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Shoot-Out at The Super Reverb Corral!

by vaughn skow February 22, 2011 2 min read

Hi fellow tone junkies!  This week I’m doing another great speaker shoot-out involving the WGS Veteran 10.  I’ve been hearing from amp and cabinet builders out there how amazing these diminutive little transducers are in 4x10 cabinets and combos, and I wanted to thoroughly investigate the claims.  The benchmark tone is my beloved ’67 Blackface Super Reverb Amp with its original CTS Alnico speakers.  Going up against the grand old gal is a modern Fender Super Reverb Repro Amp; first with the factory Jensen P10R Alnicotens, and then with a quartet of WGS Veteran 10s.  I know, this is kind of like Sampson going up against Goliath, but you all remember how that story ended, right?? So, anyway,read on for the results!

For this test I went to my buddy Todd Tillemans, who owns Anything Audio in the Nashville area.  Todd makes his living installing sound systems, refurbishing and re-coning vintage Tannoy monitors, and well, doing anything related to audio.  In his spare time he collects cool vintage guitars, basses, and amps.  I knew he had a Super Reverb repro sitting there, so I thought it would be a perfect opportunity to do a little A/B comparison.  Todd and I had already compared the repro Super to my ’67 model, and we came to an agreement that the original sounded a lot bigger and warmer on the bottom end and had a much smoother top end, while also offering a larger and more open soundstage.  Since the repro’s circuitry is in fact nearly an exact copy of the originals (aside from the PC board construction, of course), we felt fairly certain that the speakers were largely responsible for the tonal difference. 

I’ve been hearing from builders that the WGS Vet 10’s sound warm and "vintage" right out of the box, so Todd and I were eager to see if they could warm and soften up the Super Reverb Repro - you know a little less ice-pick, and a little more sweetness.  We did take the time to video our tests, but just in case you don’t want to take the time to watch the two-part video series; here is the synopsis:

Yes, the WGS Vet 10’s did in fact bring the tone of the Repro Super closer to the tone of the ’67 original.  Was it 100% there?  No, but the amazing thing is that those WGS Vet 10’s did produce a very notable tonal improvement over the stock Italian made Alnico Jensen P10R’s ... which cost more than twice as much as the WGS speakers.  Give the Veteran 10s a little break-in time and they’ll probably close the gap even more.  That’s some cool stuff; the fact that the WGS speakers were made in the same town, and on some of the same equipment as those glorious CTS speakers in my ’67 Super, well, that’s just icing on the cake!

Now, on to the videos!  First, the ’67 Super Reverb Amp up against the Repro with its factory Jensen P10R speakers:

And then The ’67 against the Repro with the GS Vet tens:

So, you all be the judge!

Until next time,  -Vaughn-

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