Question Tweeter Upgrade for TDL RTL3 Floorstanding Speakers ?

shotokan101

Banned
Hi - I've been giving my TDL RTL3 (pretty old but I love them most of the time) some critical listening recently and I now think that the high frequencies are a bit too bright/harsh when listening to Music - fine for Home Cinema use though.

So - having qoogled upgrade options I only fins a few references to upgrading the tweeters - "supertweeter " unist get mentioned from Wilmslow Audio but dated back 2008/2009 - so can anyone recommend a more modern tweeter upgrade unit that won't require much cabinet modification - preferably a straight remove-replace-screw into same holes option without needing to modify any internal crossover circuit boards - and of course at a reasonable cost. :)

Jim
 

shotokan101

Banned
I've emailed Wilmslow Audio to see if they can suggest a tweeter upgrade that's easy to fit.

Jim
 

D.D.D.

Active Member
high frequencies are a bit too bright/harsh when listening to Music - fine for Home Cinema use though.
Jim, if tweeter is working, then you do not need to change it.
First what you can do is check crossover components, if capacitors for tweeters are died (short), that could be the reason for too bright sound.

Another option - modify crossover.
Replace capacitors to some good ones (but not too expensive), important one is serial capacitor to tweeter, capacitor in bass section - if it is alive, you can leave it as it is.

And you can do some attenuation for tweeter like here:
TDL RTL Rebuild - Crossover and Measurements
or instead of l-pad you can add capacitor in parallel to tweeter - some 0.47...2.2uF, try several values and listen which one you like more.

Very good if you can do some measurements with microphone before and after.
 

shotokan101

Banned
Jim, if tweeter is working, then you do not need to change it.
First what you can do is check crossover components, if capacitors for tweeters are died (short), that could be the reason for too bright sound.

Another option - modify crossover.
Replace capacitors to some good ones (but not too expensive), important one is serial capacitor to tweeter, capacitor in bass section - if it is alive, you can leave it as it is.

And you can do some attenuation for tweeter like here:
TDL RTL Rebuild - Crossover and Measurements
or instead of l-pad you can add capacitor in parallel to tweeter - some 0.47...2.2uF, try several values and listen which one you like more.

Very good if you can do some measurements with microphone before and after.

Thanks for that @D.D.D. - never really thought about the crossover possibly actually being faulty and the tweeters OK - though I had been wondering about a crossover upgrade as maybe a next step :blush:

I'll have read through that link - thanks for that :cool:

When you suggest taking mesasurements with a microphone - what would I be connecting the microphone to - audio in on a PC and some audio s//w package?

Jim
 
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shotokan101

Banned
Thanks for that @D.D.D. - never really thought about the crossover possibly actually being faulty and the tweeters OK - though I had been wondering about a crossover upgrade as maybe a next step :blush:

I'll have read through that link - thanks for that :cool:

When you suggest taking mesasurements with a microphone - what would I be connecting the microphone to - audio in on a PC and some audio s//w package?

Jim

@D.D.D. - any update please ?

Also - I've seen a few web links mentioning "taming" the RTL3 tweeter by adding two resistors to he crossover to act as an "Lpad" - e.g. link below

TDL RTL Rebuild - Crossover and Measurements

can anyone tell me if the two resistors RP1 and RP2 are actually 1 Ohm and 10 Ohm respectively ?
 

007L2Kill

Well-known Member
Hi mate! I remember when I had my RTL 3 in rosewood I think it was 1998 around about and these was one of my first speakers I upgraded the hell out of it as I loved there bass they gave, if memory serves I think I went OTT with these and sadly blowed the tweeters with a clipping amp, how you learn, compare me to now I am a old fart lol!:)

Best upgrade what changed the sound for the better was the internal wiring as the stuff in side gives a nasty harsh sound, I hard wired the crossover and remember putting some massive caps as replacements just about fitted into the cab. Made the speaker more warmer fuller with a smooth treble.

As for your questions that never got answered,:rolleyes: the measurements with a microphone would be REW software and a compatible mic which would be a UMIK-1 from minidsp, but you could use a SPL meter, but not so good for mid to treble frequencies.

The remodeled filter mod I just looked over it and would be very easy to make and you have nothing to lose in making just one up and comparing to the original one side by side and if it does sound better then you don’t need any measurement software or mic as its been already done.

The two resistors RP1 and RP2 are 1 ohm and 10 ohm respectively.

Keep the thread updated as you will have to let me know how they sound with the mod!

Happy modding! :thumbsup:
 
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shotokan101

Banned
Hi there - thanks for the useful info - much appreciated :)

FYI - Wilmslow Audio recommended the fllowing tweeter replacement/upgrade

Scanspeak Classic D2008 8512

I think I'll try the crossover twek first and have a look at the wiring and see how it sounds

Jim
 

007L2Kill

Well-known Member
No problems mate, happy to help!

