1. Win a Broadcaster or one of 3 Teles! The annual Supporting Member Giveaway is on. To enter Click Here. To see all the prizes and full details Click Here. To view the thread about the giveaway Click Here.

School me on CTS speakers

Discussion in 'Amp Tech Center' started by vintagelove, Nov 30, 2014.

  1. vintagelove

    vintagelove Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    395
    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2014
    Location:
    NY
    Hi, first off any help would be much appreciated.

    I would like to know how to tell what CTS speakers are suitable for installing in a blackface fender. I am aware of the manufacturer and date codes. In other words what is the difference between the cts speakers pulled from an old organ, and the ones that would be found in an old Fender.

    Also, any thoughts on combining a pair of vintage Jensen c10r's (which sound nothing like the modern ones i have heard) with a pair of cts? Amp will be used mostly for recording, I figure I can mic both speakers and use which fits the song better.

    FWIW the best super reverb tone I ever heard was below, the amp had mojotone speakers (anyone know what they really were?)



    Thanks
     
    52tele69 likes this.
  2. uriah1

    uriah1 Telefied Gold Supporter

    Posts:
    22,557
    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2011
    Location:
    Around
    I have some blue CTS 10 in my super reverb..that are the best pound for pound speakers
    ever. I also have a 12 CTS in a Gibson amp, circa 64.that is ok...Not sure if contained in code, but, generally, on older speakers, the larger the mag, the better the build. I remember I had some old organ speakers, that I could pickup with 1 finger. Mag was about 8 oaz. But, that said, I had a new jensen 12 that sounds better than the old CTS12 when cranked..but at low volume, the CTS12 sounds good...
    wish you luck..
     
  3. charlie chitlin

    charlie chitlin Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Age:
    59
    Posts:
    15,725
    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2003
    Location:
    Kimberton
    Lots of organ donor (har!) speakers in guitar amps.
    AFAIK, there's little/no difference.
    I'm not an expert on this stuff, and don't do it often enough to have good data, but the couple times I've used an out-of-the-ordinary speaker that didn't sound good, it was a smooth cone.
    It could be a coincidence and they sounded crappy for other reasons...but I've also noticed that guitar-specific speakers have ribbed cones.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2014
  4. 6942

    6942 Poster Extraordinaire

    Age:
    67
    Posts:
    6,333
    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2006
    Location:
    Santa Fe, NM
    They were made in Kentucky, until Eminence bought their old plant.
    They also were quite popular as drivers in hifi speakers, powered by mono and stereo tube amplifiers.
    I used to have a large round ceramic magnet, 12" CTS speaker, that was similar to a Jensen C12N.....nice!
     
  5. vintagelove

    vintagelove Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    395
    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2014
    Location:
    NY
    Thanks for the replies, looking forward to hearing more!!!
     
  6. muchxs

    muchxs Doctor of Teleocity

    Posts:
    13,171
    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2004
    Location:
    New England
    While there is a CTS / Eminence connection...

    CTS is an acronym for Chicago Telephone Supply. I don't know the precise corporate history but I do know that CTS took over speaker production for Magnavox in '62. Speakers that were previously Magnavox show up with CTS 137 codes circa 1962. Same baskets, same magnets, same voice coils, same cones.

    Magnavox in turn is the original Peter Jensen speaker company. Yeah, that Peter Jensen.

    The brief history:

    1915: First moving coil loudspeaker as we know it.

    1917: Changed the company name to "Magnavox".

    1925: Jensen resigned as Magnavox's chief engineer.

    1927: Jensen founded the Jensen Radio Manufacturing Company, "Jensen Speakers" as we know it.

    1940: Jensen resigned as the president of Jensen Radio.

    So: Jensen and Magnavox chugged along as parallel companies. Magnavox eventually became a manufacturer of a broad range of consumer electronics including radios, televisions and phonographs.

    Similar to Jensen's departure from Magnavox in 1925, frequently when engineers parted company with speaker manufacturers they went on to found their own speaker companies.

    Which brings us back to the CTS / Magnavox / Eminence connection:

    1966: After building speakers at CTS / Magnavox Bob Gault started his own speaker company in Eminence, Kentucky. Circa 1966 Eminence built three speakers per day to supply Ampeg.

    CTS continued speaker manufacturing post- '66, thus the CTS speakers in Fender amps trough the mid- '70s. While not quite as nice for the most part as the Jensens found in much of Fender's line, the CTS alnicos found in Super Reverbs are the exception. They're relatively exceptional.

