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Thread: 2 lower wattage speakers vs higher wattage speakers?

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    Super Toneologist IMENATOR's Avatar
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    Default 2 lower wattage speakers vs higher wattage speakers?

    I may have the chance to buy a couple of these https://celestion.com/product/17/g12h_anniversary/

    I have read these are like the big magnet version of Greenbacks and I have liked the sound a lot so far. So I could buy a couple of these for a 2x12 HOWEVER I reading and listening shootouts of this against Eminence Wizard and they do sound quite similar and they both get great reviews.

    So my power amp is 60 watts but I don't think I will reach any more than 40 or 45 watts (live or rehearsal), that means feeding around 60% (give or take) of the G12H-30 max power handling. Same statement for for a single Eminence Wizard.

    But here is my question: What have you liked so far and why, several low watt speakers or a single high watt speaker? Why? People claim more speakers means more low end without loosing the articulation but I am not a fan of lots of low end for guitar, that is what I want the bass player to take care of in a band situation, but surely I may be missing the point.

    I have only have 1x12 combos or cabs so far, that is why I ask. Maybe I should just try the 2x12 and experience myself but I like to read your opinion.

    Edit: I should have said it would be all closed back cabinets. I have also read it should move more air with the same amount of power and do a better spread of sound but on the other hand I have read people complaining closed cabs are too directional anyways so more speakers of laser focus sound may not have that much of a better sound spread?
    Last edited by IMENATOR; 12-06-2018 at 03:20 PM.
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    Mojo's Minions Lake Placid Blues's Avatar
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    Default Re: 2 lower wattage speakers vs higher wattage speakers?

    In my experience the physical size and design of the cabinet is more important than the number of speakers. For example, a 1x12 that is a cube shape of about 20" by 18" will always sound a little small and boxy compared to a 1x12 cabinet that is a rectangle of about 25" by 18". Porting helps a lot, but the Approx. 25" wide 1x12 still wins every time. In the wider 1x12 the speaker is usually not centered in the cabinet, but it has longer and shorter spans in both the vertical and in the horizontal. The wider 1x12 can be ported too. The problem is that once the cabinet gets this big, it is almost as big as a well designed 2x12 could be small. A 2x12 usually has more punch, even if not closed back.

    The problem of beaming, can be solved by rear porting design. It offers much of the punch and tightness of closed back with the dispersion of opened back.

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    Our Neighbor Totoro FuseG4's Avatar
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    Default Re: 2 lower wattage speakers vs higher wattage speakers?

    for me adding more 1x12 cabs never did much for the "boxy" sound of a small cab but it does help spread that sound around. putting 2 lower wattage speakers in a 212 is a deeper clearer sound to me than one 112 that is higher power. It's that boxy sound of a 112 combined with I generally find higher power handling speakers darker than lower rated ones.
    Last edited by FuseG4; 12-06-2018 at 08:36 PM.

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    Mojo's Minions dystrust's Avatar
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    Default Re: 2 lower wattage speakers vs higher wattage speakers?

    I have a 1978 Marshall 4x12 loaded with original blackback G12Hs. It was my #1 cab from fall 2001 until mid-2007, and I've barely played it since then. It was replaced by an Earcandy Buzzbomb loaded with Eminence Wizards, and the two cabs sound almost identical when played side by side. I also picked up a ported 1x12 and loaded that with a Wizard for use with my Mini Jubilee. I use the head and cab that suits my purpose, and don't really worry about specific speakers because they all sound so similar. If you have 1x12 cabs and are worried about power handling, go with Wizards.

    On an unrelated note, I'm not a huge fan of the G12H Anniversary. They're decent sounding speakers, but not as good as the G12Hs in my 4x12 IMO. The only dead-on G12H clones I've heard are Scumbacks, but they're extremely expensive and probably unobtainium in Mexico.
    Quote Originally Posted by crusty philtrum View Post
    And that's probably because most people with electric guitars seem more interested in their own performance rather than the effect on the listener ... in fact i don't think many people who own electric guitars even give a poop about the effect on a listener. Which is why many people play electric guitars but very very few of them are actually musicians.

