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GlennyC

La Scala AL5 What a Painful Experience

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So, now 3 different PEQ frequencies - all below 300 Hz to match the Left and Right channels...

La Scala AL5 PEQ F3.jpg

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Since people are posting results with various EQs, here is a pair of Klipschorns with Audyssey Flat (an automated EQ using hundreds of points), using 8 (Audyssey) microphone positions.  The REW calibrated mic is slightly off-axis to both speakers, because the lines perpendicular to the baffle boards cross about 7 feet in front of the listener.    IGNORE the red curve.  I can't remove it; it is a Belle Klipsch in a very bad position in the room.  I would run new curves, but my mike preamp conked back in 2011, and my calibrated mic won't work using USB.  The Green and Blue curves are the Left and Right Klipschorns.  What's the point?  While the automatic Audyssey FLAT EQ fails to EQ the two Khorns absolutely equally, it does make the two tweeters (K77F) virtually identical above (and even slightly below) the 4.5K Hz crossover point.  In practice, the Left/Right balance, overall sound, and imaging are all pretty good (to my ears).  I've never been sure what causes the 43 Hz peak. 

873744216_audflatt0b0.jpg.e5a96e4cf4b2a72caa4cd8e629d8f896.jpg

 

 

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This is the same graph as above with 1/3 smoothing instead of 1/12. I can see why Chris A recommends 1/6 or finer. 1/3 hides a lot of warts. Thanks to all for the great guidance. I am happy I was able to absorb a portion of it because I will be able to enhance my listening experience substantially now. Plus I was able to fix my tweeter based on the guidance. Great people on this forum!!!

308F6660-4873-4ACB-B3A9-C928DF679D25.jpeg

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Ooooh!  Looking purty!!  I'm SURE you can hear that difference. 

 

Is there a wall or object 9" away from the squawker?  The dips at 1500 and 3000 might be a reflection. 

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On 5/2/2020 at 2:27 PM, GlennyC said:

So I just bought and set up my new pair of La Scala AL5 Natural Cherry A Stock speakers. I do have to say that Klipsch has made it a very very painful experience for me. I wanted the best my room size and configuration could handle and for me it was the AL5s. I love the sound and the cabinets are beautiful. The very painful part was the $12,000 plus tax about $800. New La Scala II if you find them go for half that. I really feel I have been taken advantage of on the pricing. The depreciation of these will be brutal. I mean I will probably lose 2/3rd of my purchase price in very short order. Three or four years to loose $8000. It really is abusive. Comments?

My unsolicited $0.02:

 

No disrespect is intended so please take none.

 

IMO....First rule of buying gear. Any gear. Buy what you can afford. Buy what you can afford to sell. I would pay about 10K for a brand new A stock pair. If I can't find a stocking dealer for that...well I know I can.

 

In the end enjoy what you have and ditch the overpay concern. You have wonderful speakers for the rest of your life. Focus on that.

Buck

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Hate on me. Now that I’ve got my AL5s working properly, I ran an A/B test with a switch box to test for listening differences between the AL5s and my Heresy IIIs. The AL5s are more efficient than the Heresy IIIs therefore the AL5s are louder when switching to them. However, luckily I have a gain switch on my amplifier that will boost output in 6 dB increments. So, when I switch to the Heresy IIIs, I also bump the amplifier output by 6 dB. Switch to the AL5s, drop the amp by 6 dB. This gives a great comparison. Results... man for the extra $13,000 the differences are minimal. (I have a powered subwoofer to augment the low end and can’t hear above 10,000 Hz) I have to believe the differences between a La Scala II and a La Scala AL5 are even much more so minimal (to me). La Scala II is $5000 used. I paid $13,000 with tax for the AL5s. I have time to return the AL5s still. Decision to follow. 

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E8897D66-B368-40EC-AB11-1DF7773D7792.jpeg

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Thanks for the well thought out comparison.   I’d be looking for the receipt, but don’t let me influence your decision.

