What capacitor would you use to upgrade Wharfedale Linton 85th Anniversary?

I’m going to swap out the generic 6.8uF cap on the tweeter side of the crossover. Wharfedale was very supportive and sent a schematic.

Note: If you have opinions that gear shouldn’t be modified I’m not interested. I can easily swap things in and out seamlessly. Also, my view is that manufacturers have much slimmer margins than we might think. Having built stuff and modified stuff, we experience first hand the choices that engineers and bean counters must make. My sense is that the Linton can be elevated further because of this. And, capacitor swaps can be more influential (and yes, good or bad) than swapping power cords/cables.

The Linton doesn’t do anything wrong. Some might say it’s a sinner of omission? It’s overall smooth, non-fatiguing, and can really keep singing as you push power at it. I wouldn’t mind a touch more air and definition on top--without losing the smoothness.

  • Jantzen Superior Z-Caps?
  • Clarity?
  • Obligato? Man, these are reasonably priced.
  • Auricap? Another smooth, reasonably priced cap.
  • I’d love to try Audyn True Copper Max or VCAPs but that would be pretty pricey.

I’d prefer not to break the bank, which is the problem. I haven’t set a budget or priority for this project. 6.8uF values can get very pricey. So, I suppose it should be kept to less than or equal to $100 per cap. I could be persuaded to do more. :)

Any thoughts?

Calling Erik Squires! @eriksquires ! I know you have some intel here Sir!

All suggestions on caps welcome!

Thanks all!
Well, look at this!  A man in Cologne, Germany has the same thought as me.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nrm803g5n08

At 10:59 he shows a pic of the upgrade. He's using a $10 Clarity cap.  He also swapped out a 2.2R resistor.  Hmmm...can't hurt. Not sure how much it helps. 
I have rebuilt my Apogee Duetta Signature speaker crossover twice. Initially, I used the Mundorf Supreme capacitor with great success and reasonable pricing. A 6,8uF will cost you about $50 USD.

Last month, I went full blast replacing all Supreme capacitors with top-of-the-line Mundorf EVO Supreme Silver/Gold/Oil capacitors. I have reached audio nirvana. A Mundorf 6,8uF SGOil capacitor will set you off at $200 USD. It all depends on what you are ready to spend.

The Mundorf Supreme is really the best bang for the buck. It gets you about 70-75% of the sound of the Mundorf EVO Supreme Silver/Gold/Oil capacitors. But the Mundorf SGOil is the better sounding capacitor....

A better resistor will also help. A few suggestions: Path Audio, Duelund Cast graphite and Duelund Standard graphite. All of these components are available at PartsConnexion.
I have used all the caps you have mention plus many more in my builds, mods and upgrades for me and others. The VH Audio Odams are special and easily rise to the top of the list.  They will deliver significant improvement and please you greatly.  They have a 6.8uf 250v cap offering . No, they are not cheap at just over $100, but they are perfect for what you are wanting to accomplish. 
Nothing to add here except that I heard your speaker at a local dealer last weekend and was completely smitten by them. Good luck with your mods. 
Thank you!  @dasign , I will look at the Mundorf line.  I've used them before with great results.  Does anyone else get annoyed or confused by Mundorf's naming system?  It seems so redundant and yet nuanced. 

@grannyrig, your recs mean a lot.  I love VCAP, so I'll give this consideration.  
Any question of “which capacitor?” that doesn’t include a flux capacitor as an option....
There are a lot of options ,how about resistors to start old mills 
before 2011 , sonic crafts great caps still had silver end caps 
copper leads , a bit better still Path Audio best resistors  out there.
Many variables to consider.I hav3 been modding speakers for 20
yesrs.  Jantzen Alumina are solid  , the best be far are th3 New VH Audio  ODam  caps ,for a poly cap none better and space is something to consider, also buy Jantzen open coil inductors 
night and day better the the cheap sledge hammer type
or plastic bobbin , and rewire it with Quality wire , WBT copper gold connectors ,most gave cheap brass ,and use a Quality solder 
wbt, Cardas or Mundorf , 
Those are all good suggestions but pretty much any good quality film cap will improve the sound of the linton.
@grannyring, I just looked at your system for the first time.  I love that preamp!!!!!!

