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ISO Unicorn Cab - Built for Bass, Handles Guitar

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Jangletown, Nov 30, 2020.


  1. Traynor

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  2. Eden

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  3. Bugera

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  4. Audiokinesis

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  5. None of the above - submit alternative as a reply

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  1. Hi, I have an Ashdown Little Bastard 30 watt (tube) bass head. I'm looking for a cab that will produce deep clean lows for bass (primary use) and double as a secondary guitar rig. I have a Rickenbacker guitar w/stereo outputs. One output is fed into a Vox ac15 w/two Celestion Greenback 12" speakers. They provide the jingle/jangle high end and so I wouldn't need as much in the bass rig setup but the more versatile the better!

    The Freq Response of the Traynors is impressive 45Hz - 18kHz! The Edens But does it sound pleasant with guitar?

    Some options I've been considering:
    -Traynor TC210 (45Hz - 18KHz)
    -Eden D210 XST | XLT (30Hz - 14KHz | 48Hz - 14KHz, respectively)
    -Bugera 210 (Can't find specs on Turbosound Speakers)
    -Audiokinesis Hathor 1203 (62Hz - 12KHz, I think but not sure)

    Any advice on tone and translation to electric guitar would be greatly appreciated.

    Also is there any dogma on tweeters - e.g., no tweeters if used for guitar or having them is a definite bonus?

    Thanks TB Community!
     
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2020
  2. I'm not sure about the others, but I can tell you that the TC210 is decidedly voiced for bass and would not be suitable for guitar. It's very warm with pronounced low mids that makes for a nice bass cab.
     
  3. Redbrangus

    Redbrangus Supporting Member

    Nov 19, 2018
    Under The X In Texas
    Random thoughts from the cheap seats:

    I'd advise a healthy dose of skepticism when comparing the advertised frequency response claims of various manufacturers. Especially if there isn't any qualifying data, like -3dB and -10dB points, or the operating level of the so-called "measurement". There are enough variables and 'specs-manship' involved that there is practically no validity in comparing published frequency response between different manufacturers, IMO.

    If you really are shopping HF response numbers, you're automatically in tweeter or horn/driver world -- that's the only way to get good HF response numbers -- but most guitar players recoil in horror from a box with a HF component in it. And some of us question the value of them in bass cabs.

    Plus, what you're asking for seems kinda at competing goals -- you want something that has good LF response, in part because you already have something that gives you the high-end response you want for your bass rig; and you want this additional "bass cab" to also be a good guitar cab. Seems a bit like mutually exclusive concepts to me.

    Maybe it would be more advantageous to shop for a box dedicated to JUST enhancing the LF response and a guitar cab optimized for that purpose that could also serve as the top box for your 2-way bass rig.

    And I positively guarantee you these opinions are worth every penny you've paid for them. :D
     
  4. I had my doubts (hence the 'unicorn' prefix in front of cab) but they do exist, unlike the unicorns. The Fender Bassman, for example, did the job quite well. I think they had Jensen's (?) and I've heard good things about the EVM12Ls.

    I'm currently looking at getting a custom 212 cab built with Eminence Delta Pro 12s w/o a tweeter. These look great for bass and promising as a clean/low end guitar. If anyone has experience with these speakers for either application (bass or guitar) comments would be appreciated.

    And thanks for the opinion Rebrangus! The only way to know for sure is to sit and play through the options you're considering. Of course I know this, but living in rural Wyoming makes testing gear quite a bit more challenging so I figured it couldn't hurt to start here.
     
    Redbrangus likes this.
  5. TransylvaniaE

    TransylvaniaE Inactive

    Dec 1, 2020
    Eminence makes a speaker called the Beta12a2
    Not only does it work well in smaller 12" floor monitor type cabinets. It works well in med to large 12" cabinets as well.

    Far as bass use
    it performs very well

    Works well with vocals and keyboard amps

    Pretty much a affordable unicorn speaker.

    I've used it in smaller 4x12 Ampeg V4B cabinets. Bass and guitar
    Monitor Floor wedges
    And used it in a powered 4x12 cabinet for a Fender Rhodes piano keyboard amp.

    Alot of typical guitar speakers don't have much bass, and that classic ear piercing squawk around 2000 hz.
    And if you put them in sealed cabs they get boomy.

    Using a beta 12a2.
    This doesn't happen.
    No squawking piercing highs and no booming in smaller sealed cabinets

    Good mids, decent highs
    And as a 2x12 does good with bass.
    As a 4x12 my V4B cabinets
    We're louder and deeper than my SVT410HE
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2020
    Jangletown likes this.
  6. I've got a 2x12 cab with those very same drivers. Using it for both guitar and bass was also a design consideration for me. It's primarily a bass cab for my purposes, but also works fine with my Bassman and Strat.
    Here's a pre grill cloth pic (https://photos.app.goo.gl/usrP5aXSJyBraV6x5)
     
    Jangletown likes this.
  7. Lammchop93

    Lammchop93 Supporting Member

    Feb 4, 2007
    Louisville, KY
    Peavey made some combo amps that works for bass and guitar. I just can’t think what the name was...
     
