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1x 18 folded cab build?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Noot, Jan 23, 2014.

  1. Hello,

    I've been drooling over the Acoustic 360/361 re-issue setup that's out now, but since I live in Europe, with the purchase price plus taxes plus shipping, that's never going to happen. So I've been having the crazy thought of building a folded horn cabinet with an 18-inch speaker. Would that make any sense? Does anyone use that kind of stuff anymore?
  2. Rune Bivrin

    Rune Bivrin Supporting Member

    Oct 2, 2006
    Huddinge, Sweden
    The answer is no to both questions (IMO).
  3. stonewall


    Jun 14, 2010
    18 and a horn yee....uck no thx. i will take anything between.
  4. CL400Peavey

    CL400Peavey Supporting Member

    Nov 7, 2011
    Grand Rapids Michigan
    If you are interested in horns, Check out BFM's designs.

    They are out there, but I think you would have better results with a different driver. Driver size tells you nothing.
  5. I owned an Acoustic 360 amp in the 90s. Wow. We were playing at an outdoor carnival, and later, people told me that from blocks away, all they could hear was the bass- no drums, no guitars. But up at the stage, the mix was balanced and good.

    For the $150 I paid for it, the 360 was impressive in its throw of SPLs; but IMIO (in my ignorant opinion) the latest designs are far more impressive in their articulation and sound quality.

    Build a fEARful and be happier.
  6. Roland GR 88

    Roland GR 88

    Sep 16, 2013
    I'm no cabinet builder but I owned a Fender 18" reflex cab. many years ago. The throw was so long that I never played a club big enough to handle it. Walls of mud would be bouncing all over the place unless you turned down or eq'd the snot out of it. I never got a tone that worked for the stage and the room at the same time. I did, however learn a lot about acoustics during that time from a few patient and forgiving sound guys. Cabinet and speaker design has come a long way since and there are much better options for you out there.
  7. BawanaRik


    Mar 6, 2012
    New Jersey
    Technology has come a long. But to paraphrase the auto, there's no substitute for square inches.

    And if your playing a lot of out door shows where need to fill open spaces it might be a good idea.

    My 410 has more bass than I'll ever need.

    But if you want to be legend build two. and stack them vertical. The cops will come from the next nation. And consider the 36" driver. I recall the dead actually teched it out and 2 36" drivers stacked vertically was the way to go.

    But if you want to avoid the title Legend, go with a 410.
  8. CL400Peavey

    CL400Peavey Supporting Member

    Nov 7, 2011
    Grand Rapids Michigan
    I would rather be a god.... :bassist:
  9. bass_case

    bass_case Maintain low tones. Supporting Member

    Oct 23, 2013
    Miami, FL
    In the 70s, I had a 1-15" folded horn cab (not a name brand) with a Sunn Concert amp and that sucker could Project! Played mostly bars and the occasional large room. Back then, PA was for vocals only.

    If you play under similar conditions or outdoors it might make sense, or to have as a special use cab. Modern 4x cabs are a lot more versatile.
  10. will33


    May 22, 2006
    Here's all the horns you'll ever need.


    Even if you don't go that route, read through all the tech stuff there anyway...you'll learn a lot.

    Note...all his folded horns are designed as dedicated subwoofers, designed to be run with a top box. Bi-amping is the right way to do it, but he does include an optional passive crossover in the plans, with the caveat, it is only to be used for backline use or very small PA, like you'd see a bar band using with a powered mixer.
  11. Loud and Clear

    Loud and Clear

    Jul 2, 2013
    Cincinnati, OH
    Pro Gear Manager, Loud and Clear, Inc.

    Why do they make different sizes then?
  12. Economics - cheaper to use one big speaker then to use multiple smaller speakers to achieve the same displacement.
  13. CL400Peavey

    CL400Peavey Supporting Member

    Nov 7, 2011
    Grand Rapids Michigan
    Different people are going to have different needs, not ever driver is going to meet all those needs.

    As an example I can pick two 15's. One would be good as a PA sub woofer, but wouldnt have much content over 100hz, the other an old vintage guitar driver. Now they are both 15" speakers, but that does not indicate the application that they are best suited for, and it doesnt mean either are good as a stand alone driver for use with amplifying bass, even though there are many 15" drivers that are.

    So what does driver size alone tell you: The size of the driver. And that is it.
  14. Gaolee

    Gaolee It's all about the polyester

    I am a dissenting voice here. I have used a 360/361 for a while and have never found it to turn the sound to mush. The only instance I had an issue was an odd resonance when it hooked up with a hollow stage in a way I didn't expect. That was easily solved. The throw means you don't have to crank it to fill a venue with sound, and that can be fantstic. I haven't had any problems with an 18 being muddy in that cabinet. There are people who have built 301 replicas in the US and South America, but I don't know about Europe. There's no reason I can think of not to do it if that's what you want. It isn't a difficult woodworking project if you know what you are doing with tools.

