Speaker Damage?

Hello everyone
I recently shipped my brother my old Paradigm Studio 100's via UPS and apparently they dragged them all the way to Kentucky. The cabinets were pretty dinged up but they still worked. The problem is they sound like sh**. What could of happened internaly? I will be visiting him in a couple of weeks and was wondering what I could do visualy or with a multi-meter to check them out. I am pretty handy with a soldering iron also. Thanks in advance for any suggestions.

Hi Rick,

Sorry to hear about the damage.

Do both speakers sound like sh** in the same way? If you believe they sound this way because of the shipping damage they would both have to have the exact same type of damage to be equally degraded. You may want to swap left and right speakers to check.


You never said if you heard them, you said you shipped them and was going to visit, so I assume you have not heard them, if that is true...can it be his gear, room, placement, wires, or even his opinion that they sound bad?
If you insured them they'll only reimburse you for the amount of cost of speakers (if used), not for replacement price. This is the nice little game they play calling it "insurance" but not giving you full coverage to replace items. It's a "grey area" in insurance, so they tell you when you go to seek full replacement, they don't have to reimburse you the full amount, and they won't give you $ easily if you can't produce reciepts, etc. Makes shipping lots of fun. Never pay a dime for insurance over the amount you can prove you paid.
You could have damage making the speakers unusable. You may not be able to get into the cabinet without destroying it. If there's damage to crossover, wires inside, etc. you won't be able to access it all (or at least effortlessly) from the hole for the driver, if you can even take the driver out.
There may be damage to the inside of the cabinet where the crossover assembly was attatched. If something is loose, it may be the crossover assembly, or part of the speaker itself. On one pair of speakers I had shipped, they dropped it so hard the crossover broke off and was rattling around and had hit the speaker assembly.
I'll never ship speakers again. Both times when given to UPS or Fed Ex they've been drastically mishandled. Small comfort, but you're wiser now.
The internal damage caused by dropping the speakers generally distorts the baskets of the woofers and midranges. The heavy magnets on the back of the drivers causes the basket to bend (or break in the case of die cast baskets) and thus ruin the driver. You may need to replace all of the woofers to restore the sound.
Before you take all the of bass/midrange drivers out of the cabinet, try pushing in gently on the cones. If they make a scratching sound or if they do not move at all then they are scrap metal. If all seem to pass the push test, then try taking them out and hooking them up to an amp and playing music through them. If all of the drivers sound good, then you should suspect the crossover. The big heavy coils of wire that are usually part of the low-pass filters may have broken loose from the crossover network and are no longer in the circuit. They can generally be re-glued to the board and then re-soldered to restore the sound.