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Old 14th Jul 2019, 7:28 pm   #1
RojDW48
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Default Mystery labyrinth(?) loudspeakers

Curious angled design, large rear port. I have a hazy recollection of a design like this in a hi-fi journal in the 60s. I think they are home made (by a very talented woodworker) and they sound very nice. Any info would be very welcome.
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Old 14th Jul 2019, 8:34 pm   #2
Edward Huggins
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Default Re: Mystery labyrinth(?) loudspeakers

I think this comes from the days when a lot of ingenious people built experimental homebrew speakers. More the pity that people do not do this today, a time where instant gratification rules!

Labyrinth Enclosures and Concrete Pipe Omni-Directional speakers were typical projects with much added value support from driver manfacturers such as Celestion and Elac. That's the Elac from Tottenham, not Germany! I think this design will be one of them and unique.
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Old 14th Jul 2019, 11:34 pm   #3
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Default Re: Mystery labyrinth(?) loudspeakers

At least the tweeters are by Elac, Edward - one was damaged and I replaced it. I haven't checked the mid/woofers yet.
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Old 15th Jul 2019, 9:01 am   #4
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Default Re: Mystery labyrinth(?) loudspeakers

Ah, that will be the 4" Elac tweeter then. Quite "large" for a Tweeter, they were very popular, quite low-priced and used in many designs. All they needed was a 2uf (today 2.2uf) filter cap and you were off!
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Old 15th Jul 2019, 10:36 am   #5
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Default Re: Mystery labyrinth(?) loudspeakers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Edward Huggins View Post
I think this comes from the days when a lot of ingenious people built experimental homebrew speakers. More the pity that people do not do this today, a time where instant gratification rules ...
I fear that with the introduction of hard science and engineering, including advanced measurement techniques, into speaker design around 50 years ago the standards that the commercial manufacturers could reach became hard to replicate on a DIY basis. However some very good designs have been released onto the market over the years in kit form for self-builders. And now that high quality sound cards and calibrated reference mics have become readily available DIY design, based on manufacturers' Thiele Small parameters, is again possible for the amateur.

If you check Troels Gravesen's pages here http://www.troelsgravesen.dk/Diy_Lou...r_Projects.htm for example, there is clearly a lot going on. I'm about to start building a pair of Dennis Murphy's CAOW1s http://murphyblaster.com/content.php?f=CAOW1.html. I've heard a couple of other pairs and for smallish standmounts they sound very impressive indeed ! Instead of using plywood for the cabinets, however, I'm going to follow a friend's example and make them from Corian. So there is still experimentation out there.

Cheers,

GJ
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Old 15th Jul 2019, 1:43 pm   #6
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Default Re: Mystery labyrinth(?) loudspeakers

The cabs look to have originally been Rex Baldock's Paralines from the 50's or 60's DIY plans? I recall there is a post on here somewhere about that cabinet.
https://www.vintage-radio.net/forum/...light=Paraline
Supposedly very good sounding with an original elec full range driver.
Mike
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Old 15th Jul 2019, 3:36 pm   #7
Edward Huggins
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Default Re: Mystery labyrinth(?) loudspeakers

I believe there was also a version of the Paraline that used an Elac 59RM (9" x 5") single, high flux, full range speaker.
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Old 15th Jul 2019, 4:59 pm   #8
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Default Re: Mystery labyrinth(?) loudspeakers

https://www.falconacoustics.co.uk/

Make finished loudspeakers (LS3/5A) and parts kits too. Astonishingly they have developed and relaunched the KEF B139, B110 and T27 KEF drivers.

I bought the SEAS drivers for Linkwitz LX521 open baffle speakers from them.

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Old 15th Jul 2019, 7:44 pm   #9
John M0GLN
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Default Re: Mystery labyrinth(?) loudspeakers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Whaam68 View Post
The cabs look to have originally been Rex Baldock's Paralines from the 50's or 60's DIY plans?
Mike
Thanks for posting the 'Paraline' info, I've been racking my brains since this thread started, I read about them probably in the 60's or 70's but the 'Para' bit was all I remembered not the full name.

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Old 15th Jul 2019, 7:50 pm   #10
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Default Re: Mystery labyrinth(?) loudspeakers

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Originally Posted by Craig Sawyers View Post
https://www.falconacoustics.co.uk/

Make finished loudspeakers (LS3/5A) and parts kits too. Astonishingly they have developed and relaunched the KEF B139, B110 and T27 KEF drivers.

I bought the SEAS drivers for Linkwitz LX521 open baffle speakers from them.

