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Greenboy / Barefaced / Audiokinesis questions

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Amajew, Jun 16, 2017.


  1. Amajew

    Amajew

    Jan 11, 2016
    I've been doing a bunch of research on the different 212 offerings from the manufacturers above. I've emailed the cabinet makers as well as asked numerous members what their take on the cabinet/s they've bought and their thoughts regarding them to their previous setups.

    Some questions I have to the users that have A/B'd more than one brand as well as what your take is with powering a 212 with an 800W 4 ohm source such as a Mesa D800. I will be keeping the amp, just looking for a new cabinet.

    The cabinets I currently use both have pros and cons. 2 Aguilar Db112's and 2 GK Neo212's. The main cons are lack of good low end projection, especially from my B string. Also the high string articulation just gets lost in a band setting even if I hammer on the strings to try and get the volume to cut through.

    So what brought you to deciding the specific brand over the other offerings? Was it location to get it built? Customer service? The actual difference in tone and output vs another one of the comparable competitors?

    I know there is a good sized thread comparing these three builders but it was for the single 12" version.

    thanks in advance.
     
    slagheap likes this.
  2. mmbongo

    mmbongo Dilly Dilly! Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    Carolinas
    I considered all of the above, but in the end went with dual Mesa Subway 15's. I'll put them up against any of those 212's. Have you thought about a modular setup like that? I went with them mainly because they are much easier to move around, they cost about the same, they have the Mesa warranty and service, and they sound incredible. I can't say that I've directly compared them to any of those cabs, but once I heard them I knew there was no use in bothering.

    Not to derail, just presenting another option that's designed from the ground up to work optimally with your amp :)
     
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  3. monsterthompson

    monsterthompson The Eighth Note Wonder Of The World

    Nov 25, 2008
    Hollywood
    I started with Greenboy. I went from a fEarless to a Fearfull. Both were 115 cabs from the same builder. It was a dreadful mess and didn't work out well. When the cabs worked, they sounded fine, but I don't know that they sounded as they should have. I don't think my experience was representative of what you'd get with the current authorized builders out there (my builder was removed from that list and is now building other cabs that seem to make people happy).

    I ended up with Barefaced next. Alex is a brief, but delightful person to deal with via email. I didn't love the tone of the brand new cab Super Compact when it first arrived, though it changed as it broke in and I adjusted my EQ and amp settings, and I came to like it. I started off with the Super Compact, then added a Super Midget, then flipped them and went to the Big Baby 2. The SC would've been fine as a bass cab, but I started doing some synth and drum machine work and I wanted a full-range cab with deep bass capability. If the 112 cabs are scaled down versions of the 212 offerings, then I'd expect the 212 cabs to be wonderful. There are a few satisfied users floating around. The cabs I've had produce good, accurate sounds, which come close to what I get when going DI into my DAW. I've been playing these cabs for a few years and been very happy. They are quite light. They can take a ton of power. They aren't cheap. I think the sound of the Greenboy 115 boxes I had and tried was comparable to the BB2, though I never had them side by side. I liked the form factor of the BB2 better, and I didn't feel a lack of power with the 12" vs. the 15" driver.

    I did test a Hathor 1203 at one point. It was nice, but more voiced than either of the other two cabs/brands. The TC cabs are reportedly more refined and hi-fi, and probably not the best choice for harder/heavier music. I often play more aggressive music, so I didn't want the edges rolled off my sound. The 1203 sounded lovely, but at the time I already had the Super Midget and Super Compact, and I wasn't moved enough by the 1203 to flip the SM. I think I would've needed two 1203 cabs to get what I needed, whereas the single Super Compact was enough for my needs. I presume a stacked pair of 1203 cabs could get louder than a SC, but I wasn't in need of that much power. Duke is a lovely person to deal with. If I were in need of another cab, I wouldn't have any hesitation dealing with him.

    I'd say the Greenboy or Barefaced boxes are going to help you cut through better than the Thunderchild. I think the voicing on the Hathor will cut even more, though I'm not sure if it will pump as much low end as the others, though it should still handle the B easily enough.
     
