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<?> Paper cones vs. Aluminum cones <?>

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by syrinxpriest, Nov 4, 2006.

  1. Whats the difference between paper cones and aluminum?
  2. MarkMyWordsXx


    May 17, 2006
    aluminum sound like ass
  3. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
    Paper cones are made of paper, aluminum cones are made of aluminum. While there are differences in the sound of different drivers, very little of that difference is due to the cone material. Paper versus aluminum makes a huge difference if you create sound by hitting the cone with a stick, but when used in the usual fashion not so much.
  4. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    Then you must have a nice sounding ass.

    I've been nothing but thrilled with the new GK aluminum coned speakers. Can't say the same for Hartke or Behringer, but that's because of design of the cabinets, not the cone material, IMO.
  5. Ste_m3


    Mar 26, 2006
    Northwest UK
    i think youd be able to tell more tonal difference between say ampeg and GK paper cones than you would with any good quality aluminium cones vs. any good quility paper cones

    (my amp knowladge is limited before you shred my example! :) )
  6. Squidfinger

    Squidfinger I wish I could sing like Rick Danko.

    Jan 7, 2004
    Shreveport LA

    I must say I am very interested in GK's new goldline series. I never thought much of aluminum cone speakers since only Hartke and Behringer made them but now with a reputable company doing it my interest is picqued (sp?).
  7. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2005
    Syracuse NY
    Endorsing artist: Dingwall Guitars
    I have to agree with Bill's assessment.

    I've played both, and while I don't really like the sound of Hartke cabs, I don't know that I think it has anything to do with the cone material. I don't feel that they're overly bright.

    I personally think its the same weird mental thing that players do with fretboard material: Dark wood = dark tone. Shiny cones = Bright tone.

    It doesn't make sense to me...density of material, and other physical traits should be more important.
  8. I like aluminum cones quite a bit and I am one of the few people on TB who is into Hartke cabs. I have a Hartke 410XL and think it's a great cab. It's super quick and punchy as hell. It's not the greatest stand alone cab, but I have always found that the one cone size / cab is not enough to give a full sound anyway. The 410XL coupled with a paper cone 15 or 18 is freakin' fantastic (I play mine with an SWR Big Ben 18).

    If you look at Hartke cabs, I find the XL cabs to be far superior to the Transporter series, for what it is worth.

    Good luck!
  9. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    i like aluminum cones a lot, but i have a wierd rig (4x12" hartke guitar cabs and yamaha 1x18" pa subs).
  10. I accually like the sound from my Kickback 12, dunno if it has a aluminum or paper cone. I pretty much love that amp, but I'm kinda wierd. The shape-dial is what makes it I think. And now I'm completly OT, but I just thought I got to stand up a bit for Hartke. :D

    I generally prefer Aluminum before Paper, since it looks more sturdy, and if the elements aren't fitted into a wall or something, they got to be sturdy.
  11. Basshole

    Basshole Inactive

    Jan 28, 2005
    I kinda like 'em. A lot.

  12. Vic Winters

    Vic Winters Supporting Member

    Apr 20, 2006
    Western NY
    Not a fan of aluminum. Behringer combo came with them. Cracked the aluminum on one of them and replaced them with paper Eminence Beta 10s. Got alot more mid range growl. The aluminum fracture was more due to using too many effects at once.

    My opinion:

    Aluminum - punch, clean
    Paper - growl, mid happy
  13. justinb515


    May 23, 2006
    Alot of people are going to tell you that aluminum cones are cheap crap, but that's because up until the recent GK goldline release, only cheaper, less refutable companies were manufacturing them. I don't know a whole lot about speakers, but its not the cone that makes the sound, its the voice coil. I seriously doubt that the cone material makes a huge difference tonally. I'm sure that GK's goldline aluminum cone speakers sound great because they are quality speakers, not because they are aluminum cone. Like someone said earlier, I think it is like fretboard wood: People naturally associate the sound with the look. If you are really interested in testing the quality of alum cones, I would definitely try comparing a standard GK cab with a GK goldline cab. That should give you a more fair comparison than comparing a GK with a Hartke or Behringer.
  14. MarkMyWordsXx


    May 17, 2006

    well thank you:smug:
  15. jazzy grille

    jazzy grille - Arrogant Bastard

    Aug 15, 2006
    Sarasota, Florida
    not really.

    As far as bass cabs go I think you are right. But, I have a show car that I enter into sound-off's around my state. It has four 15 inch Fujitsu-ten Eclipse titanium subs in a sealed enclosure. They have a aluminum cone plated with a titanium shell and these things have the sharpest sounding bass I have ever heard(1200 watts RMS a piece). I just wish that someone would make a cab that had some really good aluminum drivers instead of some cheap-o's.

    It would be really neat to see and hear especially for those of us that like really really tight lows.
  16. brandonwong


    Dec 16, 2003
  17. BassyBill

    BassyBill The smooth moderator... Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2005
    West Midlands UK
    I guess that depends quite a bit on who's playing through them. ;)
  18. bongomania

    bongomania Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    That's an easy one- smoking aluminium will give you Parkinson's disease! ;)
  19. 62bass


    Apr 3, 2005
    If you go to the Eminence website, you'll see that Eminence disagrees with you about cone material making a huge difference.

    I think you're right about quality of construction being important, and I think that manufacturing price has a lot to do with the end result. Good sounding speakers, whether aluminium cone or paper cone, cost more to design and make. The Hartke speakers are almost certainly made by Eminence and to Hartke specs and price. If someone is willing to pay a higher price for Eminence to design and build an aluminium cone speaker, then it would be done.

    I remember hearing and trying some Bullfrog aluminium cone speakers when they first came out and they sounded pretty good compared to the Hartke, but they cost a lot more.
  20. chadds


    Mar 18, 2000
    Played a gig on a hot 98% humidity evening 100 ft. from a lake where there was a sheen of moisture on our cases. My cones noticeably became slower. (The cones in my cabinets became slower too.):) Played the same gig through a supplied backline of Hartke with no such effect. They can sound really clear. Hear Stu Hamm with Satrini. They also amplify what you put in them so check your other gear also. That being said I am not a fan but when I have had to I get my sound out of them. I was able to ABC them with Mesa and SWR at different volume levels. The Mesa had a distortion at the lowest of the lows even at quiet volumes the Hartke was really smooth and the SWR won me over with smoothness and character. Goliath I and II era. Hartke 1x15 often blew up when asked to take the same wattage as the 4x10. They sold that combination with a GK head like fries with a burger. That seemed to be all that people were playing for a while. See picture up above. It's the backline at Wolftrap (the Barns) and I've heard some wicked bass tones from it by Habib Koite's bassist. He certainly sounded like himself on this gear.

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