High-end father’s day mishap - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 22 Old 06-15-2014, 06:28 PM - Thread Starter
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High-end father’s day mishap

For father’s day weekend, I was going to set up my high-end system. It felt more like Christmas with all of the boxes; Salon2s,Voice2, Theta Casablanca IIIHD with extreme DACs, 3 Theta Prometheus, SimAudioMiND streamer etc. My eight year old son was helping. Good bonding stuff. He was having fun pushing the buttons on the amps etc. This was of course at my direction while explaining the amps, wires, don’t touch the speakers, etc.

We got stereo sound up and running pretty quickly. It sounded great for no tweaks and things not being broken in. So I unpacked the Voice2 and I asked him to power up the Casablanca. It went something like this:

Father: "Turn on the processor"

Son: "Which one is that?"

Father: “The thing on the stand."

Son: "Which button?"

Father: "It's just like the one on the amps except it's in the lower left corner.”

Son: “It’s not working”

Father: "Must be in standby, press it again."

So what button did he push? Well two. Apparently the first attempt was the left woofer on the Voice2 which now has small finger prints on it (it's titanium so it should be OK, right?). The second attempt was the beryllium tweeter on theVoice2 which is caved in!

Good God out of the box for 30 minutes, the bright-red protective tweeter cover off for 15 minutes, never powered up and it’s toast. That’s got to be some sort of record:-)

I suppose I could have been more clear... or had the grills on. His defense is "Mom said she would have done the same thing" -- well that's why we don't let mom set up the home theather stuff!

Do I have to ship it back to Revel or can a local shop repair it? Any idea what this bonding experience is going to cost me?
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post #2 of 22 Old 06-15-2014, 07:58 PM
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Could have been worse.. Part of fatherhood. He didn't do it on purpose and had no reason to know.

Certainly can be repaired. I very much doubt you are the first to have a tweeter pushed in. If it's new and you want to maintain warranty, you will likely need to send it in or have dealer do it.

My son is the only other one in my family who knows how to use our stereo!
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post #3 of 22 Old 06-16-2014, 09:02 AM
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Originally Posted by boston55 View Post
Do I have to ship it back to Revel or can a local shop repair it? Any idea what this bonding experience is going to cost me?
Sorry to hear - this is the equivalence of curbing my 911's freshly painted front lip as I left the paint shop; I almost fainted . Not to worry, based on personal experience, time will heal this wound.

The woofer sounds fine. The tweeter sounds like it needs to be replaced, and if so, I would think the best way is for Revel to send a new tweeter to you, and you could have a local shop do it, or even do it yourself. Soldering of tweeter 2 wire leads should be easy, just make sure you don't damage other drivers (dripping solder, the hot gun, your elbow rest) because then you WILL really want to jump off the bridge :-).

Congrats on a FANTASTIC sound system. Revel speakers have top notch sound to my ears: tuneful and tight bass & extreme high resolution; I always enjoyed their demo greatly.

Regards, Can
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post #4 of 22 Old 06-16-2014, 06:35 PM
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I agree - great gear! Wow, what a story. I suspect that the tweeter may be a little pricey. Perhaps get in touch with Revel directly and who knows they may sympathize and offer a good deal on a replacement tweeter. It probably won't need to be soldered - most speakers I've tinkered with have push-on connectors for the tweeter.

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post #5 of 22 Old 06-16-2014, 07:27 PM
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Since the damage is done...

Take a piece of sticky tape, maybe blue painters tape, and make a loop, adhesive side out.

Gently touch the tape to the tweeter dome and quickly pull it back, like you're testing something hot with your finger tips. You should be able to pop the dome back out. You will probably have a small visible crease on the surface, but the tweeter should sound OK and you won't see it with the grill on and no one will know except you.

If you're obsessive, change out the tweeter.

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post #6 of 22 Old 06-16-2014, 07:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Bogg View Post
I agree - great gear! Wow, what a story. I suspect that the tweeter may be a little pricey. Perhaps get in touch with Revel directly and who knows they may sympathize and offer a good deal on a replacement tweeter. It probably won't need to be soldered - most speakers I've tinkered with have push-on connectors for the tweeter.
I fried the tweeter midrange coax driver of my Thiel SCS center speaker (testing Super 8's train wreck sequence, what else) and it was a pleasant surprise to find out it costs only about $300. But you are right, this one might hurt a little more, beryllium *sounds* expensive.

I would be quite surprised if these top notch Revel speakers use push on connector though. For one, whether it sounds better or not, it would be suicidal if audiophile mag reviewers find out these $10000 plus babies use push on connector. It's an "audiophile" taboo! My Thiel drivers are all solder'ed, and the roll I bought many years ago HAD to be the "silver" type to be same as my speaker wire . (It's WBT 4% silver solder only.).

