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Bass Cab as PA cab

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by thetaxmiser, Jan 21, 2014.

  1. thetaxmiser

    thetaxmiser Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2002
    Sonoma County, CA, USA
    I am looking at running guitar, bass, and electric percussion through a single cab for small venues. At first I was considering a powered PA cab like the K series from QSC. Now I'm thinking about one of the newer cabinet designs like Thunderchild, Fearless, Big E or other that could accomplish this task.

    I hope to get a cab that is great for bass (I am primarily a bassist) but also does the full range sound as good as a PA cab. I have a GK MB-500 Fusion for power and I may as well get a cool bass cab if I am spending the money.

    Any of these cabs particularly well suited for my application?
  2. Fat Steve

    Fat Steve The poodle bites, the poodle chews it.

    I hear that Fearful's will do the trick.
  3. jeff7bass


    Apr 9, 2009
  4. 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)
    Imo there's not a bad choice in the bunch. All have the excursion and bottom end extension to do justice to bass guitar (something you don't find in most "PA cabs" - they rely on subs for that); all have non-fatiguing high fidelity sound with low coloration; all have wide, uniform dispersion; and all can get pretty darn loud with enough power behind them.

    Part of the basic Thunderchild concept is borrowed directly from the PA cab world. We use a PA-style constant-directivity horn and cross it over to the woofer at the frequency where their radiation patterns match up in the horizontal plane (or close). The idea is to keep the coverage as uniform as possible over the audience area. I'm certainly not saying this is the only valid approach - just mainly wanting to clarify why we don't use a midrange driver in the Thunderchild cabs. Of theoretically possible interest is my variable-tuning port system (but if you have graphic or parametric EQ, that's even better); and the optional rear-firing tweeter for self-monitoring (which falls short of having real monitors).

    I've consciously avoided replicating the big powerful low end of Greenboy's designs, in the interest of giving bass players a wider range of choices. This lets me shrink the box size, but I pay the penalty. So my 112 cabs are comparable in size and weight to his 110 cabs; my 115 cabs clock in closer to his 112 cabs; my 212 is close to his 210; my 118 is close to his 115... BUT in each case, his cabs go deeper than mine (he often gives you the first overtone of low F#, whereas I'm usually only giving you the first overtone of low B). Tradeoffs, always tradeoffs... but frankly I think Greenboy's cabs will generally do a better job with electric kick than my cabs of the same size and weight because his usually have more output in the 50 Hz ballpark.

    Mike's Big E cabs are the real deal - they do many things better than anything else out there (yes including my cabs), and he can tell you which ones are best suited for your application. I'll just venture to say that his Flex 210 is truly awesome, and his other cabs are cut from the same cloth. You mentioned electric percussion - the Flex 210 will deliver electric percussion with amazing impact and articulation (I use a similar design in the high-end home audio world). Contact Mike, he's very familiar with all three of the brands you list, and I would trust him and his recommendations.
  5. thetaxmiser

    thetaxmiser Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2002
    Sonoma County, CA, USA
    That's another good PA speaker option Jeff7bass. Thanks.

    Thanks for the in depth reply duke. That really helps..
  6. Mike Arnopol

    Mike Arnopol Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 4, 2005
    Owner of MAS Soundworks
    Just talked to Duke and he mentioned this thread.

    Again---any of the 3 you mentioned would be great. Duke and Greenboy are kindof mentors for me as far as cab design.

    I'm very familiar with all three. (having built them all)

    You want ruler flat and elegant---you can't miss with the Thunderchilds.

    The fEARless cabs are a big step in evolution for Greenboy. I wouldn't have recommended the Fearful for PA (although they're killin' bass cabs) but the fEARless cabs are great. Not as flat as Duke's but a nice midrange and upper end zing that is still musical. And great bass extension.

    I can't say much about my cabs---just that obviously I prefer them---but that's my taste. What I can say is that the PA and Duke's uber high end hifi cabs(Big E ones) all share similar design and components.

    Again--you can't go wrong with any these three. While there are many great bass cabs being made by different manufacturers I feel that you hit on the best double-duty cabs.