1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Audiokinesis 1203 vs 1533

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by innersmile111, Apr 5, 2017.

  1. innersmile111


    Jun 9, 2014
    Greetings TB~

    I was trying sift through the AK mega thread and started to melt my brain...so I figured I try out starting a new thread(my first!). I am looking to buy a AK 1203 or 1533(I don't want to go any heavier than 37lbs) and would like to here what you all would get and why. I mainly play world and R&B style and starting to learn to slap..pretty much always clean. I am looking to get a nice full rich sound that handles the low B string and can get through the mix...no muddiness. I was thinking that the 1203 could be used for most gigs, but if I needed more power I can pair it with the GK Neo112 (has anybody tried this combo?) or I can step up and get the 1533 which would cover all my loudness needs by itself but its 11lbs heavier. For those that have had experience with both: what are the main differences sonically between the 1203 and the 1533? Can they both handle the low b equally as well. which one sounds better to you? and last question, has any one a/b or had experience with the Thunderchild 12 and 15? how do these compare to the Hathors(especially with the low B string)


    My gear:
    G&L M2500 5 string
    G&L LB100 4 string
    Carvin LB76 6 string
    Carvin LB76 fretless 6 string

    GK MB500
    older Carvin power amp with Sansamp RPM preamp rack

    GK Neo 112
    sonofshel likes this.
  2. mistergyro


    Feb 10, 2011
    i would love to hear peoples thoughts on this.
    sonofshel likes this.
  3. sonofshel

    sonofshel Supporting Member

    Mar 9, 2005
    Memphis, TN
    Just seeing this post and wanting to revive it...curious if anyone will comment. I personally chose the Hathor 1203 a year ago after reading the mega thread and researching all of the options and offerings of other companies. I'm a four stringer though and don't need to worry about a cabinet delivering a low B string. Just ordered another 1203 last week and they now are being built with 3 ports instead of one. This would, I imagine, have more benefits at producing a more solid low end for a B string.
    Also curious as to if you purchased a cabinet yet and which one did you choose?
  4. innersmile111


    Jun 9, 2014
    i actully ordered a tc 112 and a hathor 1203 a few months ago...got the tc and love it...blows the gk112neo away not even in the same ball park. still waiting for the 1203!
  5. mistergyro


    Feb 10, 2011
    man, i've been back and forth between the Berg HG-10, AK1203, AK 1533 and the barefaced TWO. can't seem to pull the trigger on anything. i've got a beautiful handbox r-400 (2ohm upgrade) and a workhorse Avatar neo 1-15"...i have a feeling that going AK is the way to go but i sometimes get very low with my future impact synth pedal so i really need something that is light but can get really clean articulate deep tones...Hit you in the chest type of stuff.

    Perhaps 2 - 1203's or a 1533 with 1203?? i'm just afraid cause i don't think AK is known for the low end thing.
  6. Perhaps you should speak to the man himself. Perhaps if you summoned the genie, Like @DukeLeJeune, would appear and answer your questions. As far as "a low end thing" they are a full range speaker systems optimized for bass.
    I think AK products are as capable, if not more so, of reproducing pretty much anything you can throw at them than anything on the market within the constraints of power handling etc. all things considered. I also know he has said he'll tell you if he thinks his cabs wouldn't be a fit for you.!! However I'm betting if you are playing your effects at fairly high volume especially with sub harmonic stuff Perhaps consider something like either one of the 115 cabs or a 112 plus a sub.
    I've been on the fence with AK and one or two others myself. I also use sub harmonic effects frequently on the gig so I'm interested as well. Perhaps others who use effects will comment.
  7. chris_b


    Jun 2, 2007
    If your current cab is a GK Neo 112 then one H1203 will exceed your wildest expectations.

    If that isn't enough get two and be amazed all over again.
  8. Passinwind

    Passinwind I know nothing. Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 3, 2003
    Columbia River Gorge, WA.
    Owner/Designer &Toaster Tech Passinwind Electronics
    Hathor 18-whatever or TC118 FTW, IMHO.
  9. nostatic

    nostatic Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2004
    lost angeles, CA
    Endorsing Artist: FEA Labs
    I will admit to not having played the 1533, but I've owned a couple of TC112s and H1203s. An H1203 remains my main go-to cabinet, and I have a Changeling-T on order (essentially an H1203 with a second 3" on the back and the height of a TC112).

