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Renovate my AR-98LSI speakers???


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Hi all. I have a pair of AR-98LSI about 20 years old. Both 8" mid/low woofers have torn surrounds. One of the 12" woofers is also torn. At that age I'm sure the other 12" will go soon with the amounts of bass I put through them.

My Mom used them for years at low volumes - very little bass. Now I have them and they sound pretty bad.

So do I spend the $400 to replace all four woofers via AB Tech? Do I chance having them re-foamed? Do these sound good normally? They were about $1200 20 years ago.

Also, I have substantial hearing loss above 4kHz so they sound muddy to me. My Infinty's sound OK though but I suspect that is because they exaggerate the highs. Is there a way to verify that the Hi & Mid/Hi drivers are functioning properly?

If it goes well, I may renovate my AR 28s pair as well! Any and all advice appreciated!


Tom H.

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>So do I spend the $400 to replace all four woofers via AB Tech? <

My preference would be to have them professionally re-surrounded. That should not cost more than $120 plus shipping provided the drivers are otherwise in good condition.

I have just made the mistake of buying new when refoaming old would have done nicely, perhaps better. That's a lot of money to throw away.

As to their sounding "muddy" I can only say that with non-functional surrounds I'm surprised you don't describe them as sounding worse than that! Judging their sound in this condition would be a little like describing the performance of a V8 engine with 5 spark-plugs disconnected.

I don't know of a way to test your upper-range drivers; others might.


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The easiest way to test the the mids and highs is to play some music with a wide range of frequency content at rather low volume, and have someone listen with an ear inches from the driver. You should get someone with better hearing.

Now comes the down side, if there is a problem with the dual hi and hi-mid drivers used in the 9LS, 98LS and 70LS, they are difficult to impossible to repair, and next to impossible to find.

By comparison, the AR28 is almost a trivial project.

Good luck with your projects.


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