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Old 9th July 2004, 01:13 AM   #11
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Houston
Default I think your amp is the issue.

I never used 2's but lived with 3's for many years. Tried high power solid state and finally big mega tube amps. Manley 350's worked great, but settled on some Altec 1570's that were reworked completely.
The speakers were sent to Hollywood Fl and converted to the latest Medallion series during this period.
I found that some solid state amps could not deal with the low impedance at high frequencies. They would get very hard and it would quash the dynamics. They even blew up a couple when played at high volumes.
One test is is play at fairly high volume and see if you get a headache. The headache is a sure sign of ultrasonics. The top end of the 2's and original transformers may not do it, but the 3's could.
They should be smooth as butter on the top. The low feedback tube amps handled this without a whimper.
My moniker comes from living with a big ugly pair for so many years. Finally moved on, but they could be great in certain situations.

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Old 12th July 2004, 06:36 AM   #12
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Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Sunny Alberta
Unhappy This could be part of the problem!

Look what I found when I removed the cover from the amplifier!
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File Type: jpg badcap.jpg (48.9 KB, 71 views)
The Electronic Peasant
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Old 12th July 2004, 06:38 AM   #13
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Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Sunny Alberta
Needless to say, the failed cap and it's conductive ejaculate all over the regulator and amplifier pcbs was having an adverse effect on the sound.

That's one failure out of twelve for those capacitors, so far, if another one fails I will replace them all.

Anyways, I replaced the capacitor and cleaned up the inside of the amplifier, and then I ran some tests. Using the speakers themselves as a load, I was able to check the output of the amplifier with both sine and square waves (unfortunately I don't have the equipment for tone burst testing). There was no significant distortion, ringing, or noise that I could see at any frequency from 10Hz to about 40kHz, where the corners of the square waves began to round off. This was the same anywhere from no signal to close to clipping. The amplifier seems to be quite stable from what I can tell.

As for the sound, some recordings are just fine, but others still seem to have an unpleasant hard edge to them that really comes out at higher levels. For the most part the speakers are sounding better than they ever have, so maybe part of the problem is that I'm hearing just how bad some recordings really are. Still, I certainly would like the overall sound to be a bit smoother, so I'll continue to work on this. I'll post again when I've had more time to investigate what is happening here. Thanks everyone for all of your help!

Take care,
The Electronic Peasant
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