‘New’ Vintage Gems (ADS L910)

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by jkull, Sep 12, 2020.

  1. jkull

    jkull destroyer of cookie cutters Thread Starter

    Location:
    NJ
    Had my eyes on a pair of vintage JBLs which were going to be shipped cross country, and then came across a pair of local vintage ADS L910’s today. Fairly rare, and a top of the line model at this time for ADS. Very very well regarded speakers, at 100lbs each, with built in factory steel stands. These things are built like tanks, bar none, the most sturdy, and overly built speakers I’ve personally felt, with a lot of attention in bracing. 3 way design, bi and tri amp-able with the quick swap of factory supplied cards if desired. Had a chance to hear them at the sellers house and they sounded nothing less than wonderful in his room. Quite the collector to say the least. I am beyond excited with the build quality and over visual appeal of these vintage speakers. I am in the process of selecting what unit will be used to drive this at the moment. Any other owners of these beautiful speakers on here?

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    Last edited: Sep 12, 2020
  2. Phil Thien

    Phil Thien Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    Oh congrats, I lusted for those in my youth.

    The Telarc 1812 album with the canons were actually mastered on a/d/s speakers, a little brother to those.
     
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  3. ls35a

    ls35a Forum Resident

    Location:
    Eagle, Idaho
    These were used as Monitors at Boston Symphony Hall.

    I remember Godehard telling me about how they setup four of these in the parking lot at ADS 'just for the hell of it'.
     
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  4. jkull

    jkull destroyer of cookie cutters Thread Starter

    Location:
    NJ
    I read mention of this in another thread regarding them as well.
     
  5. jkull

    jkull destroyer of cookie cutters Thread Starter

    Location:
    NJ
    I should have mentioned. These are the series 2 of the 910’s. The series two included the bi/tri amp ready cards, as well as the front LED VU meters which fluctuate with the signal fed from the amplifier. Speakers came with original manual/paperwork and functional cards as well.
     
  6. Joefarrell

    Joefarrell Forum Resident

    Absolutely beautiful and with stands too. - WOW. I have 810's - series 1 with cloth grills and 980's - series 2 (if that is what metal grills mean). The cabs on the 980 are rough but all is forgiven when the sonics kick in. Both speakers are fabulous and have come closer than anything I have owned over the years to curing the interminable seeking of the "just right" balance and depth in a speaker without spending a fortune. I love how they sound with just a bit of extra power - using 125 WPC Parasound A23. I would drive halfway across the USA for those 910's. In fact I drove 5 hours each way for the 810's - no regrets whatsoever. Enjoy.
     
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  7. jkull

    jkull destroyer of cookie cutters Thread Starter

    Location:
    NJ
    the 810’s look to be excellent too. To say that I’m excited about these is an understatement. I heard them briefly at the sellers home before packing them up and they were sonically as good as they look, and man do they look. To buy a brand new speaker of this build quality today.... you’d have to spend a fortune.
     
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  8. jkull

    jkull destroyer of cookie cutters Thread Starter

    Location:
    NJ
    Just acquired a new amp and pre for the 910’s. Being driven by an early 90’s McIntosh Mc7150 and C37 pre amp. Just rolling some cassettes this morning, getting a feel for the 910s.

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  9. coolhandjjl

    coolhandjjl Embiggened Pompatus

    Location:
    Appleton
    I came close to pulling the plug on a pair of those in 2010, but I couldn’t justify the 500 mile round trip to get them at the time. Sigh...
    Congrats!!

    I settled on a pair of JBL L100’s instead to go with my Marantz 250M power amp. :D
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2020
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  10. jkull

    jkull destroyer of cookie cutters Thread Starter

    Location:
    NJ
    Nice. I almost bought a very nicely restored pair of L50’s until these arose
     
  11. coolhandjjl

    coolhandjjl Embiggened Pompatus

    Location:
    Appleton
    JBL L150’s? I had a pair, didn’t like them as much as I had thought.

    When the time comes for your kids send you to a home, I’ll take these off your hands :winkgrin:
     
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  12. jeffmackwood

    jeffmackwood Forum Resident

    Location:
    Ottawa
    Very nice!

    I've never heard them but I'm told their high end sounds very similar to the Koss CM Series of speakers (that I love.)

