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Thread: Old JBL find!!!

  1. #1
    Senior Member JBLROCKS's Avatar
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    Old JBL find!!!

    I just got a museum of OLD JBL speakers!! They are tearing an old theater down here and I went in and retrieved ALL of the sound system minus the amps etc.

    This was a theater on a Army base that was built in 1940 with all JBL. Everything is 1940's vintage and in EXCELLENT CONDITION!!!!

    Here is what I got:

    (4) JBL D130 15" full range speakers - 16 ohm
    (2) # 154-4 15" woofers 32 ohms
    (2) coaxial 15" with big horns (unsure of model at this time.)
    (1) 527-800 horn with driver 275

    I would imagine that this stuff may be worth a pretty penny, as it has been untouched for 65 years!! and never abused, overdriven etc!

    I am curious to learn more about these items and any input is appreciated.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Senior Member pelly3s's Avatar
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    i never find good stuff. I always miss out.

  3. #3
    Webmaster Don McRitchie's Avatar
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    Welcome to our forum JBLROCKS!

    That is an incredible find. The gear would appear to date from the early 50's. The 275 and 150-4 date from 1953. The latter is probably the most valuable of the lot, particularly if they are in excellent condition. Can you post pictures of any of this gear? In particular, I am interested in seeing the coaxes. JBL never made a 15" coax until the 80's so I'm curious just what you have.
    Regards

    Don McRitchie

  4. #4
    Senior Member JBLROCKS's Avatar
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    The coaxes are Altec # 603-B... Not true coax simply a horn placed over the center dome to disperse high frequencies. One is perfect and the other has a ripped cone. Is this worth re-coning?

    No pictures as of yet.

  5. #5
    Administrator Mr. Widget's Avatar
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    For the Altec contact Bill Hanuschak at Great Plains Audio.

    http://www.greatplainsaudio.com/


    Great find and welcome to the Heritage Forum for the JBL Inflicted! We are all a bit envious!!!

    Widget

  6. #6
    Senior Member JBLROCKS's Avatar
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    Thanks!!

  7. #7
    Senior Member JBLROCKS's Avatar
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    Altec 603B

    Here are some pictures of the Altec 603B's

    Unfortunatly they are in the worst shape...These were the main front speakers for the auditorium and right next to swamp-cooler outlets. (This theater had a swamp cooler system the size of a small house!)

    Cabinets are pretty much shot and drivers not real good, have weird "Bakelite" spiders sort of disentegrating

    So in esscence not the perfect environment for a speaker.
    Attached Images Attached Images    

  8. #8
    Senior Member JBLROCKS's Avatar
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    150-4

    Some pictures of the 150-4's.

    excellent condition!
    Attached Images Attached Images   

  9. #9
    Senior Member JBLROCKS's Avatar
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    275 Horn & Driver

    Pictures
    Attached Images Attached Images    

  10. #10
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    If the 150-4 speakers are for sale, I'd like to know the price.
    Robin

  11. #11
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    The Price???

    Well If it is what they ask for them on ebay you do not want to know.

  12. #12
    Senior Member JBLROCKS's Avatar
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    Update...

    At this time the only thing I am interested in selling are the pair of Altec 603-B's.
    They do need some work so if anyone knows of a collector that can repair them this would be best.

    Thanks

  13. #13
    Senior Member hector.murray's Avatar
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    parts

    These 2 sellers on ebay may have parts for you.

    http://search.ebay.com/_W0QQfgtpZ1QQ...3aMEFSQ3aMESOI

    http://search.ebay.com/_W0QQfgtpZ1QQ...3aMEFSQ3aMESOI

    these 2 sellers on ebay have recently shown some voice coils and cones for these drivers. I don't see anything listed currently, but they both seem to have significant stock of older altec and jbl parts, not all of which is showing currently.
    I DO NOT KNOW HOW REPUTABLE THEY ARE but they may have stock for you or anyone who is interested in these.
    Regards
    Hector

  14. #14
    Senior Member Steve Schell's Avatar
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    A little history...

    I've always been fascinated by the Altec Lansing 603 / 603B Diacone speakers. An article by John Hilliard explaining the Diacone (high frequency diaphragm combined with low frequency cone) was published in Audio Engineering magazine in 1947.

    There were a number of "full range" speakers introduced in the mid to late 1940s which used aluminum center domes to extend high frequency response, and I sense the hand of Jim Lansing in all of them. First came the 603 in late 1945, with its multicellular horn mounted over the dome to spread the highs out a bit. The ever vigilant copycat Bob Stephens introduced his aluminum dome designs with the "Co-spiral" diffusor shortly after. Then Altec introduced the inexpensive 400 8" and 600 12" full ranges. Jim Lansing left Altec and began his new company about then and produced the D-101 15" general purpose speaker, and the slim profile D-130 15", D-131 12" and D-208 8" models shortly after.

    Hal Cox owns a small, rusty old 1930s field coil radio speaker that very unusually has an aluminum center dome. It was given to him by longtime JBL president William Thomas, along with several other items that reportedly had belonged to Jim Lansing and had been left in his work area in the Fletcher Drive factory. It was thought by Thomas that perhaps this speaker had been Lansing's inspiration for the aluminum dome designs.

    The 603 was built using the same cone and phenolic spider as the 515 woofer and 604 Duplex, which of course means that countless 603s have been gutted over the years to repair more valuable drivers with original parts. This is a shame, as the 603 is a nice speaker. It was just the ticket for many people in the postwar era to achieve nice sound in a simple system. Altec sold several thousand of them.

    I own 603 serial #15, which is still on its original baffle board complete with Jim Lansing's initials in pencil. 603 serial #1 sold on ebay a couple of years ago, and I still regret not bidding on it. The 603B was introduced in 1947; I don't know what differences there are. They were built until the early 1950s, when the aluminum dome Altecs were replaced by Alex Badmaieff's new Biflex driver designs.

  15. #15
    Senior Member paragon's Avatar
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    Pic

    Picture please, Steve

    Eckhard

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