Billfort's Altec 604 ramblings

mhardy6647

Señor Member
Very nice! Thanks for sharing that, Bill.
It does give me an idea as to how to handle the rear-mounted 604Es...
 

mhardy6647

Señor Member
You know -- I thought maybe we were nuts.
Wait, let me rephrase that.

In case you ever get the feeling that you might be nuts with a pair of large-ish BR cabinets loaded with Duplexes.

You ain't nuts.

This guy.
Nuts.

http://www.hostboard.com/forums/f700/174720-604-8g-big-cabinets-big-sound/index2.html


 

mhardy6647

Señor Member
It's like crossing the streams in Ghostbusters, isn't it?

Spengler: There's something very important I forgot to tell you.
Venkman: What?
Spengler: Don't cross the streams.
Venkman: Why?
Spengler: It would be bad.
Venkman: I'm fuzzy on the whole good/bad thing. What do you mean, "bad"?
Spengler: Try to imagine all life as you know it stopping instantaneously and every molecule in your body exploding at the speed of light.
Stantz: Total protonic reversal!
Venkman: Right. That's bad. Okay. All right. Important safety tip. Thanks, Egon.

OMMV*, of course, but "all life as you know it stopping instantaneously and every molecule in your body exploding at the speed of light" definitely reminds me of the classic JBL midrange sound.

------------------
* One's Mileage May Vary
 

mhardy6647

Señor Member
Less so than you might think!

With the JBL connected as a 'supertweeter' (i.e., just swapped in for the Fostexes, with the pads adjusted for the sensitivity of the mostah JBL drivers) the sound was nice and snappy.

At the advice of -- well, lots of local folk -- I tried swapping the JBL for the coax treble driver on the Duplex (in other words, disconnected the Duplex treble driver and hooked the XO output to the JBL). The dispersion of the JBL horns certainly seems superior. The treble/HF seems a little recessed compared to the Duplex horn -- I have NOT played with the levels on the XOs yet (because I have been either too lazy or too busy to document the current settings on the XOs so I can return to them when I return to my senses).

Bill, if this is a threadcarp ;-) let me know!

Maybe (?!?) I should start a new thread?

Not entirely sure it's worth it (unless there's some interest -- I'm just playing around again!).
 

Audionut

Next Round Is On Me
One of the local gurus just shared a link with me that was -- well -- new to me.
My apologies if you've seen this before, and my extreme apologies if this link's already been shared here someplace! :p

https://paperandoil.com/kodawari-chronicles-altec-604-enclosure-5d2e3581269


It's a kind of interesting blog, too.
That’s one of my favorite reads, along with the Stereophile article. I think this guy had a two part article too, along with other interesting reads.
 
This thread has compelled me to search for some 604's.

I've found a pair of 604-8Gs and am in the process of negotiating with the owner - I'm not familiar with this site's rules, would it be gauche to ask what a reasonable offer on such a pair of speakers would be?
 

billfort

Administrator
Staff member
This thread has compelled me to search for some 604's.

I've found a pair of 604-8Gs and am in the process of negotiating with the owner - I'm not familiar with this site's rules, would it be gauche to ask what a reasonable offer on such a pair of speakers would be?
Hello gavcnew - welcome to HiFiHaven!

If you do some searching here you'll find a bunch of recent discussion around pricing of 604s, from used to the newest offerings of Great Plains Audio. IMO there is no easy answer to this question - there are so many variables around drivers this old (the 604-8G was made in the mid 70's) like condition and fair-market value in the age of the Internet, that it's just too hard to say what 'reasonable' would be.

I have 604-8Gs, bought from the original owner about 15yrs ago, and I paid $650 for them back then (in ratty cabinets), but;
  • that's 15yrs ago in essentially pre-Internet inflated dollars - today?
  • they were as close to 'mint' as these things get, which is particularly important with the cones - some say original cones are worth paying much more for instead of something that needs a re-cone
  • one of my compression driver diaphragm leads broke soon after purchase so I replaced the pair for about $145 from GPA - from what I hear, that common problem/fix is about $300 now
  • the 8G is an alnico speaker - which were susceptible to weakening from over-powering or sharp impacts - they can be re-charged but that means sending them to GPA - which might get expensive considering shipping these things
I love these speakers and find them worth every penny they demand - but you should keep your perspective when chasing fragile antiques here - you can still buy them new from an Altec icon - Bill Hanuschak/GPA; always good to keep in mind what 'new' would cost.

