AR3 Speakers Value?? Acoustic Research

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who?me?

AR3 Speakers Value?? Acoustic Research
« on: 21 Oct 2019, 11:44 pm »
hey,
I did a search in all the Circles, and nothing really came up for the AR3s in terms of repairing, etc.
I was surprised. Maybe someone can point me in the right direction.

I have a pair of AR3s with Mint condition grills and cabinets (for the most part). In one speaker, the mid cone doesn't work. On the other speaker, the Mid cone and the tweeter don't work.

I haven't worked in over a year, have hit hard times $$, and need to sell them for money to live off.
Please don't judge, I need help to sell these at an appropriate price.

I saw similar AR3s on eBay going for $2000-$3000 per pair. (These are the speakers that are in the Smithsonian and tested by Edgar Villchur in the 1960s in the famous "Live Music vs Recorded Audio  tests")

Im looking for is some advice on how to sell these for a fair amount, even though they sell high due to their classic audiophile status. The grills have never been taken off. I can see through the grill with a strong flashlight and see that the woofer foams/surrounds are still intact. The tweeter and mid range driver domes are not pushed in, I see no damage. The Pots need replacement, as I can hear the scratchy sound from the oxidation and breakdown of the pots over time.

I can do easy repairs, like the pots and such, but I am reluctant to even open up the grills and speakers, since it seems that a collector may pay more for an unadulterated pair that hasn't had someone monkeying around inside. Otherwise, this pair is like a "barn find". I found them enclosed in 2 separate cabinets, protected from sunlight/sundamage, from rambunctious kids and grandkids. The AR3s may have been in there for years, but Im actually guessing decades, since they are so persevered in good condition.

If I could sell for a little more with a professional refurbishment, I would consider that as well.
But this is new to me, any suggestions will be appreciated.
Thank you

I will paste a couple pics below,













WGH

Re: AR3 Speakers Value?? Acoustic Research
« Reply #1 on: 22 Oct 2019, 12:24 am »
In one speaker, the mid cone doesn't work. On the other speaker, the Mid cone and the tweeter don't work.

Hifishark lists AR3 midrange and tweeters, without those working parts you are essentially selling a woofer in a nice box.
https://www.hifishark.com/search?q=AR3+speaker

eBay has an AR3a speaker without a midrange and tweeter for $150, you should be able to get $300 for the pair as is.
https://www.ebay.com/itm/184002895235

Restored with all drivers working and the woofer surround replaced you could get $700
https://www.ebay.com/itm/223714475703

After all the cheap AR3 speakers have been sold and yours are the only eBay listing then you can name your price, timing is everything.

who?me?

Re: AR3 Speakers Value?? Acoustic Research
« Reply #2 on: 22 Oct 2019, 09:00 pm »
Hifishark lists AR3 midrange and tweeters, without those working parts you are essentially selling a woofer in a nice box.
https://www.hifishark.com/search?q=AR3+speaker

eBay has an AR3a speaker without a midrange and tweeter for $150, you should be able to get $300 for the pair as is.
https://www.ebay.com/itm/184002895235

Restored with all drivers working and the woofer surround replaced you could get $700
https://www.ebay.com/itm/223714475703

After all the cheap AR3 speakers have been sold and yours are the only eBay listing then you can name your price, timing is everything.

Thx WGH,
THe 3 sites are useful, they seem to take a picture of the current AR3's for sale. As you said, timing is everything, but I don't have that much time to wait.
-HiFi Shark is a great resource

- the second site - the idea being to refurb my AR3s myself- is a good one. But Im hesitant. You are right that my AR3s are just boxes with grills and basically 2 working woofers. But they are the nicest grills I have seen, and some of the nicest wood boxes I have seen. This might be valuable to someone who wants to personally oversee the restoration, done by a pro shop. I guess that is the kind of buyer I am HOPING for.

-Im afraid that as soon as I open the grills and poke around, a potential buyer would say that they are no longer "pure". I understand. I used to have an old 1980 VW camper van, and I think every Tom, Dick, and Harry goofed around in there, screwing up the electrical system and such.