    The ceramic magnet CTS speakers found in MusicMaster Bass amps... not so much.

    Kustom used CTS speakers in the early '70s as did numerous organ manufacturers. It's a shame the ribbed cone alnico magnet 12" speakers found in organs in the early '70s didn't make it into Fender amps. Not as original parts, anyway. :D
     
    Vibrolux59 and Wally like this.
  7. Mr Ridesglide

    Mr Ridesglide Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    2,125
    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2009
    Location:
    Bloomington, MN
    I just happened upon an organ with a 15" CTS ceramic 8 ohm- it had two 5u4gb rectifiers and two large power tubes - 7027a. The organ was a conn and also had a nice 12".
    In your most XS-like opinion- do you think this speaker will hold up in a guitar amp with dual 6L6's ? And if you have any experience with the tonal quality I may expect?
     
  8. muchxs

    muchxs Doctor of Teleocity

    Posts:
    13,171
    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2004
    Location:
    New England
    Want it. Want it. Want it, want it, WANT IT! :D

    The amp, anyway. :D

    Square magnet CTS ceramic?

    I have a Super Twin in a Vibrasonic cabinet with one of those. I think 180 watts is a bit much for that speaker but it ain't dead yet. :D

    Ampeg used those in their late '60s Portaflex cabinets. Considering I've seen a lot more run through a lot less... for instance Baldwin used to run a 2x 6L6 amp through a single long suffering 12" alnico. For that matter the Fender tweed Pro has two 5881s through a Jensen alnico 15". That's a combination almost designed to demolish vintage alnicos. The big CTS should take it as long as you're not dimed 24/7.

    What to expect for tone: The late '60s CTS speakers are slightly less efficient than most modern speakers. For instance a couple Eminence Legend twelves will overpower the poor old CTS and you won't hear it. It has a tough rock 'n' roll tone on its own, though. They generally have big bass with rolled off highs that make the bass seem even bigger. :D
     
  9. Mr Ridesglide

    Mr Ridesglide Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    2,125
    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2009
    Location:
    Bloomington, MN
    Wish I had the whole amp Much. Was at work and had no tools. Hard enough to get the speaker. Tore up my fingers pretty good ! 'Bout a battillions worth of tubes though. 12ax7, 12au7. Bunch I never heard mentioned. Cool bottle OA3.

    Not a square magnet either. Was hoping on a BF Vibroverb-y thing.
     

    Attached Files:

  10. muchxs

    muchxs Doctor of Teleocity

    Posts:
    13,171
    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2004
    Location:
    New England
    I'll get you a Leatherman for Christmas. :D

    Our mentally handicapped neighbor had a thing for flashlights when I was a kid. He got his Social Security check the beginning of every month. First week of every month he'd hitchhike into town and buy another flashlight.

    I have a multi- tool fetish. It started with the multi- tool I found in the middle of the road when I was out on motorcycle. Then the Chinese multi- tool I bought as a backup. Then the Home Depot house brand multi- tool I bought last year 'cuz they had 'em on sale dirt cheap. Like... five bucks! More recently it was the Fastenal house brand multi- tool 'cuz it too was dirt cheap.

    Everyone needs a multi- tool to slice cheese and open bottles. :cool:
     
    wildbill59 likes this.
  11. Mr Ridesglide

    Mr Ridesglide Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    2,125
    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2009
    Location:
    Bloomington, MN
    And this speaker may work? :)
     
  12. teletimetx

    teletimetx Doctor of Teleocity

    Posts:
    12,701
    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2011
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Here's a photo of one of the speakers in a 2 X15 cab that came with a '68 Bassman head that a friend and I have. They sound pretty darn good. I only have one other 15 to compare it to - the one that came with an Ampeg Gemini II that I have. I would say these sound a little warmer, but that's not exactly a technical, repeatable result. Is it a CTS? I don't know.

    But, like I said, it sounds pretty darn good hooked up to the Bassman. Have no intentions of swapping them out. Is the low end as tight and defined as say a 12 or even good 10 inchers in a Super Reverb? Probably not. Just different. Is the high end ever gonna be quite so clean and glassy? Probably not. Just different. Still Fender clean. Maybe even smoother, IMO.

    Best of luck
     

    Attached Files:

IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.