Having said all that though, I have happily listened to these for a long time, like what I like, and would not want to be without them, so; if starting over and had a chance to pick up a 'mint' or even real good working condition pair of 604-8Gs with good cones - I'd pay all the way up to 'new' dollars on them.

Did I mention I like them? :)
 
This thread has compelled me to search for some 604's.

I've found a pair of 604-8Gs and am in the process of negotiating with the owner - I'm not familiar with this site's rules, would it be gauche to ask what a reasonable offer on such a pair of speakers would be?

Where are you located?
Do you have an further info or photos on the drivers you are looking at?
 
Thanks for the help, all. I'll do some more digging in the forums to see if what I'm comfortable spending on these aligns with where prices are.

I'm in North Texas and have been looking within a 3 hour drive from home.

Sadly no pics yet. And no set price. (There's some work to be done.)
 

Thermionics

Post Whore In Training
I love these speakers and find them worth every penny they demand - but you should keep your perspective when chasing fragile antiques here - you can still buy them new from an Altec icon - Bill Hanuschak/GPA; always good to keep in mind what 'new' would cost.

Yeah. Unfortunately, Bill (H) does not list the prices on the Altec 604-8H-III drivers on the GPA site. Or any prices, for that matter. I suppose that's a good way to get marketing leads (have to contact for prices). I've got an inquiry to Bill - I'll let everyone know what he says.

(also have an inquiry to Pete Riggle about his 604-8H-III MTL cabinets and crossovers as he mentions them but no price listed)

-D
 
Thanks for the help, all. I'll do some more digging in the forums to see if what I'm comfortable spending on these aligns with where prices are.

I'm in North Texas and have been looking within a 3 hour drive from home.

Sadly no pics yet. And no set price. (There's some work to be done.)

In all honesty, I would not buy vintage again unless you have time, space, and patients. I have gone down that road many times and it has been fun but also frustrating. You never know when something will require repair. Or costly upgrade... For me, I have limited space, so I can only have one set of large speakers in my home. Repairs meant I wasn’t listening to records for sometimes weeks. Given that GPA will sell a complete new system, the choice for me was simple. If you call Bill he will give you a great price on a pair of ferrite 604s with crossover.
 

Thermionics

Post Whore In Training
In all honesty, I would not buy vintage again unless you have time, space, and patients. I have gone down that road many times and it has been fun but also frustrating. You never know when something will require repair. Or costly upgrade... For me, I have limited space, so I can only have one set of large speakers in my home. Repairs meant I wasn’t listening to records for sometimes weeks. Given that GPA will sell a complete new system, the choice for me was simple. If you call Bill he will give you a great price on a pair of ferrite 604s with crossover.

Right now, it sounds as-if a pair of GPA 604-8G-III ferrite-magnet drivers + crossovers will run you about $2150 (not sure if that includes shipping) from Bill. All things being equal, if that means trouble-free drivers that never have to be re-gaussed, that's a pretty damn good deal. I'm trying to find out (for giggles) how much Pete Riggle's MLTL cabinet for the 604-8G-III plans run (since he mentions them on his site, but doesn't provide a price).

-D
 
Right now, it sounds as-if a pair of GPA 604-8G-III ferrite-magnet drivers + crossovers will run you about $2150 (not sure if that includes shipping) from Bill. All things being equal, if that means trouble-free drivers that never have to be re-gaussed, that's a pretty damn good deal. I'm trying to find out (for giggles) how much Pete Riggle's MLTL cabinet for the 604-8G-III plans run (since he mentions them on his site, but doesn't provide a price).

-D

I have a similar MLTL set of plans (the Bison) I purchased for cheap. ...currently under construction. Stay tuned.
 
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