Altec Lansing® is joining the movement to revive and re-issue classic audio gear. This one really is a blast from the past: Altec has reintroduced the legendary A7 sound reinforcement loudspeaker, also known as the “Voice of the Theatre®.”
The new reproduction is named Legacy A7, and Altec is positioning it as an esoteric item for audiophiles and collectors who appreciate classic audio, as well as for the pro audio and studio applications filled by the original A7.
The Legacy A7 is available direct from Altec Lansing online, priced at $4,000 (US) per speaker, plus $300 (US) each for shipping. It is available immediately.
Altec Lansing’s “Voice of the Theatre” was the first and only speaker series to be approved by the Research Council of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, making it the worldwide standard for motion picture playback. Introduced in the early 1950’s, the A7 was the pinnacle of the “Voice of the Theatre” line, defining an era of sound reproduction for movie theaters, recording studios, even rock groups lasting nearly 40 years.
The A7 was the culmination of Altec’s Voice of the Theatre line. It was soon in demand for use as a studio monitor and home reproducer. Over the years, the A7 established itself as an almost universal standard against which engineers and audio lovers judged the quality of recorded sound.
Altec Lansing says the new Legacy A7 is a meticulous re-issue of this classic speaker, precise in every engineering detail and offered in the most refined cabinetry the speaker has ever seen.
“The new A7 is a meticulous re-issue of our original product,” says Mark Lucas, president and CEO of Altec Lansing Technologies.
“Every detail, every specification is based on historic research and painstaking design analysis. For anyone from vacuum tube amplification fans to modern-day digital system lovers, the new A7 is a piece of history they can enjoy right in their own music room or home theater.”
For many audio engineers and other discriminating audio lovers, the A7’s unique sound was unmistakable: completely memorable, and totally unique. It quite probably has become the most listened-to speaker system in the world, thrilling millions of theater goers and others over its long and distinguished reign.
Manufactured in the USA using the same materials, the same specs and production drawings, even the same tools used in the original product, the A7 is once again ready to grace the homes and studios of consumers and other collectors who can appreciate an audio classic.
Nothing has been left to chance in the re-issue of the A7. In fact, the company’s Golden Sample – the product “mother” upon which all manufacturing is based – was acoustically matched to an original A7 to ensure the distinctive “Voice of the Theatre” sound is re-created in its full expression.
Boasting outstanding efficiency as well as incredibly dynamic and accurate performance, the A7 features a number of components that were breakthroughs in the field. The product’s low frequency Model 515 Lansing(R) woofer, for example, is specifically designed to maximize the performance of the A7’s bass horn cabinet, and was one of the industry’s first drivers to use an edge-wound, copper-clad aluminum ribbon voice coil. Flat wire coils are a cornerstone of accuracy and efficiency, and were originally developed in 1924 by the group of Western Electric engineers who went on to found Altec Lansing. The Model 902 high frequency compression driver, also a part of the A7, features a 100% aluminum diaphragm for extended high frequency performance.
In some ways, performance of the A7 has actually been improved. Frequency response in the new product is now 35 Hz to 22 kHz (the first A7 achieved 20 kHz, generally regarded as the limit of human hearing); the crossover, while a match of the original, uses better components and techniques to accommodate modern media such as SACD or DVD-A.
Housing the A7’s drivers is an individually-numbered speaker cabinet constructed of 13-layer Baltic Birch, finished with the signature “Voice of the Theatre” black splatter finish. The durable, acoustically refined enclosures are handmade to the highest modern standards.
More Features & Details
- Perfect for the vacuum tube amplification lover or enthusiasts of the latest digital amplification technology – anyone who appreciates the benefits of truly classic audio engineering.
- The A7 drivers contain powerful magnetic structures, precisely spaced magnetic gaps and optimal material selections.
- Model 515 LF driver features edgewise wound copper-clad aluminum ribbon wire in its voice coil. Model 902 HF driver uses copper ribbon wire. Flat wire voice coils, a cornerstone of accuracy and efficiency, have been used by Altec longer than anyone else.
- Incredibly dynamic and accurate… the new Voice of the Theatre effortlessly achieves performance that will move you.
- Only the finest American made components were qualified for the latest A7.
- The 902 HF driver uses the Altec Tangerine™ Radial Phase Plug.
- Hydraulically formed aluminum HF diaphragm with tangential compliance.
- Durable, sonically excellent 13-layer Baltic Birch plywood cabinet, manufactured to the highest modern standards.
- Combinations of the bass reflex and horn enclosure offer proven superior quality in sound reproduction. The advantages of the extended bass response of the bass reflex enclosure, coupled to a short, radiating exponentially formed front loaded horn without folds, further extends the low bass range.
- Completed with a Voice of the Theatre rugged black splatter finish.
- Careful attention to the smallest details, capturing all the sonic excitement that made the original a legend.
- Altec Lansing relied on original cabinet drawing.
- Drivers and sectoral horns are cast off of original Altec Lansing tools.
- Altec’s Golden Sample was acoustically matched to an original A7. All of our efforts were focused on achieving the same signature sound for which The Voice of the Theatre is famous.