Couldn’t resist the opportunity - Snell A3

… to lay my hands on a nice set of Snell A3:s today. Makes me wonder where the inspiration for DBL came from :blush: Anyway, one of the great vintage speakers out there with a midrange to die for and lots of inner detail and dynamics.


Very nice indeed. Your piano black NBLs look fantastic too. Not seen any in that finish before.

They are actually hand-painted (yew imitation) by an artist friend of the family who owned the speakers.

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I bump this post. Any other members using Snell (or Audio Note) speakers with Naim amplification?

The Type A (and Type E/J) are truly great speakers that can be purchased for more or less “nothing” compared to modern speakers of similar calibre.

Type A looks and reminds in sound to DBLs ( in my ears) driven by proper amplifiers with enough power (we talk 500 level).

Interestingly in the hi-fi world, just like with so many other things, people are often seduced by the notion that new is better, when that is not inevitably the case. I’ve never heard the Snells - while I guess their size precludes them from many people’s consideration, which probably works in their favour in terms of secondhand price.

Yes agree and Peter Snell was an autodidact genius loudspeaker designer who personally hand tuned each speaker crossover to achieve the very low tolerances he wanted before the speakers left the factory I am told. Unfortunately he passed away only 38 years old (like Felix Mendelssohn). One wonder what he could have a achieved if he had lived a longer life.

Many many years ago when I was on assignment to the US, I remember walking into a hifi shop and hearing a really great sound - good mid range, good bass and good top end - the soumd was being produed by a pair of Snell Type D speakers. At the time my speakers (which I took with me to the US was a pair of Heybrook 2)… especally with the bigger rooms that houses in the US have, the Heybrook were a bot lost… so in the end I purchased the Snell Type D.

Two years later I moved back to the Uk and brought the Snells back with me - and was happy to say that they still sounded great in my house in the Uk…

I subsequently sold them on to a friend of mine who is still using them - driven by a pair of Audiolab 8000P per each speaker… and I have to admit every time I go to his house I still marvel at just how good they sound even after all these years of us… when I purchased the Snells (guess coming on to 25 odd years ago ) for about $2500 (cant remember the exact price) - I never thought they would still be in active use for all this time still sounding wonderful

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I believe the Snell A3i (the last incarnation) was about USD 6,000 in 1992 or so which would be north of USD 15,000 today.

Long gone now, but I think my first high- end speaker was snell j II , and even then they were a bargain in the second-hand market. My guess is I used them with an apt preamp, hafler xl 280 and thoren s td 145. My previous speaker (probably) was the smaller advent.

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