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  4. nostatic

    nostatic Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2004
    lost angeles, CA
    Endorsing Artist: FEA Labs
    I wouldn't expect the DB cabs to have trouble with cutting through or being heard. Ultra low end extension - that I could imagine. The GK cabs have never been my thing.

    I have owned/gigged the TC112, TC212, and H1203. Briefly demo'd a few of the Barefaced cabs. They are nice but I prefer Audio Kinesis. Have owned/gigged other stuff in the past including Berg, Baer, EA, Epifani, MAS, etc. I have settled on the H1203 and have another one being built (actually a Changeling - an H1203 with an extra 3" speaker in the back). Pound for pound, I have not found a better cab than the H1203. It doesn't have ultra-low extension. It handles a B-string just fine, but you're not getting the fundamental. I don't want that anyway - I think that too much ultra-low just muddies up the mix but ymmv. The TC112 goes a bit deeper but is more even/polite in the mids/highs and I prefer a bit of edge in my upper mids to help me hear myself. The H1203's magic (same with the MAS cabs and the Baer) is the paper tone speaker handling the highs as opposed to a tweeter or horn. I also think it handles dirt better but again, ymmv.

    As for customer service, Duke at AK is at the top of the heap. I've also had great CS from Mesa, Baer, and MAS. All great guys/companies. My one hesitation with Barefaced is that it is in the UK, so for a US user, any problems are going to be more expensive to sort out.
     
  5. monsterthompson

    monsterthompson The Eighth Note Wonder Of The World

    Nov 25, 2008
    Hollywood
    I could almost see this post before you wrote it. I guess I've been reading your stuff on TB for a while. I totally understand and respect your positions and observations. As you and @mmbongo mentioned (regarding Mesa) the warranty/repair handling if/when something goes wrong is much easier to deal with if geography isn't an issue. I haven't seen many problems with Barefaced. However, it's hard to beat the convenience and coverage of a company like Mesa (and they sound pretty darn good, too).
     
    slagheap likes this.
  6. nostatic

    nostatic Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2004
    lost angeles, CA
    Endorsing Artist: FEA Labs
    The Barefaced cabs are cool, and if I wan't in downsizing mode I'd pick up a two-10 as that cab still strikes me as something particularly attractive (though certainly heavily voiced). Personally I like having some degree of coloration - just needs to fit with what I'm going for. The Hathor just works for me, the Mesa 1-12 works well too. There is a bunch of great gear on the market right now.
     
  7. Amajew

    Amajew

    Jan 11, 2016
    I hear you regarding dual subway 15's going up against a 212, but I'm wondering how the dual subway 12's or 15's compare to the volume of my gk Neo 212 stack? It's difficult to try out a bunch of the gear that I'm interested in based on the availability. I do have the opportunity to try out an F212 that I'm trying to work out the details of meeting up with the owner of that cab.

    I'm just leery of two mesa cabs not being loud and thunderous enough for what my need is to go over loud drummers and guitarists.. my 2 db112's work very well for most situations for musicians that understand volume control, but when you have 2 412 guitarists and a loud drummer they just can't handle that type of volume and the bass sound just gets lost. The GK's handle the loud volume no problem but the depth of my B string sucks.. the E string is actually more ballsy cause of limits of the capability of the cabinets.

    I did try out a single subway 15 and a single subway 210. By themselves they didn't have much balls but I'm wondering if 2 of the 15's will hit much harder than a single. I do notice that my 2 rigs are much louder when you have 2 of the same cabinet vs a single one of each cabinet. It isn't just double the balls or loudness, it's pretty much exponential.
     
