An 18, different 15 or start from scratch

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by chris4001asat, Jul 8, 2003.

  1. chris4001asat


    Dec 16, 2002
    Toledo, Ohio
    Warehouse Manager : Reverend Guitars
    Here's my amp history...I had a Hartke stack ( 15 and 4x10) powered with a Peavey Megabass. Hated it! The weight, the tone, everything. The salesclerk showed me a SWR SuperRedhead. I plugged in, and without touching a dial, knew that was the sound I was looking for. Played a good 3 years with it, and absolutely happy with it. Then a joined a little louder band, she still kept up, but eventually the speakers blew. SWR rep said I should really invest in an extension speaker. While she was in the shop, I had to rent a Yorkville combo, and was quite pleased. So I bought a 1x15 to use with the Redhead. Again I was happy. Three weeks ago, my drummer filled in with a band, and their bass player had a HUGE sound. It was a monstrous Peavey cab. An 18 with two 10s They played outside, and he filled the air. I had two outdoor gigs the next week, and I just couldn't hear myself unless I was right in front of amp. Should I buy the SWR 18, a different (better?) 15...say Ampeg or Aguilar? Is there that big a difference between a 15 and an 18? (My drummer thinks so, but he's a drummer!) Or is the Redhead just not powerful enough, and I need a whole new setup? Maybe a preamp, power amp setup? The Redheads 400 into 4 ohms, 450 into 2 ohms. I play in a loud R&B band, with a 3 piece horn section, and a polka band as well.
  2. BillyB_from_LZ


    Sep 7, 2000
    You didn't mention what type of 15 you have.

    Adding a Big Ben would sound great! It's very untubby for an 18.

    Unless something has changed, the Ben is only 8 ohms. Adding that to the Redhead would run the amp at 2.67 (4 ohm (internal speakers) and 8 ohm loads in parallel) This would be above the minimum rating of the amp so you'll be OK.

    Good luck!!!!
  3. chris4001asat


    Dec 16, 2002
    Toledo, Ohio
    Warehouse Manager : Reverend Guitars
    It's a Yorkville 15. Not sure of the model number. It sounds great in smaller settings, just not enough oomph in larger areas.
  4. Trevorus


    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    if you want low end, and have enough dough...

    Go for an accugroov 21". Now that's fat bottom!
  5. redneck2wild


    Nov 27, 2002
    Memphis, TN
    The Peavey cabinet with an 18 and 2 10s is an 1820 cabinet. I had one in the late 80's. It was a very loud cabinet but also was very heavy. One reason the cabinet sounds so huge without being too boomy is that there is a passive crossover in the cabinet sending just the highs to the 10s while sending the lows to the 18. You get the clarity from the highs (10s).
    Typically if you run a full range sound to an 18, it will sound boomy. 18s usually need some sort of crossover. Most people using 18s use a biamp setup with an active crossover. Some Subs have built in passive crossovers (typically a passive crossovers has a limited amount of power they can handle - I blew the one in my 1820 but never blew any of the speakers - the speakers could handle more power than the crossover).
    Most 18s will move more air than most 15s - but they almost always need larger cabinets. I replaced a 2x15 cabinet with the 1820. The 1820 gave me both additional volume and better tone. I later replaced it with 2 cabinets for portability - a 4x10 and a 1x18. Once you start using an 18 for your lows, its hard to go back to a 15.

    You mentioned Bag End.
    According to Bag End's Web site:
    Bag-End S18-D
    Frequency Response 36-2Kz
    Sensitiviy 101 db
    Continuous Power Handling 300 W
    Weight 73
    Bag-End S15-D
    Frequency Response 50-4kz
    Sensitiviy 103 db
    Continuous Power Handling 200 W
    Weight 44

    Since I play mostly a 5 string with the low B around 30hz and E around 41hz, I would want a cabinet that at least will reproduce the E for my bottom. But you pay the price of a heavier, larger cabinet that is not as sensitive.
    If you boost your lows now, you may need a cabinet that puts out more lows. I think a properly crossovered 18 would work better than a 15 to put out deep lows at a good volume.
  6. Petebass


    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    OK that was funny!

    To answer your question, yes. But there is also a difference between a 15 and a different 15.

    You've really gotta get out there and play through as many speakers as you can until you hear something that sounds right to you.
  7. Maybe add another Yorkville 15? The dimensions would be the same, you could stack them or place side by side and put the swr on top.
  8. mikemulcahy


    Jun 13, 2000
    The Abyss
    I play 18's as well. I love them, but they are serious power hogs. You may want to try one with your rig before you buy. Make sure you have the muscle to push it.

  9. chris4001asat


    Dec 16, 2002
    Toledo, Ohio
    Warehouse Manager : Reverend Guitars
    Thanks for all the replies! Just wish there was a store in my area that a had a good selection. Looks like a trip up to Detroit is in order...
  10. BillyB_from_LZ


    Sep 7, 2000

    Since you're headed to the Great State of Michigan, perhaps you'll want to visit Low Down Sound in Ferndale. I've never been there but they are a bass only store and their cabs have received good reviews here.
  11. redneck2wild


    Nov 27, 2002
    Memphis, TN
    You may also want to try a PA Sub with an 18. There a number of PA Subs on the market with 18s. Most of the local stores in my area have some PA Subs with 18s. The Guitar center here has at least 10 different models.
  12. chris4001asat


    Dec 16, 2002
    Toledo, Ohio
    Warehouse Manager : Reverend Guitars
    Again, thanks for all the help and the website for Lowdown. I'm drooling already! Bagend, Bergantino, Epifani.....My wife's going to kill me!
  13. lamarjones

    lamarjones Supporting Member

    Aug 27, 2002
    Raleigh, NC
    Another 210 may have the surface area you need for the volume you are looking for.
  14. tombowlus

    tombowlus If it sounds good, it is good Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2003
    North central Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine

    I still own a Peavey 1820 cab. It gave me many years of good service, especially when I paired it up with a Peavey 210TX. Then I made the leap to a Mesa Boogie 4x10 and an Eden 212XLT, and I never looked back. :D

    Many cabs later, I still use the 1820 for practice sessions (we have a room in a secure building where I can just leave it). I did replace the 18" Black Widow (which I blew several times and kept getting new cones/voice coils for) with a Madison 1,000w 18" Executioner, and the low end impact increased noticeably. That 18 really cranks out some serious low end. However, compared to my Epifani mini stack (T-112 and T-110UL), it does sound very muddy. Those two Epi cabs are wonderful together. And, BTW, I purchased them at Low Down Sound!

    Being in Fremont, I am a little farther away than you, but it is well worth the drive. In addition to their wonderful "name brand" selection (be sure to check out the Accugrooves!), Don makes a very excellent cab himself, and their prices are very reasonable for the quality of product. They make a 1x15 that has a ton of punch and sweetness to it. Really quite nice. I also listened to their 1x12's (which come in several "flavors"), and was also impressed.

    Don, Ryan and Bob are all very cool guys who treated me very well (and stayed over about 2 hours past their closing time to let me agonize over my two Epifani cabs or one Accugroove Mini Whappo). If you go, give yourself plenty of time to play, and tell them I said hello!

  15. jerry

    jerry Too old for a hiptrip Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 13, 1999
    18's take more room for their sound to develope,great for outside......not so great for small clubs. If you play a more small clubs than big clubs, the 15 might be for you.
  16. chris4001asat


    Dec 16, 2002
    Toledo, Ohio
    Warehouse Manager : Reverend Guitars
    Thanks for all your help. I found the SWR 18 on ebay and thought "Why not" It's my first plunge in the world of Ebay. Just have to wait for UPS man now!