Guitar Speaker Cabinet Roundup
To help you find the best guitar speaker cabinet for your rig, we present you with the most sought after and best selling models available.
Aside from considering speakers that match the technical specifications of your amplifier, you also have to consider the size and number of speakers and the type of baffle used. When it comes to size, the smaller speakers are expected to provide better sonic clarity while lacking power. On the other hand, bigger speakers sacrifice some of the frequencies for more power and volume.
Cabinets with a single speaker are still the go-to format for many because it is straight forward and affordable. More complex and powerful configurations are also available from two speaker format to the incredibly loud four speaker format. Multi-speaker cabinets allow for stereo setups and better sound dispersion.
Picking between "Closed Back" and open back design is another important decision to make. Most of the guitar speaker cabinets made today have a closed back design, meaning the back of the cabinet is totally sealed off. This allows for a tighter and more focused sound that jumps straight at the front, and it emphasizes the lower frequencies better. "Open Back" design is popular among combo amps, but not much so with cabinets. By leaving the back open or ported, open back cabinets give your guitar a more airy and natural sound. This results in a more transparent and clear sound while not having the same reach as closed back cabinets. Now that you know the basics, we have rounded up the best guitar speaker cabinets for your convenience.
The Bugera 212V-BK is heaven sent for many weekend warriors and experienced pros, it combines quality craftsmanship and electronics into a package that is surprisingly affordable. This closed back guitar cab is designed to complement Bugera's line of tube amp heads, but it will also work with most of the conventional amp heads in the market. The cab houses two 12" speakers, a configuration that continues to be the favorite of working musicians because it provides just enough volume for small to medium sized venues while retaining tone clarity and details. Finally, the 212V-BK is tank tough, with no unwanted rattling or vibration. You can use the amp in either 140-Watt, 4/16-Ohm mono or 2 x 70-Watt, 8-Ohm stereo configuration. Retail Price: $196.99. Get the latest price & reviews at Amazon.com.
Hands down, Marshall is still the most popular and sought after guitar speaker cabinet manufacturer, especially when it comes to close cabinet design. The famous wall of Marshall cabs continue to be a staple in rock events and major concerts, and it continues to fuel aspiring guitarists to work hard for their dream rig. The Marshall 1960AV Vintage speaker cabinet keeps their reputation up, featuring four G12 Vintage 70 watt speakers that produces classic rock tones. The cab is also modernized with the addition of an impedance (4 or 16 ohm) mono/stereo switching mechanism. The first 4x12 cab was designed and built by Jim Marshall in 1962 and this design continues to be the standard by which others follow. Retail Price: $1199.99. Get the latest price & reviews at Amazon.com.
The closed back 4x12 cabinet has become a staple in rock music, and consequently manufacturers that offer this type of configuration do so at back breaking prices. Thankfully, there are manufacturers like VHT that offer quality 4x12 cabinets at a reasonable price without sacrificing quality. The VHT 412CEL features an all-birch plywood cabinet with an airtight sealed jack plate that will not leak any air for true close back performance. It is equipped with four 12” Celestion Vintage 30 16-ohm speakers. Other features include a stereo/mono switch for either 4- or 16- ohm mono operation or 8-ohms per side stereo operation. Retail Price: $573.42. Get the latest price & reviews at Amazon.com.
There are only a few extension cabinets available in open back format, thankfully the ones that are available are reputable and well built. Among them, the VHT Special 6 212 is highly recommended with its tank tough construction and great sound. This cabinet has an open back baffle solidly built using birch plywood, and it houses two Celestion G12H 30 speakers that are known for warm vintage tones. Much like most modern speakers, the Special 6 212 cabinet comes with a stereo/mono switch with isolated ground paths in stereo mode to eliminate hum issues. It also helps that the cabinet looks good and it comes with a handy leather handle. If you are looking for a good open back amp for your tube amp head or for expanding on your combo, this is a nice deal. Retail Price: $488.56. Get the latest price & reviews at Amazon.com.
The Vox V112NT is an elegant looking cabinet specifically designed for the popular Vox Night Train amp head. Although it was meant for immediate connectivity with the Night Train, this cabinet works well with other amplifiers and it comes at a very reasonable price. The front panel has a retro appeal, thanks to its black-out wrap with a black-on-black fret cloth, rounded off with a white trim. The cab's classic looks is matched by its vintage voicing, featuring a 12" Greenback Celestion 16 Ohm speaker that blends well with the cabinet's open back design. Retail Price: $249.99. Get the latest price & reviews at Amazon.com.
As you play bigger venues, getting a good expansion cabinet becomes an important requirement. Aside from increasing your volume, these cabinets can also do wonders to your tone. The flashy looking GS112VE is a good example, designed to be an extension cabinet for combo amps or amp heads - housing a 12" Celestion Seventy 80 driver that provides the extra sound dispersion that you need, with 75 Watts RMS handling. This British looking cab comes wrapped in a black basket weave vinyl covering, featuring a black and grey speaker grille with white piping. Other features include rugged leather handles and chromed finished corners. Retail Price: $249. Get the latest price & reviews at Amazon.com
This cabinet is proof that you don't need bulky and heavy speakers to get the Orange tone. The PPC108 measures in at just 10" across and is designed to work with the equally petite MicroTerror guitar amp head. This affordable guitar speaker has all the makings its big brothers, including the distinctive Orange tolex look. The cabinet comes with 1/4in TRS inputs on the back and it has an 8" speaker ideal for small tube amp heads, it has a power handling rating of 20 Watts and an 8 ohm impedance. If you are looking to build a practice without compromising tube tone, you should check this one out. Retail Price: $89.99. Get the latest price & reviews at Amazon.com.
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