80s Fender ( Eminence ) Special Design. Like or Dislike?

Neptical

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G'day All.

I have three 80s Fender 1x12 combos ( 2 SS, 1 tube) with these Fender Eminence speakers in them. Seems like there's some unfavorable reviews out there. I have to be honest, these speakers are sounding absolutely fantastic to me. I'm mostly using my amps as clean pedal platforms. I like a fat bottom end in which these speakers are holding up to with absolutely ZERO flub with lots of volume. Still, the cleans are sparkling and chimey with no break-up.

By default on reviews, I was looking at replacing these with either: Rajun Cajun, Swamp Thang, Celestion Gold or Texas Heat. I would use my EVs but downgrading is my destination.

Any fans out here who've kept the Fender Special Designs in who were completely satisfied? They have this SUPER nice spongy, thick/fullness that neither of the speakers in my 4x12 or 2x12 speakers have.
 
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Neptical

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Eminence like all speaker makers has better and lesser offerings. If it's good, it's good. The Legend is Eminence's self-badged version of a Fender OEM speaker.
Variably, it just depends on the taste of what each individual is going for. Though, never tried the Legend, it seems like a good speaker for a BF style amp as well the other speakers I mentioned. If I could, I would just throw an EV12L in there - but lightweight is my destination.
 

JustABluesGuy

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G'day All.

I have three 80s Fender 1x12 combos ( 2 SS, 1 tube) with these Fender Eminence speakers in them. Seems like there's some unfavorable reviews out there. I have to be honest, these speakers are sounding absolutely fantastic to me. I'm mostly using my amps as clean pedal platforms. I like a fat bottom end in which these speakers are holding up to with absolutely ZERO flub with lots of volume. Still, the cleans are sparkling and chimey with no break-up.

By default on reviews, I was looking at replacing these with either: Rajun Cajun, Swamp Thang, Celestion Gold or Texas Heat. I would use my EVs but downgrading is my destination.

Any fans out here who've kept the Fender Special Designs in who were completely satisfied? They have this SUPER nice spongy, thick/fullness that neither of the speakers in my 4x12 or 2x12 speakers have.

I have been happy with my Eminence speakers and I have more Eminence speakers than any other brand. I don’t think I have ever had more than one OEM model with Emis, and it was quite good.

As I understand it (someone please correct me if I am wrong) Fender “Special design” speakers are OEM speakers designed and manufactured to Fender’s specifications, and those specs can vary from one company to another and even from one model of amp to another. I doubt Fender used just one model of Eminence speakers for every amp in their lineup, so it might be hard to compare apples to apples.

As far as Eminence making speakers to the requested specs of amp manufacturers, either Fender often had high spec requirements (I have heard they often used the cheapest parts possible, but that’s just heresay) or Eminence had high standards along with low cost, because I have not often heard of stock Eminence speakers sounding any worse than stock speakers from other manufacturers.

I am very happy with my eminence speakers though they aren’t “Special Design” specifically.
 

Chiogtr4x

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I'm an Eminence fan,
When I owned my old Pro Reverb, I had Emi alnico 12"s in it.

With Blues Jr., first the Emi stock speaker, but swapped out ( for the lightweight) to a Neo Lil' Texas ( clean and powerful)

Had a Red, White, and Blues in my '68 Deluxe Reverb
- sadly the Pro and DR are gone

And now gig with a Fender Frontman 25R with an Emi Legend 1058, 10", and just absolutely love this amp w/ the Legend

* with me it was always balancing good tone with value
 

King Fan

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Yes, I'm under the impression 'Special Design' covers a lot of different speakers. If yours sound good to you, they’re good. If not, I always say 'which speaker' threads are like 'which fiancée' threads. What are you going for here? Weight? Volume? Bass? Chime? Breakup? Touch? Alnico / ceramic? And what amps are we talking about?
 
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JustABluesGuy

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Variably, it just depends on the taste of what each individual is going for. Though, never tried the Legend, it seems like a good speaker for a BF style amp as well the other speakers I mentioned. If I could, I would just throw an EV12L in there - but lightweight is my destination.

If light weight is your main concern, I would look into alnico or neo speakers.
 

PhredE

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I have one from about 1990, it's the blue black 12" with the (approx.) 38oz magnet.

It's 'ok' soundwise. Not bad per se, but most of the other speakers I have I think sound better.
One thing to keep in mind about those, is that Fender (Eminence) tried to make it a jack-of-all-trades and sound decent to a variety of players in a variety of amps. Not many speakers pull that off all that well.
 

Chiogtr4x

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If light weight is your main concern, I would look into alnico or neo speakers.
Just an Emi comment:
I may be hallucinating on this,
but I think I read, a few years back, that the Emi Neo Lil' Texas 12" ( a speaker I put in my BJ, when that speaker first came out- for the super- light weight & good reviews) is actually spec'd to duplicate the response and volume of those massive JBL 12's that Fender put in Twin Reverbs. Go figure, if true!

