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Pilgrimage 2019 Chief Bonehead chats: LaScala/Jubes

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1 hour ago, Bill W. said:

I have said this before and still believe it is true..... To successfully launch the Jubilee as the premier home speaker will require something we have not seen yet, a state-of-the-art hf horn of a size that is between the 402 and the 510. This will overcome the size objections which would limit sales of a 402 design and overcome the performance limitations of pattern control on the 510.

 

Has anybody tried running the 510 vertically? The horizontal pattern is constrained by the room walls anyway, so they will take over where the short axis of the horn loses control. Meanwhile, the long axis of the horn, and its attendant pattern control, will now be in the vertical direction.

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On 7/8/2019 at 11:21 AM, Dave A said:

I find it very interesting though that people like HDBRbuilder choose plywood.

My good buddy if off to speaker building competition at Midwest Audio Fest, sponsored by Parts Express. He used Baltic Birch Plywood for construction, BUT, also used MDF on the Right and Left sides so he would get the SMOOTHEST Automotive Paint job possible for those surfaces only. The speakers are gorgeous with solid Cherry Wood fronts and tops.

IMG_1789.JPG

IMG_1790.JPG

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Has anybody tried running the 510 vertically? The horizontal pattern is constrained by the room walls anyway, so they will take over where the short axis of the horn loses control. Meanwhile, the long axis of the horn, and its attendant pattern control, will now be in the vertical direction.



If anyone is near Orlando or Deltona Florida that has a pair setup I could come over with my mic and run REW and get some numbers
A friend of mine, also a member here, has a pair but is is two hours one way from me. Maybe the next time I go see him he will let me run before and after test with his 904’s with these horns he has
I don’t like posting someone’s name on open fourm unless they are chatting on the same post





Dollar for dollar Klipsch has no equals
Name one other speaker company that can build a speaker and keep working like new after 45 plus years of service. Answer NO ONE !!!!!!

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1 hour ago, ClaudeJ1 said:

My good buddy if off to speaker building competition at Midwest Audio Fest, sponsored by Parts Express. He used Baltic Birch Plywood for construction, BUT, also used MDF on the Right and Left sides so he would get the SMOOTHEST Automotive Paint job possible for those surfaces only. The speakers are gorgeous with solid Cherry Wood fronts and tops.

Say that's what wood grain filler is for and you can avoid that sad glue + sawdust junk. But what do I know. All the best speaker builders use it, or so I have been told.

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49 minutes ago, Dave A said:

Say that's what wood grain filler is for and you can avoid that sad glue + sawdust junk. But what do I know. All the best speaker builders use it, or so I have been told.

Go back and check out the photos  I uploaded.

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1 hour ago, ClaudeJ1 said:

Go back and check out the photos  I uploaded.

Well you know me Claude I lead an MDF free life so I can't get excited even if it is pretty. 

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45 minutes ago, Dave A said:

Well you know me Claude I lead an MDF free life so I can't get excited even if it is pretty. 

Yes, well it's just a surface veneer on the sides for cosmetics to hold a $1,100 paint job. The entire structure is BB 18 and 12 mm.

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On 7/8/2019 at 11:21 AM, Dave A said:

Who knows what the real results were and that is the problem with second hand info. I find it very interesting though that people like HDBRbuilder choose plywood. It is not all about just water resistance either and read his comments regarding veneer delamination. I have heard this from others also where speakers were in controlled environments since bought new. Being a hands on guy myself in both repair and restoration of speakers and the building of some now too I have solid reasons for not doing what bean counters and their coterie of sawdust lovers do.

 

 

  Why are you having such a hard time believing that MDF is a better choice when every speaker manufacturer under the sun (minus one or two) who uses wood uses this material?  I find the claims that it is a better choice because of rigidity, consistency  and sound characteristics are more believable than your assertion that it is chosen simply to save a few dollars.   Heck, if spending the extra bucks for plywood gave Klipsch a bragging right they would certainly have chosen it  and made hay about it in there brochures etc.  But they didn’t because they know better 

 

 And you still haven’t addressed my question about your extraordinary concerns about water resistance. What other component that is part of our hi-fi set ups was ever engineered with water resistance in mind? Not our amplifiers, turntables, tape decks, flatscreen TVs, etc. None of these need to be water resistant so why would speakers? 

