Sad cab day - possible dying speaker in Mesa PH410?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by trjh2k2, Sep 16, 2021.


  1. trjh2k2

    trjh2k2

    Jul 19, 2009
    Gatineau, QC
    Maaaan I haven't posted here in a long time - but I recently have been on sort of a bass kick lately, and I ended up picking up a new (to me) cab, since I found a good deal on a used powerhouse 4x10. I haven't had a chance to get it up to jam-level volumes, but it's been sitting in my living room and I've been playing through it at home-friendly (mostly) levels.

    The tl;dr version is that one of the speakers (top left) is making a kind of papery/crunchy sound (it sounds more like electrical noise than distortion to me), but only when playing an open low B, and only with a good amount of volume to it.

    It's kind of a subtle noise though. I'm not sure if it's been there the whole time and I didn't notice, or if it's developed since I brought it home, or what. I've not had the chance to turn the cab up louder either, to jam volume, to see if the sound goes away when played at proper volumes. I cranked it a bit the day I bought it and I don't remember hearing anything funny at the time - but I can't get away with that same volume test at home. I'm reasonably sure it's the speaker and not something else vibrating, just because it's only the one speaker doing it.

    Things I have tried so far:
    - Different bass (it's not the bass)
    - Different amp (it's not the amp)
    - Different speaker cable (cables are fine)
    - Took the grill off (the grill is not vibrating)
    - Took the handles off the side, put it back on tight (the handles are not it)
    - Lightly dusted the speakers off to remove any particulate that might be vibrating on it (made no difference)
    - Tried to look at the speaker from the back, but couldn't see anything out of place
    - Tried to remove the speaker for a better look, but it's sealed real well into the cab and I couldn't get it out.
    - The panel/board at the back also looks clean/normal as far as I can tell. Nothing inside is rusted or anything in terms of wiring.

    Anyone else have some troubleshooting suggestions? Maybe the speaker is just on its way out? I've heard of stories of stuff getting stuck in/around the magnet making noises? Is there an easy/safe way to remove the speaker from the cab?

    If I find some time, I'll see if I can get a recording with the noise in it, since that might illustrate better than my bad description.
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2021
  2. squish

    squish

    Dec 6, 2005
    Atl
    Try lightly pressing on the back of the paper cone to see if creases form on the face. That is one way to see damage if it went through an over excursion event. But it is not the only damage a speaker can have. If the speaker is indeed damaged, it shouldn't be too hard to get it reconed.
     
  3. trjh2k2

    trjh2k2

    Jul 19, 2009
    Gatineau, QC
    Someone else had recommended also examining the dust cap in case that's come unglued a bit. Between those two things and maybe re-checking the wiring just in case something is loose, I've got a few things to try and can report back. Still open to more suggestions for things to try in the mean time.
     
  4. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG
    Things I would check first…

    Are the speaker screws snug but not over tightened?

    Is there any loose padding in the cab flapping?

    Are you playing way too loud? ;)

    Since it’s happening on only one note, the speaker is probably ok.
     
  5. trjh2k2

    trjh2k2

    Jul 19, 2009
    Gatineau, QC
    I don't think the screws are the culprit - I undid them, and put them back by hand at what I would think is a reasonable tightness without wrenching the bajeezus out of them.

    The padding looks to be pretty secure - there's staples everywhere - which made me think maybe a staple got loose and stuck to the speaker? But I couldn't find one. Seeeeeeems to be in order.

    Volume-wise, I'm not playing loud at all - loud enough that I'd get complaints if I was in an apartment building, but that's not saying much. It's quiet enough that you could easily talk over it.

    True that it's one note, but it's also the lowest note available, so I would wonder if that's just a coincidence that it takes that much energy before anything funky happens.

    Edit: I went and checked just now, and if I touch the cone a bit, it makes a scratchy noise as it moves, which the other speakers don't do. I think I've heard this called "coil rub"? I guess this is a replacement or find a speaker repair guy kind of scenario.

    I wonder if it's worth contacting the guy I got it from.
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2021
    BasturdBlaster likes this.
  6. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG
    Oh dang…. Usually it’s happening on every note when you have a shot coil. But yes, it’s shot.
     
    jjk2007 likes this.
  7. trjh2k2

    trjh2k2

    Jul 19, 2009
    Gatineau, QC
    I feel like my takeaway is to avoid buying used bass cabs. This is the second time I get a cab to find out it's dead after I get it home. The scratchy noise isn't toooo bad in this one, I dunno if this is repairable maybe, but still. Huge disappointment.
     
  8. squish

    squish

    Dec 6, 2005
    Atl
    You said that you found a "good deal" on a Mesa Powerhouse cab. If you must have a speaker reconed, that really should only be a minor setback. Bass cab speakers are not bulletproof, but if the seller said that it was in perfect condition, negative feedback is an option if they misrepresented the cab and are not willing to work with you.
     