  8. mmbongo

    mmbongo Dilly Dilly! Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    Carolinas
    I assume you have dual GK 212's (a 4x12 stack) if you're comparing them to Fearless, Barefaced, and Mesa Subway? I've not used a 412 setup so I'm not sure how they would compare....but you have 4 12's, that's a lot of speaker area. I don't think you would gain a whole lot soundwise by downsizing, especially considering the price. Of course any of those setups would be smaller and easier to move around. The Subway 115 stack will deliver the B string without issue though, dual Subway 15's easily match my GK 610 setup. I also have dual GK 112's that I use for practice and smaller gigs. They sound great and I love the size, but the Subways just destroy them when I need depth and volume. But like I said, I've not played through a GK 412 setup. It would have to be fantastic! I love my GK 610 (actually a 410 and a 210) and it works great because of the coupling that you mentioned. The coupling effect of two cabs together definitely gives you more than just 'twice the cabs', there is a real boost there.
     
  9. Amajew

    Amajew

    Jan 11, 2016
    That's the kind of info I'm looking for.... your dual mesa 15's match the 610 setup. and that your 112 stack doesn't hang with the dual mesa 15's.... that's exactly what my issue is... the aggies are awesome but having double the speakers (2 GK neo 212's vs 2 Aggie db122's) definitely is a game changer... I love the sound of the aggies but there is no way I'm going to carry around 2 70lb cabinets (meaning 2 aggie db or gs 212's).

    another thing that the greenboy / barefaced owners/reviewers state is the off axis capabilities with these cabinets. My GK 212 stack sounds great when you're in front of it and away from it but the off axis capabilities sucks. I could be standing in a sweet spot, then move one foot to the left or right and the sound becomes thin almost to where I cannot hear myself.

    I'm also skeptical of the greenboys and barefaced stating there is no coloration to the tone... I really don't understand that at all. I'm also uneducated to what flat sounding cabinets actually means. I like to plug in, tweak the eq a little and then just play. I'm not a big knob tweaker and some of the peeps on here talk about round, fat, warm, fizzy, zingy, honk etc with what they look for in a bass tone. Those terms and all the others mentioned in discussions can have a very different meaning depending on the player.
     
  10. Marial

    Marial weapons-grade plum

    Apr 8, 2011
    I only have experience with the AudioKinesis TC212. It will blow down a barn. I really cannot imagine needing a louder cab. With Duke's switches you can sculpt the tone and you have the added benefit of the pluggable ports. The TC series responds exceptionally well to EQ and I've also found them to work very well with effects. I currently have a TC112v3 (with the rear-firing speaker) and I have zero cab GAS except to get a second one, or maybe one of Duke's Changelings.
     
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  11. When I got serious about looking at high performance cabs, I was in a seriously loud band. I had an 810 that wasnt cutting it, but I had a very powerful tube amp. I decided to go with the baddest cab on the market, the fEARful 1515/66/1. It was lighter than the 410 I was using, louder than the 810, had better lows, better presence in the mix. It wasn't cheap, but there is a reason it is the cab I have brought to the majority of the gigs I have played since getting it. I was also lucky that there was a great authorized builder in driving distance from me, so that cut down on shipping across the country/ocean or paying import tax.

    Since then I have owned and played a number of other greenboy cabs, a 15/6, a pair of mirrored 12/6/1's, Bassic12, Bassic15, 1212/6, F112, F115, F212, DuallyT. The three that have stayed with me are the F212, the DuallyT, and the 1515/6/1. They fit the bill in size, weight, tone, and capability.
     
  12. ThrewSilver

    ThrewSilver Banned Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2017
    I use 2 Fearful 12/6's. I've also been considering a "super" 212 as I generally bring both cabs for gigs anyway. The obvious choice for me would be the Fearless 212, but money is significant factor. I doubt that any of the cabs from the builders you've asked about would sound anything other than fantastic. Those Eminence Kappalite LF drivers are no joke. I have been intrigued by the Barefaced Big Twin but I just have a hard time believing that his custom drivers can outperform the Kappalite LF 12's. Unfortunately these cabs are all VERY difficult to get chance to try out in person before buying.

    FWIW I used to own two GK Neo 112 cabs and once I had my Fearfuls the GK sounded pretty awful by comparison.
     
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  13. RasGK

    RasGK

    Mar 28, 2011
    Mexico city
    I have a Barefaced Super Twin, and it puts out as much volume as an 8x10, but with better dispersion, which makes it sound even louder, and with better low end response.

