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Hartke Pro 2200 NEO Conversion!

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Vic, May 1, 2006.


  1. Vic

    Vic There's more music in the nuance than the notes. Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    Here she is, weighing in at a not too bad 59 pounds, 300W
    power handling, 4 ohms, and with a pair of Eminence Deltalite
    (NEO) 12's parked in front ready to go. The speakers came
    from Dave at Avatar. Great guy, real nice price.

    I weighed the NEO speakers and they were right around 5
    pounds each. Not bad! :)

    The main reason for this project was to add a bit of power
    handling to the cab. At 4ohms, 300W is not a lot, and I
    don't want to blow this thing at a gig someday.

    Also, I REALLY like the sound of the NEOs in my Avatar 210.
    Now, admittedly, those are custom 10's for Dave with an
    increased xmax, whereas the 12's are standard Deltalites,
    but still, I figured these speakers would add some nice
    characteristics to the frequency response of this cab.
    I've never really been a fan of the Hartke speakers, tho
    I must admit, I'm really not that unhappy with the sound
    of these... at least in this cab, but again, I just love those
    NEOs!

    Finally, I figured if I could lighten it up, it could only make it even
    better. :)

    neo_hartke_01.

    music.

    The first thing I noticed was they didn't believe in much SLACK!

    Probably an anti-rattle measure, but it was a pain to get the
    new wires soldered on, because there was very little wire to pull
    out at all. The rag was just to catch any stray solder. I'm
    pretty careful about that stuff, but just in case.
    neo_hartke_02.


    music.

    Ok, so one speaker in, take a look. Interesting. Also, it's easy
    to see the NEO speakers are made much nicer with the cast
    frame.
    neo_hartke_03.


    music.

    The NEOs look larger because they're all black. The silver
    aluminum cone with the black suspension makes the Hartke
    speakers appear smaller.
    neo_hartke_04.

    music.

    I also weighed the Hartke speaker. 11 pounds! Not bad for a
    bass 12, but definitely heavy compared to the NEO speakers.
    There will be a better than 10 pound savings overall!

    music.

    Ok, so NIEFE (nothing is ever "fully" easy)... ;)

    Of course the newer speaker frames are just barely larger, and
    there was not enough clearance between the speaker hole and
    the plastic horn bell to clear the NEO speaker frames.
    Time for Mr. Dremel!
    neo_hartke_05.

    music.

    Marked myself a line on the bell to use as a guide, and went
    to town with the carbide cutter bit... BZZZZZZZZZZZZZ... :D
    neo_hartke_06.

    music.

    Viola! Looks like it was made that way from the factory. The
    bell still had plenty of material left, so no structural issues at all,
    and of course even if I put the original speakers back in, the line
    follows the curve, so it'll still look decent (even tho with the grill
    on you can't really tell anyway).
    neo_hartke_07.

    music.

    BAM!

    From 59 to 46 pounds, more clarity, more depth, more power
    handling (from 300W to 600W!), and a cooler look, IMHO.

    Announcing, the new NEO Hartke Pro 2200! :)
    This is now one badass cab.
    neo_hartke_08.
     
  2. Trevorus

    Trevorus

    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    Cool stuff, how's it sound? I thought about eventually trying this with my hartke 410xl.
     
  3. Vic

    Vic There's more music in the nuance than the notes. Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    It sounds more different than I thought it would. It immediately sounded brighter, which was a good thing, and more focused. So far, I'm VERY pleased. Also, at 45 pounds, this thing feels amazingly light for what it is and what it's now capable of power-wise.
     
  4. Trevorus

    Trevorus

    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    What're you doing with the old speakers, if I might ask...?
     
  5. Vic

    Vic There's more music in the nuance than the notes. Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    For now, hangin' on to them... just in case... I may decide to put them back in and do something else with these NEOs. I really like them.
     
  6. Trevorus

    Trevorus

    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    let me know if you do get rid of them, because I would build myself a 112, and put the other in a guitar amp for fun.
     