The Scanspeak tweeter looks very good for a replacement as it does have a rear chamber which the TDL one does not, so the tweeter will sound VERY different if that’s a good thing or not.

One thing is if you replace the tweeters you would really have to have the measurement software and the MIC as I said above and that will set you back all together over £120 or a lot more as the DB output from the new tweeter and crossover points on how it acts with the bass drivers to get it leveled out.

To me with the cost involved you could buy a new pair of speakers and if the tweeters are working fine now (as I remember them being very powerful so very easy to know if they not) you could just do the crossover upgrade and should not cost that much.

When I get some time I will add up the cost of the upgrade and see how much it comes up to.
 

shotokan101

Banned
"Ouch! Ouch! Ouch!" :eek: ;)

I asked the guys at Wilmslow if I would need to modify the crossover with the new tweeters and he said not necessary.... :confused:
 

007L2Kill

Well-known Member
If the guy said that then it should be OK, its just that the tweeter is very different with a rear chamber and what seems to be a very slight horn loading to the front dome.

Just found the original tweeters PDF file ( D20TD-05-06 - Tymphany ) and it seems the tweeter is 89db at 6ohms and the replacement one is 90db at 8ohms, so very different, but as a lot better spec, what you could do is if you do go down the replacement route you could just get a SPL meter and make sure the new tweeter is the same level as the old one, it may happen the new tweeter would be lower due to being 8 ohms, how much by is anybody’s guess, but would be the same effect as putting the l-pad in the crossover for the old tweeter.

I looked at hifi collective where I get all my parts from and I can’t find the coils used in the design, I think who ever wrote it down as put too many zeros in the numbering for the components, so can’t be 100% sure for the coils. So if I was you just get your hand on two resistors and solder them in to one speaker crossover as they are and compare and if you like what you here then replace the caps and the internal wiring and that would make the speaker 100% better!:smashin:
 

shotokan101

Banned
Thanks for the additional info - I'll have a look over on HiFi Collective or Wilmslow for some replacement Caps and resistors and take it from there - if I decide to replace the internal wiring is there any particular wire the you would recommend ? - seem to remember some comments about silver coated copper not working very well...

Jim
 

007L2Kill

Well-known Member
Not a problem! Regarding the cable, sliver based cable can have a uplifted image which does make the soundstage bigger, but that only works with expensive sliver based cable as the cheaper stuff like QED sounds harsh which I can’t stand, the stuff I use which funny enough I am fitting to my speakers in the next few weeks as I am tweaking yet again is Chord Odyssey 2 which is lively but no harshness at all.

But you are trying to tame the treble and may not work so good, I remember trying too many cables in my RTL3 and funny enough one of the cheaper cables I tried it loved and really worked a treat and that was IXOS gamma speaker cable really balanced out the sound, here is one that is still available IXOS XHS606W Gamma Geometry Speaker Cable - FutureShop.co.uk should cost no more than £15 really worth it, you may find that just updating the old cable without the resistors may work for you.
 

shotokan101

Banned
Thanks for that - pretty cheap too - also considering changing out the current speaker cable and biwiring them as well (bug bites deep eh ?) but obviously don't want to change too much all at once - probably a good idea to get the boxes open soon to give the crossovers a good visual inspection in case anything's blown etc. and will get an idea of how easy/difficult access is to do the internal cable rewiring and crossover mods.

From your experience what order would you recommend staging the mods in ?

Thanks again

Jim

PS anything that doesn't involve spending £200 on that Mic/Processor option better be right at the top of the list unless I start offering this modding as a service when I retire.... :devil:

Also regarding the crossover mods - the pull down mod and swapping out capacitors etc. - any particular brands/types you would recommend ?
 

007L2Kill

Well-known Member
Well, I would start with the cable upgrade first as the cable inside is way to thin for the bass drivers what I can remember, plus the tweeter cap being run of the mill 10p can caps and they start to drift when they get old and they be coming to 20 years old now, so it may be what you hearing, problem I remember was that they need a 6uf cap and no one does that still today, so means adding up on the caps yourself in parallel.

Well, I do like ICW CAPS to be honest as they do have a smooth sound and that is what I used in the TDL it was a SA 6uf 630v had them specially made by ICW for myself and before I sold my RTL 3 I removed them, so may have them around somewhere, I will look tomorrow and if I find them you can have them if you don’t mind paying the postage, will check tomorrow.

The icw caps are large so will take some solder and DIY skills I did remove the board as it was easier to mount the parts to the plastic cover and hard wire the components together.

What I remember there is a 10 watt resister in there that burned out easy, but only if it was played at high levels for a long time.

So, first do the cables, remove all drives and carefully de solder the wires, be VERY careful with the tweeter, once that is done then remove crossover and the wires will just pull free, then you can start on the crossover board, remove wires, but first just take a picture of the board how it is just in case you get in a pickle, then I would replace tweeter cap and bass cap if you can and resistor with new ones, but keep the coils for now, and then measure the new cable against the old and cut to length, then strip and solder to board or if hard wired to the components, then label some part of the cable with LF, HF so when you rethread the wire back into the case you do not connect the LF wire to the tweeter, then re solder carefully back on to drivers.

