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Hi-Fi Stereo - Loudspeakers
Vintage versus modern speakers
Question:©What is the difference between vintage speakers that were used with tube amplifers and modern speakers?
Answer: Vintage HiFi and high Efficiency Speakers from the 50's and 60's are ideal for vaccum tube amplifiers and receivers, as designed when this was the only equipment avaialable. Basically speakers for vaccum tube equipment are quite different from modern equipment. The difference is: In the days of old, output power from amplifiers was precious and in low wattage ranges. Speaker desings were aimed to use this precious energy wisely with high efficiency designs (resolution and detail in sound!), and in the context of using avaialble materials at the time. These materials often were based on natural resources compared to synthetically engineered materials of today. Thus vintage speakers sound quite different than modern ones: warmer and more natural, but at times can be more mid rangy, occasioanlly boom in bass, or lack it. Truely vintage speakers are also not recommended to be used with modern equipment, unless the equipment used with them provides modest
output power. Ideally speakers would be able to handle double the amount of rated RMS power of the amplifier that drives them. So: as vintage speakers are designed for low power ranges, vintage speakers are easily overdriven and with too much power and easily destroyed.
Vintage speakers often have a much flatter mid range response and often sound warmer. Vintage speakers are often great for music that uses acoustic instruments, and often they provide amazing detail. More modern speakers in comparisson often provide the experiences of "power" that "blows the listener away", "blows your ears off", or makes windows and doors rattle. These speakers often require a minimum power amount to start unfolding their gifts (Not good to be used with most tube amplifiers!), and also quite often lack the very fine detail within their massive mountains of power. Different Times - Different Designs - Differend philosophy in sound and music listening. Definitely worth exploring - Get a pair of Vintage High Efficiency Speakers!
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