NCD : A Surprising GC Find

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Vince Klortho, Dec 19, 2013.

  1. Periodically, I check out the used amps sections at Guitar Center's website and occasionally I find some very interesting things. This happened to me the other day. The picture displayed with the cabinet was a blurry mess and I could hardly see anything but I was able to make out the little orange square and aluminum dust covers that indicate JBL speakers. It turns out, the GC in Concord, CA had a used Crate BE-215L speaker cabinet. When I saw the price listed my jaw almost hit the floor :

    $150. [​IMG]

    I had wanted to have another cabinet with JBL drivers for a long time and this looked like a great opportunity. I live many miles away from Concord so I figured it would be cheaper to have it shipped than it would be to drive there and back. Since they have a thirty day return policy I figured, what the heck? so I ordered it up.

    When it arrived I extracted it from its packing box and had a look. It wasn't in too bad a shape but it had obviously seen better days. Then, to satisfy my curiousity, I took off the front grill and removed a speaker to see what kind they are. It turns out they are M151-8. This was one I had never heard of so I was a bit disappointed. I did a little reading on-line and found that all was not lost. I put the speaker back in and the grill back on and plugged my amp into it to see what it sounds like. I would summarize my thoughts by stating I am reasonably pleased with this cabinet. While it's not exactly what I was hoping for, It sounds really good and I like it a lot. I was hoping for a couple of E or K series 140s but these speakers aren't too shabby at all. I think this was a very good deal. I need to try it at a rehearsal with my band to find out how it really sounds. This band rehearses louder than any other band I have been in played live so this will be a very good test.

    I attached a shot of the cabinet. I like the look of those aluminum dust covers. I also attached a shot with some entries from JBL's document of Thiele-Small parameters so you can see how the M151-8 compares with some of JBL's other 15-inch woofers. I think they compare favorably. The primary differences between the M151-8 and the E and K series speakers was the M series had aluminum voice coils and they handled a bit more power while being lighter.

    The good thing is I still have three more weeks to make sure I like it enough to keep it.

    Attached Files:

  2. shaginwagin


    Apr 2, 2012
    Cool cab. Been thinking of picking up a 215 cab also. Gambling is fun, huh?
  3. CrackBass


    Aug 10, 2004
    Crate used to put EV's in some of their bass cabs way back in the day.
  4. christw

    christw Get low!

    May 11, 2008
    Dayton OH
    I want to be Tesla (tinkerer at Dayton Amp Co)
  5. Looks like is was a pretty decent find really :).
  6. bobcruz


    Mar 10, 2004
    Alameda, CA
    +1. Those may not have been the speakers the OP was hoping for but JBL doesn't make any junk (that I've encountered).
  7. will33


    May 22, 2006
    I'm not seeing much not to like there. The low-ish Q is common to all those drivers and is part of their tone (tight, controlled bass, not indestinct, woofy boom). The xmax is good even by todays standards and the lower moving mass (MMS) says it should have good treble response for a 15 too. They just happen to be living in a Crate box, that's all. I'd be happy stumbling into that for twice the price. ;)
  8. BassCliff


    May 17, 2012
    So. Cal.

    I've been looking for a cheap 2x15 cab to use with my old '74 Fender Bassman 100. I'd say you did very well. You can always toss in another pair of speakers in that cab when you need a change. Cool beans.

    Thank you for your indulgence,

  9. georgestrings

    georgestrings Banned

    Nov 5, 2005
    Yeah, I think ya done good, OP - congrats... I've long been a fan of 215s - they just flat out work...

    - georgestrings
  10. basscooker

    basscooker Commercial User

    Apr 11, 2010
    cincy ky
    There are almost always good finds there. I could have this a bit wrong, but I thought one salesman told me that when used gear is in the inventory for 90 days, their computer system automatically knocks off a percentage of the price for the online listing. He also said that there's no predetermined percentage, it just randomly chooses between 10-60%. I always search the "price drop" listings first, and price sort. I've seen stuff on there for under $100 that would sell on craigslist for $200 easy. Sure, there's tax and shipping, but you really can find some steals there. I've seen (and promptly posted here) Genz or Ampeg gear for half of what I'd be willing to pay were I looking for gear. GK stuff is almost always a steal. Just a few weeks ago I almost pulled the trigger on a Peavey Vtb300 (or something like that) for 189, a bit over 200 after tax and shipping for a 200 watt all tube bass amp, likely handwired by the man himself. May still be there, dunno, the GAS wore off.
  11. No worries on M151-8.
    I found two NOS, sold off one for a repair, still have the other one NIB.
    The repair went into a TNT combo, and it did very well in that box.

    These are follow-on after E-series was discontinued.
    They are used extensively in the JBL monitors and other boxes, and are not dogs.

    M151-8 uses edge-wound aluminum coils, similar to the E130.
    Note the Inductance (Le) is much lower than the E and K series bass drivers using copper coils.
    This gives them a tighter transient response and higher inductance-limited frequency response.

    Like all JBL, these are high efficiency i.e. SPL 102 published, SPL 100 calculated.
    They also have the corresponding JBL roll-off, and lack of bass extension.
    You can expect an F3 around 90 Hz in Flat, somewhat lower if you go with the JBL-recommended EBS.
  12. jeff7bass


    Apr 9, 2009
    I feel bad for the guy who traded it in, probably got 75 bucks for it! Sucka!!
  13. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa, Product Support-Genz Benz
    When using the M series with older JBL drivers, double check polarity between them. The older jbl's are opposite of today's standard. Legacy drivers maintained this long after the rest of the product line changed.
  14. Yep, this is 100% true. Even some of the "newer" ones like the 2226 are opposite.
  15. That was my conclusion after a bit of reading - there's nothing to worry about since it is a worthy speaker.

    That roll-off is actually my biggest concern. In my initial listening I don't hear an issue. I think the roll-off with this cabinet is below 80Hz since the low E still sounds good and about the same as higher notes.

    I just need to hear it at a rehearsal with the band to find out how it does at high volume. The fact is I don't really need this cabinet but I like it a lot and I think it is a cool option to have available.
  16. I was looking a GC's used stuff again today and they have a used Crate BE15L cabinet listed. That is a 1x15 version of the cabinet I have.

    Just thought someone might be interested. :)
  17. vickde


    Jul 23, 2005
    Orlando, FL
    I just looked at the BE15L. They want $99 for it. Unfortunately, tax and ship add another $54. I'm gonna pass.
  18. GM60466


    May 20, 2006
    Land of Lakland
    Great Deal!