It will not add up to much I could get everything for under £30 or less, its just the hard work that goes with it, but I have to admit I do enjoy it as at the end if it’s a good upgrade tweak it gives a good smile to your face.

Using the same cable on the outside as bi-wired will give best results!

Look forward to your impressions when you get them done.:thumbsup:
 

shotokan101

Banned
Great - thanks for the heads up on the rewiring process - much appreciated.

If you've got the old Caps kicking around I'd be pleased to give your old caps a new home and more than happy to pay for them and postage of course.

Thanks again

Jim
 

007L2Kill

Well-known Member
Sorry Jim for the delay getting back to you as I had my boiler serviced and they concluded that it was unsafe and disconnected it and I am without heating and I have my elderly mother living with me, so been trying to sort it out, but they was meant to fit the new boiler today, but been pushed to next week, the fun.

Anyway, I found the caps and they was still in the box I placed them in and they yours if you still going ahead with the upgrade to your speakers, plus if you don’t mind my surname on the caps as ICW printed on them there selves.

Send me a PM and I get them posted Tuesday when I go to the post office.:smashin:

Mike.:)
 

shotokan101

Banned
No problem - I've only just ordered my speaker wire for the internal rewiring.

Sorry to hear about your problems - just as the cold spell is coming in too - bloody typical :(

I'll PM you my work delivery address and you can let me know the payment detail in return.

Many thanks

Jim
 

shotokan101

Banned
Mike - your inbox is full :)

Jim
 

VaioVamp

Standard Member
Lol, I'm just about to do the same with my rtl3 s. I think a woofer has gone in one of mine, was going to talk to wilmslow audio but this thread has persuaded me to try diy. I'll rewire them, spec out a better crossover, replace the woofer as a pair, and look to change the tweeter if the sound doesn't improve. All in that order. It'll take me a while but I'll try to post the results on here.
 

007L2Kill

Well-known Member
Lol, I'm just about to do the same with my rtl3 s. I think a woofer has gone in one of mine, was going to talk to wilmslow audio but this thread has persuaded me to try diy. I'll rewire them, spec out a better crossover, replace the woofer as a pair, and look to change the tweeter if the sound doesn't improve. All in that order. It'll take me a while but I'll try to post the results on here.
Good on you!:smashin: I did not know that the woofers was still available? I think I had a spare one of these 15 years ago, god only knows if I still have that, if I get time after my boiler is fitted, so I can feel my hands and feet lol! I have a look for it.
 

VaioVamp

Standard Member
After replacing the surround on one of the speakers in a squeezebox boom, I feel I can achieve anything, lol. I don't suppose there are any existing woofers left, I'd get the ones from wilmslow audio. They do a kit of the rtl3! So it must have garnered quite a following. The kit, all built, is around £900!!! That's a new boiler! :)
 

Vinny1972

Novice Member
Hi All
New member here. I'm Van from near Bournemouth.
I've had a pair of RTL3s since 1996 and late last year started thinking I might get something new. I then decided against this and started looking at possible upgrades. I changed the capacitors for poly ones from Falcon, and asked them about tweeters but got no reply. Choice is a bit limited as the tweeters are only 94mm diameter. Scanspeak D2008 is 92mm so that would fit. Might need some filing out inside but I don't want to have to mess around with the fronts. I had another search on the net the other day and found this thread. Wondered if you guys had changed your RTL3 tweeters yet, what you used and what you think of them?
Cheers
Van
 

shotokan101

Banned
Yes - as noted above Wilmslow recommended the Scanspeack as a suitable replacement to me

Scanspeak Classic D2008 8512

But as it turned out I didn't need to replace the tweeters (which save a lot of money) - I simply rep;laced the Caps in the crossovers and rewired the internal wiring with thsi stuff

IXOS XHS606W 15AWG 1.7mm Audio Cable per metre

Both of which incrementally improved the tweeter performance (to my ears) and tamed the sometimes a little OTT high end

Jim
 

Vinny1972

Novice Member
Thanks for the quick reply Jim.
I was surprised how thin the internal wiring was, but haven't done anything with this yet.
There's a few little things I've done.
I've read some stuff about increasing the resistor across the mid/bass drivers to increase the midrange and therefore make them sound less bassy. I have quite a boomy living room where I am now and increased this from 10 to 12 ohms and it seems to help.
The other thing I've done - they have a few chips in the veneer which annoy me. So when I found a set of 3 "Magic furniture scratch markers" pens in my local cheap shop for £1 I thought they would be worth a go but probably too watery. The darkest of the 3 is a really good match for the rosewood and only needs 1 coat - you have to be really close to see. Doesn't affect the sound of course but made me feel good as I do like to keep things going/improve them rather than replace.
Van
 

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