-the last site helps too. the pair for $699 that the guy refurbed the cones/tweeter. But his grills are garbage, and the box, by his own admission, are toasted. Thats why he is only selling for $700.
-All this info helps me triangulate a proper price for what I have to offer.

will see if there are any more responses the next few days, then maybe just post them and see what happens.
Thanks again


WGH

Re: AR3 Speakers Value?? Acoustic Research
« Reply #3 on: 23 Oct 2019, 01:14 am »
...then maybe just post them and see what happens.

Decide how much money you need and list them for that much, someone may make an offer you can't refuse.

S Clark

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Re: AR3 Speakers Value?? Acoustic Research
« Reply #4 on: 23 Oct 2019, 03:03 am »
Looks like working pairs have sold on ebay for $300 to $800.  Yeah there are guys asking $1500^ but they don't sell or sold under "best offer".  If you can get $375 for a non-working pair, I'd take the money.  They are somewhat collectable, but not really great speakers.  Our regarded member Dennis Murphy posted about his inability to make a crossover that would correct their issues. 
Going for $3000??? Not even Canadian. 
Understand that what someone is asking on Ebay, and what they get are two different things.   Type in the model and look for "sold" under "Show Only" over in the left hand margin.  Then find those that actually have bids next to them to see which really sold, and which simply ran out of time. 
Oh, and don't be afraid to dig into them.  They aren't like valuable antiques that lose 50% if the varnish is wrong. Just don't ding them up.
« Last Edit: 23 Oct 2019, 01:47 pm by S Clark »

Shakeydeal

Re: AR3 Speakers Value?? Acoustic Research
« Reply #5 on: 23 Oct 2019, 01:20 pm »
Then there's this guy......


https://www.audiogon.com/listings/lis9hjch-speaker-template-1-full-range


Not sure what he's smoking......


Shakey

gab

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Re: AR3 Speakers Value?? Acoustic Research
« Reply #6 on: 23 Oct 2019, 02:44 pm »
Then there's this guy......


https://www.audiogon.com/listings/lis9hjch-speaker-template-1-full-range


Not sure what he's smoking......


Shakey

We should all offer him $50 shipped!

WGH

Re: AR3 Speakers Value?? Acoustic Research
« Reply #7 on: 23 Oct 2019, 05:41 pm »
If you want $2000 you are going to have to take them apart. The midrange and tweeters may be fine but corroded pots and/or failed capacitors may be the problem. The only way to know for sure is to remove the woofer and dive in. Read the pot cleaning thread:

http://www.classicspeakerpages.net/IP.Board/index.php?/topic/2165-how-to-clean-pots-ar3-newbie-seeking-info/

"...you will want to replace all of the capacitors too. When completely defective (all of the ones in the AR speakers I acquired were) they will prevent the midrange and tweeter from functioning..."

"You asked how to remove the pots. You have to remove the woofer and work from inside the cabinet. As was mentioned you may as well replace the caps while you are at it. Be sure to retain the fiberglass stuffing and replace it (the exact amount) when you are ready to put it all back together. You will probably need new caulking for the woofer. Mortite rope caulk works, as does the black brick of goo sold in the electrical supply section of a hardware store.

The pots are held in by nuts, removable from the outside but then you pull the pot itself out through the woofer opening."

 

aldcoll

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Re: AR3 Speakers Value?? Acoustic Research
« Reply #8 on: 23 Oct 2019, 07:08 pm »
Whowwwwiee zowie.  WGH that classicspeakers.net  is a gold mine for the AR family.  20 plus page with photo identification of AR3 how to rebuild looks like somebody is a true beliver/AR Lover.

I am going to repo my AR1's from the daughter for a winter project.

Alan

WGH

Re: AR3 Speakers Value?? Acoustic Research
« Reply #9 on: 23 Oct 2019, 08:39 pm »
The "Thoughts on AR-3 Schematics" article mentions that the crossover/polarity of the drivers changed over the years. If drivers need to be replaced the correct polarity needs to be maintained.

Determining the polarity of a midrange or tweeter used to be very hard but now with smart phones the test is easy.
I have used Polarity Checker for Android and it works great, I changed my old dipole speakers to bipole and the app easily identified which drivers were out of phase.

iPhones can use Speaker Polarity (Speaker Pop)



Watch the videos, the testing method is the same for all apps:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x-W0T1cTjos

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L7EwxmtTDV4




who?me?

