Modifications to Spica TC-60

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Modifications to Spica TC-60
« on: 31 Jul 2020, 03:29 am »
For those of you on the fence about DIY tweaking of existing speakers or building from the ground up hope this provides useful information.  Since 1994 enjoying a pair of TC-60 speakers.  They followed the TC-50 that received high praise for excellent imaging.  The TC-60 sported a larger wedge shaped enclosure primarily for a bit more bass.  In 1994 the TC-60 retailed for $795, about $1400 in today's dollars as a point of reference. 

About three months ago embarked on replacement of electrolytic capacitors in all my equipment.  Internet research found the HumbleHomemadeHiFi capacitor review so  speaker crossover first.  Thinking replace electrolytic caps before a problem versus expecting improved sound.  Started with inexpensive Dayton Audio caps.  Film small value bypass caps left in place.  A bit more life in the sound led me back to the Humble capacitor review for study.  He recommended using a CDE 0.01uF as a bypass everywhere possible.  Installed those in the crossover tweeter circuit and the high end was crisp, clean, and clear like never before.  More reading, watching Danny's videos, and hours of listening convinced me to see where more modification would take me.  Started using the XSim program to try different crossover component values and circuit configurations. 

Studied the Humble capacitor review to identify for me the best bang for the buck capacitor.  Settled on the CDE 940C series as the written description was much more positive than the numerical score of 8.5.  Installation of CDE 940C capacitors revealed vocal nuances for the first time in very familiar tracks.  How about inductors and resistors?  Air core inductors and Kiwame resistors the next step.  That modification allowed well recorded tracks to float in the air. 

After more hours of enjoyable listening just a little disappointment with some vocals a bit subdued.  What next?  Received and installed GR Research M165 woofers.  The Peerless woofers removed are metal frame, very heavy magnet, poly cone, rubber surround all in good condition.  The M165 are plastic frame, strudy, about half the magnet weight and smaller diameter voice coil. 

Fortunately the M165 is almost a drop in replacement.  Long term will need a little work, but more than good enough for listening tests.  Initial results are good to quite good.  Vocals previously a bit subdued are now more forward while being very smooth.  Upper bass cleaner with more punch.  The high end sounds more refined, but only changed the woofer.  Initial listening to Eric Clapton, Jennifer Warnes, and Chris Stapleton vocals reveal smoothness and detail that is front and center. 

More listening required to determine if the journey of modification is over.     

Danny Richie

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Re: Modifications to Spica TC-60
« Reply #1 on: 2 Aug 2020, 10:34 pm »
Sounds like you are really having some fun with them now.

Let me know if I can help further.

Thanks for watching the video's.