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Altec Flamenco redux

2360 Views 6 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  aceinc
I have an opportunity to pick up a pair of Altec Lansing Iconic Flamenco speakers. A 15" woofer, and an 18" horn. The fellow that has them will take another pair of speakers that I don't use for them. I think its an OK deal.

The Altec cabinets are in rough shape. They are constructed out of MDF with oak veneer. The tops are very bad, and according to the current owner (a cabinet maker in his youth) the base of one of the cabinets was water damaged and is starting to disintegrate.

I have listened to them (not critically) and they seem to sound pretty decent. All drivers work, etc.

So the questions begin.

1) Should I try to repair the cabinets, or rebuild?

2) If I rebuild, should I a) recreate the exact same cabinet? b) Use analysis software on the woofers and design a new cabinet?

3) Irrespective of 2 should I a) redesign the crossover? b) recap the existing crossover? c) leave it alone (clean it up)?

The answers to the questions depend on what I intend to do with them. I tend to use speakers and then resell them. For resale the, is the antique/original market hotter than the really nice looking great sounding market?

You get the idea.

Interested in all opinions.


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If you are planning on reselling them I would do as little as possible to them to bring them up to spec cosmetically, and functionally. Basically I would make them look nice and sound good without harming the original value.
If you want to resell, rebuild duplicates of the original cabinets and definitely re-cap the original crossovers with poly if they used electrolytic caps.

Personally I would opt for a redesigned build of the cabinets and crossovers but that would take a lot of design and modeling work that you need equipment for. Do you have a woofer tester or a calibrated mic?
Fusseli, I have a woofer tester that I have never used. I have used modeling software to design subwoofer cabinets based on published specs. I don't have much trepidation in doing the cabinet design, testing and building a crossover from scratch is something I would need help with.

I have played with REW, to flatten my sub, in room with Feedback destroyer pro. I tried to build a simple crossover using REW and I didn't do a good job of it. Not because the tool is bad, but because I didn't know what I was doing.

When I get the cabinets I will assess what I have, and post some pictures.

In my opinion, you should

1. Rebuild the cabinets.

2. a. Use the original design, basically. I suppose there my be some room for improvement in terms of construction techniques.

3. b. Recap the existing crossover.

I know nothing about the antique market, but I think the above route would be the best compromise.
I did get the cabinets. played them a bit in a small room with an Adcom GFA-555 driving them, and they sounded pretty good. One cabinet had sat in water and the base was disintegrating, so I replaced it with MDF. Life got in the way for a number of months and will still be in the way for a few more months, but after that I will have 25' x 45' x 9' workshop/garage to play in (yay)

So I will pickup where I left off.

I am still up in the air as to how to proceed. I think what I will want to do is end up with a pair of speakers to rock the garage. Some options include;

A) Sell components individually (they all look pristine.

B) Finish rebuilding and refinishing the existing cabinets.
1) Sell them refinished.
2) Keep them for Garage duty (too big for house).

C) Analyze/Design/Build best cabinets I can come up with for Garage use.

In any of the sales scenarios, I use the money would buy/build something to work in the garage.

What are your thoughts?
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