Originally Posted by JimmyM
Speaker size has absolutely no bearing on the sound of the cab. If it did, then all cabs with the same size speakers would sound the same. And all speakers respond at the exact same speed...instantaneously. Thinking some are faster or slower than others is a result of the sound of the cab, not the actual speed of the speaker responding to the note.
Actually, that is not quite accurate.
In keeping with the long tradition of TB nitpicking, I have to point out the driver is mechanical, therefore instantaneous does not apply.
The voice coil has the property of induction.
Remember ELI the ICE man, where voltage leads current in an inductive circuit?
Last, all drivers have mass.
The mass is accelerated and decelerated by the motor (magnet assembly).
A hemi-powered dragster accelerates its mass faster than a Yugo because the horsepower to weight ratio is higher.
OP, all humor aside, each model of driver has its own physical characteristics which determine its sound quality.
As noted above, you won't hear any differences in driver acceleration in the bass frequency range.
What you will hear is how loud one is compared with another (sensitivity) and frequency ranges (low and high).
The physical layout also affects the sound quality.
Vertical stacking restricts distribution in the vertical plane, and widens distribution in the horizontal plane.
Square layouts such as the typical 4x10 introduce peaks and valleys (combing) that varies by where the listener is positioned.
Very important is how the driver is housed.
Cabinet volume and tuning make huge differences in the bass response of a given driver.
Small cabs let them handle a bit more power, but mostly meet marketing and sales objectives, but with reduced low bass output.
Big boxes go down lower, offer a bit less power handling, and become a PIA at load-out time.
Sealed boxes offer 'tighter' bass response because they do not have the 90-degree lag time between note generation and vent output.
The price paid for sealed is less bass response for a given voltage, and a higher roll-off frequency.
Most electric bass drivers are optimized for vented boxes.
You can hear frequency response.
Woofers, i.e. Legend BP-102 are designed for low frequency use, and have no "sparkle" when used by themselves.
These are paired with smaller drivers, i.e. Alpha 6a that are good to 5,000 Hz or so.
Some players like the thud, others want something full range.
This is where it becomes subjective, and your opinion is the only one that matters.