Upgrading from dome conventional to ribbon


I am considering upgrading my cloth dome tweeter with a ribbon, where is the best place to start the mod, do I have to upgrade my crossover and is there any guides to the process. I am fairly competent with loudspeaker design, but ribbon tweeters is a new area for me, but know that I have heard many and love the sweet clear detailed sound.
My speakers are the QLN reference (about 15 years old)
I think that the drivers are scanspek at the moment (doped paper bass drivers and a normal dome fabric tweeter)
Below is a picture of a vintage Acoustic Research model 3 speaker. I replaced the old dome tweeter (first of it's kind) with a Fountek (NeoCD3.0) ribbon. The owner loves the sound better than other modern tweeters (even Scanspeak) I've installed in aother speakers he owns of the same type (3a's etc.). He's come back to me and wants to schedule changing over his other AR's to the same ribbon.

The original model 3 had a 1st order xover on the tweeter (single cap). I went with a 2nd order targeted at the same xover point of 5 kHz to help protect the delicate ribbon. In this case, the xover point was much higher than the Fountek stated freq. range low end of 1.4 kHz. If your xover point is closer to this level, then go with a 3rd or even 4th LR type which will also minimize distortion.


  • AR3a w ribbon tweeter.JPG
    AR3a w ribbon tweeter.JPG
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Thats brilliant, thanks, I was just concerned that I had to do something special with the existing crossover in the loudspeakers.
At this stage I simply wanted to try by swapping the cables from the rear of the current tweeter and trying them on a ribbon? can I do that then without damaging the amp or ribbon tweeter,.