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AR90 tweeter response vs AR94sx


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Should there be a significant performance different between AR90 and AR94sx tweeter?

I have AR90 and AR94sx speakers. While I like the AR90 because of the overall sound I do notice that my AR94sx's are thnner but definitely have a better high frequencies dispersion than the AR90's. My reference music for comparison is Decca recording Tchaikovsky - Zubin Metha - track 2 (Valse) (410551-2). I am refering to the sound of the triangle in track especially at the end. With the AR94sx's the triangle is easily heard and spreads all over the room. However, when I play the same piece through the AR90's I have to concentrate to hear the triagle and I notice the sound spread is limited.

Can anyone suggest what the issue might be. I have tried to check the phasing out using the crossover diagram available on the AR page and I have also listened to each speaker separately as I have a "new" tweeter in one and the original tweeter in the other, but there is no significant difference to me.

I am currently using a small but clean amplifier at low volumes.


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I do own a pair of AR-90s and in fact, I'm the original owner. I can't comment on the other speakers you mentioned as I've never heard them played let alone beside the 90's that I own.

I do know from experience that the 90's do not "light up" at low volumn and will sound a bit flat. With 5 elements per channel, two of them being 10 inch woofers, it takes a fair sized amp to drive them and get them to sound decent.

I went to the trouble of locating the crossover schematics and layout prints and rewired them to be biamped (yes, I installed a new wiring block), thus separating the bass from the rest of the drivers. This made profound improvement in the sound quality as neither amp is struggling to drive 5 elements per channel.

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Guest Nigel

>I am currently using a small but clean amplifier at low



This is an issue with classic AR speakers, they like power - lots of it, and amplifiers with very high damping factors that are stable driving inductive loads with very low impedances.

In my experience, the biggest audible difference between a high powered amp and a low powered amp is heard a low listening volumes. That is right, the higher powered amp is more important a quiet levels than loud levels.

Dr Bose did some very interesting research many years ago on duplicating the sound of a pin dropping, and discovered that it took an incredibly powerful wide band amplifier to drive speakers in such a manner as to come close. A triangle is much like a pin drop.

By "clean" are you referring to SNR or something else? SNR, THD, etc are not very important once they are past (below or above depending) a certain level.

Borrow an Adcom 555 (200W in 8ohms with very high damping, and capable of driving very low impedances) or similar, and listen carefully - especially at very low levels.


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