Who uses ADS Speakers

I worked at ADS in The late 70s and Find they are one of the best home speakers ever.

I always loved their accuracy.


I believe @rauliruegas does or at least did for many years in a spectacular system. Cheers,


Yes, I got a pair of L710's about 1980. I always enjoyed them. I recently had the tweeters replaced and gifted the pair to my daughter and son-in-law for Christmas.

Dear @bstbomber : Thank’s @sbank . Yes, I’m a proud owner of a pair of L-2030 ADS Monitors.

ADS made extraordinary loudspeakers and in the L-2030 was ADS directly whom build the speaker drivers that are just unique and as you said accurated not analitycal but with high accuracy that’s need it in the professional recording studios.


In those old times Telarc LP manufacturer used an ADS special speakers monitor custom made for the Telarc needs and these ADS monitors were runned by Threshold electronics and Audio Technica cables and was from those monitors where came out my L-2030 designed by M.Kelly who left ADS yeras latter to start designing and manufacturing speakers by his own: Aerial Acoustics, very good quality performers indeed.

So, several of the Telarc LPs were monitored with the L-2030.

I still own it and through the years I made several modifications to compete today and not bettered by names as Magico, Wilson, YG or Soundlabs: you name it and my L-2030 just does not give up. This is the reason why I don’t own any other speakers today. Every time that I change audio electronics, cables, cartridges, tonearms, CDs, etc. etc the speakers always tells me the quality differences.

Telarc needs were for speakers that truly goes deep in the bass range and when they used the L-2030s ADS had to design a dedicated crossover to bi-amp the L-2030, the crossover was the C-2000 that I dont use any more.

Here the today status ( its modifications. ) of my ADS:


" This is a Full Range Professional Monitor that I own for many years.

These L 2030 was designed by Mike Kelly ( Aerial speakers ) and till today it match all my priorities.

It is " heavy " tweaked to do that: first it has " three hands " ( internally ) of a insulation/antivibrational treatment ( like a white paint. I can’t remember the ingredients. ) from Acoustical Magic Company ( it works marvelous ) inside all the box ( a big one box: 58-5/8" ( H ) x 27-1/4" (W) x 13-1/8" (D) ).

It is internally hard wired with Silver Oval by Analysis Plus cable and KCAG by Kimber Kable.

I take out the crossover ( now is external ) and change all the parts: resistors ( Powertron by Vishay. ), all silver air core solid ribbon ( 5.5 cms. of pure silver. Almost 2kg. of silver in the bigest one. ) Alpha-Core inductors , WIMA FKP 1 and KEMET caps in the crossover ( before these caps I used: Duelund, Jantzen, V-caps, Mundorf and the like. All those " boutique " expensive caps are truly a trash. ), the speakers cables goes soldered directly to the crossover parts. This speaker crossover is tri-hard-wired from the amps output to the 3-way crossover parts and speaker drivers.

In reality are three separate/stand alone crossovers: one for the tweeter, one for the midrange and the other for the woofer, all these hard-wired directly to the amps ( no connectors. )

I’m only not biamp my system ( with the subs. ) but these ADS main/satellite speakers are true tri-wired in hard-wire directly from the amps to each crossover parts in the three way speaker design all the way down to the amplifier output.

I change the internal damping glass fiber by 10kg ( each one ) of long hair 100% virgin wool and change the fabric cloth of the grille for a " transparent one ".

Both speakers have at the rear-center the Antiresonant Vibration System by MICROSCAN model TM-8 that works from 20hz to 1.5Khz.

These L 2030 have: One acoustic suspension 1" silk dome tweeter, one main acoustic suspension 2" silk dome midrange, three auxiliar acoustic suspension 2" silk dome midranges ( similar to the main midrange but with a less powerful magnet. ) and two long-excursion acoustic suspension ( sealed. ) paper 14" woofers.

These are exceptional drivers especially the tweeter/main midrange ones.

These L2030 midrange design permit to " run " the speakers on " point source " mode ( tweeter and main midrange ) or through a " weighted " line source mode ( tweeter plus the 4 midranges. ), in this last " fashion " is how I have it ( hard-wired too. )

These are some manufacturer specs:

- Frecuency response: 22-20K +.- 3 db ; 18-28K +.- 5db.

-Efficiency: 95 db SPL.

- Power rating: 300 watts nominal; 1,200 peak.

Weight: 95kg.

