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Is there an ideal speaker size on a bass combo amp?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by in the wind, Apr 1, 2009.

  1. in the wind

    in the wind

    Dec 23, 2008
    Thanks, M
  2. Yep. The one that sounds best to you. Not to oversimplify here, but it really does come down to that. Or, another important question... What are your needs and expectations of the amp? Some considerations are portability, output, weight, compatibility with an add-on cabinet, etc. Some of these will likely help narrow down your list, and you can then rely on your ears for the final decision.
  3. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    WHy not oversimplify? It's a simple question, and that is the correct answer.
  4. wallybill


    Apr 4, 2007
    Tuscola, Il.
    Yes. It's a 15" speaker, connected to a B15N.
  5. Rick Auricchio

    Rick Auricchio Registered Bass Offender

    That's what wallybill likes, and it's a very nice tone. Your taste may differ.
  6. pringlw


    Nov 22, 2008
    Seattle Area
    Yes. Yes there is a correct speaker size.
  7. Whatever makes the tone that YOU like the most.
    I am a sucker for combos. I have one for every size except a 15.
  8. OtterOnBass


    Oct 5, 2007
    Ideal, now that's a word. Hmm, what does it mean... I think if there was one size that fit all situations, there would be an ideal. For now, no, there is no ideal. The larger the speaker, the narrower the dispersion of highs and mids. Do you want that?
  9. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I don't mind it so much as long as it's in an old Ampeg 810 or a B-15 cab ;)
  10. shoot-r


    May 26, 2007
  11. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    North Dakota
    If you put a gun to my head, I'd say a 12. I play a 10. I have played a 2x8 +5. I think a 15 makes a combo a little big, but I like em small and light.

  12. +1 all the way. I've yet to hear a 110 (except maybe the Acme or the Berg HT110) that can put out enough full tone at volume to really sound like a 'bass amp' for my needs, and a 15 or even a 210 gets quite cumbersome once you add in the head. If that's the sound you like, IMO it's better off to get separates for the schlep factor.

    A 112 8ohm Combo to me is the sweet spot.. still a one hander (assuming Neo and SMPS), and also able to do very large, loud gigs with an 8ohm extension 112 if needed.
  13. Alright, since we're talkin' personal preferences, I would like to express my stubborn individuality by agreeing wholeheartedly with Ken. :D

    The first thing I think of when hearing the word, "combo," is portability. You've gotta' be able to move the thing, otherwise you're defeating the purpose of an all-in-one unit. Of course, portability without good sound isn't very useful. So, I agree that a single 12" makes the most sense.

    FWIW, following that logic, I'm in love with my Genz Benz Shuttle 6.0-12T. VERY portable (32lbs), and just terrific sound. The cab is 8-ohms, and the back of the head has a second speaker connection just urging you to add an 8-ohm extension cab. The modular design is really a huge bonus, as I've used the head with my Epifani cabs on a number of occasions. That said, I'm really impressed with the sound - quality and output - of the combo unit itself. I've been using it on all of my small gigs, and it's obvious that its got more horsepower than I'm using. Just a terrific little rig.
  14. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    North Dakota
    When I bought my Shuttle they had a 110 and a 210 in stock. If they would have had a 112 I would have got that. Between the two, I went for the smaller 110. I may still go to a 1x12 in either the Shuttle Combo or separates.

    For most of my gigs the 110 is fine, but I do miss having a little bigger cab - just a couple inches more would make a big difference.
  15. Boy... this thread started out pretty tough on the OP. It's nice to see that as the thread moves on people are starting to talk about their personal prefrences and the OP may find this useful and send him in a direction.
    It was nice to read the comments on disperstion & projection... I have a 2x10 combo that I love and hadn't considered this. Would adding a 15 give you the best of both worlds (disperstion & projection)?
  16. FWIW, and since I was the first to respond...I'm not seeing how anyone was tough at all. Direct question...direct answer. :D

    Speaking to the mixed speaker sizes, I think the answer...again...is very subjective. Personally, I'm not one on mixing. In general I don't care for the sound, which just seems cluttered (for lack of a better word) and I struggle with EQ to find some kind of balance. IMO/YMMV.
  17. gweimer


    Apr 6, 2000
    Columbus, OH
    According to Phil Jones, it's 5". After hearing some of his amps, I'm inclined to think that he knows what he's talking about.
  18. RickenBoogie


    Jul 22, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    I'm gonna jump in here praising the 12" combo. I've had dozens of amps throughout my life, but the 2 that stand out both had/have 12" spkrs. One being a Mesa Walkabout Scout 12. Although I really like 15" cabs, in a combo, it defeats the purpose of portability. If however, someone is considering a combo amp as their main gigging rig, I would move up to either a 210 combo with a 15" ext spkr, or a 115 combo with a 15" ext spkr. Whole different idea there.
  19. jnewmark

    jnewmark Just wanna play the groove. Supporting Member

    Aug 31, 2006
    Stax 1966
    Third St. Cigar Records staff musician.
    Since most of my gigs now are of the small type, I have been using my Roland db700 ( 15 AND A TWEET ) almost exclusively. Close to 300 watts, it can carry a small room without PA support. I have even used it outside with pa support and I'm really digging it. It's not the lightest combo, but that what casters are for.

  20. Nah, the general rule (even used by Phil himself from what I understand) is that it takes approximately four of those little drivers to equal the output of a single 10" driver, which means around six of them to equal the output of a little 112, which now puts you into the size of a 210 cab.

    After hearing many of these cabs, that design makes very little sense to me personally. I must admit, if you get 24 or 30 of them with a couple thousand watts, that's a different story... and also a couple hundred pounds!:p

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