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View Full Version : Model 19's vs Altec 846U Valencia SHOWDOWN COMING SOON!



Storm
12-01-2006, 12:40 PM
My dad just purchased a pair of Model 19's. We are taking a trip to pick them up next saturday.

He agreed to let me have a showdown between the 19's and the 846 Valencias before they go to his condo.

So, starting on December 10th I will be updating this post and will send pictures and analysis of the showdown.

Anyone in the Phoenix area is welcome to come to the showdown to see for themselves which one of these beasts wins.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ALTEC-NINETEEN-19-STUDIO-MONITORS_W0QQitemZ190057599202QQihZ009QQcategoryZ5 0597QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

No, that is not my eBay ID - that is my fathers. My ID for anyone who cares is Ocupatto.

I can't wait! I am so glad my dad has the bank roll to do this showdown, because even with slapping on a credit card, my funds are strapped.

Who knows, maybe I will buy them from him and give him my 846's or even sell those to fund these.

I am so excited!

:applaud::applaud::applaud::applaud:

DaveV
12-01-2006, 04:44 PM
I have both (Flamencos & 19's) but I haven't done an A/B comparison because I would have to move furniture to convert my LR into a test area then bring the electronics and the 19's down from the second floor. That's just too much work for an old guy like me. LOL All I know is that I had the Flamenco's for about 5 years and although I enjoyed them after I added tweeters, I always thought they were not quite right and I had a problem with one note bass that got pretty boring. I think the 19's are much more listenable in that they just sound smoother across the audio spectrum and the bass is more real and extended once you get used to the lack of the one note boom. Everything is more real. I was stunned by classical guitar, piano and voice. Good jazz recordings are awesome. I'm still playing with a tweeter for that top sparkle but using a simple 6db xover on the tweeter and using the 802 out to it's upper limits is fussy business trying to get the right overlap. I sent the 802's to Great Plains for a recharge and rebuild so maybe that issue will fall into place better once I get them back. I see that "Dad's" 19's don't have the foam inserts around the 811's either. Seems they all pretty much fell a part years ago. I did order replacements from Dan Darst and it will be interesting to see exactly what they do. It makes sense that they help with diffraction issues along the 811 baffle and cabinet edges but how much difference? I figured the $48.50 shipped wasn't so bad to find out.
I'm really looking forward to your comparison.


Dave

Gary L
12-02-2006, 06:52 AM
FINALLY! Its about time Storm, hope the showdown goes well and also hope the 19s are performing up to spec when you do the A/B test.
Remember they are around 30 years old and one mans opinion of "Performing Flawlessly" may not be as accurate as many would hope.

Alnico magnets are wonderfull but they do loose strength over time and when ran hard. 30 year old diaphrams can also be quite brittle or may even have been replaced with junky after market varieties rather then the GPA 34647s. XOs may also be out of spec and could benefit from new caps.
A/B testing is worthless if the playing field is not level or the equipment is out of spec.

BTW. The photos of your dads auction state "Oiled Walnut Finish" Granted the photos are pretty poor but they sure do look like the Oak versions to me. This could be a good thing because the Walnuts are way more common for the 19 finish.

Looking forward to your future report.

Gary

Steve
12-02-2006, 12:15 PM
Aloha Storm

After doing the testing and comparison with the speakers on the floor, raise them up and do another set of tests.
When we had the living room carpet cleaned, we put my Valencia's up on the kitchen table. The difference was so amazing that I now have them sitting on top a pair of JBL 4435's that I recently picked up.

Steve

Storm
12-02-2006, 12:28 PM
I do have my Valencias raised. I put them each on 5" inch cinder blocks. It helped raise the horns to ear level and they sound fantastic.

Maybe, that is why others rave about the 19's - they appear to be more at ear level without having to make adjustments.

Should be an interesting showdown - I can't wait.

:)

Current setup below - left speaker.

SEAWOLF97
12-02-2006, 08:09 PM
nice setup Storm. I would try for even more height off the floor if you can manage it.

Whats the cool looking walnut box on top of the speaker ?? :D

Gary L
12-02-2006, 08:22 PM
You had to rub that Mic box in didn't you SEAWOLF! The only reason it is not in my stable is Storm was quicker on the trigger!:banghead:

I personally think it looks terrible on those light speakers and should be on a darker cabinet like the ones I have. :D

Gary

Storm
12-02-2006, 10:31 PM
Yes, that is the mic box that Seawolf sold me. I love it! I use it for my car keys and wallet - very nice and convienient place to put them.

I actually like having the contrast between the light and dark - does not bother me at all.

Why would I want to raise them higher? They are at perfect ear height when in my listening chair.

Gary - why did you want that box? Yeah, I was pretty darn fast.

Like the poster? I got that off eBay months ago and it is never being sold - I love that ALOT!

:)

Gary L
12-03-2006, 06:56 AM
That box will look nice anywhere it is displayed. I wanted it for the same reason you did, Pretty, well made, Altec and I love quality made wood stuff.
I would have used it for my TT extras like Cartridges, scale and other LP related gadgets. I have made many and can easily make another so no big deal.
I agree your speakers are at the right height when the horns are at ear level from your listening position. 19s sound sweeter to me because of this as well as better HF drivers and XOs. If the ones your dad got are sounding correct you will soon understand.
I have said this before to you regarding your speakers, If you can't be with the one you love-love the one your with. Nothing wrong with what you have I just like the ones your dad has better.

Gary

KidAltec
12-03-2006, 07:15 AM
I do have my Valencias raised. I put them each on 5" inch cinder blocks. It helped raise the horns to ear level and they sound fantastic.

Maybe, that is why others rave about the 19's - they appear to be more at ear level without having to make adjustments.

Should be an interesting showdown - I can't wait.

:)

Current setup below - left speaker.

Hi Storm , I my journey up the Altec home speaker foodchain I have often ask myself should the next stop be the Valencias or the Model 19's ... so please be sure to update your post as soon as the "showdown" takes place ... :bouncy:

That Altec poster in your photo is really SWEET:applaud: The real sign of a "collector" is they grab up everything with the name on it ... signs, poster, boxes, beltbuckles, etc ... and should you be just a little short of cash for that next speaker purchase ... that poster & box would look real nice in my "little tiny just starting out" Altec collection :D

SEAWOLF97
12-03-2006, 07:43 AM
Why would I want to raise them higher? They are at perfect ear height when in my listening chair.


Just appeared "lower than ear level" from the pix. I'm in the process of raising the height on the 4410's and really starting to hear the difference. If yours are "right" , now,,,leave them that way. Maybe find "nicer than cinder block" stands ?:applaud:

Gary L
12-03-2006, 08:15 AM
Just appeared "lower than ear level" from the pix. I'm in the process of raising the height on the 4410's and really starting to hear the difference. If yours are "right" , now,,,leave them that way. Maybe find "nicer than cinder block" stands ?:applaud:

I'd agree here and looks like in his room some of those nice glass blocks might be just the ticket. Might even find them in a color that will match you other glass items.

Gary

JBLRaiser
12-03-2006, 10:43 AM
My dad just purchased a pair of Model 19's. We are taking a trip to pick them up next saturday.

He agreed to let me have a showdown between the 19's and the 846 Valencias before they go to his condo.

So, starting on December 10th I will be updating this post and will send pictures and analysis of the showdown.