These L 2030 are the " speaker satelite " in my subwoofer/speaker satelite configuration and works from around 80Hz and up. Main reason to take this " road " was and is to lower the room system IMD and THD.

In the past I try many configurations: single amp, bi-amp, tri-amp, with sub, with out sub, only SS amps, SS and Tube amps, with passive crossover, with electronic crossover, hybrid crossovers, etc...

Finally I’m here.

Back external tweeters:

These ones was a spare tweeters from a Dalquihst DQM-9 that I owned and already sold.

These tweeters are 1" silk dome ( same efficiency that the front ones ) and are connected in phase with the front ones and works with his own crossover at around 5k and up and have, too, an off/on switch. " "



I was in touch twice with M.Kelly looking for his advise. Good that you were a proudly ADS worker where with out nothing of today technology, parts, materials, etc, etc, ADS still today is a challenger for the best today speakers through the ones I own.

Regards and enjoy the MUSIC NOT DISTORTIONS,



I had a pair of L810 back in the early 80’s.  I liked the sound but they were quite inefficient and didn’t sound good at low volumes so I sold them.  I did have all ADS speakers in my car audio system back then with 3 huge Soundstream amps.  Unfortunately, the car was stolen Dec25, 1991 and was totally stripped.  There was nothing left but the car body minus the interior and tires sitting on milk crates near some housing project.  That was the end of my car audio days and ADS. Also, I only had liability on the 7 year old Nissan so I lost my shirt. 

Like Imaninatural above, I bought ADS L710s in 1980. I had saved enough money from my first decently-paying job to replace a KLH model 5 (the portable one) that had been stolen from me three years before. Kept them more than 30 years before trading them in at Echo Audio here in Portland for a pair of used Harbeth M30s. Thanks for the post.

A/D/S L-810s were the first pair of home audio speakers I purchased in 1981, and I owned them almost 20 years till I stupidly sold them.

I also had a full car audio system with (I believe) 300i speakers, and I would often get comments such as, “this is the first car system I have heard, that sounds like a home system”.

I still use a pair of metal L-300s in my garage system and they are still going strong.

After trying to live with a variety of speakers, I bought a pair of Aerial Model 9s about 16 years ago, since Michael Kelly formerly of A/D/S is the Aerial Acoustics owner/designer. I found the Model 9s reminded me of the great tone and dynamics I remembered from the L-810s. With Michael’s help, I have migrated from the 9s to a pair of LR5s with a pair of SW-12 subs and will probably never change, except maybe to add another SW-12 sub or two.

I really enjoy the great tone and dynamics of the sealed box LR5s and agree 100% with Michael Fremer’s review of those speakers.

We carried ADS and displayed the formidable 2030. They were stock but could be easily biamped which we did w a variety of SS and tube amps, notably the CJ Premier. My memory is we sold 3 pair, which given cost / size and complexity was excellent. We carried Infinity and a bevy of ESL, but properly setup they certainly had significant virtues. Given modern cabinet construction advances, i would say the cabinet was the weak link ( same as Infinity ). Man could they rock but still the excellent and sweet dome mid. Obviously we sold a lot of 810 and 710, excellent. ADS had probably the only cat proof and quasi transparent grill on the market….metal perfplate. This is a brand that deserves resurrection. Remember the disaster foray into electronics ? ha.


@rauliruegas ​​​​@sbank thanks so much for jogging my memory. Congrats Raul for taking the 2030 up many levels. Would be a hoot to hear them someday. My 7’s have a rear firing tweeter which i very rarely use as i don’t have an overly dead room. Every now and again it’s use helpful in spritzing up a dead recording, typically close mic stuff. Interesting addition. Best to you two truly experienced, high sample size passionate audiophiles.


I still have a pair of ADS L1290ii that I used for a couple of years.  I used a MINIDSP to biamp them driving them with a total of 350 Watts per channel while they sounded OK I could never get the sound out of them that I liked.  My other system used Dahlquist DQ12s and dynaco tube amps and I preferred the open baffle sound opposed to the sealed boxes even though the ADs had much better bass.   I have replaced the ADS with SpeakerLab corner horns and a SET amp.  I prefer this to any of my other systems.

It may be the amplifiers which are the same vintage as the speakers (Luxman and SAE) but I just couldn't make it work for me. 

The ADS are going up for sale.


