Dahlquist DQ-10 flashback - diyAudio
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Old 11th May 2008, 04:34 AM   #1
Salas is offline Salas  Greece
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Default Dahlquist DQ-10 flashback

I saw a pair of DQ-10s on e-bay, and got a flashback.
I was a kid when I walked in a proper hi-fi store of the late 70s, and I asked the kind salesman if I could just listen for 10 mins to those great machines that they had on their window.
He smiled and switched some speakers driven by a walnut framed black and silver, floating turntable, connected to a small control unit with right and left volume controls and a hefty black amp. Wow! All was so nice, and then he switched to a weird pair of non box-like, curvy ones, with white grills and oak cheeks.
Those sounded so much more free than the others! They breathed somehow. I still recollect that moment.
Then I started collecting magazines and those things wore actually a Linn LP12, a DNM pre amp, and a powerful Mark Levinson amp, driving Infinity Kappa towers, Linn Isobariks, and Dahlquist DQ-10s in white gown.
Never saw them again since, not even as vintage in someone's hands. They must have not been really distributed in Greece back then. Maybe members of a small import of 'exotic' American models of that era.
Some American forum members must have lived with them or had many listens. Did they really work well? Was there any real science behind that ''phased array'' concept and 5(?) way crossover? Is anybody familiar about their acoustics idea of panels with drivers everywhere behind a grill?
Was that the best speaker in the room, or I just was so little and it was white and curvy?

Here is it with classic black grilles and many photos from one
ebay auction
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Old 11th May 2008, 06:21 AM   #2
chrisb is offline chrisb  Canada
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Well, there'd be some who's argue for the Linn Isobariks - particularly for shear power, but the DQ10's were certainly some kind of special.

It's been at least 30yrs since I owned a pair (and the passive XO/ sub) - they weren't perfect, but certainly one of my favorites during the 70's. I'd previously owned QUAD 33/303/ ESL57, and I know I'll take some flak for saying this, but for my money the DQ10s did even more things right than wrong than the QUADs. Even more heretical is that my favorite amp with the DQ10s was the Yamaha CA1000 running in class A; not the Quad 405, Bryston 2B bridged in mono, Marantz 250, Crown D150, or sundry other "big-name" SS gear I can't (or don't want to ) remember (BGW500 anyone? - I didn't think so) .

Sensitivity was an issue, and the parts quality of the stock XO was compromised somewhat by the bean counters; combined with the high powered SS amps that were "absolutely necessary for that headroom, ya know" (at least hereabouts) fatigue was not uncommon.

but damn if they didn't image like crazy. If I wasn't "blinded by science" during my 20's and had given tube amplifiers a chance, I might still own a pair.
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Old 11th May 2008, 11:32 AM   #3
Salas is offline Salas  Greece
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Thank you chrisb. For that era, you confirmed they really had many strengths. I wonder how they worked properly with that complex multi source spread of drivers. Maybe it was the boxless thing, plus back attenuated dipole low mid and closed box lows. I can see that the 4(!) drivers on staggered panels had aligned Z emission points (or at least tried to). The famous speakers back then were big and heavy and vertical. I don't know what Saul Marantz and Jon Dahlquist would have seen for an impulse if they had an FFT back then, but they surely tried over the ESL57 reference and had fresh ideas and good ears. Great vintage stuff!
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Old 11th May 2008, 12:11 PM   #4
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I couldnt resist buying a pair on ebay 3 weeks ago,mine are of the same vintage eg not mirror imaged.The bass drivers have been sent off to be rebuilt and the crossover components and wiring being upgraded.The midwoofer has a rubber surround and that looks ok,I need to unscrew the brackets and move the driver baffles I assume the midwoofer should be on the inside if the speakers are handed.
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Old 11th May 2008, 12:18 PM   #5
Salas is offline Salas  Greece
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Nice purchase! Let us know how they fair today! Yes I presume that the mid woofers should stay inside when the speakers get mirrored.
There is also a capacitor upgrade they used to do, as you do. I don't know what caps have the right tone. PP or MKT.
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Old 11th May 2008, 01:31 PM   #6
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there was also a popular mod many years ago that removed the Piezo tweeter and replaced it with the driver from the LS3A/5A


The DQ10's used a complex series crossover similar to the Frieds. I had to work on friends crossover and i tried to trace out the crossover and i remember thinking this cant be right? later i found a printed schematic and it was different then any crossover schematic i had ever seen.

There was also a matching subwoofer and passive crossover system that used transformers to sum both channels to one subwoofer with a single VC.


I had a friend that was a dedicated Bose-O-phile. for years i kept telling him there is better out there to be had. he never believed me. One day a garage sale hunting friend called and informed me he had picked up a set of DQ10's at an estate sale and had them for sale. so I convinced my bose-o-phile friend to go with and take a look/listen. He really like the way they looked and ended up buying them. We got them back to his place and got them setup and first played is little bose cube set up, he had a big smile on his face and said lets hear the others now, and we hit that switch and the whole room just filled up with sound. it went from this crappy boomy portable radio sound to this big wide room filling sound. switching back again it became very evident just how much music was missing on the bose.

The next day he sold ever pair of Bose he had and started seeking out replacements. He ended up with a pair of PSB Alpha's for the bedroom and small set of infinity 2-ways with the small Emit and the DQ10's and later the matching subwoofer.
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Old 11th May 2008, 01:40 PM   #7
Salas is offline Salas  Greece
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Default Crazy fun

You know what? If we gather some cheap drivers, a 10inch, a 5inch, and some domes and arrange them like that, and time align them with FFT and simulate a series crossover with modern software and measure ok, we can make clones!
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Old 11th May 2008, 02:38 PM   #8
PB2 is offline PB2  United States
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I've never owned a pair, but did like them when I heard them many years ago:

http://diyhifi.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=16&t=291

http://www.classicspeakerpages.net/I...showtopic=3249

Pete B.
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Old 11th May 2008, 03:28 PM   #9
Salas is offline Salas  Greece
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Look: 4 of them in dipole, on floor. Cheap hi Q

One very nice 6.5'' TB

Mid Dome, well reviewed. 2'' mid dome

Good HF one. High value.

BG Neo 3

What do you think? Dipole bass, no box, no depth dimension. Cross to the 6.5 inch TB at 200Hz, keep it up to 1000Hz. Music's power range coming out of a single, muffled back with felt source, on its own little baffle. Then Arrange the Dayton dome and the BG to its side. 1k to 5k for the 2'', 5k up for the BG Neo 3.

Good material for a DQ-10 inspired clone? Some excess phase subtraction with FFT and we can find their radiation centers relative to a mic pointing in the middle of all this upper assortment. Mount em where we must, and mold em with a wacko series crossover!
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Old 11th May 2008, 04:19 PM   #10
Salas is offline Salas  Greece
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Default Funky!

...
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