Swapped out the tweeter caps in my Nola Vipers which were already fitted with Mundorf EVO caps to Mundorf Silver/Gold oil caps and the results were not subtle. 
Go with the best you can afford...
Two capacitor threads in a row!

If you haven't run into it already, humblehifi's capacitor information has always been spot on in my experience.


And boy do they charge you, but Duelund Tinned-Copper CASTs are just wonderful. I've got their 4.7ufs on my Coincident PREs' tweeters and it was a huge upgrade.

It's just crazy how much caps influence the sound.
@nmmusicman I also really enjoyed those caps (used them as pre-amp output capacitors). A little bass shy in that location on my system, but not an issue at all for crossover duties. They have a beautiful, rich, and silky presentation.  Humble hifi said something like "bowling alley depth" and that was so true.
I just purchased a set of these speakers as well. I am also thinking of upgrading the 6.8 uf cap on the tweeter. The Guy in Germany (Mike) from HEADquarter audio used a Jantzen Standard Z and you can hear the difference between the modified and un-modified speakers. People are commenting that it not only improves the smoothness of the tweeter but it improves dynamics and the midrange as well. That Cap is about 8 bucks. After reading the "humblehomeadehifi" test on caps I decided to purchase the   Clarity Cap CSA MKP 250VDC and 630VDC - 5% tolerance.  They were 13 bucks. Once completed I will post my objective results. 

Have to say when I first plugged in the Linton's I was not impressed. The tweeters were really harsh and the bass was boomy. The tweeters got much better after about 10 hours of use and I think they are continuing to get better. The speakers really have to be placed well in the room to get the bass to sound even decent. However I probably have 40 hours on them know and the bass is still improving. I also made a 2 inch platform for the speakers which I believe improves the overall sound from my listening position.  It is a much different sound than my old VMPS RM30 Series II Hybrid Ribbon speakers which they replaced. I had to get use to that difference. And I must say that I like the midrange very much and these speakers are growing on me. I may change more of the crossover parts in the future or I may just be happy with the tweeter upgrade. Not sure I want to change them that much. 

@jbhiller  who did you write to get the crossover schematic?  Would you mind sharing it? I would love to know what value the rest of the parts are before I open it up.
If anyone needs the schematic, PM me.  Already got you mgrissom. 

My Lintons got stuck in a media room.  I can't get them out.  Why?  They are hooked to a $750 Marantz receiver playing television and movies.  That combo is wonderful.  None of that television sound glare or movie track pitchiness plagues me. Just smooooooooth.  But, I feel guilty as they deserve to be in a proper two channel setup.  
Being a former tweaker who used to mod gear, by cap upgrades and etc. I’d leave your Whafedale’s alone. Not to bust on your Marantz receiver, but you may find out by tweaking your speakers they will reveal the shortcomings of your receiver. What’s is your Marantz? I’d have to study the crossover of your Lintons, but how are you sure you shouldn’t tackle the inductors first as that’s where manufacturers cut corners before the caps. Caps for the most part are cheap compared to the inductors. 
Probably get more bang for your buck by buying some decent Hubbell hospital grade receptacles and upgrading the power cable on your Marantz and source components... assuming you haven’t already. If you have your Marantz plugged into a computer or less power surge suppressor, plug it directly into the wall as that will be the best tweak for no money you can do. Are you using the Linton stands? Not sure how the speakers are coupled to the stands, but if they’re just sitting there, use three squares of bluetak per speaker. Good luck and have fun.
Hey adg101,  I agree with you wholeheartedly.  I should've noted that when I say the Lintons got "stuck" hooked to that Marantz it's only because they sounded so great together in a media room. I put the upgrade on hold because the Lintons are serving that duty too well. 

I have a dedicated listening space with Cornwall IVs so I don't need the Lintons in that space any longer.  But if I do move the Lintons to a dedicated listening space at some point, it is then that I'd upgrade them. 

