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Thread: 250ti Maintenance Questions

  1. #1
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    250ti Maintenance Questions

    I have a pair of 250ti limiteds (original owner) and was wondering what the current availability of 035tia diaphrams, 104H and LE14H-1 recone kits is? A few years ago, I had a power surge mishap that wiped out the tweeters and a couple years before that, I had to recone/refoam the woofers. Finding a decent service company in New England proved to be an exercise in futility and frustration. A company in Weymouth, Mass. totally botched the woofers after they tried to fix the mess New England Speaker (Stoneham, Mass.) made of them. Eight months later, the fine folks at Brandywine Electronics in Maryland reconed the woofers - making them actually work for a change (the dopes in Weymouth, Ma. sent me back a woofer with the voice coil clearly audibly rubbing against the pole piece!) But I distinctly remember Brandywine having trouble locating the LE14H-1 recone kits - like there was only one left in the country at the time (on backorder). Is availability of parts for this flagship speaker still a problem? One of the reasons I was originally attracted to JBL stuff 30 years ago was first rate service and support from a nationwide network of trusted, experienced dealers - my have things changed! I was also hoping to locate a source for the 104H midrange recone as it appears on one of the drivers the cone is starting to lift from the surround edge in one spot - maybe this should just be glued back.
    Also, in my travels to find 035tia recone kits, I errantly picked up a few 035ti recone kits from a JBL service guy in New York who was going out of business. Still have one of these new in the original box that I'll be selling on ebay unless someone here buys it first.

  2. #2
    Senior Member rdgrimes's Avatar
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    Orange Co Speaker is a good source for proper kits and service. You can buy 035ti tweeter and 104H mids on the Bay for pretty cheap. The LE14H-1 re-foam kits from Orange Co are an exact fit and easy to install if done properly. There's no reason to re-cone any of these drivers unless the coils are FUBAR. If you don't mind spending a tad more, PM "Edgewound" on this forum and he can do the work for you also.

    As an alternative, you can ship the 250ti to me and I will do all this myself. I'll be sure to send you a thank-you card too!

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    250TI Maintenance

    After comparing the job Brandywine did reconing versus the previous two fools' "refoaming" jobs, I've become convinced that reconing is really the best way to service these. Since my Kenwood KR8050 died many years ago, I've been driving the 250's with a new Crown MA2400. The current capability of that amp is phenomenal and with the subsonic filter on the PL-2 preamp deactivated, on some older close miked recordings that have been transferred to CD - the woofers look like they're going to bust out of their baskets. I've been told by Bruce at Brandywine and have learned through hard experience that coil/spyder/surround alignment of the LE14H-1 is critical - especially given the excursions the driver is capable of. Besides, the way I see it, although the spyders are more durable than the surrounds, it's nice to be able to restore them to original at the same time. I've also heard that one advantage this unit has over the older Alnico designs (like my old L19's) is that at rebuild time - you can re-energize the ferrite magnet - thus with a recone and magnetic charge up - you essentially have a completely renewed unit at or near original factory specs. I didn't buy these second hand. I paid top dollar for them in the early 90's and am willing to pay a good price to continue maintaining them as I still believe there is nothing sonically superior out there at any price. I've compared these to everything from B&W to Mirage to Martin Logan. Everything else, while providing comparable tonal and imaging capabilities, has suffered in a very important and overlooked respect - compression. After nearly 20 years of ownership, I have still not found a single speaker system that is superior in overall tonal balance AND dynamics - most compress the signal noticeably - particularly close miked stringed instruments, woodwinds, and voices. The only speaker line I haven't heard yet is Revel - although from what I've been told - those are JBL products dressed up in fancy clothes for people with more money than brains.

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    Have you looked into 14-3 woofers? Rubber surrounds! Approved by the designer of the speaker as a drop in . I have them. Look into Charge coupling the Xover also

    Mark
    Think center channel for 250TIs; (2) 108s, a 104 and a 44ti, now what?

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    250ti Maintenance

    Yup Mark,

    I read elsewhere in the forums that the 250 enclosures will accept the LE14H-3 so I suppose that will be an option when the time comes - too bad though - if the vital dimensions are similar (cone, voice coil, spyder sizing) it would make sense to build a recone kit that fits all LE14H units. But alas, what do I know - I don't own a huge multinational spitting out new components and product lines every two years that will become obsolete the following year. I'm sure Harman has done a lot of good for companies like Crown, JBL, and Infinity. But I just wish it would respect what made these companies special institutions in the field of sound reenforcement/reproduction - durable, well made products backed up by equally long lasting and competent service. If the trend towards product line proliferation and obsolescence continues - I'll be putting my 250's up for sale on ebay - replacing them with B&W 801's sooner than later.

    Anyways, does the charge coupling really make that much of a noticeable difference? How much work is involved? Does anyone have a kit set up with instructions for those willing to take a soldering iron to the crossover?

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    The strange thing about the 250ti

    In the Engineering Standard, it lists the 033ti as the tweeter.

    In the Technical Manual, it lists it as an 044ti.