In 2018 picked up a pre-owned pair of  vintage A/D/S/ L210B speakers for use in a breakfast room system matched up with a Bluesound Powernode N150.  Impressive little speakers.  



There are those who probably also remember the Nakamichi / ADS system in the metal flight case. …. I had parts of that in my Camaro back in the day… The ADS plate amp and speakers in particular w a Concord head unit….FUN

I had a pair of ADS car speakers on the rear tray of a 1965 Volvo P-1800S. Even with the metal grill covers they were pretty awesome, as was the car. But time and memory tend to make old things better than they really were.

I used Braun L200 and L300 in the late 70's which I think were similar/same to the ADS versions.


I also had a pair of Rogers Ls3/5a's, and a little later (1980?) the ABS1 add ons.


All were powered by an Eico integrated, MC30's or Dynaco ST70's in either stereo or mono mode.


The Mono 70's had an added TF (choke?) to the power supply, plus a few other parts added/removed. 


Preamps were the Dynaco PAS or the pre and/or phono section of the Advent 300.


Loved them and also sometimes used the 200's in my car via a 12V Advent 300 receiver and a small (playback only) Nakamichi cassettes deck.


In the early 2000's I puchased a pair of mint ADS L880's locally, but ended up selling them as I had switched to flea watt DH/SET amps paired with Reynaud and later on vintage wide range single drivers.


Listened the the 710's in other people's systems many times when they first came out and liked them (much better than the 700, IMO).


There was also a large 900 model that I heard a few times in nice systems (liked it a lot), but forget the exact model number.



Still cranking with my ‘80s still so awesome L1090 towers…in fact, playing a St. Germain playlist as I write…Class D Hypex amp, if anyone’s interested…mellow, mellow sounds.

I have a pair of ADS L1590/2 that I absolutely love. They are in excellent condition and sound very good.

Picked up a pair of L400’s in mint condition last year. Best purchase I’ve made in a long time. Look great, sound even better.

Had a pair of L980's back in the day.  Very musical.  Loved the sound of the "sticky" tweeter dome. Very smooth.

This is my first post here. I had L710 speakers for 35 years and when downsizing in a fit of feeling overwhelmed by the move, I gave them away. A couple years later full of regret, I bought L780s. I like them. They have the ADS sound but they are not as full sounding as I remember the L710s. I’ll keep them for now. They’re still ADS.

I bought a pair of the 810 series 2 in the 80s… loved them.  So did my brother. Then after many years I moved on but gave him mine. He still has both pairs… 25+ yeard old, working perfectly and the tweeters are still sticky. 

Great speakers!

I bought my first pair of ADS 910 speakers in 1978.  I still have them, although they need to be restored.    I still own pairs of 1590/2's, a pair of 1290's, and a pair of 810's.  The latter three pairs still sound great.    

In my opinion, the classic "fried-egg" mid-range driver used in those ADS speakers is still one of the best mid-range drivers ever designed.  

There is a guy Richard So on the ADS FB group that specializes in parts, rebuilds, etc FYI. 

Almost forgot my 780 Mk2 are on loan to a buddy down the street…Still rocking in the free world…


Still have two sets of CM5’s in two bedrooms. My son has inherited my CM6’s which I had stand mounted and supplemented by an M&K sub. Replaced those with Aerial Acoustics 8b towers. Aerial was founded by Michael Kelly, formerly of ADS, who still operates Aerial.

Fun aside - had dealer who sold me the Aerial 8b’s come to the house and try to sell me a McIntosh bookshelf to replace the ADS CM5’s. His speakers were at least three times the size of the ADS. He walked out shaking his head. Couldn’t believe the little CM 5’s had deeper, tighter, bass and we’re clearer across the spectrum compared to the larger McIntosh speakers. I wasn’t surprised. It’s why I still have them.

Only very small speakers I’ve heard that were somewhat comparable to the CM5’s were the ATC SCM 7’s. The ATC’s mid and high frequency response was better - clearer and more extended highs. But they do not deliver the low end of the CM5’s. 

My dad came home with a pair of ADS 910's in around 1978. I was five. He's had a few McIntosh setups over the years. Still going- he has them in his shop. 

Still have my ADS L520 in my bedroom and use them almost every night. I still put their bass extension, imaging, and ability to play at lower volumes but still sound FULL up against any speaker south of $1000 today.  Loved that they used crossover components that were good and don't change in electrical value. Just great speakers. Yeah, they only take about 50W, and maybe they won't blow you out of a large room, but for what they are, I love them. 

