How often should these be replaced in Wilson Sophia 1s?  Purchased these in March ‘19 and did not inquire into whether they had ever been swapped out.  Is there a great benefit to this?


Resistors do not wear out. Some people will swap them out for what they think are better transistors but I am sure Wilson uses good parts. Some capacitors can deteriorate. As far as I know the ones use in passive crossovers do not. 

If you are not happy with the sound work on room acoustics. That is where the money usually is.

Not sure those above that said don’t change have ever owned Wilson’s but maybe have. The resistors you are referring to are not in the crossover, but resistors used as a fuse to protect the tweeter and drivers. They do weaken in time if they’re played hard. The ones dealers and Wilsons recommends are the tweeter and midrange driver; the bass resistors likely do not need replaced. There’s a panel to access these as the components in the crossover are potted so you’re not getting to those. I have not replaced the resistors on my WP6’s and they sound great. My dealer is looking at the cost for the tweeter and midrange which I might change out. Go through a dealer as they may help you out on the cost if you have a history with them.

visually, you can see a transistor that has bone bad, you will know when you see one.

otherwise they last forever, most of mine from the 1960's are good, a handful replaced, cheap, easy solder job..

typical +/- 5% of their stated value in the old days, now +/- 2%,

can you hear the difference?

Thanks adg101 - didn't know Wilson used resistors for fuses. You are correct I haven't owned any. No one I know uses "fuses" in series with any of their drivers.

I think I responded similarly to another poster a while back and was told this is a recommended PM by wilson.

Good info on this thread - thanks.

I am also looking to replace the resistors in my Watt / Puppy 6's.  

Is there a trick to getting the access panel on the Watt (top speaker) removed? I got the six screws removed, but it seems like there is still something holding it on. Any ideas if there is glue or something still that needs to be removed?

Interesting you should bring that up Zerofox. I contacted Wilson about the resistor issue I started this thread on and received this response:

Truthfully, the most challenging aspect of the resistor change is removing the access door - after years of high tension from the screws, the gasket can get quite sticky and it can feel like it is glued in place. The key is to remove all of the screws and walk away for an hour while the gasket starts to breath and open up….some have had to use a bit of heat from a hair dryer and I usually have to insert two Allen wrench drivers to gently pry the plate off and then you can insert the tools just inside the screw hole opening and apply downward pressure.  The plate should pry free.  


i typed transistor, but I meant resistor, they are the ones easy to spot and replace.

Thanks nicholsr.

Heat (hair dryer) was my next step. Thanks for following up...good info.

Interesting that the Puppy access door came right off, but the WATT door is being stubborn.

I'm answering for OP - Of course NOT. Resistors are never used as fuses, how he thought they were, is beyond me! 

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Indeed he is mistaken; they are being used a fuses. Google is your friend.

Ok I will use Google. Just one question, will the resistors fail or go up in value before the driver VC is damaged?

ARC, Audio Research Corporation - Aren’t we talking about speakers here?

Follow up - Okay I used google; I did fine that some speaker manufactures, do use resistors as fuses. In my opinion, the only reasons I can think of that they would do this is to reduce the cost of in warranty repairs, generate new business through upgrades and increase the revenue of out of warranty repairs. Added fuses or resistance will degrade the sound over time due to increased resistance and inductance, plain and simple. If the change is not drastic as in the example of a high power surge you may not even notice the degradation. One day you will wake up and say wow my system doesn’t sound as good, time for an upgrade. I for one don’t use resistors and certainly no fuses between the output of my amplifiers and the driver voice coils, active / multi-amped. If I did use passive crossovers they would use high power and high quality resistors to match the driver levels only. Ones that do not increase in resistance and inductance over the operating life. Happy listening for ever.