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Home Theater, 50% Style
By Dan Schmalle From VALVE Issue 6, July 1994


  Well, you guys who missed the last meeting are really gonna kick yourselves. You missed Rick and Tina cutting a rug at our vintage disco. The meeting was obviously quite informal. I had managed to scrounge the proper parts to repair one damaged crossover in time for the meeting so we got to hear the A7's in stereo. Attendance was light so we pushed back the chairs and cranked 'em up and danced.

Now I don't like horn speakers as a rule, but these A7's aren't bad. With the Stereo 70 the tweets seemed a bit harsh and throaty. I later adjusted the crossover for 6dB attenuation and they really smoothed out. The real surprise was how nice the triode amp I've been putting together sounded with them. I am now willing to concede that triodes and horns can sound very good. Thanks to Mike for inspiring me to try 'em.

I will go so far as to say that I A/B'd an A7 with triode amp against a Magnepan with Mark Ill and except for better bass from the Magnepan (no kidding!) they were very close. At this point I must offer a few corrections to my description of the A7's we auditioned. To begin with they are the 500Hz crossover model with 500Hz horn.

Also, the woofers are model 412's' reputed to sound better than those mentioned in last month's article. I have also learned from Eric that both woofers and one compression driver were totally fried when he found them so they have been rebuilt. When I opened the crossovers I found 2mfd dipped caps in the smoothing network that had exploded, and a fried coil. Obviously the previous owners hooked them up to a 6 million watt amp and screamed through them for a while.

Eric has been kind enough to let me use the A7's for an extended time to fine tune my triode amps. Considering that they are supposed to be good only 40 Hz to 10 kHz (I have not verified this), I would conjecture that a lot of 30 Hz to 20 kHz speakers around these days aren't really that wide range. Of course I'm in my advanced 30's so I can't hear anything above 15 kHz anyway.






























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