It is a 120 watter, and my 15W BJ ( though not using now) is LOUD and clear.
 

schmee

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I like them. Generally. Depends, many are built for the amp maker so may not be 100% like a stock speaker. But have that "fat bottom end"
I had a red knob Twin with those and they were killer speakers. So much so when I sold the Red Knob I kept the speakers! They are gone now but yes, nice speakers.
 

roeg

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CTS in my 1979 Vibrolux. I've gig'd it a lot. Cranked it, now mostly home play. Not a bad tone i can recall in 40 years. I believe i have eminence(replacements) in my 1961 Super. I have to check...
 

Dacious

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Fender Special Design is indeed a sticker that's applied to any brand. I've seen it on Jensen (68 Vibrochamp) CTS (80 Vibrolux) and Eminence (83 Superchamp) and the Eminence in my Superchamp is the same part number but bigger voicecoil than earlier ones - possibly even a production error or substitution for ordered ones as mine is a very.late build. .

Anthony from Eminence told me that the OEM orders certain size coil, magnet and resonant freq and 'owns' the spec. Eminence may not even be aware what amp.itbwas going in..

Eminence often gets questions on old OEM speakers and can't really provide more than general answers. They can guess based on voicecoil and magnet size but it's not certain because the manufacturer did their own tests and ratings in product development.
 

Jared Purdy

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G'day All.

I have three 80s Fender 1x12 combos ( 2 SS, 1 tube) with these Fender Eminence speakers in them. Seems like there's some unfavorable reviews out there. I have to be honest, these speakers are sounding absolutely fantastic to me. I'm mostly using my amps as clean pedal platforms. I like a fat bottom end in which these speakers are holding up to with absolutely ZERO flub with lots of volume. Still, the cleans are sparkling and chimey with no break-up.

By default on reviews, I was looking at replacing these with either: Rajun Cajun, Swamp Thang, Celestion Gold or Texas Heat. I would use my EVs but downgrading is my destination.

Any fans out here who've kept the Fender Special Designs in who were completely satisfied? They have this SUPER nice spongy, thick/fullness that neither of the speakers in my 4x12 or 2x12 speakers have.

I can't speak to the 80's Eminence Special Design speakers but I can speak to the Eminence Special Design that's in my quite new (2020) 57' Custom Deluxe: Fabulous. I bought that amp new and used it for a while, and had been doing some reading on replacement speakers for the 65 PRRI and the 64' Custom Hand Wired PR.

As I have the 64', Hand Wired which comes with the same Jenson P10Q (or is it R?) that's in the 65 PRRI, which has terrible bass control, I was directed (by a TDPRI member) towards the Eminence GA10-SC64, designed by George Alessandro as per 64' specs from the original speakers. I took a chance on one, and was blown away at the improvement. It's now in my 64', and it's staying there.

I was so blown away that I decided to give the the Eminence GA SC59 (12"), also designed by him, a shot in the 57' Deluxe. As good as it sounded, I thought the Special Design sounded better, so I sold the GA SC59, and kept the stock, Special Design. I hope that helps with your inquiry.
 

Neptical

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So from what I've gathered, Fender (Emi) Special Designs were a lot of different Emi models with those same blue labels. Basically, Fender was using whatever that they could get their hands on. Sounds about right as it seems to coincide with some of those speakers sounding fantastic and some duds.
 

Dacious

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So from what I've gathered, Fender (Emi) Special Designs were a lot of different Emi models with those same blue labels. Basically, Fender was using whatever that they could get their hands on. Sounds about right as it seems to coincide with some of those speakers sounding fantastic and some duds.
Not just from Eminence. I had the Clapton Vibrochamp which is the 5F1 handwired with additional tremolo circuit That comes with a Weber Signature straight cone alnico with an FSD sticker..

Eminence may be their current main supplier but not their only.
 

Neptical

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Not just from Eminence. I had the Clapton Vibrochamp which is the 5F1 handwired with additional tremolo circuit That comes with a Weber Signature straight cone alnico with an FSD sticker..

Eminence may be their current main supplier but not their only.

As per thread title, I'm talking specifically about the 80s Eminence ( 67 code ).
 

uriah1

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Never liked the c12k but the blue 10s were not bad. Dont think they make anymore.
 

Dacious

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As per thread title, I'm talking specifically about the 80s Eminence ( 67 code ).
There was also Utah, CTS was also still supplying the square magnet and odd ohmage 4, 32ohm stuff although mostly for SS or non guitar amps. You could still option JBLs in the Rivera era, I've seen a Concert with the grey speaker and badge. And of course the Rivera era 6V6 amps like the Superchamp you could get the EV 10M.

It's true though the 'standard' would have mostly have been Eminence.
 




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