For sale is a pair of Soundlab A3 fullrange electrostatic speakers in premium cherry wood (real wood) finish, in excellent cosmetic and functional condition. They are pretty big speakers but look beautiful in any room decor (my friends are stunned and impressed by their appearance). Matching pair with consecutive serial numbers.
For full disclosure, there were some holes in both speaker membranes and one tear in the membrane in one of the speaker, probably common with electrostatic speakers of this vintage. The total affected area is very small (about 1 / 30th of the total radiating area). Nonetheless, they used to cause very occasional buzzing. This is now totally fixed. In consultation with Russell Knotts from eslrepair.com and guidance from Soundlab, the tear and holes are patched up to eliminate the buzzing and stabilization added so that there will be no further tearing. The speakers now perform as they should and should be good to go for many more years. The price is adjusted to a small fraction of the original price (a tear is a tear even though it is fixed). They costed more than $9,000 in the 1990's and current versions of the A3 costs more than $29,000, still well worth the cost given the state of the art sound quality.
The Soundlab A3 is the late Gordon Holt's (Stereophile) favourite speakers. He commented on its tonal qualities:
"I would liken it to a superb tubed power amplifier. Though not altogether uncolored—no loudspeaker is—its colorations have a strong personal appeal. The sound is rather warm and rich through the low end, rather rotund and gutsy through the lower middle range, and soft and sweet through the high end. Through its entire range it has the incredible transparency and delicacy that I have only, to date, heard from wide-range electrostatics. It is, in short, my kind of loudspeaker."
He then concluded his stereophile review:
"The A-3s are the most perfect embodiment to date of my ideal loudspeaker system. Never in my life have I lived with a speaker that has brought, and continues to bring, as much pleasure, excitement, and satisfaction. In short, I am madly, passionately in love with their sound..."
I feel the same with these speakers. Driven by my Emotiva XPA-2 amp (they do need a high powered amp), I am simply being captured by the beautiful music produced. The sonic realism, emotional involvement and overall satisfaction is astounding.
The full-range electrostatic design means that the whole frequency spectrum is cut from the same sonic fabric -- with striking coherence, refinement and ultimate level of detail (much superior than Martin Logan's hybrid design). It is literally a full range single driver speaker with a feather-light moving mass. Although not as popular as Quad ESLs, Soundlab speakers are well known among electrostatic aficionados as the speaker the Quad ESLs aspire to be. Indeed, Doug Schoeder in his review (of another Soundlab model) commented that "The Sound Lab does remind me of a Quad, but with a far higher performance level and, in my opinion, more reliability."
Price is firm. This is a great opportunity to acquire a state-of-the-art loudspeaker at an affordable cost. Purchasers of these speakers are well supported by Soundlab as they have a policy that "any product we manufacture can be brought up to the present technical level at a reasonable cost." These speakers are compatible with the new A3PX sound panels.
Local sale only due to size. Transport is relatively straight forward. They fit in a minivan (Dodge Caravan size) with back seats removed.
Thanks for your interest!
A pair of Soundlab A3 speakers, premium cherry wood finish
Re: FOR SALE: Soundlab A3 Electrostatic Speakers in Premium Cherry. Stereophile's Gordon Holt's Referenc
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