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Updating metal to composite horn in Lascala


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Hi just wondered if it’s possible to change the squawker metal horn in a 1970’s to mid 80’s LaScala to the newer horns used today?

I’m guessing maybe the crossover will have to be updated also? And is it still a LaScala if it’s updated from 40+ years ago to today’s model LaScala’s?

Thanks,

Steve

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If you can't get the composite horn, an alternative would be to line the outside of the horn with Dynamat. That will eliminate any alleged "ringing"

of the aluminum horn. After all, the intent of the composite (other than possibly mfr. cost savings) is to eliminate any possible resonance, no?

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54 minutes ago, Peter P. said:

If you can't get the composite horn, an alternative would be to line the outside of the horn with Dynamat. That will eliminate any alleged "ringing"

of the aluminum horn. After all, the intent of the composite (other than possibly mfr. cost savings) is to eliminate any possible resonance, no?

I’ve had both plastic and metal horns in La Scala’s and have not heard a bit of difference in the materials. 

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17 hours ago, Dr Morbius said:

Hi just wondered if it’s possible to change the squawker metal horn in a 1970’s to mid 80’s LaScala to the newer horns used today?

 

16 hours ago, nickyboy6100 said:

I’ve had both plastic and metal horns in La Scala’s and have not heard a bit of difference in the materials. 

 

I have also listened to both the metal K-400 and composite K-401 in the same room at the same time and could not hear any difference. Maybe you just need for @deang or yourself to refresh your crossover networks. Another thing to consider is that acoustic wall panels will often improve the sound of a listening room.

 

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The reason I ask is because I’ve read reviews of the new LaScala’s and they implied a more improved sound so if you didn’t have $13,000 to spend on a new set,(which I don’t) then how can I improve on a 40+ year old pair of LaScala’s. First thing I figured was go with a new mid horn (different material, and maybe slightly larger in the new LaScala?) and later start with different drivers, but then I thought maybe it’s the 2 piece cabinet that improves the sound, over the one piece older cabinet?

I really don’t know.

Steve

 

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The two horns have the same geometry. The new horns have a better fit and finish than the cast horns as the metal ones would vary over the life of the molds used for the castings.

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Make sure the throat of the metal horn is free of casting irregularities such as mismatches or lumpy restrictions. Mine were pretty bad and required a little handwork to smooth out the transition between driver and horn. Also, new gaskets wouldn't hurt. And tighten horn to baffle interface evenly and snuggly. 

If you have K55m drivers, you probably  don't, reglue the back cap, they can buzz after years in service.

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I dampened my La Scala mid horn with sticky rubber. It definitely smooths out the response from all three drivers.

 

However, I also damped my Heresy I and Chorus II mid horns. The response was substantially more obvious than with my La Scalas. For the Heresy, the mid and bass cleared up, giving me a more 3D or live sound. For the Chorus IIs, that unwanted honking sound completely cleared up. This was all with tube amps,  upgraded banana plug cables, and interior wiring. Your mileage may vary.

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On 9/20/2022 at 5:31 PM, Dr Morbius said:

Hi just wondered if it’s possible to change the squawker metal horn in a 1970’s to mid 80’s LaScala to the newer horns used today?

 

it's a drop in replacement , but the improvement may not be that drastic  ,   metal , brass  instruments in an orchestra sound  better on a metal horn , but that's what my ears tell me .

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On 9/21/2022 at 9:22 AM, Dr Morbius said:

The reason I ask is because I’ve read reviews of the new LaScala’s and they implied a more improved sound so if you didn’t have $13,000 to spend on a new set,(which I don’t) then how can I improve on a 40+ year old pair of LaScala’s. First thing I figured was go with a new mid horn (different material, and maybe slightly larger in the new LaScala?) and later start with different drivers, but then I thought maybe it’s the 2 piece cabinet that improves the sound, over the one piece older cabinet?

I really don’t know.

Steve

 

 

Steve, the main difference between the classic/1st gen La Scalas and the new models is the 2-piece 1” MDF cabinets.  To get your speakers sounding like the newer models, you could look for some La Scala IIs.  They’re still at the low point in their price curve, so they can sometimes be found at really good prices, way less than $13,000.  The bass horn is different, with the step from the straight section to the vee eliminated.  The horn is a little bit longer, too.  The sum of the effects of the different horn and the different cabinet material and thickness is that the bass is noticeably stronger, to the point where it seems to go lower, although it actually doesn’t.  This called for a change in the crossover, which is way more complex than the older AA crossovers.

 

As well as that, the finish is really good furniture grade, so they look better in your room.  I’ve got both in my room, and the new model is a definite upgrade.  Since the LS2 came out in 2006, they are becoming more numerous on the used market, so it’s a good time to look for a pair.

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In some instances the thin metal plate gets loose. I assume the glue holding it just gets old and starts to let go. Probably depends on the environment they have been in whether they get loose or not. Tap on the back of yours and if they rattle or make any noise they will need to be re-glued. How to on youtube and net. I check my occasionally but have never experienced it myself. Mine still good.  

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