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38 minutes ago, GlennyC said:

I have to believe the differences between a La Scala II and a La Scala AL5 are even much more so minimal (to me). La Scala II is $5000 used. I paid $13,000 with tax for the AL5s. I have time to return the AL5s still. Decision to follow. 

Recommend you return them.  There is only so much you can do with passive crossovers or even a slightly upgraded tweeter (if it has one--like the latest Khorn has).   If you can't hear the difference between LSIIs (any model) and HIIIs, this is a good way to help yourself feel better about what you had before your latest purchase.

 

You did figure out how to measure your loudspeaker output, so perhaps using some of those discretionary funds to instead work on your room acoustics (you're presently in a "target rich" environment in that regard) and further dial-in what you've retained will improve your satisfaction level. I think you can spent that money more effectively and get better sound quality.  For instance:  https://community.klipsch.com/index.php?/topic/117543-active-bi-ampingtri-amping-faq/page/16/&tab=comments#comment-2494227

 

There are other more effective ways to significantly improve sound quality than buying AL5s, IMO.

 

Chris

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This is a long thread, you are unhappy you blame Klipsch for making you buy speakers you feel are not worth it. Can you tell us what the rest of your system is comprised of starting at the front end (transport, DAC Preamp cables power cords and any tweaks power filters regeneration devices etc.). You are telling us that the performance is not up to the price you paid. It has been my experience that much performance is lost in either poor set up and or poor choices of system gear. I do not doubt that you are not getting the performance that you expected and that you are disappointed, but how much of that is on Klipsch and how much is on you is a different matter all together.

   It does not sound as if you would be willing to spend more to improve your system to achieve the desired end result you want so if you keep the speakers improvements will most likely have to be made with working with what you have and adjusting the set up and or in selling possibly unsuitable pieces of gear and purchasing other used ones better suited to build a system with the characteristics you are after.

This could also be a case of you over reaching your capabilities to critically hear and to set up a system of this caliber or it could be that Klipsch built a very expensive loudspeaker which does not perform anywhere near what it costs to buy. If you were to ask me I don't think you purchased the right speakers for you and that is all that is wrong. I have witnessed audiophiles parachuting ultra expensive loudspeakers into a system and not being happy with the results this is not uncommon and in reality it is rarely the speakers fault though you will not often convince the owner of this who then goes on to blame the product and or the company. Sound familiar?

I think you should return your new LaScala and get some help to build a system that does what you want within a budget you are comfortable with. Since you spent 12K (and you get it back) that spent on a new system should get you all you want and if you add on any extra cash you get back from selling old gear not to used in the new system you will be ahead of the game or no worse off if you have return shipping to cover). The experience while a lot of work will be worth it and you will come out the other side wiser and a much more experienced listener and you will have a system that you love.

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HP EliteDesk 800 G2 PC running Tidal Master Quality Software -> Mytek USB Cable -> iFi iPurifier2 USB filter -> Mytek Liberty DAC -> TRS/XLR Cables ->

B&K Refetence 50 Preamplifier (Direct Mode) -> XLR Cables -> Accuphase A-30 Amplifier -> 14 gauge speaker wire -> Klipsch La Scala AL5s

 

(Note: I also have a Behringer DEQ2496 between the Preamp and Amp that I can turn off to make it just a pass through. In addition on the subwoofer out of my Preamp, I have a Klipsch R-112SW subwoofer)

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14 gauge?  Oh my, that’s the big problem right there!

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8 minutes ago, jimjimbo said:

14 gauge?  Oh my, that’s the big problem right there!

I’ll get right on it!

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Having followed this thread from your telling title, my two cents is return them. You are obviously unhappy & second guessing your purchase. You got off on the “wrong foot” with the disconnected tweeter and that negatively flavored your impression of the speakers since even though they appear to be functioning properly now. It's likely nothing will get that from the corners of your mind. I still have that attitude about a particular model car I bought years ago regardless of its current reviews and stature.

