Blown speakers?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by CalEliteCoach, Oct 25, 2021.

  1. I have 2 SWR Goliath III 4x10 bass cabinets. I run them with an SWR 750x head. At performance volume, I have noticed they both have a buzzing sound. How do I identify a blown speaker(s)? If 1 or more speakers are blown, can I just remove the good speakers from cab 1 and put them in the other?
  2. Wasnex


    Dec 25, 2011
    If all of the drivers are the same, you can combine four good drivers in one cab.

    It's possible the drivers are not blown. For example, the noise could result if something is vibrating against one of the cones or if the driver is not screwed down to the front baffle. Damaged panels, loose grills, other loose hardware can also be a source of buzz.

    As an example I have GreenBoy Dually and occasionally I hear a buzz that drives me nuts. Pretty sure I have tracked the source of the noise to a corner protector that looks likes this.

    The screws were tight and it still buzzed. I removed and replaced it, and the noise stopped...for now. If the noise comes back I may try wedging a thin piece under the corner protector.
    CalEliteCoach likes this.
  3. delta7fred


    Jul 3, 2007
    One way to identify a blown speaker is first remove the grill to expose the speakers.
    Lay the cab on it's back (not absolutely necessary but I find it easiest to get a straight push).
    Gently push the cone back by placing several fingers around and just outside of the dust cap. It should move in and out smoothly. If it you feel (and hear) it scratching that is the coil rubbing and it needs replacing or reconing.

    I had one combo that buzzed at "performance volume", it was driving me nuts.

    I first blamed the speaker, then the grill, then the amp front panel, nope none of those. It turned out to be one of the spring loaded handles.
    ihixulu and CalEliteCoach like this.
  4. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa Boogie, Development Engineer-Genzler (pedals), Product Support-Genz Benz
    Often, it's hard to determine which driver is the cause, but in the event that the drivers were damaged due to overpowering (yes, it's the most common cause of driver failure regardless of what "the internet" says), it's likely that all of the drivers share the same damage even if only one is identified as causing the noise.

    On this era of cabinet, there was a transition from PAS drivers to Eminence drivers, but both shared a similar common mechanical limitation. There was very little difference between the small Xmax and Xlim. Xmax is the usable linear excursion and Xlim is the point at which damage occurred. The small Xmax was part of what was responsible for the classic SWR bright mid tone and high efficiency but as amps of all manufacturers evolved to higher power the shortcomings of this design became apparent. The Fender version of this driver was quite different, though still shared much of the tonal character of the original parts.

    Visually, it's common to see a crease or a discontinuity at the point the cone bonds with the surround when the speaker has been driven to it's Xlim. If this is the case (post pictures, we may be able to identify) than the only practical solution is to replace the drivers. The original parts are no longer available for either driver version.
    delta7fred, Wasnex and CalEliteCoach like this.
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