10/01/2017

1940s/2017 Speaker Cab Isolation Box





Mr. Phil, who traded this record-player-toting box with me, is going to hunt me down after seeing what I've done to this. I did save the guts, though, and plan to put the player into a smaller, open-top box with a better (than original) speaker. I couldn't resist the red-covered ply box for this project, however. I'm sorry, Phil!

I'm always looking for a good "silent" solution for recording (and playing-out) electric instruments. Recently I've been using the direct-out from my Vox MV50 for electric at live events and I like it a lot for clean to mildly-broken-up sounds, though once it gets pushed into a driven sound, the direct-out can get a more modern, compressed sound to it -- something that it doesn't do when it's hooked-up to a speaker cab as normal.

So, rather than record sound clips and album material through that, I've been using my 4w Vox AC4TV in its RCA cab with a speaker in front of it. I love the sound (and the step-down wattages) of this amp/cab combo but, ya know, it can get still get distractingly-loud for family and customers. 

Since said amp has a speaker-out jack, I figured why not put the old Jensen/RCA speaker from it that I like so much into its own isolation box and record that? Well, that's what this red box is. The soundclip above was made in 1w and 1/4w modes with my ironing board lap steel -- and while it's not 100% as "open-sounding" as in the original clip for the instrument (where I'm playing it cleaner and with fingerpicks, anyway), I think it sounds faithful. With this setup, the physical noise of the electric instruments themselves is louder than what's escaping the box, too.

Anyhow, hopefully this is an idea for you folks who need to do it quiet but don't want to have to get into load-boxes, speaker emulators, and other expensive gizmos -- or build a bulky, giant isolation box for a whole amplifier.




This embellishment was unnecessary but I had to do it. 


The old turntable's motor-mount opening gave just enough airspace to mic the 10" vintage Jensen speaker just the way I like it.



This upcycled foam completely covers the interior space below the speaker, too.

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