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Old 07-06-2012, 12:39 AM
uxwbill's Avatar
uxwbill uxwbill is offline
Lurking in the Shadows
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Illinois
Posts: 1,505
Garrard GSS817 Speakers

Let me start off by saying that I didn't need any more speakers. I have lots of nice speakers.

The area Goodwill stores never have much in the way of speakers. No-name speakers, low power single driver full-range speakers, homemade things that don't look like much, odds and ends of home-theater-in-a-box systems, Panasonic Thrusters...I think you get the idea. I'm in there today, perusing the electronics aisle for something interesting when this pair of speakers caught my eye. The cabinets look really solid. Both grilles are intact and clean. They're branded Garrard and look to be from the 80s. Turning them around revealed a "Garrard International Corp. Edison, NJ" and "Made In Taiwan" notation on the back.

Okay, I thought, maybe they're not that great.

I didn't even come in to buy anything. Well, that was my first mistake.

Picking one of them up gave me pause...ooh, that's nice and heavy. The drivers look to be in good shape. There's a dome tweeter and a decently built woofer, which appears to have been refoamed. 80 watts RMS power handling...hmmm. These are not the typical Goodwill speakers.

I'm not buying these speakers. Tell me I'm not buying these speakers.

What's the price? $13 and whatever sales tax was. Okay, I bought the speakers. For that kind of money it seemed very hard to go wrong. And this is what I got. They are "sticky" to the touch and could use a good cleaning. Someone also drove hooks into the backs in order to hang them from the wall. I'll have to fix that later. (All pictures are "clickable" to see them larger.)

They're about sixteen inches tall I'd say. Bookshelf sized. This is what they look like when the grilles are off.

Crossover board:


Woofer: (my digital camera was acting up during this shot)

Neither driver has any sort of identifying information printed on it, not even a wattage rating or EIA code. They are blank.

Rear label:

Upon getting them home, I hooked them up to a Harman/Kardon hk440 Vxi receiver and gave them a few hours worth of listening while playing a live web stream. I'm pretty impressed so far. The sound seems pretty well balanced between highs and lows. If anything, they're a just a little on the bright side, while bass is present but not overpowering. Cranking up the bass or applying a loudness equalization curve does boost their bass output rather considerably, though it never became boomy. Bass output stays pretty tight and clean.

All in all they seem to be very decent speakers.

Searching the web didn't turn up much, other than a few of these speakers turning up for sale at surplus outlets over time. Has anyone got any information on them?
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Old 07-06-2012, 08:28 AM
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Celt Celt is online now
Jingle Dawg
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Paragould, Arkansas
Posts: 36,382
Look like prefectly decent little speakers. I'd upgrade the caps to a decent film type by Dayton or Jantzen.

Let me live in the house beside the road and be a friend to man.
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Old 07-06-2012, 08:58 AM
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baco99 baco99 is online now
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Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Boston, MA
Posts: 6,504
My first job was as a sales person at the Sight & Sound dept for Service Merchandise. (remember them?) We sold Garrard. IMO, they were "ok" as compared to some of the other stuff on the shelf: Sony, Pioneer, Cerwin Vega, Bose, and KLH. They were our "house brand" competitor to Advent at the time.
MAINS: KEF 104/2, NAD 1700, TAD Hibachi Mono Blocks, Pioneer DPR-609, Pioneer PL50A, Ortofon 2M Blue
OFFICE: Morel Duet, NAD 1600, NAD 2400, NAD C660, TEAC W-790R
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Old 07-06-2012, 01:59 PM
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audiomagnate audiomagnate is offline
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Location: Western Slopia, Colorado
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1st order on the woofer and 2nd order on the tweet. They look pretty well thought out and the parts look good too.
Sources:Kromecaster Hi-Rez Streamer, RT-707, Garrard RC88/4 w/ GE VRII
Control:Gemini CX-1000
Amps:Nak PA-7 (mains), BGW 620B x 3(subs, tweets and surrounds)
Speakers:JBL L200+
Subwoofers:Swarm of three
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