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Clarus + cabinet impedances: Acme B1 vs. Euphonic CxL-110?

Discussion in 'Amps, Mics & Pickups [DB]' started by David Allport, Dec 9, 2001.


  1. I've read the previous threads on Clarus and various cabinets, but there's an angle that I haven't seen covered regarding impedances of the cabinets.

    I'm looking for a lightweight cabinet for the Clarus, and am considering the Acme B1 or Euphonic CxL-110. From what I've read, they may have broadly similar sound characteristics (flat, "hi-fi"). My question regards relative loudness. I have seen suggestions that the Acme is power inefficient relative to other bass cabinets, although there's a discussion at http://www.acmebass.com/ about whether this is true that I don't understand.

    However, the Acme is available in 4 Ohms, into which the Clarus 300IA can deliver 200 Watts, whereas the Euphonic is only available in 8 Ohms, into which the same Clarus can only deliver 120 Watts. So it would seem to me (an electronics ingenou), that broadly speaking if the Acme has more than 60% of the efficiency of the Euphonic, it's going to be louder.

    Plus I have a concern that with Clarus+Euphonic, I'd be delivering 120 Watts max into a cabinet rated at 350 Watts (which may be a bad thing for clipping etc), whereas with Clarus + Acme 1B I'd be delivering 200 Watts max into a cabinet rated at 175 Watts, which may be a good thing.

    I know that all the above is RMS, and that peaks will be a different story, and that the only way to really find out what works is to try it. But since the Acme is only available directly from the manufacturer, I'm trying to gather enough info to decide whether it's worth buying it in order to try it out.

    So even if no-one in the forum has actually tried the Acme, I'd appreciate comments on whether my reasoning about the relative volume issue is correct.

    Also, if the above reasoning is correct, it raises the question of whether there is another "hi-fi" URB-friendly 10" (or even 12") lightweight cabinet on the market with impedance of 4 Ohms, apart from the Acme??

    Thanks for your help!
     
  2. Sam Sherry

    Sam Sherry Inadvertent Microtonalist Supporting Member

    Sep 26, 2001
    Portland, ME
    Euphonic Audio "Player"
    Welcome here, as much as I can individually offer welcome.

    "Watts" is a function of volts into ohms. Over-simply, 200W into 8 Ohms "is" as much power as 400W into 4 ohms. The quotes around "is" reflect that it's more complex and not exactly one-to-one from the engineering perspective. From the player's perspective, there shouldn't be any substantial, audible, gig-worthy difference.

    The measure of a cabinet's efficiency is the dB/power figure. You can probably find them on the manufacturer's websites.

    Hope this helps.
     
  3. Samuel,

    Thanks very much for the welcome and quick response. It raises two other questions:

    First, the Clarus specs on their website rate the ouput power of the 300 IA as 120 Watts rms into 8 Ohms, 200 Watts into 4 Ohms, and 300 Watts into 2 Ohms, so there is clearly some kind of non-linear relationship here. Does this mean that the Clarus itself functions more or less efficiently with different loads, and if so, is high or low Ohms better?

    Second, the Euphonics website quotes the CxL-110 db/Power figure as "Sensitivity (@1m w/2.83 vrms) 103 dB" whereas the Acme website quotes the db/Power figure as "Sensitivity 90 dB 1W/1M", and the discussion I referred to on Acme's website which I don't understand says that these two measurements are not equivalent, so this is not an apples to apples comparison. Is it possible to derive an approximate "bottom line" comparison between the two sets of specs, given the match with the Clarus amp??
     
  4. Sam Sherry

    Sam Sherry Inadvertent Microtonalist Supporting Member

    Sep 26, 2001
    Portland, ME
    Euphonic Audio "Player"
    Originally posted by David Allport

    The Clarus specs . . Does this mean that the Clarus itself functions more or less efficiently with different loads, and if so, is high or low Ohms better?

