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Speaker size relative to Cabinet size

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by drob, Jan 14, 2019.

  1. drob

    drob Tele-Holic

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    I'm trying to figure out when a speaker might be too large for a cabinet or in this case a combo. I recently picked up a mid 90's tube combo and see that the 12 inch speaker is larger than the grill cloth opening by about an inch. Also, as I look for other possible replacements to open up the sound a bit I see that almost all 12 inch speakers won't fit. Pretty much limited to Jensen C12Q, Mod 12-35 or 50, and the WGS G12Q. Basically anything with a small magnet and basket combo. This amp is about the same size as my Princeton with a 10 in it. It's much smaller than the DR or an AC15 - both 12's.


    My thoughts are that the designer wedged a 12 in there when in fact a 10 may have been a better decision. But before I go cutting a new baffle, would a smaller speaker open up the sound more or does speaker size to cabinet size even relate to the boxiness sound? I see complaints about 'boxiness' relating to speakers being to large for the enclosure. What other effects on sound is impacted by speaker size to cabinet size?
     
    FrontPU likes this.
  2. philosofriend

    philosofriend Tele-Holic

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    Boxiness is also encouraged by cabinets that have two, or worse, three dimensions the same.

    It is hard to generalize because one certain ten might sound great in there while another one would be horrible.

    In general, putting a ten into a twelve cabinet will give you less bass in the tone. You might like that or you might hate it. The ten can help you cut through a mix while the twelve can make playing solo guitar chord-melody stuff more fun.

    It is easy to cut a wooden ring that screws into the existing baffle. The ten will screw to that ring. This is less work than making a new baffle, and can be switched back quick if you don't like the sound. 1/2 inch plywood is about right to make the ring.
     
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  3. JustABluesGuy

    JustABluesGuy Friend of Leo's

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    I’m no expert on cabinet design, but I do know that cabinet size effects the way a speaker sounds, as does back type (open/closed, etc.)

    I would personally prefer a 10” speaker in a smaller cab rather than trying to cram whatever will fit into it. I also prefer 10’s anyway so there’s that.

    If your combo’s baffle was cut an inch smaller (on both sides) is it possible that it was designed for a 10 and somone later forced the 12 in there? In other words, are you sure the 12 is original? Also keep in mind that a 10 with a larger magnet might sound better than a 12 with a small magnet, even if one normally prefers 12’s.

    And if you decide to go the “adapter” route, but don’t have the ability to cut your own there are such adapters available to buy as well. Be aware though that an adapter WILL reduce the depth available for the speaker’s magnet by its own thickness. The commercially available ones that I have seen are about 1/2 inch as @philosofriend mentioned.

    Good luck and post updates!
     
  4. drob

    drob Tele-Holic

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    That's kind of where I'm at. Yes the amp was originally designed with a 12, but replacement options are few. I agree a larger magnet on a 10 may sound better. I have no problem cutting a new baffle, although with limited time, my preference would be to have a guitar in hand instead of saw.

    I do believe budget Amp makers make the smallest cab possible for cost reasons and put the largest speaker in they can for marketing purposes. I think that most guitar players want a larger speaker - especially in a single speaker config.
     
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  5. schmee

    schmee Doctor of Teleocity

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    If an inch total on the diameter ... no problem. I doubt an inch on each side is a problem either. In fact many old cabs have much smaller holes. Hammond did smaller holes also and they were quality stuff. The outer 3/4-1" of a speaker doesn't do much but flex... anyway.

    My thought is boxiness or woofy lower end are more a function of cabinet depth being too deep. But shallow cab can result in middy and less lower end.

    I have been surprised how fitting a large speaker in a cab can sound fine, but like all these things "it depends"
    I used to use a 15" EV monster in a cab smaller than a DR cab. It was an old particle board SS fender amp cab I put a baffle in covering the chassis slot. The 15 barely fit vertically. Like 1/4" inside above and below. a couple inches on the sides.It sounded fantastic. Probably due to the depth being like 11-11.5". But the EV had huge low end anyway, so a smaller cab didnt inhibit it. If you had a really bright bottomless speaker, maybe it would matter.
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2019
  6. JustABluesGuy

    JustABluesGuy Friend of Leo's

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    I agree, that’s why I recommend an adapter. I wouldn’t want to mod an existing baffle, or even change one if I don’t need to.

    Depending on the situation I do prefer a single 12 to a single 10. I tend to run 2x10’s. I forgot, what amp are we talking about?
     
  7. swampyankee

    swampyankee Tele-Holic

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    I picked up a SCXD for the purpose of re-cabbing it for a 12. I "prototyped" it by plugging the head into the 12" C12q in my old ss Deluxe 112. It sounded great, so I ordered a custom cab to accommodate the SCXD chassis and a 12" speaker. Although the cab was just a few inches narrower than my D112, just didn't sound the same. I tried a few different speakers including the C12q from the D112, but they all sounded boxy. I eventually returned the SCXD to its original configuration.
    On the other hand, I picked up a 65 Ampeg Reverberocket. Even though the cab is not as big as a DRRI, it still has a wonderful resonance like my old DRRI.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G870A using Tapatalk
     
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