    They do sound different from a speaker that has a bunch of 10s. Not necessarily better or worse. I thought about building a BFM cabinet at one point, and I also thought about building a fEARful, but the folded horns work well enough for me that I haven't had a whole lot of motivation to use anything else.
  15. Loud and Clear

    Loud and Clear

    Jul 2, 2013
    Cincinnati, OH
    Pro Gear Manager, Loud and Clear, Inc.
    Really? I always thought it had more to do with space and power efficiency in reproducing a specific frequency range.
  16. CL400Peavey

    CL400Peavey Supporting Member

    Nov 7, 2011
    Grand Rapids Michigan
    I think the point is, if he wants to build something for himself, there are established plans out there to ensure he gets good results. If he is set on a horn configuration, the BFM designs are pretty much his best option. Those are going to have recommended drivers for the design to work best.
  17. Loud and Clear

    Loud and Clear

    Jul 2, 2013
    Cincinnati, OH
    Pro Gear Manager, Loud and Clear, Inc.
    Which 15" drivers specifically are you referring to? I think what you are trying to describe is differences in motor specification rather than differences in cone diameter/cone area, e.g.; given the same motor assemblies, the larger cone has the potential for stronger low frequency response, based on identical program material regardless of what that motor specification may be.
    Different motor assemblies have decidedly different tonal, power handling, SPL, etc. characteristics, and the size of the cone and basket used unquestionably effects the overall performance of the driver within those motor parameters.

    Which is why they make different size drivers for different applications.
  18. CL400Peavey

    CL400Peavey Supporting Member

    Nov 7, 2011
    Grand Rapids Michigan
    The point is if I tell you I have, "A 15" speaker..." you wouldnt know anything about it other than it's size. So that measurement tells you nothing about how the speaker sounds.
  19. And you can also simply google folded horn plans and some dawings will come up..I need more detail as I am not a skilled carpenter.

    There are several variations on folded horn designs.

    Some include the 'W-Horn' or Keele Horn Design. This is what Cerwin-Vega and [Vintage] Acoustic and Acoustic USA employ. Fender, Orange , Peavey..yes..even Ampeg have used w-horn designs at some point. For whatever reason..Horn cabs lost favor and 8x10 or
    (2) 4x10' s are far more prevelent today.

    JBL 4530 'Sugarscoop' is another .

    Karslon Coupler is another as well as more contemporary designs .

    And my fave ..Sunn 118-vh is yet another.

    Although I will always want a w-horn; preferably Acoustic 301..They have an inherent issue, which is that they 'throw sound ' so well, so as to not be heard well on stage, while KILLING at 40 feet away out in the audience ...or even down the street. I have experienced this first-hand in early 70's with a friends 361 rig. Some claim a loss of highs with W-HORNS..I don't know.

    I bought a used Sunn 118-vh.. Google images of that or look in Sunn club, here..it has no loss of highs up to D# on G-String and lows that the Almighty would be proud of.

    TONE TO DIE FOR..I can hear mine clearly on stage and I have heard it played with my bass and AC 370 head at 40 feet away..I asked my wife who was by my side, if I was that loud...She said YES. [I had probably caused gastric issues with some patrons..and I wasn't tuned up beyond 2.]

    If you want an old school w- horn..simply google w-horn designs ...and drawings will come up..hopefully you can use them.

    I have not found a drawing of the Sunn118-vh cab. I even contacted Conrad Sundholm [MR SUNN] who said he no longer had any construction plans for that cab; only that "it was a difficult build".

    One day..if I don't buy another, I will take mine to a trusted cabinet shop; have it reverse engineered and provide me with build plans.

    Used w-horn cabs are fairly plentiful..but heavy to ship..LOCAL PICK UP ONLY is common when you find one. They are heavy. ..@150 pounds...made of 3/4" plywood.

    Find an empty one and install a new speaker..you will be pleased...In my opinion and use..There is the sound of a folded horn..then there's the rest.

    Also if you are ever up against a guitar stack or 2..they may even ask you to turn down, if you power it with no less than 300 watts RMS...especially if you emply (2) horn loaded cabs.

    There are those who will follow my post with graphs and charts and claims of physics..that a cabinet doesn't throw sound and that only a specific contemporary design is BEST and all..any other designs are archaic..obsolete at best..I am tired of that debate..I will ONLY agree to disagree.

    alaskaleftybass likes this.