Replacement Speaker for 79 Deluxe Reverb

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by Unadan, Feb 26, 2015.

  1. Unadan

    Unadan Tele-Holic

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    I have a 1979 Deluxe Reverb that has the stock Fender special design speaker made by CTS. It sounds pretty good but is lacking a bit in clarity, definition, and sparkle - even when compared to a SF DR with a Utah speaker.

    I'm just about ready to purchase a WGS G12C speaker. The G12C is based on the vintage Jensen C12N. There is also a WGS G12C/S - smooth cone version that also seems to be a popular replacement speaker for a DR style amp.

    Does anyone here have direct experience with both the G12C and G12C/S? I'm inclined at this point to get the standard G12C based on the reviews I've read so far. Thanks!
     
  2. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Unadan, I gotta ask....has the amp been recapped? IF not, ime, there will be diminished sparkle, there will be inarticulate lows---loose with out of tune subharmonics, and the amp will not have that '3-D sonic stage that a healthy DR should have. Throwing tubes and/or speakers at amps that have old e-caps in them is, imho, a waste of time. that said....
    If the amp has been recapped and is in proper running condition, then one can judge the speaker fairly. I know what speakers I like in a DR. Classic DR?? I might want a real C12Q from 1965 or so....or a good clone of such. The C12R was the standard, as well as the Oxford...but a C12Q slipped into a DR once in a while. A C12N or a clone thereof would/should be big, bold, and strong in a DR. IF you were looking for that classic sound but at diminished volume, the 1966 and later low-efficiency Oxford 12T or L is a great speaker. You can push the amp harder. That is the 'quiet' approach. IF you are looking for all the volume you can get out of that amp, then look for a high efficiency speaker. IF that is what I wanted, I would use the Eminence Legend GB128....their first British cone speaker. Great speaker in a BF/SF Fender, ime....big bottom end, smooth top end--especially when pushed, and a warm woody midrange. big volume....102-103db, IIRC.
    Lots of speakers....I have a few lying around that would bring a dR to life...Altec Lansing's, D120F JBL's, EV, that vintage C12Q. I need an empty DR!!! LOL
     
  3. Unadan

    Unadan Tele-Holic

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    Yes this DR has been re-capped and recently serviced so there should be no issues there.
     
  4. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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    There you go....good luck on the speaker search. I have heard good thigns about the WGS G12C...but I haven't heard one. So, I can't be your witness there. Soemoen will chime in, though. I liek the Emi GB128 in Fender amps...a lot!
     
  5. Unadan

    Unadan Tele-Holic

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    I spoke with an amp tech just a few minutes ago. He recommended the G12C (not the smooth cone version) or a Weber California with paper dome. He leaned towards the Weber vs. the WGS. Any thoughts on this?
     
  6. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Teh California is a JBL clone. I have ordered it with paper cones before...went into a SFTR. Good results. I woudl order a cloth dust cover if I wanted another one of these. From WEber, I imght prefer the Michigan, which is their take on an EV. In either case, I would go with the Alnico versions if those are offered. The Emi GB128 is cheaper.....and like I said....I have never heard anything but positive results in a bF/SF Fender. I first bought them for a Pro rEverb....I ordered two more immediately for a '66 BNF Pro REverb I had that was carrying the low efficiency Oxfords....doubled the voluem of the map...and much better sonics. I like the Emi GB.....but dont' let me persuade you. (;^)
     
  7. jondanger

    jondanger Poster Extraordinaire

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    The Weber California is based on a JBL and is going to be bright bright bright. It will increase the clean headroom too. I have a G10C and G10C/S in my Vibrolux and I like them a lot. Still pretty efficient but has that characteristic Fender (Jensen) sound.

    I like JBLs, but I don't know if I would want one in a DR. The paper dome would take the highs a little bit, but I still think you'd be looking at highs bordering on strident.

    Has the bias circuit been blackfaced from the bias balance to the standard fixed bias? If not I think it's a good move. Your unsatisfying sound might be the result of chronic cold biasing due to the poor design of the late SF bias circuit.
     
  8. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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    IIRC, the DR never lost the bias voltage adjustment circuit. Fender didn't go to the balancing thing in the DR...nor in the Vibrolux Reverb, IIRC> These two amps alos never got the MV or the ultra linear treatment. My memeory may be in error.....
     
  9. Ted M

    Ted M Tele-Afflicted

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    I've tried both, and prefer the G12C in a Deluxe Reverb. I also love their ET65. I've also tried a Weber Cali, but I found it to be kind of sterile sounding.
     
  10. MilwMark

    MilwMark Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    What do you want out of the speaker? I ask because initially you asked about two speakers that I have no experience with. But it seems like you are broadening your search.

    Maybe consider the Eminence Cannabis Rex. I put one in my '78 SFDR. It is amazing.