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    Ultimate Tone Slacker Jacew's Avatar
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    Default Re: 2 lower wattage speakers vs higher wattage speakers?

    Personally I really, really like g12h anniversaries. They may sound harsh in open back cab. But in closed back cab they've been the best sounding speakers I've heard.

    Aside their tone itself, one really big plus for those speakers is how they handle wattage. They sound as lively as you'd expect low wattage speaker do with low volumes, but you can push them to their limits without altering tone. They won't compress or budge or change their eq response like g12m for instance. It's the same tone no matter how loud you play them.

    I haven't tried Wizard, but all Eminence speakers I've tried have had this hollow and tight mid raspy sound which I think is unique to them. I think they sound less lively, but more articulate and flatter than Celestions.

    EDIT: So what I think about this. Listen both in real situation if you can. I believe 1 speaker vs 2 makes less difference than the speaker model in this case.

    I have anniversaries in both 1x12 and oversized 2x12, and the big difference between them is how direct the sound is. If I drop the vertical 2x12 on it's side so it sits as low as 1x12, tonal differences are not anything meaningful.
    Last edited by Jacew; 12-06-2018 at 10:47 PM.
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    Tone Member dpaterson's Avatar
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    Default Re: 2 lower wattage speakers vs higher wattage speakers?

    I'm by no means qualified to offer any opinion here based on my own technical knowledge of the topic but based on a discussion I had some time ago on the Marshall forums on a similar topic these points were mentioned:

    Speaker efficiency is something to be considered apparently.

    And a 1 x 12 (1 x 100W RMS), for example, is perceptually louder than, say, a 4 x 12 (4 x 25W RMS) as the sound is not divided up or distributed and is more focused with a 1 x 12.

    Also (and this is a deduction I made based on the discussion at the time): a 100W RMS speaker will sound better than a 200W RMS speaker given a 100W RMS input from the amp. the reason being that the 200W RMS speaker is not being driven to capacity (or, rather, is only being "half driven" at any volume) and will therefore not be moving as much air (but not sure if this has anything to do with efficiency). If there's any truth or merit to this deduction: then a lower wattage speaker, given the same input, is being adequately driven (obviously until the input exceeds its power rating).

    Dunno if any of the above is relevant or even accurate but thought I'd put it out there anyway i.e. you chaps would know better I'm sure.

    Regards,

    Dale.

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    Mojo's Minions
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    Default Re: 2 lower wattage speakers vs higher wattage speakers?

    Btw both Celestion and Eninence have far far higher wattage rated single speakers...150w even 250w

    Don't trust an amp's rating, it's ballpark NOT unachievable max/peak. On my blown speakers thread, people were blowing up multiple much higher rated speakers with a 22-watter iirc.
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    Super Toneologist IMENATOR's Avatar
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    Default Re: 2 lower wattage speakers vs higher wattage speakers?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jacew View Post
    I have anniversaries in both 1x12 and oversized 2x12, and the big difference between them is how direct the sound is. If I drop the vertical 2x12 on it's side so it sits as low as 1x12, tonal differences are not anything meaningful.
    This is what I suspected, speaker facing at your ears do sound different as facing at your feet.
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    Toneologist IM4Tone's Avatar
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    Default Re: 2 lower wattage speakers vs higher wattage speakers?

    For my tastes, 2X12 every time and more power handling capabilities than 1.5X the amp's output. Beyond that, the speaker's characteristics should dictate the choice....and I like the Wizard mixed with a Swamp Thang in a 2X12. JMHO

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    Mojo's Minions
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    Default Re: 2 lower wattage speakers vs higher wattage speakers?

    PS oh yeah and the H30 alone sounds kind of sad... half-decent in h30/v30 mixes, but still, there's better options out there.

    Without your wattage dilemma, too
    "New stuff always sucks" -Me

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    Ultimate Tone Slacker Jacew's Avatar
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    Default Re: 2 lower wattage speakers vs higher wattage speakers?