Craig
Just checked the Falcon website out and seen the price of the B139s!!!!
I have a pair of B139s and matching passive drivers, must dig them out.

Peter
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Old 15th Jul 2019, 11:39 pm   #11
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Default Re: Mystery labyrinth(?) loudspeakers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Whaam68 View Post
The cabs look to have originally been Rex Baldock's Paralines from the 50's or 60's DIY plans? I recall there is a post on here somewhere about that cabinet.
https://www.vintage-radio.net/forum/...light=Paraline
Supposedly very good sounding with an original elec full range driver.
Mike
I think you are right - modified Paralines - that was the design I was hazily aware of from way back when. It's a curious mod though - bass/mid at one end and a tweeter at the other - horizontal or vertical it doesn't make a lot of sense. With their 'new' tweeters, and vertical they have pretty good stereo image - but the mid range at the bottom is pretty weird - I shall extract the drivers and see if they are the Elac full range ones mentioned.
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Old 16th Jul 2019, 12:42 pm   #12
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Default Re: Mystery labyrinth(?) loudspeakers

I think they were a semi- transmission line design....yours look like they've been up ended & what would have been the position of the full range driver is now on the bottom?....not sure if practical but I'd be tempted to try & put these back the way they were designed. Supposed to be very sensitive and good for valves. Somewhere I have a booklet with a number of 60's DIY designs including this one. I've seen a couple of unmolested sets come & go on ebay over the years. Unlike a lot of speakers of this vintage they don't look like they take up too much room!
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Old 16th Jul 2019, 3:07 pm   #13
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Default Re: Mystery labyrinth(?) loudspeakers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Electronpusher0 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Craig Sawyers View Post
https://www.falconacoustics.co.uk/

Make finished loudspeakers (LS3/5A) and parts kits too. Astonishingly they have developed and relaunched the KEF B139, B110 and T27 KEF drivers.

I bought the SEAS drivers for Linkwitz LX521 open baffle speakers from them.

Craig
Just checked the Falcon website out and seen the price of the B139s!!!!
I have a pair of B139s and matching passive drivers, must dig them out.

Peter
Well the retail price index has done a factor of 13 since 1972. Which means that the B139 in 1972 would be 190/13 = 14.60

Looking up the price of the B139 in May 1972, it was 12.50 - so 163 in today's money. So the current price of 190 is 17% more expensive in real terms as compared with 1972.

So actually it is no more (or not much more) expensive than it was back in the day.

Craig
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Old 17th Jul 2019, 8:23 pm   #14
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Default Re: Mystery labyrinth(?) loudspeakers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Whaam68 View Post
I think they were a semi- transmission line design....yours look like they've been up ended & what would have been the position of the full range driver is now on the bottom?....not sure if practical but I'd be tempted to try & put these back the way they were designed. Supposed to be very sensitive and good for valves. Somewhere I have a booklet with a number of 60's DIY designs including this one. I've seen a couple of unmolested sets come & go on ebay over the years. Unlike a lot of speakers of this vintage they don't look like they take up too much room!
From the link in your post above it looks like they were intended to be positioned horizontally on legs - maybe for use in a mono set-up? A stereo pair would take up a lot of space that way round and it would need a very understanding 'er indoors' to put up with that! Yes, the main drivers are Elac - as Edward predicted. I have by-passed the x-over on one and that seems to have improved performance on the whole. The interior angled baffle is there - so they probably are a kind of transmission line. The bass doesn't achieve the Marianna Trench-like lows of my Radfords but it is accurate and not boomy. Not sure what to with them once I have finished playing about (I have too many loudspeakers already).
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Old 17th Jul 2019, 10:06 pm   #15
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Default Re: Mystery labyrinth(?) loudspeakers

I’ve temporarily misplaced the diy booklet but I recall in the original article there are diagrams for several placement options including several for stereo. I’ll see if I can dig it out. I share your pain re too many speakers!
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Old 17th Jul 2019, 10:31 pm   #16
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Default Re: Mystery labyrinth(?) loudspeakers

Here you go!
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Old 17th Jul 2019, 11:27 pm   #17
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Default Re: Mystery labyrinth(?) loudspeakers

Great! Thanks, I shall have a proper look tomorrow. I note the Decca corner horns also - a friend gave up on making a pair back in the 60s and gave the cabs to me - I turned them upside down and inserted a sort of amateur transmission line with Wharfedale 12", 8" and Kef T27s. They were great! (neighbours weren't so complimentary).
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