AVATAR TB153 vs fEARful 15/6/1

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Calaverasgrande, Apr 19, 2011.

  1. There is the fEaRfUl design which utilized a "thiele" ported cab and a neo-whatsis LF driver crossed over rather low to a mid driver (and sometimes a tweeter)
    There is also the Avatar TB153 which shares a lot of these same characteristics.

    So for us guys that have more money than time. That aren't going to get around to building an fEaRfuL, is the TB153 close enough for govt work. Or is it a pale imitation that borrows on the buzzwords without reaping the benefits.
    I am mostly concerned that the mid driver is not the same, and the crossover may be not quite as thought out as the OG version.
    I also notice in comparing pictures of both models that the TB153 has a wider/shallower profile and what appears to be a smaller vent.

    Though of course this does not mean it cant have the same internal volume and tuning.

    :bag:
     
  2. rpsands

    rpsands

    Jul 6, 2007
    The biggest differences are the crossover and the mid driver. After that, the mid driver spacing from the woofer and the horn I would guess.

    Bottom line: If you're of the <1khz and below school I think you'll get the majority of what a fEarful will offer from the Avatar cab. If you play flatwounds, this is almost certainly you. If you roll off the tone knob a lot, this is probably you. If you turn the VLE up 3/4 of the way on a Markbass head, this is you.

    If you expect a lot of >1khz from your sound and want the maximum articulation, the fEarful is a big step up in smoothness above 1khz (probably starting out a little lower actually).

    Bear in mind I haven't heard the TB153, just going off of the specs I know (12db crossover @ 800hz and a closed back mid).
     
  3. m0ntels

    m0ntels

    Jan 20, 2011
    Quakertown, PA
    For me it has enough of the fearful character at a more affordable price point. Dispersion and articulation are great for me. The fearful I'm sure is a bit more refined in every way, but the Avatar still blows away the dozen or so other cabs I've tried. I play flats exclusively, so I can't chime in too much on the top end of stuff, but I think I did better buying the TB153 than I would have buying anything <$1000 off the shelf.
     
    Stevie C likes this.
  4. Sundogue

    Sundogue

    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    I play with flats now (Chromes) but I've also played my fEARful 15/6 with rounds. Can't speak to the very high end, but either way it's plenty bright with the mid alone.

    The Eminence mids aren't in the same league as the 18Sound (IMO), although most probably wouldn't care. Yes, the port tuning in the Avatar probably is not maximizing the 3015LF's low end ability and the crossover isn't as thoughtfully designed either. The mid driver, it's placement and the crossover is going to make a bigger difference in how it sounds to everyone, as opposed to the just the bass player himself.

    I'm not sure what the big deal about price is. I built my 15/6 fEARful for $436 at a time when the Avatar was still selling for $400. Granted, I did not add the horn or the slightly higher priced crossover to accommodate that. But still, the price difference between the Avatar and building your own fEARful is not all that great for the superior designed fEARFul (slight as that difference may be to many).

    I feel many people are blowing the cost of building a fEARful out of proportion and making it out to be an outrageously expensive boutique cab. It might very well be if it ever becomes readily available through dealers. But it is not now (neo prices notwithstanding, even though the Avatar uses neos as well). One can buy complete kits or even have someone else build it for you...though it adds to the cost. Guys who have bought the cut kits have assembled them in the kitchen or living room in a day, even without much if any woodworking knowledge.

    Either cab is going to be much better than most of what's out there.
     
  5. I guess my real concern is the difference in LF output. The tb153 seems to be a similar sized box to several other avatar models. As has been mentioned before, quite a few companies seem more concerned with having all of their boxes look nice when stacked then being tuned properly.
    So yeah I want a cab that has significant low end. I rarely need output above 2k so the tweet is superfluous to me.
     
  6. Col Pruse

    Col Pruse

    May 28, 2003
    Savannah, GA
    building a fearful may not be too expensive as Sundogue says, but some of us don't have the time or cab building wherewithall which makes the Avatar appealing. Some of the prices for the authorized fearful builders are pretty high. I haven't seen what the LDS cabs go for.
     
  7. Sundogue

    Sundogue

    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    Yes, the Avatar TB153 uses the exact same box as the 410. :confused:

    The fEARful was meticulously designed to maximize both drivers working together as one unit. I haven't played the Avatar, but I do know that my fEARful 15/6 kicks out some seriously deep, loud (and most of all) CLEAR low end. One of the few cabs where the displacement limitation is almost the same as it's thermal (wattage) rating. Not sure where the Avatar's displacement limitation is, as I've never modeled it.
     
  8. Sundogue

    Sundogue

    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    As I mentioned in a previous post...

    "Guys who have bought the cut kits have assembled them in the kitchen or living room in a day, even without much if any woodworking knowledge."

