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Pairing a 1x10 with a 1x12

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Yogi Bear, Sep 13, 2019 at 9:56 AM.

  1. Yogi Bear

    Yogi Bear

    Aug 14, 2000
    I posed this question in the Genzler thread, but would appreciate any other thoughts on this pairing.

    I am interested to hear if anyone has, or currently is, running a 1x10 with a 1x12. For my needs - something small and modular - it seems like it would be a good match. I've run (2) 1x12 cabs before, but something about this particular selection interests me.
    DJ Bebop likes this.
  2. Lobster11

    Lobster11 Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Apr 22, 2006
    Williamsburg, VA
    I can't think of a single good reason why this would be a better choice than a pair of matching 1x12s, but I can think of several good reasons why it's a worse choice.
    dbsfgyd1, Stevorebob, smogg and 4 others like this.
  3. jlepre

    jlepre Supporting Member

    Nov 12, 2007
    Cedar Knolls, NJ
    Can I ask why you are interested in this pairing?
  4. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    you just don't know unless you try it to see/hear/experience advantages and disadvantages for yourself. all of the naysayers (there will be naysayers! :D ) haven't tried the combination you're thinking about, in your context, yada yada. so they cannot possibly know how it will sound to you. (make sure your cab combinations are figuring impedances and phase correctly.)

    lots of folks here are pairing two cabs (different size cab, different size driver) successfully --- as would be expected with competent cabs. they just don't brag about the results on TB because of the herd-bias-protocols. IME: you'd have to be pretty unlucky to pair a 12"/cab with a 10"/cab and not get something useful.

    if you try it: you'll be obligated to get back to us for a review! you could change the herd-view/herd-speak forever! (or not!) good luck! :thumbsup:

    FWIW: i have access to many different cabs with all of the expected driver sizes scattered among the cabs (PA). i have never paired a disparate combination of cabs with results which i didn't expect or that was not useful = any two cabs worked fine together: some combinations had distinct advantages, some combinations had a few disadvantages (e.g., size of stack/weight) --- but all combinations were able to deliver an expected, useful outcome (usually i wanted more volume with more lows, but some combinations got me great midbass, or great mids, etc.).

    edit: bi-amping = de rigueur for many cabinet mixings/combinations.
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2019 at 8:41 PM
    DJ Bebop, dBChad, Winoman and 4 others like this.
  5. Yogi Bear

    Yogi Bear

    Aug 14, 2000
    I like the immediacy and punch that 10s provide, but also like the fuller sound of a 12, or 15. For the majority of what I do the single 12 works fine, but for anything larger I like the idea of adding a 10.

    I've read all the hubbub about mismatched cabs, but know it's been done before with great success in a single cab solution, ala the HT322. But I would be looking for something easier to schlep should the need to move the entire rig be needed.
    JRA likes this.
  6. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    With all the different speaker models available, and cab designs, there is no inherent sound of a size of speaker. I own two 1x10 cabs that couldn't sound more different. One is voiced like a sub, has no top end, the other is voiced with a huge upper mid spike.

    That said, I've used a 1x10 and 1x12 together before and they sounded good because they were chosen to compliment each other. Pairing random ones will give you random results.
  7. JimChjones


    Aug 6, 2017
    SE England
    I think its fairly obvious that two speaker cabinets with different characteristics may either complement or fight with each other, whether they be two tens, ten and twelve, six and fifteen, or for that matter woofer and tweeter.

    The thing that I wonder about is that the characteristics of typical bass 10s, 12s and 15s do overlap a lot. Is it possible that, by the time you're in a mix with the rest of the band, the difference between even a really well matched 10 & 12 combination and a pair of 12s will be inaudible.
  8. Lobster11

    Lobster11 Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Apr 22, 2006
    Williamsburg, VA
    Exactly. It simply is not true that 10s are "punchier" and 12s or 15s are "fuller" sounding. It just isn't. There is no inherent advantage in combining a 10 with a 12, but there is a chance that they will not sound good together. You can't go wrong by adding a second 1x12 to match the one you have, but you might go wrong by adding something different.
    Coolhandjjl and lz4005 like this.
  9. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    Most of what people obsess about in terms of tone is inaudible to the audience in a mix on a gig.

