This is kinda long. Thanks for bearing with me.
I finally got my MC50 back, all serviced and ready to roll. Ran my also-new FYD TR preamp into the McI, and then the McI into my Avatar 1X12, into which I just put an NOS (not like an NOS - a true NOS) JBL E120. I plugged in and started experimented with many different combinations of preamp volume, preamp post-tone stack trim pot output, and McI power settings.
The positives: Holy crap is this rig f- loud! You folks who have posted here that an MC50's not powerful enough for your needs - where are you playing?! And the rig is dead silent. Really. So quiet that when I first plugged in, before I hit a chord, I thought something might be broken.
The negatives: The sound is not as "Jerryish" as I'd hoped it would be. In fact, I think I like my prior rig (SMS preamp into RV300 into 2X12 w/Weber NeoMag and Jensen Neo 12-100) better. At least I did when I A-B'd it with my new rig.
The problem seems to be focused around the high end and lower mids. The unit is not nearly as sparkly on top as I'd hoped. And while it sounds like it has plenty of upper mids, it seems to have even more lower mids that dominate the tone. Also, the tone, for lack of a better word, feels sterile and the response stiff.
When I get a chance (perhaps next weekend), I’m going to break down my two rigs, mix and match all the various components, and see what shakes down. But at first blush, I’m questioning the E120. All of the parts of the sound I’m getting that I don’t like remind me of when I bought a similarly-voiced aluminum dust cap Weber California some years back and why, after six months, I sold it.
It could be that the speaker needs some serious breaking in. It’s also been my experience, though, that breaking in a speaker doesn’t change its essential character. It just makes what you start with “better.” It could also be that I’m simply not driving the speaker at anywhere near the wattage it needs to shine, whether it's new or broken in. I don’t have enough experience with E120s to answer that but if correct, the JBL will have to go. I don’t play at crushing volumes anymore, even performing with my band.
Any thoughts or advice? Anyone find himself in a similar situation? How did you work through it? I’m open to any and all suggestions. Thanks, guys.
Last edited by Jon S.
on Sun May 05, 2013 7:09 am, edited 3 times in total.
"For me, I think the only danger is being too much in love with guitar playing. The music is the most important thing, and the guitar is only the instrument." Jerry Garcia