Anyone in the Phoenix area is welcome to come to the showdown to see for themselves which one of these beasts wins.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ALTEC-NINETEEN-19-STUDIO-MONITORS_W0QQitemZ190057599202QQihZ009QQcategoryZ5 0597QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

No, that is not my eBay ID - that is my fathers. My ID for anyone who cares is Ocupatto.

I can't wait! I am so glad my dad has the bank roll to do this showdown, because even with slapping on a credit card, my funds are strapped.

Who knows, maybe I will buy them from him and give him my 846's or even sell those to fund these.

I am so excited!

:applaud::applaud::applaud::applaud:

Unless you are a weight lifter, I would recommend a hand truck for the move. They can be picked up, but your back could suffer. They will eat up a lot of space. Make arrangements for where they will go in advance. And have fun. I sure have.

Storm
12-04-2006, 09:21 PM
Zilch or anyone else in CA? - would it be possible that after I pick up the Model 19's, can I get them checked out by one of you experts?

I can bring the beer, even though I don't drink.

:)

-Storm

Zilch
12-04-2006, 09:41 PM
I'd be pleased to check them out for you, Storm.

Problem is, ZilchLab is 425.7 miles from where you're picking them up near Fontana, no?

You'll want someone in the Los Angeles area to do that, I'd think.... :yes:

Storm
12-04-2006, 11:37 PM
No, Bloomington, California.

Anyone near there? I can certainly drive out of my way for the expertise of fellow members on this board.

Thank you.

-Storm

louped garouv
12-05-2006, 09:05 AM
Unless you are a weight lifter, I would recommend a hand truck for the move. They can be picked up, but your back could suffer. They will eat up a lot of space. Make arrangements for where they will go in advance. And have fun. I sure have.

where are the bases that should be under your M19s? did you not get them with your pair?

they are remarkably simmilar in construction to the spacer between the bottom and top boxes... if you are interested

they are heavy, but resist the temptation to use the recessed space to lift the M19s, I have heard some horror sroties...

JBLRaiser
12-06-2006, 06:31 PM
where are the bases that should be under your M19s? did you not get them with your pair?

they are remarkably simmilar in construction to the spacer between the bottom and top boxes... if you are interested

they are heavy, but resist the temptation to use the recessed space to lift the M19s, I have heard some horror sroties...

That part was missing from mine and I haven't attempted making some yet. So true about the inconvenience of lifting them. I have only picked them up twice. Getting them in the SUV and out to the chosen room. And was very careful.

TnTn
12-08-2006, 11:11 PM
Storm,

I just looked at the auction pictures. It is just me but for $1600, I expect speakers in better conditions. This pair may have been listed a few times as I remember seeing it a while back. A few things I noticed:

- The cabinets have different shades
- The woofers and dustcaps have different shades as well.
- Sometimes when they are different, they might not sound the same.
- The bottom stands may not be original. Some people do care (I don't).
- The grill cloth could be replaced but hopefully the frames are intact.

I recommend that you bring a strong flashlight as well as a hand mirror. Use the flashlight and shine into the throat of the horns and make sure you see the tangerine phase plugs. Study the shape of the 802-8G and make sure the drivers in there are them (though the seller states that they are). Use the mirror through the slot to view the backs of the 416's magnets and make sure that they are the 416-8B model. The 802's are too far back so you can't see the label. My pair has factory code so the Altec model stickers are absence. The surround on the woofer on the right speaker looks a bit "runny". Make sure it is not hiding anything. If possible, and if the seller would accomodate, see if you could carefully remove the horns and check the 802's diaphragms. Most sellers probably won't accomodate this though.

Just a few pointers and I hope others will chime in. The reason I am bring all this up is b/c I have gone with friends to check out a few vintage speakers and most of them have been improperly messed with, i.e. with incorrect parts. I have experienced with this as well.

Good luck,
T.

Storm
12-09-2006, 01:09 AM
Funny...I am just about 6 hours away from driving to pick these up. The drive is not bad at all, about 4 1/2 hours.

The speakers look fine to me. I own 846Us and my dad has had his eye on those, but they are not for sale. So, he decided to grab a pair of these and I am going to do an a/b comparison before they go into his condo.

I will double check the tangerine and I am sure I can spot the woofers, since I already know what to look for - I took apart mine about 3 months ago.

Thank you for your advice TNTN, it is greatly appreciated.

The price seems fair to me - they rarely come up for sale on the west coast and when they do, especially lately, they have been getting $1200-$1400, so paying a couple hundred just to make sure my dad gets a pair of the best Altec Speakers available, is not a big deal. Especially 20 years ago they retailed for $1600 per pair back in that money, so I feel this is an amazing deal.

Just like my Altec 846U's, I did not "Steal" them. Life is way to damn short to try and get "Steals"...if the item is worth it, why not spend the little extra cash just to make sure you can have enough time to enjoy the damn thing. Am I wrong?

Can any other members look at the photos and tell me if I should be "worried" and if so, what should I look for?

I will do the review on Sunday morning and post my results after a full day of comparison. I want to run through my entire CD collection, or most of it.

Until then, goodbye. Or, if you have any advice, I will read this thread in about 6 hours, I leave at about 9am Arizona time.

:D

And yes, I am going to demand to listen to them first before we load them up.

Gary L
12-09-2006, 05:53 AM
I won't comment on prices, that totally your Dads decision.
The grills are hammered and at the least need new cloth. At the worst I would expect to find the frames cracked or broken since they are poorly constructed of particle board which has no structural integrity to begin with.
The bases are not original! They too were particle board and would break quite easily or suffer water damage very quickly. Pictures are not defined well enough for me to see but the photo of the rears, left speaker might have some water damage to the cabinet bottom. This would be very serious because once particle board swells it never goes back and the repair is extensive if at all possible.
I would not expect these to be completely up to spec for your A/B testing as they are which is why I posted that in my original post.
All the components can be refurbished to good as new but do check to be sure the components are correct. Be certain the HF drivers are 802-8Gs with tangerines and this can be seen with a light by looking into the horn and thru the screen. You are looking for a plug, orange in color and with slits cut like a pie.
Most purists would want to have the alnicos recharged in both drivers and to be sure the diaphrams are correct and in good shape. Tangerine phase plugs come unglued and will rattle when they do so if you buy, when you get them home remove the horns, remove the driver motors and give them a shake. If the plug is loose, do not play them, reglue them first or your diaphrams are toast. They will sound pretty bad anyway if loose but the plug will be pounding on the diaphram dome destroying it.
I search for better prices because I would automatically want to refurbish all components before putting them on line. Remember you are buying 30 year old speakers and some maintainance is deffinately required!

