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Efficient Sealed AND Ported Cabs

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by bassballs27, Dec 23, 2016.

  1. bassballs27

    bassballs27 Supporting Member

    Aug 12, 2002
    Ontario, CANADA
    So, my emphasis on the AND in the subject line of the thread is not to indicate that I'm trying to decide on either sealed or ported designs. Both have their merits and ultimately it matters about their design. Just because a cabinet is either ported or sealed which you can visibly see doesn't necessarily mean anything..........until you try it! :)

    My question is with today modern designs what are some of the efficient designs available?
    Efficient in terms of perceived volume output to power input for the amplification of bass guitar!
    And with more meaning, I'm looking for cabinets that produce decent midrange frequencies with respect to the bass. Not try to just focus on 30Hz for the Low B or 40Hz for the Low E.

    So, what are efficient bass cabinets available? Please enjoy posting and most of all....have fun!

    Happy Holidays everyone!
  2. Snaxster


    Nov 29, 2008
    Hello. Two that I own are an MA Soundworks MAS-112 with the custom Eminence woofer and switchable B&C tweeter, and an Audiokinesis Hathor 1203.

    Both punch above their weight. And they offer excellent intelligibility, which contributes to their perceived loudness, I think.

    The larger and heavier of the two, the MAS-112 is very efficient.

    The little Hathor 1203 is not quite as efficient, but it meets your efficiency criterion. Also its pluggable port lets its woofer chamber be either ported or sealed.

    Both feature switchable midrange and high frequency settings. And for all their low frequency extension (unplugged), both sound very natural and present beautiful midrange.
    bassballs27 likes this.
  3. bassballs27

    bassballs27 Supporting Member

    Aug 12, 2002
    Ontario, CANADA
    Cool. Those MAS cabs look great.

    I was reading a little bit on these too:
    Omni 12 Fullrange

    What's out there for efficient sealed cabs?
  4. boamedt


    Jul 2, 2008
    Santa Rosa, Ca
    the omnis are a serious bass cab that is incredibly efficiant. Its also a really big heavy cab. I had an omni 15 ran by a carvin b1500 for a while. it slammed, but was eventually too heavy for me
  5. kesslari

    kesslari Groovin' with the Big Dogs Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2007
    Santa Cruz Mtns, California
    Lark in the Morning Instructional Videos; Audix Microphones
    I love my MAS cabs. They're incredible - amazing sound, best dispersion I've ever heard, and loud. I wouldn't describe them as "efficient" because it takes a lot of watts to get them loud. Whatever, I don't mind because these days watts are cheap.

    The Omni (and other Bill Fitzmaurice (BFM)) ARE super efficient - doesn't take a lot of watts to get them loud.
    I rocked an Omni 10 for years and loved it.
    I love my MAS cabs more. :D
  6. monsterthompson

    monsterthompson The Eighth Note Wonder Of The World Supporting Member

    Nov 25, 2008
    I've never played one of these cabs, but the Schroeder cabs have a reputation for being loud per watt, with many saying they are voiced to put more emphasis on mids, and less on lows.
    eff-clef and bassballs27 like this.
  7. 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)
    It is much easier to build an efficient ported cab than an efficient sealed cab, assuming similar goals for box size and even assuming that the sealed cab will not go as deep.

    The reason is, the kind of woofer that works well in a ported cab is one with a fairly strong motor, which gives very good efficiency, but that strong motor results in weak (overdamped) bottom end in a sealed cab. The weaker, less efficient motors that work well in sealed cabs tend to result in somewhat boomy (underdamped) bass in a ported cab.

    (The type of woofer that typically works well in a horn-loaded cab has a more powerful motor than even a ported-box woofer.)

    While it is true that my cabs come with pluggable ports, in most cases converting then to sealed mode is mainly useful for dealing with a very boomy room because most of my woofers are vented-box woofers. At the moment I have one cab that has sealed-box type woofers, and for that cab, I think of unplugging the port as potentially useful if you're trying to produce low end in a room that doesn't support the low end very well.

