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Sound dispersion of 10” speakers vs 12” and 1 vs more speakers

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by 69ChevyP/U, Jul 12, 2018.

  1. 69ChevyP/U

    69ChevyP/U TDPRI Member

    23
    Oct 26, 2013
    pacific nw
    I have read many threads that talk about 10’s vs 12’s. I am also wondering about small amps with just one speaker vs bigger amps. My 82 Champ II has a single upgraded 10” whereas for instance my Super has 4.
    The small 18w amp gets very loud, but the sound dispersion of the larger cab and more speakers makes all the difference. Would it be the same if you just miked up the small amp? My gut vibe is that my back likes small amps and my ears and body feel bigger ones better. Does that make any sense? One speaker amps hit direct like a dagger? - 12’s cut and 10’s sing??

    What do you think?
    What is your experience?

    Cheers
     
  2. Old Tele man

    Old Tele man Friend of Leo's

    May 10, 2017
    Tucson, AZ
    1) DIA - More is better.

    2) SPKR - More is better, better.


    Basically, it comes down to surface area moving more air.
     
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  3. JustABluesGuy

    JustABluesGuy Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    61
    Sep 2, 2016
    Houston, TX
    These are all generalizations from my own non-vast experience. You are going to “feel” higher wattage amps more than low wattage amp because of shear volume regardless of speakers.

    Single speakers are “more or less” a point source, that will not suffer from the effects of comb filtering as multiple speakers do. Vertically oriented cabs will reduce comb filtering problems greatly.

    Do a google search for “line arrays” for more info on the subject.

    Smaller speakers have wider dispersion than larger speakers (less beaminess).

    10” speakers tend to have tighter bass than 12s, but 12s tend to have slightly lower (deeper) bass response. 12s tend to have higher power handling than 10s as well.

    I’ve settled on vertical 2x10 convertable back cabs as my preference.
     
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  4. 69ChevyP/U

    69ChevyP/U TDPRI Member

    23
    Oct 26, 2013
    pacific nw
    That makes sense. My super sounds huge and like it is everywhere. I had a 100w head and a 50w head at the same time and the 100w was not twice as loud, but it sure moved the earth. You could physically feel the air hit your chest. Your playing better be tight at that level because every tiny little nuance good or bad is everywhere all the sudden. I have never played any small amp that was as touch sensitive as a 100w Head.
    So- I’m really trying for a small amp that doesn’t sound small. Two opposite ends of the spectrum I know.. One speaker feels too small & limited unless mic’d. IMO
     
  5. nojazzhere

    nojazzhere Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    66
    Feb 3, 2017
    Foat Wuth, Texas
    Not sure if this is applicable to your question, but refer to the Bose 802 PA speakers.....eight 4" (or 5") speakers in each enclosure, and they sound HUGE. I built a fourX8" speaker box ( not particularly special speakers, out of Vox PF15Rs) and it sounds better than two 12"s.
    Edit: The Bose 802s apparently use a 4 1/2" speaker.
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
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  6. JustABluesGuy

    JustABluesGuy Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    61
    Sep 2, 2016
    Houston, TX
    Right? I’ve seen several different high end audio speakers with 8 or more tiny speakers in them.

    There is power in numbers!
     
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  7. 69ChevyP/U

    69ChevyP/U TDPRI Member

    23
    Oct 26, 2013
    pacific nw
    Phil Jones bass amps
     
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  8. BigDaddyLH

    BigDaddyLH Telefied Ad Free Member

    That's the phil-osophy of Phil Jones Bass Amps. 24 5" speakers:

    [​IMG]

    The top can handle 800W, the bottom 1600W.
     
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  9. Old Tele man

    Old Tele man Friend of Leo's

    May 10, 2017
    Tucson, AZ
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
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  10. bftfender

    bftfender Tele-Afflicted

    Dec 21, 2017
    York PA
    years of trial and error..my rig is closed back 2 x12 on top celestion V30 & Gt 75 and bottom cab semi open 2x12 celestion type v & 35 yr old 60 watt greenie..it is full punchy..loud..quiet..death metal or neck pup jazz gigs... plexi2.jpg
     
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  11. peteb

    peteb Friend of Leo's

    Apr 25, 2003
    Cascadia
    Billy Idol:


    “In the midnight hour, she cried ____, _____, ______”


    Is that the rule with speakers? More, more, more.



    I did some comparing yester day of different speakers with a bassman on volume 3.




    The C12N kicked the arse of the P8R. Why?


    I’m sure the diameter made a big difference.


    What about R speakers versus N when neither one is being pushed?





    Fender made their name on the R speaker. Early pro amps, the 59 bassman, all champs and Princeton’s. Tweed deluxe?




    Is the R speaker flawed? More quantities of R speakers make them sound like N speakers? How?






    Not meaning to side track, I think this is part of the overall question.
     
  12. Vizcaster

    Vizcaster Friend of Leo's

    Sep 15, 2007
    Glen Head, NY
    Title of the thread asks about "dispersion." PA cabinet specs will demonstrate that a 10" PA cabinet will have a wider angle of dispersion, in other words a more useful spread left and right of the speaker, compared to a 12" speaker cabinet, and 15's are even more directional. So bigger speakers work well when the listener is farther away so it's not wasting sound out to the extreme sides. Smaller rooms would benefit from a smaller speaker if the listener is up close but potentially off to the side.