Regards, Can
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post #7 of 22 Old 06-16-2014, 07:41 PM
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Use a vacuum cleaner to pop your crushed dome back the right way !!
I've done this a few time with various speakers. would this not work with a more expensive driver also? It couldn't hurt it anymore could it?

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post #8 of 22 Old 06-16-2014, 10:52 PM
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Yikes that's a bad one.

I have a similar story.

I used to review speakers for an on-line magazine. I had a big pair of Thiel speakers in the house for review which had proprietary metal drivers and listed at around $12,000 (as I remember). My son was about 3 or 4 years old. We'd completely kid proofed the house with all of those door lock devices, and the AC covers etc. But my son ironically never ever showed interest in opening those doors and just generally didn't wreck things. Still, I was paranoid enough that I never took the speaker grills off for quite a while to expose those drivers. About a week in I said "I have to listen to these without the grills at some point" so, knowing that my son was in the back of the house and I was in the front, I took off the speaker grills, leaned them against the wall, walked to the CD player and was just putting a CD in while I heard "thump, thump, thump, thump, thump...daddy!...thump, thump, thump...."

It was my son running toward the room. I said "hold it, don't come in, don't..." and he flew into the room, turning his head to look at me and immediately tripped toward the speakers, putting his elbow through the exposed woofer.

I'd estimate the grill had been off the speaker for all of 30 seconds....and still...disaster.

Kids are like macro versions of quantum effects or something, mini chaos generators - you can absolutely predict that accidents will happen, but never the specific accident.
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post #9 of 22 Old 06-17-2014, 09:18 AM
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…proud owner of 2 crushed CAT midrange dust-caps…. thank God the Morel tweeters popped back out on their own every time.

he knows better now…. but that age… everything looks like a button.

What can you do, really? It's not like we all don't value our children much more than some speakers or electronics.

I'd say that the price to replace that tweeter is going to be 400-500: the Be tweets are typically pretty spendy.

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post #10 of 22 Old 06-17-2014, 02:15 PM
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This may be marketing gibberish, but I am under the impression that all of the Revels are voice-matched at the factory and are a matched pair...so this may be much more complicated than just putting in a new part in your garage.
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post #11 of 22 Old 06-17-2014, 02:19 PM
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What they call "voice matching" is likely a QC verification of frequency response via a sweep. Most manufacturers have a frequency response range that is acceptable- if the loudspeaker adheres to that range, it is voiced-matched to the others.

Centers are likely produced separately since they are single units.

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post #12 of 22 Old 06-17-2014, 04:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DanFrancis View Post
What they call "voice matching" is likely a QC verification of frequency response via a sweep. Most manufacturers have a frequency response range that is acceptable- if the loudspeaker adheres to that range, it is voiced-matched to the others.

Centers are likely produced separately since they are single units.
Way back in time, Spica did this with their tweeters and found it was statistically reliable.

However, the low frequency units they used had enough variation that Spica dived the units into three groups with a service code ID number and tweaked the cross-over components accordingly.
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post #13 of 22 Old 06-17-2014, 06:04 PM
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I fried the tweeter midrange coax driver of my Thiel SCS center speaker (testing Super 8's train wreck sequence, what else) and it was a pleasant surprise to find out it costs only about $300. But you are right, this one might hurt a little more, beryllium *sounds* expensive.

I would be quite surprised if these top notch Revel speakers use push on connector though. For one, whether it sounds better or not, it would be suicidal if audiophile mag reviewers find out these $10000 plus babies use push on connector. It's an "audiophile" taboo! My Thiel drivers are all solder'ed, and the roll I bought many years ago HAD to be the "silver" type to be same as my speaker wire . (It's WBT 4% silver solder only.).
Take a look at most of the well known tweeters - Dynaudio Esotar, Morel "superdome" etc... and they all have push-on connectors. Revel makes their own tweeters so they may have done something different or soldered like your Thiel (which uses drivers made by Thiel). One of the issues (I was told) with soldering a wire to the tweeter post is that the wire is very low gauge and the heat from the soldering process could cause damage. Also, a "cold" solder joint can develop especially with dissimilar materials.


The price of the speakers doesn't dictate the connection type. My ATCs are considerably more money than the Salon2s but they use a push-on connector for the tweeter (which isn't an ATC-made tweeter yet - that's coming out soon), and it stands up to studio use and abuse. The connector to the mid is like a banana plug and the connector to the woofer is a spring-loaded doohickey.


Back in the day I used Wonder Solder, but it was 2%, not 4% like the WBT. Ah the memories of tweaking. I modded the crossover in my Nelson-Reed 8/04c speakers with bypass caps and aircore inductors. It did change the sound, but actually not all for the better.

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post #14 of 22 Old 06-17-2014, 06:09 PM
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Oh I also have a cringeworthy story, but not as bad as the OPs. I slaved away working at McDs in high school and saved up to get a pair of Technics SB-M3 "monitor" speakers. They are surprisingly heavy standmount speakers. One day I was lifting the speaker off the stand and grazed the flat cone of the woofer because I didn't wait for my bro to come downstairs. Aarrgh, that bugged me for a long time but it was just cosmetic.


