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Hellatone 60L

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by Rumble, Nov 23, 2008.

  1. Rumble

    Rumble Tele-Afflicted

    Aug 19, 2007
    **
    I’m posting this not to start a discussion (although certainly feel free to comment), but to serve as a future reference for people doing searches. There seems to be some amount of uncertainty about Avatar's Hellatone 60L 12” speaker and little information on the web to clarify it. The Hellatone 30 is clearly a Celestion G-12H that is broken in, aged, and relabeled. The Hellatone 60 is a Celestion Vintage 30 given the same treatment.

    However, the Hellatone 60L is marketed as a slightly altered version of the Vintage 30, which is then given the breaking in and aging treatment. It’s supposed to be a limited issue speaker made specially for “certain manufacturers” and has a different voice coil and dust cap cover. It’s advertised as having more bass and less spikey highs than the stock Vintage 30.

    I recently put two of the 60Ls in a 2x12 cabinet to run my 50-watt Marshall JMP through. This is my take:

    Under the Hellatone speaker label it does say “Vintage 30”, but it doesn’t say “Celestion”; it says “Marshall”, so that’s the manufacturer it’s made for. It says “Celestion” on the little sticker on the edge of the magnet. But what tells me that it’s not just a normal Vintage 30 manufactured for Marshall is that instead of being rated at 60 watts, the label underneath says 70 watts (the Hellatone label on top says 60 watts). So the difference is more than just skin deep.

    Previously, in the same cabinet, I had a Vox/Wharfedale that’s a G-12H clone and an Eminence Legend V1216, which I believe is their take on the Vintage 30. I also have a 20-watt Heritage Greenback in my AC15. The 60Ls sound more like the Greenback than they do either the G-12H clone or the V30 clone. This was a very pleasant surprise.

    The 60Ls have a thick, woody tone like the Greenbacks and are less harsh than the G-12H clone or the V30 clone. Both those clones had more bass than the Greenback, but less midrange and crisper highs, sort of a scooped sound that could be abrasive. The 60Ls have a midrange similar to the Greenback but don’t have the shrill highs of the others.

    What the 60Ls also have is excess (but not excessive) bass, as advertised. The only hesitation I’ve had with the Greenback is that it doesn’t have strong, tight bass. The bass from the 60Ls isn’t overwhelming, but really bursts, nice and low and tight. They also overdrive nicely compared to the two clones. And at 120 watts total for the two of them (actually 140 based on the label underneath), I don’t have to worry about the 50-watt Marshall blowing them. However, the 60L is probably not the right speaker for a Fender twanger. It doesn’t have the highs for that. It’ll do rock, blues, jazz and has really good note definition, even when heavily distorted.


    So I’m very pleased with the 60Ls. I was originally looking for Greenbacks for the cabinet but decided to try these “Vintage 30s”. The 60Ls give me the thickness I was looking for and the bass response that Greenbacks don’t have. It may be that Marshall wanted a high wattage speaker that sounded more like the original Greenbacks, so Celestion altered the design of the Vintage 30 to reflect that need. The Avatar breaking in process and aging may have contributed to the smoothness as well. I’d like to compare them directly to V30s or Hellatone 60s, but I would definitely say the 60Ls have more bass, more midrange thickness, and less sharp highs than the Eminence clone of the V30 or even the G-12H, surprisingly.
     
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