    I used to have a GK Neo 410 but I also felt the B string sounded weak in comparison to the E string, and the cab didn't quite cut it in a loud prog metal band, but with this cab that's no longer a problem.

    Volume wise, there is much more SPL available with the Barefaced, while staying totally clean where the GK started to fart out, so this cab has been excellent for that, specially being a one hand carry, at 40 lbs.

    Regarding your question about choosing one of these 3 brands, here are the points I considered when comparing the 212's of the 3 makers, Fearless 212, Barefaced Super Twin and Thunderchild 212.
    *Perhaps the BF Big Twin would have been the closest comparison to the F212, but since the cheaper, lighter and smaller Super Twin is available with the same loudness and still enough high frequencies for my needs (slap and brightness in the attack for a metal tone), I dismissed the Big Twin.

    I should clarify that I haven't heard all of this 3 exact models in person, so this is based only on the other models I've heard and on my understanding of all the research I've made, the reading of all the threads I could find on all of them, and extrapolating from the comparisons of other users, so anybody with real experience in comparing them is welcome to correct me if I'm wrong:


    -Out of the 3, the AK has a little less low end than the other two, although it still handles the B string just fine, and the Fearless probably has a bit deeper low end than the SuperTwin due to the bigger box (it probably has about the same as the Big Twin).

    -The Fearless is the heaviest, then the AK, then the BF.

    -The Fearless and the BF both have wheels, while for the AK it would be a custom request.

    -The AK has switches to modify the character of the mids and pluggable ports to change it's tuning and low freq. response, while the other cabs only have tweeter or mid attenuators or crossover frequency dials so the Ak is the most versatile of the three cabs.

    -Volume wise, the Fearless and the BF move more or less the same amount of air, and the AK perhaps a little less.

    -The Fearless is the biggest of them, and the other two have more less the same internal volume, just different form factor, with the AK being taller and a little deeper, and the BF being shallower and shorter, but wider.

    -The Fearless is the most expensive, while the AK and BF could have more less the same cost (depending your location) when you take into account that the BF has the shipment included in the price but you would probably have to pay import duties, while the AK doesn't include shipping in the price. For me it was a little cheaper to get the BF.

    -The Super Twin has less high end extension, only up to 10 khz (the woofer goes up to 4 khz while the center dome carries on from 4-10 khz but with less volume) while the other two go up to 20 khz. (Which again, for me wasn't an issue with the BF)

    -The Super Twin is perhaps a bit more efficient than the other two, due to the driver's increased sensitivity, so it may sound a little louder with the same amount of watts.


    So, to sum it up, I went with the Barefaced because it ticked all the right boxes for me, being the lightest, the smallest (along with the AK), the cheapest, and the loudest (perhaps along with the Fearless) of these cabs. The only trade-offs were the extra high freq. extension of the other two cabs, the extra lows of the Fearless and the extra tuning options of the AK, so for me those weren't as important as having the lightest and smallest possible single cab solution that covers my volume needs.

    Now, just as a side note, and as something I didn't really take into account on my decision, but that if true, could be an extra bonus for the SuperTwin, is that since the driver used in the Barefaced, the 12XN550 has a claimed volume displacement of 550cc according to Alex, while the Eminence Kappalite 3012LF used in the other two cabs moves 496cc, that could mean that the Super Twin moves even more air than the other two.

    The reason why I don't take this as a fact is that there are different methods for measuring volume displacement, so perhaps they are using different yardsticks for this comparisons. According to Mike Arnopol and Duke LeJeune, this is probably the case, but Alex Claber hasn't confirmed nor denied this, so it remains uncertain, but the point I see in favor of Alex's claim is that he was already using the Kappalite 3012LF in the previous generations of his BF cabs, so if he took years of R&D to redesign and change his entire line up of cabs around this new speaker, it wouldn't make sense if it were just for a marketing trick, and from what I've read about him, he doesn't seem to be that type of builder, dishonest in his claims, so my guess is there probably is something real about this statements, even if the difference is not as radical as it may seem on paper.


