If the tweeters are toast, I was going to consider Bob's tweets with the A/4500 since I have read a lot of glowing reviews.  Does Dean have a website, or do I just PM him?

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Guest Steven1963

It's better to contact Dean through this website, as he is more inclined to provide 'special assistance' through price discounts - although I do not promise anything and I certainly do not intend to speak for Dean.  His username is DeanG.

 

Last I heard him say he is very busy atm.

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Thanks for all the advice.  I haven't bought them yet, but I was going to check all the drivers prior to buying.  And of course, I was going to hook them up and give them a listen before I replaced anything  :)

 

I don't have high expectations based on the condition, but they are a good price and I figured I could put some time in to make them look at least twice as good cosmetically.  Just to plan ahead and while I am doing work and taking things apart, I wanted to get ideas lined up for the stuff that actually matters (opposed to the cosmetics).  If the tweeters are toast, I was going to consider Bob's tweets with the A/4500 since I have read a lot of glowing reviews.  Does Dean have a website, or do I just PM him?

  http://www.AletheiaAudio.com

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I bought a pair of 81 La Scalas about 2 months ago. After verifying all the drivers were good and listening for a few weeks I just replaced the 3 capacitors in each crossover.

 

If you can solder it is easy, replacing the entire crossover isn't needed unless you want something different.

 

I may look at additional bracing later.

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Steve, if you're still following -- do you prefer the sound on tap 3 with the resistor, or on tap 4 without the resistor?

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I don't know how to solder so recapping may be tricky for me.  Here's a pic of one of the crossovers.

attachicon.gifcrossover.jpg

Learning to solder is not that hard. But if you don't want to or don't want to spend the money for the tools I THINK Bob Crites will do the job for you. Also I believe there is a video on his site that steps you through the rebuild. Or maybe it is just a series of photos with explanations.

Edited by babadono

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I guess I didn't know Bob would rebuild the crossovers.  That may be good option since it is about 1/3rd the price of buying whole new ones.

 

If the forecasted rain holds off, I'm planning on picking these up on Saturday, and I'll try to keep the forum updated on my progress with them.  Thanks again.

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Guest Steven1963

Steve, if you're still following -- do you prefer the sound on tap 3 with the resistor, or on tap 4 without the resistor?

 

I haven't switched it from what you set it to.  I may be making the change soon, though.  I pulled the carpet out of the room and put in wood floors.  Now it doesn't sound the same and so maybe it's a good time to move to tap 4.  How exactly should I make this switch, Dean?

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