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Heritage Greenbacks and G12-65s, and how my ears have changed

dehughes

Member
Messages
1,156
Or perhaps it's just my tastes have changed.

Or the cabs are different (they are).

I have a 1960BX cabinet from about 1997 that has a quad of very new Heritage Greenbacks in it. It's a beautiful cab, but is kinda stiff, and it seems to me that the Heritage Greenbacks need to get up and working before they sound great. Which they do, but IIRC the regular Greenbacks didn't need to get pushed as much to do their thing. It seems the 1960BX with the Heritage Greenbacks is a bit more cloudy than I'd like.

I also have a circa 1981 Marshall JCM 800 lead 4x12 that has a quad of equally new G12-65 reissue speakers in it. That cabinet is looser and creakier than the BX cab, which it should be as it has been carted around and gigged and played for twice as long. Still though, that cabinet with those speakers, even though they are still not even close to being broken in, has a balance and an openness that the other lacks. It seems as though the G12-65 speakers are more "ready" to do their thing at any volume...tighter bass, more even-keeled, and less cloudy than their Heritage Greenback relatives in the BX cabinet. Plus, just knocking on the two cabinets hints at their different resonances and tightness, with the JCM 800 cab being looser and more open. I bet if I pushed them both, using the same speakers, the BX cab would hold together better at high volumes, though.

All this is via a JCM 2000 DSL 50 head that I just picked up (and will be shortly returning). I'm going for the low gain deal a la 1975-1981 AC/DC, but those G12-65s seem to hint they'll do far more if asked. They seem to be even more versatile than the Heritage Greenbacks, which were, until hearing the G12-65s, my favorite speaker. Times and ears and tastes change, it seems.
 

EADGBE

Senior Member
Messages
12,338
Well greenbacks are an older design speaker. Maybe you like newer sounds. Vintage designs aren't necessarily better.
 

FourT6and2

Member
Messages
2,125
You're comparing 20-watt speakers to 65-watt speakers. That is the difference. And the 65s really come alive when you push them. At least my original 65s do.
 

BADHAK

Member
Messages
9,907
Wait till you put some original 12-65's in the 81 cab, you will be blown away how much better they are than the reissues. I used a Heritage 12-65 loaded 2x12 for years/ hundreds of gigs and sold it as soon as I got a 82 JCM 4104 combo loaded with original 12-65's. Got a early 80's slant cab with original 12-65's this week and it freaking rocks. None of the woolliness ,politeness ,and especially the harsh top end that made single notes a chore. The vintage speakers compress so much better.

The Chinese Greenbacks in my 1960ax are quiet nice and are close enough for anyone but obsessives like me.

But once I got my vintage 2203's it was just a matter of time till the little bit of moderness of the 1960ax got to me. A slight mid scoop and smoothness that I dont associate with vintage ACDC (or any 70's hard rock bands)
But into a 68 straight cab or a 78 Blackback 30 slant and you will feel like you're in the room with ACDC recording Powerage (well except for the incredible playing )
 

C-4

Member
Messages
14,512
Even if the speakers, both new, and vintage, were made of the same specs and materials exactly alike, two things still make them different...time and usage.

While usage may be alotted for if the speakers are used in a rock environment as they might have been when they were new, time cannot be duplicated on how it reacts to the materials and changes them ever so slightly on a molecular level from time and usage.
 

dehughes

Member
Messages
1,156
Interesting. For those who have played both the Heritage Greenbacks and the reissue G12-65s...which would you say is the more versatile speaker? I ask because both quads I have are still very new...about 10 hours max on them, so they're not even close to broken in for a fair assessment.

I'm likely going to have to sell one of the cabs in order to fund a head purchase, so I'm going to have to cull wisely. :)
 

BADHAK

Member
Messages
9,907
I've not played the Heritage Greenback, but comparing 25 watt reissues with Heritage 12-65's, I reckon the 25's are a better all round speaker, especially for authentic ACDC .The only advantage the 12-65 might have is that it stays cleaner with volume. The difference in breakup would be even more pronounced with a 20 vs 65 watt speaker.

My advice is to sell the BX cab and both sets of Heritage speakers and get a quad of Blackbacks or original 12-65's for the 81 cab. You might have to wait a little longer to get the head, but it's an investment that will pay big dividends for a guy chasing those tones.
 
Last edited:

Sirloin

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
16,755
Technically the 20 watt Heritage G12M Greenback speakers are still 25 watts just like the Chinese Greenback.

The label is just a historic thing for Celestion.

G12-65s and Greenbacks are both great speakers in my opinion. They're just different sounding.

I happen to love the Heritage speakers if they are in a 412 cab.

They are a touch less efficient than the 65s as well.
 

dehughes

Member
Messages
1,156
Interesting. Yes, the Heritage Greenbacks seems a bit more lifeless and quiet compared to the G12-65s. I'll crank the amp up some tomorrow and get a better picture of things. I initially grabbed them because I like the regular Greenbacks and gravitate more toward low-efficiency speakers, but I'm thinking they may be a bit too low efficiency for me. I've heard they need to be played with an amp that's cranked up a bit in order to "do their thing", so I'll give that a whirl tomorrow before I decide.
 




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