Converting a Fender Princeton Reverb to a 12" Speaker

1973Marshall

Member
Messages
6,776
After suffering some damage my Fender Princeton Reverb is in need of a new cabinet. It is still housed in it's original cabinet but since a replacement cab is due it seemed like a good time to consider whether there is a benefit to a 12" speaker.

Princeton's are wonderful amps but there is a part of me that wonders if the fuller, warmer sound of a 12" wouldn't be the better way to go.

Has anyone here converted their Princeton to a 12"? If so, what was your experiences? What did you like or dislike? Which speakers worked best?
 

sonofspy

Member
Messages
658
After suffering some damage my Fender Princeton Reverb is in need of a new cabinet. It is still housed in it's original cabinet but since a replacement cab is due it seemed like a good time to consider whether there is a benefit to a 12" speaker.

Princeton's are wonderful amps but there is a part of me that wonders if the fuller, warmer sound of a 12" wouldn't be the better way to go.

Has anyone here converted their Princeton to a 12"? If so, what was your experiences? What did you like or dislike? Which speakers worked best?
Plug the speaker out from the Princeton into a 12" cabinet. Find out.
 

1973Marshall

Member
Messages
6,776
Plug the speaker out from the Princeton into a 12" cabinet. Find out.
Yeah, I've done that. That's not nearly the same as having a small cab w/12" speaker. Also, my external cabs are 2x12 and have Celestions.

Looking to hear experiences from people who have actually moved to 12" and whether they liked it or regretted it. Recording or gigging with 10" speakers vs. 12" can be a very different sound and feel.
 

caspersvapors

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,272
Just get a speaker baffle for a 12 and then pickup a mojotone baffle converter so you can switch between a 10 or 12 - no regrets needed
 

gldtp99

Member
Messages
3,795
I had Mojotone build up a BF Princeton Reverb cab with the speaker cut for a 12".

I used a Celestion G12M.

I built the chassis up from currently available parts.

I'm perfectly happy with it.
 

John s

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
145
I have a '62 Brown princeton & put in a 12" Eminence. This amp was made for a 12" speaker. It sounds much warmer & louder with better projection.
it's like the 12" speaker allows it to "breathe"
 

Khromo

Member
Messages
992
I have a '75 Princeton Reverb that I modified to fit a 12" driver. It has an Alnico Blue in it now, and for me, it is an enormous improvement over any 1x10" iteration I tried. The twelve is starting to move more air, and that amp just sounds a class and a half bigger with the 12" than the stock version. A healthy PR is kind of limited by using one 10", if you are looking for some volume.

(Of course, my Champs have all been bumped up to 10's, so take my opinion for what it is worth!)

Some will find that the 12" adds bottom that they don't want and volume that they don't need, so I understand the guys who prefer the Princeton Reverb with a 10".

I also converted these two Princeton No-Verbs to 12's.





There is very little room in there, fitting the driver around the caps and transformers, and a little less in a Reverb model, but it can be done.
 

Hulakatt

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
13,575
Princeton's are wonderful amps but there is a part of me that wonders if the fuller, warmer sound of a 12" wouldn't be the better way to go.
Warmer and fuller 12"? Anyone ever complain that an SVT is cold and thin? Nothing but 10"s in there. Tweed Bassman? Super Reverb? Vibrolux Reverb? Same thing. Maybe try a better speaker instead. Putting a larger speaker in a cab without increasing the size gives the speaker less space to breathe in and pushes it towards being boxier.
 

Tiger Ted

Member
Messages
396
Warmer and fuller 12"? Anyone ever complain that an SVT is cold and thin? Nothing but 10"s in there. Tweed Bassman? Super Reverb? Vibrolux Reverb? Same thing. Maybe try a better speaker instead. Putting a larger speaker in a cab without increasing the size gives the speaker less space to breathe in and pushes it towards being boxier.
I concur. Never heard a 12" speaker in a Princeton that I liked. Much better off finding the right 10 to suit you. There are lots of 10" speakers with gobs of low end and volume.
 