Fond memories of my long gone 810's. When he was two our older son (now 35) turned up the Amp all the way and blew the speakers. The noise was so lound we had to confront him. A few weeks before he put coins into a computer's floppy drive and that cooked too. Those were the good old days.

Yup, still have two pairs in service. One pair mounted on the wall in the kitchen and are almost always on. Grabs my attention every time I walk into that room. 

I have two pair of L570/2, one in walnut, the other in black.  They sound great and I use them for my office.  One tweeter in the black pair needs replacement, but I have had no luck finding one on ebay.  Also a little concerned that a seller I'm not familiar with would have the sense to pack it correctly so the dome doesn't get crushed in shipment.  If anyone knows of someone who does excellent repairs of dead tweeters (I suspect a voice coil open), please advise.


2030s where ADS Largest speaker they ever made and I would put them up to almost anything. I helped build The very rare BC8s that Telarc ordered

They where used in Monitoring Telarc's 1812 Overture Recordings.

There where I believe only a dozen made

Including one pair in white For ADS President.
i knew Mike Kelly Great and very smart Man.



From 1974 into the 2000’s I worked for Tweeter, which was Boston’s main a/d/s/ dealer. Took dealer training and factory tours with Dr. Goderhard Guenther, Mike Kelly, Dave Marshall. I owned many models, but not the really big ones like the L2030 series. My faves were the 8”/1” 2 way in its many iterations from the Braun L500 to the L570II. They killed the goose when the tacky soft dome was replaced by the polymer dome, IMO. I also loved the Gen 2 3-ways that used the .75” tweeter. The L730 was a great one.  I never felt their bass response had what the Large Advent had in terms of low end sock but Dr. G said they were simply better damped than Advents and were more accurate. 
I have a pair of L300e in my kitchen running off Zone 2 of my AV receiver and they play more hours music than my other systems combined. 

In the late ’70s I had a pair of ads monitors. A friend accurately described them as screaming bricks.

Had L710s for a few years (late 70's I think).  Moved on from there to satellite/subs.

I have a pair of L880's for my bedroom system. I think they sound excellent with a smooth, well balanced sound.

I owned an ADS PB-1500 back in the day. It made a great coffee table, but a lousy sub.

In the mid 80s I sold ADS as well as Kef. 
we regularly got “special purchase” deals from the distributors. 
a very fine home audio speaker across the model spectrum. 
And sorely missed in mobile electronics. 

I had an ADS amp and speaker tri-amped system in an RX-7 and then a Jeep Wrangler 😜

Dear @bstbomber : Yes, you are rigth the monitors in the 1812 were the  BC8. I own oll LP Telarc recordings where Telarc used not only the 2030's but the 1530 that uses the same 2030 tweeter/main Midrange.


@tomic601  , you are rigth too the big enclousure in the 2030 has several problems and I took some actions about and I received advise directly from M.Kelly.


The tweeter/main mid range in the 2030's are really something exceptional even today. No, my modified L-2030 certainly is not a perfect speaker but performs at very high quality levels that are unveliable for a true vintage design.


Congratulations to  A D S   .



In the late 70's or early eighties I owned a pair of A D S L1290 floor standing speakers in walnut finish. They were stunning looking speakers with the black metal perforated grille. I loved that the metal grill cover was mounted with pins that pushed into holes in the cabinet. Very easy on & off. As I( remember I listened mostly with the grill covers off.

They had a very direct, clear sound and had good frequency extension (bass was emphasized).

This was when digital sound was the big buzz-word, and A D S rode those coat tails. 

I drove them with a Luxman integrated amp (70 w) and they sounded very dynamic. Back in the day I didn't pay attention to things like stage,. image, air, etc. I just wanted things clear & loud. The L1290's filled that bill.

Still have my 710's purchased early 80's new. Sound fine for a second system primarily used for TV/movie sound. 

I purchased the ADS Sub-Sat system in the early 1980's and they served in my main system for about a decade.  They are my son's main system today and he loves them.  I did have to replace the caps in the subwoofer amp a few years ago.  Not bad after ~35 years of continued use.

Michael Kelly is a true gentleman and a great speaker designer.  I had dinner with him once in Boston when I sold his Aerial speakers in my audio store.  Needless to say, the Aerials are superb speakers as well.