Gary

DaveV
12-09-2006, 07:25 AM
I'm remembering the morning in October I had to make the 4 hour trip east of Atlanta to pick up my 19's. The trip back seemed even longer! I paid $1000 for my pair but I ended up sending the 802's to Great Plains because one diaphram was functional but not right and I may have one woofer cone that isn't original so eventually the woofers will go out to be looked at and at least recharged. Add the cost of the rental truck and driver repairs and I'll be around $1600. Your Dads 19's do look like oak so that in itself might make them worth more because they seem to be less common. My grilles are in very good shape but I'll never use them because I love looking at the drivers but good grilles are important to some so they do add to the value for sure. I just felt that it was now or never because 19's don't usually show up so close to me. The last pair remotely close would have cost between $500 and $600 to move and who knows what I would have gotten. It's a crap shoot for sure. What I found most confusing was the Tangerine Phase Plug. In looking down the horn throats with a flashlight I saw copper/orange color things with thin radial spokes behind the bug screen but not being an orange color like the fruit I was still not sure I was getting 802-8G's but it turns out they are so don't expect a real bright orange color like I did. If you have a great seller that stands behind the product with nothing to hide they might let you remove the drivers but the 802-8G's probably won't have a label on them anyway so looking down the horn is really the best way. Some new owners say they sound great and are afraid to touch them and others have replaced the xovers with homebrews or the Iconic replacement. This along with other things might suggest that some xover caps survived better than others. A fellow in another forum that is a knowledgeable Altec fan says his newly acquired 19's sound fantastic and they must if he says so.
Mine did too until my excitement wore off some and I noticed distortion even at low levels. New caps took care of that problem but the tweaking continues. Now that I've heard the 19's I can't believe I lived with Flamencos for so long. I think the 19's are way smoother and way bigger sounding but I still think added tweeters crossed over high add another layer of depth and clarity as they did to the Flamencos. Good luck and have a safe trip.

Dave

Gary L
12-09-2006, 08:08 AM
Looking into the bug screens you are either going to see these that look like spokes in a whell or pie slices.
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v722/Gamalot/32_1.jpg


OR these that are sliced in a circular patern.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v722/Gamalot/Set58_01-1.jpg

Just my opinion here but if either is attached to an 800 series driver and the diaphrams are the same I seriously doubt many would even hear a difference. An 808-8A and 802-8G with the same diaphram is almost identicle in sound quality to my ears and they are the same motor just with different phase plugs.

I think for the sake of peace of mind the best thing any 19 owner can do is have all the drivers zapped so you know all is well and within spec.
You would not buy a 30 year old classic car and NOT change the oil and do some maint. so why should a 30 year old speaker be different?

Gary

Storm
12-09-2006, 08:17 AM
Thanks guys for the advice.

I will certainly bring a flashlight and will test these speakers first before I move them. So, if there is any problem with anything, I am sure to hear it.

I will post comments later tonight and add photos. I will take pictures of everything.

:)

Leaving in about 20 minutes.

hjames
12-09-2006, 08:45 AM
Hey - good luck to ya! And a safe drive!


Thanks guys for the advice.

I will certainly bring a flashlight and will test these speakers first before I move them. So, if there is any problem with anything, I am sure to hear it.

I will post comments later tonight and add photos. I will take pictures of everything.

:)

Leaving in about 20 minutes.

Gary L
12-09-2006, 11:50 AM
OK, Now that Storm is on the road we can really mess with him!

Just kidding and hope all goes well.

Hey Heather, I sure would like to see a blow up of your Avitar pic. Looks pretty sweet but the magnifiers don't show much.

Gary

hjames
12-09-2006, 12:10 PM
OK, Now that Storm is on the road we can really mess with him!

Just kidding and hope all goes well.

Hey Heather, I sure would like to see a blow up of your Avatar pic. Looks pretty sweet but the magnifiers don't show much.

Gary

Let me see --
Closeup of the 4320s - with added slot tweeter (http://www.audioheritage.org/vbulletin/showpost.php?p=107604&postcount=33)

And - mid thread of the refurb project (http://www.audioheritage.org/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=9796&page=2)

But - right now I'm in the midst of emptying the shelves so I can move the CD shelves out of the room and bring the speakers down to floor level for the next set of changes ...

Gary L
12-09-2006, 12:37 PM
Very nice Heather! Think I would be getting the speakers down to ear level also!
It never ends, even when you finally get it right.

Wish you were here when I was building the grills for my Altecs. We could have had Stereo Ryobi's.:applaud:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v722/Gamalot/DSCN0923.jpg

Gary

hjames
12-09-2006, 03:16 PM
I remember seeing those when I first got here last November and started
reading all the threads here. Those are gorgeous! I really love the base-platforms, the boxes, and what you did with the grills ... splendid!

Real inspirations! My long term is to redo mine into 4 ways similar to the 4344/45 studio monitors (with 15" woofs, rather than the 18" woofers).
But project today is moving boxes and I've got a bit more to do before dinner and unwinding with my honey and a movie ...
I've posted an updated room pi (http://www.audioheritage.org/vbulletin/showpost.php?p=137520&postcount=48)x in that 4320 thread ... so I don't hijack Storm's thread here ...







Very nice Heather! Think I would be getting the speakers down to ear level also!
It never ends, even when you finally get it right.

Wish you were here when I was building the grills for my Altecs. We could have had Stereo Ryobi's.:applaud:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v722/Gamalot/DSCN0923.jpg

Gary

Gary L
12-09-2006, 04:05 PM
HIJACK my A$$, Storm is out with his Dad doing a road trip and probably having a blast!
While the cats away the mice shall play and we are all waiting for the updates when they get home!

All kidding aside, like the room you set up better now but you might want them up a bit to bring them to ear level. Speakers are funny this way and want to be in your face.

Gary

hjames
12-09-2006, 05:24 PM
HIJACK my A$$, Storm is out with his Dad doing a road trip and probably having a blast!
While the cats away the mice shall play and we are all waiting for the updates when they get home!

All kidding aside, like the room you set up better now but you might want them up a bit to bring them to ear level. Speakers are funny this way and want to be in your face.

Gary
Well - I've a number of ideas what to do with the speakers now that they are coming back down into the listening plane. Of course, the first thing I have to do is rotate the slot tweeters back 90 degrees (now that the speakers aren't laying on their sides anymore). After than I can make a pair of pedestal-bases to get the slots and horns at ear level.

Storm
12-10-2006, 02:59 AM
Got the speakers home safe and sound.

Just got done doing a quick comparison and everyone is correct, they are a bit more "tame" - but I really do enjoy mine. I dont know if it is because I have listened to them for so long and are adapt to them, but all seriousness aside, I prefer the 846's over the Model 19's.

The tangerine phase plug was there and intact. We were able to have a listen to them - very nice seller. Even gave my dad $150.00 off for veneer damage - heck, that can be fixed.

My dad is super excited and I don't blame him. At least they are in the family and he told me I will inherit them.

Gary - you are right, we did have a BLAST!

The guy who sold them told me that yes, he did have them on a couple months ago, but they had different drivers - 806A's. He purchased the 802-8G's from someone who was going to do a DIY project, but found a set of 19's, so he scrapped that idea.

I feel confident that the previous owner of the drivers looked at them - he is probably part of this forum - are you? This seller paid $400.00 for the drivers, which as we all know is dirt cheap because a pair sold last month for over $1k!

I slipped my hand in the slot and felt the back of both and I feel very confident they are stock - 416 8B, because when I opened mine up, they had the same texture and feel to the metal frame.

They sound great, by the way.

Now I completely understand the Valencia vs. Model 19 debate. As with any speaker, it is all about preference. I like the "IN YOUR FACE" approach with the horns on the Valencias and my dad likes the more "REFINED" approach to the Model 19's. Either way, I can't complain, I have two of the best speakers Altec ever produced.

I am extremely glad I was able to do the comparison. Now I can rest easy and enjoy my 846U's.

All in all it was about a 10 hour round trip. Took the van, much easier on the gas - total was only about $80.00, way cheaper than freight shipping. Plus, I got to spend the day with my father - that is always a plus!