    In looking at the photos with grilles off, I can't help but wonder whether ADS should have perhaps made and sold these as mirror image pairs. (I think that any time I see a speaker with a non-symmetrical layout. :) )

    Jeff
     
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  13. jkull

    jkull destroyer of cookie cutters Thread Starter

    Location:
    NJ
    lol. Yes jbl’s. And it might be a while, we just had our first, shes only 4 months :righton:
     
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  14. jkull

    jkull destroyer of cookie cutters Thread Starter

    Location:
    NJ
    Ultimately would make no difference sound wise from where you’re listening especially for bass waves etc. But for a visual balance I hear ya. I love the aesthetics of these.
     
  15. jeffmackwood

    jeffmackwood Forum Resident

    Location:
    Ottawa
    The Koss CM/530 is the only non-symmetrical speaker that I currently own/use. It can be placed horizontally or vertically, giving eight different positioning options. While I've not tried them all, I can say that the ones that I have tried have shown a marked acoustic difference, most noticeably when placed horizontally. The choice there allows a difference in spacing between the midrange source of up to about two feet. I can see how the ADS, with their vertical configuration, might make little or no difference, as the shift (if non-symmetrical) would only be a few inches at most. Would love to hear a pair of those some day.

    Jeff
     
  16. jkull

    jkull destroyer of cookie cutters Thread Starter

    Location:
    NJ
    This thread is about the ads 910. That said, McIntosh gear now driving them is my initial means of assessing these speakers. Also, the first McIntosh gear I’ve owned. I’ve owned very hi-powered SS monoblocks, quality 845 driven set amps, active loudspeakers, etc. I’m not expert but I believe I have a pretty well rounded ear, and bit of experience at this point with analyzing sound quality, also being an active playing and recording musician for many many years.

    I have not listened to digital through this setup what so ever yet. I had sold my DAC when I got my wireless ls50’s. Now I will need to grab a new DAC for digital again, which I will be doing next. At this point in time I’ve spun one record briefly, and have listened to several cassettes through my vintage technics m270x direct drive deck.

    I am listening at the moment. One thing particularly attractive to this arrangement. Low volume level listening is very, very good. My mc37 pre amp’s digital volume display is on 0. Not 1, 0. And the sound is plenty dynamic, and interesting. For me, this is huge. I do most listening, late night, lights down, wife and newborn as well, now, asleep. This for me, low level listening is important. This setup appears to me excellent. Certainly better than my other large wattage SS, and better than the kefs at low volumes. My set amp through horns was great at low level as well. However, this setup delivers more ‘punch’ at the extremely low level volume, which to those experienced, isn’t much a surprise, as we are talking ss, in comparison to single ended triode here.

    I am driving these speakers with a 150w per channel amp. I have far more power than I could need to drive these speakers. This mc7150 drives the 910’s effortlessly. Full control over the 910’s, and those who have ever heard an amp struggling to handle a load, know the characteristics that are exhibited.. I am confident in the fact that these 910’s 93db sensitivity rating is an accurate spec.

    McIntosh gear is well regarded as being very good for long listening, aka, not fatiguing. These speakers are know for being the same. I can say that this setup as you would thus presume, is very easy to listen to for extended periods. Even if I get the volume up with louder music, it remains easy on the ears. The sound is not slow, with plenty of pace and impact. Too much of a good thing can be, just that.. too much. I was concerned that the McIntosh gear driving the 910’s could be too much of a good thing, but I’m feeling very confident in the match at this point. I feel lucky to have had a pair of these speakers pop up locally, followed by two classic McIntosh pieces immediately following, both within 30 minutes of me. Well cared for, free of weird smells or functionality issues. The mc7150 could maybe use new bulbs for its faceplate and new blue gels as one side is a little faded to a greener shade. That’s really all that is could be touch on. I will get to spinning more vinyl tomorrow. The c37’s phono seems to have a nice sound, however I did try my schitt phono through the c37 but got quite a bit of hum. Like too much hum to really even use it. Possible grounding or something. I will troubleshoot with that a bit more. May have also been the rca’s I was using from the table to the schitt.

    as for now, I believe this setup will be sticking around. It’s easy to say that, but I think I have a very capable, and reliable chain here, that sounds great at both lower and higher volume levels, that is anything but fatiguing.
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2020
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