    True, if it's the same 1x12. Pairing two different 1x12's with different designs could still sound bad.
  10. Lobster11

    Lobster11 Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Apr 22, 2006
    Williamsburg, VA
    Right. That's what I meant by "...to match the one you have," but I could have been clearer.
    DJ Bebop likes this.
  11. guitarflinger

    guitarflinger Not all who wander are lost Supporting Member

    Oct 19, 2013
    Front Range, Colorado
    Dipping my toe in the water here.

    I certainly agree that you would have to hear the result of the 2 combined cabs to see if you like it. However, it seems that most arguments against mixing cabs relate to differing numbers of speakers in the cabs (i.e. 410 vs 115, etc). With 2 cabs of the same impedence and an appropriate amp, both speakers should get equal power (unlike the 115 getting 4 times the power of each of the 10s in a 410).

    Therefore you are unlikely to damage either speaker (assuming you don't play stupid loud), and it really is just a decision based on how it sounds, which is totally dependent on the design and quality of the 2 cabs.

    If you own them both, might as well go for it. If you only own 1, try to audition the 2 together before you decide.
  12. Yogi Bear

    Yogi Bear

    Aug 14, 2000
    While there are certainly some exceptions, this simply can't be stated as fact. I accept that in some situations this has held true. However, having tried and owned cabs from various builders, there has been a punch, or immediacy, to some 10s that a 12 or 15 didn't have. I understand there is more that goes into the sound a cab produces, from the speaker used, baffling, construction, etc. But, to make a blanket statement that this isn't true... just isn't true. If that were the case why would manufacturers offer more than one speaker size..?
    DJ Bebop likes this.
  13. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    Your convoluted logic about what "true" means aside...there are many considerations for manufacturing cabs with different speaker seizes. Weight, volume, and ease of transport being only a few of them.
    Haroldo and DJ Bebop like this.
  14. rufus.K


    Oct 18, 2015
    As long as theyre both the same color, theyre considered matched.
    never mix rat-fur with tolex, or round metal grill with cloth grill, and you'll be fine.
    If theyre out of phase, turn one around to face the wall.
  15. Eminor3rd

    Eminor3rd BLAAAAARRGGHH!!

    Feb 10, 2008
    The biggest issue you will run into with this setup is an uneven amount of signal/volume from each speaker. A matched pair of cabs will not have this issue.

    Don't fall into the trap of assuming that speaker cone sizes have universal characteristics. There are punchy 18s and muddy 10s -- it just depends how each is designed. Especially in the case of single speaker cabs, they are all designed to be functional as full-range standalones.

    I would highly recommend matching sizes and impedances when building this out.
  16. Eminor3rd

    Eminor3rd BLAAAAARRGGHH!!

    Feb 10, 2008
  17. Lobster11

    Lobster11 Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Apr 22, 2006
    Williamsburg, VA
    You've made my point for me: There are some cabinets with 10s that sound punchier than some cabinets with 12s. My point was simply that it isn't true that 10s in general are any more or less "punchy" than 12s in general; it depends on the particular cabinets and speakers.

    Apart from that, consider this: Suppose you pair a cab that has more "immediacy" (which I take to mean "quicker response") with one that lags behind -- irrespective of whether they are 10s or 12s or 15s. That sounds to me like a recipe for mud. Again, two matching cabinets will always sound good together, but two non-matching cabs might or might not.
  18. GDUBS


    Mar 2, 2013
    Madison, VA
    I thought the same years ago. Insisted I knew better. Guess what... I learned I don't.
    Listen to the wise here!
  19. Coolhandjjl

    Coolhandjjl Supporting Member

    Oct 13, 2010
    Buy what you wish, but if the venue has a PA, that’s what the crowd hears.
    DJ Bebop likes this.
  20. Also an important consideration! I'm not sure I ever remember a time where my amp actually carried bass sound for a venue. Amps are just stage monitors most of the time.
    DJ Bebop and Coolhandjjl like this.

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