    Looks like they changed the tweeter somewhere along the line. I popped the backs off my cabs to see which I had, they are the 044ti. You say you've replaced yours, so you would know what's in them, I guess I'm just posting to point out to other 250ti owners that they might have a different tweeter than they think they do.

  7. #7
    Unabashed Speakerholic cosmos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeffW View Post
    Looks like they changed the tweeter somewhere along the line.
    The early 250Ti had 044Ti tweeters. However, my 250Ti-LE (Limited Edition), which I believe OP owns, uses 035TiA-1 tweeters. Functionally, I believe there is no appreciable performance difference between the two. Obviously, mounting difference are. I don't recall any version using a 033Ti. I wonder is that was a typo?

    A good service facility should be able to replace foam surrounds easily on a LE14H-1. However, if OP has serious concerns about future difficulties, a pair of LE14H-3 and D8R035TiA diaphragms should put those to rest as previously suggested. The speaker is good enough to justify the expenditure.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JeffW View Post
    Looks like they changed the tweeter somewhere along the line.
    It's just a misprint... It happens...

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    To clarify, I have a set of original 250ti. The XO was replaced by a charge coupled version of the TIBQ. I also replaced the 14-1 with 14-3. I purchased new 108s. I purchased used 104s and the 044 tweeters were Aquaplus coated and new kits put in (thank you again).

    I purchased a set of "regular beater" L250s without woofers. They have the the TI XO from the 1st set (1 completed 1 slowly being done) they have used 044ti tweeters, the 104 from the 1st set, the 108s from the 1st set or another used set (didn't keep track of which was which), 1 original 14-1 from the 1st set and 1 refoamed incorrectly 14-1.

    I use 2 18TI on thier side tweeter to tweeter for a single center (see signature)

    I used 2 sets of 120ti for the rear and side surrounds

    I have a b460 usually connected and a Velodyne spl1200r to complete a 7.2 system

    A spare set of 120s, various drivers, XO for spares.

    I am not sure where the the L250 converts will go eventually. Maybe a center when not using the fireplace or something special...or rears...or another room or what

    Mark
    Think center channel for 250TIs; (2) 108s, a 104 and a 44ti, now what?

  10. #10
    Super Moderator jblnut's Avatar
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    New England Speaker in Stoneham is no longer a place I would recommend. They used to have a very knowledgeable and experienced guy - Gary - who really knew what he was doing. He re-foamed two sets of LE14H-1's for me and also fixed a difficult alignment issue with an XPL mid.

    He retired a few years ago now and his replacement couldn't even manage to do a simple voice-coil dust cap replacement on the LE14's properly after one of my kids pushed them in. He used waaay too much glue and it looks sloppy as hell.

    I think all of us in NE will be having to ship drivers back West from now on.

    Sigh...keeping old JBLs running is becoming more and more difficult.....


    jblnut


    PS - I'm with you on the "there's nothing out there I'd want to replace the 250Ti with".

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    Senior Member porschedpm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by opimax View Post
    ....I use 2 18TI on thier side tweeter to tweeter for a single center (see signature)....
    Hi, Mark. I've considered using one or two 18Ti's as centers in my own system. How does it sound? Also how do you have them wired? in series or parallel?

  12. #12
    Senior Member baldrick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by porschedpm View Post
    Hi, Mark. I've considered using one or two 18Ti's as centers in my own system. How does it sound? Also how do you have them wired? in series or parallel?
    Another option (if you have the space) is to do what I've done, use Studio Monitor 4412 as center. I've replaced the 035ti with an 044ti, but even with the 035 it works really good with the 250ti!

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    I run a mono signal into the amp run in stereo mode, each speaker receives its own signal. I think it sounds a little muffled and has to be turned up a little. I don't think I would recommend it.

    It does fit my space almost perfectly though. I hope to get to my center speaker project soon (relative term for me) now that I have resolved or it least understand most other issues I have.

    Bald, I would use a spare 120ti or even better 1 of the converted 250 if I had the space but the 18ti are almost a perfect fit. Once I figure out how to post pictures this weekend I will get some up.

    Mark
    Think center channel for 250TIs; (2) 108s, a 104 and a 44ti, now what?

  14. #14
    Senior Member baldrick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by opimax View Post
    Bald, I would use a spare 120ti or even better 1 of the converted 250 if I had the space but the 18ti are almost a perfect fit. Once I figure out how to post pictures this weekend I will get some up.
    As you probably know, the 4412 is pretty much the same as 120ti except of the 044ti, but what I like better with the 4412 is that it's much easier to fit, you can find a poor picture of my setup here

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by opimax View Post
    To clarify, I have a set of original 250ti. The XO was replaced by a charge coupled version of the TIBQ. I also replaced the 14-1 with 14-3.
    I also used some LE14H-3's as replacement for my tired LE14H-1's.

    They sound fine to me...well I can tell exactly what John Bonham is doing on the kick drum with some Zep so it must be working hey.

    The only thing to watch is that the original 14H-1 woofer bolts will not fit the 14H-3's as this driver has a thicker metal rim aroud the perimeter

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