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Is there ever a situation which 10" speakers just aren't good enough?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by AngusHasMoxie, Mar 25, 2013.

  1. AngusHasMoxie

    AngusHasMoxie Supporting Member

    Mar 11, 2013
    Easthampton, MA
    Formerly endorsed by Carvin, Basson and Dimarzio
    I've always owned 10" cabs, I'm not entirely sure why but I've always been turned off by larger speakers. I've also always felt like I've lacked that real "Heart shaking" bass and any real low end. Are the two related? I've played with the convential fridges, although my most used setup was an Avatar B410 neo and a carvin BRX2.10 powered by a Carvin BX1200. J bass with American J electronics. Picked and Fingered

    Basically, I'm building a rig right now and I'm starting to be a bit hesitant on buying another 10" setup if I'm gonna be having the same issues.

    TL,DR: Always had 10" speakers, can I expect more bass from a larger speaker or does size not matter as much as number+power?
  2. It all depends on cab tuning. Most larger speakers have more mid content which can make the bass seem "louder", but cabs with 10's are usually more efficient and have more true low end extension than cabs with larger diaphragm speakers (eden XST cabs and the Epifani PS410 go down to the low 30's). So, if sub frequencies are what you want, just find a cab that is tuned to reproduce it or play through a dedicated subwoofer.
  3. BruceWane


    Oct 31, 2002
    Houston, TX
    Cone size has very, very little to do with tonality.

    There are 10" cabs that go very very deep, like Acme's B series and Eden's XST series; they go deeper than practically all commercially available 15s and 18s.

    Decide what's important for you in a speaker cabinet. Is size a concern? Does it need to fit in the trunk of a Honda Civic? Does it need to be extremely loud and have a lot of "cut" 'cause you're playing with two guitarists, both using cranked Marshalls and a drummer who beats the s**t out of his drums?

    Probably most importantly - what's your budget?

    Think about your needs and wants, then do some searching here and ask some more questions.

    The catch with bass cabs is that going really deep AND going really loud requires BIG cabinets - either lots of smaller ones or a few big ones. There is no getting around that. It's physics. If you can sacrifice some low end extension, you can get very loud, hard hitting tone in a more reasonable package.
  4. low2groove

    low2groove Tyranis 4 / Lower Groove Guitars

    Jan 21, 2007
  5. AngusHasMoxie

    AngusHasMoxie Supporting Member

    Mar 11, 2013
    Easthampton, MA
    Formerly endorsed by Carvin, Basson and Dimarzio
    Nothing like a good straight answer! My budget is extremely limited currently, as I'm unemployed, and there's not a huge rush since there's no upcoming gigs and I've jury-rigged enough in the practice space to be ok for now, I'm just planning ahead for when I get a job, and then the scratch. good to know it's something I can work on rather than being stuck with false thinking.
  6. Once you've played through 12s it's hard to look back...
  7. chaosMK


    May 26, 2005
    Albuquerque, NM
    Hi-fi into an old tube amp
    I prefer 10's but like everything. For some reason I feel like 10's record a little better. I tend to blend a little mic in with the DI from my head.
  8. Old Fart

    Old Fart

    Mar 11, 2011
    I prefer fifteens. I do.
  9. ejonn


    Dec 12, 2012
    My simple answer to your posted question = Usually....
    I like old school....15's & 18's.....heavy and a pain to move around......but with the right ones, they'll drop panties at 50 yards.

    The only 10" cab Ive ever heard that have "Heart Shaking" bass by themselves would be Epifani. Not real loud....but MAN they sound good!!

    The most important part of what your after though.....you MUST have good cabinets that match your speakers!!!!

    4x10 neo's in an Avatar cab will never do what it sounds like you want.
  10. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Ampeg SVT 410hlf. If ever a cab proved that 10"s can deliver heart shaking bass, it's that one. One needs only look to the 410hlf to demonstrate that all preconceptions we ever had about cab tone based on speaker size are irrelevant.
  11. IMG-20130325-00548.
    These go WAY lower than my 115 cabs.

    But they are totally different, the 10's in this case, will shake my house. The 15's are much louder and "punch" harder, like hard enough for you to make a Mosh girl face.

    It depends on the Cab and speaker, not the size

    but 15's Rule :D
  12. If your used to the ampeg-fridge, try the 610hlf or the pr410hlf and go deeper. 12's might be my new favorite though..
  13. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
  14. Musiclogic

    Musiclogic Commercial User

    Aug 6, 2005
    Southwest Michigan
    Owner/Builder: HJC Customs USA, The Cool Lute, C G O
    As long as they are paired with an 18", 10's will work. Rarely find them to ever be what I want to hear by themselves.
  15. tabdog


    Feb 9, 2011
    Yes, 18's don't sound good alone.

    It seems obvious that lower frequencies and
    volume can be achieved with larger speaker
    cones, or lots of smaller speaker cones.

    Real low frequencies are a different animal
    than what is used by most bassest.

    When you have the cabinets and power to
    achieve the projection of those sounds, you
    can't really hear it until you get 100 feet or
    so away from the speakers.

    It's not good for recording or small venues,
    but it is killer for the audience of an outdoor
    event, or a real large show. In those cases
    the house PA usually provides the power
    and cabs to do the job. Few bass rigs will
    project well outside.

    It becomes a case of practicality.

    My favorite bass teacher thought that he
    had to have an 18. He was good,

  16. dincz


    Sep 25, 2010
    Czech Republic
    The usual mix of wisdom and unsubstantiated hearsay. Take your pick.
  17. dincz


    Sep 25, 2010
    Czech Republic
    Aha, so that's why I can't hear anything below 5KHz through headphones!
  18. slapstick13


    Feb 5, 2010
    I used 10s for a loooonng time. Always buying new heads/basses to find the perfect sound for me. Ive had Ampeg 810, 410hlf, 410e, and an SWR 410. I FINALLY ended up getting an SVt 115E to pair with my 410e. and got a chance to A/B the 15" and the 410s seperatly. I came to the realization I should have tried 15"s a LONG time ago :bassist::bassist::bassist:
    To my ears/tastes, the 15" cab is everything I like about 10s, but way more. More mids, more lows, more round sounding. Im totally sold on 15s. Maybe its jsut me but if you're not happy with your sound using 10s I highly suggest just trying 15's.
  19. Ric5

    Ric5 Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 29, 2008
    I convert 4 string Rickenbackers to 5 string basses.
    Is there ever a situation which 10" speakers just aren't good enough?


  20. There are only two cabs loaded with 10's that I would even want to play, greenboy's fEARless F110 and F210. Considering the price difference in 301xLF drivers, I will always go with 12's or 15's.

    There is not a single commercial cab based around a 10" speaker that would appeal to me.

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