Before we put them into the truck tomorrow afternoon, does anyone want to know anything? I have a couple pictures, but not great.

Yes, there is water damage, but it is contained to the very bottom and did not effect the edge of the side - easy repair. And there is minor veneer damage.

Heck, what do you want for 30 year old speakers. All my dad cares about is that they are sonically in good shape.

Oh yeah, I forgot...if he wants to "update" the crossovers, how can he do that? Can someone help me on that one?

And yes, the base is not original - but at least someone did a decent job, it is real wood. I can understand why the original would break over time, mine are almost gone. I should replace mine. My dad is going to take them off and paint them black, which I think is a good idea. He is going to leave the veneer alone for now because like I told him - makes no sense making them pretty, don't have a wife to please and that way if he does damage them some more, it is not a big deal.

Well...off to bed, it is nearly 4am. I will post pictures later on today...stay posted.

:D

-Storm.

Gary L
12-10-2006, 04:22 AM
Glad all went well and you got a small refund. Kind of like they paid their own freight!
I am not at all suprised at your liking the ones you have better. Speakers have a tendency to grow on us and we tend to base others on the sound we know and are comfortable with.
You never did say if the grill frames were cracked, broken or just need some new cloth.
I have seen many 19s with no bases on them and the damage from dampness is a slow killer considering the particle board material and the way it sucks moisture right in. They are designed to be up off the floor and the base is an important part for both form and function and to allow some ventilation between the bottom and the floor surface.
As for the XO update, there are many here who have posted results with various cap replacments so check the previous threads for recommendations.
I have no idea what woofer is in your Valencias but would think it is a 416-8A model with or with out a cover over the magnet structure. The 416-8B has no cover & no screws to hold it on as it is a one piece part of the molded frame and not removable. Look at the pics I posted and if you can feel screws or screw holes in the rear of the magnet then they are not 416-8Bs. From the pics I can see they are the 16" frames but could be the 416-8A wide frame which in no way is a bad thing but just not the 8B model.

Gary

Storm
12-10-2006, 10:29 AM
The frames are in really good shape. No grilles are broken, but on one of the speakers, one of the "velcro" connectors is missing.

So, then what should I do about the "slow killer?" - the water damage.

I was shocked too - from everyone saying that the 19's were an upgrade and they are better for home use, I was almost sure I would like them.

I will post pictures soon.

The water damage all the way on the bottom and only went up about 2" inches. We don't live in a humid environment, so I doubt it will ever become an issue.

I guess this is no different from the 4343 vs 4350 debate, or any other speaker battle.

I have learned so much from this thread. I am so glad I was able to listen to them because now I have a great appreciation for the speakers I do have.

:p

-Storm.

JBLRaiser
12-10-2006, 10:50 AM
The frames are in really good shape. No grilles are broken, but on one of the speakers, one of the "velcro" connectors is missing.

So, then what should I do about the "slow killer?" - the water damage.

I was shocked too - from everyone saying that the 19's were an upgrade and they are better for home use, I was almost sure I would like them.

I will post pictures soon.

The water damage all the way on the bottom and only went up about 2" inches. We don't live in a humid environment, so I doubt it will ever become an issue.

I guess this is no different from the 4343 vs 4350 debate, or any other speaker battle.

I have learned so much from this thread. I am so glad I was able to listen to them because now I have a great appreciation for the speakers I do have.

:p

-Storm.

Whenever a 30 year old electronic acquisition is made, doing a few tests by a reputable audio professional should be made. It has a pretty sophisticated crossover network(IMHO) that could be failing. Especially since they have had water damage. Moisture is not electronics friendly. Don't be so quick to make your judgements. It's certainly NOT plug and play.

Storm
12-10-2006, 11:41 AM
No, the water damage is on the very bottom and on the opposite side of the crossover.

They sound fine when hooked up. They sound like a mine, only tamed a bit in the mids and highs.

I feel confident that they are up to spec and are working and functionally sound.

Thank you.

JBLRAISER - do you have a pair?

-Storm.

;)

DaveV
12-10-2006, 02:44 PM
Storm,

It will however be interesting to see if you change your mind some should your father "upgrade" the crossovers. I fully understand preference as I love horns, vintage tube equipment and LP's but after listening to an Ahmad Jamal Trio LP on my 19's earlier today there is a big difference from what I heard on my Flamencos. The bass is so much better, the piano sounds more real, especially the lower bass notes, the general "air" is much better and the soundstage is huge. With mono recordings the 19's totally disappear and the sound is smack dab in the center. I find that male and female voices sound more natural on the 19's too. The two biggest improvements for me so far were replacing the caps and the large woofer inductor. I also had a problem with pronounced one note bass with the Flamencos and the 19's don't boom like that in the same room in the same spots.

Dave

Mr. Widget
12-10-2006, 03:25 PM
I also had a problem with pronounced one note bass with the Flamencos...For whatever reason it seems that:

I like the "IN YOUR FACE"...
Is the operative concept here...

I have learned from talking to a wide variety of people here and comparing those conversations to the research done at Harman by Dr. Floyd Toole that anecdotally it would seem that while the majority of people prefer an accurate loudspeaker that doesn't produce "one note bass" or have an "in your face" presence peak or some other anomaly... there are many who are drawn to this site who do like and actually seek out systems with a certain coloration or characteristic sound.

I think Storm has luckily stumbled upon a system that satisfies his needs.


Widget

Storm
12-10-2006, 03:44 PM
Yes, Widget - you are correct. I have found the system that does it all in my book and I am eternally grateful that on my quest for speakers, the 846U's were my first purchase. I feel sorry for all the people out there who go from speaker to speaker looking for true happiness.

Thank you for your insight, Widget.

It is very true - why I love the accuracy that the 19's bring, the 846U's have that sound that is undeniable and real.

Raw.

I guess that is what drew me to these speakers in the first place. Just in the case that live performances are not perfect on every level, so are loudspeakers.

I do give Altec credit where credit is due and commend them on an excellent job in the creation of the Model 19. It is in my opinion one of the best loudspeakers out there, 2 way of course!

I hope that with the coming of the new year that all of us can find that perfect speaker, sit back, and forget about life for a while. Just crank up that music and delve into your favorite lounge chair.

I COMMAND YOU...GO NOW!!!!

:D

-Storm.

SEAWOLF97
12-10-2006, 10:24 PM
http://www.perfectmarketaudio.com/altec/Altec%2019%20Test%20page%201.pdf

Zilch
12-10-2006, 11:18 PM
Looks like CBS Labs got it right:

http://audioheritage.org/vbulletin/showthread.php?p=128826&#post128826

[Wants a UHF driver.... :yes: ]

Storm
12-11-2006, 06:25 PM
Here are the pictures I promised.

-Storm

:applaud:

Gary L
12-11-2006, 08:03 PM
Look pretty nice to me! So whats the verdict, They still look like OAK to me with a walnut stain.
I know exactly what you like about your Valencias so I am not surprised you favor them. I do think if these where in your home to stay and you listened for a period of time comparing both, you would most likely feel differently after some time. After a while the Vals just hung around doing nothing while the 19s cranked the tunes. YMMV.

The above article from CBS Labs was quite interesting and I think spot on regarding the 19s. It would be great to see the same articles on other competitors they mentioned if you could dig any of those up. At the time the JBL L 200 was its closest rival and to my ears the L 200 got blown away. Klipshorns were also around but at a much higher price and there were a few other bahemouths not even worth mention, CV.

