Choosing the right vintage reproduction 4X12 (was thread about Blockhead and 8-Ball)

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by opiate, Mar 23, 2015.

  1. opiate

    opiate Silver Supporting Member

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    Hi Everyone,

    I am after a great closed back 4X12. I don't want to dish out the money to get a real vintage pre 69 Marshall cab, so I want the next best thing.

    I have heard absolutely amazing things about the 8-Ball cabs that Ossie from Blockhead was making at some point, but I can't find any info about them anymore. Besides none seem available for sale anywhere. To expand my search I started thinking about finding a Blockhead 4X12, but at this point I can find very little information about them. Can anyone tell me how these Blockhead cabs compared to the 8-Balls? Were they made with the same level of attention to detail and vintage authenticity?
    Any information would be very useful.

    I've also heard some great things about Bruno 4X12's, but the price point on these is pretty high. Of course, I've never played a Bruno product that I didn't like, so I'm sure they are truly top of the line.

    Thanks in advance for any advice and info.

    Ian
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2015
  2. opiate

    opiate Silver Supporting Member

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    Thanks for the links, and yeah I've thought about both of those.
    The trouble is that by the timeyou load them up with the right speakers you start approaching the general price range of real vintage Marshall cabs.

    I'm specifically interested in Blockhead info though, cause I may be able to find one of those.
     
  3. Sirloin

    Sirloin Supporting Member

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    StoneAge? Germino?
     
  4. opiate

    opiate Silver Supporting Member

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    Well, thats the thing.. how DO you choose a faithful vintage Marshall reproduction cab? Its not exactly easy to demo these things, and its not like they are widely available. Lots of choices out there and everyone's site claims that they spent years taking apart vintage cabs and reproducing them screw by screw.

    This is why I'd appreciate any feedback from people who have had the chance to experiment with these in person.

    Ian
     
  5. StratStringSlinger

    StratStringSlinger Member

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    I too would be interested in knowing from folks that have tried these side by side if there is any appreciateable difference between say a Metro, Germino, Scumback, etc 4x12?
     
  6. opiate

    opiate Silver Supporting Member

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    hehehe, you should have started the thread instead of me, since you phrased the question far more eloquently.
    Personally I was specifically interested in Blockhead stuff because I know of a cab for sale and I know that Ossie really knows his stuff. But a comparison of other great reproductions would be fantastic.

    The problem is that I wonder how many people have actually ever managed to make a fair comparison, one that accounts for factors such as speaker type (as well as the condition of the exact speakers used),using the same head in comparison, etc. I've always found the cabinet to be the trickiest 'x-factor' to explore and understand.

    Just to illustrate my point, here is a great speaker comparison I've found on Youtube:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2GLVcvwq4C8
    Here they used a single vintage Marshall cab and switched the speakers that were in there, keeping the amp, mic and recording settings constant. In other words isolating the speakers themselves as a variable.

    I think everyone can agree that the differences made by the speakers were quite extreme, and very clearly audible. However in this case the speakers themselves were isolated as a very controlled variable. If one was to re-eq the amp even slightly, some of the sound ifferences could be compensated, making the comparison far less effective and the differences a lot less clear.

    I've never heard a comparison where the actual cabinets were the isolated controlled variable factor, and where the same set of speakers was switched between something like a vintage Marshall, a few good current commercially available option (a new Marshall cab, a Bogner 4X12, Mesa,etc) and some of the various boutique vintage reproductions mentioned earlier in this thread. What will the actual differences be there based on speaker cab construction and materials as well as the grill cloth? I think this is a hard one to answer, cause its not a matter of simply 'test driving' a great speaker cabinet. It would involve having someone with a lot of resources and a lot of time, and the results would still be heavily debated.

    So in the end it comes back to the only reasonable thing one can request, which is to hear people's first hand experiences and use them as a loose guide when doing one's own research.,,, And in the end if you really must have a faithful vintage Marshall 4X12 sound, then you have to go out and grab an original (knowing that no two are the same). The further you go down the rabbit hole, the more you realize how subjective this all is. In the end all you can do is find a cab you love and use it as the foundation.

    So those of you who have built cabinets or have worked extensively with them, how would you describe the role that the cabinet itself plays in the sound? What are the factors being effected, and what would you look for when choosing a great cab.

    Ian
     
  7. opiate

    opiate Silver Supporting Member

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    Also, any opinions on the Matchless 4X12's? I know they're not the classic marshall style, but I'd still love to know what everyone thinks.
     

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