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6 hours ago, ODS123 said:

 

  Why are you having such a hard time believing that MDF is a better choice when every speaker manufacturer under the sun (minus one or two) who uses wood uses this material?  I find the claims that it is a better choice because of rigidity, consistency  and sound characteristics are more believable than your assertion that it is chosen simply to save a few dollars.   Heck, if spending the extra bucks for plywood gave Klipsch a bragging right they would certainly have chosen it  and made hay about it in there brochures etc.  But they didn’t because they know better 

 

 And you still haven’t addressed my question about your extraordinary concerns about water resistance. What other component that is part of our hi-fi set ups was ever engineered with water resistance in mind? Not our amplifiers, turntables, tape decks, flatscreen TVs, etc. None of these need to be water resistant so why would speakers? 

Say if you are ever in the area stop in and hear a real system. Then we can migrate to the ridge top for a little target practice, carcinogenic bar-b-cue and Tannerite.

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On 7/18/2019 at 2:02 PM, ODS123 said:

Heck, if spending the extra bucks for plywood gave Klipsch a bragging right they would certainly have chosen it  and made hay about it in there brochures etc.  But they didn’t because they know better 

PWK sold the company to cousin Fred in 1989. Before that, I don't believe he ever gave MDF "house room." When I toured the plant in 1985, I didn't see ANY MDF whatsoever, anywhere.

 

I know PWK hated the stuff, but he also hated plywood with voids. I remember Woody Jackson showing me a whole bunch of routed KG-4 front panels that had voids. He said they were being shipped back to the manufacturer for credit.

 

There were 3 distinct Klipsch companies. Klipsch and Associates, Klipsch Group, and the current company owned by the same people that own AIWA.

 

Your opinion on MDF is part engineering, part marketing, and part bean counter. But if Paul were alive and still owned the company, it would be strictly plywood construction, be my bet.

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16 hours ago, ClaudeJ1 said:

PWK sold the company to cousin Fred in 1989. Before that, I don't believe he ever gave MDF "house room." When I toured the plant in 1985, I didn't see ANY MDF whatsoever, anywhere.

 

I know PWK hated the stuff, but he also hated plywood with voids. I remember Woody Jackson showing me a whole bunch of routed KG-4 front panels that had voids. He said they were being shipped back to the manufacturer for credit.

 

There were 3 distinct Klipsch companies. Klipsch and Associates, Klipsch Group, and the current company owned by the same people that own AIWA.

 

Your opinion on MDF is part engineering, part marketing, and part bean counter. But if Paul were alive and still owned the company, it would be strictly plywood construction, be my bet.

 

So what about all the voids NOT discovered by the router?  Voids in the middle of a panel?  Aren't they apt to cause resonances?

 

Sorry, not buying it. ..And for all the reasons I've mentioned before.   You're speculating as to what PWK would chose today.  What is not speculation is that almost EVERY other speaker company uses MDF, including Richard Vandersteen who is just as committed to the quality of his speakers as we knew PWK to be.

 

 

 

 

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For what it is worth, when I was sanding my La Scala splits bass cabs, which are factory, I encountered obvious voids in the sidewalls approximately the size of half-dollars. I could hear the void by just tapping my fingers on it.

I considered removing the top layer of ply to fill with putty but decided that they had always been there and I’d best leave well enough alone.

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1 hour ago, ODS123 said:

 

So what about all the voids NOT discovered by the router?  Voids in the middle of a panel?  Aren't they apt to have an effect of resonance dampening, etc..

 

Sorry, not buying it. ..And for all the reasons I've mentioned before.   You're speculating as to what PWK would chose today.  What is not speculation is that almost EVERY other speaker company uses MDF, including Richard Vandersteen who is just as committed to the quality of his speakers as we knew PWK to be.

 

 

 

 

Good morning OD and great to see you flogging your tired horse again! Cant say I have found any voids in Baltic Birch yet but the Chinese version of it is full of them. I expect that from them though. Remember to stop in and hear a real system when you have a chance.

 

1 hour ago, codewritinfool said:

For what it is worth, when I was sanding my La Scala splits bass cabs, which are factory, I encountered obvious voids in the sidewalls approximately the size of half-dollars. I could hear the void by just tapping my fingers on it.

I considered removing the top layer of ply to fill with putty but decided that they had always been there and I’d best leave well enough alone.