Gary

Dylanl
12-11-2006, 09:14 PM
Here is the info that came with my 19s. It's original and talks about the settings on the x over being in the optimum range not turned down to the left as shown in another post.

Dylanl
12-11-2006, 09:17 PM
Wondering why my info does not match GARY L's about the settings from this posting?

http://audioheritage.org/vbulletin/showthread.php?p=128826&#post128826

I wonder what the results would be when set at the optimum settings. (Gary quote)

This should give you the answer, at least I think it should?

Zilch
12-11-2006, 10:15 PM
Wondering why my info does not match GARY L's about the settings from this posting?

http://audioheritage.org/vbulletin/showthread.php?p=128826&#post128826 What doesn't match? :dont-know

Gary L
12-12-2006, 05:09 AM
What doesn't match? :dont-know

I am wondering the same Zilch!
Thank you Dylan for the info but I was simply pointing out that the 15 and 19 XOs have different positions on the dials for what Altec considers the optimum position.
I know on both my 15s and 19s I have the dials turned to where they sound best to me in the rooms they are in. If I change the speakers around I then change the settings to dial them in and I find these adjustments to be very pleasing. YMMV and you are welcome to set them any where you like.
I think, with the knob pointer directly under the word optimum on each dial is where Altec feels is the flat spot. Note this is a very different setting on the 19s then on the 15s.
Others here tend to feel no dials on the XOs and no tone controls from the amp is the purest in sound and least coloration which I can't argue but I still like my dials and the ability to adjust to suit my preferences.

Gary

Dylanl
12-12-2006, 11:28 AM
I though Gary was saying that to set the x overs flat they would be turned all the way to the left as his pictures show. That is why I was asking the question. That had me thinking that I was not interpeting thing correctly.

From your last post we both feel the same. Gary did you upgrade your crossover at all?

Gary L
12-12-2006, 01:17 PM
Now I am with you Dylan.
In answer to your question about upgrading, all I have done is new caps in my 15 XOs. I have recently purchased two pairs of 19 XOs that are still stock and not yet in cabinets and a friend and member here made me another set of 19 XOs but I sent him a set of stripped chassis from extra 15s I had--- They are the same body.
I have all the other components for two pairs of 19s at GPA right now and will build some cabinets this winter.
Bill is having fitts with one of my 416-8Bs bought off ebay as it has a rust issue in the gap area, probably was a stadium driver at some point and out in the weather. Not yet sure how this will turn out.
If I do anything with the 19 stock XOs it would be to replace the caps, probably with daytons from PE. I have never heard much about coils going bad and will be testing out the new 19 XOs that have new coils to see how they perform. Here,
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v722/Gamalot/15-19XO2.jpg

Gary

Tom Brennan
12-12-2006, 07:52 PM
I was gonna replace the caps in the 19s i recently bought, even ran up to Parts Express and bought the Dayton caps.

Then my wife says why don't you leave them alone, they sound great, how do you know you won't screw them up?

Wise thinking. So I'm gonna leave the crossovers alone and later on build complete new ones, that way I won't have ruined the old ones if the new ones stink.

Dylanl
12-12-2006, 08:22 PM
Tom, I can't see caps hurting your x overs or changing the sound of them. If anything it should only help. You can keep the 30 year old parts and if needed solder them back in if you feel you lost something. As long as the values aren't changed what have you done? You may think this is butchery but here is a pictutre of what I did. Tom I think you already saw this:

Storm
12-12-2006, 11:07 PM
Just got back home from helping my dad take his Model 19's up to his 7th Floor Condo in downtown Phoenix.

The security guard looked at us funny and I am sure a couple other tennants are mystified. The look on their faces was priceless!

My dad is driving them with a Vintage Pioneer Receiver and BOY do they sound good!

We listened to the best of Sade and INCREDIBLE! They sound 10x better in his condo than my room!

However, I would not sell my for the world or even trade them for a pair of 19's. I am quite happy with the pair i've got and they are staying with me forever.

Regardless, I am thrilled that there is now a pair of Model 19's in the family.

Now only if I could get my sisters into vintage audio. My sister told me one day about my Valencias, she said - "they sound just like the speakers in my car." Whatever, I know and we know the difference - that's all that matters.

:)

Here are a couple pictures:

Gary L
12-13-2006, 05:36 AM
We did kind of HIJACK Storms thread and got off on the XO discussion.

Great discussion to have and I am sure we could have some upgrade info exchange if someone cares to start a new thread in the DIY.
I am no tech so will be happy to read and give what little input I can but many here have tried various upgrades with less then stellar results.
Lets move it to where it belongs and continue there in the DIY forum.

Gary

louped garouv
12-13-2006, 11:32 AM
Tom, I can't see caps hurting your x overs or changing the sound of them. If anything it should only help. You can keep the 30 year old parts and if needed solder them back in if you feel you lost something. As long as the values aren't changed what have you done? You may think this is butchery but here is a pictutre of what I did. Tom I think you already saw this:

I know someone, who I trust very much, that says the indiscriminate changing and "modernizing" of caps may in fact have an effect on the sound, and that swapping out the older style caps can sometimes dramatically change the sound you get from your equipment.... sometimes for the "better" sometimes not for the better....


He had experimented with swapping out some older Frako caps which are NLA in a preamp, and did not care for the unit after the "hot rodding" was done... the Frakos were probably from sometime between 85-94...

westcott
12-13-2006, 06:19 PM
Stumbled across this thread while doing some research.
Thought I would share photos of the Altec Valencias in a walnut finish and my new home theater. The Altecs are back to two channel duty in the the master bedroom. Amplification solutions have changed over the many years my father and I originally owned these beautiful A7 speakers in disguise.

http://www.webshots.com/user/jbwestcott

Seem to be real poplular in Asia now.

Happy Holidays

Storm
12-13-2006, 07:03 PM
Yeah, I just purchased a new Harman/Kardon 2 Channel Home receiver.

I hooked them up and put on Pink Floyd Pulse Concert - INCREDIBLE!

I can clearly tell a difference between a 2 channel receiver and a 5.1, etc.

Can someone explain to me why I hear such a difference?

I am so fortunate to own a pair of history. They will forever be in my posession. When my 5 year old nephew comes over, he congregates in my room. We listen to music and sometimes his DVDs - kids stuff of course. And if he enjoys them and wants them when I pass away, they will be his.

I wish my parents had something like that, because memories of listening to speakers is priceless. Considering music recalls memories - I can recall many things when I crank up my tunes. I suppose that is what music is all about - life.

I say to anyone who owns a version of the VOTTs like the fortunate ones on this thread, KEEP THEM! Do not take them apart and sell on eBay! Especially when I started thinking I could make money and then purchase cheaper speakers, like I do everything else I sell. But, and a BIG but - there are no other speakers in this price range, new or old, that can surpass the imaging and sound definition of these classics.

:)

-Storm.

Gary L
12-13-2006, 07:19 PM
Quoted question by Storm;



I can clearly tell a difference between a 2 channel receiver and a 5.1, etc.

Can someone explain to me why I hear such a difference?



Don't quote me on the date history but stereo has been around since I was a kid. 5.1 maybe since the mid 80s early 90s.

Most 5.1 units are BPC in my opinion until you spend major bucks.