    Clear, detailed, full but not flubby lows. No icepick. Seems to add a bit of gentle midrange presence. Responsive. It is also LOUD. That could be a good thing or a bad thing. When I put mine in, I was able to get more volume on 4 than I was on 7 previously. Part of that might be because I was able to turn the Bass up to 3 and the Treble up to 6 (previously on 1.5 and 4, respectively). But that means the amp isn't breaking up as much as it was before. For me that's a good thing. I get clean sustain where before I had dirty sustain.

    Anyway, it's a great speaker in the DR circuit, depending on your needs. I like it so much I just put one in my old Gibson Lancer. Very different circuit. similarly great fit and results. It just excels at shaving off icepick while retaining detail, and sounding full without flubbing out.

    Good luck in your search.
     
  11. jondanger

    jondanger Poster Extraordinaire

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    Just looked at some layouts. My mistake, you're right about the bias circuit, but the '77-'79 do have a pull boost I think. No master volume obviously.

    The vibrolux did get the bias balance in '68. At least my '68 had it - but not relevant to this thread.

    So disregard my bias circuit suggestion is the takeaway here!
     
  12. Silverface

    Silverface Poster Extraordinaire Platinum Supporter

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    Weber's California is a great speaker (I have a couple) but IMO unless you want very high headroom it might not be the best DR choice. I put one in my '76 and while it really projected well with a consistent frequency range (i.e. no mid hump or scoop) it had to be run a very high volume (for a DR) to "warm up". The DR's usual early breakup is there electronically but the speaker doesn't really let it loose until it's significantly louder than with stock-type DR speaker (like Wally I like the Oxford - and have had ecellent results with CTS).

    The Cal is also very heavy.

    However, if you're "speaker chasing" it and the WGS are inexpensive enough to not kill your wallet! I've also heard of good results with the Celestion GTM-65 and the WGS version, the ET-65.

    Two questions regarding the service that was done - what tubes are in it and have you (if you know how) tried different bias settings? Preamp tubes can change the voicing, and power tube bias makes a huge difference in overall sound (DR's are normally biased fairly cold from the factory, and if not tweaked when retubed the amp can sound veyr "flat").

    If one speaker doesn't significantly change the sound I'd look at changing tone and coupling caps before going on a more extended speaker hunt. Many techs will service an amp to ensure it's working properly - but not for any tonal purposes. Unless you communicated what you were looking for soundwise from the amp, the normal service is replacing electrolytic caps, cleaning pots/jacks and making sure there are no stray noises/hiss/hum. If it works, it's done.

    SOME will check output tube bias; few will touch preamp tubes at all unless theere's a problem. "Amp service" has dozens of definitions...I recommend always specifying exactly what you want done and checked.

    Good luck!
     
  13. MilwMark

    MilwMark Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I'm not sure that they all do. Mine's a '78 (I think, I don't get too caught up in that stuff but that date sticks in my head) and it never had one.
     
  14. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I stand corrected....I could have looked. the VR got the bias balancing thing in the AC568 circuit. Yes, the DR and the VR got the pull boost...but no other changes came to those amps...no MV, no UL circuit. The VR is the only 6L6 Fender that did not undergo those more severe changes.
     
  15. Unadan

    Unadan Tele-Holic

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    Silverface - the amp was serviced shortly before I purchased it. The last owner arranged the service - I've spoken directly to the tech that did the work - he replaced some of the caps - did not do the filter caps because they had previously been replaced with Spragues. This tech has a great rep and I trust his judgement and the work he did. The preamp tubes have fender labels on them although they appear old. It has newer JJ 6V6 power tubes.

    I called WGS and spoke to them quite a bit - I ordered their G12C speaker with light dope. It should be a good match for the tone I'm looking for (I hope). Cost is less than $100.

    I may track down another NOS RCA 12ax7 and get that into the V2 position as well. Checking the bias is a great idea too although I know this was recently checked when it was in for service. Thanks for all the opinions!
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2015
  16. ExiledonMainSt

    ExiledonMainSt Tele-Meister

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    You'll like it. I think the G12C/S would have been a bit dark.
     
  17. Unadan

    Unadan Tele-Holic

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    Thanks. I've never replaced a speaker in a DR before. Do I have to remove the chassis to safely install the new speaker or can I just remove both back panels and the reverb tank?
     
  18. ExiledonMainSt

    ExiledonMainSt Tele-Meister

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    Nah. Just the back panels, maybe the reverb tank, I can't remember. Probably a good idea to pull the big tubes as well, just to avoid bumping them.
     
  19. Unadan

    Unadan Tele-Holic

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    Thanks - I noticed that the original speaker that is in there now does not have the mounting nuts installed on the top two screws the speaker is sitting on. I'm assuming this is not ideal?
     
  20. ExiledonMainSt

    ExiledonMainSt Tele-Meister

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    Huh. Not ideal at all. I'm surprised a tech could overlook that. You want the speaker tightened equally at all 4 mounting studs; use a star pattern in increments similar to what you'd do when tightening a wheel on a car. Incorrect mounting is one of the biggest causes of voice coil failure. Be careful not to over tighten - you don't need to bust out a torque wrench or anything; I usually finger-tighten, and then give it another quarter turn or so with a socket to make sure it's snug.
     
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