#1
I'm looking for a good replacement speaker for my J-20 20w, all tube amplifier. I find the stock speaker can get overly harsh and the low end lacks tightness.

I've checked out the Weber Blue Dog and Eminence Red Fang and both seem pretty suitable. Of course there's also the classic Celestion Alnico Blue, but its rated at 15w, and the gold is a little too pricey.

Does anyone have any experience with these or other speakers that they'd like to share?


¦ Epiphone Sheraton II ¦ GFS Mean 90s ¦ Ampeg J-20 ¦
¦ Fulltone OCD ¦ MXR 6-Band EQ ¦ Behringer Chorus ¦ Artec Analog Delay ¦ EHX Holy Grail ¦
#2
The Celestion Gold and Blues are fantastic speakers for low wattage amps. They have an excellent balance of tone and are extremely dynamic which makes them suitable for many different genres, even some metal. They are indeed pricey, but they're Celestions' "flagship" speaker. They're bound to be a little more expensive than the others.

A suitable compromise might be the G12M-Greenback and G12-65. I think they are a little more expensive as well, but not as much as the Alnico models.

I tell you what you should do... call Matamp on + 44 1484 859500 and ask for their advice on speakers. They stock every Celestion available, and now stock Eminence. They also may have a Jenson or a Weber lying aroud that might suit your needs. They will give you honest advice, even if you're not planning on shopping with them.
#3
Alnico tends to make both your problems worse, not better. The process used to manufacture alnico changed in around 1972. In 72 making the alnico became cheaper, the magnets held more of a charge, were more consistent, lasted significantly longer, and were harder to accidental discharge. Nobody imagined that anybody would ever want "lower quality" magnets that cost more so the old manufacturing methods have been forgotten and it's impossible to make modern alnico sound the way vintage alnico did.

Modern alnico is very thin and harsh in the top end, flubby in the low end and doesn't smooth out the way vintage alnico does. So if you are looking for that type of vintage smoothness you are actually better off with the right ceramic speakers.

If you can bring yourself to go with Ceramic pickups then the Kendrick Blackframe is a great vintage american voiced speaker that sounds remarkably similar to the Vintage Jensen P10 and P12 speakers. There are so many british voiced ceramic speakers that I wouldn't know where to start in terms of recommending but there are a lot of modern ceramic speakers that sound more like vintage alnico than modern alnico.

If you are still stuck on going alnico then for American tone look at the weber vintage series 12A150A or the 12A150. Both of these are based on the Jensen P12N which was the best 12" alnico Jensen that was common in guitar amps. The P12Q and P12R jensen speakers lacked depth so it's important to get one of the speakers that emulates the P12N. Don't buy a Jensen brand alnico speaker because the new ones sound nothing like the old ones.

If you want british tone then go with the Blue Dog. It's the best value british style alnico speaker you are going to find.
Last edited by CorduroyEW at Jun 13, 2010,
#4
does that "new versus old alnico" thing affect pickups too?
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
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#5
^yes but it's not as big of a problem as it is with speakers. In pickups modern alnico gives a more cutting top end, a more snappy bass, and more overall output. These qualities are not always bad things in pickups so for modern sounding modern pickups we don't need to do anything to compensate. For vintage sounding modern pickups, however, we do have to make modifications. Any idiot can take apart a pickup, draw up a blueprint, and then make another one using the same specs. The hard part is getting the same tone.

In humbuckers the good pickup makers will monitor the chemical specs of the steel they use. I have very specific amounts of carbon, iron, manganese, phosphorus, sulphur, and silicone that I want in the steel parts. Those amounts change depending on the magnet type and pickup position that I am building the pickup for. Single coil pickups don't have all the metal parts which is why, for my single coil pickups, I don't use vintage correct wax potting. Instead I use a special home made shellac mixture that starts with dry lac flakes and also includes things like a certain amount of water, conductive die, and even some whisky. I also bake my single coil pickups in the oven several times during various stages in the build process and these things change the performance and readings from the magnets and the coils of wire.

Speakers have some things in common with pickups, they still have a coil and a magnet, so some of the pickup tricks work with speakers too but speaker manufacturers have a lot more hurdles to jump over and the answers to their problems are much more complicated which is why it's harder to find good vintage tone from modern alnico speakers than it is to find good vintage tone from modern alnico pickups. It doesn't matter if you are dealing with pickups or speakers, it's important to find a company that isn't just trying to copy a blueprint, they are trying to copy a tone.
Last edited by CorduroyEW at Jun 13, 2010,
#6
Hmm...
The alinco speakers I've tried..they aren't like the best thing eva! But they definitely do sound different then ceramics...better in some ways, worse in others. Don't know if I would pay the 150+ upcharge for them new though.
Prs se Holcomb is the answer
#7
Hmm. That's a pretty interesting insight into alnico speakers. British tone is what I'm after, or at least a halfway house between the two so the Blue Dog seems to be a winner. Its available in ceramic and alnico so I'll have to decide between those. There's also the power rating: do I use an overpowered 15w or and underpowered 30w?


¦ Epiphone Sheraton II ¦ GFS Mean 90s ¦ Ampeg J-20 ¦
¦ Fulltone OCD ¦ MXR 6-Band EQ ¦ Behringer Chorus ¦ Artec Analog Delay ¦ EHX Holy Grail ¦
#8
You'll want the 50 for ur 112 unless u never plan on cranking it then the 30 might be enough. I wouldn't do the 15 since that amp is 20w before breakup.
Prs se Holcomb is the answer
#9
Quote by AcousticMirror
You'll want the 50 for ur 112 unless u never plan on cranking it then the 30 might be enough. I wouldn't do the 15 since that amp is 20w before breakup.

Why 50 though if the amp is only rated for 20w?


¦ Epiphone Sheraton II ¦ GFS Mean 90s ¦ Ampeg J-20 ¦
¦ Fulltone OCD ¦ MXR 6-Band EQ ¦ Behringer Chorus ¦ Artec Analog Delay ¦ EHX Holy Grail ¦
#10
Acause the amp puts out more then 20 when you crank. Most valve amps are rated before breakup. Look at the wattage info at www.scumback.com he explains it really well. You usually want double ur amp wattage 4 ur speakers
Prs se Holcomb is the answer
#11
thanks cord
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?