    I built mine from scratch in about two weeks, at about maybe one or two hours a day max. I run my own business, work another job, and I have four kids (from age 5 on up to 17). I know all too well about limited time (and money). :D
     
  9. Sliderbass

    Sliderbass Dr. Bass, The best cabinet you'll NEVER own! Supporting Member

    I received my 15/6/1 last week from Don. It was more $$$ than the Avatar cab but its closer to the design of the actual cab than the Avatar (mid/tweet driver placement aside). I was in the same boat as you. I've had Avatar cabs in the past. Nice, but not for me. Don was the way I chose and I'm happy.

    Of course, Speaker Hardware selling cut kits is a very interesting development. The price is right and I understand that "anyone" can put them together. Look at one of those if you can find the time and the room.
     
  10. kesslari

    kesslari Groovin' with the Fusion Cats Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2007
    Santa Cruz Mtns, California
    Lark in the Morning Instructional Videos; Audix Microphones
    Calaveras - I'll be gigging my LDS nEarful at Caravan in San Jose on April 30 if you want to come hear it.
     
  11. My point exactly.
    I'd like to taste the koolaid,
    but my non-work hours are pretty busy. I actually have most of the tools, I can get a router from the tool library. But that jsut isnt gonna happen. I also have a bad habit of starting projects, too bad I don't have a corresponding habit of finishing projects.
    (eyeballs, synth, mic pre and DI box).
     
  12. Sundogue

    Sundogue

    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    Me too. My wife understands my "start but don't finish" habit all too well. Strange how when I have all these household projects to finish, I still managed to finish my fEARful. Just a matter of priorities. :D
     
  13. I think one of the big selling points to the Avatar boxes is the ability to get them in 4 ohms. No where else I know of can offer a 4 ohm, single 3015LF equipped cab. So despite some perhaps shortcomings you are able to get the most juice out of your "mini/micro" head without having to schlep 2 cabs.
     
  14. christw

    christw Get low!

    May 11, 2008
    Dayton OH
    THE MADDEST SCIENTIST
    Hey, I'm of the school who wants one but isn't going to build one because I haven't got the time. I just want to know if the benefits of an LDS built 15/6/1 really make up for the price difference between it and the Avatar TB153. (Approx $100 with a quote after the neodymium price jump.)

    I'm thinking that I should go LDS when I have the cash but it'd be sweet to save $200 (I want two cabs) if that Avatar's can really kick it. I'm just afraid that they wouldn't be as good by a significant margin.
     
  15. Sundogue

    Sundogue

    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    That is a good option and was even tempting me. But in reality the difference between 4 or 8 ohms is going to be negligible volume-wise in most cases. Also, consider that the sensitivity and some other T/S parameters change with the ohm configuration. Yet both the 4ohm and 8 ohm are going into the exact same box.

    Still, I can see where that is appealing to many. If I bought a 4 ohm version, I'd want the T/S specs of that 4 ohm driver and then build a better cab for it.
     
  16. Sundogue

    Sundogue

    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    Go with LDS. If you are going to the trouble of getting a fEARful/nEARful why not just spend that little extra cash and have Don build to spec. They'll more than likely be the last cabs you'll ever buy. They are really GAS killers and that alone will save you perhaps thousands over the long haul.
     
  17. rpsands

    rpsands

    Jul 6, 2007
    The big selling point of Avatar to me is getting one in a couple weeks as opposed to two months (+).

    Downside to all the 15" models now is that shipping them is up to like 80 bucks. Insanity. :(
     
  18. christw

    christw Get low!

    May 11, 2008
    Dayton OH
    THE MADDEST SCIENTIST
    I have a Bag End 410 and 210 that are already amazing cabs. The down side is that they're heavy and I don't like that. They're a 100 lb 410 and 79 lb 210. My Mesa cabs are lighter so I use them more.

    Anyways, they're great things and I want something a little lighter but definitely true to sound. I figured there's not many more tiers to go for quality speaker cabs, so why not shoot for the top and finish upgrading. :D
     
  19. m0ntels

    m0ntels

    Jan 20, 2011
    Quakertown, PA
    The Avatar cab is right under $550 shipped. The flat pack with the same options (tweeter, prebuilt xovers, Emi mid, handles, 1/4 and speakon) comes out to $760 shipped. Assembly is free and doesn't take long I'm sure, but then you're still left with a plywood box. No tolex, no line-x, no paint, no grille. Paint and line-x are under $20, but tolex doesn't seem like something easy to get right the first time so add that learning curve in. Whatever finish you choose is going to add more to the cost. So off the bat there is a >$200 price difference. Going up to the 18sound mid adds about another $50.

    I'm not looking to provoke anything here, but to many $200+ isn't pocket change. To me, the 2 cabs aren't marketed to the same crowds anyway. The flat packs seem more like a "custom" Carvin bass catering to someone who wants something almost one-of-a-kind where the Avatar is for the guy happy to play a decent import bass.
     
  20. christw

    christw Get low!

    May 11, 2008
    Dayton OH
    THE MADDEST SCIENTIST
    I'm happy to play both kinds of basses and I occasionally also appreciate the quirkiness of some cabs. :D But I also want a deep, clean rig.

    Oh dangit, I asked about a 15/6, not 15/6/1. That might be part of it.