|Pioneer HPM 150 / 1500 Speaker|
The Pioneer HPM 150 (HPM 1500 in Europe) is one of the famous vintage speakers out there and the top of the HPM series. The acronym stood initially inconsistently for “high-polymer-mylar / film”, later it was consistently stated as “High Polymer Molecular”, in particular in the US during the 80ies. This heavy 4-way bass-reflex speaker has been sold from 1977 to 1980 for a price of $500. Pioneer´s HPM 150 was not a usual high-end speaker, but it rather a milestone in speaker technology because of two changes. It introduced on the one hand the use of new materials (carbon fiber) for speaker cones and on the other hand the innovative “high polymer molecular film super tweeter”.
Compared to the HPM 100, Pioneer´s standard HPM speaker, the bigger HPM 150 is of significantly higher quality, with a bigger woofer (15 ¾ inch) and the typical omnidirectional super-tweeter, which can be found on top of each speaker.
The tweeter and midrange speaker in the front of the speaker look (nearly) identical to the ones of the HPM 100, but are actually different parts. While the HPM 100 had to cope with distortions at higher volumes, the 150 seems to be immune against distortions at nearly any volume. As this speaker was Pioneer´s high-end household speaker, it is very difficult to find a pair of these on garage sales for little money. However, as the foam was of mediocre quality it is possible to find an HPM 150 for a decent price that just has to be refoamed.
Refoaming the HPM 150 (HPM 1500)
The HPM 150 (HPM 1500) is a great speaker and should be refoamed, if necessary. Foam surrounds might have dry rotted or been punctured over the years. A refoaming kit can usually be bought for around $30-40 and replacing old foams will take around 1 to 2 hours. It does not require any particular skill, just a calm hand and a little patience. We tried out several available foams and recommend to use Parts Express´ 15 inch Surround Kit. You can find it in our Store or directly at amazon.com below.
HPM 150 Price: $1100-1600
(Depending on overall condition)
Pioneer HPM-150 / 1500 Service Manual Link by Elektrotanya.com
Can the volume level of the HPM-150 Super Tweeter be adjusted? I can barely hear them on mine, and it depends on the music that's playing.
100's Are better. They were designed by Bart Locanthi. The HPM-150's were cheaper in design and instead of treated cloth surrounds where they would never really need to be changed, they used foam which rots. HPM 100's are nice. Get them recapped with MKP. You won't be dissatisfied.
Bart Locanthi also designd the 150's and they are far better than the 100's, they were definately not cheaper in design and were the flagship model, anyone who knows and has heard both will tell you that the 150's were by far a better speaker, just not as common or cheap as the 100's
I had the 150’s and my brother had the 100’s, the 150’s were far superior to the 100’s. Someone commented that they could barely hear the tweeters; that definitely wasn’t the case with mine.
Wow!! 100s better not a chance! what the! I've had both and I can say I sold the 100s years ago and just will not let go of my hpm-1500 they keep working there way in the cycle. FYI you will need an amp at least 120W per channel. That may be the reason Richard based his statement off.
I have a pair of them (HPM 150) and maybe will sell them.
Is the prize above for one or a couple?
I paid $750 for my HPM 150’s in 1978. In 2021 dollars that would be $3207. I have re-foamed my woofers and these speakers still sound incredible.
150's still sound better than most new expensive speakers made today. They need to be powered clean and set up properly. Most people have not heard them set up in this manner.
I have a pair of HPM-1500 speakers and it seems that the surrounds were a problem.
They suffered another issue however when moving and one of the base speakers received a puncture. Here's how I repaired both and was actually written up in Stereo Review.
For the surrounds, instead of foam I used bicycle inner tubes and cut them to fit and secured them in place with a hot glue gun. I hesitated whether I should leave the air nipple or not as a joke but decided not as it might affect the sound. However I bet I have the only set of speakers with 33 psi on the surrounds.
As for the puncture,.. I gently pushed it back into place and applied clear fingernail polish. I got this tip from a speaker maker and worked like a charm.