  7. Vic

    Vic There's more music in the nuance than the notes. Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    Bump just to maybe catch more viewers.

    I've actually been using this cab a LOT lately and it REALLY works well!!! I'm AMAZED... especially noting how much I really (personally) dislike pretty much all the other stuff Hartke makes. I've even considered pulling the logo off the grill. :D

    I hook this up to my ThunderFunk 550 or my EBS HD350, along with a Gramma, gives me a 500W 4 ohm load that barks like heck, and the angle front is awesome for smaller stages. I've always wondered why more manufacturers don't do this for all us players out there not wanting to haul a full stack around and do a lot of club gigs. I've always hated shooting my stage sound thru my legs, elevating cabs, or kicking them back and having no place to set my amp rig.
     
  8. xb100

    xb100

    Mar 24, 2004
    NH, In
    I think that's pretty cool personally.

    Did it take alot of work and money to do this project?
     
  9. Sean Baumann

    Sean Baumann Supporting Member

    Apr 6, 2000
    Livin' in the USA
    now that is just sick! How'd you know that the speakers would work well in this enclosure?
     
  10. Vic

    Vic There's more music in the nuance than the notes. Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    Really, no. Just the speakers, which shouldl be somewhere under $200 for the pair shipped... tho I haven't gotten a quote recently from him.

    Other than that, if it weren't for the 5min or so with the Dremel, it prolly woulda' been about a 30min job start to finish just de/resoldering and turning screws.

    Easy.

    I got a Pro 2100 cheap off evilbay recently and will be taking the custom Avatar NEO's out of my Avatar 210 and putting them in there. Jacks it from a 200W 4 ohm 210 to a 500W cab, and will drop some weight at the same time. I'm thinking that will be killer if the results are ANYTHING like on this cab.

    The 2200 has huge low end, maybe even a bit more than I need, and I've always been a big fan of 10's with their upper mid punch, so I'm really looking forward to the results on the 2100.
     
  11. Vic

    Vic There's more music in the nuance than the notes. Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    I didn't, because I had no access to the stats for those Hartke speakers. In short, dumb luck.

    The "bad" news is, I must be honest, even with the stock speakers I really liked the sound of this cab quite a bit. I'd say the only thing it's lacking is maybe a little bit of high end, but that could be the 12's as I'm more used to 10's, or it just could be a not-so-hot horn, but at least it's not "hissy" at all, which is what a lot of guys usually complain about with horns, as well.

    I still have the original speakers as well... I kept those just in case I decided to move the cab, 'cause I can always find a good application for a pair of decent NEO 12's. :)

    Stay tuned on the 2100 cab. Probably do that one next week. If not, then the week of the 24th.
     
  12. Vic

    Vic There's more music in the nuance than the notes. Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    Got a good question in a PM I think would be nice to post here in the thread...

    No, you can't necessarily, because if a cab is designed "properly", it's tuned for specific speaker stats for a certain sound. However, it's all subjective in the end, so IMHO, especially if you're unhappy with the current sound, and even moreso if it's a fairly generic design (straight up ported box), you stand a pretty good chance of getting good results... especially if you replace some pretty generic crappy OEM speakers with some pretty nice ones.

    In my case, this is a pretty uniquely designed cabinet, so I was not at all sure it'd work out well. It's one of the reasons I was so careful to make the horn bell mod look decent, because I didn't want to "burn the bridge" to put the original speakers back in and have it still look nice.

    It's a risk, however, because if you decide you don't like it as much, you're stuck with the speakers if you use solder. In my case, I knew I could use the NEO 12's somehow, so I really didn't care that much if it didn't work out, but hoped it would.
     
  13. Vic

    Vic There's more music in the nuance than the notes. Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    Update...

    My Pro 2100 should be here tomorrow. For those not aware, that's the 210 version of the 212 2200. I plan on putting a couple of Avatar's custom NEO 10's in that one and see how it turns out. Once again, running blind, but the 2200 turned out so nice I'm feelin' lucky. :) Plus, I'm pretty sure I won't have to mod the horn bell for that job.
     
