wood's you want and woods you don't

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by Matybigfro, Oct 24, 2008.

  1. Matybigfro

    Matybigfro Member

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    old wise men of experience and wisdom

    which are the woods that work in guitar cabs
    particularly 1x12s and 2x12s

    what i've seen is out there in the lower price ranges are
    birch plywood, pine kiefer, poplar
     
  2. SatelliteAmps

    SatelliteAmps Member

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    People have used all kinds of woods, with varying degrees of results. There are two issues, one is working with the wood, the other is tonality.

    One of the main advantages to using real Birch plywood (not the stuff at Home Depot or Lowe's, which has a different core wood), is that it is usually excellent and consistant quality, with little or no voids, and is very straight and will remain so. A lot of the pine available today is pretty wet wood, and as it dries out over time it warps and cracks, causing all kinds of issues.

    Tonal issues are a different matter. Wood choice can depend on the style of music, volume, and intended amp. Birch ply is consistant and does sound good. I'm sure others have their choices as well.
     
  3. Matybigfro

    Matybigfro Member

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    i'm lookin at buying a redy made cab but have heard that mdf cabs are bad so i'm interested on what was good
     
  4. JELLIS

    JELLIS Member

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    Peckerwood is the best :rotflmao
     
  5. SatelliteAmps

    SatelliteAmps Member

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    Baltic Birch plywood is very good and very standard for a lot of cabinet makers.

    MDF usually sounds dead and lifeless. They tend to be heavy. They tend to not sound anywhere close to a plywood cabinet. They tend to be cheaply made, cheaply sold, and usually loaded with cheap speakers.
     
  6. mrface2112

    mrface2112 Member

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    I prefer the sound and feel of a pine cabinet, birch ply just feels too stiff to me. I agree with everything Satellite says with respect to working with the wood--today's "Home Depot" pine can be frought with issues, and you want to avoid their "birch ply".

    Sonically, to my ears, the biggest different difference to my ears is that a pine cabinet interacts with the speaker(s), whereas birch does not. Pine produces a cabinet that resonates along with the speaker (which could be either good or bad). This can result in a lively cabinet that responds to the amp. IMO, an open back pine cabinet is essential to that Blackface Fender sound. Rich and vibrant come to mind.

    Birch on the other hand, for lack of a better term, "gets out of the way". It doesn't resonate quite like pine does, and lets the sound/tonality of the speakers come through, without coloring the sound. Much like pine/fender, IMO, a closed back birch ply cabinet is essential to the marshall 4x12 "sound"--big, deep and thumpy.

    Many others will eschew the virtues of a maple, mahogany, or walnut cabinet, of which many abound.

    YMMV


    cheers,
    wade
     
  7. rockon1

    rockon1 Member

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    Avatar or Lopo have affordable,ready made,well made(at this price point)birch plywood cabs.

    On a side "note". MFD is more suited for Hi Fi speakers. It has much less resonance than plywood or solid wood so it colors the sound far less. It robs less energy while doing so. With the right grade of MFD and the right design cab it might actually be interesting albeit very heavy. Bob
     
  8. SatelliteAmps

    SatelliteAmps Member

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    MDF is also great for bass cabinets, due to it's density.
     
  9. shngn7

    shngn7 Member

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    Baltic Birch is my favorite. I also like MDF. I used it to make a combo this summer and it turned out great and is pretty transparent sounding and the cost was cheap.
     
  10. rockon1

    rockon1 Member

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    The transparency aspect makes sense-low resonance. Still very heavy though.Bob
     
  11. thegame

    thegame Member

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    My VHT FB 4x12 has an MDF back, and it is somewhat transparent sounding. Sounds good though. There's a bigger difference in sound between various heads through this cab than some other cabs. Cool effect !
     

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