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Thread: Altec vs. JBL vs. TAD

  1. #1
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    Altec vs. JBL vs. TAD

    "Discussions on Building or Modifying Custom Systems Using JBL and Altec Components"


    Hmmm..... New category. All right............ I'll start. Picked up some 15 cell Altec horns & 288B drivers. Thought about stuffing some new diaphragms in them and adding a pair of 2405 slots on top. I'm aware of the "cell lobing" problems that are inherent in multi-cell horns, and obviously the age of the technology we're talking about, but many "audiophiles" still consider the Altec 288 to be a decent driver in today's world.

    To my ear, large format JBL comp. drivers sound a little better.

    Crisper........cleaner........... etc... But sometimes what you hear is the opposite of what you find on a graph. Many individuals on this board seem to like 2440 JBL drivers. Personally, I don't have any experience w/ them. Just found some old graphs. Bolted up to the same Altec 329 horn, an Altec 288 appears to have a wider frequency response than a JBL 2440 and doesn't fall away as fast at some of the higher frequencies. It appears like it should be the better driver. But that's only on paper, not in the real world. Anyone have experience with these two drivers?

    For what some of this stuff has been going for on Ebay, I might sell the Altec's and buy some JBL's. Or........... TAD comp. drivers with Beryllium diaphragms. The tar-filled Altec's are vintage and cool, but massive and very, VERY heavy. With four Altec 210 VOTT cabinets underneath them, they give me a full blown Altec A2 system.

    I had four of the ten cell 1005B horns years ago. And 11 or 12 Altec 288's. So I know what they sound like. Tried aluminum and Titanium diaphragms. Was a little bummed out at the amount of power the 288's could handle.

    So keep 'em or sell 'em ??? I do like JBL's 2360, 2365, and 2366 horns. Maybe some 2445 drivers ? Or 2440's ? Or suck it up and spend some $$ on the TAD's ? In the long run, I think that's probably the best way to go. Don't have much experience with them, but from what I hear they are in a league of their own.

    Suggestions ? Comments ? You guys have a lot more experience with this stuff than I do. What do you think?

    Thanx.

  2. #2
    norealtalent
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    I've compared the 2435 drivers to 2445's, 2482's, 2420/le85 on several different horns. Have not YET tried the 2441's but thus far beryllium gets the smooooooth award.

    NICE category!!!

  3. #3
    Senior Member sa660's Avatar
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    JBL Vitavox Altec

    My brother tried the following on the Vitavox 15cells:

    1. JBL 2450
    2. Vitavox S2
    3. WE 2090 similar to 288C.
    4. JBL 2441
    5. JBL 2445.

    This is the order of preference.
    Regards,
    Richard,
    JBL 2450+JBL E145

  4. #4
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    Say what?

    Really...........

    I would have never guessed they'd finish in that order.


  5. #5
    Senior Member sa660's Avatar
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    Future wishes

    TAD 4001
    TAD 4002
    SONY SUP-T11

    GOTO Drivers,
    AEL drivers,
    Regards,
    Richard,
    JBL 2450+JBL E145

  6. #6
    Dang. Amateur speakerdave's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RacerXtreme
    Just found some old graphs. Bolted up to the same Altec 329 horn, an Altec 288 appears to have a wider frequency response than a JBL 2440 and doesn't fall away as fast at some of the higher frequencies. It appears like it should be the better driver. But that's only on paper, not in the real world. Anyone have experience with these two drivers?
    This test was done with the 288-G. Beginning with the G, the 288 series had larger more powerful magnets and extended HF response, so it is not accurate to lump all 288's together in referring to this test as if it applied to them all.

    The JBL 2440 was also advanced upon with the 2441 using an aluminum diaphragm with a different surround design, also yielding extended HF response.

    I've read the test report and I find it useful only as a source of a response curve for the 288-G and that's it.

    As far as comparing JBL 2441 and 288-G, all reports are that it is a tossup. Of course the horn and crossover would need to be the same for a direct listening comparison, and that is an impossibility.

