AR vs. Advent

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by Moon_Man, Aug 25, 2010.

  1. Moon_Man

    Moon_Man Dreps Crone Maze Subscriber

    I'm sure this has been bantered around in here before, but here I go anyway - I'd like peoples opinions.

    I currently own a very nice pair of AR 2ax's that sound great (I am a fan of the vintage east coast sound). I also have an opportunity to pick up a pair of original Advent Loudspeakers which look good save for some funky brown grill cloth (that I would replace).

    My question is this - are these so similar so as to be redundant? I know both of these are Henry Kloss creations. I will probably get the Advents only because "they're there", but I'd like some opines. Thanks.
  2. tmad40blue

    tmad40blue "I can hear forever!" Subscriber

    The AR-2ax is not a Henry Kloss design - he left AR way before that and had already started KLH.

    I say get them! The more experience you have with different vintage speakers, the better. I've got AR-3a, AR-4x, AR-2, etc., and would LOVE to hear some Advents myself.
  3. nickv41

    nickv41 New Member

    You cant go wrong with Advents. I have a pair of original large advents, new large advents and a pair of advent heritage that I use as mains on my ht setup. I wouldnt part with them.
  4. JohnVF

    JohnVF Banned

    They're different. In my opinion (hey, you said you like other's opinions!) if you want a similar sound that's a bit farther along in it's evolution, get the Boston Acoustics A-150 instead of the Advents. It was designed by the guy who did the New Large Advent (Andy Petit?), and I think he did a fantastic job with it. There's nothing really extraordinary about just sounds good. But I never cared for Advents so your mileage may vary. I like the AR-2ax I had, in light of what I had at the time.
  5. mfhale

    mfhale New Member

    I'm with tmad40blue...get them and try them out.

    Like you, I'm a fan of the East Coast sound and really liked Advents in particular...until they were dethroned recently by a pair of KLH Model Six.
  6. 2chanman

    2chanman New Member

    If they are the original Advent, they must have been refoamed. Verify that his was done properly or professionally. They may even not have the original woofers. I have seen Advents that were mutilated beyond reclamation by incompetent "repair". Also, the original tweeters weren't much to write home about.
  7. Moon_Man

    Moon_Man Dreps Crone Maze Subscriber

    Yes, of course your right about Kloss.

    The pics I've seen of the Advents certainly look like they are original (save for the foam) including the masonite-ringed woofie.

    I've been talking to the owner and he's one of us - he's got collector's fever. So I am not too concerned that these have been "improved upon".
  8. Zilch

    Zilch Curve Junkie Subscriber

    "Evolution" is correct, but the fried egg tweeter is "a total underperformer compared with modern designs," according to Stereophile's John Atkinson, who measured them in Smaller Advents four years ago. Thus, large Advents are well-known not only as AudioKarma's most owned and most loved loudspeaker (largely, in my view, because they are universally available for chump change) as well as slam-dunk upgrade candidates:

    You are comparing a 2- versus 3-way here. I have no data on AR2ax other than that provided by David Smith (yes, THAT David Smith) on the Classic Speaker Pages forum, which pretty much defines what they are:

    See also:

    [Henry had a secret.... :tongue: ]
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2010
  9. ddragg1

    ddragg1 New Member

    I have AR3a's, AR2a's and AR4ax's. How do these compare with my original large Advents and original smaller Advents? I like the Advents because you dont need as much power to drive them. The large Advents are a teriffic sounding two way design. In fact, you would think they were a 3 way design because of how well rounded they sound. Same goes for the smaller Advents. Do they sound better than the AR's? I think for rock music they do, but for jazz and acoustic music the AR's get my vote. I haven't recapped either pairs, so that could make a difference. I would say get them if the price is good.
  10. Grainger49

    Grainger49 Old Fart Subscriber

    Zilch, it was years ago but I sold both. I think the AR 2 series is a two way, the AR 3 a three way, but the AR 4 is a two way so there is no rhyme or reason to the numbers that I know of. We all know the Advent is a 2 way.

    The Advent Loudspeaker, as it was called, was Henry Kloss' baby. He had wanted to build it for KLH but was made to design the KLH 5 instead. I toured the "factory" and it was insane! The fried egg started life in the toe of pantyhose. Impressive manufacturing techniques. Yes, I'm a fan but the two speakers are enough different the OP should decide for himself.
  11. robobxman

    robobxman Roll me away tonight...