    Quote Originally Posted by Adieu View Post
    PS oh yeah and the H30 alone sounds kind of sad... half-decent in h30/v30 mixes, but still, there's better options out there.

    Without your wattage dilemma, too
    I stand with what I said. It's the best sounding guitar speaker out there!

    I hate V30 sound. Tried G12H with couple of different V30's and I concur it was half-decent. Full G12H setup sounds much better.
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    Mojo's Minions
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    Default Re: 2 lower wattage speakers vs higher wattage speakers?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jacew View Post
    I stand with what I said. It's the best sounding guitar speaker out there!

    I hate V30 sound. Tried G12H with couple of different V30's and I concur it was half-decent. Full G12H setup sounds much better.
    Are you playing with a mildly overdriven honky oldskool Fender single coil or Gibson PAF sound?

    In that case, yeah, you can get some pretty nice "muddy cleans"... otherwise, hell no.

    One thing's for sure, H30 has a distinct flavor, and it ain't your goes-with-everything kind like ketchup or hot sauce
    Last edited by Adieu; 12-08-2018 at 06:07 AM.
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    Mojo's Minions dystrust's Avatar
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    Default Re: 2 lower wattage speakers vs higher wattage speakers?

    Quote Originally Posted by IMENATOR View Post
    This is what I suspected, speaker facing at your ears do sound different as facing at your feet.
    I've been putting my cabs on a stand since I switched from a 4x12 to a 2x12 or 1x12. You can get by with far less stage volume (and the inherent problems) if your cab isn't blasting your knees. You also hear what your amp / cab really sounds like instead of dialing it in ice pick bright due to listening off-axis.

    Quote Originally Posted by Adieu View Post
    Are you playing with a mildly overdriven honky oldskool Fender single coil or Gibson PAF sound?

    In that case, yeah, you can get some pretty nice "muddy cleans"... otherwise, hell no.

    One thing's for sure, H30 has a distinct flavor, and it ain't your goes-with-everything kind like ketchup or hot sauce
    My short answer is no, and I likewise disagree with your assessment of the H30's "flavor".

    When I was still using the '78 H30 4x12 my #1 was a Gibson Explorer loaded with a Custom / Jazz set, and I was playing through a Marshall Jubilee 2555. Anything from clean to hard rock / metal tones were just glorious. Like Jacew I've never really cared for V30s; IMO they sound like a honky, less full-sounding version of the H30. I dial in my sound with quite a bit of midrange, so I've never needed the extra push that V30s have. I could see how H30s might sound a bit boomy, scooped, and fizzy if you're used to mid-scooped Recto tones through V30s though.
    Quote Originally Posted by crusty philtrum View Post
    And that's probably because most people with electric guitars seem more interested in their own performance rather than the effect on the listener ... in fact i don't think many people who own electric guitars even give a poop about the effect on a listener. Which is why many people play electric guitars but very very few of them are actually musicians.

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    Ultimate Tone Slacker Jacew's Avatar
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    Default Re: 2 lower wattage speakers vs higher wattage speakers?

    Quote Originally Posted by dystrust View Post
    My short answer is no, and I likewise disagree with your assessment of the H30's "flavor".

    When I was still using the '78 H30 4x12 my #1 was a Gibson Explorer loaded with a Custom / Jazz set, and I was playing through a Marshall Jubilee 2555. Anything from clean to hard rock / metal tones were just glorious. Like Jacew I've never really cared for V30s; IMO they sound like a honky, less full-sounding version of the H30. I dial in my sound with quite a bit of midrange, so I've never needed the extra push that V30s have. I could see how H30s might sound a bit boomy, scooped, and fizzy if you're used to mid-scooped Recto tones through V30s though.
    +1

    One interesting thing with them is that mic'd they seem to sound best with mic almost dead center of the speaker.
    "So understand/Don't waste your time always searching for those wasted years/Face up, make your stand/And realize you're living in the golden years"
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