Dear @dougthebiker  : " the Aerials are superb speakers as well. "


You are rigth, M.Kelly is a very knowledge high levels on speaker design. Fortunatelly I own the 2030 but if not probably Aerial could " live " in my system.



ADS threads come up periodically and it’s always nice to see these speakers get their due. I have LL1290 mkII powered by an HK 430 receiver and they sound absurdly good together. I think I paid like $500 combined, maybe 12 years ago. A crazy bargain.

Have run 710's and 910's for nearly 20 years.

710's for vocals and classical.

910's sound good with every kind of music.

For my ear-brain connection and considering my bank account, I have need of no other speakers

Bstbomber. I have only owned the 200’s in my honda civic and still use my L780/2. For a fairly compact speaker the low frequencies are surprisingly present and the mids and highs are still impressive. Sometimes i just play Jimi’s Little Wing just to hear the crystalline bell ring.   My question what ADS have you or would you own and why. 

Have owned the following: l980, l1530, l620, l710, sat 7, s700, l9e and l8e. L980 and the l9e are my favorite, would love to hear the big 2030’s.

I own ADS L1290s and use as my main speakers. I live them. Had the tweeters and mids rebuilt by Richard So, and with the advise of @brownsfan I’m going to start an upgrade of the xovers using premium parts. Running them with Pass Aleph 1.2 at 150 watts, at times I yearn for a bit more bass but nothing bad enough to stop my enjoyment. 

@au_lait, it is likely that you are going to have to live with a roll off at 40 Hz with these speakers. However, it is likely that they are capable of nice tight articulate bass. The printed circuit board seriously compromises performance. If you are able to build a completely new cross over, as I did, you can eliminate the switches that enable bi amping and provide tweeter attenuation. Those switches seriously compromise performance. They are cheap and are now 40 years old. Mine completely disintegrated when I tried to desolder them. I also eliminated the tweeter protection, which made an easily audible improvement. If you don’t drive them too hard, you can probably get away with this. You will probably also get some improvement in low frequency quality by replacing the internal wiring. I used Duelund tinned copper for this.

One of the things I really noticed after my crossover work is the midrange beauty. Very smooth and refined, as compared to my other speakers, both of which use a 7 inch mid-range.

I would encourage anyone who likes the 1290’s and has spent the money to have Richard So recondition the drivers consider a rebuild or redesign of the crossovers. If you are handy with this sort of thing, a complete crossover redesign, like I did will afford a much improved speaker. However, for those who are less ambitious, simply replacing the stock resistors and caps will make a big difference.

Additional information.  I considered replacing the inductors, but decided against it. Doing so would significantly elevate the cost of the project and probably necessitate using an external cross over.  I also thought about but did not go for an upgrade on the binding posts. 

I bought these speakers used about 15 years ago, and they were in very rough shape.  The cabinets were badly scratched and the grills were really bent up.  Had the cosmetics been better, I probably would have done an even more radical crossover rebuild with better inductors for those that are in series with the drivers, where the correct inductor values could be sourced. 

I got as far as I could with this rebuild last winter, but put the work on hold to attend to some other goals I had for this last year.  I don't enjoy the cabinet work that much, so its easy to push that kind of thing aside.  

ADS!! Holy Moly Batman! ADS car audio back in the 80’s and 90’s was the shiz-nit.  When I had a paper route a zillion years ago, there was this fella who competed in the car audio sound-off events and he competed in the 50 watt and under classs for a complete car audio system, and he won it using ADS speakers in his car and a Soundstream Class A amp; he won the event and his car was published in Car Audio or something like that.  I still have new in the box some 320i component speakers I never installed and some 300i plate speakers.  I even have a few PQ10s laying around.  My first ever ADS amp was a PQ8!  Har.  As far as home equipment goes, I do have some equipment back at my Mom’s house; I don’t remember the numbers but I remember when I bought it, it was A LOT of money for being a wee lad at the time... Ahhh, those were the good old days...

I bought a pair of ADS a few years back and worked on the crossover and bass drivers. Didnt take long before I sold them. A good speaker back in the day but a far cry from current offerings. As another points out, they can be greatly improved with a bit of soldering, a few subtractions and additions. I dont think you need to buy designer parts to get a significant improvement.

I had a pair of ADS 320i speakers in the B-pillars of an '82 Trans-Am T-top with a Nakamichi head unit. The stereo sounded great. The car was fun for a while but was really just a bucket o' bolts.