I had a removable arm on my Denon DP59 turntable and one day while I was taking it off I laid it on a piece of plastic and the needle snagged the plastic and bent the stylus. I consoled myself with a Signet cartridge, lol.


Can, I can just imagine the horror as you curbed the bumper of your car. My first spoiler rash was shortly after I got the car while I was pulling into a gas station. Now I drive at an angle for anything that isn't perfectly flat.

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post #15 of 22 Old 06-17-2014, 06:12 PM
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My wife's nephews were over years ago when we lived in a condo and the little buggars were eyeballing my standmount ATC 50s. They wanted to touch the midrange dome. I nearly ruptured my bladder holding my pee for so long so that I didn't leave them alone with the speakers, lol.

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post #16 of 22 Old 06-18-2014, 05:13 AM
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think so,It was my son running toward the room. I said "hold it, don't come in, don't..." and he flew into the room, turning his head to look at me and immediately tripped toward the speakers, putting his elbow through the exposed woofer.thanks
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post #17 of 22 Old 06-18-2014, 10:42 AM
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Can, I can just imagine the horror as you curbed the bumper of your car. My first spoiler rash was shortly after I got the car while I was pulling into a gas station. Now I drive at an angle for anything that isn't perfectly flat.
Yep that's the word; not just any lip, it was the Techart lip that had just been freshly painted. You are talking about 0.01 mile of driving when I damaged it. I think I came close to going into an anaphylactic shock; for sure I was short of breath for a few minutes.
Audio-wise I was hanging some picture on the wall and managed to drop the hammer onto my Apogee Caliper bass panel. The pain... the horror...

This thread is testament to why Buddha said the things you love are the things that will bring you pain :-).

Regards, Can
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post #18 of 22 Old 06-18-2014, 12:56 PM - Thread Starter
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I contacted Harmon and they were very responsive. $629, in stock and I can remove it with a hex wrench and solder it without voiding the warranty. Apparently beryllium isn't as expensive as I feared:-)
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post #19 of 22 Old 06-18-2014, 06:23 PM
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I contacted Harmon and they were very responsive. $629, in stock and I can remove it with a hex wrench and solder it without voiding the warranty. Apparently beryllium isn't as expensive as I feared:-)

Glad you feel that way! It IS expensive for a tweeter, but it isn't mass produced so a premium is expected. For comparison, a Dynaudio Esotar tweeter is considerably less money. I think the diamond domes in some speakers are even more money. So that answers the question about soldered connection - be careful with the heat. Use gravity to "drop" a small amount of silver solder onto the connection rather than applying any pressure with the soldering iron. Anyway, it's only money and it will be nice when you can kick back and enjoy your wonderful system.

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post #20 of 22 Old 06-19-2014, 07:02 AM
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I contacted Harmon and they were very responsive. $629, in stock and I can remove it with a hex wrench and solder it without voiding the warranty. Apparently beryllium isn't as expensive as I feared:-)
Are you an expert at soldering already? Ignore the following if you are (since I most definitely am not :-) - any pro please correct me as needed): what works best for me with these larger wires is the 30 watt setting of the Radioshack soldering iron, but be careful and don't apply too long because you could melt the plastic mounting point for the tweeter's connector.

I think the 15 watt setting is for more refined work; it definitely not hot enough for amateurish me. Also ask Revel to send you same solder that they use, if you are the OCD type like me.

Regards, Can
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post #21 of 22 Old 06-19-2014, 07:21 AM
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Had a Superbowl party and one of the uninvited (teen) guests was sliding into position, very close to my MBL 101's. He got banished to the back row.

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post #22 of 22 Old 06-23-2014, 11:02 AM
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Best of luck with the Be tweeter replacement.

Interesting stories from everyone. Myself, standing in front of some custom in-walls, circa late 80's, I was showing off my handywork to a colleague. As a very cool tweak, I'd placed/glued dozens of foam earplugs on end, in concentric rings surrounding the dome tweeter. As I'd come up with this idea on my own, I was proudly and enthusiastically explaining the supposed benefits of the anti-diffraction solution I'd come up with.

Well, after listening to my entire explanation, this guy sticks out his index finger, ... asking "what's this?", ... as he pushes in and damaging the soft dome tweeter. Yeah, a sober, otherwise high functioning 30 year old adult male, asking that question and doing that damage.

My wife and I never really baby proofed anything but chemicals and electrical outlets, fortunately we never encountered any mishaps with gear or otherwise. It is a nice common interest and area for bonding with my son. He's a teen now, and he's always been interested and involved with the system and DIY projects (my IB etc.).

Again, best of luck with the replacement piece. Some updates with pics of internals would be interesting too.
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