I have hooked my speakers to a number of newer receivers and have been completely disappointed every time. I use Vintage gear almost exclusively and find it is the best if made prior to 1980.
My Yamaha HT receiver boasts some rediculous power numbers but it sure can't equate into SPLs on my speakers and music tends to be very hollow and lifeless thru it and in the stereo mode.

Gary

Storm
12-13-2006, 07:23 PM
Why on earth is there not a bigger market on home receivers - 2 channel?

I would think Yamaha would have a line and Sony would, too.

Until I searched at Fry's Electronics, I had no idea they made a home theater receiver in two channel.

On Pink Floyd, Pulse - there is a stereo setting. I changed it to 5.1 and it sounded like crud.

Is 2 channel better for only two speakers because when it is 5.1, the sound gets chopped into more pieces and once the sound gets to the speakers, it stinks?

I am so glad I now know there are two channel receivers out there that can handle the attachment of TIVO and CD players.

:)

-Storm

clmrt
12-14-2006, 03:15 AM
I think "Home Theater" is just a marketing term. I mean, if you're watching a flick, in your home, no matter what playback is involved, you could call it a Home Theater.

How you get the 5.1 delivered to your amp matters. If you have a stereo receiver, it will not have an on-board surround decoder. It will require analog interconnects, or possibly a two-channel digital feed if it has internal DAC.

That said, your DVD player now comes into play. Seeing as you are concerned only with two main channels, you should be using the analog outputs, or, if possible, the digital feed - so long as you configure the digital output for stereo only, wether by DVD player menu default, or by selecting the stereo track on the disc itself.

Choosing 5.1 in a 2.0 playback chain will strip away 4 of the 6 channels of encoded audio, and I'd be suprised if the digital connection, feeding a 2.0 receiver, worked at all in 5.1 mode.

clmrt
12-14-2006, 03:22 AM
And the two-channel receiver world is quite alive, from low-buck $100 TEACs and Sherwoods, $200-$400 Sony, Yamaha, Denon, HK's, $500-$2000 Music Halls, Rotels, Cambridges, Outlaws...lots of chioces.

Even more integrateds.

Gary L
12-14-2006, 04:34 AM
From my experience you can buy a very fine stereo receiver made between 1975 and 1980, have it cleaned, updated and fully checked out and spend less. The real plus here is in the total cost because to buy a current model that comes close to the specs of a good vintage model will cost 2 - 3 times the cash.

Most of what is made today is pretty much disposable when it breaks and would cost more to repair then it is worth. Not so for the vintage ones made durring the golden years.

These are my personal favorites. Sansui G 9000s are rated at 160 watts/Ch. but both produce well over 200WPC and have excellent FM & Phono sections. All my Altecs run on these and nothing I have had including Luxman & Yamaha seperates even comes close.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v722/Gamalot/TwoGs.jpg

Gary

Storm
12-14-2006, 10:43 AM
Gary -

Can the Sansui hookup my TV, DVD, Tivo, etc?

Thanks.

-Storm

Gary L
12-14-2006, 11:01 AM
I don't know whats required for those units. It has inputs for AUX, Tape 1&2 and phono 1&2.
I am no wizard here but I do have my CD/DVD hooked to AUX, my XM hooked to Tape 1 and my TV to Tape 2 and all play fine.
When I want to watch HT 5.1 movies I made a box with banana jacks so all I have to do is switch the Altecs to the movie jacks and they become my fronts off the Yamaha HT receiver. It is not possible to send a signal to my altecs from both receivers at the same time because they are hooked to one or the other and never both.

I suppose someone here could figure out how to hook all your stuff up at once but you can only ever get stereo from this unit and I am not the one to ask with this stuff.

I do want to add this. If when you did the showdown between your Vals and the 19s you were useing a HT receiver then I call FOUL! My 19s sound just OK on the HT and they come to life on a real receiver or with a good amp/pre set up.

Gary

Storm
12-14-2006, 11:05 AM
I think my new Harman/Kardon will do the trick. It has already.

I only have two speakers, so stereo is the best option.

That is why I think when I did have a yamaha 5.1 and hooked up just the two speakers, there was less output by the speakers than there is now.

If there are any vintage receivers that can hook up all of what I need, I will immediately buy vintage and return the Harman. I doubt it though, because the advent of home receivers for the whole use did not happen until the 1980s.

I am only 22, by the way.

:)

-Storm

Gary L
12-14-2006, 11:19 AM
I would bet if I had those components I would figure it out and get them running thru my G 9000 as long as they don't require the optical type of connections. If they can run from analog RCA ins and outs then I am pretty sure it would work.
My G 9000s are 8 years older then you are!:D

Ducatista47
12-18-2006, 08:17 AM
I think "Home Theater" is just a marketing term. I mean, if you're watching a flick, in your home, no matter what playback is involved, you could call it a Home Theater.

How you get the 5.1 delivered to your amp matters. If you have a stereo receiver, it will not have an on-board surround decoder. It will require analog interconnects, or possibly a two-channel digital feed if it has internal DAC.

That said, your DVD player now comes into play. Seeing as you are concerned only with two main channels, you should be using the analog outputs, or, if possible, the digital feed - so long as you configure the digital output for stereo only, wether by DVD player menu default, or by selecting the stereo track on the disc itself.

Choosing 5.1 in a 2.0 playback chain will strip away 4 of the 6 channels of encoded audio, and I'd be suprised if the digital connection, feeding a 2.0 receiver, worked at all in 5.1 mode.

I have a Denon DVD-1920 disc player, a nearly current if not current model. It has RCA analog outputs for all 5.1 channels with a stereo option. That stereo output is taken care of by the player, a dedicated pair of jacks.

It is basically a DVD player for folks who like serious sound and use analog gear to reproduce it. You know, us!

The stereo playback is great to my ears. If you want 5.1 just add more amps & speakers. Bonus, all analog after the Denon. Use vintage receivers, WE theater gear, Dynacos, Heathkits, whatever you have or can get.

The one thing, you need a real tv, not a monitor, to decode the video signal. Many (most) big flatscreens have no electronics to process signals, just to play them. A regular TV with S-video or component jacks is fine. The Denon also has optical and HDMI outputs. I have a 32" HD CRT with HDMI and every other input known.

Bottom line, no need to soil the place with chip amp home theater gear. Leave that crap to the Best Buy crowd.

Clark in Peoria

SoundFrenic1
12-20-2006, 02:31 AM
I have just picked up a pair of Altec Lansing Model Seven and have to say they sound awesome driven off a solid state amp made 25 years ago.

My System Consists of:-

Phillips HiFi TA8000 Amp
Altec Model Seven speakers
Technics SH8015 Equlizer
Fountain SX3030 AM/FM Reciever
AKAI CS-703D Tape Deck

And soon a pair of retro Technics Speakers.

JBLRaiser
12-20-2006, 04:51 PM
Why on earth is there not a bigger market on home receivers - 2 channel?

I would think Yamaha would have a line and Sony would, too.

Until I searched at Fry's Electronics, I had no idea they made a home theater receiver in two channel.

On Pink Floyd, Pulse - there is a stereo setting. I changed it to 5.1 and it sounded like crud.

Is 2 channel better for only two speakers because when it is 5.1, the sound gets chopped into more pieces and once the sound gets to the speakers, it stinks?

I am so glad I now know there are two channel receivers out there that can handle the attachment of TIVO and CD players.

