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

Recommendations for a 1x15 combo, or 1x15 solution

Discussion in 'Glowing Bottle Tube Amp Forum' started by jahlljw, Oct 31, 2017.

  1. jahlljw

    jahlljw NEW MEMBER!

    Oct 31, 2017
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    Hello All,

    I play a MIM Fender Telecaster that I've upgraded the pickups (hand wound, vintage/lower output T-style in the bridge, Jazzmaster style in the neck), put on a MIA Fender Bullet one piece maple neck, and play tuned down a full step. I love how it plays, love how it sounds, and am looking at getting a new amp that's going to sound great at bedroom levels, but be loud enough to play at small gigs, even if I can't count on being mic'd (three piece, new wave-ish rock).

    Here's what I'd love it to have:

    - tube driven tremolo
    - tube driven reverb
    - tube rectifier
    - no master volume
    - medium breakup
    - 15" speaker

    I love the Princeton '68 that Fender is doing right now, but as I sometimes tune down to drop c, and my neck pickup outputs A LOT of lower frequencies, the 10" speaker doesn't seem to be enough to maintain great articulation. I don't so much mind when the amp is cranked, as the overdrive gets into that Neil Young-ish territory and is nice and rude, but I want those defined lows when playing clean, or with medium breakup.

    As far as I've gone in mulling over options, I've come up with two possible solutions:

    - getting a 1x15" external cab and using it with the Princeton, turning off it's internal speaker (concern: is 12 watts enough for a 15" speaker?)

    - Going for a Supro Rhythm Master (the tone is great, but it's a big price jump, and I don't know if it's going to sound all that good at bedroom levels, the way I know the Princeton will.)

    So, I turn to you all for your educated suggestions and advice. Thank you in advance for your help!
  2. PC_Hater

    PC_Hater Tele-Meister

    Aug 13, 2013
    What speaker does the Princeton '68 use?
    What is the sensitivity rating of the speaker?
    Once you know that you try your very best to find a 15" speaker with the same or nearly the same sensitivity.
    Will you find one? My guess is no.
    Will the highest sensitivity 15" speaker you can find be loud enough with 12 Watts?
    I'll say 'probably' as my best guess, with 'nearly' as a definite maybe.
  3. chris m.

    chris m. Poster Extraordinaire

    I had a Victoria Victorilux, two 6L6, 15" Eminence Legend, cathode bias. Sounded awesome at all volume levels, really awesome. I traded a guy for a different amp, but it was a really wonderful combo amp. It met all of your specifications.

    They make them in different varieties. I got a great deal on mine, used. Allen amps might be a more affordable yet boutique option to consider.

    However, with regard to articulation in the bass, I don't necessarily think going from 10" to 15" is the right track. After all, many bass amps rely on 10" speakers. I think these are the real issues:

    1) Is your speaker good and efficient at reproducing bass? Diameter is not the key. Speaker design is. Bass will also flub out a lot more in an open back cabinet.

    2) Does your amp have enough juice to really push out bass? Bass takes the most energy to produce, requiring the most movement of the speaker. These are the first frequencies to flub out/get weaker when an amp is pushed.

    If I were in your situation I would consider a few options:

    a) close-backed extension cabinet with an efficient speaker(s).
    b) more power.
    c) some research. What do guys that do lots of drop D and drop C use? I bet you'll see lots of bigger watt heads and closed-back 4-speaker cabinets.
    brbadg likes this.
  4. Whoa Tele

    Whoa Tele Tele-Afflicted

    Mar 20, 2009
    Smyrna Ga.
    I don't know the specs of the amp but would a used Excelsior work?
  5. jvin248

    jvin248 Poster Extraordinaire

    Apr 18, 2014
    Near Detroit, MI

    +1 on the 10inch setup. You could get a head unit and then a 4x10 for gigs and 1x10 for home.

    Some on this forum have had good luck with gigging:
    -Orange 35RT
    -Peavey Bandit

  6. Frodebro

    Frodebro Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Aug 17, 2012
    Bedroom levels, able to keep up with drums, medium breakup, no master volume...

    That's a pretty tall order. Without a MV, that medium breakup at bedroom volume is going to be full-on distorted at stage levels. Medium breakup at stage level would be crystal clean at bedroom levels.
    mad dog and PhredE like this.
  7. Dacious

    Dacious Poster Extraordinaire

    Mar 16, 2003
    I would say an Excelsior with a speaker change would feet close. No reverrb but it's one of those amps with harmonics like a Tweed or Marshall that almost doesn't need one.

    I'm almost done tweaking mine with 6G2 mods and I have to say - it opens the amp out - and then some!

    Perceptible volume increase. Nicer cleans, sizzling drive. Trem is dreamy.
  8. RoscoeElegante

    RoscoeElegante Friend of Leo's

    Feb 19, 2015
    The Excelsior Pro, with its efficient Eminence Legend 15" speaker, might work. It's a LOUD 13 watts. But you'd have to use a pedal for reverb; it's got only the on-board trem. And no footswitch for it, though that mod is doable. It also has a limited EQ range, with just a Hi/Lo switch that, however, sounds good when set in the middle. Very articulate lows, indeed.

    But I'd go with an external 15" cab for your Princeton since you like it. An inexpensive, easy option, since you can build your own cab. The Legend is very sensitive and loud. It will make the most of your Princeton's 12 watts. It handles big lows very crisply and is very even and musical overall, though it does take a while to break in. This way, you'd also hang onto what you like about the Princeton for those Neil Youngish growls. You could easily rig up switching between the Princeton's on-board speaker and the cab speaker. Good luck and post again about your choice and experience with it.
    PhredE likes this.
  9. chris m.

    chris m. Poster Extraordinaire

    If you go with a bigger amp you can always use a dirt pedal at home. For me I focus on a great gig tone and am not nearly as picky about tone at home low volume. But I find an amp that sounds great cranked also often sounds great with the right OD pedal goosing it at home.
  10. PhredE

    PhredE Tele-Meister

    Sep 25, 2017
    Suburban PDX, OR

    I'd just like to shed a little insight with regard to the speaker aspect.

