Anyone use really old speakers?

Engine Swap

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I have a 1950s Utah in my 1965 DR. Sounds fantastic!

The “techs” approve

50427577407_b761e5b6d1_k.jpg
 

stormsedge

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I'm about to put some ~50yo stereo speakers back in service, so I am hoping they are as good as I remember them.
 

rjtwangs

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I have a matched pair of original Jensen P10Q's that came out of a bandmates 1961 Super with the original cones. One is in my Clark Webster/Harvard and the other is in my 1962 6g2. Both amps sound GLORIOUS!!!! Yes, the right old speakers can be fantastic!!
61_P10Q(2)-_BasketsTop-1.jpg
61_P10Q(2)-_BasketsSide.jpg
61_P10Q(2)-_Cones.jpg



RJ
 
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KokoTele

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Speakers are like shoes. They're too stiff and uncomfortable when they're new, and need to be broken in for a while before they start to be really good.

As long as the voice coil doesn't get damaged (like by playing it too hard for too long and getting it overheated) and the cone doesn't get damaged (like by storing in a damp basement for too long), a speaker is just going to sound better and better over time. When it's really old, you start to lose something in the highs, but most of us are old enough that we can't hear well in that range anyway.
 

Engine Swap

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So that speaker is 70 years old? Has the cone been replaced or any work been done on it?

Nope, it’s all original. It was in an extension cabinet for a movie projector that looked like this. I’m guessing it wasn’t used much.

hvtzfpwtldsjvhb1ngkd.jpg


The original speaker cone in the Fender became brittle and torn around the surround back in the late 80s
 

arlum

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It depends on if they're original and well cared for or if they've been abused or, in some cases, reconed. Sometimes the original cone material can't be replaced and the cone material was an integral part of what made the speaker so special to begin with. I'm not a fan of new speakers at all. If I buy them new I put as many hours on them as I can. There a dozens of speakers in cabs and combos currently in my home and it seems that every year of age, as long as they're played and not in storage, add to the quality of tone they produce. Examples. I've got Celestion Alnico Blues that are 2 years, 10 years and 20 years old. The older they get the better they sound. I also love and use Eminence Ragin' Cajun 10" speakers and my oldest definitely sound the best. Sometimes I think new speakers are like new vocal students. They've got to be pretty good just to get started but, over time, the develop into something all their own. The quality of the vocal / tone just grows and grows.
 

memorex

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I have a pair of RTR HPR-12M's I bought in 1977, like these:

RTR HPR-12M.jpg


They're in the living room, and they still work great. They make the TV sound like you're in a theater.

LivingRoom.jpg
 

schmee

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They can be fine. I wouldn't push too hard though. They can also fail readily. Toss of the dice.

I often get stuff with old Jensen's in it. 50's-60's. Jensen alnicos are about 50% bad out of old devices. I test before selling. Interestingly, most often there is a voice coil rub/cone cry in the low A to low C range. The 'spider' on them is very stiff not allowing the cone to move in and out properly. Some even come unglued from the frame if pushed hard.
 

Lawdawg

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I'm no expert on this, but I've got a pair of Altec 417's in my Twin Reverb that are close to 50 years old and I think they sound great!
 

saltyseadog

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Not guitar amp speakers but I still use my Bang and Olufsen S35's bought in 1977 and my Jamo J120 Studio Monitors bought in 198? while I lived in Denmark. A few years back I added a self built passive sub woofer and have my TV and music player running through them. The sound on the TV is amazingly full.
 




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