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SWR 12 Pack: In Da House

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by MrBonex, Apr 7, 2006.

  1. MrBonex


    Jan 2, 2004
    New Hampshire
    I just received my 2 (two!!) SWR 12 Pack bins today (Fedex Ground = Perfect Condition -- thank you)!!!! Here are my initial thoughts and observations.

    Size: Not bad at all. Very compact for 2-12s. 63 lbs. They are the horizontal form factor, not the usual 45 degree gotta fit all different-sized drivers in the same 4-10-size box that everyone seems to be doing these days. So, even though SWR is discontinuing this bin, they get points for doing it differently. It reminds me of the original Epifani 2-12 which was the horizontal style, too.

    Looks: Nice tough-and-quality-looking tolex/vinyl type of cover in black. I am so tired of rat fur. Big points for SWR here, too. A pretty interesting feature is that the front of the speaker baffle has some thin black furry carpet substance covering it. Very matte look. It makes the speakers and baffle disappear behind the shiny chrome speaker grate. Cool.

    I took off a metal handle and the jackplate to check out the insides. NICE! 11-ply marine-style plywood throughout. Very clean joints. Not a lot of bracing. The shelf port is the main brace for the baffle, plus there's a triangular piece between the drivers anchored to the baffle and the shelf. The speaker wiring is very clean and the box is well-lined with white acoustic fuzzy stuff. All-in-all, it seems to be a very nicely made box.

    The drivers are sort of generic looking. Pressed steel frames, brown paint, vented pole throught the ceramic magnet. No name or identification of any kind on the driver. Hmmm. Eminence? I've no idea. Anyone know? Anyway, they are 16-ohm 200-watt speaks wired in parallel.

    Interestingly, these bins are made in Mexico. Ah, the fingerprints of Fender. But I can't complain; these are really quite tidy and well-build.

    OK. Now for the juicy stuff: Sound. As many of you know, there is no tweeter or crossover in this box. Just good old 12s. Old-style, for sure. But I really prefer that sound -- and I really don't appreciate having to pay for that stuff if I'm just going to turn the tweet off! That said, I didn't have to pay -- in fact the price on these babes was truly amazing: $320 each including shipping! Woof.

    Great low end, great mids, quick, pretty bright -- perhaps a little rise in the frequency response at about 2.5 - 3k I'd guess. I can get a reasonable snappy-poppy without the "burn" of cheap tweets. However, those looking for hi-fi need to look elsewhere. These may sound clean and clear, but they are not full-range by any means!

    They are very responsive to small changes in eq. Those of you who know the Trace V-type preamp will understand that the eq is sort of quirky. These speakers really work well with those quirks, although I've got to spend a lot more time with them to fully suss it out. I should say that I haven't broken these in or gigged with them yet, so I'll have to do a follow-up. And I've only tried 'em with my Trace V300H, not my V6, so I've got more listening to do (gimme a break, I just got 'em today!).

    The big story is PUNCH. Damn. Four 12s is FUN!! Oh yes. PUNCH is what these got. Did I say PUNCH? :D :D :D :D :D
  2. pickles

    pickles Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2000
    Ventura, CA
    Now the big question for budget rig builders .... S410 or 12-pack for the same money?!
  3. MrBonex


    Jan 2, 2004
    New Hampshire
    I assume you are referring to the Aggie S410?

    While a good price ($380 at MF), it doesn't include shipping (83 lbs.), it's made of MDF not 11 ply birch, rat fur not tolex, not tuned as low (42 hz. vs. 37), less efficient (101 db vs. 103 db.) but handles more power (500 watts vs. 400 watts). And the tweeter of course!

    SWR positioned the 12 Pack at the TOP of their pro range and Aguilar place the S410 at the bottom of their products. And while that comparison is not quite fair, I think it reflects some realities but not all. Aggie is viewed as ALL pro and SWR is more full-range low to high.

    So it's not really what I'd consider a toss-up, but others certainly will differ. I think either way, they look like great deals!
  4. pickles

    pickles Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2000
    Ventura, CA
    Ah, yes, I know about the paper comparisons ... but I have an S410, and it kills!

    I'm still debating getting a 12-pack. I thought its freq specs were 56Hz-5kHz (-3db). Where did you get the 37hz figure?
  5. MrBonex


    Jan 2, 2004
    New Hampshire
    It seems you are correct on the low freq figure. I must have not had my coffee or forgot my meds. I'm sure it's wishful thinking on my part! Not that it matters to me much -- I play four string.

    I've never been a numbers guy. :meh:

    You win!:D
  6. Eric Cioe

    Eric Cioe

    Jun 4, 2001
    Missoula, MT
    Great review!

    Even when this cab came out, I thought I'd like it. Maybe I'll have to catch a used one sometime.
  7. I'm waiting on my 12 pack to arrive any day now. That and a GK700RB-II head.
  8. I don't think it matters, theses cabs pound out some serious lows. I've tried the 2x12 and 4x12, together it was one amazing rig.
  9. MrBonex


    Jan 2, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Here's a shot of the rig.
  10. jerry

    jerry Too old for a hiptrip Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 13, 1999
    Seems like these cabs would be cool with certain effects like distortions and filters.
  11. emjazz

    emjazz Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2003
    Brooklyn, NY
    Mother of all that is good and holy....that is one serious looking rig. I just tryed these at the Danvers GC and I was very, very impressed. I'm thinking of getting one of these because the price is so good and they sound incredible.

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