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B&C Speakers-- might upgrade shuttle 12 advice

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by SeayBass, Oct 10, 2009.


  1. SeayBass

    SeayBass Supporting Member

    Hi everyone.
    I'd like to know if any of you have used B&C speakers. They look good on paper, and I am considering using one of 2 models as an upgrade to my Genz Benz Shuttle 12T combo unit. I like the combo amp a LOT, but I'd like it better if the cabinet gave me more clarity on the low lows. I play low B strings a lot, and string bass.
    So I am considering a speaker upgrade to a Neo magnet B&C speaker, either the 12HPL76 or 12NDL76 models.

    The speakers are somewhere around $180+ each, so I'd like to know if it's worth the trouble before buying. . .
    I have read great reviews of all B&C speakers. I am curious if there are any talkbassers out there with experience.

    B&C website: http://www.bcspeakers.com/product.php?c=0000000001

    thanks in advance-
     
  2. The problem with putting a more expensive driver into an existing cabinet is that unless properly matched you could end up with a downgrade. You are going to have to model the cabinet and then find a suitable driver to match. Just buying a driver and installing it is a crapshoot at best.

    Paul
     
  3. allexcosta

    allexcosta

    Apr 7, 2004
    It doesn't work like that.

    Cabinets are built to speaker specs. You can't simply replace speakers of any cab with a different model and expect good results and reliability. Wrong porting will make a speaker sound wrong or damage it through over-excursion.

    That said, B&C makes good speakers, but I prefer 18sound or maybe RCF.
     
  4. Crockettnj

    Crockettnj

    Sep 2, 2005
    North NJ
    Some will say it wont work. Others will say its a crap shoot. Some a waste, others a great upgrade.

    The problem is that depending upon the circumstances, they can all be right or wrong.
    Factor in preference in tone, and personal bias's, and things really get muddy.

    The common refrain is that a cab is designed with the driver in mind, and that you can t just swap them willy nilly. However, just because a given speakr is initially sold in an enclosure does NOT mean its the best suited. It may be poorly suited from some standpoints. It may have adesigned in "hump" that some find boomy, others find thick.

    It may very likely have been a compromise decision between engineers and sales/marketing. We have heard time and time again about how retail cabs are built to a price point. Part of that price point is the selection of a driver. (for example, I'll reference GB's fearful thread early on, regarding specific conversations with the carvin tech regarding driver choice.)

    Add to all of this that there is a bit of leeway in what will and wont "work best", not to mention leeway in what everyone considers "best".

    So, imo I suggest that you approach this is an opportunity to learn. Determine your cab's internal net volume (not volume as in SPL, I mean volume as in area times depth!). Measure the port, and look up the cab's tuning frequency. Find the T/S specs for the driver you have in mind, and model it (or ask for help) and see if this will result in the type of performance you (or others) consider beneficial.

    There are a hundred threads on this topic, and thanks to about 12 or 15 really amazing TB'ers, the threads keep getting bettr and better.



    Or just buy it and oss it in and see how you like it. :)
     
  5. Boostedrex

    Boostedrex

    Feb 24, 2009
    Shreveport, LA
    I agree with Paul and allexcosta, you can't just throw a new driver into any random cab. Chances are it will probably end up sounding worse than it does now.

    That being said, I'm in the process of building a DIY cab using a pair of B&C 15NW100's. I love those drivers. 18Sound and Faital Pro also make some top notch gear.

    *edit* Google search for WinISD. It's a pretty solid box modeling prgram and it's free. Not the best, but it will help to get you in the right neighborhood.
     
  6. DukeLeJeune

    DukeLeJeune rational romantic mystic cynical idealist Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 24, 2008
    Princeton, Texas
    Owner & designer, AudioKinesis; Auth. mfg, Big E (Home Audio only)
    I have experience with some B&C speakers, including the 12HPL76. It has a very nice (and fairly rare) combination of unusually high efficiency and smooth top-end. The downside is, very high efficiency = rather weak bottom end. In my opinion it is not suitable for bass guitar UNLESS you plan to boost the bottom end. 3 to 4 dB of boost at 100 hz and below would probably do it... but, there goes most of the efficiency advantage. No free lunch.

    If anything, the specs of the 12NDL76 are even less suitable for bass guitar, again unless you plan to boost the bottom end. In that case, its unusually long linear excursion is an advantage.

    Chances are the Genz Benz box is tuned for somewhere in the 45-50 Hz ballpark, which should be fine from a mechanical power handling standpoint.
     
  7. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa, Product Support-Genz Benz
    Let me weigh in here... the drivers we use are custom built to provide very good performance in very small ported boxes. It is unlikely (actually VERY unlikely) that you will find a driver that works as well as the stock driver and some things to beware when swapping drivers that have not been optimzed as such are a deep derating of mechanical power handling, increased THD at lower frequencies, large resonances, and lack of definition.

