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Purveyors of Electronic, Musical and Vintage goods from then, now and in between. 
Since 1982.

FAVORITE VINTAGE HOME-AUDIO SPEAKER SURVEY RESULTS

 


Finally, we have posted the results, thus far, of YOUR 'Favorite 'Vintage' Stereo Speaker survey. We have been collecting data for quite some time to determine what's the best home audio / stereo speaker out there, or what are YOUR favorites, following our loose criteria mentioned below.

 

 


 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



__________________________________________________________________________
 


SPEAKER SURVEY


We welcome you to email us with your list of favorite speakers (brand / model). We are looking for your favorite home audio speaker models from the very late 1960's into the late 1980's. Please no A / V speakers, custom made, home-made, one-off or anything modern.
Also, we are aware that there are many "boutique" and high end speakers that, while also marvelous, were not available to a wide market, so would not be as appropriate for this inquiry. This list we are putting together is the "every-man's" (or every-woman's)

type of speakers that were in production and available at most audio stores at the time that originally sold in the price range of $150 to $4000. We're not sure exactly what we're going to do with the list, just curious. Thanks in advance for your time.

KEEP CHECKING BACK. WE HAVE ONLY GOTTEN THROUGH ABOUT 30% OF THE RESULTS AS OF 9/13/13

When applicable, I have inserted additional notes or comments from the participants.
Votes / comments with numerals and text in 'BLUE' indicate that I added my vote / comment to a participants entry as well (for what that's worth).
Thank you all for your efforts and more are welcomed!

 

SPEAKER BRAND SPEAKER MODEL # OF
VOTES
NOTES / THOUGHTS / COMMENTS FROM
PARTICIPANTS
     
     
ACCOUSTAT 33 1  
     
ACOUSTIC RESEARCH / AR AR-3 1  
     
ACOUSTIC RESEARCH / AR

 

 

AR-3-ax

 

 

2


 
"I have been an audiophile since 1969. Have been in the industry since 1980. Bench tech (Sound Emporium), salesman (21st Century Sound), sales manager (Jerry's Audio), customer service manager (Rockford Fosgate / Hafler), Independent Manufacturers Rep. (dozens of brands)."
 
     
ACOUSTIC RESEARCH / AR
 
AR-5
 
1
 
 
     
ACOUSTIC RESEARCH / AR

 

 

 

AR-7

 

 

 

1




 
"In 1973 I purchased a pair of AR-7's after comparing them to several other bookshelf units (JBL Century 100's, Pioneer, Advent and Dynaco A25's come to mind). The Along with the Pioneer's, the JBL's were too bright, a "West Coast" sound. The Advent and Dynaco were much more neutral (New England sound) but the AR's won out. At that time, my electronics were all Dynaco (solid state), with a Dual 1229Q
turntable for source. I also had an excellent pair of Koss Pro 4AA phones.
"
     
ACOUSTIC RESEARCH / AR AR-18 2  
     
ACOUSTIC RESEARCH / AR




 

 

 

 

 

AR-91's




 

 

 

 

 

1



 

 





 

"Having subscribed to numerous audio periodicals for years, and learning how to decipher editorials (read between the lines based upon the author's style), upon entering a salon in 1983 I was quite prepared to fall in love with the Bose 901's.
Fortunately, the salon also carried the Acoustic Research line. I auditioned the 901's and the AR-91's and some others I cannot recall. Not surprisingly, I purchased the AR-91's. Six months later, I returned and purchased a pair of AR-18s's. The smaller pair have identical timbre, the only difference being at moderately loud evels where the bass of their larger brothers shines through. I still have both pair, although the 91's are in storage many years now. However, I
have concrete plans to have them restored this summer and look forward to this. Shortly after purchasing the AR's, I recall wondering how I ever expected the Bose 901's, with multiple same-size drivers, to compete with a well designed 3-way system, with or without an EQ.
"
 
     
ACOUSTIC RESEARCH / AR AR-4a 1 "I wish I had never sold mine..."
     