I did not pay a lot of attention to the plywood used in La Scalas until I considered making my own speakers and alterations and then this was what I saw. On the last five sets of LSI's and LS's here the ply's in the plywood were not like the ply's in the Baltic birch and were typical of what you would see in regular plywood at the lumber yard. I have had a number of sets before this but did not pay attention to them. I remember reading somewhere that Klipsch used Fir plywood too and this might be what these had. After having cut into a number of sheets of true Baltic Birch I have yet to find a void. The Chinese stuff however was full of it and even the wood was a different density and much lighter than the real thing and had a different tone to it if you would hold a piece up in the air and tap on it. Grossly inferior material.

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4 hours ago, codewritinfool said:

my La Scala splits bass cabs, which are factory...

 

2 hours ago, Dave A said:

I remember reading somewhere that Klipsch used Fir plywood too and this might be what these had.

 

My industrial La Scala cabinet plywood appears to be Fir. The woodgrain looks different than the birch La Scalas

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5 hours ago, ODS123 said:

 

So what about all the voids NOT discovered by the router?  Voids in the middle of a panel?  Aren't they apt to cause resonances?

 

Sorry, not buying it. ..And for all the reasons I've mentioned before.   You're speculating as to what PWK would chose today.  What is not speculation is that almost EVERY other speaker company uses MDF, including Richard Vandersteen who is just as committed to the quality of his speakers as we knew PWK to be.

 

 

 

 

Jim Salk of Salk Sound is an acquaintance of mine for several years. We were in the same building for about a year and I still use his test music. He makes his speakers out of MDF exclusively, but covers them with some exotic hardwood VENEERS. This is how most speaker manufacturers make speakers.

 

I'm not trying to SELL you anything, so when you say "I'm not buying it," is like calling me a liar, which I don't appreciate. I simply don't give a rat's butt what materials a speaker company uses to build electro-acoustic transducer systems, or what technology is used to "move the air." It's their business, not mine.

 

PWK was known as "irascible" by those who knew him (former K&A President Bob Moers, who I met told me so). I verified, conversationally, during my Klipsch tours, with a few employees, that very same statement "changes come slow at Klipsch." I'm pretty sure NO MDF was used prior to 1989, while PWK still owned the company. After that it was out of his decision making powers and he remained as a Marketing Impressario, among other things.

 

As a former Quality Engineer, I can say it all depends on the specific definition of quality you speak of. Nonetheless, my statement was NOT speculation, but observable FACTS, with a finite timeline, which ended in 1989. No more no less. So the only speculation here has come from YOU , not me.

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On 7/18/2019 at 12:02 PM, ODS123 said:

And you still haven’t addressed my question about your extraordinary concerns about water resistance. What other component that is part of our hi-fi set ups was ever engineered with water resistance in mind? Not our amplifiers, turntables, tape decks, flatscreen TVs, etc. None of these need to be water resistant so why would speakers? 

Lots (and lots) of speakers set directly on the floor. Seeing water damaged speakers, with high-water staining across the exterior cabinets and screens is not unusual. Some people place components on the floor, but I don't see this as often as speakers... I typically see other components on a rack, shelf, cabinet or something... so, there is that difference.

 

But while we're on the subject, PWK did write down his other reasons for avoiding MDF: One, in particular, was the ability of an edge to hold a mechanical fastener. Something to consider; especially with larger, heavier speakers.

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9 minutes ago, Endo said:

Lots (and lots) of speakers set directly on the floor. Seeing water damaged speakers, with high-water staining across the exterior cabinets and screens is not unusual. Some people place components on the floor, but I don't see this as often as speakers... I typically see other components on a rack, shelf, cabinet or something... so, there is that difference.

 

But while we're on the subject, PWK did write down his other reasons for avoiding MDF: One, in particular, was the ability of an edge to hold a mechanical fastener. Something to consider; especially with larger, heavier speakers.

He actually tested it, and MDF's failure to "hold a screw on edge, at an angle" made it 7 times worse than plywood, performance wise. It's part of his "Dope From Hope" and Klipsch papers, which he Autographed for me, by request,  even before we ever met in person. There's not way they could build a Production Klipschorn economically with that material at the quality levels that PWK defined as good. His company, therefore, his opinion did prevail.

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2 hours ago, ClaudeJ1 said:

He actually tested it, and MDF's failure to "hold a screw on edge, at an angle" made it 7 times worse than plywood

It's not an issue with glue.  Production methods have changed over the years.  I'll bet he never envisioned holding speakers together with box tape during assembly either.

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