Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups

5E3 Speaker Question: P12R or P12Q?

Discussion in 'Glowing Bottle Tube Amp Forum' started by DennisM, Aug 28, 2017.

  1. DennisM

    DennisM Tele-Meister

    Nov 18, 2013
    This isn't about which speaker brand is the best. I know everyone loves Weber, Celestion and Eminence etc.

    I did a 5e3 build recently and I happened to have a newer P12Q on hand, so that's what I put in there. After playing it for a few weeks, it kinda seems that the P12Q might be too much speaker for the 5e3. The bottom is nice but seems to be a tad too much and it seems to have too much volume. I'm not getting the breakup that I was expecting. Before laying down over a hundred more I thought I'd check with you guys to get your opinions. How much difference is there between the R & Q volume wise, bass response wise and breakup wise?

    I know the originals came with the R.
  2. King Fan

    King Fan Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

    Jan 1, 2013
    Salt Lake City
    Sorry, are you talking about reissue Jensens made in Italy? They may have the same model numbers, and some folks really like 'em, but they aren't famous for reproducing the tones of the Chicago versions.

    It sounds you've done your research, so you'll know that people like 5e3 speakers from every possible maker, level of efficiency, and type of tonality, from Celestion Gold through the classic Weber 12A125-A, American and British, paper and hemp, down and up the efficiency ladder from vintage Rolas to massive JBLs.

    If you don't like your Jensen, and it's a reissue, I'm not sure that moving over one step in their lineup will float your boat.
    GoldDeluxe5E3 likes this.
  3. DennisM

    DennisM Tele-Meister

    Nov 18, 2013
    Oh I like it fine. It sounds great, with the exceptions stated above. Yes, it is a reissue made in Italy. I'm just wondering if going from a 35 watt down to the less efficient 25 watt R will give me less bottom, volume and better breakup at lower volume.
  4. GoldDeluxe5E3

    GoldDeluxe5E3 Tele-Holic

    Aug 5, 2015
    Concord CA
    I also happen to have experience with the Jensen Q speaker (Italian reissue) in my home brew 5e3, and it's decidedly fizzy. Not necessarily bad, but fizzy. It's one of two speakers I play my Tweed Deluxe through.

    The other speaker is the Weber 12A125A. It's excellent, voicing the Tweed Deluxe with burbling beat frequencies, nice edge breakup, and horn-like mids. Weber claims this speaker is designed specifically for the 5e3, and I've found that proves out.
    King Fan, Wally and DennisM like this.
  5. Kev Reg

    Kev Reg Tele-Meister

    Dec 2, 2016
    I went further with a 10inch jensen p10r in my build and even they boom out on the low frequencies. You may not hear any percieved difference in lower frequencies between the p12r or q.
    What fixed it for me was to swap out the TAD 6v6 tubes for JJ6v6. The JJs noticably tightened up the bass but also provide more headroom which can be a blessing or a curse to some.
    Also room placement was important. I bring mine out from the corner of the room where it sits and it makes a difference to the low end.
  6. slider313

    slider313 Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

    Jan 6, 2011
    The P12R is 93.7 db where the P12Q is 94.4. Not that much difference. The smaller magnet size and voice coil of the "R" will make it brighter and produce earlier break up. Are you using a 12ay7 or 12ax7 in V1?
  7. DennisM

    DennisM Tele-Meister

    Nov 18, 2013
    12ay7. This info helps a lot. Thanks!
  8. Tootone

    Tootone Tele-Meister

    Sep 4, 2015
    Perth WA
    I came across this guy's Youtube channel when I was "researching" the P12Q in my new Blues Deluxe RI. At the time I was planning on getting a celestion alnico cream (I decided Im keeping the P12Q).

    In this video he talks chapter and verse on vintage P12Qs and his custom built A12Qs. He also has a load more 5E3 vids with different speakers and guitars.

    Seems like really nice bloke who knows his stuff.

  9. screamin eagle

    screamin eagle Poster Extraordinaire

    Oct 9, 2008
    S. CA
    With the R, you're going to introduce a little more speaker distortion than the Q--being straight coned. Not that that is necessarily a bad thing, more of a preference.

    I like the Q type speakers best, though the R is great at that raunchy, lo-fi blues ala Willie Johnson and Pat Hare.

    What type of music are you playing? What volume are you playing at. The 5e3 circuit is inherently a little boomy--not always the speakers fault (and there are things that can be done to address this, though it move the amp away from some of it's charms).

