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what is the most efficient 4ohm super 12 cab ?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by pfschim, Jan 4, 2012.


  1. pfschim

    pfschim Just a Skeleton with a Jazz bass Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2006
    SF Bay Area
    been reading the posts having to do with the current crop of so called "super 12" cabs (Acme, Barefaced, fEarful, Baer, Thunderchild...etc.) and was wondering if anyone more familiar with the specs of these cabs can tell me which one provides the best SPL/efficiency in a 4ohm model.

    The reason I ask is that I am looking into adding a 1x12 extension to my beloved Walkabout 12 combo (2nd gen 4ohm silver/black version). I have no problem running it at 2ohms and would rather not mix/match cabs with different resistances with the resulting power draw mismatch.

    I originally imagined that I would just get a Mesa Scout 12 to go underneath the WA, for tonal and aesthetic consistency, but all this talk of super 12's has peaked my curiosity. Also, is there any fairly easy way to get a list of dimensions for the super 12's. The WA is 16.5in wide and the Scouts are the same width, so I would like to try and find an extension that was close to matching the width of the WA.

    The reason I am interested in a 4ohm extension is that I have read that the super 12's can tend to have a big appetite for watts (specifically have read this about the fEarful's). The WA will deliver about 500w @ 2ohms which seems plenty for any needs I have, but if the cabs are looking for more to hit design levels, and "open up" I need to consider that too.

    any opinions/experience to share ?
     
  2. IF I remember correctly there was a thread similar to this and we found the recommended Mesa 112 ext cab for the Walkabout combo has a different voicing so the thread ended with the OP needing to hear the different 112s with their Walkabout combo for themselves.
     
  3. Why not get the matching Mesa cab and then use one of those fearful mid boxes?
     
  4. Mystic Michael

    Mystic Michael Hip No Ties

    Apr 1, 2004
    New York, NY
    I suspect you'd be better off getting the Walkabout Scout extension cab. IME, under most circumstances you can assume that components of the same make & model are designed to work together optimally as a system. That's especially so with a company with a reputation for engineering excellence and product quality the likes of Mesa. :meh:

    Even if an individual cab offers "super" performance, the overall "system synergy" may often be better - and will likely be more consistent and predictable - with a matched set of cabs.

    If you want to go the super 12 route, best to plan it all out in advance, from scratch - as a complete system...

    MM

    P.S. To the best of my knowledge, of the five makes you've listed, only Acme and AudioKinesis offers a 4-ohm cab anyway...
     
  5. g4string

    g4string Supporting Member

    Sep 19, 2002
    Melissa, TX
    +1. With the weird passive radiator thingamajig on the Scout cab, I think you would be better off getting another Scout cab if you need to run a pair. The bummer is; for the price you pay for a new Scout cab, could get a "super 12". Trust me, I went down this road a month or so ago. I was looking at getting a WAS combo and another WA112 cab. I opted for getting 2 super 112 cabs + head. So far, the Baer ML112 (8ohm) + Aguilar TH500 has been able to hang. I dig the Aguilar, but I really want to try a WA head. I opted for the Aguilar instead of the WA head due to the difference of $500. I have heard some great things about the GB Streamliner 900 with super 12 cabs. But alas, my head GAS is a topic for a different thread.

    I think in your situation, if you're willing to try a single cab solution....maybe try an Audiokinesis TC112 as a standalone with your WA head. At least this way, your halfway there at getting a pair of super 112's. Or; if 1 will do you, then your done. I suppose if the TC isn't your thing you should be able to flip for what you paid for it in the classifieds. Prob wouldn't be the case trying to sell a WA112 cab for the same price....too much competition in the $600-$700 price range for the WA112 to sell at a new price if you tried to sell it used.

    FWIW, I don't think the WA head will have enough power to open up the 4ohm Acme. Although, I don't know for sure. The Acme's price point and looks would make me choose it over the TC112 if I had to pick between 2 4ohm cabs assuming I had the right amp to drive it. Before I chose a cab, I would call Andy and see what he thinks about the WA head having enough power to properly drive the Acme while getting the SPL you need. Tough choice.

    I'm digging the 8ohm Baer's. If you can do 8ohms, check them out.
     
  6. NKBassman

    NKBassman Lvl 10 Nerd Supporting Member

    Jun 16, 2009
    Winnipeg, MB, Canada
    All the single 12 or 15 fearful cabs are 8 ohms.
     
  7. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
    Without measured SPL charts there's no way of knowing, other than trying them side by side.
    You should stay with the matching extension, unless you have the opportunity to try both the matching extension and one of those other choices side by side and find the latter sounds better.
     