By the way, I have fed the Lintons with the following other more legitimate amps: 

  • Primaluna Dialogue HP
  • Creek EVO 100
  • NAD Masters M22
  • Bob Carver Crimson 275
  • Music Hall Mambo Class A
The Lintons sounded wonderful with each of them. I was, however, a bit taken with how great they sounded with that inexpensive Marantz receiver.  

May I request you to share the Linton crossover schematic with me and the rest, so we could benefit from your correspondence with Wharfedale?

I am in touch with Mike at HEADQuarter Audio, Cologne, Germany and there is also a thread here (https://www.hifivision.com/threads/linton-crossover-upgrade.85749/#post-961789); both of which could benefit from the circuit diagram. Thank you.
Hello everyone, this might be my first forum post but I often exchange PMs and emails with forum members...so just incase I need to introduce myself, this is me, DK, the guy behind computer typing this message and putting a period right here.

Now refer to this link for a screenshot of the elusive Linton schematic as provided by Mofi (the vinyl record people)...they are the distributor for Wharfedale in US and provide technical support (for now).  Also shown is my actual crossover with labels:


The drawing I received was version 14 and I do not have any info about earlier or later versions or why any particular changes were made...WYSIWYG.

Note, there may be differences between the schematic and the values on your own crossover.

For example, my C11 is 80uf vs 68uf on schematic. There could be other differences but I would need to desolder the crossover and measure all components...I'm not ready to do that yet.

For the sake of being able to directly compare the schematic with the actual parts, I put labels that show the schematic values. I did my best to ensure nothing is mislabeled but I can't guarantee it without performing full surgery.

So what am I waiting for? I'm trying to first educate myself on how a crossover works to determine why Wharfedale designed the Linton crossover in the way they did...only then would I want to move forward.

For example, this crossover seems more complicated than it needs to be and I wonder if Wharfy is spoiling the circuit to prevent the Linton (usd$1500) from competing directly with the Elysian 2 (usd$7000), or does the crossover really need to be designed this way to produce the desired sound, or is it both???


I think what is going on with Wharfedale is much simpler than a potential strategic move to keep the Linton from competing with the Elysian.  My theory is that the speaker was built to a price point where they figured out the profit margin they needed on the units and selected parts accordingly.  

While it certainly helps to get better educated before performing a crossover surgery, I would recommend leaving the values and tolerances where they are and upgrading with capacitors and resistors of near identical values/tolerances but with much better product.  That way you stay true to the designer's work on the network.  

I sold mine and haven't been inside the Linton in a long time so I cannot recall how easy the surgery would be. But if it were me, I'd start with upgrading the cap(s) on the tweeter then midrange.  

Also, I saw the forum thread you linked to above.  I saw there was debate about bypassing caps.  I'd softly recommend not doing that and just going for a cap replacement where you think it would help.  A better cap will provide better signal and get out of the way.  Bypassing caps in parallel still leaves the allegedly inferior, inexpensive generic cap in place.  In my humble view, we are generally better off by putting in an identical value better cap than playing the bypass game.  Others believe otherwise though. 

Best of luck! Enjoy the surgery. 
For everyone,
A copy of the Wharfedale Linton Heritage crossover is now posted at HifiEngine:


Hi, thanks again for your help and feedback. I'm in full agreement with your position on a qualitative upgrade but I'm still quite interested hearing what could (should???) be done quantitatively (a change in values or circuitry).

From a quality standpoint, the C3=15uf (mylar) is downstream of the C1=6.8uf and C2=0.68uf (both MKP) and in series with the tweeter so I'm inclined to think the quality C3 is just as important and should directly match the capacitors used at C1-C2...else the C3 limit the goodness provided by an expensive upgrade at C1-C2.

Speaking of expensive, I looked at some prices and a 15uf cap costs nearly double that of a 6.8uf, so if we shelled out $80 for the 6.8uf, we'd be looking at about $150 for the 15uf.

