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10's or 15's

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by rdk, Jul 18, 2012.

  1. rdk


    May 28, 2011
    I know a lot of players on this forum have different tastes in tone. Since I'm new to bass and bass tone, I'd like to get some ideas from others as far as a bass rig. I understand that 10" drivers can produce as much low end as 15's. I understand the only thing that changes is the SPL. Depending on driver I guess. But do 10's produce any frequency better than 15's? How about midrange? I've seen a couple of cabinets setup with 2x10/1x15 and tweeter. The specs read

    "great low end from 15's, punchy midrange from 10's, high end clarity from tweeter"

    Any benefit at all to this configuration. Now I'm not trying to start a thread on pairing cabs, I'm speaking strictly "what if these different drivers are in same enclosure?" I've heard people tying to bi-amp these kinds of cabinets. But doesn't make sense to me really.
  2. Bromosapian


    Sep 28, 2010
    15"s. You still get tonnes of high end from them. Look up shellac or jesus lizard. they have more high end than most bands here and neither of their bassist used tweetsr or 10s. Tweeters are only good with really really clean basses, and even then its arguable. If you use any kind ofdirt they just make them sound like ****.
  3. The ONLY true difference is the dispersion at higher frequencies. If the 10" have poor high frequency response then the point is moot.
    The short answer is, there is no clear blanket answer available.
  4. gigslut


    Dec 13, 2011
    St Louis, Mo
    What's wrong with 12"s?
  5. low2groove

    low2groove Tyranis 4 / Lower Groove Guitars

    Jan 21, 2007
    To me 15's are more of a rock thing like the hair bands or Aerosmith type stuff. 12's have to much bottom and you have to push your pre to much to get some mids rockin' Now 10's are the best in my book. Nice tight and punchy with great articulation. Put four of them together and you have more cone area pushing than 2X15's or 3X12's
  6. IF you want to generalize, then a 410 has about the same surface area of a 215. A 3x12 has more surface area. That is just raw numbers, if the 410 is displacement limited it may only equal a good displacement 2X8. ;)
  7. I used to rock 4x10, 2x10 anda 2x12 cabs and have found that I'm a 15" man. Put two 1x15" cabs on top of each other and a pbass = :D
  8. I've been really impressed with my 2 x 15' lately.... I've used it with my two (completely polar opposite) bands and it has delivered very well. I'd have to say it actually sounds better than my 8 x 10.

    Personal preferences, you won't know until you try either in a real live/rehearsal/stage environment.
  9. 2behead


    Mar 8, 2011
    15s have a girth to them that is pretty cool. I love my 15 and 18 for that matter. But 10s are snappy. They give it to you right now. As a bassist I notice but a guitarist is less likely to notice. Buy the time the crowd hears it.... forget about it. Go play some. give em a test run with the same head. Its subtle if every thing is good quality, but it is definitely there. I think 15s are my fave but i end up gigging 10s most of the time. Despite what some would say my Musicman head with matching 2-10 and a 15 musicman cabs kick ass!!!!
  10. iualum


    Apr 9, 2004
    It all depends on the individual speakers.

    There are new full-range "super" 15s that make them the only way to go imho. These can be used by themselves & still cover up to 4kHz. No need to do a 2-way cabinet by adding a tweeter or dedicated midrange speaker.

    Potential loudness stems primarily from being able to "move more air." Displacement (Vd specification) is the term & it's the product of speaker surface area multiplied by Xmax (the distance the cone moves). A 15 has more surface area (~10-20% depending on the specific speaker) than two 10s. Factor in very good Xmax numbers & very high sensitivity/efficiency (~100 dB on both) & they begin to get scary.

