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Your Favorite Klipsch Speaker Experiences


CWelsh
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I'm sure everyone has one or more stories. There is an old topic on First Klipsch Experience, but I'm interested in hearing peoples favorite experiences which may or may not be one and the same. I have two favorite experiences and I will start with the earliest.

 

Back in the early 70s, there was an audio store in Des Moines, Iowa called Audiolabs (still around, but the focus is more on HT today). I spent enough time there that I got to know some of the staff reasonably well. One of the guys who worked evenings had a full-time job and worked at Audiolabs primarily for the access to high-end equipment and the employee discount to feed is audio addiction. If I came in while he was working, he would generally grab me as soon as I walked in the door and drag me into one of the demo rooms to show me whatever new piece of equipment had most recently fired his passion. One time it was a pair of Klipschorns powered by a massive Audio Research amp.

 

My friend sat me in the sweet spot then dropped the needle on ELP's Karn Evil 9. It was loud. It was clean. It sounded absolutely amazing! I had never heard anything like that coming out of speakers and I was hooked. Of course, a setup like that was so far out of my price range it wasn't even in the realm of consideration. Plus, I was living in a small apartment with a young wife and a baby, so yeah... Still, that was the beginning of my desire to someday own Klipschorns. I probably never will, but I do at least have Fortes.

 

There is a funny follow-up to my story. A couple of weeks later, I took my younger brother to the store and ask my friend if he would play the Klipschorns for him. He looked sheepish and said he was banned from demoing them because he had flicked a piece of dust off the stylus while the amp was cranked and blew out both of the HF drivers. Even with his employee discount, he said, it was going to take him a while to pay off that little mistake.

 

 

Let's hear your stories.

 

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When I was around 16 long haired punk ...lol. Got my mom to take me to stereo bug audio store. Just so happened Paul was there. He talked to me as an adult gave me a hand full of Bullshit buttons. We listened to K horns,,,Belles. Decided then I was buying Klipsch, Later in the 80s I wrote a letter to Klipsch asking about a Klipsch group or club. They sent back they didnt have a club and a price list of T shirts. 

IMAG0773.jpg

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Your Klipsch group or club idea sounds interesting and perhaps a bit before it's time.

 

One of my favorites is a rep from another manufacturer ( McIntosh ) was in store to demo some speakers, says these speakers can easily take the power, rolls the volume up quite quickly, then "POP".  I just laughed as the store manager had a look on his face like "Who's gonna pay for that ?"

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I used to visit Audio King in Saint Cloud MN where I grew up.  Had them do a couple car stereo installs for me almost 30 years ago.  Used to wander around while they were putting prices together on stuff.  One day I walked into a sound room where they had some giant electrostatic speakers and also either Belles or LaScalas, can't remember.

The Klipsch were powered by these tiny tube amps and the electrostatic ones were powered by these giant class A solid state amps that heated up the entire room.

They both sounded great, I remember being impressed by the electrostatic speakers because they were taller than me and were really interesting technology to me.

I was just out of high school but really wanted Klipsch so I ended up buying a KV-1 center speaker, a higher end Sony receiver and unfortunately some Bose mains and Definitive Technology subwoofer.

I had that gear for a long time and over the years have had at least 20 different Klipsch speaker models.

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When I was a young man over forty years ago I heard Klipschorns in an audio store when a salesman dropped a needle on a Heart album and it sounded like they were in the room playing. I was amazed and still remember it like it happened yesterday.

 

Klipsch is an experience you’ll never forget.

 

Experiencing Klipsch will enlighten you.

 

Hearing a Klipsch will change you forever.

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17 hours ago, grasshopper said:

my favorite has to be my wife liking my bumpy black LaScalas

 

every time I mention new speakers,

     "You are not getting rid of the big black ones"

Before I bought the Fortes, my wife was never overly impressed with any "improvements" I made to the audio system. Pretty much everything was, "that's nice, honey. I'm glad you like it. Call Dennis (brother-in-law) and tell him about it." Her reaction to the Fortes may not have been as enthusiastic as mine, but she really likes them and even said so without prompting.

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1977 or so.

Buying a pair of Heresy HIP for an acoustic band I was doing sound for.

 

Demo as some pro audio store in Ann Arbor Michigan.

 

Klipsch MCM

Crown amps

TASCAM mixer

Open reel deck of some sort.

1812 Overture

 

I was not much into classical music at 17 but I was floored.

 

Klipsch sound to me is like sitting with your legs dangling over the lip of the orchestra pit.

 

Dome tweeter speakers are like sitting in the last row of the balcony.

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On 3/11/2022 at 2:16 PM, grasshopper said:

my favorite has to be my wife liking my bumpy black LaScalas

 

every time I mention new speakers,

     "You are not getting rid of the big black ones"

Shes a keeper for sure.

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When I was a young man I spent a couple years as a painter - not the artist type. I learned from the best and we did mainly commercial but also a lot of real high end homes. We did a job for a couple who lived on Amherst Island in lake Ontario off from Kingston. A beautiful home over 200 years old made from lake stone - it had been an officers residence back in the day for the British navy before Canada was independent. It had been part of a naval base used against the Americans during the war of 1812. They were very wealthy and hospitable and spent quite a bit of time discussing the history of the home and island. He was a big wig retired engineer for Ontario Hydro. He met PWK at an engineering convention in the states way back, bought a Khorn ( back in the mono days), and then built a second when stereo became a thing.They also fed us extremely well and weren't shy with beverages at the end of the day. I spotted the Khorns early in the job. The old boy was impressed I knew what they were and had us sipping pints and having listening sessions every evening. They literally shook the place. They would have been from the early 60s. He gave me an old post card sort of thing that had a cut away diagram of the Klispch horn. He had a bunch of them.