On that point I have to question my thinking about requiring C1+C2+C3 to all be matched, i.e., use Audyn Tri-Reference at all three positions and is it necessary?  Said differently, how much do we give up if we step down in quality (arguable) and price and use, say, a $12 Jantzen Standard Z-cap at C3 but keep Audyn Tri-Ref at C1-C2?

Perhaps the real solution is to recognise the economics of the original design (especially the tweeter and midrange quality) and not waste money going beyond a matched set of Standard or Superior Z-caps at all three positions? But are the drivers really that limited in quality and not worth a Audyn Tri-Ref or ODAM or your favorite/best cap etc???

Or should we upgrade another area of the crossover first, like the inductors?

JB, I surely don't expect you to have answers for me, I'm really asking the community what is the functional importance of C3 and what is the the best practice for upgrading C1, C2, C3 as a whole?

Thanks again and I hope to hear back from you when it's convenient,


Hi, I saw your comments above:

I’d have to study the crossover of your Lintons, but how are you sure you shouldn’t tackle the inductors first as that’s where manufacturers cut corners before the caps. Caps for the most part are cheap compared to the inductors.

To encourage your feedback, I uploaded the Linton schematic on HifiEngine and am asking if you're willing to DL a copy, look it over and tell us what you think?  I also have some comments above.

Thank you,

Full original schematic here (but a little blurry):

Snapshot of schematic and photo of my crossover with nice labels here (both v.clear):

Just Audio's youtube video showing actual crossover at 18:00:

@davekine,  You pose good questions.  I say they are good because you are thinking about it correctly and there are no clear answers.  

Disclaimer--I'm good at spending other peoples money--or so my wife says.  

That out of the way, I'd upgrade as much as you can afford on the mid and treble side of the network.  And, mixing cap makes is fine, but I'd go as good as you can afford.  

For example, I recently did the caps on my Klipsch Cornwall IVs.  I hated the fact that upgrading all caps on the tweeter and midhorn were going to cost me $900 when I included Path Audio resistors (dumping ceramic cast resistors).  But, these are a $6k speaker and I thought they deserve the best.  Don't people spend $900 on speaker cables? 

At any rate, I wouldn't worry as much about inductors for now.  They can have an impact but from what I recall the inductors weren't junk in the W-Dales.  

My two favorite caps right now are VCap ODAMs (like them better than VCap CuTfs, which are stellar in their own right) and ClarityCap CMR.  The ODAMs get the nod against many on sound but when you look at their size you will be happy to install them!

Finally, I really wish I could've heard the Lintons upgraded. They are just a wonderful speaker.  I think they are a hi fi bargain of the last decade.  When the guy who bought mine showed up to pick them up, he couldn't believe how heavy, solid, and beautiful they were for a $1500 speaker with stands.  
Presently using Jupiter VT, Audyn True Copper Max and Dueland Silver bypass in my greatly modded Klipschorns, so much better than Sonic caps. I use Duelund VSF copper in both my bam and crossover in my Merlin VSM. I've used many copper foils and other boutique caps in various projects over the years, pick cap based on sound signature you're looking for.
Hi JB, I'm planning the same upgrade. I recently upgraded the crossovers in a pair of Kef R300s and the results were very good. Basically, upgraded the resistors to Mills wirewounds and replaced the caps with Sonicaps with a Jantzen Alumen Z cap bypass on the tweeter. I've done this type of thing to several speakers and have learned that you have to resist the cap of the month club. When we do this we have unfortunately the limitations of space in the original design. Don't be the guy trying to fit toilet paper roll sized copper foil caps into your speakers. Been there. Done that. However,  just because we have to accept some compromises does not mean we cant have fabulous results!  Measure the spacing and sizes within the crossover and pick out the best caps you can afford "that also fit" with out making it look like a rats nest. I'm personally leaning towards  Solan SA / Mundorf ZN film/foils for C1, C2, C3, C5 and C7. Another nice option is using Mundorf EVO Alum oil for all or just C3, Clartiy cap CSA might be another option. Look at caps under 250v they will be physical smaller then 800v caps and fit better. No they are not Duelund copper foils but still be huge upgrade over the factory caps. Good luck! Please post your progress! I'm a few months away from starting.