  9. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa Boogie, Development Engineer-Genzler (pedals), Product Support-Genz Benz
    If you need a replacement driver, the 6 digit part number stamped on the driver will help our customer service folks get you the right (or closest available) part.
     
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  10. trjh2k2

    trjh2k2

    Jul 19, 2009
    Gatineau, QC
    "Good deal" in this case was $500 Canadian. It's in that "kinda pushing it for an impulse buy" territory, which makes it kinda sting to have to spend more to make it reliable when I didn't really neeeeeeed another cab. I'm on the fence about contacting the seller, since it's been weeks, and I don't know exactly what I'd be asking of him.

    I'm basically in that "I feel like a moron" stage where I spent a chunk of money I didn't need to, to buy something that will need more investment to get back in working condition, at a time where shows and things aren't happening in the first place anyway.

    I guess I'll grab that number on the speaker and start looking around for repair places or something.
     
    S-Bigbottom and BasturdBlaster like this.
  11. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa Boogie, Development Engineer-Genzler (pedals), Product Support-Genz Benz
    Call customer service with the number, they will get you the proper info.
     
    bignc, BasturdBlaster and trjh2k2 like this.
  12. squish

    squish

    Dec 6, 2005
    Atl
    I see where you are coming from. It does sting especially since it wasn't a necessary expense. I agree that it probably has been too long to reach out to the seller. I was thinking that the bum driver was discovered soon after you got it. Stay motivated! That thing should rock pretty hard, once sorted.
     
    Al Kraft, BasturdBlaster and trjh2k2 like this.
  13. Al Kraft

    Al Kraft Supporting Member

    May 2, 2016
    Northern Virginia
    I'll second this. With the new speaker you'll have a dynamite cab. While it is a little heavier and a bit larger then the newest stuff, you'd still have to spend about twice what you'll have invested to get something new that sounds that good. The PH410 is top quality piece of professional gear.
     
  14. trjh2k2

    trjh2k2

    Jul 19, 2009
    Gatineau, QC
    Thanks for the suggestions and comments. It's been a busy week, so the lingering cab problem has just been a frustration in the back of my mind the whole time. Should have some time soon to properly give CS a call and get things sorted.

    And realistically, it's true that the sound isn't thaaaaat bad (it takes a good amount of volume to get it to make the sound - maybe more than I should be giving it in an apartment right now), and having no shows or anything going on means there's no urgency. I do otherwise like the sound I've been getting out of it.
     
  15. trjh2k2

    trjh2k2

    Jul 19, 2009
    Gatineau, QC
    If it's of any interest to anyone - I thiiiiiiink the model number for the speaker is 1046, and some quick googling suggests this is an older/discontinued version of the speaker.
     
  16. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa Boogie, Development Engineer-Genzler (pedals), Product Support-Genz Benz
    1046 isn't the correct number, there is a 6 digit number that I can use to cross it to what replaced it and if the new part is still available.
     
  17. trjh2k2

    trjh2k2

    Jul 19, 2009
    Gatineau, QC
    I'm not seeing a clear 6 digit number. There's a barcode with two numbers on it - 1046 is the same on all 4 speakers, then what I guess is a serial number that's unique to each one between the *s.

    upload_2021-9-21_9-10-4.png

    There's sooooooomething stamped on the back of each one but it's hard to make it out:
    upload_2021-9-21_9-13-24.png

    The googling I did the other day came up with a lot of "761046", which makes me want to say that's what this says.... but I can't really read it. It definitely says xx1046, but I can't make out the first two digits. I looked at the other ones, but they're all this blurry.
     
  18. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa Boogie, Development Engineer-Genzler (pedals), Product Support-Genz Benz
    Ok, that’s a #761046 which we no longer stock, but is very close to the Eminence Legend CA-10. If your cabinet is 8 ohm, than the driver is 8 ohms (wired series-parallel). You may be able to find a pro recone shop that can recone this driver as well.

    if your cabinet is 4 ohms, I need to do more research.
     
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  19. trjh2k2

    trjh2k2

    Jul 19, 2009
    Gatineau, QC
    This one's labelled 8ohms. Does "very close" mean "close enough" in this instance? As in - would it end up being a problem replacing just one of the drivers with something that isn't an exact match, or do they all need to be the same? From what I understand, the speaker is supposed to match the parameters of the cab, and I'm sure there's some interaction between the drivers - I'm unsure if having one mis-matched speaker would shorten the life of the other speakers or something. Might be a dumb question, since it soooounds safe to me, but you never know.

    Edit - also, thanks for looking that up.
     
  20. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa Boogie, Development Engineer-Genzler (pedals), Product Support-Genz Benz
    Yes, plenty close enough in all meaningful parameters.
     
    pcake and trjh2k2 like this.
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