    Apparently, the Princeton '68 uses the Celestion 10-30 speaker. It has a rather 'modest' efficiency rating of 95db. Most guitar speakers range from about 92db on the low end, up to about 103db for the widely produced units.

    As a reminder: **SPL level doubles with every (+3)db increase in speaker efficiency**.

    That means a speaker (regardless of it's physical size) that has an [accurate] efficiency rating of 98db is twice as loud as the Celestion 95db unit. As an example, the Eminence Legend 1518 (link below) has an efficiency rating of 102db. That means, the 1518 driver will be over four times as loud as the 95db Celestion in actual output SPL. A separate cabinet with a nice-sounding and efficient 15" driver will give much, much more volume -- and hopefully -- better tone as well. I love separate cabinets and have built many for myself and other players.

    Reference links:

    Fender Princeton '68

    Celestion 10-30 Speaker:

    Eminence Legend 1518 Has sensitivity of 102db+

    Eminence Red Coat Big Ben 15" is 101.5db
    RoscoeElegante likes this.
  11. PC_Hater

    PC_Hater Tele-Meister

    Aug 13, 2013
    Interesting! If I were the OP I would be getting one of those 1518 speakers, 'sounds' like it will do what he wants.
    PhredE likes this.
  12. LooseJack

    LooseJack Tele-Meister

    Feb 4, 2017
    transit lounge
    1) 15" Speakers need big cabs
    2) You don't need a 15" speaker
    3) Get a used 12" closed back cab, ideally with a throwaway speaker in it, replace with an Eminence Swamp Thang, push it with the Princeton
    4) If not loud enough, try a bigger amp (I doubt you will need to do this)
    RoscoeElegante, brbadg and PhredE like this.
  13. PhredE

    PhredE Tele-Meister

    Sep 25, 2017
    Suburban PDX, OR
    That is essentially what I do ( play modestly-powered amps into relatively big and efficient speakers). Having a boosted signal helps edge that amp output up a bit. Many people that hear the combinations can't believe it.

    In the chain of: guitar -> Joyo American Sound (nice amp emulation, and, a significant boost in itself) -> 10W amp -> solid pine cabinet having a 12" Swamp Thang or C-Rex ..the sound is huge! (at least considering the power, cost, etc).

    Speakers are cheap, amps are not.
    RoscoeElegante likes this.
  14. Dadzmad

    Dadzmad TDPRI Member

    Sep 17, 2014
    Wisconsin USA
    I've got an Excelsior Pro with a Russian EH 12AY7 in V1 that I use with a MIM Tele that has a Rose Buckaroo and Bourbon on it. I like the 15" in it. Does not seem to get swallowed when taken outside for a small gathering. Sounds good with my Kingpin too. Tube driven tremolo is sweet and swampy. I'm sure that most here have much better amps, but I got this as a close out dented floor model for 250 and I think it was a good value for that.

    But it does not turn down well and I mostly use it in my garage - I use a small Fender 90s SS amp with a nice speaker in the house during the winter so as not to disturb she who watches TV.
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2017
    Cliffyg62 likes this.
  15. mad dog

    mad dog Friend of Leo's

    Jun 27, 2005
    Montclair, NJ
    I don't "need" 15 inch speakers, but sure do love that sound. If the original poster does, then it's a good way to go.

    Too bad Dario Gomez is no longer building. His first amp was essentially a princeton type, only with truly ass whupping reverb, 1x15 format. David Allen (highly recommended) could certainly guide you to one of more perfect choices in his line up, based on your wish list.

    Not easy to get an amp flexible that way for home and stage, w/o master volume. I love that Vicky Victorilux Chris M. mentions. Wonderful amp, great call! I owned a Vicky Trem de la Trem. No reverb. Should have been the perfect amp for home and stage. Great sound, but not quite enough juice for a loud stage. Being a tweed appreciator, I keep looking. Bought Charlie Chitlin's Lil Dawg DLX, which has a custom Mather 1x15 - more or less tweed pro size, maybe a bit taller - with an Emi legend 1518. The DLX is a souped up tweed deluxe circuit, bigger iron, capable of taking 6L6s. I played tube games with this amp. Preamp and power. With 6v6s, this amp is allegedly 14 watts. Whether due to the larger iron and/or the efficient speaker, does not sound like it. This DLX is what I wanted the Trem de la Trem to be. Gotta keep it down at home. Playing with others, it's a glorious thing! No reverb, but I've lately used a couple favorite reverb pedals on any amp I play - with in amp reverb or no - so no issue for me.
  16. JukeJointJunkie

    JukeJointJunkie Tele-Meister

    Feb 13, 2016
    West Texas
  17. Bartholomew3

    Bartholomew3 Friend of Leo's

    Dec 8, 2010
    I had a Peavey Delta Blues with a 15 for about 10 years and it pretty much has everything you wanted. Not the greatest at really low volume but acceptable for home use, probably a matter of personal taste anyways.

    Has a Volume and gain but I kept it clean, used pedals - OD channel stinkos but was able to do club gigs with heavy drummers no problem using clean channel.
  18. texmck54

    texmck54 Tele-Meister

    Another vote for Peavey Delta Blues 115
  19. teleman55

    teleman55 Tele-Holic

    Jul 9, 2007
    fox lake, il
  20. Musekatcher

    Musekatcher Tele-Holic

    Delta Blues, just saw a tweed one like new, on CL for $250, or an Excelsior, similar price range.
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