:)

-Storm
http://img.inkfrog.com/pix/coolbluez/SX_1980_FRT.jpg

SoundFrenic1
12-20-2006, 06:01 PM
I know what you mean i found it hard to get the one i have now. these day its all about 5.1 when the real sound comes from 2 channel amps and old speakers.

Gary L
12-20-2006, 06:29 PM
I will take this over that any day of the week and twice on Sundays!

Gary

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v722/Gamalot/G9000LR.jpg

JBLRaiser
12-20-2006, 07:06 PM
I will take this over that any day of the week and twice on Sundays!

Gary

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v722/Gamalot/G9000LR.jpg

is the mother of all vintage receivers. 270 watts per channel. Weighs 78 lbs.

Of course, that G9000 is awesome as well. Retailed for over a $1000 in the 70's. Really no need for anything else.

SoundFrenic1
12-20-2006, 07:35 PM
nice sansui not many of them left in that condition.

Gary L
12-20-2006, 08:18 PM
I had an SX 1980 back around 1978 and it did have gobbs of power but did not have the warm sound of the G 9000s. Power is great but certainly not everything.
I have 4 G 9000s and this one is my daily user and I highly recommend them to anyone wanting great sound from a gorgeous vintage receiver.
In todays market you would have a very hard time finding anything close to either of these but the SX 1980 commands rediculous dollars and in my opinion does not have the smooth performance of the much less expensive G 9000. Sansui also made two larger receivers to compete with the SX 1980, G 22000 and G 33000 and I would not take either of them over the sound quality of the G 9000 either. Collector values are one part of the equasion but all I want is excellent sound in a sturdy and durable package.

I don't fault any of them but having owned many I am very pleased with the big G.

Gary

SEAWOLF97
12-20-2006, 08:48 PM
Have a large Sansui 8080db that is quite nice too. Great vintage sound.

SoundFrenic1
12-20-2006, 09:39 PM
I have a Phillips TA8000 and it has smooth sound and great power for a small amp. it does around 45Watts into 8 Ohms and 80Watts into 4 Ohms and it drives my altec model sevens quite well. Better than my Pioneer SX-253R.

As iv been toled "There is Nothing Like A Vintage Solid State Amp"

Mr. Widget
12-21-2006, 10:40 AM
In todays market you would have a very hard time finding anything close to either of these but the SX 1980 commands rediculous dollars and in my opinion does not have the smooth performance of the much less expensive G 9000.I am not particularly enchanted with receivers... I do have a Marantz 2275 on the shelf and would never sell it... I also like the older "Blue Face" look over the newer silver fronts of these receivers, though I can see the appeal there as well. Your statement about the big Pioneer going for so much more than the big Sansui made me curious. I just glanced at recent eBay prices and both have sold for well over $1K in recent months... that is a heck of a lot for a potentially tired old piece of gear.

You certainly won't get all of the bells and whistles that came packed in these big brutes, but for that kind of money, I'd think it would be pretty easy to get better electronics in a newer set of separates... not brand new, but maybe just one decade old instead of several.

I certainly concur that contemporary surround receivers suck... even the fairly expensive ones do not have the sonics of any of this vintage gear when the vintage stuff is running up to spec.


Widget

mikebake
12-21-2006, 12:20 PM
Okay, so here we are on page three of the thread, well into vintage receivers, but where is the showdown???

Zilch
12-21-2006, 12:22 PM
The showdown happened.

Model 19 is too "Refined."

"In your FACE" is the desired sonic charcter.... :p

mikebake
12-21-2006, 12:36 PM
Oh, that was it? Hmmmm.

Gary L
12-21-2006, 12:36 PM
Here we can agree and disagree on a few points!

Most SX 1980s command the well over $1000 price while very few G 9000s reach it. Typically a nice G 9000 can be had for around $500.

"Potentially Tired" is a term with some merit however what might be tired or worn electronically is still redily available for replacement and or upgrading unlike much newer models that tend to incorporate many ICs and digital components that are simply unobtainable. Transistors and capacitors will always be available and in most cases these are what might go bad in the Golden era Vintage units.

Seperates Vs Receivers is an age old argument but I do challenge you to check the specs of the G 9000 and then find any other that can meet or beat them in this price range. FM and Phono sections alone will be pretty impressive to those who seek the numbers game and although rated conservatively at 160 WPC most are easily capeable of producing well over 200 WPC before clip. I have had very nice Luxman and Yamaha seperates and hands down the G 9000 sounded much better then both and although very large, made for a neater set up all around and many still love the classic looks of monster sized receivers.

I personally feel that when the major companies began to fold or loose market share around 1980, the very best of the stereo systems have suffered or become very high dollar items. Durring the mid 1970s the wars were on and the major companies were in battle to out do the competition. This is where the vast majority of JBL and Altecs lines were at their peaks as well as Sansui, Pioneer, Marantz, and many of the other major producers. The gear that many of us lust for today came from this special point in time and the big receivers should not be discounted from this period. Even the tube gear from this era is highly sought after and quite valuable and I do suspect JBL and Altec made large format home speakers to meet the demands of the high output SS amps that were being produced at that time.
If you have never had the pleasure of listening to a properly functioning G 9000 then you owe it to yourself to hear what they had packed inside these extremely well built tanks. I think some of the very best designs in electronic engineering came from this period and most technicians who work on these would agree. The G 9000 is one of the best bargins of them all right now if it can be found in excellent cosmetic condition at a reasonable price and you make contact with a competent tech willing to do some fairly simple updating.

Gary

Zilch
12-21-2006, 02:35 PM
Tell me there's still a purpose to having FM other than what your standard clock radio would satisfy.... ;)

Gary L
12-21-2006, 03:50 PM
Tell me there's still a purpose to having FM other than what your standard clock radio would satisfy.... ;)


I CAN'T! I live on the west side of a mountain with all the decent stations being on the east side so FM sucks. My G 9000 does however pull them in just fine but then I have to listen to a million commercials for stuff I don't want and every now and then they play a tune I like or give a weather report.

I do like my XM radio and it plays just fine thru the Aux inputs.

Gary

JBLRaiser
12-21-2006, 04:51 PM
I CAN'T! I live on the west side of a mountain with all the decent stations being on the east side so FM sucks. My G 9000 does however pull them in just fine but then I have to listen to a million commercials for stuff I don't want and every now and then they play a tune I like or give a weather report.

I do like my XM radio and it plays just fine thru the Aux inputs.

Gary

bottom next to cassettes in bandwidth.

Mr. Widget
12-21-2006, 05:06 PM
"bottom next to cassettes in bandwidth...."

Hmmmm.... I think technology has added a rung or two to that ladder. My Nakamichi 700 Tri-Tracer sounds better than XM.


Widget

Storm
12-21-2006, 05:09 PM
I was thinking of getting XM, but is it worth it? Does it sound better than regular FM? At times, regular FM, even in Phoenix - which is a big city - is horrible.

I just rotate my CDs - have about 100 of them - and figure XM is for people who don't enjoy listening to actual music, but rather the "hits".

How much is XM anyways?

Can I hook it up to my receiver?

Thanks.

-Storm

Gary L
12-21-2006, 05:49 PM
Yes Storm, XM can hook up to about any unit that has an empty input set of jacks.

Sound quality for me is much better then FM every day and only tends to vary durring severe weather or very heavy cloud conditions.