ACOUSTIC RESEARCH / AR AR-4X 1  
     
 
     
ADC 303-AX 1 "...sentimental reason-first "high quality" speakers I owned"
     
     
ADVENT "HERITAGE" 1  
     
ADVENT

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

"THE LOUDSPEAKER"
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

"I own a pair of 'Advent Loudspeakers' and a pair of 'The
Small Advent Loudspeaker' "

"My pride-and-joys were the Advent speakers. I figured on listened to them forever, however after about 17 years, the wooffer cones started detaching from the frames around the edges. I gave them away and bought Polks, which I liked, too. I wish I had kept them, I understand they could have been repaired. Oh well..."

"I have had these speakers since I bought them new in 1978. They still sound great....As you have noted on your website, there are many speakers to be had for thousands of dollars... but in 1978, I compared the NLALs to speakers costing three times as much... blind... and picked the NLALs... as did several "golden ear" audiophiles auditioning loudspeakers at the same time....They have been a great investment."

"
These Henry Kloss designs offered amazing "bang for the buck" audio that smoked anything near their price, with rare exception"

"One of my favorites too. A good old 'stand by' for pretty much anyone and most listening situations"
 
     
ADVENT "THE SMALLER LOUDSPEAKER" 2 "nearly identical sound as the 'Large' version, just about 10Hz less bass from the smaller box"
     
ADVENT

 

 

"THE LOUDSPEAKER" DOUBLES

 

2

 

 

"Set" of Double Advents (1973 Model)"
I listed the 'Advent Loudspeakers' again, because this person specified 'Double' Advents. What he is referring to by 'Double', is the practice of stacking 2 pairs of Advent Loudspeakers, with the top pair 'inverted', thus 'coupling' the tweeters. This setup is famously renowned for 30+ years as a rival to most any speaker system out there, at ANY price!!!
     
a/d/s L880 1  
     
a/d/s

 

 

L1530

 

 

1



 
"I have been an audiophile since 1969. Have been in the industry since 1980. Bench tech (Sound Emporium), salesman (21st Century Sound), sales manager (Jerry's Audio), customer service manager (Rockford Fosgate / Hafler), Independent Manufacturers Rep. (dozens of brands)."
     
AKAI CW-2500 1  
     
ALTEC 14 1  
     
ALTEC 19 1  
     
ALTEC A5 1  
     
ALTEC VOTT (Voice of the Theater) 1 (participant didn't mention which model of VOTT's)
     
B&W




 
DM70




 
1




 
"electrostatic hybrids, which were superb for piano, acoustic guitar, anything with strings in fact and very good for vocals and classical. Unfortunately they weren't great for rock music or anything with heavy amplification and overloaded if pushed too hard - but they were unsurpassed for acoustic instruments and vocals....These days I'm still listening to my JBL4313B control monitors that I bought in the 80's, very good neutral speakers that can take a lot of power and can handle most types of music but they don't have the spatial definition of the DM70's."
     
BOSE 10.2 Series II 1  
     
BOSE 301-II 1  
     
BOSE 601-I (Original Series) 2  
     
BOSE 901-IV 1  
     
BOSE 901-VI 1  
     

     
BOSTON ACOUSTIC A100 1  
     
BOSTON ACOUSTIC A200 1  
     
BOZAK B-302A 1  
     
BOZAK B-310 1  
     
BOZAK B-410 1 "A fabulous speaker, that's slightly over the price limits of the survey parameters"
     
BOZAK B-501 1  
     
BOZAK
 
B-4000 / 4005 Symphony
 
1
 
"were $1500 in 1975 and if the capacitors are renewed and no one has ruined the drivers.. they're still one of the four best I've ever heard."
     
     
Calrad speakers Calrad Triaxial Calrad CR-12TX 1  
     
Celestion 3 1 "fantastic budget speaker"
     
Celestion Ditton 442 1 "Wish I still had'em!"
     
Celestion SL6si 1  
     
     
CERWIN VEGA AT-12 1  
     
CERWIN VEGA D-7 1 "great work horse speaker"
     
CERWIN VEGA MX-400 1 "Stupid BIG sound @ 10-15 wpc (sensitivity 104db)"
     
     
CROWN INTERNATIONAL
SPEAKERS
'Electrostatic' speakers
 
1
 
"Crown International (of Elkart Indiana) briefly made electrostatic speakers. The little ones sold for under $2000 each, in that time period. If you had gobs of highly damped power (DC300A or two, minimum) they were pretty cool."
     
