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Sonic differences between a 1984 Cornwall 1 vs 1975 Cornwall 1?? Would one vintage be more desirable than the other?.


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Since I would assume that you are considering purchasing one of these pairs.....Do you know if either one has had crossover updates?  Any driver changes, diaphragm changes, etc?  Are they both the same finish? (Oak, birch, walnut, etc?)  Cosmetic condition?


Cornwall timeline:



  • Oct 1959: The Cornwall is introduced as the world's second commercially produced center speaker. A speaker with higher output capability than the Heresy was needed when used in three speaker arrays between Klipschorn’s. Component designations: Woofer EV 15WK, Midrange K-1000 Horn and University SAHF Driver, Tweeter K-77
  • Late 1959: Transition to the K-33-J Woofer (Jensen)
  • 1959 - 1961: Sporadic transition to the K-55-V mid-range driver (Atlas)
  • Jan 1963: The K-1000 diffraction type midrange horn was replaced with the exponential K-600 horn with a lower (600 Hz) cutoff.
  • Sept 1967: Transition to the K-33-M. The records are not clear as to the origin of this driver but it is believed to be an Eminence driver with an Alnico magnet.
  • Jan 1968: Transition to The K-33-P Woofer (CTS Paducah KY)
  • 1974: The horizontal version of the Cornwall is discontinued
  • 1974: K-56 mid-range driver (Electrovoice 1828) is used for a short period as a temporary replacement as the supply of K-55-V drivers was interrupted.
  • 1975: Transition to The K-33-B Woofer (CTS Brownsville TX)
  • 1975-1979: K-33-E and the K-33-B were used interchangeably.
  • 1979: The Eminence K-33-E woofer is used exclusively
  • June 1981: The updated B2 network, with steeper crossover slopes is phased in with no changes to the K-33-E, K-55-V and K-77-M drivers.
  • Oct 1981 - March 1983: The transition between four different iterations of the midrange driver from revolving sources occurs during this period. The original K-55-V was changed to a K-51-V (10/19/81) This marked the first time in the Cornwall's history that it used a driver set that differed from that of the Klipschorn. The K-51-V was then changed to the K-55-G (essentially a ceramic magnet version of the Atlas Alnico K-55-V). The K-55-G was then changed to the Hepner built K-52-H and finally the Klipsch built K-52-K.
  • Mar 1983: The B-3 network and the K-52 midrange driver starts to be used in this model.  Component designations were: Woofer Eminence K-33-E, Midrange K-57-K (K-600 Aluminum horn and K-52-K driver with the threaded snout), Tweeter K-77-M and B-3 network.
  • Jan 1986: The Cornwall II is introduced featuring front mounted drivers to reduce baffle induced diffraction effects. Component designations were: Woofer Eminence K-34-E (K-33-E with a dressy pad ring), Midrange K-57-K (K-601 plastic horn and K-52-K driver), Tweeter K-79-K (K-75-K horn and K-79 driver) and CW II network.
  • 1990: The Cornwall II is discontinued
  • Mar 2006: The Cornwall III is introduced marking the end of the Cornwall's 15 year absence from the market. This version utilizes the Klipschorn woofer, the horn and driver set from the Heresy III (featuring Titanium diaphragms and a Tractrix® tweeter horn) and bi-wire inputs. Component designations are: Woofer K-33-E, Midrange K-53-Ti (K-701 horn and K-53-Ti driver), Tweeter K-107-Ti (K-79-T horn and K-100-Ti driver).
  • 2008+: There have been a number of newer models produced, and Klipsch has transitioned the crossovers to a more modern design. For information on the recent changes, please go to the website (Klipsch.com) for product information.
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I have both '76 and '84 Cornwalls. Scientifically, our "audio memory" isn't quite as precise as we'd all like to believe, but . . . . I haven't sat mine side-by-side to A/B them but my go-to demo record (Speakers Corner "Crime Of The Century") sounds really excellent through both.


The '84 has a smooth plastic/resin K601 midrange horn and K-57 bolt-on driver and B-3 crossover while the '75-'76 have slightly rougher textured metal K-600 threaded horn and K55 screw-on driver. But again, listening separately to the same record they both sounded great. My '76 have Dean G's  "B" crossover, the '84 have Crites' B-3. Both have Crites' replacement T120 tweeters.


For the ease of possible future upgrades I would go with the '75s.

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I own a pair of 1984 cornwall 1 in walnut.

They were stock, I did the crites upgrade on the crossovers. I saw a pair for sale locally that are also walnut from 1975. These are stock. However I am open to upgrading components.  I was curious with the same upgrades done to both, if there were sonic differences and if one model was better than the other. Sometimes newer is better, sometimes not..


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  • 2 weeks later...

I first heard Klipsch in the late '70s, so I would pick the 1975 sound.  For me the K-33-E, K-55-V, and K-77-M ARE the Klipsch sound. 


And I love going to Regal Cinemas and hearing my den with strangers in it.  those systems must be vastly different, but still sound "right". 

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The first pair of Cornwall's to change my life were '84's with the B-3 crossover, square magnet k33, k-57/k601 and square magnet k-77's. They were black though... so when a pair of walnut '79's came up I grabbed 'em.


The '79's had the B crossover, k-55/metal k600horns and round magnet k-77's. They didn't stay long after a pair of walnut '86 Cornwall 2's fell into my life.


Compared to the '84's, I found the '79's noticeably less fun to listen to.


Had I not first heard the '84's I would have likely kept the '79's though. And eventually Fastrac'd them... sigh!






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That is where I was going with the initial question, JJK. There have been so many changes over the years, I was wondering if all were for the best..Ultimately I guess it comes down to personal preference, room arrangements and stereo equipment setups.  

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  • 4 years later...

I purchased 2 pair of Cp1's about 5 years ago off craigslist,  complete,  minus the tweeters): , they  were rescued from a storage unit with standing water 1 inch deep. I have spent the last 4 years reconstructing the 3/4 in.  marine grade plywood, and replaced all caps in each crossover, I have looked high and low for the original tweeters,  but always miss them on " epray," have spoken with Crites and his advice was "keep watching the usual suspects,  audiokarma, spray, and craigslist .I currently am using electro voice

K33s, just because I couldn't wait any longer. 

I LOVE THESE SPEAKERS.    I also have a pair of early Khorns,(60's)and another pair of Cornwall decorators, unfinished raw wood. In my bedroom are kg4's. As Paul reportedly stated "great sound, No bullshit."

......any way , I digress, my cp1s are gonna stay unfinished,  no black tough coating,  they are gorgeous as is. Thanks to everyone  who helped make all of his "babies"   from a fellow arkansawyer "yee,


"Long may you run."


L. Snow gravette ar.

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