    If you're not getting the breakup you're looking for is it because the volume is too loud by 3-4 on the dial and you're not turning it up further? If so, you should be informed that much past 4 doesn't really increase the volume. These things are almost on/off.
    DennisM likes this.
  10. DennisM

    DennisM Tele-Meister

    Nov 18, 2013
    It really does sound great. I have no beef at all with the way the speaker itself sounds. I just wanted to know if it would have more grit and a tad less bottom with an R. I'm not a dirt guy. I mainly just noodle in the bedroom with country riffs and maybe a few bluesy things. I like just a little grit on the notes. It does have some when I get on it. I can't plug it in to #1 on the bright. I can't stay in the room with it...serious ear damage. I mostly use #2 on the bright with the volume juuuust after it comes on which is about 1 1/2. I can get to 2 and that's about it comfortably. That's with a tele. The Les Paul is a whole nuther thing. It's twice as loud (and boomier) than the tele. I'll probably just leave the Q in it. I'm getting up in the years and my ears don't work like they used to.
  11. dan40

    dan40 Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

    Aug 19, 2015
    Richmond Va
    I have tried the Weber Sig 12a, 12a125a, reissue P12Q and a WGS g12q in my 5e3. The 5e3 should have plenty of breakup by 3 or 4 on the volume. Like screamin eagle said, it really does not get any louder after that, just more compressed and gritty. If you are only playing in the bedroom and do not need a lot of volume, the Sig 12a and WGS g12q are both excellent sounding speakers with slightly less volume and overall bass than the other two. I'm currently running a vintage P12Q which also sounds excellent but they can be hard to find in good shape at a decent price.
    screamin eagle and DennisM like this.
  12. screamin eagle

    screamin eagle Poster Extraordinaire

    Oct 9, 2008
    S. CA
    Like @dan40 said, check out the Weber Sig alnico smooth cone. That is probably your best bet for your application. They are cheap too, as far as speakers go.

    You should also spend some time with the normal channel.

    Also, the is gain in the tone control. If you're trying to squeak out hair at lower volumes you should max out the tone control. If it's too bright than roll back the tone on your guitar.
    jtcnj likes this.
  13. jtcnj

    jtcnj Tele-Meister

    Feb 2, 2015
    Brick, N.J. USA
    I run the Weber Sig12a in mine and like it fine, but I dont have others in that group to compare it to.
    Volume reacts like yours does as well.
    Played on the bright channel, V1 - 12aY7,
    My 5e3 starts getting gritty at 9:00 (unlabeled home fab chassis) and like said, just gets more compressed and meaner but does get a bit louder up to about 11:00, and then again as the vol pot nears max.

    This is with the normal channel volume any where from 9-3:00. Cleans up quite a bit but still very loud when the normal vol approaches max and that tone pot most definitely affects gain significantly. To be clear, playing through the bright channel and commenting on the vol. interactivity.

    I play at home in the basement mostly alone, no band or drummer; loud is relative and subjective.

    I realize this is off on a tangent from your question; just my$.02.
    DennisM likes this.
  14. screamin eagle

    screamin eagle Poster Extraordinaire

    Oct 9, 2008
    S. CA
    Boy ain't that the truth. What seems loud at home practicing (even to your neighbors) can become lost in the mix of a small band. With more than one guitar player things really get interesting.

    I don't think a lot of musical situations call for amps with more than 20 tube watts these days (unless you're a clean freak), however managing a mix with less than 20 tubes watts requires quite a bit of attention to the mix and the others in the band.
  15. alnicopu

    alnicopu Friend of Leo's

    Oct 3, 2009
    The city
    You starting out with a boomier amp, IMHO. Not sure about the 12" version but the p10q reissue beat out a high dollar Weber and a Warehouse in my '65 blackface non reverb princeton hands down. Not sure why people are always dissing them. I have a reissue p8r in my champ thats bests everything ive had in it other than an oxford 8-ev that came with a lot of them stick. My wife even said that about both amps as she heard me swapping speakers around in them. And she couldnt care less!!
    DennisM likes this.
  16. DennisM

    DennisM Tele-Meister

    Nov 18, 2013
    I've only had 1 Weber speaker. I bought it to put in a SF Champ because everybody was ranting about Weber. It was a long time was an 8" alnico of some sort. I might get lynched for saying this here, but it sounded hideous. Some kind of weird, compressed hollow sound. I yanked it immediately and put the stock speaker back in. Much better. That was my first and last Weber. It was big bucks too. This Jensen P12Q sounds fantastic in the Tweed Deluxe and I've decided to leave it in there. I just ordered a C10R for my PRRI also.
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.