  8. lomo

    lomo passionate hack Supporting Member

    Apr 15, 2006
    Montreal
    I had both and just sold my Audiokinesis TC12. The TC12 is about as loud as 1.5 Scout 12s under the WA IME. It is also tuned notably higher. I did not particularly like the 2 cabs together because 1)they don't fit well and 2) the stack negated the strengths of each (low end extension of the WA and flat, more linear reaponse of the TC). In the end, I realized I have no loud gigs where the pair would be loud enough and no lower volume occasions where the Scout alone isn't just fine. Also note the TC12 will get significantly louder with a more powerful head.
     
  9. KJung

    KJung Supporting Member

    +1 As one who owned the Walkabout Scout combo, and also has owned/gigged and compared most of the 12's mentioned by the OP, none of them would make much sense on the bottom of the 4ohm (or quite frankly, the 8ohm version) Walkabout combo.

    The OP should get the matching 4ohm Scout extension cab and be happy. Many run the Walkabout at 2ohms with no problem, and the OP would get 'more of what he likes'. And the extension Scout 112 has just a wee bit more booty due to the larger box size (i.e., it doesn't have the head cut-out.
     
  10. Arjank

    Arjank

    Oct 9, 2007
    Above Amsterdam
    Best efficiency, in the low-bass, mid/bass? These two options alone can make a huge difference in efficiency (and max spl)
    Only an SPL chart measured at 1mtr at 2.83v (which means 2watts for a 4ohm cab) and showing measurements at different angles (up to 60degrees off-axis) can give you some information about how efficient a cabinet is. Forget about the angles measurements if you only care about the low's and lowmids.
     
  11. KJung

    KJung Supporting Member

    +1 From my direct comparison of these cabs, considering full range/perceived given the typical 500 watt 4ohm/300 watt 8ohm solid state head, here is how I would rank them regarding 'volume per watt', from low to high:

    Acme Fullrange or Flatwound 8ohm
    Acme Fullrange or Flatwound 4ohm

    Stock 3012LF 12/6 cab like the fEarful (80hm)
    Thunderchild112 (4ohm)
    Berg HD112 (8ohm)

    Baer ML112 (8ohm)

    As you suggest, the efficiency is directly related to the ratio of low end to upper/bass mid/mids in the voicing of these cabs. Since most come in only 4ohm or 8ohm version, I take the 'fixed impedance' into account in the comparison, since it 'is what it is'.

    Regarding maximum SPL with maximum watts, IME the stock 3012LF cabs (e.g., fEarful) pretty much win hands down if you can pump 500+ or so watts into them at 8ohms.
     
  12. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY
    :meh:

    This is a myth. The thing that people get confused about is that because the 3015LF and 3012LF can keep producing with lots of wattage (more than most any other production speaker), they think they'll need a lot of power (aka not very sensitive), sort of like those ol' Acme speakers. This is not the case. They sound great with 200w as much as with mega-wattages.

    But yes, you're not going to find a current production 4ohm single woofer fEARful.
     
  13. Eric Moesle

    Eric Moesle

    Sep 21, 2001
    Columbus OH
    I have a 3012LF-based 3-way from (..cough...) Dr. Bass that I bought used, and although it sounds awesome it is woefully ineffecient compared to my 3012HO-based single 12 2-way cabs.

    It is thicker, richer and sweeter, but it must be turned up MUCH higher than the others to obtain the same volume.
     
  14. KJung

    KJung Supporting Member

    +1 Those HO cabs are very midpresent and loud per watt. The Baer ML112 that I have listed as the highest efficiency of the 'Super 12's' that I have played is based on a custom driver that, according to Roger, kind of splits the difference between the LF and HO drivers, and you can hear it when comparing with an apples to apples moderate powered head.
     
  15. greenboy

    greenboy

    Dec 18, 2000
    remote mountain cabin Montana
    greenboy designs: fEARful, bassic, dually, crazy88 etc
    A lot of that also comes down to quality of design. Box size and tuning, choice of midrange driver (and its sensitivity), and finally, the crossover which really can give more or less apparent volume too.

    A final twist I've gigged with lately when I really want to cut through, is using my 12/6cube with the 18 Sound midrange driver with its padding defeated (switch for that designed into crossover). Midrange content soars as the general sensitivity of that part goes from 97 dB per watt/meter to 102 dB! A great aggressive sound that you might want in a stage mix, but not when practicing alone ; }

    Bowlus has done this too.
     
  16. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY
    I have an on/off switch with my 15/6 padding too. Lately I've been running just the 15/6 to keep rehearsal volumes to a minimum and have also been running it without any padding.
     
  17. Mojo-Man

    Mojo-Man

    Feb 11, 2003
    :cool:

    A Schroeder 12L will do the trick. (4 ohms)
     
  18. pfschim, and this is about how the last Walkabout ext cab thread ended. Good luck.
     
  19. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY
    Er, he asked about 'super 12's' and that's what people have been discussing? :confused:
     
  20. Hi Skies, yes he asked about a lot of cabs - but if you feel the need to add more by all means please do.
     

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