    I don't know. (How ABOUT that?) My suggestion is to give them a call and ask. Seriously, it's not like you're calling Gibson!

    this is not an apples to apples comparison. Is it possible to derive an approximate "bottom line" comparison between the two sets of specs

    These two specs don't seem to match up, unless someone out there knows how to reconcile them. I suspect that the answer is that the Euphonic guys' were running one watt and providing more detail, and that the Acme is in fact considerably less efficient. I know the Euphonic guys are great to talk with and will answer your questions.

    Hope this helps.
     
  5. daveemac

    daveemac

    Dec 6, 2001
    SF, CA
    The proper standard of measure is 1Watt@1Meter. This means: how many db (or spl) will be produced at a distance of one meter from the speaker when the when the speaker is being driven by one watt. When a company wants to make their efficiency sound higher they'll quote the 2.83 number: it's a way to get a higher number. However, this only makes a difference of (I would say in this case) about 3-5 db. So the acme is still much more ineffecient of the two. Regarding the 4ohm/8ohm question, I really don't know, but I can tell you this:

    I'm getting ready to get a clarus myself, and I ruled out the acme for it's low efficiency. The 4-ohm issue adds a new wrinkle which I don't fully understand, but regardless, the low efficiency isn't a good match for even a 200 watt head. You have to double wattage to get a 3 db increase in sound, so for the acme output to equal the euphonic cab at 120 watts you'd need about 960 watts if we assume that the euphonic is about 99 db 1W/1M. The acme doesn't sound like a good match with the clarus. Bag end, aguilar, and euphonic all have efficiency around 100db.

    Hope this helped.
     
  6. The EA cxl110 is 103db.
     
  7. daveemac

    daveemac

    Dec 6, 2001
    SF, CA
    Bassboy, did you read my post?

    The euphonic is using a different standard of measure. Theyr'e telling you how many dbs will be generated at one meter w/2.83 watts through the cab. This means the actual efficiency of the cab is more like (now that I really think about it), 98 db 1W/1M., which still means that you'd still need about 800 or 900 watts on the acme to equal 120 into the euphonic.

    The euphonic is still more efficient than the acme, just not quite so much as it might appear at first.
     
  8. Sorry about that!! I think I was a little distracted. I was cooking some pizza while reading the posts tonight and I think I missed it altogether! You are 100% correct, I didn't read your post. :D
     
  9. Bob Gollihur

    Bob Gollihur GollihurMusic.com

    Mar 22, 2000
    New Joisey Shore
    Big Cheese Emeritus: Gollihur Music
    That is not correct. If you revisit their page, you'll see that the Euphonic efficiency is not stated in watts, but @1M w/2.83 vrms -- the same standard measure.
     
  10. Many thanks for the helpful replies. I called Clarus this morning, and they confirmed that it is indeed better to have a 4 Ohm cabinet than an 8 Ohm, if the cabinets have the same efficiency. The reason the Clarus delivers less power at higher Ohms is because its output becomes limited by the power of the transformer.

    However, I have been unable to find a suitable single-speaker 10" or 12" cabinet at 4 Ohms, other than the Acme. In the light of the answers posted here, the Acme at 90db is at least 4x3db less efficient than the Euphonic, which means that it only has 6.25% of the efficiency:eek:

    On the good news front, however, the guys at Clarus also said that the new generation amps have higher power output, now giving approximately 250 Watts into 4 Ohms and 140 to 150 Watts into 8 Ohms. So when my new Euphonic arrives it should be one louder:cool:
     
  11. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    I don't understand the math, but my (older) Clarus sounds fine for quieter gigs with one 1x8" cab (to which it is fixed to the top, like a homemade combo). For louder gigs, I take a second 1x8" cab and run the clarus at 4ohms, and I've never needed more yet. It's a nice solution, because most of the time, you get to carry less gear.
     
  12. 2.83V is the incorrect test to run if the cabinet is a 4-ohm model. Since P = V^2/I, if I=4 and P=1, V=2, not 2.83.
     