Dahlquist  DQ-10 1  
     
DCM 'TIME WINDOWS' 2 "I wish I had never sold mine..."
     
     
DYNACO A-25 3  
     
DYNACO A-25XL 1  
     
ELECTROVOICE / EV

 

 

EV-7

 

 

1

 

 

"My father bought new in the mid to late 60's. I always liked the sound of them and still use them from time to time. I know they're not the most desirable speakers as far as aficionados are concerned, but they look and sound fine."
ELECTROVOICE / EV
 
INTERFACE-A speakers
 
1 "...came with electronic equalizer for frequencies between
Theil/Small rolloff and cutoff"
ELECTROVOICE / EV
 

'Sentury Five' speakers
 

1 "...ElectroVoice Sentry Five, a two way speaker that was extraordinarily efficient, had bi-radial horn on tweeter, sold for $499 each. I'm still using a pair of these on my Krell 300i, even after two woofer repairs"
     
Energy Loudspeakers / Energy Speakers Systems PRO 22 Monitor 1  
     
EPICURE 100 1  
     
Graphyx Systems
 
'Graphyx Systems' speakers
 
1 "...Graphyx Systems, speakers out of Illinois, briefly made a line of excellent base-reflex ported systems, from the SP-6 at $99 each, the SP7 (Acoustic Suspension), SP-8 (bigger SP6), and SP-10 (really big bookshelf at $249 each). These all had the same ferro-fluid tweeters."
     
     
     
     
INFINITY QUANTUM-2 1  
     
INFINITY QUANTUM-3 1  
     
INFINITY




 
RSM (Reference Studio Monitors)



 
1




 
"circa 1975-1978 sounds great with any amp. or receiver..., not neutral speakers, they have a sound all of their own"
I would have to agree on your point that they are great sounding speakers, but disagree on your point of being, "not neutral" speakers. A mark of most great speakers are that they should be 'neutral' sounding and impart little if anything to the original 'source' material. They were called 'Reference Studio Monitors' to infer that they were VERY FLAT in response, and I would generally agree. Fabulous sounding speakers.
     
INFINITY RS4.5 1  
     
INFINITY RS4b 2  
     
     
     
JBL 4311 2  
     
JBL 4313b 1 "These days I'm still listening to my JBL4313B control monitors that I bought in the 80's, very good neutral speakers that can take a lot of power and can handle most types of music "
     
JBL 4320 1  
     
JBL 4410A 1 "Very accurate speaker"
     
JBL 4430 1  
     
JBL III 1  
     
JBL C-36WX (1964-1968) 1 "Teak Speaker Cabinets originally purchased in 1962. These cabinets have the JBL D123 speakers"
     
JBL L65 'JUBAL' speakers 1  
     
JBL L96 1  
     
JBL L100 3  
     
JBL L150 2  
     
JBL

 

 

LB250

 

 

1

 

 

"I really liked the old JBL series of anything 1985-1993 especially the LB250 or the decades with the 12" woofers O love all the older Infinity tower ref 2 I have some they are thirty two now and I have put them up against 30 different pairs and nothing is more rounded but the lb250 JBL's kef made some great speakers in the early 90's too but your on target with what is worth anything at all and they still sound better than what's new unless your paying 5k or more for speakers."
     
KEF 104/2 1  
     
KEF C30 1  
     
     
KLH



 
MODEL SIX (6)



 
1



 
"Sonically, these speakers surprised the heck out of me. They are nearly as old as I am (1967-ish if I'm correct). But they have a great, smooth, balanced sound that I can listen to day and night. Good, musical bass that defined the sound of good acoustic suspension speakers (and call out how poor sounding many that followed were). Easy high end, and while not terribly extended is, again, very musical. While these aren't very happy with modern, transient electronic music, they handle pretty much everything else with grace."
     
