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Old May 26th 21, 01:37 PM posted to
Peter Wieck[_2_]
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Posts: 137
Default AR3a vs. JBL-100

> I love them both and use both ever day with McIntosh amp. The L100's with a MC2300, and the AR3's with a MC2105. The AR3's have been completely restored, the L100's are stock. Both sound great.

Nice to see a response after nearly 22 years. But, with that in mind, I just finished restoring a pair of 3as last Sunday. Of the six caps, two tested at 250% of value (marked 10% tolerance), one was open, and two were fine. Fine or not, they were replaced. Some things to note:

There were three cap manufacturers represented: Royal, Sprague and Chicago Cap. Every cap had an AR part number on it - and both the Sprague and Royal caps shared the same number for the 150 uF cap. And Sprague, Royal and Chicago shared the correct numbers for the others. So, over the years, AR clearly used multiple suppliers. The two speakers were very close in serial number - but the internal configurations were quite different. One had the back-wired tweeter, the other had the front-wired tweeter. One used clear (white) elephant-snot glue, the other black. One had solid wood braces internally, the other particle-board. But they both sounded fine after the work.

I did not replace the pots.

These (and why I deliberately linked to eBay - hurry up, guys and gals before I jump on a spare) are the best cleaning tools for electronic purposes that I know. There are various inserts from 'kiss a soap bubble' to 'peel chrome from a trailer-hitch'. The marl is non-conductive, and it can fit into tight spaces. I used mine to clean the pots after disassembly and they work just fine.

As to the JBL100 - to me, it is an indifferent-sounding speaker as compared to the AR, an excellent example of the California Sound and very well-made (for a mass-production speaker). But I do not find it as compelling as the AR - the very nearly perfect example of the Boston Sound.

Superficial definitions:
California Sound: Emphasis on the highs and the lows - with specific leaning towards the lows (e.g. Cerwin-Vega). with the mid-range being somewhat neglected. Somewhat more brighter than not.
Boston Sound: Almost painfully flat across the entire range. So relatively merciless.

Peter Wieck
Melrose Park, PA