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Speaker for Blackstar HT-40?

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William Bradley
02/12/2018 4:49pm

There are so many suggestions/options of speakers I’m not really sure what to pull the trigger on. I have the blackstar mentioned in the title and I’m looking to upgrade the speaker. My bread and butter is hard rock like GnR, Morley crue, Van Halen, Alice In Chains etc... but also like to play some more classic rock like AC/DC, Jet, and that kinda thing. All opinions will be appreciated id consider all options in the British line up!

Narcoleptigon_47048
02/12/2018 8:46pm

I'd say for a single 12" open-back combo of that type, it comes down to a Retro 30, Reaper HP or Invader 50. The Vet 30 might be a bit dark for that amp. My instincts say go for the Retro 30. It should cover the most ground with the midrange clarity you'll hear on stage.

William Bradley
02/12/2018 10:53pm

It’s actually a closed back amp but I’ll look into all those that you suggested. Have definitely been considering the retro

Narcoleptigon_47048
02/13/2018 3:17am

Not open-back like the Mkll Club 40?. Maybe Vaughn has a better idea, but that might open up some choices. I figure the standard Reaper or Green Beret aren't best in an open cab. I compared the three I suggested in another thread pointing out that the Reaper HP can cover Jazz best of the three due to the "fast", yet less aggressive midrange, while the Invader is probably the least Jazzy. Someone compared the upper-mid resonance quality to a bamboo flute. I've used a clarinet analogy. IMHO, the Retro 30 is much like a V30 with a sweeter upper-mid quality due to the ~3kHz dip. The Invader is warm and "woody" in a sense with a smoother, yet more detailed high end than the GB, but that cone type never struck me as at all jazzy. The ET65 is always nice, but you might find it too smooth for the styles you play.

Narcoleptigon_47048
02/14/2018 12:30am

Reading your other posts, I would say the Invader 50 might be more to your liking and should work quite well in the amp. The Retro 30 has stronger 4~6kHz presence, which could easily be too bright if you prefer higher amp Presence settings. The Presence knob reduces the NFB on the amp section above ~3kHzn as it's increased. That allows the power tubes to overdrive more, and more smoothly near the clipping point, improving touch-sensitivity.

William Bradley
02/14/2018 8:12am

Yeah I’m definitetly looking at the invader as well. The amp doesn’t have a presence knob so wouldn’t have to worry about that too much.

Narcoleptigon_47048
02/14/2018 11:44pm

No Presence knob? Sacrilege! ;) I took some SPL analysis of the WGS clip demos of each speaker, using the most overdriven clips as references because all the added harmonics evenly fill in the high end. There are of course several factors influencing the result in each clip like whatever amp section high cut there is, as well as output transformer response and mic type/placement, but the Retro 30 looks to rise up to ~6dB stronger from 3-6kHz than the Invader 50.

IMHO, the Invader 50 has all the right classic G12M peaks and valleys above 2kHz: strong 2.3kHz peak for clarity in a mix, strong 3kHz dip to reduce the ice pick pierce, up again at 3.5~4.2kHz for some bell-like chime, and another smaller peak at 5.5kHz for some subtle harmonic detail not heard from a Celestion Heritage G12M. To me, it looks like a slightly sweeter sounding G12M-65 -- mainly from the higher centered 3.5kHz peak like the Reaper HP. I assume the "beefed up coil" means it's a tad tighter/less-boomy as well -- generally better for modern styles. It should have ~3dB more chime than the Rocket 50 or 70/80 with fuller mid-bass than the Rocket 50. Since there's no Presence knob on the HT40, the Retro 30 might require the Treble to be turned down a lot as not to sound too bright, which may then lack the bite and sustain for classic rock sounds. If you aren't concerned about Jazz or that later Hendrixy blues sound and Vaughn doesn't disagree, I'd say go Invader 50.