Barefaced Bass - Ultra lightweight high power bass guitar speaker cabinets

10CR power handling

As with all Barefaced bass cabs over the years (bar the '69er 6x10") our 10CR models can handle unusually high power levels without problems, giving you more output from a smaller rig. The 10CR250 driver is quite a special animal as it handles massive power and moves huge air like a PA subwoofer but has low moving mass and high sensitivity more akin to a guitar speaker. This means that we rate the power handling in two ways - power with clean sounds and power with any sound:

No. of 10CR speakers Cab / stack Max amp power (any tone) Max amp power (cleaner tones)
1 One10 250W 500W
2 Two10S 500W 800W
3 Two10S + One10 750W 1200W
4 Four10 1000W 1500W
6 Six10 1500W N/A
8 Eight10 2000W N/A

First point to note: We are not telling you that you can use an amp rated at these max power levels and never blow a speaker, whatever you do with it. However, we are telling you that you can use this much power and the cabs will handle it with no problem - as long as you turn down or reduce the lows IF YOU HEAR BAD SOUNDS. With clean tones (and sensible bandmates that let you hear yourself) you can use even more amp power with zero problems as long as you don't ignore bad sounds from the speakers.

Second point: You can use any mix of 10CR cabs to create a stack - it's the total number of drivers that matter to the power handling. However you have to make sure that the impedances are correct so all the speakers receive equal power. Please look at this page to check how the impedances work:

Third point: The power your amp will put out will depend upon the impedance of the stack. With a valve (tube) power amp you'll get the same power at all impedances (but it'll only be a few hundred watts at most, so you won't be worrying about power handling. With a solidstate power amp you'll get more power as the impedance decreases (because the amp puts out voltage, the lower the impedance the more current flows for a given voltage, and power equals voltage multiplied by current).

All power amps have a minimum impedance they can drive (below which the current becomes too high and melts things) and sometimes the max power doesn't increase (or even decreases) at the lowest rated impedances because the power supply can't keep up and the voltage drops. Check the impedance of the stack using the link above and compare it to the specs for your amp. 

12 ohm power ratings: If your amp is rated at 500W into 4 and 300W into 8 ohms then it'll produce about 200W into 12 ohms. If your amp is rated at 800W into 4 and 500W into 8 ohms then it'll produce about 300W into 12 ohms. Those ratios will be pretty consistent with any solidstate amp - you'll get about one third of the 4 ohm power into a 12 ohm load.

Switchable 2 ohm mode: Some solidstate amps use a switchable limiter to let them run down to 2 ohms without over-current issues. This limiter can be turned on (2 ohm mode) when running higher impedances, which halves the maximum power vs the normal 4/8 ohm modes. Examples of this are amps which are 1200W into 4/2 ohms or 800W into 8 ohms (but also 600W into 4 ohms and 400W into 8 ohms in 2 ohm mode). Or 800W into 4/2 ohms or 500W into 8 ohms (but also 400W into 4 ohms and 250W into 8 ohms in 2 ohm mode).

Valve (aka tube amps) put out roughly the same power into whatever load is attached by using an impedance matching transformer. It doesn't have to be a perfect match, 2:1 either way is fine. Valve amps put out much less true power than solidstate amps (the most powerful are only 300W - apart from a handful of very rare 400W+ amps) so power handling will only be a concern with a single One10.

If you're confused about any of this, email us and we'll help out!

The 10CR speaker has a big margin between the power level (or cone excursion) that creates obvious distortion and the power level that causes speaker damage. If your preferred tone is quite clean then it's much easier to hear these warning sounds, hence it's safer using an amp with lots of power - that's why we have the higher power rating.

If you're using distortion or other intense FX (particularly sub octaves and filters) then it's sensible to keep to the lower max amp power rating, simply because with FX pedals introducing distortion it'll be harder to hear the 10CR speakers making their "too much power!" distortion noise.

We haven't given the Six10 and Eight10 the "clean power" extra ratings because once you're putting 1500W+ into cabs this big you're crazy loud.