    So these are the thoughts that led to my decision. Your case and preferences may be different so you may end up choosing differently, but I'm very happy with my cab and I'm convinced it was the right decision for me.

    Either way, all three cabs have excellent construction, sound quality and customer service, so you would probably be happy with either one.

    Sorry for the long post, hope it helps.
     
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  14. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    I have several Greenboy fEARfuls, and I've heard several Barefaced and Fearless cabinets in use in various bars. They all sound great. I have long been intrigued by the Thunderchild family for upright, but have actually found my fEARfuls all are doing fine for that. I play about 1/2 of my gigs on upright.

    If I had to pick a single one of my fEARfuls, it would be hard. They all sound essentially the same. The only real difference is how loud and how big they are.

    For really loud Reggae or Rock with limited PA support, a pair of 15/6/1 cabs with mirrored baffles would be king, followed closely by a 15/6/1 on top of a 15sub. All are the "go big or go home" solution. Not all that heavy, but still requiring effort and a large enough vehicle. I take a hand truck.

    My 4 ohm 1212/6/1 comes quite close to a pair of 15/6/1 cabs, and is in one package on tilt-back wheels. This cabinet is more than I need for almost everything, so naturally, I have gotten fond of using it—even with upright!

    A single 15/6/1 has been my only rig for all my gigs in Hawaii (all reggae) for three years, and another one has served me well for Rock, Gospel, Jazz (upright), and PsychoBilly (upright) in Texas. They each weigh about 65 lbs. I could live with just using only one 15/6/1, but the 1212/6/1 is easier to move and never seems to run out of gas. Last year, I managed to fart out a single 15/6/1 with a bridged Crest Prolite 3.0 at an outdoor gig in Kaneohe, HI. The cab seems to have survived, as it has sounded fine ever since. Scared me silly, and got me more serious about managing low end, even with a 3015LF.

    I also have a 12/6/1 cube. This little cabinet was my main squeeze for a while, as it is the smallest/lightest. It got bumped when I found the 1212/6/1. There are a few permutations I have not tried, like 12/6/1 + 15sub, or 12/6/1 + 15/6/1, or even 1212/6/1 + 15sub, as they all seem pretty pointless.

    My advice is to find a used fEARful 1212/6/1 or 1515/6/1. They are both 4 ohm. A used cabinet from an authorized builder is a good bet. Either one can equal an 810 for volume, and each can have pretty much any identity, IMHO.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2017
  15. Pbassmanca

    Pbassmanca In the pocket n' thumpy. So woody, so greasy...

    God these posts make me want to buy a super twin...... Have you ever played through an 8x10 cabinet? Does the super twin really put out more juice than an 8x10? If so that is incredible and I must have one! I don't really need a lot of highs, just enough to make some slap sound decent. The gas is getting out of control........ #NoMoneyRightNow.....
     
    Jim Carr likes this.
  16. mmbongo

    mmbongo Dilly Dilly! Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    Carolinas
    Oh come now...let's not push it :)

    That being said, I've never played through a Super Twin or an 8x10. I did take Physics 101 three times though, before I passed it.
     
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  17. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    And I'd add that the Barefaced Bass Super Twin looks pretty intriguing, if you need light weight and have the budget. Would like to know more about Duke's AK 212.
     
  18. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    Calculate the total displacement of two 12XN550's vs. a typical 810. Then get back to us. Or perhaps go read what Alex Claber says about the drivers and cab. I don't think he is interested in fake specs. :thumbsup:
     
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  19. monsterthompson

    monsterthompson The Eighth Note Wonder Of The World

    Nov 25, 2008
    Hollywood
    Displacement and efficiency would have to account for quite a bit, but I'm not sure if I'd say it is an impossible differential. Of course, the big problem is comparing a specific Barefaced cab to a general 810. I'm sure 810 cabs can vary greatly. In fact I'd wonder how the Barefaced 212 would compare to a Barefaced 810 ;)
     
    Jim Carr likes this.
  20. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    We need a shoot out! :roflmao:
     
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