    Practically speaking in a guitar cabinet, smaller speakers will have lighter magnets - it adds up.
     
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  13. schmee

    schmee Friend of Leo's

    Jun 2, 2003
    northwest
    That's interesting, kinda flyies in the face of logic, but would be interesting to see the data. I was thinking if you compared a 10 and 12 physically, and IF they were both the same DEPTH, a 10" cone would be projecting a narrower beam of sound. As the included angle of the cone is narrower.
     
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  14. Vizcaster

    Vizcaster Friend of Leo's

    Sep 15, 2007
    Glen Head, NY
    I've never seen a 10" guitar amp speaker that's the same depth as a 12".
     
  15. luckett

    luckett Friend of Leo's

    Jun 14, 2011
    .
    Speaker dispersion has nothing to do with cone depth. It's a function of speaker diameter.
     
  16. Mr Green Genes

    Mr Green Genes Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 23, 2016
    MI
    .

    To answer your initial question: in general, a smaller speaker will have better dispersion than a larger speaker.

    You mentioned that you horned a 10" speaker into a Champ. You're far from the first person to put a bigger speaker into a combo, but in my experience, it's a misguided effort.

    The speaker cabinet has a huge impact on the voice of the amp, and they're almost universally too small for the speaker they contain (for economic reasons).

    Trying to squeeze an even bigger speaker into a cabinet that's already too small is bound to be a let-down. I'd rather have a smaller speaker in a larger enclosure than a larger speaker in a smaller enclosure.

    There's a lot more to a speaker than just its diameter. It always confuses me to see people asking about whether to go with a 10" speaker or a 12" speaker, without regard for any other parameters.

    There are 10" speakers that may suit your needs, just as there are 12" speakers that may suit your needs. At the same time, there are many speakers in both 10" and 12" sizes that may not suit your needs.

    An efficient 10" speaker will be louder than an inefficient 12" speaker, and vice-versa.

    For anyone trying to make the claim that anything smaller than a 12" speaker can't handle the bass frequencies, I invite them to measure the speakers in their studio monitors (unless, of course, you're using cans in the studio).

    The 6" subwoofer in my car handles frequencies below the audio threshold, far below anything a guitar will produce.

    If a speaker doesn't handle the lower frequencies, it's due to the design of the speaker and its enclosure, not because it's a 10" speaker rather than a 12" speaker.



    .
     
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  17. 69ChevyP/U

    69ChevyP/U TDPRI Member

    23
    Oct 26, 2013
    pacific nw
    My 1982 Fender Champ II (Rivera amp) came stock with a 10”. It was simply upgraded With an Eminence 1058. Misguided? I don’t know about that ;)
     
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  18. Mr Green Genes

    Mr Green Genes Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 23, 2016
    MI
    .


    The comment was about squeezing larger speakers into smaller cabinets in general.

    On a side note, if you think Fender or any other manufacturer makes design decisions based purely on sound quality, you're simply mistaken.

    Also worth noting that most people who have early 80s Champ IIs (which is a very nice amp) say they get the best tone out of it by using extension cabs. Also, if the stock 10" speaker was doing what you wanted it to, why the need to "upgrade" to the Eminence? ;)


    .
     
  19. Dacious

    Dacious Poster Extraordinaire

    Mar 16, 2003
    Godzone
    When looking to purchase new PA speakers ( and with experience of EWA-designed Mackie 15" 65lb 850 watt B-class bipowered enclosures and EV LX15P 30lb class-D enclosures) I auditioned a range of speakers 10-12-15 premised on vocal clarity and detail. EVs, Mackie's, JBLs, QSCs, German, DAP.

    I ended up buying 20lb Alto TS210As. Same 550w RMS/1100w amp module as the bigger 12s and 15s. On paper the 15s are 1db spl more efficient than the 12s which are 2 db more than the 10s.

    In the room, for vocal freqs the 10s are superior for clarity and definition. Regardless of volume and in a small space especially. If you wanted to mic the whole band the 15s are good but can struggle with vocal separation.

    My friend has the 15s and has borrowed mine for a big gig - he said, there's a palpable difference in the same eqs and settings. The 10s seem to rule in the frequency range for voice, if you just run voice through your FOH.

    That's my experience. Also, I own an 84 Super Champ of the same era, power section transformer, speaker as the Champ II. Eminence 10 (or EV10L in the Deluxe version) and it has no problem nominally holding it's own with an efficient speaker. No lack of bass, no lack of volume.

    Last two nights in rehearsal with a 65 watt H&K 212, last night 100watt JCM900 212. Both those amps have less than stellar OEM speakers

    Both guys commented how punchy it is for a single 10. I had no issue being heard at a drummer-with-headroom volume.
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2018
  20. 69ChevyP/U

    69ChevyP/U TDPRI Member

    23
    Oct 26, 2013
    pacific nw
    It’s a common thing folks do with the Super Champ or Champ II. Some of the Super Champs came with an upgraded speaker as an option as I understand it. Extension cabs are always an option. Lotta guys go with the 1x12. Two ten vertical with removable back sounds interesting..
     
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