    My hunch is that the 1533 might be the ticket. The H1203 punches way above its weight. As in WAY above its weight. I've covered loud gigs with a single H1203. That said, it's not going to reach into the depths with a lot of thick push. I suspect the 1533 will be able to fill out the low end a bit more. I actually don't like a lot of thickness below 100hz, so it is a non-issue for me. That isn't to say the H1203 is shy in the bass - it is just that any design will have limits. For instance a lot of cabs that reach really low to me don't speak well in the mids - at least the way I like the mids presented. Always a tradeoff.
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2017
    wave rider likes this.
  10. slagheap


    Dec 23, 2011
    don't currently own a 5 but played one plenty thru my 2 H1203s w/D800. clean 5 string rock & r&b stuff. handled everything beautifully, easily, effortlessly. don't know much about sub-bass, though. not my deal.
  11. DukeLeJeune

    DukeLeJeune rational romantic mystic cynical idealist Commercial User

    Nov 24, 2008
    Princeton, Texas
    Owner & designer, AudioKinesis; Auth. mfg, Big E (Home Audio only)
    The Hathors 1203 and 1533 are both sized to give "good but not massive" low end. In my experience there is a tradeoff relationship between low-end hugeness and low-end clarity (assuming the same woofer in both cases). To get a really massive low end, it is often necessary to size and tune the box such that you get a LOT of output from the port, and that output from the port does not inherently have good pitch definition, unlike the output from the front of the cone.

    My low-end target for these cabs is the 62 Hz first overtone of low-B... I want the first overtone of low-B to be strong enough that the volume doesn't obviously fall off as you walk down the scale. The Hathor 1203 is -3 dB at 62 Hz, and the Hathor 1533 is -4 dB at 62 Hz... BUT most people who have heard both cabs side-by-side feel that the 1533 has a slightly bigger low end. No one has complained that the low end is inadequate, but it's not "massive". And, not "muddy" either. If (and when) room acoustics conspire in favor of muddiness, both of these cabs have multiple pluggable ports, and plugging ports has the effect of tightening up the low end.

    The woofer in the 1533 has a fairly aggressive upper-mid peak, so the 1533 is a bit more "growly" in growly mode. Also, the woofer in the 1533 is unusually efficient for a 15" woofer, while the woofer in the 1203 is a bit on the low-efficiency side for a 12" woofer, so the volume difference between the two cabs is a bit greater than one might expect; a single 1533 has approximately the same max SPL as two 1203's.

    Finally, the 1203 has a little bit better midrange clarity, due to the better power-to-weight ratio for the 12" cone vs the 15" cone (which have essentially the same motor).

    I suppose the 1203 theoretically handles low-B a little bit better, as its woofer has a bit more linear excursion, but neither one is likely to be pushed to its excursion limits unless the low end is boosted a lot.

    The current version of the Thunderchild 115 uses the same woofer and same box size as the Hathor 1533, so its low end performance is identical. The Thunderchild 112 is four inches taller than the Hathor 1203 (same size footprint), and as a result of the greater internal volume the Thunderchild 112 is -1 dB at 62 Hz. The difference on low-B relative to the Hathor 1203 is subtle but audible.

    In theory I could do a Hathor 1203T (for "Tall") that would be the same height and have the same low-end extension as the Thunderchild 112.

    In general, the Thunderchild cabs are "hi fi" and the Hathor cabs are "voiced for bass guitar", with each offering some variation on its respective theme via the switches.

    Imo Greenboy's cabs are probably going to give you the biggest low end in what is still a fairly lightweight cab.

    That being said, as Passinwind mentioned, I make a 118 or two that can deliver a bigger and deeper low end than my 112/115/212 cabs, with pretty good impact.
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2017
  12. lo-freq

    lo-freq aka UFO

    Jan 19, 2003
    DFW, Texas
    Audiokinesis Hathor 1863 - there's a least one out in the wild, but afaik not on the audiokinesis website yet.
    It is heavier than your goal weight though.
  13. slagheap


    Dec 23, 2011
    i play through a little stack, D800 with 2 H1203. it's da' bomb for 5 string, 4 string, 3 string, 2 string. the newer ones with more holes could be even be marginally better, i dunno.

Share This Page