OHM 3XO Factory Rebuild

I am new to Audiogon and enjoy all the various posts and have learned a lot in the short time here, so I figured it was my turn to chime in

I’m a lover of music, don’t consider myself an audiophile, but I do want the best out my system for the amount I’ve invested. ( and will keep investing) 

I was introduced to the OHM line of speakers from the gentleman I purchased my Jolida tube amp from this past winter. Long story short I ended up purchasing a pair  of OHM 3XO’s, vintage early 1990’s and thought they were wonderful.

Over several months I started switching between them and my 1978 vintage Cornwalls and noticed that the midrange on the OHMs seemed shadowed and not fully defined, though the treble and base were just fine

I contacted OHM and they stated they would rebuild each driver to new specs at what I considered an affordable price. So I removed them, packaged them up and sent them to NY.  Within 2 weeks I was notified that they drivers needed new surrounds and that they would also replace the capacitors and recommended a tweeter upgrade to their latest version found in their 3000 and 5000 series today

I agreed and in 2 weeks I received my drivers back, and impeccably packaged. For those that may know the OHM drivers, they sit on top of the speaker cabinet via a metal ring. Well the factory uses these rings as a support within the box so the driver is actually suspended in air. They actually cut a piece of plywood to match the diameter of the driver, which the ring is then attached to, and then that piece of plywood sits on another support with the box ( each driver has it’s own box) so there is no force put upon the outside of the driver housing during shipment, 

Each separate box was then placed inside a master box with corner protectors on all 4 corners, top and bottom, so the individual boxes could not move. I was thoroughly impressed.

The sound ?  Magnificent !

The midrange is spot on, even rivals the Cornwalls or better. The highs…well I’m hearing instruments ( finger cymbals, snare drum brushes and the like) in recordings I never knew were there. The bass is strong but  not as deep as the originals, which is OK…I use a sub to slightly augment ( which I have to also use with my Cornwalls)

Are they perfect ? No. Are my Cornwalls ? No. Are there better ? Of course. But for my listening and personal enjoyment, I am more than satisfied.

I will say, the staff at OHMs was fantastic. They are old school, treat every customer like they were their first, listen to their needs and offer choices across the board. Very refreshing to see in these times we live in. 


@johndel1960 Glad that you are enjoying your rebuilt 3XO's! They are fun speakers to listen to. I owned a pair back around 2007 or so, refinished the cabinets and then had the 3000 driver upgrade. I kept the original drivers and redid the foam surrounds on them to have as spares, but it also gave me some time to do some comparisons with the new 3000 drivers too. 

I thought the 3000 update was an improvement overall, and liked them a bit more than the original drivers. Yet there seemed to me to be something very good with the original driver that I enjoyed, once the surrounds were replaced and all working well, it just seemed that they were more lighter and quicker on their feet so to speak. It took me awhile to really get a handle on the "sound" of them, especially after a somewhat seemingly long, slow break in of the new 3000 drivers. 

I really like Ohms, and enjoy omni-directional types of speakers more than the typical monkey coffins that hurl music right at you. Omni types just seem more natural to my ears for the long haul. I no longer have Ohms, enjoying Duevel omni's for the last 4-5 years now, would certainly have another pair again though if the situation came about. 

Have fun, enjoy your music, that is what it is all about. Always nice to read about Ohms and omni's though, no matter the brand. 

@asvjerry Always good to see you still lurking around, hope all is well with you!

@frazeur1 *G* Somebody's gotta keep the dust bunnies enslaved around here...

Everything improves after break-in, even my diy Walsh....can't 'pre-break' the subject drivers, since they get Frankenstiened back to 'new'. *L*

Been busy, honeydo list still expanding like the universe....

Thanks for the shout, J

I had the Ohm E’s a hundred years ago and the sound definitely changed (got better) for a few hundred hours before they totally settled in.

I am a big fan of OHM’s. In fact I just refurbed a set of Walsh 5 LE’s using the latest 5.5000 drivers.


In reading through your post. A couple of thoughts. It sounds like you still have the same woofers as they just replaced the surrounds. With the same drivers you should get the “Same” amount of bass. However, if they changed the port tuning, you could get more or less bass, but with deeper extension now. It would depend on the port tuning. Otherwise, as the surround loosens up a bit your bass should improve a tad.


Second thought. If you are using the Jolida tube amp, it wouldn’t be my first thought with OHM’s. More than just about any speaker I’ve owned (and that is a lot of speakers). The OHM’s need power. So, I would give them a little gas for a while with a big old solid state amp (or Class D will be fine).


I do feel that the biggest difference between the original drivers in the Walsh 5LE’s and the new 5.5000’s is the midrange is much, much better. I also prefer the soft dome tweeter in the current speakers. I’ve had a few generations of OHM’s over the years. I’m not a fan of metal tweeters in general.  If the midrange is more prominent after their tuning, then you might feel like you hear less bass also.


You could also just push them back 6 inches towards the wall. OHM’s really change their bass presentation based on location to the wall. I have some older Walsh 1’s also. It cracks me up how much bass they can generate when 6-8 inches off the rear wall and with a big old Adcom 5800 pushing them around.


If you don’t have a solid state.  Run down to guitar center and pick up a crown amp and give it a whirl.  They aren’t perfect, but they have a crap ton of power cheap and a liberal return policy.