    The 2 drivers are the Eminence Kappa Lite 3015 & Faital Pro 15PR400. They're much better than anything in commercially available cabinets.

    http://www.usspeaker.com/Kappa Lite-3015-1.htm

    http://www.usspeaker.com/faital pro 15PR400-1.htm

    A very nice & less expensive alternative is the Eminence Delta Lite 2515. It isn't in the league of the above 2, but it's as nice as the nicest speakers you can buy in mass marketed cabs & it can be had for ~ $100 less than the 3015/15PR400. Great bang for the buck.

    http://www.usspeaker.com/delta lite2515II-1.htm

    If you want a 2-way cabinet, then use an Eminence Kappa Lite 3015LF & an 18Sound 6ND410 (6 1/2" midrange speaker). The 3015LF (~ 99 dB sensitivity) can move much more air than the non-LF or the 15PR400, but its range is limited to 1.5 kHz. Enter the dragon, er, I mean the 18Sound. It extends the cab's range to 8kHz & boasts ~102 dB sensitivity (meaning it's tremendously loud). This is a literal monster cab & will destroy any (as in ANY) commercial 410 (NOT a typo, don't mean a 210, mean a 410).

    http://www.usspeaker.com/Kappa Lite-3015lf-1.htm

    http://www.usspeaker.com/6&8.htm#18 Sound
  11. Bromosapian


    Sep 28, 2010

    Seriously, this is all the reason you need to go with 15"s.
  12. Uncle K

    Uncle K The bass player doesn't get a sandwich Supporting Member

    Aug 22, 2011
    Erie, PA

    Ummm no. 2 15's have more cone area than 4 10's.
  13. btp


    Aug 30, 2009
    Lansing, Michigan
    +1 for IUALUM's point about the Eminence Kappa Lite 3015. It is a remarkable driver. I use a cabinet with one of them, all by itself, and it rocks. And fEarFul = 3015LF + 6.5" Midrange, yes? That cabinet has lots of fans here, but of course it's not just the driver: the cabinet is designed to optimize the Kappa Lite driver for bass guitar.
  14. Plucky The Bassist

    Plucky The Bassist ZOMG! I'm back from the dead!

    Jul 30, 2010
    Houston, TX
    + 1

    As a lover of 15's, I'm seriously considering using them exclusively. I have a 2x10 avatar and it's nice, but the 15's I put in my Kasino 2x15 cab are just amazing. I can't wait to put a REAL tube head on it and see how phenomenal it sounds through the 15's.
  15. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I like good sound cabs and I don't like bad sounding cabs, and the size of the speaker doesn't make a difference to me. And the size of the speaker is the very least important factor of why a cab sounds good. 10"s can't go low? How come the Ampeg SVT 410HLF goes way lower than most 15" cabs I've played? 15"s can't go as high as 10"s? There's a 15" made by Faital that can, as well as one or two old JBL speakers. If speaker size was an important factor, then all cabs made with the same size speakers would sound the same.

    Also, while I like some of the new fangled woofer/mid cabs, they aren't the only way to go ;)
  16. Some 15" have excellent frequency response up to 4,000 Hz or higher.
    On the RTA, my JBL 18" E155 with chrome dome gets up this high. On axis.

    The problem is beaming.
    A 15" driver is fully directional (beaming) by 1,000 Hz and above.
    If the listener is dead on-axis, the bass sparkles.
    Off axis, it thuds. Noticeably.

    The 10" driver is beaming by 1,600 Hz.
    With a 6" driver, complete beaming does not occur until 2,600 Hz.

    The 15" driver remains omni-directional up to 250 Hz +/-.
    Off-axis coverage is the reason to cross over to a 6" driver.
  17. You are right. The problem is that there are not many people using a 110 cab. In the case of a 410, the combined speakers act like a much larger speaker and beam even more than a 115. A vertical stack of two 210's improves dispersion over a standard 410.
  18. Roscoe East

    Roscoe East

    Aug 22, 2011
    Fixed that for you.
  19. pickles

    pickles Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2000
    Ventura, CA
    15s have been some of the best cabs I've ever heard (Eden 115T and first gen 115XLT, Mesa 215, SWR Triad, custom sealed 215), and some of the worst (80s peavey 215, later 115xlt). But the best list is way longer.

    The 15s I like have a barky but sweet top and a full but tight bottom with physical impact, and strong textured mids. I usually like them with a bit of tweeter. Have not tried one with a mid driver other than the triad, it's definitely an interesting idea.

    I'm actually thinking of going from 12s back to something with a 15 right now. Can't decide if some 10s are necessary with it, I've always done a 15+210 thing ... Considering 2 15s. I play all styles, not just rock.
  20. +1 on 12" drivers.

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