  13. abaguer

    abaguer

    Nov 27, 2001
    Milford, NJ
    I recently ordered an ACME b-1 at 4-ohms for precisely the same reason. I also ordered a lowb-2 to use with a walter woods ultra high head. When I was placing the order I specifically asked Andy Lewis of Acme about the impedance factor. I said I wanted to buy a Clarus in the future to use with the b-1 and he said since I wanted to use it for upright and electric upright low volume gigs that the Clarus would be able to drive the b-1 if I got the speaker at 4ohms.
    The acoustic image website also has a quote from a player who uses the Clarus with an Acme B-1 and says he is very happy with it (in the testimonials section).
    Of course the playing situation is very important. A loud drummer will probably make the Clarus/B-1 combination hard to hear but that's the way it goes.
    I'm also assuming that two b-1s at 4 ohms will allow the Clarus to deliver 300 watts into the 2ohm impedance. I'll let people know how I like the ACMEs when I get them. I'll be using that two-week period the company gives you to test the hell out of them.
     
  14. Chris wrote:
    As (Hail) Bob said, Euphonic's 2.83 measurement at 8 Ohms really is the same as 1W/1M, so the Euphonic is 103 db, compared to Acme's 4 Ohm 90db. As Daveemac pointed out, for each additional 3db you need double the power. So the difference is at least 12db, which is 4X3. If you double 6.25% four times, you get 100%. Therefore the Acme is (somewhat less than) 6.25% of the efficiency of the Euphonic.

    My "one louder" math is entirely different. That refer's to Spinal Tap's amplification system, where the volume controls go "all the way up to eleven" :D
     
  15. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY

    MICHELANGELO'S CARPORT,

    I got the Spinal Tap part loud and clear, even though it came AFTER the puppet show. What I don't get is all the formulas...but I know what sounds good, and the Clarus sounds good at 4ohms. A bit "hotter" than when only using one 8ohm speaker, but still damn good. I've used it on a rock gig with a (4ohm) 2x10" cab, and it held its own just fine, even though I didn't know enough math to understand how or why. Unless you're talking about playing over amplified drums, I'd recommend it to anyone.
     
  16. While the specs on it don't look as good as the EA's do, I've logged a little bit of time with the Bergantino 1x12 cabinet and I thought it was great. I've found the EA VL series speakers to be a bit too flat for my tastes, but another thread mentioned that EA's new CXL series are "punchier" than the VL's. Actually, someone mentioned some similar sonic characteristics to the Bergantinos.

    Also, Epifani's 1x12 is pretty strong, but I found it to be a little bit too silky, and the significant cone movement concerned me a bit - it didn't inspire confidence for louder, low-range applications. YMMV. :)
     
  17. I don't think either the Bergantino 1x12 or Epifani 1x12 is available in 4 Ohms.
     
  18. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    Ok, time for my stupid question: what is it about a speaker design that determines the ohm load? Up until recently, I've always just assumed that all speakers were rated 8ohms, since all of the single speaker cabs I saw were rated 8ohms, and all of the double speaker cabs were 4 ohms. But I know there has to be more to it than that...
     
  19. Bob Gollihur

    Bob Gollihur GollihurMusic.com

    Mar 22, 2000
    New Joisey Shore
    Big Cheese Emeritus: Gollihur Music
    The individual impedance(s) of the speakers within, along with the crossover network, if applicable. If you peruse a pro speaker catalog you will often see the same speaker available in 4, 8 and sometimes 16 ohms; they just use a different coil. The ohm rating is a function of design specs, and while you can measure the resistance of a speaker with an ohmmeter to get a likely ohmage, the actual resistance (and ohm spec) varies with the frequencies being fed to the speaker.

    While Ohms Law is more mathematically complicated, it's not as hard with two like speakers. In series, add their rating (two 8 ohm speakers = 16 ohm load), in parallel, half the rating (two 8 ohm speakers = 4 ohms). But that's just a general rule for like values; there are other factors.

    The parallel also usually applies when you daisy-chain a pair of , or plug them both into the same head, speakers (most every one I've seen has been parallel) e.g., two 8 ohm cabinets are a 4 ohm load to the amp.
     
  20. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    Thanks for the explanation. One more question: will 2 8ohm speakers run in parallel always sound a bit "hotter" than a single one, even at low volumes? This could just be my imagination, but the difference in tone sure seems to be audible to my ears, even when the "volume level" that I'm perceiving is the same.