  8. inthevelvet

    inthevelvet Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2012
    Washington DC
    One thing I've found out that a tweeter is fine for clean sounds, but turn up the gain and it's really terrible. So if you get a tweeter make sure it can be turned off, unless your guitar playing is clean only.
     
    Jangletown likes this.
  9. Those fEarless cabs are built more like PA cabs with a woofer, mid range, and adjustable tweeter. When a guitarist plays a large gig, their amp is mic’d and run through PA speakers.

    I think those types of cabs would work well for guitar - but you may need to adjust the amp’s eq to compensate for running a full range cabinet instead of a mid-heavy guitar cab.
     
  10. mordechai

    mordechai

    Dec 8, 2007
    Blaine, WA
    If I had a RIC guitar with one output going to an AC-15 and wanted to send the other output to a bass rig, I’d probably want something to send it to something kind of vintagey or whatever. Like an Ampeg V4 or something. I have some fond memories of hearing my guitars through big old Acoustic 2x15s and stuff like that. The times I’ve played guitars through more modern bass cabs is a much different experience, good for like a clean jazz tone or something like that. If what you’re after is just some low end reinforcement then I wouldn’t over think it, because I think any of them will do that job. Sounds fun.
     
  11. mordechai

    mordechai

    Dec 8, 2007
    Blaine, WA
    So I’ll cast a vote for a fearful/greenboy bassic series cab.
     
  12. That's really encouraging to hear. Do you happen to have a link to any samples? Would love to hear these through played with guitar and for bass.

    Definitely, versatility is key with this kind of a setup!

    Thanks for the feedback! Yeah, low end reinforcement and more tonal control. E.g., if playing a heavier overdrive/fuzz/grungy style I'd likely opt for the bass setup. If going for melodic hooks (Beatles, Tom Petty, etc) then the Vox has me covered. I basically sit somewhere between 90s alt rock/punk and 60s-70s rock as it is, which is why I get really excited about using the stereo pickup output with a bass setup. Good to know there are probably more options than I'm expecting. Been talking to a few cabinet makers about combinations. One fella suggested a 210 (or a 212) with the Celestion BN10-200s neodymiums. Another fella said drop the 212 idea and get two separate 1x12 cabs - one for bass and one for guitar.
     
  13. I don't have any recorded samples unfortunately. Compared to typical guitar speakers, you won't get much breakup from the speaker itself but it'll faithfully reproduce anything you feed into it. They have a decent "presence" spike at 2.5K that lends itself well to guitar. Their use for guitar appears to be pretty well documented based on a quick Google search.
    With regards to bass, comparing to commercial cabs I've owned, I had GK NEO212 and NEO410 cabinets. This cab sits between them in terms of low end response. I found the NEO410 far too boomy in the low-end and found the NEO212 too thin at the bottom. My DIY cab has lots of low-mid punch with more than enough bottom.
     
  14. mordechai

    mordechai

    Dec 8, 2007
    Blaine, WA
    Just occurred to me that Quilter might make some products of appeal to you. Amps that pedal steel players use kind of bridge the gap between guitar amps and bass amps. Those instruments play some pretty low frequencies, and the players tend to favor clean classic guitar tones.
     
    Jangletown likes this.
  15. TransylvaniaE

    TransylvaniaE Inactive

    Dec 1, 2020
    Similar to the King of pedal steel speakers the 15" JBL D - 130. More high-end than you can imagine and could handle the deep bass as well.

    Fender Showman and Dual Showman the classic Pedal Steel Amplifiers. Using of course the best of the best speakers of the time. Either a 1x15 or 2x15 loaded with the
    JBL D-130

    Eminence recent attempts at recreating the sound with the a special design speaker. Can't touch the JBL classic.

    Believe it or not a similar appearance and sound was the Peavey Black Widow. And Peavey is another King of Pedal Steel. Not only the special design 15" black widows but countless amplifiers designed specific for lap steel. The 15" Black Widow 1501DT is the King of lap steel speakers. Same aluminum dust cap like the JBL and a cast frame also remarkably close to the JBL

    Don't forget the Dual Showman Reverb head
    And Dual 15" cabinets. 4x15 JBLs and essentially the head version of the Fender Twin.

    The Dumble steel string singer. Essentially a waste of money. The " Magic" tonestack is a 70s silverface bassman tonestack. Glued into a Blonde Fender Showman Copy.
     
  16. Great suggestion, haven't thought of that and certainly worth investigating.

    The black widow came up in my research too for the same reason. I think the pedal steel approach has a lot of potential. Generally for my purposes (home playing/recording) most bass speakers will do an adequate job with the vox clarity in high frequencies. Still I'm curious about the unicorn. I'm waiting on some sound samples from a builder who was going to try a few different combinations with bass and 12 string guitars. I've got patience for the right purchase.
     
  17. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

     
    Mar 4, 2021

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