Resurrecting John Bowers Active 1's

I have inherited a pair of John Bowers Active 1. These appear to be active/passive hybrid speakers with a good reputation. 2.5 way with a passive crossover on the bass unit at 350hz.

The dual amps actively power the tweeter (at 3khz) and the mid run from 3khz down, via the passive low pass for the bass. Unfortunately, both boards are not functioning. I won’t go into detail on the state of the PSU and Amps here as they are doing a number of strange things and have not been stored in good condition. The passive crossover, tweeters and two of the four drivers are functional. I’m happy to source two new drivers. The cabinet and grilles are in good shape and its very well built.
I’ve attached some of the service manual. The schematics seem relatively simple, in modern terms, but I do not have electrical expertise.

I’m in two minds about whether to turn them active with minidsp and new amps, or to take a piecemeal approach with the crossover and to make them passive by taking the crossover from a pair of DM10 speakers, which apparently have a very similar (identical?) dome tweeter (TP26 vrs my TZ26). Both models cross over at 3khz.

I guess I’m wondering if forum members would guide me towards the best approach. I believe in good condition these units are worth about £900. I’m happy to spend £2-300. I’m intrigued by their reputation and it would be a shame to see them end up being thrown. However, if without the amps they will never sing, then dumped they indeed will be!

I have a pair of John Bowers Active One speakers that I am selling for an older friend who is moving into a smaller home and can't take them with him. They both work perfectly and I even have the instruction manual. They are listed on ebay for $2999. I am asking $2000 or best offer. The speakers are located in Auburn, CA. See photos.
I also have a lot of other HiFi equipment for sale...including...A Revox B226CD player ($600), a PS Audio 5.7 Preamplifier ($400), a Beogram 3300 turntable ($300), an Enlightened Audio DSP-700 Series II DAC in Gold ($1100), a Luxman 5M21 Amplifier ($600), a Sony C701ES CD changer ($75), Sony AM?FM Tuner ($50), and Marantz SR7400 AV Receiver ($70). I have photos of all of the components listed.


  • Bowers speaker instruction.jpeg
    Bowers speaker instruction.jpeg
    82.9 KB · Views: 63
  • speakers side view.jpeg
    speakers side view.jpeg
    84 KB · Views: 72
  • speakers w:o cover.jpeg
    speakers w:o cover.jpeg
    88.7 KB · Views: 68
  • speakers with cover.jpeg
    speakers with cover.jpeg
    71.8 KB · Views: 70