What's in a SWR cab anyway?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by MMStingRay, Sep 13, 2004.

  1. MMStingRay


    Aug 17, 2004
    supported by Hipshot, Diamond strings and Clayton picks
    I have the workingman rig with 4004/210/115 and it works fine. Sounds good and easy to transport. I'm looking at getting a 410 now. Ampeg is good about telling you Magnet weight, voice coil size and even cabnet design. But SWR dosen't tell you anything. I like my SWR but don't feel good about the amount of info they let out. I may go Ampeg just for that reason. Also, the cost of SWR (now Fender) 410's are equal to Ampeg gear. Ampeg is from $500 to $700 and the SWR is $600. (for the 410 sticker, you can do better then that most of the time)
    One more Q: I want a 410 just to beef up the rig it seems like the 210s don't give me the clear stage sound I'd like at higher volumes. (sounds fine out front, I've been told). Am I thinking right or sould I be looking at it differently? :bag:
  2. jock


    Jun 7, 2000
    Stockholm, Sweden
    Play them both!
    Ampeg and SWR sounds compleatly different. SWR makes better cabs IMO. I think Ampegs SVT cabs fart out quite early. But if you want the Ampeg sound that is the way to go.
  3. MMStingRay


    Aug 17, 2004
    supported by Hipshot, Diamond strings and Clayton picks
    I like the sound of the SWR, it's just making me nuts that I don't know the quality of what's in it or what it's made of.
    Ampeg seems proud of what's in their cabnets but SWR, not so much.

    ? You don't care for the SVT410HLF/HE or the BSE series?

    I haven't spent any time playing through any Ampegs but everyone love the stuff.
  4. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    A lot of people love Ampeg, but I would not say 'everyone love the stuff'. I don't care for Ampeg cabinets at all. Different strokes for different folks, as they say.
  5. Petebass


    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    Speakers are usually made by PAS, so there's nothing to worry about there. From a design point of view, the cabs are structurally similar to Eden in that they have a shelf port which also doubles as bracing to strengthen it.

    There's nothing more to tell really. Buy whatever sounds best. I'm another one who prefer's SWR to Ampeg, but there's sooooo much choice out there, you really should consider trying out as many brands as possible.
  6. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Staff Member Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    my 2 cents is to stay away from swr wm cabs and shell out the extra for the pro level cabs
    but really you should try a bunch of stuff, and always consider used, now more than ever people are selling perfectly good gear because it's not the "latest greatest thing"
  7. thejohnkim


    Sep 30, 2003
    i've generally had good experiences with the SWR pro stuff, and the workingmans combos.

    and the ampeg stuff i tried wasnt my cup of tea.

    why base a purchase on availible info? both companies make quality stuff, SWR probably just doesnt feel that they need to hype up their products as much as ampeg does, kinda like how Mesa/Boogie doesnt put up any detailed specs of their stuff because they feel the products speak for themselves.
  8. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    OK, assume that SWR tells you all the nuts and bolts of what's inside. Next thing you know, everyone is off buying Avatar because they use the same parts! They got burned years ago when the word got out that Eden built the original Goliath cabs for SWR.

    SWR does tell you some stuff about the cabs, for instance they use LeSon piezo tweeters in the WM cabs. Hey so does Genz Benz! For that matter the Foster tweeters used in the SWR pro cabs are also used in Eden, Peavey, Ampeg, etc. etc., etc.

    Amp makers may also have to change suppliers over time. The SWR Baby Blue amp originally came with Bag End woofers (actually made by Eminence) but they had QC issues with them so switched to Celestions, then Celestion stopped making that driver so they switched to a newer Eminence similar to the old one :rolleyes: So who cares if you dig the Bag End or Celestion sound? You can't get those speakers any more, period.

    Use your ears when buying cabs and stop depending so much on spec sheets. After telling you how big and heavy the box is, the power handling and impedance the rest of the specs might as well be trivia.
  9. Finger Blister

    Finger Blister

    Jul 8, 2003
    Stupid footnote -

    Bryan Beller (in 2001) told me that when SWR changed
    from Celestions 8" speakers they went to "SWR Custom Designed"
    which are made in Asia by Foster (Fostex),
    the same company that makes Foster (Fostex) horns.
  10. "Dat is all da people need to know"

  11. MMStingRay


    Aug 17, 2004
    supported by Hipshot, Diamond strings and Clayton picks
    didn't know people thought so highly of SWR. Asking around here you'd think the world turns on Ampeg. I like the Ampeg sound and the price is bad compared to SWR.
    I have the SWR WM stuff and played the SWR pro gear in the store. The pro gear didn't sound twice as good as the Workingman cabnets (the price tag is twice as much).

