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LaScala 80s vintage - should I upgrade crossovers?


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7 hours ago, chapin99 said:


Thanks for reminding me to say. They sound fine, but sometimes I think the output of one is less than the other (but given the amount of vintage 4-channel equipment I run, one never knows if it is from the receiver, q8 deck or what and usually some button pushing and occasional deoxit helps, yet still I believe the sound it fainter on the right channel. The other confounding thing, of course, is that it is not ideal speaker placement for right channel due to medai storage in front of it. I will sometimes move my other system‚Äôs front right and toe-in the LaScala for better sound. And trust me, I have scoured my smaller home for some other place to store music, but the square footage is just not there. It may be just that periodic wanderlust to make a change and feel like my system is optimized, but I have always thought I would feel better if the two crossovers were identical. Maybe I should leave well enough alone? Something to consider as well.ūüėÄ

Thanks for the reply. Yes, it could be the different crossovers as you said. And certainly deoxit can well come into it with a whole host of symptoms. These guys will help sort it for you.

Cheers!

 

 

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On 5/9/2021 at 9:25 AM, Islander said:

My first Klipsch speakers were a pair of 1974 La Scalas, which are still in my system.  They came with AA crossovers, which have a good reputation, but from reading posts on the Forum, I learned that capacitors don’t last forever, while most of the other crossover components do keep performing well for decades.  At the time, the speakers were 32 years old.

 

I ordered a Sonicap crossover set from Bob Crites (RIP), and while I was at it, I also ordered a pair of his CT125 tweeters.  The reason for that was that I’d tested the output of both tweeters, and noticed a difference of 2-3 dB between them.  I reasoned that could not be good for stereo imaging.  When I checked the new CT125 tweeters, they were within 1/2 to 1 dB, which was clearly better, plus their frequency response goes much higher than the stock K-77 tweeters.

 

To be sure which new parts made which changes, I put in one pair/set first. ¬†At this point, I don‚Äôt remember which I did first, but when I replaced the old ‚Äútin-can‚ÄĚ caps with the new Sonicaps, the sound was definitely improved, mostly in improved clarity. ¬†Three days later (or maybe earlier. ¬†There was a 3-day space; I‚Äôm sure of that.), I installed the new tweeters, and they clearly improved the sound as well.

 

I was very happy with both changes.  More recently, I’ve learned that Crites Speakers now carries CT120 tweeters, which are said to be an improvement over the earlier CT125 models.

 

Your logic of wanting both speakers to be identical is totally sensible.  In a stereo system, identical performance from each speaker is assumed and required.  As for soldering, the more you do it, the easier and better it gets.  It’s an idea to read a bit about it, so you can learn the most effective ways to make good solder joints.

 

Finally, welcome to the Forum!  It’s a great place to discuss audio and learn more about it, and a great place to just hang out.

Thanks! I appreciate the wisdom here!

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On 5/9/2021 at 9:25 AM, Islander said:

My first Klipsch speakers were a pair of 1974 La Scalas, which are still in my system.  They came with AA crossovers, which have a good reputation, but from reading posts on the Forum, I learned that capacitors don’t last forever, while most of the other crossover components do keep performing well for decades.  At the time, the speakers were 32 years old.

 

I ordered a Sonicap crossover set from Bob Crites (RIP), and while I was at it, I also ordered a pair of his CT125 tweeters.  The reason for that was that I’d tested the output of both tweeters, and noticed a difference of 2-3 dB between them.  I reasoned that could not be good for stereo imaging.  When I checked the new CT125 tweeters, they were within 1/2 to 1 dB, which was clearly better, plus their frequency response goes much higher than the stock K-77 tweeters.

 

To be sure which new parts made which changes, I put in one pair/set first. ¬†At this point, I don‚Äôt remember which I did first, but when I replaced the old ‚Äútin-can‚ÄĚ caps with the new Sonicaps, the sound was definitely improved, mostly in improved clarity. ¬†Three days later (or maybe earlier. ¬†There was a 3-day space; I‚Äôm sure of that.), I installed the new tweeters, and they clearly improved the sound as well.

 

I was very happy with both changes.  More recently, I’ve learned that Crites Speakers now carries CT120 tweeters, which are said to be an improvement over the earlier CT125 models.

 

Your logic of wanting both speakers to be identical is totally sensible.  In a stereo system, identical performance from each speaker is assumed and required.  As for soldering, the more you do it, the easier and better it gets.  It’s an idea to read a bit about it, so you can learn the most effective ways to make good solder joints.

 

Finally, welcome to the Forum!  It’s a great place to discuss audio and learn more about it, and a great place to just hang out.

Thanks, Islander!

 

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A basic idea just occurred to me.  To see why one speaker has lower output, one place to start is to check the output of each driver.  Do you have a sound pressure level (SPL) meter?  They're not expensive (under $100) and can be very useful.

 

I assume you've already tried swapping the speaker cables at the amplifier, to see is the problem is with one speaker, or the output of the amplifier that's driving it.   If the problem switches sides, you know that the speaker is not the problem.  Once you've done that, if the problem does seem to be in the speaker, you could try to see if the problem is with the tweeter, the squawker (sometimes called the mid driver by non-Klipsch types), or the woofer.  Just stuff a towel in the squawker horns of both speakers, to muffle them, then you can check the output of the tweeters.  If they don't match, there's your culprit, except tweeters don't carry much of the load.  Next, muffle the tweeters, so you can check the output of the squawkers.  The K-55 squawkers seem to be pretty reliable, but sometimes they might need to have their diaphragms replaced.  

 

Finally, if you muffle both the tweeters and the squawkers, you can check the output of the woofers.  As Paul Klipsch liked to say, "We live in the midrange.", and that's where a lot of the sound comes from.  The K-33 woofers are generally pretty reliable, but you never know.

 

I hope all that didn't give you a headache, and if you already knew all that basic stuff, I didn't mean to talk down to you in any way.  I have little idea of what you do know, so it seemed best to cover the basics, so you don't overlook the obvious.  Everybody does that sometimes, including me.

 

Anyway, I hope you get your La Scalas sorted.  They're great speakers.

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Thanks, Islander for breaking things down for me. I know just enough to be dangerous and may well start with just an app spl meter to see if it reveals anything. I have heard they can be good enough to use. And, your tone was friendly and kind, so thanks for taking your time to respond. I will get to the bottom of it for sure. Take care.

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