KLH Research Ten SXC3 1  
     
Klipsch Cornwall speakers 2  
     
Klipsch Forte 1  
     
Klipsch Heresy       3  
     
Klipsch KG-4 1  
     
MARANTZ HD-660 1  
     
MARANTZ HD-770 1  
     
MARANTZ HD-880 1  
     
MARANTZ M-16 1  
     
MARTIN LOGAN ETHOS 1  
     
McIntosh
 

 

ML-1C
 

 

1
 

 

"I like classical pipe-organ music and so their acoustic suspension works well for the 16Hz fundamental of a 32 foot pipe. I also listen to hip-hop which is also
bass-heavy. The speakers handle it all without having that annoying "boomy" quality."
 
     
MISSION 765 1  
     
OHM 'I' 2  
     
OHM 'L' 1 "Clean and crisp"
     
     
PIONEER CS-99A 1 "...to this day regret parting with those. They had a very nice sound, and are not easy to mistake for other speakers."
     
PIONEER CS-901 1  
     
PIONEER HPM-60 1  
     
PIONEER HPM-100 2  
     
PIONEER HPM-150 1  
     
PIONEER HPM-200 1 "These speakers sound "large" and clean powered by my Carver M500t and Lexicon CP3 combo."
     
 
     
POLK AUDIO MONITOR 7B 1  
     
POLK AUDIO RT-12 1  
     
REALISTIC





 
NOVA 7B





 
1





 
"I wasn't so sure about picking these up, but I've been surprised by Radio Shack gear before and these were no exception. A basic 10" A/S design, not so entirely dissimilar than the old KLH boxes, but with two cone tweeters. The three-position contour switch on the back seems to control the level and maybe even crossover point of the bottom tweeter. Foam surrounds but with some sort of coating so they are intact. These speakers sound great! Good, solid bass response, with a little more authority than the old Model Six manages. The mids are a bit relaxed for my tastes, though, and the high end, while present, is very beamy. On-axis, these sound well balanced, but very far off-axis and you lose a lot of high-end (and therefore imaging, etc)."
     
REALISTIC
 
MACH-ONE
 
2
 
"Essentially a 'semi-pro / DJ speaker for the home and was not 'bested' by it's successors, the Realistic 'Mach-Two' or 'Mach-Three' ."
     
RECTILINEAR III 'LOW BOYS' 2 "Own a pair of Rectilinear III 'High-boys' myself. Lots of presence, with that 'Big Wall' Sound."
     
SANSUI


 
SP-2500X


 
1


 
"I had a pair of SP-2500's and never really came to terms with them. That is because THESE are the ones I should have had in the first place! While some mislabel these as "firing squads", I think they're actually much better engineered than that. Good, tight bass for a ported cabinet, nicely balanced mids, and fairly extended high end thanks to the dual bullet tweeters. They handle power pretty well, image ok (better than expected), and don't tire me out to listen to them (unlike the original 2500's)."
     
SCOTT



 
196



 
1



 
"I think my HH SCOTT 196 speakers sound very warm and clear on my MCS 3835 Integrated Amplifier"

I would agree about Scott 196 / 196B speakers. They are a relatively 'unknown' speaker, that all around 'ROCKS'! And you guys don't knock his MCS gear. MCS was mostly built by Matsushita, who was the parent company of Technics and Panasonic, and for the most part the stuff sounds decent and usually doesn't break!
     
SPENDOR BC-1 1  
     
SPENDOR SP-1 1  
     
     
     
SPICA TC-50 1  
     
Vandersteen 1A 1 "Amazing soundstage"
     
Vandersteen 1C 1 "Ridiculous soundstage"
     
WHARFEDALE
 

 

 

W-70
 

 

 

2



 
"I have been an audiophile since 1969. Have been in the industry since 1980. Bench tech (Sound Emporium), salesman (21st Century Sound), sales manager (Jerry's Audio), customer service manager (Rockford Fosgate / Hafler), Independent Manufacturers Rep. (dozens of brands)."

"From Oak Tree; I've heard examples of Wharfedale W-70's that were fabulous and a couple of examples that were among some of the worst speakers I've heard."
     
     
YAMAHA NS-500 2  
     
YAMAHA NS-1000 2  
     
     
     
     



 

 

 


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