Hulakatt

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
13,575
I concur. Never heard a 12" speaker in a Princeton that I liked. Much better off finding the right 10 to suit you. There are lots of 10" speakers with gobs of low end and volume.
There's such a weird and persistent misinformation in the guitar world that somehow bigger speakers put out more low end. It's about as accurate as saying all red things are hot. Different speakers are EQ'd differently, that's it. You just have to find one with the right wattage for your amp and the right EQ for your ears.

Size doesn't matter guys, really ;)
 

zenas

Member
Messages
8,699
My brother and I have a friendly argument going on this subject. My 64 PR had a 71 CTS alnico 10" when I got it, I'll probably never change it because it works for me. His PR and 6g2 Princeton both run 12s, they work for him.
There's really no wrong answer here, find what you like and go with it.
 

Khromo

Member
Messages
992
Warmer and fuller 12"? Anyone ever complain that an SVT is cold and thin? Nothing but 10"s in there. Tweed Bassman? Super Reverb? Vibrolux Reverb? Same thing...
One 10 is not the same thing as two, or three, or four, or eight. It is different, and it is a lot smaller.

...Putting a larger speaker in a cab without increasing the size gives the speaker less space to breathe in and pushes it towards being boxier.
Speakers in open back cabs behave the same regardless of the box dimensions. It is a free air environment, the speaker doesn't breathe, and it doesn't care where all those waves coming off the back of the cone go.
 

Khromo

Member
Messages
992
There's such a weird and persistent misinformation in the guitar world that somehow bigger speakers put out more low end. It's about as accurate as saying all red things are hot...Size doesn't matter guys, really ;)
All things being equal, a larger speaker will have greater low end extension (louder, deeper bass) than a smaller speaker.

In speakers and speaker design, size is extremely important.
 

edro

Member
Messages
863
Bud has an old Pr with an old JBL 12".....
Killer... To me much thicker than all his other Princetons...
 

adamdaniel

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
551
This is definitely a personal taste thing, but I had Kerry Wright make a second baffle for my ‘66 Princeton reverb that fits a 12, and I never find myself switching back to the original baffle with the 10.
 

Northerner

Member
Messages
1,654
My 1965 all original Princeton Reverb is currently living in an Allen
Accomplice Jr cab.
It’s the same width as a stock cab, a bit taller, and a bit deeper.
Had an Alnico Cream in at first which was good. Changed to an old broken in C Rex and it became great.
Works well with a 4 piece original rock band. Other guitar player has a Vibrolux reissue and I have to be careful not to be too loud.
The amp sounds really good in its stock cab but this configuration makes it much bigger sounding.
Had to pair it with my ‘66 Princeton to play live with that cab.
not so with this one.
 

billyguitar

Member
Messages
5,273
If it's a new build I would go with a 12 because I have a lot of those laying around to try, not so many 10s. If you already have the 10" baffle I would stick with that. It used to be that 10s just couldn't be as loud as a 12. The new modern designed 10s by Eminence and Celestion can give you 95% of what a twelve can do. I have a Gold C in my Brown Princeton, and Eminence Lil Buddy in a modded BF Princeton. I have no desire to go with a 12" baffle. They are very satisfying just the way they are with these speakers. I also put a Celestion Vintage 10 in my Pro Jr IV. It kicks a LOT more butt than the flatulent little Jensen that came in it. BTW: There is a video on Youtube about putting a Celestion Gold 10 in a Pro Jr. I tried and it doesn't even come close to fitting in my Pro Jr, even with the magnet cover off.
 

Khromo

Member
Messages
992




A 12" speaker, tilt-back legs, and a short pedal board. This little rig will go well over 100 dB at 6 feet and stay clean, if you want. With an always-on compressor providing a little gain and fatness, this is a very formidable amp!
 

paddywhack

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,270
Put a Jupiter alnico 12 inch in your Princeton and you will likely find Princeton Nirvana....a Celestion gold if you want a some more clean headroom and more hi-fi punch....

....there are those who maintain that a Princeton ain’t a Princeton without a 10.... I guess that’s true but what it definitely is a fuller sounding amp at lower as well as higher volume levels....it might not get as snotty if that’s yer thing....but if it is yer thing stick with a ten...
 
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