The Bass-ment

Low B…31 Hz


The Low A on a piano is 27.5 Hz.

Both tough notes to reproduce and amplify...

Any suggestions on Speakers and Amps best used with the Low B heard on a 5-string Electric Bass?


Ampeg SVT. Also look into PA gear. It's made to reproduce a lower freq response than bass amp. Lots of bassists go straight to PA.


The Speakers are the trick, most would be flabby...researching that right now, and closed-back enclosures, too.

Nearly all speakers can do a 41hz Low E, ... closed-back almost mandatory.


EV (Electro voice) makes the 30W---a 30" diameter subwoofer that goes down to 15 Hz. There are quite a few 18" subs on the market as well. Mainly, it takes wattage, speaker diameter, and cone excursion to produce massive amounts of low end. A speaker is literally an extremely accurate linear motor driven air pump. It won't work well with an open back cab. Sealed cab, ported bass reflex, or some horn variant is what you'll need.


Well, another couple days of research and thought...seems there are those catering to the Low B market, just way out of my need, skill set, and desire to spend.

At least not, yet!

So, in the interim, I am going to close-back my Jensen C15N, which curiously enough was the "vibe" speaker in the B15N PortoFlex back in the day. That cabinet was something else...and you can get a perfect reproduction from FlipTops.

I had an early 60's B15N while in Jr. High and HS. About 10 years ago I saw it for sale on Gruhn's website, ... that was wild.

I even called...


Fearless/fearful, Barefaced etc... not cheap.


That said, the main use of a fiver is easier fingering (less up and down the neck hand movements), not necessarily hitting that low B every other note...


B15N's came with a CTS speaker with a square ceramic magnet. A JBL D-140 was an option, but the cabinets were ported differently for the JBL. B15N cabinets were ported reflex cabinets. The ports are the four slots in the baffle, on each side of the speaker. You can see one of the slots in this photo.


The CTS came in 1965, replacing the C15N, which replaced the P15N before it. JBL130 an option before the CTS change. The double baffle switched back to a single baffle in 1966.

Constantly changing, the 1961-64 era initiated the light up logo and had the crazy tilt back leg!

That's the one I had...with checkered vinyl ('62-'64) not the random flair tolex ('61-'62). It had the XLR plug, too. B-15NC, 1964 ???

The most road worn piece of gear I ever acquired...


You can go all the way to C0 on some pianos. That’s 16.352 Hz. If you ever get a chance to hear or play a Bösendorfer 290 do it. The low keys on extended pianos (the 290 has 97 keys) are black.

Not sure I’ve ever heard one mic’d before. I’ve always been in the same room so not sure how those notes get captured and played through any kind of amplification.


New order placed on MojoTone.

I have had their standard Extension Cab now for 10 years, really well made. They offer the closed-back panel as an option, ... back in the day I had it made like an open-back Fender.

I did receive my Acoustic Foam yesterday, and jury-rigged it in...big difference. I like it with guitar, too. This 15" C15N cabinet was always intended to better handle the low end.

So, eventually I will have another gear permutation to go along with my 40W SS Head/LR Baggs Combo and 35W Fender CVR...

I have been looking at smaller wattage Bass Heads, but no sense buying something, yet, or something not as worthy as what I have already.

Ampeg came out with a pair of updated 20 and 50 Watt FlipTop tube heads recently, ... those are curious. It might also be fun to make one...I need to look at what kits are out there.


This may be a stupid question but what good is it to record at these low Hz ratings if they can only be heard on special sized speakers? I don't have those speakers in my car or at home on my stereo.


Very true...which is why "Mastering" is so important to recordings. They need to sound good through whatever the Listener has for playback...HiFi or Ear Buds....

I remember a funny MTV clip where Snoop Dog was handed a cassette... straight into the Boom Box at the side of his desk. It sounded horrible, but that was the target users gear.


But, in a live setting, reproducing the lower notes well can be "felt". And all the overtones are better, too. Those make it into the Mastered final product.

EDIT: When The Who started touring Quadrophenia at lower volume in 1989 to save Pete's hearing, they had to add a horn section as Entwistle's Bass was turned down such that there weren't enough overtones!


You can go all the way to C0 on some pianos. That’s 16.352 Hz. If you ever get a chance to hear or play a Bösendorfer 290 do it. The low keys on extended pianos (the 290 has 97 keys) are black.

Not sure I’ve ever heard one mic’d before. I’ve always been in the same room so not sure how those notes get captured and played through any kind of amplification.

– absaroke

Our theaters have a pair of Bosendorfer 290s. Playing the bottom end is a thrill. Bosendorfers are crisp all the way down. Yes, they can be miked, and a good PA can reproduce that rich bottom end. We used Crown PZMs taped to the bottom of the lid, among other systems. Low end keys were normal colors.

Pipe organs, and their electronic counterparts, also go down to 16 Hz, as do synths. We had 16' long bass horns for the electronic organ in our theater. You could feel the low end 300' away in the projection booth. In "2001: A Space Odyssey", the "Also Sprach Zarathustra" piece has a 16 Hz organ note prominently in it. Virgil Fox used a "portable" Allen classical organ with bass horns that took up a semi trailer. Bass drums are also a interesting to mike and reproduce as they can easily go down to 4Hz due to the complex patterns of bass drum heads.

My Klipsch Cornwalls (15" woofers) can faithfully reproduce that bass. I doubt that there's any Bluetooth speakers that'll even come close to matching that. Bass takes speaker and cab size, and wattage to move that much air.


My Closed-back panel arrived, now with Acoustic Foam mounted. I added a second layer directly behind the driver. Side, Top, and Bottom as well.

Now to figure my mounting screw pattern...

I have been playing the Electric Bass through the LR Baggs Para DI and my SS Chip Amp Head without the panel fully secure...getting a little rumble.


So much better...

Using the CVR Tube Amp sounds great, too, I was happily NOT surprised!

All my gear is based around 35-40 Watts, 4 ohms.

I'll add another Acoustic Foam square directly behind the driver centerline soon enough.


Looks innocuous enough to me, but I'm no expert.


I left off the crossmark bullseye...Ha!

Used 10 screws to secure the new Closed-back panel on.

Everything sounds great at mid-volume, no idea about a more fully open space where everything could be cranked up a bit more. The Indoor reverberation factor in the Music Room is beyond my current ability to quantify.

Right now at 41hz, normal Electric strings and set-up. Both the CVR and SS ChipAmp are worthy, liking the SS more so due to the EQ flexibility...crisp, cleaner. Been going back and forth between the two to find the settings I like.


I've seen diagonal wood braces as well as circular speaker cutouts on back panels. Anything to break up the flat panel and stiffen it up helps. Insulation---aka damping material---is a must. Yours is nicely done.


I need a bigger space to go louder...~27ft for 41hz, ~36ft for 31hz.

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