    I haven't seen any Avastar cabnets? Someone told me to check ou CGM cabnet. What's known about those two?
  12. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    There is the law of diminishing returns to consider when comparing gear and prices.

    Something that costs twice as much won't be twice as good, unless you are talking about say a $200 bass vs. a $400 bass.

    For example, Fender USA basses are good, pro quality basses. You can get a new USA Jazz bass for under $1000, if you look around. Then you have makers like Sadowsky. A Sadowsky Jazz will set you back around $3000. Are Sadowskys 3 times as good as a USA Fender? I am sure that some Sadowsky owners would say that they are, but you have to decide if they are worth 3 times as much to you.

    What about a Fodera? There are Fodera models that list for close to $10,000. Are they three times better than the aforementioned Sadowsky?

    Probably not. But obviously, to some people, they are worth 3 times the price, even if the quality isn't three times better. You just have to decide at what price point the return isn't worth the extra investment.

    FWIW, the SWR pro series stuff is considered to be right up there with anybody else's top of the line stuff.
  13. Folmeister

    Folmeister Knowledge is Good - Emile Faber Supporting Member

    May 7, 2003
    Tomball, Texas
    Ampeg cabinets are filled with darkness, fear, and demonic spirits. SWR cabs are filled with Keebler elves who make cookies, pies, and cakes all day long. Sorry, but this thread looked like it could use some levity.
  14. Petebass


    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    :D :D It's funny coz it's true.
  15. Ian Perge

    Ian Perge Supporting Member

    May 11, 2001
    Evansville, Indiana
    Is it just the cabs, 'cause I've got a Mini Mo' and would like some tasty snacks as well! :D

    It's also worth mentioning that the general "taste" in the music-of-the-moment influences public perception. In the mid/late 80's, the "SWR hi-fi" sound was all over recordings even if SWR itself wasn't used. Grunge comes in like a wave, and both players and producers want the classic SVT tone. Times, tastes, and the consumer's wants change.

    It's dependent on both the player's preference in tone, the type of music that it calls for, and the general state of music. A large part of "my sound" is my Mini Mo' or other SWR product, but if I were to do a session where it wasn't called for or would work against the music? I wouldn't bother bringing it.
  16. I don't know what they are made of but i don't change my Goliath Sr. for nothing!!! I use an Ampeg SVT Classic and I tried it with the Ampeg 8 X 10 cab and my Goliath sounded a LOT better!!! No contest!!!

  17. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Staff Member Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    the listen with the ears is definitely the best route
    the only reason i'm not huge on the wm cabinets is i dont think they sound all that great AND, i think having the SWR logo on them allows for a price that wouldnt go if they were say, made by Crate
    jmo :cool:
  18. MMStingRay


    Aug 17, 2004
    supported by Hipshot, Diamond strings and Clayton picks
    That's it! You may not like the SWR WM but you had no right comparing it to a bottem feeder like Crate. lol
    I like the WM, it's not top shelf but it's a good cabnet. better then any Crate or Fender (who now own SWR) and every bit as good as the GK's out there.

    The SWR Pro line is too pricey. Ampeg is lower priced the the SWR pro line.

    I'm looking at the Avatar cabnets (can't be any worst the Carvin)

    What's up with the fad to run 12" speakers?
  19. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    Pick the cabinet that sounds best... I used to look down upon Workingmans cabinets...partially because of a review of the WM160 head (IIRC) in BP where they said skip the WM410s and get Goliaths. I owned Goliaths and I was totally blown away by a pair of WM410s that I used at a gig (borrowed the other guy's rig). A lot more natural sounding to me (whatever that means).

    Happened into a Guitar Center a month or so ago, some sweet (non slapped!!!!) bass lines were coming out of the bass corner. The guy was playing through a Behringer head and a Workingman's 1x15...it sounded great...deep, loud, toneful, etc.

    Like Petebass' sig. line says..."Listen with your ears and not your eyes".
  20. Rich Kurtz

    Rich Kurtz

    May 8, 2009
    I agree - SWR PRO stuff is really nice. I've used Ampeg, but have always owned SWR! You can't go wrong.