  14. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    Chicago
    Well done Vic!
     
  15. Vic

    Vic There's more music in the nuance than the notes. Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    Thanks!

    Another update, the 2100 came this morning, and unexpectedly, it's smaller than the 212 to the point that there could still potentially be an interference problem with the horn bell, but we'll see.

    Of note, this cab is really smaller than the 212, which is actually kinda' cool. Other unexepected diffs are, this has spring loaded handles instead of the recessed handles like on the 212, it has much nicer casters (snap in with metal sockets -- the 212 has screw-in with teenuts), it has an attenuator knob for the horn instead of a three-way switch like on the 212 (on-atten-off), and the horn looks different.

    This could be a whole new ballgame here. I wasn't going to post pictures, but considering all the diffs, I think what I'm going to do is start a new thread and cross-ref these two.
     
  16. Vic

    Vic There's more music in the nuance than the notes. Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    Forgot to mention, and this will entertain some...

    This past Saturday night we played an outdoor festival (Sherman IL "homecoming"). Not a huge affair -- less than 1000 in the audience, but it was bigger than a club gig (on a pair of brand new looking aluminum flatbed trailers).

    Anyway, we had a guest guitar player on stage for a couple songs and he commented on how much output the 2200 had -- especially considering its size. He was familiar with Hartke stuff, and shared my lackluster opinion in general, but hadn't seen one of these before, and was very impressed. I had to admit to him it wasn't stock. :) However, it was nice to get a second opinion how notable it is. I didn't even mention the cab to him previously. This was out of the blue (normally, guitar players get glassy-eyed if a bass player starts talking about their gear, so I gave that up long ago :)).

    LOL!
     
  17. funky_bass_guy

    funky_bass_guy Guest

    Jul 30, 2004
    Very nice :) I am temtped to build a cabinet of this design, it makes great sense to me. You are very lucky it worked out, I keep reading of horror stories where it sounds terrible.
     
  18. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    Chicago
    Vic, I'm curious...if you already have an Avatar B210 Neo, why buy a Hartke 2x10 to install the same Neo 10s?
     
  19. Vic

    Vic There's more music in the nuance than the notes. Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    Because of the angle front. My big problem with a conventional 210 is they shoot thru your legs on stage. So you have two choices... kick it back, or elevate it. If you elevate it, you lose coupling, and it sounds thin. If you kick it back, you now have to set your amp on the ground or some other surface.

    Well, I have good news and bad news on the 2100...

    The good news... the cab sounds great even with the stock speakers. Suddenly I had that upper mid bite I was somewhat missing with the 212. Also, the NEOs bolted in perfectly with no mods necessary, and they already used spade connectors, so I didn't need to do any soldering either. Quick and easy job. Finally, as good as it sounded with the stock speakers, just like the 212 cab, it sounded better with the NEOs installed, and I more than doubled the power handling from 200W to 500W. All VERY good stuff.

    Now the bad news. My NEOs are chirping. They took a hit a while back, but I thought they were still ok, and the sound I was hearing in the Avatar cab was something loose... maybe even just a loose speaker. Nope. I think my NEOs might have issues. This is not a killer issue, I was going to order a new set for this cab anyway. The other bad news is, somehow, this cab is noticeably heavier than the 212. Even with the NEOs installed, and even though it's a smaller cab, it's still 11 pounds heavier than the 212. Not that 56 pounds is gonna kill me, but I was really hoping for the same or less weight than the 212 (45 pounds). I think it might be the wood. The 2100 looks like it's made of thicker wood.

    I was going to do a new thread, but I'll just include info here, since the job was so quick.

    Here's a few pics.

    neo_2100_1.

    neo_2100_2.

    neo_2100_3.
     
  20. Vic

    Vic There's more music in the nuance than the notes. Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    Just demoing these cabs for a buddy last night and he was stunned. He's also not much of a Hartke fan in general, but these cabs are just different in a very good way.
     

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