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Linn Isobarik tweeter replacement options

Discussion in 'audio' started by cctaylor, Mar 8, 2021.

  1. cctaylor

    cctaylor pfm Member

    One of the front tweeters on my active Isobariks has gone silent. Since the top one is working I am assuming that it will need replacing.

    The simple option is to order a non-ferro fluid Scanspeak D2008 from Falcon which is the closest to the original one.

    The more expensive and more radical option is to buy a set of 4 Hiqufon OW1-92s. Has anyone tried replacing the Scanspeaks with the Hiqufons?
     
  2. Enfield boy

    Enfield boy pfm Member

    Interested to see how this goes, my briks are over 30 years old. I would think that all 4 tweeters should be replaced at the same time though.
     
  3. Mr Pig

    Mr Pig ^'- -'^

    These old LInn speakers originally came with both Scanspeak and Hiqufon tweeters. I've had both, I like both but they don't sound the same. If you like the Scanspeaks there is no guarantee you'll think the Hiqufons are an improvement.

    The Hiqufons are more forgiving, easier to get sounding nice. The Scanspeaks are more likely to sound harsh if not treated kindly but the flip side is that they are more dynamic and informative if you do.

    So which is better depends on the context. Personally, if the Scanspeaks were working well in my system I'd be inclined to keep them.
     
  4. linnfomaniac83

    linnfomaniac83 I bet you can’t wheelie a unicycle!

    I’d be inclined towards the Hiquaphons... but it is a fair chunk of money for four of them, I think they’re about £180 each!
     
  5. Charlie_1

    Charlie_1 pfm Member

    Surely its best to replace it with the same as before. Even if you replace both front firing ones, they wont match the upward firing units.

    If hiquphon, then there was a single unit on Ebay earlier today.
     
  6. nostromo

    nostromo pfm Member

    I've had both Scanspeak and Hiquaphon and I prefer the Hiquaphon, they're smoother more sweet and less harsh.... And almost twice the price.
    https://willys-hifi.com/products/hiquphon-ow1-92-tweeter
    £286 for a matched pair.

    If you're used to Scanspeak I would stick with them, Gerry at Falcon Acoustics will be very helpful.

    https://www.falconacoustics.co.uk/drive-units-1/linn-isobarik-replacement-drive-units.html

    They're under £70 each, so less than half the price of the Hiquaphon. But IMHO not as good. Falcon may give you a deal on 4 units so even cheaper.

    I'm absolutely sure my hearing isn't good enough to pick out 0.5 dB difference in a pair of tweeters.... But the Hiquaphon matched pairs promise this level of sameness.

    When I replaced all 4 of mine a couple of years ago it was like having new speakers, they sounded much better, more sparkle and a real delight to listen to.

    I don't think the crossover cares which of these two types are fitted. The screws are a direct fit and may have some thin plastic washers so keep those safe. You'll need a good beefy soldering iron, a hot glue gun and some neutral clear silicone.

    https://www.toolstation.com/dow-cor...xiikCQ_NQ2pjAouOe0DaK-OlybvBM3XgaAiXCEALw_wcB

    Make sure the fit is air tight particularly at the screws if the washers are not there...a dab of silicone will do the job. This worked for me. You'll have most of the silicone as spare.... I used that to stick down some loose paving slabs in the garden.

    I have some pictures of my replacement adventure, let me know if you would like to see them.
     
    linnfomaniac83 likes this.
  7. Martin M

    Martin M Crueller than April

    I'd stay original and the Scanspeaks. The Hiquophons and Scanspeaks are more alike than they are different, your NAXO is set for the Scanspeaks, and I like the idea of the Isobariks being 'original'. You'll likely need some hot melt glue to seal the rear of tweeters once soldered. Cheaper too!
     
  8. cctaylor

    cctaylor pfm Member

    I have just realised that my Sara 9s have Hiqufon tweeters, albeit Linn branded ones. Later this week I will try listening critically to some music where the treble is important. I was thinking of soprano voices both solo and choral and violin for starters. I can compare them with the Isobarik (working mono for the moment).

    I've been looking at the specs for the different tweeters. The Scanspeak D2008/85100 has a sensitivity of 89dB, the Hiqufon OW1-92 87dB and the OW2-92 90dB.

    Hiqufon recommend the OW2 for active systems like mine. The sensitivity is a closer match assuming that the original Scanspeak D2008/8511 have the same sensitivity as the current model.
     
    Mr Pig likes this.
  9. david ellwood

    david ellwood Kirabosi Kognoscente

    Before you change the driver I’d check the wiring to the speaker terminals is ok, a dry joint is not unheard of
     
  10. Charlie_1

    Charlie_1 pfm Member

    What do folks think would be better to replace late Brik tweeters, the modern Hiquphon OW1 or NOS originals, assuming I can find some? I suppose I'm asking if 30 year old NOS will degrade in their box.

    All the Hiquphon ones I've seen have the Linn logo and are sometimes referred to as the Linn tweeter.
     
  11. Mr Pig

    Mr Pig ^'- -'^

    The ones fitted by Linn do but you can't buy them with the logo other than from Linn. I imagine all those guys are long gone.

    From what I can tell they don't degrade with age, just fail suddenly, so I think NOS ones would be fine. If they are much cheaper than the current ones seems good to me.
     
    Charlie_1 likes this.
  12. cctaylor

    cctaylor pfm Member

    Since these speakers are now of a certain age, I'm not sure if Linn offer them as spares now. I know they used to restrict Hiqufon from selling them in the UK or anywhere with a good Linn support network.

    This seems to have changed:

    https://willys-hifi.com/products/hiquphon-ow1-92-tweeter

    The Scanspeaks D2008/85100 are available from Falcon
     
    Charlie_1 likes this.
  13. Charlie_1

    Charlie_1 pfm Member

    Thanks gents.

    @cctaylor yep, Linn stopped selling them many years ago.
     
    cctaylor likes this.
  14. nostromo

    nostromo pfm Member

    Personally, I would not use the OW2. In my experience (with Kans) they are too sensitive and you'll really notice an increase in treble which will make the speakers sound 'toppy'. And dialing it down using an Aktiv xover will be a pain and may upset things. It was an expensive mistake I made and I did tell Oskar of my experience. He convinced me to try them and I thought the very small extra expense was no deterrent if it was an upgrade as he promised. It wasn't an upgrade, it altered the whole sound dramatically. Of course you may like the change, but that extra 3dB sensitivity is very noticeable....the OW2's are noticeably brighter (IMO).

    If you do go the OW2 route....I'd be very interested to hear your experience.
     
    Mr Pig and cctaylor like this.
  15. cctaylor

    cctaylor pfm Member

    @nostromo Thanks for your comments. Getting it wrong would be an expensive mistake. Scanspeaks are the low risk option.
     
    nostromo likes this.
  16. david ellwood

    david ellwood Kirabosi Kognoscente

    Which aktiv crossover are you using?
     
  17. cctaylor

    cctaylor pfm Member

  18. Musicman19

    Musicman19 Active Member

    Try contacting Simon hammnett He sorted one of my fried tweeters with a matched pair of linn logoed hiquphons and fitted them in his house while I waited
     
  19. Dark Lord

    Dark Lord pfm Member

    I would recommend that you change all four at the same time. when I had isobariks I changed the top pair only for some D2008 and left the forward firing pair untouched. For some reason the speaker did not sound the same as before (it took a while for this to be obvious to me).
     
  20. Mr Pig

    Mr Pig ^'- -'^

    All of the prices I've seen for his services and products have been off the scale crazy high. Am I missing something?
     

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