Re: AR3 Speakers Value?? Acoustic Research
« Reply #10 on: 2 Nov 2019, 12:07 am »
Decide how much money you need and list them for that much, someone may make an offer you can't refuse.

Lets hope!
thx Gary

who?me?

Re: AR3 Speakers Value?? Acoustic Research
« Reply #11 on: 2 Nov 2019, 12:08 am »
Looks like working pairs have sold on ebay for $300 to $800.  Yeah there are guys asking $1500^ but they don't sell or sold under "best offer".  If you can get $375 for a non-working pair, I'd take the money.  They are somewhat collectable, but not really great speakers.  Our regarded member Dennis Murphy posted about his inability to make a crossover that would correct their issues. 
Going for $3000??? Not even Canadian. 
Understand that what someone is asking on Ebay, and what they get are two different things.   Type in the model and look for "sold" under "Show Only" over in the left hand margin.  Then find those that actually have bids next to them to see which really sold, and which simply ran out of time. 
Oh, and don't be afraid to dig into them.  They aren't like valuable antiques that lose 50% if the varnish is wrong. Just don't ding them up.

good point, look up the SOLD prices, not the "for sale" prices  :duh:

"Going for $3000??? Not even Canadian."  :lol:

who?me?

Re: AR3 Speakers Value?? Acoustic Research
« Reply #12 on: 2 Nov 2019, 12:11 am »
If you want $2000 you are going to have to take them apart. The midrange and tweeters may be fine but corroded pots and/or failed capacitors may be the problem. The only way to know for sure is to remove the woofer and dive in. Read the pot cleaning thread:

http://www.classicspeakerpages.net/IP.Board/index.php?/topic/2165-how-to-clean-pots-ar3-newbie-seeking-info/

"...you will want to replace all of the capacitors too. When completely defective (all of the ones in the AR speakers I acquired were) they will prevent the midrange and tweeter from functioning..."

"You asked how to remove the pots. You have to remove the woofer and work from inside the cabinet. As was mentioned you may as well replace the caps while you are at it. Be sure to retain the fiberglass stuffing and replace it (the exact amount) when you are ready to put it all back together. You will probably need new caulking for the woofer. Mortite rope caulk works, as does the black brick of goo sold in the electrical supply section of a hardware store.

The pots are held in by nuts, removable from the outside but then you pull the pot itself out through the woofer opening."


Awesome. thank you. I had found that website .... classic yada yada.net, and tried to open the page. but it was down for over a week, and I thought they may have just axed the site. that's when I turned to you guys, here.
Me? I need a roadmap for this project, not like the first time its been done before.

who?me?

Re: AR3 Speakers Value?? Acoustic Research
« Reply #13 on: 2 Nov 2019, 12:15 am »
Whowwwwiee zowie.  WGH that classicspeakers.net  is a gold mine for the AR family.  20 plus page with photo identification of AR3 how to rebuild looks like somebody is a true beliver/AR Lover.

I am going to repo my AR1's from the daughter for a winter project.

Alan

the Repo Man ............

who?me?

Re: AR3 Speakers Value?? Acoustic Research
« Reply #14 on: 2 Nov 2019, 12:24 am »
The "Thoughts on AR-3 Schematics" article mentions that the crossover/polarity of the drivers changed over the years. If drivers need to be replaced the correct polarity needs to be maintained.

Determining the polarity of a midrange or tweeter used to be very hard but now with smart phones the test is easy.
I have used Polarity Checker for Android and it works great, I changed my old dipole speakers to bipole and the app easily identified which drivers were out of phase.

iPhones can use Speaker Polarity (Speaker Pop)



Watch the videos, the testing method is the same for all apps:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x-W0T1cTjos

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L7EwxmtTDV4

wow. pretty cool. like the tech on Youtube. I tried to post a short video of my electronics for a friend. In the background of the video was music playing. So then YouTUbe IDed the artist, song, album, year, etc and Youtube told me that I was infringing on music copyrights .... all from the phone!