Acoustic research ar 3 service manual

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acoustic research ar 3 service manual

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Restoring the AR-3a © 2007 The Classic Speaker Pages

Restoring the AR-3a

Roy Champagne, Ken Kanmr, Minh Luong, John O'Hanlon (Ed. ), Bret Thiel, and Tom Tyson
6 December 2007

Welcome fellow AR traveler! If you are reading this, you are probably considering repairing or
restoring an old AR-3a pair. For some, this restoration process is an afternoon of effort and a few
dollars in suppliesijust to get some reasonable sounds going. For others, it is a consuming quest
for perfect authenticity. Either way, it's a lot of fun and a good learning experience. Only you can
decide how much time and money you want to devote, and the job also depends on the physical
and electrical condition of your speakers. As a first step, take a look at the flow-chart included
here to get an idea of the task at hand. Many of us are very passionate about the 3a and consider
it a landmark product in the history of loudspeaker development. A properly restored pair can
sonically rival the best modern speakers and will reward the investment of effort put into them.
However, even a basically repaired pair will be capable of providing much listening pleasure for
years to come. [KK]

Table of Contents

1 What is it? 2 3.9 Replace the Capacitors? Options 16
2 Identifying and Checking Components 2 3.10 Early Woofer Inductor Replacement 17
2.1 Useful Tools 2 3.11 Grilles and Badges 17
2.2 Getting Started 3 4 Re-assembly 19
2.3 Removing the Grille 4 4.1 Gasket Materials 19
2.4 Check for Visible Damage 4 4.2 Installing Mid- and Hi-range Drivers 20
2.5 Low-Level Listening 5 4.3 Stuffing the Cabinet 21
2.6 Woofer Diagnosis: Low Level Audio 5 4.4 Installing the Woofer 21
2.7 Mid-Range Diagnosis: Low Level Audio 6 4.5 Testing for Acoustic Leaks 22
2.8 Hi-Range Diagnosis: Low Level Audio 6 4.6 Remounting Grilles and Badges 22
2.9 Play it Again, Sam 6 4.7 Testing Your Speakers 22
2.10 All Systems -Go" 7 4.8 Finished! 23
3 How to Fix It 7 Acknowledgement 23
3.1 Removing Woofer 8 Appendix: Driver Identification 23
3.2 Removing Mid-range and Hi-range 8 A.1 Woofers 23
3.3 Repair or Replace the Woofer? 8 A.2 Mid-range Drivers 24
3.4 Removing the Stuffing 9 A3 Hi-Range Drivers 25
3.5 What-s Inside? 9 A.4 Driver Images 26
3.6 Replace the Mid-range driver? 11 Woofer 27
3.7 Replace the Hi-range driver? 11 Mid-Range 29
3.8 Replace or Restore Potentiometers 13 Hi-Range 31