I've had the speakers now for 36 years and they still sound great.
Just purchased a pair of pioneer HPM 150's in excellent condition my question is I found out both of the 15in woofers have been replaced by realistic or Radio Shack woofers however they do handle 250 watt Max will this greatly decrease the value of these beautiful and amazing sounding speakers
Got hpm150 when they came out had the foam changed by expert in Montréal Cost 400$ but with guaranty of not roting just Great speakers bass wise incredible.i was told worth 1400$ each.
I have a question just purchased a pair of HPM 150 s they are in excellent condition but just found out both 15-inch woofers had been replaced with realistic Radio Shack woofers but I did find out they are still rated at 250 Watts Max how much has this decrease the value of the speakers yet they are still beautiful and sound amazing
Hello I too have the HPM 150 and you cannot buy the quality speakers like these anymore Hands down !! The walnut case still beautiful and sound just unbeatable. I also have the Pioneer component system from the 70's that day viewed and it also works perfectly. The old 33's still sound beautiful. Thanks Pioneer…
It decreases the value tremendously. Almost any issue can be repaired, but when an original driver is no longer available, that's a different problem. FYI, the power handling ability of a speaker driver is probably its least important spec (since there is no standard for it, it's practically meaningless). Do an internet search on Thiele/Small parameters, and you'll see how complex the issue of substituting a driver really is.
Got a pair sittin around all original haven't been used in at least 20 years. My dad bought them in England while in the air force.
Does anyone know a reputable place i could sell them. Hate to see em go but would rather someone enjoy them like my dad did. Im in central fl
Hi, Are you in England? If so I'd possibly be interested in buying these, depending on the condition. What's your email? Thanks, M
I have 4 HPM-1500's. 1 pair for parts and 1 functional set. I am actually in the process of selling all my vintage gear. including pioneer SA-9500ii and TX-9500ii.
the speakers are not perfect. the functional pair have been re foamed. damage to one woofer that was glued and a hole in 1 mid range. other than that they function fine. My father picked these up while stationed in Hawaii for USMC. I am located in Southern Wisconsin. I also have it all on FB market place under my wife's account. not sure how long I will try to sell. I just tossed them up to see. might stick other drivers in the spare (damaged cabinets) and run all 4.
I have just about all of the HPM speakers, both first and second generation. The 150's are much nicer than the 100's and they are better than the 1100's on bass, they seem to have more depth but I would claim the 1100's to be better in the mid and top range, being smoother and more detailed. The 900's are again nicer than the 100's with more detail in the bass and all the other regions but having said this, I would'nt sell any. I also have HPM 60, 40, 500 and 300'S. I have owned many Pioneer high end speakers but I love the HPM range but it doesn't mean that the other Pioneer speakers I had owned were not better.
I have a pair of 1500 and can't find the original woofers in your opinion is there any other pioneer woofers that would replace them I would rather have the originals. If you know of any I will buy them I would rather not settle for second best
I bought a pair of HPM1500 at an auction in Copperas Cove, TX in 1993. Paid a whopping $40 for the pair. Awesome set of speakers, but sub foams were rotted. Had just got out of the Army (Ft. Hood), and my ex was making life miserable. Had just enough room in my little car for clothes when I left for Illinois. Looking back, I would have drove naked and took the speakers! Would love to have them again!
Your story made me…sad, Sir! Were you ever able to find another pair?
I had a pair of HPM150s. I thought they were great speakers. The foam failed on the woofers and did not know about repairing them. I finally took them apart and saved the crossovers and all the speakers including the glass super tweeters. Still have them all. Anyone want to buy????
When I was in the Army, in 1977, I went to the Sight and Sound Center on Post and put a pair of 150’s (I was in Germany, so they were called 1500’s) on layaway. One day, as I entered, I heard some really loud music, that sounded great and I said: “Those must be the HPM 1500’s”. but I was told that is was the Pioneer 901 series III’s. I immediately cancelled my layaway and bought the 901’s. I still have them. but I wish I had the 1500’s too.