Dismiss Notice

Psst... Ready to join TalkBass and start posting, make new friends, sell your gear, and more?  Register your free account in 30 seconds.

downfiring the low?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by acexxxoasis, Jun 29, 2005.


  1. acexxxoasis

    acexxxoasis

    Apr 12, 2005
    I have a question what is the volume difference between a downfiring cab and a straight facing cab? Would the downfiring be quieter with more bass response? will volume be close to a forward facing cab?
     
  2. 43% burnt

    43% burnt an actor who wants to run the whole show

    May 4, 2004
    Bridgeport, CT
    good question. Sorry I don't have an answer, but I'm curious about that as well.
     
  3. acexxxoasis

    acexxxoasis

    Apr 12, 2005
    me 2 lol and nice job on the DEP name
     
  4. 43% burnt

    43% burnt an actor who wants to run the whole show

    May 4, 2004
    Bridgeport, CT
    Ha ha, as far as the technical science behind why-I don't know. But, FWIW I know Schroeder cabs for example, which are real popular around here, use a front firing speaker and an angled speaker. Or other combinations in that type of configuration. He claims his 1210 cab is louder than most 4x10s, w/ cleaner, rounder tone in a lightweight package. Looks pretty sick. Mesa boogie has a floor firing cab configuration too.

    Someone should do an investigative report about this phenomenon, and enlighten us.
     
  5. The Mesa Walkabout cabs have a bottom loaded passive radiator, which is quite a bit different than a 'floor firing' speaker. The Schroeder is more of a 'pseudo folded horn', with the side angled speaker combined with the traditional front facing speaker.

    The only two true downfiring speakers I know of are the Acoustic Image stuff and the larger Flite cabs. I've played through both of these and find the down firing speaker does result in a seemingly larger, fatter low end given the size of these cabs. However, I find that the lower mids and punch suffers. This might be due more to the brands/components than the downfiring speaker, but I found both pretty similar in this regard.

    Hopefully, someone who knows the science behind these downfiring speakers can comment.
     
  6. acexxxoasis

    acexxxoasis

    Apr 12, 2005
    what about a vertical 2x10 with a down firing (kinda)15" cab Ive been trying my amp like that and my bass is HUGE but I have to pump my biamp more towards the low because its firing into carpet :p its kinda cool sounding but hard to get a good level between the 2
     
  7. illidian

    illidian

    Jul 2, 2004
    I remember reading (maybe here on TalkBass) that running your speakers like that would be a bad idea. It increases stress on the speakers, which have to go up and down, rather than side-to-side.

    For speakers designed to do such a thing, it shouldn't be a problem. But just planting a cab face-down is a bad idea IIRC.
     
  8. If you're against a wall, everything bounces back out front for a downfiring woofer. For outdoor gigs you may miss not having that "back wave" reflected back out front.

    Other than that, the most efficient cab should be louder I guess.

    Low freqs aren't very directional, so I dont' think it would make as much difference as you might think.

    Randy
     
  9. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
    A downfiring woofer will have increased sensitivity in the bass frequencies, roughly 120 Hz and lower, due to the effects of boundary loading. It will also have less sensitivity above roughly 500 Hz as those frequencies don't go around corners very well. So you can get a stronger bottom end with a downfiring woofer, but it has to be crossed over to another driver(s) to handle the midrange.
     
  10. popinfresh

    popinfresh

    Dec 23, 2004
    Melbourne, Aus
    Does the Warwick terminator have a down firing speaker?
     
  11. Bob Gollihur

    Bob Gollihur GollihurMusic.com

    Mar 22, 2000
    New Joisey Shore
    Big Cheese Emeritus: Gollihur Music
    I can address this somewhat from the standpoint of the Acoustic Image Contra/Coda/EX, they have a forward firing tweeter and 5 inch midrange along with a ten inch downfiring woofer. See http://www.urbbob.com/accimg.html for photos and info.

    First, to my ears these downfiring boxes have a similar character to a rear-ported bass speaker, one which also depends on room boundaries for bass reflection. The use of a midrange and tweeter by the Acoustic Image stuff does still produce some directional character, similar to a rear ported cab.

    As far as volume goes, that will depend on the cabs involved. IME most good-sized "subwoofers" are infinite baffle cabinets (there are no ports). Sealed cabinets usually have a lower efficiency level than ported cabinets, so less volume would result from the same power level.

    So, generally speaking, yes, I'd think the downfiring speaker would be quieter, but bass response would depend on the driver, cabinet design, and how close you were to a wall and/or corner. It also would not be a substitute for a full range cabinet as midrange wouldn't be very present.
     
  12. On second thought, it probably depends on enough things that we shouldn't generalize... You need to listen to the DF cab in question vs the other ones you're considering. Lot of different ways to skin the same cat. The variations due to the design details of each cab has more impact sometimes than the general type of cab.

    Generally, 210's don't produce much bottom, but EA gets monster bottom out of a 210. It really depends more on how they implement the design, not which generic design they start with.

    Except I agree that the DF cab clearly would be more affected by room placement/proximity to walls like a rear ported cab vs front ported or sealed.

    Randy
     
  13. tombowlus

    tombowlus If it sounds good, it is good Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2003
    North central Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    Good point. EA's excellent incorporation of the transmission line design really has a huge impact on the depth and tone of their cabs.
     
  14. Excuse my ignorance but what exactly is transmission line design? Man that rhymes so nicely :)
     
  15. I "think" its some sort of internal folded horn for the back wave. That takes the back wave of speaker and puts it out the front of the cab. Looks the same as ported, but the internals are different. The Transmission line puts the back wave through a maze of internal passageways first. Ported cabs just have an opening in the cab to let the back wave out. Both have the speakers facing forward like normal ported or sealed boxes.

    Randy
     
  16. tombowlus

    tombowlus If it sounds good, it is good Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2003
    North central Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    You can read about it on the EA website, here.

    Tom.
     
  17. Bob Gollihur

    Bob Gollihur GollihurMusic.com

    Mar 22, 2000
    New Joisey Shore
    Big Cheese Emeritus: Gollihur Music
    Agreed, when a question is specific to a particular piece of equipment, generalizations aren't necessary. However, when you're talking concepts, I can only reply with a generalization.

     
  18. Absolutely correct. That is all he actually asked about.

    Suddenly I just thought... why's he asking that, and figured just in case he's asking to rule out buying one type of cab, vs another, its good to mention these aren't hard / fast rules. Listen to examples of both types, 2 particular different types of cabs could sound more alike, and 2 similar designs of cabs could sound completely different.

    Randy
     
  19. acexxxoasis

    acexxxoasis

    Apr 12, 2005
    actually I was wondering about tilting my 15" forward and having my 2x10s for the mid to high and my 1x8" for all the highs...


    its overwhelmingly bassy or overly tinny so its a meh idea