They SUCK! it's a no brainer...
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having lived with lots(well over 20) pairs of high end speakers over 30 years, listening to hundreds for extended periods, and currently living with no sloutch gradients, ar's and castles.....there are times when i am certain that the original large and small advents where just about perfect. in fact, a stacked (2) pair of large advents still compete with pretty much ANYTHING. chapmans,hales,allisons and sotas were up there, but those adventsjust did everything right, and you didn't have worry about what they were hooked up to. friends who still own and swear by them, think that no reasonable person could make a case for needing more (ever)
I had a double advent stack in my early twenties. I still miss them. Talk about bang for the buck. I was assembling Dynaco kits to power them. My neighbors all knew I had them. They did have a few faults but at that price (about $130 bucks/pair) they were hard to beat. Doubling up the pair just magnified their strengths. I still have one pair of them in the closet, can't bring myself to get rid of em.
They were my first 'real' speaker.
i have a pair, hooked up to a Denon PMA-700AE integrated amp,
(a Rotel RB-1070 will come this summer)
they have to be set up good, but when you did that, you'll have a speaker that easily beats a modern $1000 speaker,
mine for example, beat my dad's b&w dm604 s3's, on voices, if you happen to find a pair somewhere (or buy one on ebay or at a garage sale or so) pick them up, set them up and listen to them,
the sweetest voices I ever heard...
Back in the day I played 4 stacked large walnut Advents powered by an SAE amp and pre-amp, Thorens TD125 with Shure SMEIII tonearm and Stanton 681EEE cartridge.
I had 2 problems:
1. Blew many woofer surrounds (very weak) and a few teweeters
2. Couldn't isolate the turntable well enough and bass would actually pop stylus out of groove and vibration caused rumble. Maybe I should have tried some quarters 8<(.
But when everything was working it kicked some serious butt!
The spec for the 'New Large' Advent loudspeaker was 89dB/W/m. I drove mine fine for years ('79-'89) with a modded Advent 300 receiver. I replaced the electrolytic crossover caps with much better poly caps. Because they were inexpensive speakers, they were too often paired with cheap gear of the '70s and the awful sound was blamed on the speakers. I had auditioned mine from time to time with top-notch electronics of the '80s and they only sounded better. I tried double advents with a friend, but the Sansui 717 amp always popped its breaker after 5min.
The recent stereophile review was of the 'smaller 'old' advent loudspeaker', which was a dumbed-down version of the 'large' model. The side-by-side difference was not subtle, with a far more open and less-congested midrange on the 'large', along with obviously deeper more defined bass from a 2" bigger woofer.
Both speakers were redesigned in '79 (?) and renamed the 'new' (small/large) advent loudspeaker. A big part of the change was more output from a redesigned tweeter to take advantage of the less-hashy HF reproduction offered by newer transistor electronics of the later '70s (it's all relative!) The reviewer's concern of the missing high frequencies would have been much less-so with the 'new'.
I sold my Advents for VERY similar sounding Boston A200s, but have been listening to Thiel 2.3&4 since 2002. Sure, the Thiels are a far better speaker esp wrt soundstaging, but there's a lot to be said about Advent's 12" woofers and a simple crossover.
If I was forced to own a '70s speaker, I'd take my 'New Large' Advents back in a second: they could play loud, decent dispersion, a warmish engaging sound with wonderfully natural midrange for a large 2-way, and conveyed more detail and dynamics than you'd expect (as the stereophile reviewer reported).
As much as I enjoyed them, technology does march forward: I'm no Advent guru, just recalling the thousands of hours they provided my music.
Had a paif Advent Heritage from about 1991. Just put them away when I got the Spendor S8s. The Advents's had very mushy bass and compared to the Spendors, although I think they went lower. Also, switcing back to them after listening to a more modern speaker you could hear the mismatch between the tweeter and mids.
In their day though they were awsome for the money. I was happy with them for a long time and my wife still rues the day I stopped in a hi-fi store on a whim and promptly decided to replace the whole kit.
AH the vintage large Advent speakers!! For many years 1971-1997 they were my main speakers. I had 4 stacked (tweeter to tweeter) for the fronts and singles for my rear channels. I drove the fronts with a Marantz 1200 Int amp 125 wpc. At the end I drove them with an Adcom tuner preamp and the 555 power amp. Great sound. It took the Apogee Calipers and finally the Divas for me to upgrade.
1. At $200 per pair, they were considered cheap, so they were included in basically low fi systems. In fact with high end electronics with good power 100+ wpc, they were exceptional for the time and can easily compete with some of todays speakers costing up to $1000.
2. When stacked, they become a different beast altogether!! The sound becomes astonishing considering the system costs $400. I still have the 4 in mint condition in storage. One day I may set them up for comparision with my Divas. It'll be interesting, how they compare. IMHO they were probably best $400 new speakers ever. Mr. Kloss sure hit it right with these.
I can't claim to be an audio expert but I appreciate good sound. When I "upgraded" to my present system about 20 years ago I was talked into some DQ-20's instead of the Larger Advents that I was going to get at the time.
Two years ago I picked up some Larger Advents very reasonably priced and hooked them to the Monster Cable in place of the DQ-20's and in the exact sonic environment.
At first I saw no discernable difference but then I began to notice things that I had NOT been hearing on the Dahlquists. The more I listened across our eclectic collection that ranges from the hillbilly yodels of A. Tippin to Sinatra and Muldaur, from George Winston and the incredible diction of Streep to Loreena MacKennitt and John Anderson, from The Who and much Glimmer Twinz to Led Zep's incredible 5 [and even a few old Yardbirds] to Wagner as interpreted by Furtwangler, Flagstad and others more modern, to Josh Bell and Cash and Waylon and Willie and Big & Rich...
Anyway, you get the picture, our main speakers get played at a lot of different volumes and with a lot of different material. And across this diverse range I keep "discovering" things that weren't there with the DQ-20's. And no, my ears are not getting better with age ;^)
So cutting to the chase, I see that you keep up with the technical stuff and I wondered if you would explain why the Advent Heritage isn't as desirable as the old Larger [and Smaller] Advents. I am going to put my pair of DQ-20's on eBay and set up the dual Advent system so I need to know which years/models of the various large Advents would be best for this.
Thanks much in advance for any advice anyone can offer here; I am using a Sumo Polaris amp and a Sumo Athena pre-amp.
Most likely that Henry Kloss wasn't into the design at that time. The Large Advent was and still is the cream of the crop. When you get your second pair stack them with the tweeters close together (tweeter on top of the bottom speaker-tweeter on the bottom of the top one) You'll then hear things that you did'nt with just a single pair. The better the electronics the better these will sound!! I replaced my 1971s with 1978s (better quality assemblies)
Does anyone else remember the short period during which Advent offered the "powered Advent Large Speaker?" I never heard them nor talked to anyone who had heard them, but I enjoyed my large advents. I played them with, alternately a Marantz 1060 and then an Advent 300. But the best sound I ever got out of them were when I used the 300 as a preamp and hooked up a monster mono guitar amp, just to see what they would do. Sounded great with the increased power. They like power.
The story I recall was that Henry Kloss became interested in video and was developing one of the first home-based front projection systems. He needed development money so drew on his design experience from AR and KLH and introduced the Large Advent. Due to the success of his Advent speakers, he is remembered for those to a much greater extent than his Kloss video system.
I bought a new pair of Large Advents in 1970 and by '73 had stacked Advents. My HK Citation 12 amp was not powerful and didn't like the impedance load so that was cured by building a Dyna 400 kit. I kept that system until about '80 and it was one of the best I've owned.