anyone ever heard of "ESS" speakers?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Chris Brown, Oct 31, 2002.

  1. Chris Brown

    Chris Brown Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2002
    Messages:
    178
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Real Name:
    -
    I have a pair of bookshelf speakers that have an “ESS” emblem on the front (see picture below). Has anyone ever heard of these before? They are in great condition except on the back there is a big hole on both cabinets… almost like there used to be a passive radiator there before. Inside there is sound dampening material with little chunks of what looks like old pieces of speaker surround foam (which supports my passive radiator theory). Not sure what the deal with the missing passive radiator or whatever on the back is, but if I could find out a little about this brand maybe that would be a start?
    [​IMG]
    Thanks.
     
  2. Chris Brown

    Chris Brown Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2002
    Messages:
    178
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Real Name:
    -
    Well I was getting bummed about not having a digital camera, but then I realized… their bookshelf speakers, why don’t I just put the darn things on the scanner! [​IMG]
    http://www.GotNoRice.com/essfront.jpg
    http://www.GotNoRice.com/essback.jpg (notice the chunks of old speaker surround foam)
    The surrounds on the woofer are rubber, and thus do not suffer from foam rot.
     
  3. Ben_wood

    Ben_wood Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2002
    Messages:
    234
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I seem to remember that ESS speakers used a Heil-designed tweeter in some of their products. They were considered fairly good speakers in their time (late 70's I believe).
     
  4. Ken D.

    Ken D. Extra

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2002
    Messages:
    17
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    http://www.essspeakers.com
    I remember seeing those in a product brochure a long time ago, but I can't remember the model #. That's definately the remains of a passive radiator. Give them a call and find out what they are. If you do call 'em please post a follow up, 'cause you peaked my curiousity.
    Edit: That's kind of funny now that I looked twice...the radiator isn't in a basket that can be removed via screws...it's embedded into the cabinet. Also is there a S/N plate or label anywhere on the speaker?
     
  5. DanaA

    DanaA Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2001
    Messages:
    1,843
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I heard their speakers many times, but the floorstanding ones, not bookshelf speakers. If I recall correctly, the Heil tweeters were supposed to move air much quicker than conventional tweeters. Federated, a chain back then, at least in California, used to feature them. A friend had some until his house, and the speakers, burnt down. I, probably in the mid-70's really wanted a pair because I did like their sound. Surprised to see Ken's link. I thought the company went out of business quite a while back.
     
  6. Chris Brown

    Chris Brown Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2002
    Messages:
    178
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Real Name:
    -
    Well seems the company is famous for these special tweeters, which my speakers don't seem to have anyway...

    Is it even worth it to try and seek out a replacement passive radiator?
     
  7. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 1999
    Messages:
    6,123
    Likes Received:
    40
    Trophy Points:
    6,610
    Location:
    Katy, TX
    Real Name:
    Wayne
    Ess -That's a name I haven't heard in years. Like Dana, I thought they were long gone.

    Definitely some interesting speakers on their web site. I thought it was strange to see a two-way speaker with a tweet and 12”, until I looked at the specs. The tweeter crosses over at – are you sitting down? – 800Hz!

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     
  8. Ken D.

    Ken D. Extra

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2002
    Messages:
    17
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    The Monitor series or AMT series have to be heard to believe the amount of detail these speakers provide in the midrange to upper frequencies. I was hooked on the Heil air motion transformer the minute I heard them. I've owned my AMT 1a's for 20 years and have had a hard time listening to other speakers. I'm always listening for the details in the music (symbol crashes, fingers dragging on strings with electric guitar, etc.) The low frequency response is no slouch either. The bass is tight and loud, even after 20 years and 7 different amplifiers. IMO there's only one con to the Heil system...the magnets on those suckers are so strong you can't get them anywhere near a TV, computer, or god forbid someone wearing a gigantic belt buckle.

    Back to the subject...I don't think there's any good reason to try and restore unless someone knows an easy way to build a passive radiator or perhaps buy one in a basket. Then the back could be routed out to fit the basket. If it were a set of Monitors or AMT's, then the radiator could be replaced rather easily...although not cheaply.
     
  9. BrianLund

    BrianLund Auditioning

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2002
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    To back up what Ken D. said in 1974 I purchased a set of AMT 4's and they sound as sweet today as they ever have. The Air Motion Transformer produces highs so crisp they sizzle when they need to. For years my reference standard to hear these is Elton John's Love Lies Bleeding. Incredible recording and just the thing to show off the AMT's. I have no experience with the bookshelf models but as Ken says if they were AMT's they would definately be worth restoring.
     
  10. IraSWeiss

    IraSWeiss Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2001
    Messages:
    57
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I remember hearing AMT1's back in the 70's and I also could not believe the detail in the mid-high end. I always wondered why others didn't pick up on the design.
     

Share This Page