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DB Bass Elbee 10, Embee 12, and Embee 1210 Series II Cabinets review

Lightweight with a high power-to-volume ratio, the DB Bass cabinet lineup is here to refresh your backline options

  • £395+
(Image: © Future)

Our Verdict

With a clever design and a solid yet lightweight build, these DB Bass cabinets offer a big bass performance with an abundance of thunder, in proportions that won't hog the stage or the van.

Pros

  • Lightweight and compact.
  • Solid build with angled handles for easy lifting.
  • Big, resonant and powerful bass performance.

Cons

  • Nothing.

What is it?

Here's a sales pitch for you: buy one of these new bass cabinets from Dave Blundy's company, DB Bass, and your knuckles will thank you. You might even save money on Savlon.

Well, fewer scraped knuckles are just one of the benefits that DB Bass promises you should you incorporate one of these newly design Series II cabinets in your backline. But in terms of making a physical claim on your brand loyalty, DB Bass is ultimately aiming for our ears, with a performance that promises a watertight low-end and a power that belies the cabinet's size.

Here we are looking at three options.

There is the Elbee 10, which comes outfitted with a 10" FaitalPRO Neodymium speaker that makes it an option for small gigs or the rehearsal pad. Then we've got the Embee 12, which has a 12" FairalPRO Neodymium speaker and piezo tweeter with attenuator. Finally, we come to the Embee 1210, which, as the name suggests, houses 10" and a 12" FaitalPRO Neodymium speakers and has a coaxial tweeter with attenuator.

Each option promises plenty of power with a relatively small footprint. The key here is that these cabinets strike a balance between portability and power, between the low end definition and mid to upper-midrange clarity – highs you can use.

Performance and Verdict

All of the cabinets are constructed from lightweight, void-free birch plywood, with angled handles to make hoisting them up the stairs a little bit more forgiving, and steel grille covers to protect them should they fall down the stairs.

Altogether, the build is quality, from the speaker right down to the pair of quality Neutrik Speakon sockets that are housed in the rear of the cabinets.

We tested the cabinets using an Aguilar TH700 amp and toggled between active and passive basses, and started with the compact little 1x10. Check out the picture below for scale. 

(Image credit: DB Bass)

At 10.4kg, the Elbee 10 is very manageable, but despite its compact frame it projects a serious amount of volume, with plenty of concrete in the lower bass frequencies. We threw it in at the deep end with an active five-string, and it held the line when it came to the low B, complementing it with a taut midrange performance that brought out all the nuances in our playing.

It handles drive well, too. Will it handle gigs? As ever, the answer to that question is contingent on what type of band you are and what size of venue you are playing. Certainly it should cover a small gig so long as your drummer isn't Animal from the Muppet Show.

(Image credit: DB Bass)

What struck us about the Embee 12 is the definition in the high frequencies. There is a wonderful balance to its voice, with the piezo tweeter really adding a little pixie dust on the mix. That said, it is quite an effervescent tone, mother's milk to slap players, maybe less so for the pluckers. Finding the sweet spot, though, is just a matter of EQ.

Where things get really interesting is when you partner the Embee 12 with the Elbee 10, and you get the wide open frequency range and a three-dimensional performance that feels like such a luxury in this day and age.

Also consider...

(Image credit: Future)

Bergantino HDN212 cabinet
e top end response is particularly pleasing: adjusting the tweeter offers several choices, from clear definition with tonal body to glassy percussive presence. At no point does the treble response sound weak, brittle or harsh. 

Trickfish FT-112 cabinet
The TF-112 handles power admirably, with a considerable amount of projection. The high-frequency driver – a conical horn design – adds a lovely bit of articulation should you need it. It's an excellent cabinet.

Is this what the Embee 1210 is attempting all in a single enclosure? It seems that way, and while we love the spread of having a two-cabinet setup the breadth and depth of the Embee 1210's sound is simply astonishing. The top end definition is incredible, without ever getting all poke-in-the-ear about it. 

These DB Bass Embee cabinets use the company's Max-Flow system in which the drivers are set at an angle to project more volume, more bass, more everything without having to upsize the cabinet. It'll help keep your backline in order. It might even help your back too. 

MusicRadar verdict: With a clever design and a solid yet lightweight build, these DB Bass cabinets offer a big bass performance with an abundance of thunder, in proportions that won't hog the stage or the van.

The web says

"Ok, [the Elbee 10*] not going to fill a huge room alone but it is plenty punchy enough to act as an excellent monitor on stage for those larger venues. The fact that I can link my RS210 to it via another Speakon when required… well there’s the larger venues taken care of!"
Jay Garrett, GadgetyNews.com
[*reviewing the MkI cabinet]

Hands-on demos

DB Bass

Specifications

  • Price: Elbee 10 £395, Embee 12 £595, Embee 1210 £795
  • Made In: UK 
  • Power: 500, 600, 750 watts RMS Impedance 4 ohm (8 and 16 ohm available), 4 ohm (8 ohm available), 4 ohm 
  • Frequency Response: 60Hz-4kHz, 45Hz-30kHz, 45Hz-20kHz Speakers : 1x10” FaitalPRO (Neodymium) driver; 1x12” FaitalPRO (Neodymium) driver, piezo with attenuator; 1x10” and 1x12” FaitalPRO (Neodymium) drivers 
  • Connections: 2 x Neutrik Speakon 
  • Dimensions: 415mm / 16.3” (H) x 295mm / 11.6” (W) x 345mm / 13.6” (D), 462mm / 18.2” (H) x 375mm / 14.8” (W) x 455mm / 17.9” (D), 610mm / 24” (H) x 375mm / 14.8” (W) x 455mm / 17.9” (D) 
  • Weight: 10.4kg (22.92 lbs), 17kg (37.48 lbs), 23.8kg (52.47 lbs)
  • Contact: DB Bass