    Small box solutions are very difficult to balance all the parameters for, and achieve high efficiency, wide bandwidth and high mechanical power. The odds are probably better in Vegas. ;)
     
  8. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Had not Andy said it, I would have. Genz Benz cabs are engineered about as good as possible from the factory. At best, you might get the same sound. Better is highly doubtful. Worse is the more likely result.
     
  9. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
    +1. These are nice drivers for their intended use, PA midbass, but they don't work in the low end as well as the original. From the standpoint of response what you've got is about as good as you can get with that cab, even a Kappalite 3012HO won't be significantly different. The 3012HO would go about 3dB louder in the lows, but that's not exactly huge. If you need more than what the cab will give the best way to get it is to add a 12T extension.
     
  10. SeayBass

    SeayBass Supporting Member

    all this is great advice. I am grateful you have shared your wisdom and knowledge with me. You have saved me time, money and probably lots of grief.
    it's actually what i was expecting. I have done enough work on speakers and cabs to know to ask advice from those who do it a lot more than me.

    One thing I was not expecting was the Genz man to come out and play!
    Now I am a little embarrassed about the post. I feel like I just got caught smokin in the bathroom!

    I have made my decision, so unless the rest of you want to discuss this, we can close this thread.
    I shall leave my Genz-Benz Shuttle 6.0 12T combo amp the heck alone. If it ain't broke, don't break it.

    I appreciate all the help and great info. Talkbass dudes ROCK. and so does the Genz-Benz Shuttle Combo- (obligatory apologetic)- hats off to agedhorse and the Genz crew.

    -over and out
    -seayhorse
     
  11. Fretlessboy

    Fretlessboy

    Nov 29, 2007
    St Augustine Florida
    Endorsing artist GENZ BENZ/HERCULES STANDS/XSonics
    Genz designs speakers and cabinets to work together. Want to lite it up? Add the matching 12t and watch your bottom get big.


     
  12. Fretlessboy

    Fretlessboy

    Nov 29, 2007
    St Augustine Florida
    Endorsing artist GENZ BENZ/HERCULES STANDS/XSonics
    You aren't far from Chuck's...go try the extension with that combo...I love it with extension


     
  13. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa, Product Support-Genz Benz
    Caught smoking WHAT in the bathroom? ;)

    The guys bring up a really good point that applies to all speaker combinations... adding another cabinet will get you way more than screwing around with trying to fine tune something that's already pretty well maxed out. Doubling the cabinets (with this baffle size and driver loading characteristics) will gain you a couple dB of net efficiency but more importantly you will gain some low frequency extension as well. This is IMO a significant improvement with any of the compact produvcts out there... if your application will allow it (size, space, weight, cost etc.)
     
  14. Fretlessboy

    Fretlessboy

    Nov 29, 2007
    St Augustine Florida
    Endorsing artist GENZ BENZ/HERCULES STANDS/XSonics
    the 6.0/12t combo with matching extension will fit in the trunk of any car and kicks pretty darn hard.
     
  15. Nook

    Nook Commercial User

    Jan 6, 2008
    Usti nad Labem, Czech Rep.
    owner, designer and builder - www.soundelirium.com
    Try B&C 12HPL64 instead...a VERY nice speaker...very sensitive, articulate on top, yet with relatively strong lows. I use it in a cab of 42 liters tuned 50Hz...weight of 9,6kg
    And...don't worry about its low power rating...it is capable of MORE than it seems...!
     
  16. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
    It is a nice driver, but it won't work any better than the driver he has now.
     
  17. Crockettnj

    Crockettnj

    Sep 2, 2005
    North NJ
    I was told by a salesman at B&C that the 12hpl64 is the driver that the epifani ul112 OEM driver is based off of.

    Regardless, between Bill, Duke, and Mr GenzBenz himself, it seems the jury is no longer out on the OP's question!
     
  18. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 20, 2004
    Madison WI
    HPF Technology LLC
    Bill, do you think the 12HPL64 would be OK for a keyboard amp? I am thinking that the jazz players I work with seldom go down into those low registers anyway, and many gig with 73 keys.

    I have one of these drivers along with a 6.5" Eminence mid, crossover, and a spare bass head, all gathering dust. The other possible use is vocal PA.
     
  19. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 20, 2004
    Madison WI
    HPF Technology LLC
    Indeed, the suspect confessed, and the jury was sent home. :D
     
  20. greenboy

    greenboy

    Dec 18, 2000
    remote mountain cabin Montana
    greenboy designs: fEARful, bassic, dually, crazy88 etc
    I think I have a WinISD driver file for that up in my webspace.
     

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