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Introducing the Retro Series from XiTone Cabs

MicFarlow

Experienced
Hi All,

We are pleased to introduce the first in a new line of cabs. These cabs are a first I think in that we are utilizing actual guitar speakers, with no tweeters... the way tube amp and guitar cabinet manufacturers have been doing it for decades.... literally from the beginning.

That's not to say us FRFR guys have been doing it wrong but we have been doing it different. Our favorite guitar cabs don't have tweeters (more accurately, there are no guitar cabs that have tweeters) and our favorite FRFR cabs do (more accurate to say all FRFR's have tweeters), but the FRFR cabs don't have guitar speakers.

Our modelers though, need a flat response speaker for very obvious reasons. Since guitar cabs aren't flat response in any form or fashion we have tended to use FRFR systems.... that have tweeters... that don't use guitar speakers.

We have sought to marry these two facets together and bring the best of the guitar cab world into the flat response world... at least flat response within the ability that any particular guitar speaker has the range to do so.

We also sought to eliminate as much as we could the dreaded beaming that has caused so much grief to those within it's path. The speaker grille utilized in the Retro Series has been tweaked to help prevent beaming from being an issue.

A major objective with this series is to bring back the FEEL of a guitar cab. There isn't a better way to do this than to use guitar speakers. In Mode 5, this cab is a V30 cab, straight up with a very flat amp pushing it.

This cab plays very well with and without IR's, even in the same amplifier mode. Mode 1 is Flat Response and we liked patches with and without IR's... no tweaking needed... or very little. We had patches that we could just toggle the IR on and off and we really liked it both ways with no changes needed at all. This obviously worked best with V30 based IR's but it wasn't limited to those either.

We decided to start with the Celestion Vintage 30. It's a popular speaker all around so we figured it'd be as good a place to start as any. We'll also do this in a wedge format and will add some other guitar speakers... like the Creamback, a Classic Lead 80 and the Neo Creamback for starters.

So, if what you want to hear can be created by a guitar speaker, then these cabs will do the trick. I know it may sound weird to say 'if what you want to hear can be created by a guitar speaker' but the reality of IR's and FRFR's have brought what we hear from our modelers more into the studio control room than standing in the room with the cabinet. Nothing wrong at all recreating what we hear in the control room but it is often rather different than what we hear in the room with the cab and the feel is certainly different.

So some pics:

image1.jpeg

image2.jpeg

image3.jpeg

image4.jpeg

I have some video I'll share a bit later if it turned out ok.

Thanks all!

Mick
 
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Patzag

Fractal Fanatic
What are the different modes? Is there a DSP "correction" that makes the V30 "flat" so it can use IRs?
 

yek

Moderator
Moderator
What are the different modes? Is there a DSP "correction" that makes the V30 "flat" so it can use IRs?
Yes, wondering about this too. Correction EQ maybe? Applying an EQ curve in the power amp that neutralizes the speaker's own curve.
 

chucma

Power User
Yes, wondering about this too. Correction EQ maybe? Applying an EQ curve in the power amp that neutralizes the speaker's own curve.
Wouldn't the speaker's curve change over different levels of volume though? So that the EQ curve would need to be dynamically responsive to the volume the amp it set at.
 

MicFarlow

Experienced
What are the different modes? Is there a DSP "correction" that makes the V30 "flat" so it can use IRs?
Here are the modes:

Mode 1 = V30 Flat Response within its natural range - Speaker grille on
Mode 2 = V30 Flat Response with extended range - Speaker grille on
Mode 3 = V30 Flat Response within its natural range - Speaker grille off
Mode 4 = V30 Flat Response with extended range - Speaker grille off
Mode 5 = V30 Raw

IF its a Xitone, its gonna be great! I think the FRFR wedge is absolutely amazing, I use it more than my monitors now! Good job mick
Thanks White Light! I appreciate your kind words.

Yes, wondering about this too. Correction EQ maybe? Applying an EQ curve in the power amp that neutralizes the speaker's own curve.
Yes, EQ correction to provide a flat response within its available frequency range... both it's natural range (how it reacts in the enclosure on its own) and some extended range. We also made the grille removeable in the event that you wanted the V30 to be a little more focused.

Wouldn't the speaker's curve change over different levels of volume though? So that the EQ curve would need to be dynamically responsive to the volume the amp it set at.
Not any more than any other type of speaker enclosure.
 

yek

Moderator
Moderator
Thanks Mick. Didn't realize that a speaker grille could have such an impact.
 

deathbyguitar

Experienced
I tested this speaker in Mick's shop a few weeks back (first person ever to play it! :grinning:) and I can tell you that this thing is the real deal. I was blown away by how even the sound dispersion was with the grill design. I've been saving my pennies and hopefully I can get one of these before the end of the year. C'mon Christmas bonus...
 

MicFarlow

Experienced
Thanks Mick. Didn't realize that a speaker grille could have such an impact.
You're welcome!

In most cases the speaker grille has a negligible impact on the frequency response and that is the case for my FRFR cabs for sure. In that case the grilles are as acoustically transparent as is possible.

That is a completely different story with regard to the Retro series. The grille in that cab is designed to negate to as large a degree as possible the beaming of a traditional guitar speaker. We achieved that goal but had to pay a small penalty... Mother Nature shall not be denied.

Even though the penalty was small it was something that I wanted to correct.

To that end the amp has 5 modes:

Mode 1 = V30 Flat response within its natural range - grille on
Mode 2 = V30 Flat response with extended range - grille on
Mode 3 = V30 Flat response within its natural range - grille off
Mode 4 = V30 Flat response with extended range - grille off
Mode 5 = Straight up V30

Hope this helps.

Thanks,

Mick
 

BBN

Fractal Fanatic
Hmmm....this is tough.
I have the cab above in my dirty little hands right now.
Just put it though some tests with my Axe III.
Hard to say if I like the raw 30 setting with no IR - or flat (with grill on) setting (and using an IR).
But the reality is - you don't really have to chose a favorite. They're both available at the push of a button.

Definitely sounds killer either way....and gets super loud (master volume on XiTone is only at 50%).

This is a VERY interesting option! Going to keep messing with this....
 

MicFarlow

Experienced
Hmmm....this is tough.
I have the cab above in my dirty little hands right now.
Just put it though some tests with my Axe III.
Hard to say if I like the raw 30 setting with no IR - or flat (with grill on) setting (and using an IR).
But the reality is - you don't really have to chose a favorite. They're both available at the push of a button.

Definitely sounds killer either way....and gets super loud (master volume on XiTone is only at 50%).

This is a VERY interesting option! Going to keep messing with this....
How about this....

Try Mode 1 with no IR's.... and Mode 5 with IR's. As counter intuitive as it sounds, we found very useful tones in both cases during our testing. Not very useful in a gig situation where direct to FoH is a factor but fun to mess around with... course you could always mic it up though.

In thinking about that a little more... the above makes this cab really unique... it can be a flat response system or it can also be a contributor of sorts to your tone, much like a traditional guitar cab. You can use the amps pass-through to go to FoH for going direct or you can literally just put a mic on it, like sound guys have been doing from the beginning.

Interestingly enough, the next speaker model has been chosen to add to the Retro Series line... stay tuned. :cool:
 
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