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There have been a few through the years(decades). The last one was last year when my in laws(wife's sister and husband) from Peru were visiting last July. After playing a few select tunes on the Jubes at moderately high volume my SIL just said "WOW". That sums that up.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I have three Favorite Klipsch Speaker Experiences.

 

1.         Back in college (70’s) I was at the Klipsch dealer in Urbana, Good Vibes. A Phase Linear sales rep was there to demonstrate their new “low powered” amp. I think it was 100w/ch. He played it through a pair of LaScala. It was ear splitting LOUD. The output power indicators barely lit up. Then he flips the mute switch on the preamp. I literally felt like I had been lifted several feet into the air. The immediate contrast to silence was absolutely deafening. Everyone in the room looked at each other, stunned. Then the sales rep says, “I guess these were the wrong speakers to demonstrate this.” LMAO

 

2.         Some years later at a Chicago area Klipsch dealer (Hi-Fi Hutch), the sales guy is doing his thing for a young couple looking for speakers. He puts Supertramp/Crime of the Century, a popular demo record back then, on the turntable and cranks it up. The looks on that couple’s face was precious. The sales guy turns it off and asks “What do you think?”. They respond “OH NO!, we can’t afford anything like that!!!” He says “Sure you can, they’re well within your budget.” They say “Really?!! Those BIG speakers?”. Sales guys says No! You were listening to the little ones on top”. (Klipsch Heresy, sitting on top of the Khorns). The old jaw drop thing. They couldn’t believe it. So he did it again, even louder. One guess what they walked out of the store with.

 

3          This took place at my home in the listening room. Some of you long time members have heard this one before. My system was going to be published in Stereo Review’s “System of the Month”. So I got the bright idea to contact Sony and see if I could buy the soon to be released CDP-101, their first consumer CD player, at a discount of course, so it would be included in the photo shoot giving Sony a lot of cheap promo. They wouldn’t have any of that discount stuff, and there were only two units in the U.S at the time, on dealer tour. As an alternative, they guaranteed me first purchase off the initial shipment, and would send a Sony rep over to my place for the photo shoot and a listening demo. The Sony rep comes over. We set the CD player up and played a few CD. Sony rep goes to the bathroom. One of the guests present, Marmie (photographer’s girlfriend) (also a groupie and best friend with Survivor/Jim Peterik’s wife) turns around says “That Sucked!!!” (and it did, LOL). Sony rep comes back into the room and says “You know, I haven’t heard a really good system like this in a long time. I would really love to hear it ‘stretch its legs’. Would you happen to have that Tower of Power direct-to disk recording with Squibcakes on it?” Of course I do. I put that on the Linn and crank up the ARC SP-6 and Luxman triodes driving Klipschorns and Belle center. You should have seen the look on his face. I swear, his jaw must have dropped down to his knees. His head keeps turning as instruments, voices keep popping up across the 28 foot wide “sound stage”. And then around the 5 minute mark, Rocco Prestia’s bass expander kicks in and it was like the walls of the room blew out. The Sony rep was clearly stunned, even embarrassed and sheepishly left with his tail between his legs.

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53 minutes ago, artto said:

2.         Some years later at a Chicago area Klipsch dealer (Hi-Fi Hutch), the sales guy is doing his thing for a young couple looking for speakers. He puts Supertramp/Crime of the Century, a popular demo record back then, on the turntable and cranks it up. The looks on that couple’s face was precious. The sales guy turns it off and asks “What do you think?”. They respond “OH NO!, we can’t afford anything like that!!!” He says “Sure you can, they’re well within your budget.” They say “Really?!! Those BIG speakers?”. Sales guys says No! You were listening to the little ones on top”. (Klipsch Heresy, sitting on top of the Khorns). The old jaw drop thing. They couldn’t believe it. So he did it again, even louder. One guess what they walked out of the store with.

A friend of bought Heresy's by my recommendation. I was 23 years old, returning from my honeymoon in Quebec City, just in time to pick up my KC-BR horns I got my very first bank loan for (always paid cash, so I borrowed $1,000 to establish credit). My friend brought his Heresy's over to compare to my Khorns and left them with me while he went on a 2 week vacation. I had many different people over in the following days, with the H's on top of the corner horns. All I did was move the bass control on my McIntosh C26 pre amp from high Noon setting to 2 o'clock and listened to mostly the Heresy's for 2 weeks. Without exception, everyone that came to hear music thought the Khorns were the ones playing, especially when a cranked them up for demos. Shows you that that the VISUAL bias is stronger than the sonic one! It really was amazing, even for me.

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About twenty years ago, I was working in California and stopped in to what I think was a Fry's store. Some big box electronics store, anyway. To my surprise, they had a huge 5.1 home theater demo setup featuring four Klipshorns with probably a LaScalla for the center channel. They were showing the original Matrix and I think they may have looped it so the gunfight scene in the building with all the marble floors and columns was showing over and over. Standing in the middle of the space, the sounds of gunshots from every direction was pretty awesome. Even more so was the ping of the brass cartridges bouncing off the marble.

 

Probably not a use PWK had in mind, but it sure was effective and probably sold more than a few speakers.

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14 minutes ago, grasshopper said:

the newer MDF models would not have fit in the car ... it was that close. Like a motorized crate for them.

Still sounds like magic to me...LOL

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