 

As you seem to view your Heresys favorably; consider swapping the La Scalas for a set of Cornwall IVs. You still get a “big” speaker that is not overpowered by the scale of your cabinet, has almost universally praised sound quality and you get about half your money back,. What’s not to like?

 

The added bonus is that in a few weeks, someone can get on “open box” deal on a pair of walnut AL5s from Crutchfield.

 

Just remember, all this supposed to be fun.

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On 5/27/2020 at 4:24 AM, garyrc said:

I've never been sure what causes the 43 Hz peak. 

Probably the room.

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On 5/28/2020 at 6:57 AM, Chris A said:

 

 

There are other more effective ways to significantly improve sound quality than buying AL5s, IMO.

 

Chris

I would think he would gain in owning a pair of Jubilees ---or even khorns

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31 minutes ago, RandyH said:

I would think he would gain in owning a pair of Jubilees ---or even khorns

Sonically, yes. But looking at his wall & cabinet neither would be a particularly good fit. I faced a similar quandary when I wanted K'horns (still do). No corners and no place for false corners.

Sometimes you have to work within the physical constraints of your home.

 

Why haven't we suggested he build an acoustically correct addition to his house? :laugh:

 

Mike

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7 hours ago, michaelwardjoines said:

Sonically, yes. But looking at his wall & cabinet neither would be a particularly good fit.

I find that putting the electronics, furniture, etc. between the loudspeakers is not a very good idea--for more reasons than just fitting the loudspeakers on the front wall without regard to how they sound shoehorned into the remaining space. 

 

It's usually much better to put those items further back and to one side--farther away from the near field of loudspeakers (generally defined as within 4-5 feet). Generally, when the center of the front wall is cleared, suddenly there is plenty of space for loudspeakers like Jubilees and/or K-402-MEHs. 

 

My listening room is 15.5' wide, and I've got plenty of room for Jubilees and a center K-402-MEH.  I could have also handled a third Jubilee (instead of the MEH) if the hearth wasn't in the middle of the front wall--and I probably would have gone that direction if the hearth wasn't there.  As it is however, I discovered the performance advantage of the K-402-MEH, and shortening down the K-402s on top of the Jub bass bins. 

 

Chris

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6 hours ago, Chris A said:

It's usually much better to put those items further back and to one side--farther away from the near field of loudspeakers

 

Antediluvians like me remember when nearly all layouts were that way, before people got paranoid about speaker cable length.  My layout is still that way (but with relatively inexpensive low capacitance, low resistance 12 gauge cable, instead of the 14 gauge lamp cord my friends and I used to use which was not audibly different) and it sounds great.  There are no pilot lights or LEDs up front to distract, no guests straining their eyes to see where the tone controls (!) are set, and no momentary obstructing of the speakers by someone walking in front of them after putting on a disk.

 

 

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18 hours ago, garyrc said:

Antediluvians like me remember when nearly all layouts were that way, before people got paranoid about speaker cable length.

:smile:

 

I find that most all the discussions on audio forums dominated by those people that mention that "it sounds better with less toe-in--or even toe-out", when...as one finally gets to see a picture of their setups...they have a great deal of acoustic reflectors between their stereo loudspeakers in the form of cabinets, electronics boxes, and other furniture--all of which spell major trouble with resulting soundstage issues.

 

It's like the light bulb turns off (i.e., the owner ceases thinking about what's causing his hi-fi sound quality issues) when the loudspeakers are just plunked in the room, either by some weird formula (i.e., a formula not recommended by PWK) or just shoved into the little cubbyholes left over after they've bought their huge "electronics cabinet" that dominates the entire room, and takes up all the breathing space on the front wall.  It's like--room acoustics are afterthoughts.

 

PWK used to talk about toe-in in his Dope from Hope and other articles (JAES, etc.) assuming that most people already knew to place their loudspeakers close to the room corners on the long wall, i.e., far enough from any front wall reflections of furniture and electronics to mitigate nearfield reflection issues--as he always recommended strongly.

 

Chris

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Life is full of compromises... just like listening spaces.

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