    I think the Advents are more versatile than the AR2ax's - in line with what ddrag said. But AR2ax's can be magic w/ jazz and vocals if placed correctly. I had mine on shelves and it made a big difference.
  12. Nat

    Nat AK Subscriber Subscriber

    I like both, but it seems to me that the Advent, with its tweeter flush with the grill and its oddball 8 inch cone/12 inch basket does surprisingly better than you might expect with polar response and imaging -- the AR ought to be better, but I'm not sure it is. On the other hand, the enclosures of ARs, especially early ones, are stouter and less resonant. And then there are the dreaded AR pots which are right up there with death and taxes for inevitable unhappiness. But then again, the ARs are just better looking -- the bullnose Advents are handsome, but the proportions aren't as good as the AR, and AR grill cloth is much nicer.
  13. audiojones

    audiojones Jonesin' for audio Subscriber

    You are partially correct - the AR2 was indeed a 2 way, but the AR2a and AR2ax were 3 way designs. The 2ax was the improved version of the AR2a and was introduced in 1964.

    Anyway, all that aside - I also have and enjoy the AR3a, AR2ax, and KLH Twenty-Three to name a few. However, upon discovering The Smaller Advent Loudspeaker as it is formally named, I have to say that I am in love with the Advents and currently own 3 pair that see quite a bit of use. Personally I like both the orange and green tweeters quite a bit, and I sure wouldn't want it any brighter than it is. To my ears it sounds very balanced and the bass response is unbelievable for a speaker of it's modest size. It is a shame that the only cabinet option is the cheesey walnut grain contact paper, but the important thing is that they sound excellent (IMHO). I have no experience with the Larger Advent Loudspeaker but I'd say go for it. I wish that I had found out about the Small Advent sooner!
  14. Isotonic

    Isotonic A Delicious Avocado Subscriber

    I like the Smaller Advent too. Very balanced all around speaker. The tweeter can get a little harsh.
  15. asoundhound

    asoundhound Definitely Low-fi

    i've got original large advents, new large advents, ar 2a's and a pair of each version of the 2ax's.

    it's apples and oranges. both the advents and the ar's have their strengths and weaknesses. but there is really not much similar about them.
  16. blhagstrom

    blhagstrom Mad Scientist, fixer. Subscriber


    Ah, another Heritage owner. Love mine, they will never leave home.

    Yes, get the Large Advents. I have the Large and the 4x and they are both great and yet different. Worth having both.
  17. ddragg1

    ddragg1 New Member

    The smaller Advent. What an ugly mutha, but what a nice sound. They sound as good as the large Advents to my ears. Audiojones is correct in his assessment on the sound quality. Like Nat says about the AR's. The pots are a big downfall. Another thing is that each speaker may sound better with different amplifications. Try an "A" class amp with the AR's and I think you'll really hear the differences between the two. I have a friend that has a pair of LST's driven with a Mac 2150 and they sound incredible. Get'um, try'um, don't like'um, sell'um........
  18. Isotonic

    Isotonic A Delicious Avocado Subscriber

    That's the game! :tresbon:
  19. Houas07tc

    Houas07tc AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Get them and do an A & B comparison and report back.
  20. RadShak1251

    RadShak1251 New Member

    Generally speaking, in my experience I've found that when comparing Advents to Acoustic Research, the Advents were: more lively (brighter with punchier bass); required less power for the same volume level; and many ARs have 4 ohm (or lower!) impedance ratings which can be an issue for less-powerful amps. Yes the Smaller Advent is rated at 4 ohms - actually the only Advent I personally know of with that rating - but I don't see nearly as many complaints about amp issues with the S.A. than I do with the ARs w/lower impedance ratings (there is more to an impedance rating than just 8,6,4 etc. so some low-impedance speakers are much easier to drive than others).

    When Stereophile tested that pair of Smaller Advents, the same pair with the sloppily repaired woofer :( (the pics show this clearly), unless my memory is really screwed up there was no mention of the crossover being recapped...and seeing that woofer makes me believe it wasn't the tweeters' output may have not been what it should have been.

    Btw that tweeter design, in other words, the donut shape, has been making a bit of a comeback lately (it was also used in the first 3-way Advent, the 6003, in the form of a 5" ferrofluid cooled polypropylene midrange driver). Pioneer for example is using it in some of their better automotive speakers and more and more tweeters are using a "mild" form of it like this new Vifa 1" dome design. And not while not exactly a donut :), ring radiator tweeters seem to share some attributes of it, like these.

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