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New Speaker Day: Rec Pro Audio Tweed Deluxe Speed Shop A12Q

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by theprofessor, Mar 30, 2019.

  1. theprofessor

    theprofessor Poster Extraordinaire

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    I have been wanting to try out a new speaker in my 5e3 clone for a little while, and I just received my Rec Pro Audio Tweed Deluxe Speed Shop A12Q from Weber (the assembler of the Speed Shop design). Most of the information I've seen on this speaker is from YouTube videos that Ron (Speed Shop) has on his 5e3s and on these speakers or on TGP. Not as much information here on TDPRI, and not a whole lot of information or reviews in general.

    It's going to take a while to get this thing broken in, so I'll continue to report on this thread as I hear it change.

    Rondo makes the dust covers himself, as the old-style Jensen covers with paper and felt in the middle are no longer made. He also sources the voice coils himself. Other than that, the cone looks to be identical to the cone Weber uses on the 12A125S -- the "early 60s 8 rib pulp cone that replaced the curved seam cone" (https://www.tedweber.com/12a125-s) I assume the magnet weight is also 11 oz. It has a 1.25" voice coil, and it is rated at 20W. There is no doping at all, either on the front or the back of the cone (in browsing Weber's 12" alnicos, it looks like you can no longer order Weber speakers with "no dope," but this comes without).

    I'd love to hear any impressions others who own this speaker have of it as a clone of a P12Q--especially in a 5e3.

    Here are some pics:
    IMG_1125.JPG IMG_1127.JPG IMG_1128.JPG IMG_1129.JPG
     
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2019
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  2. King Fan

    King Fan Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    Professor, you're a speaker-meister. I'm always impressed by your research.

    My guess is if Weber builds it and Ron thinks it's vintage-y in construction, you're on to something. I haven't gone far down the Speed Shop road, but it seems like you're using facts more than marketing in your thinking. Good stuff.

    As far as no dope, you should be fine if you don't torture the speaker. My brother the amp genius ran a no-dope 12a125a in his. Do you wear ear plugs when you play (I mean, does your audiologist wish you would)? Do you gig at noisy drunk clubs with my friend Bob the drummer? Do you break 13-ga strings on your Les Paul? If so, you will wish you had dope. But running a 20w speaker in a 15w amp, I doubt you do those things. (OK I forget if you upped your OT in this amp). Leo's 5e3 had speakers made out of tissue paper and fridge magnets compared to many modern speakers.

    I think you've done well. Let us know.
     
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  3. theprofessor

    theprofessor Poster Extraordinaire

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    Thanks, King Fan!

    I'm very impressed with it so far, and it's not broken in yet. I think that Rondo has put together the perfect EQ for a 5E3. Wonderful harmonics, and the mids are just right. Not too high, not too low. The high end is still quite bright, but that's to be expected on a brand-new speaker. And I like bright, anyway. I've had a few speakers with no dope: a re-coned P12P, a Weber Sig 12S, and now the A12Q. I tend to like them. Really responsive. And this speaker is a great combination of tonality and loudness. Not too loud, not too inefficient. Just right.

    I'll report back as I know more.
     
  4. theprofessor

    theprofessor Poster Extraordinaire

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    Played a 5e3 through this speaker some more. Here is what I think: this speaker *rocks.* It has the P12Q tonality but instead of resisting breakup (like many of the old Jensens seem to do) or getting flubby at higher volumes, it tightens up and gives you Marshall-like distortion with harmonics galore.

    Do you:
    - Want a modern speaker with the clean tonality of a vintage P12Q? - get an A12Q
    - Want a speaker that will make you want to keep playing your 5e3 at high volumes, pulling out whatever rock riffs you know? - get an A12Q
    - Want a speaker that offers singing sustain and an abundance of harmonics when pushed? - get an A12Q
    - Want a speaker that will interact with your 5e3 to give you gorgeous Marshall-like distortion? - get an A12Q

    More as I know more, and I'll see about getting some clips up at some point.
     
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  5. theprofessor

    theprofessor Poster Extraordinaire

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    I've played through this speaker now long enough to get it broken in just a bit. I gigged with it this weekend. In my opinion, this is the ultimate 5e3 speaker. Really. Everything is perfect. I'll see if I can get some short clips recorded this week.
     
  6. theprofessor

    theprofessor Poster Extraordinaire

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    Here's a chord progression that gives you a good sense of the basic tonality of the speaker with a Tele and a 5e3 on bright channel vol. 6, tone 7.5. Playing neck, then middle, then bridge. Neck pickup is SD SSL-5 Strat, bridge pickup is Cavalier Nashville Lion. Recorded directly to mini SD card on Zoom H2N condenser mics.

    More sound clips to come.

     
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  7. archetype

    archetype Fiend of Leo's

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    Not to lead this too far astray, but what is your opinion of the Weber Sig 12AS in your 5E2. I bought that Sig for my 5E3 build (not even started).
     
  8. theprofessor

    theprofessor Poster Extraordinaire

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    Here's another one. Same setup, but this time bright vol. on 9, tone on 10. Gives you an idea of something bluesy and twangy and lo-fi sounding:

     
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  9. theprofessor

    theprofessor Poster Extraordinaire

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    And here's the last one with Cavalier Nashville Lion bridge pickup only. Distortion is au naturel.

     
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  10. theprofessor

    theprofessor Poster Extraordinaire

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    I just got an alnico Sig 12S not too long ago, and I tried it out in my 5e3 and really liked it. It is more "old-school" sounding. It's under-powered, and it doesn't give a lot of bass (which I liked, actually). It's even less efficient than the A12Q, but it breaks up a little later. The voice coil on the alnico 12S is 1/4" smaller, the cone is different (curved and seamed, like the 60's style), and the dust cap is different as well. But it's a really nice, authentic tone for home playing. I don't think it would keep up with a band.

    The A12Q is louder (though not crazy loud like some Webers), fuller, and also tighter, with slightly earlier breakup. It has a more modern distortion sound. It translates the distortion characteristics of the 5e3, but it doesn't flub out. Ever.
     
  11. archetype

    archetype Fiend of Leo's

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    Thanks for the info. I'd done my research and the 12AS seemed right for home use. CJ at Weber confirmed that it would be good for my situation and said it didn't need dope to work right in the 5E3. I'll know first-hand if I ever complete my build.
     
  12. theprofessor

    theprofessor Poster Extraordinaire

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    I completely agree. And I like the fact that it's not doped. It's a great speaker. 5e3 tones without blowing the lid off.
     
  13. mherrcat

    mherrcat Tele-Holic

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    Just ordered one myself!
    :)
     
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  14. theprofessor

    theprofessor Poster Extraordinaire

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    Update: I am totally settled with the sound of my 5e3 now. The Tweed Deluxe Speed Shop A12Q capped everything off for me. What a fantastic speaker.

    I finally got the sense to run my 6g2 brown Princeton clone through it with my P-90 Les Paul. IT WILL MAKE YOU WEEP. This is not just a tweed Deluxe speaker. It turns a healthy brown Princeton into a little fire-breather. Not spiky in the highs, not harsh in the mids, holds together really well, and drives like a Marshall. HOLY MOLEY.
     
  15. baiff

    baiff Tele-Holic

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    Now that I live in Florida I really need to make it down to his shop and check out those amps of his.
     
  16. theprofessor

    theprofessor Poster Extraordinaire

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    I think they're awfully expensive, but they sure do sound good!
     
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