One of the only reasons to have XM is commercial free music programming. You have a choice of what music you like as well as many other News, Talk and Comedy stations.

"Is it worth it"? Well, if you can't get decent FM and don't have time to spend DJing your own music all day long then XM is a great value.
You pay according to the subscription you purchase. Longer subscriptions are less costly then the standard 1 year contract. I buy 5 year contracts at a time and pay under $10 per month. I have one radio and numerous docking stations so I have it in both the cars and on four different portable and home units. The single radio head is what you pay the subscription for and you just switch it between your docks for music anywhere. Docks are sold as either car or home kits and come with the electrical connections and antennas.

Yea, I think it is very worth while but others are free to feel as they will.
I put my radio on Ch 46, Top Tracks and have a constant supply of the music I like best. CH 5 is 50s, 6 is 60s, 7 is 70s 8 is 80s and 9 is 90s.
You can find great Jazz, New Age, Classical, Country, Blues, Rock and about any venue you want on almost 200 Chs.

I have never heard the sonic purity discussed of the signal itself but expect it is as good as or better then any FM or Cassette and probably not as good as direct CDs.
Gary

Mr. Widget
12-21-2006, 05:58 PM
I have never heard the sonic purity discussed of the signal itself but expect it is as good as or better then any FM or Cassette and probably not as good as direct CDs.You don't need to hear it discussed... just listen for yourself. The wide range of available commercial free programming is quite tempting, but I am bothered by it's sonics... it definitely doesn't sound as good as good FM from a station that still spins vinyl and cares about their signal... and it doesn't sound as good as a compact cassette made on a quality machine in real time of a vinyl record or even of a CD.


Widget

johnaec
12-21-2006, 05:58 PM
BTW - if you have DirecTV satellite tv, it also includes XM radio via the dish, (for free).

John

Gary L
12-21-2006, 06:12 PM
You don't need to hear it discussed... just listen for yourself. The wide range of available commercial free programming is quite tempting, but I am bothered by it's sonics... it definitely doesn't sound as good as good FM from a station that still spins vinyl and cares about their signal... and it doesn't sound as good as a compact cassette made on a quality machine in real time of a vinyl record or even of a CD.


Widget

Probably correct Widget but then I don't get much of an FM signal here in the mountains so it is a Moot issue for me. 90% of my XM listening is in a car or from a dewalt boombox radio that I hook the XM thru. Not much for quality sound but it does provide an endless source of good tunes durring my work day and on various job sites. At home, I almost always spin my music and prefer the vinyl over any other formats.

Gary

SEAWOLF97
12-21-2006, 06:22 PM
I've had XM for about a year and a half.

It is $12.95/month. $10 to sign up. For that fee you also get streaming XM on your broadband internet connection.

I got the docking station for home and for truck. Can move back and forth easily. If you are traveling , you will get the same station anywhere in N. America.

It is essentially commercial free . They do push their own product a lot.

Sound quality is quite good. Better than cassette. When I play it through the 4412s, every one says WOW. But then I put in a CD they say "
even better"

I leave it on ch40 , Deep Tracks....many tunes that I've never heard b4. Album cuts that "are deep". They do live studio sessions that are really well recorded and usually major artists.
I loved the Eric Burdon XM concert.

yes, its not quite CD quality, but the "new to me" content more than makes up for that. additionally I like classic rock and most of that genre was not up to todays sonic standards anyway.

Mr. Widget
12-21-2006, 06:40 PM
Sound quality is quite good. Better than cassette.
I guess "the quality of a cassette" is a rather broad standard... I am actually amazed at the sound quality of the cassettes that my old Nak puts out... there is tape hiss and if that's a deal breaker for you then analog is likely not your bag, but if you don't mind a little tape hiss, the spatial cues are reproduced far better than what you get on CDs.

Widget

Gary L
12-21-2006, 07:02 PM
It is $12.95/month. $10 to sign up. For that fee you also get streaming XM on your broadband internet connection.

Ask Xm about deals when you extend your contract out to three and five years.
I have been a subscriber since its beginning and think I paid around $475 for the five year plan which is right around $8 per month and I know I am keeping it at least that long. They did increase the monthly subscription last year to $12.95 but kept the breaks for current customers and long term subscriptions.
All I can add is how sweet it is to not have to listen to 20 minutes of advertising every hour. Commercial free is worth its weight in gold to me and I wish TV could get off the commercial junk as well. Bad enough I have to pay for the signal to get to my house but I timed the commercials in a half hour show and it was nearly 13 minutes of the 30. Seems the more popular the show is the more commercials there are.

Gary

JBLRaiser
12-21-2006, 09:04 PM
I guess "the quality of a cassette" is a rather broad standard... I am actually amazed at the sound quality of the cassettes that my old Nak puts out... there is tape hiss and if that's a deal breaker for you then analog is likely not your bag, but if you don't mind a little tape hiss, the spatial cues are reproduced far better than what you get on CDs.

Widget

referred to as Nakamichi. I knew they were good but never have heard one. Always wanted a Dragon, but didn't pull the trigger. You've piqued my interest, though.

Mr. Widget
12-21-2006, 10:24 PM
A few years ago I saw a refurbished Nakamichi 700 Tri-Tracer with manuals and optional remote for $250... even though I had absolutely no need for such a thing I just couldn't say no... I had always thought they were absolutely beautiful... I bought it.:D

I only play it occasionally, but every time I do, I am stunned by just how good it is... there is a reason these things cost $700 when your basic Teac was $200.


Widget

SoundFrenic1
12-22-2006, 10:39 PM
There is not many like that in good condition.


Altec Model Seven Vs. B&W DM2

For those people who are interested me and a mate are having a home theatre war to see which system better and am ganna :D KILL HIS CHEAP SYSTEM:D evan if he uses his CREST Power Amp. My System sounds alot nicer than his a becides hes using car subs a bit over kill. that reminds me i need to get a new trebble pot for my amp as the old one is dead on one side.

Nightbrace
01-24-2007, 06:10 PM
Hmm, Storm, what are your findings??

Am considering buying a set of 878A Santiagos, how will they compare to the 19's? Never owned these or heard them before. Was hoping someone who has owned them both could let me know what the difference may be...

Gary L
01-24-2007, 07:02 PM
Wish I could help you with the Santiagos Nightbrace. I heard them many years ago when deciding on which ones to buy and I remember the 19s won the battle hands down so I bought them. I can't remember what the Santiagos where lacking though.
I know they have a 15" woofer but it is the 411-8A Vs the 416-8A in the Valencias and 19s. Also believe the SPL are a bit less but all the other components are the same, 811 horn with 806 driver. It is possible the woofer is the weak point and then it could also be possible to switch to 416s.
They are a nice looking speaker.

Gary

Nightbrace
01-24-2007, 11:21 PM
I agree, I have heard the same thing from a few others that the bass response is not quite as good, was hoping someone in the Altec world has had a chance to listen to them... My Altec 19's are killer, just wanting an extra pair just in case :)/

TnTn
01-28-2007, 09:54 PM
Nightbrace,

I have been reading posts here on and off and, man, you are a JBL poser. What is this talk of you wanting to buy more Altecs? One pair is enough (or do you have even more?). But if you must, I'd go for something like Storm's 846B or GPA's new 604-8HII in a box like the one below:

http://www.6moons.com/audioreviews/altec/dream.html

T.