    Imo the little Hathor 1203 is reasonably efficient for its box size, but probably below average for a 112 cab (most of which are larger). My 115 cabs would be my entry in an efficiency horserace.
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2016
    wave rider, okcrum, Al Kraft and 6 others like this.
  8. monsterthompson

    monsterthompson The Eighth Note Wonder Of The World Supporting Member

    Nov 25, 2008
    The 1203 is impressive for the size. I think it was was line with my old G3 Barefaced Super Midget +/- a little, at the time I tried them side by side. The Barefaced Super Compact is a slightly bigger box and presented as "louder" than the SM. Alex at Barefaced will tell you the Super Midget and Super compact are equally loud. However (IME) the SC seems louder, most likely from the added low end of the bigger cabinet, even though the SM and SC use the same driver.
    DukeLeJeune likes this.
  9. Rick James

    Rick James

    Feb 24, 2007
    New Jersey
    Where efficiency is concerned there's not a huge difference between brands. You can only get so much out of a driver mounted in a direct radiator cabinet, which is one where you can fully see the driver. Ported cabs are more efficient in the lows than sealed, but that's about the only difference. You can use drivers with stronger magnets to get higher efficiency in the mids, like JBLs or EVs, but that comes at the cost of lows. Some of todays boutique and DIY cabs that use extra long excursion drivers will go louder than those with standard drivers in the same size cab, but they're not more efficient, they go louder because their long excursion can use more power to push more air.
    If you want a meaningful increase in efficiency you have to horn load the driver.
    My Omni 15 isn't much fun to lug, but if you want it loud and you want it low and you don't have a bazillion watt amp it will knock down walls like a D9 Cat. I seldom use mine, I mostly use my Jack 12. It's actually more efficient in the midbass than the Omni 15. It doesn't go as low, but when I've got good PA that doesn't matter. The Omni 12 is a lot easier to haul than the Omni 15, and it will kick some serious butt with not a lot of watts too.
    seamonkey likes this.
  10. ofajen


    Apr 12, 2007
    92.4W 38.9N
    If you look at cab sensitivity ratings you should get a sense. That EA 4x10 has a 106 dB rating, and that about the highest I've seen.

    Gizmot likes this.
  11. Rockbobmel

    Rockbobmel Supporting Member

    godblender likes this.
  12. Gizmot

    Gizmot Supporting Member

    Mar 22, 2009
    Nashville area
    i really like the EA stuff -I have one of their heads and speakers. It sounds really good and is very well made. However, based on what I know about acoustics, that sensitivity number is awfully high for a basic, not overly large vented system. The only thing that I wonder is if it were measured using quarter or half space loading (meaning that the system was tested sitting on the floor and / or against a wall)?
  13. tycobb73


    Jul 23, 2006
    Grand Rapids MI

    I was using 2 110's. A couple other bands were sharing a 410 115 stack. They and some of the bar patrons complained that I was too loud. I don't think I was running half power on my gk fusion 800.
  14. Rick James

    Rick James

    Feb 24, 2007
    New Jersey
    The only way any 4x10 has 106dB/1 watt sensitivity is in the mids, so if you play bass it's a worthless spec. What counts is the region around 100 hz, and no 4x10 can get 106dB/1 watt there. It's impossible. Sensitivity ratings without measured response charts to back them up are as phony as three dollar loonies where I live, or three dollar bills in the States.
    GregC and seamonkey like this.
  15. BostonJazz72

    BostonJazz72 Supporting Member

    Nov 30, 2010
    MAS are great cabs!
  16. BostonJazz72

    BostonJazz72 Supporting Member

    Nov 30, 2010
    The Phil Jones Bass cabinets are very efficient. I have the C8 and love it.
  17. TrevorOfDoom


    Jun 17, 2007
    Austin, TX
    fEarful. Any of 'em.
    Pretty much flat between 45Hz and 5KHz.
    Roughly 105dB at 1watt/1meter.
    In context, the average 4x10 is ~98dB, Bag End 1x15's are ~103dB, and the new Fender Rumble 1x12's are ~93dB.

    The fEarful's are the lightest, loudest, and lowest cabs that i've found.
    seamonkey likes this.
  18. Ampeg 810e.
  19. Rick James

    Rick James

    Feb 24, 2007
    New Jersey
    A dually might be 105dB 2.83v, but that's two watts. fEarfuls are no more efficient than most cabs. They can go louder than most because they use long excursion woofers, but they need high power to do it. I've had my Omni 15 side by side with a 15/6, and my Jack 12 side by side with a 12/6, the BFMs were a lot louder with the same amp setting. For that matter my Jack 12 beat the 15/6. Bag Ends aren't 103dB either. They might hit 103dB in the mids, but in the lows 98dB is more like it.
    GregC, Giraffe and seamonkey like this.
  20. jastacey

    jastacey Supporting Member

    Feb 8, 2009
    I believe the Bergantino HS-410 has a DB rating of 103, the so called reissue NV610 with horn has a DB rating of 103

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