Effect of speaker specs on tone?

Discussion in 'Amps/Cabs Tech Corner: Amplifier, Cab & Speakers' started by mbratch, May 24, 2008.

  1. mbratch

    mbratch Member

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    What affect does each of these parameters for a speaker have on the speaker's sound/tone, all other things being equal?
    • Voice coil diameter
    • Wattage capacity
    • Magnet weight
    • Type of cone ribbing, or no ribbing
    • Type of dust cap
    • Frame color (just kidding!)
     
  2. Structo

    Structo Member

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    I'd say the speakers resonance frequency and sensitivity rating play a more important role along with what type of magnet is being used.
    But like a guitar, a speaker is a sum of it's parts.
     
  3. edgewound

    edgewound Gold Supporting Member

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    Every parameter is effected and I just lost a detailed post because I typed on my laptop and bumped the touchpad. I should know better!!!

    But it is very detailed, and the speaker you chose will have as much influence over your tone as the the amp that it's in.
     
  4. mbratch

    mbratch Member

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    I would think that some of these could be specifically tied to a tonal effect. For example having ribs causes less break-up than no ribs. Again, all other things being equal. I've seen, for instance, Weber speakers offered in no-rib, 5 concave ribs, or a bunch of convex ribs. This must contribute to different identifiable tonal effects.

    If I have two otherwise identical speakers, and you vary one of the other parameters, say voice coil diameter, what does it do to the sound? Does a larger voice coil give it more bass response, for example? (I don't know, that's why I ask.)
     
  5. rockon1

    rockon1 Member

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    Magnet weight seems to affect efficiency and bass response. All Celestion 100 db speakers are the large magnet type. All thier 96-97 db speakers have the smaller "M" magnet.

    Also I know from personal experience the "dust caps" can have a fairly dramatic affect on tone. I had a few Celestion Relic 30's. They were a one off test speaker with a large magnet and a small but stiff paper dust cap. It had subdued highs and little cone break up. Very middy.

    I removed the paper cap and replaced it with a large screen type. BAM! A totally different speaker. Not only did it have much more highs but it seemed less stiff . The paper cap made the cone more rigid. Yes Im a tinkerer!

    Before

    [​IMG]

    After

    [​IMG]
     
  6. mbratch

    mbratch Member

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    rockon1, that's an interesting experiment! :)

    Did you remove the inner cap, or leave it there?
     
  7. rockon1

    rockon1 Member

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    The inner cap had to be removed for my experiment! If I left it in place it would still have the afore mentioned affects on the speaker cone. I used a laser scapel to cleanly remove it....OK I used a razor blade! If you look closely you can see the voice coil opening in the bottom pic thru the cap.

    It really woke the speaker up. In this case the cap made a big difference. Bob
     
  8. pula58

    pula58 Silver Supporting Member

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    I have a Weber 12F150 "B" and I felt it had too much of the high frequencies (too piercing). So, I emailed Ted Weber and he sent to me two diffierent dustcaps. I glued one of them on and it changed the tone considerbly...less treble (exactly what I wanted)!!

    P.
     
  9. VacuumVoodoo

    VacuumVoodoo Member

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    The dust cap is what defines a loudspeakers high frequency response - consider that HF tweeters sound radiating element is often just a dome shaped cup and it will become obvious.

    Not only the diameter but cups material like paper, metal or impregnated cloth together with shape of the dome have great impact on HF response.
    Dome shape affects HF directional radiation pattern, concave vs.flat vs. convex the differences are very pronounced.

    Some wideband speakers have both a cup and a secondary cone shaped like exponential horn.

    Tweaking speakers is a whole field open to experimentation, I think folks at speaker manufacturers labs are having lots of fun.
     
  10. rockon1

    rockon1 Member

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    Indeed it can be. Some think Im nuts when try different caps on speakers. The last ones I did(the Relic 30's I posted above)were excellent platforms. They were only 29$ clearanced at CG. Not a cheap speaker by any means either. "Prototype" or one "test run" large magnet 60 watt Celestions that were made in England to boot! Not only did the thick paper cap reduce the highs it seemed to stiffen the cone so much most of the "good" sizzle was removed from distortion sounds. A very clean barking speaker originally but not for me. The large screen caps changed that completely. I havent A/B'd them but I think they sound more like a CL80 now. Bob
     

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