    David

  7. #7
    Senior Member Steve Schell's Avatar
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    RacerXtreme, the onset of h.f. beaming in the individual cells occurs at about 7kHz. Many feel that it is of no consequence if you bring in a tweeter about there. I ran multicellulars full range on top for years in a living room setting and never found the beaming to be a problem. Here is a case where an anechoic polar response plot doesn't necessarily collelate with what we hear up close, though it might matter in the far field of the theatre applications these things were originally designed for.

    Your Altec 288Bs might need to be modified for use with replacement diaphragms. I believe that the Bs have the tighter gap of the original 288 and earlier Lansing drivers, and they may have a shorting ring inside that limits the gap depth as well. Bill Hanuschak at Great Plains will be the best source of knowledge on these issues, as well as the source of supply of the best replacement diaphragms.

    Are your original diaphragms shot? Collectors go ape for these drivers with original diaphragms, believing that they sound better than later ones.

    Are your horns 1505s or 1503s? Tar filled or later versions?

  8. #8
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    Hey Steve,

    yeah, the original diaphragms are shot. The horns are tar filled 1505B (15 cell).
    I've already talked with Bill H. at Great Plains. If I buy new diaphragms from him (about 100 bucks) and get them re-magnetized (20 bucks) he will modify the 288's to accept the newer diaphragms for free. Just out of curiosity, do you like the JBL 2440 / 2441's or the Altec 288's ? Obviously..... it matters what horn it's bolted to.


    c-ya


    Guy

  9. #9
    suimei
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    288-8G vs SUP-T11 on Wooden horn

    Now I compare altec driver with SONY driver.
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  10. #10
    Dang. Amateur speakerdave's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by suimei View Post
    Now I compare altec driver with SONY driver.
    Welcome to the forums!

    Are these the final two--i.e., have you already eliminated the JBL and TAD drivers, preferring these two?

    Well, what do you think? I see you have an adaptor (necessary, obviously) in line for the Altec. Of course, there must be some effect on the sound, but the comparison would still be of interest.

    There are not many of us, if any, here who have experience with the Sony driver, so this will be informative for us.

    David

  11. #11
    suimei
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    Quote Originally Posted by speakerdave View Post
    Welcome to the forums!

    David
    Hi David,

    I have tested other drivers.
    • 2440 w/ 2350
    • 2440 w/ Ti diaphragm
    • 2450 w/ 2350
    • TD-4001 w/ TH-4001
    My impression are
    • 2440 had a poor HF response.
    • 2450 had a noisy HF.
    • TD-4001 had an artificial voice.

  12. #12
    RIP 2011 Zilch's Avatar
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    Put Aquaplas-damped "-SL" diaphragms in 2450 to calm the HF. They surpress spurious resonances:

    http://audioheritage.org/vbulletin/s...ead.php?t=3450

  13. #13
    Senior Member caladois's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by suimei View Post
    Hi David,

    I have tested other drivers.
    • 2440 w/ 2350
    • 2440 w/ Ti diaphragm
    • 2450 w/ 2350
    • TD-4001 w/ TH-4001
    My impression are
    • 2440 had a poor HF response.
    • 2450 had a noisy HF.
    • TD-4001 had an artificial voice.
    Really interesting observation. 2350 was quiet a hard sounding to my hear. I think the 2441 was the most suitable for this application.
    TH4001 need somme equal to be honest. Correctly filtered, they worked fine.

    What do you think of the SONY SUP-T11 ? I own a pair, but I am looking for the best horn to associate ?
    Regards Stephane

  14. #14
    Dang. Amateur speakerdave's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zilch View Post
    Put Aquaplas-damped "-SL" diaphragms in 2450 to calm the HF. They surpress spurious resonances . . . .
    Ditto this, though I am using them as treble low passed at 10K. Quite satisfactory.

    Basically, I have not heard a convincing demonstration of the krinkled surround and rattling membrane for high frequency extension.

    David

  15. #15
    Senior Member Ian Mackenzie's Avatar
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    The Tad 4003 is a different sound again. I understand the earlier Tad's were a lot less satisfying.

    Ian

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