Best Space Saving Speaker Cabs
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Gear Guitar Amplifiers

10 Great Space-Saving Speaker Cabinets For Guitarists

When most people think of speaker cabinets, they tend to think of huge 4×12” cabinets – or full stacks.

But the unfortunate truth is that while they sound great, they take up a hell of a lot of room.

Whether you’re a gigging guitarist or you play at home – you may find yourself limited on space.

So, in this post, I’ve put together a list of some of the best space-saving speaker cabinets. Covering a range of different configurations (1×12” and 2×12”), tones and price points.

Let’s dive in:

The best space-saving speaker cabinets for guitarists

Before we dive into the list, it’s worth mentioning that you should always check the ohms rating and wattage that your amp is rated for.

To make it easier to find a speaker cab that matches up, I’ve included this information in the specs for each cab below.  

1. Barefaced Reformer 112

Barefaced Reformer 112
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Barefaced Reformer 112

You may not have heard of Barefaced Audio before but they’ve earned the top spot on this list because they build the best speaker cabs I’ve ever heard.

This is the only speaker cab I’ve heard that immediately made me consider selling all other cabs.

Why? Well, Barefaced have changed everything with a special diffractor design that utilises both sides of the speaker cone. This means that you get the output level of a 2×12″ cab from a 1×12″ cab.

And it allows the sound to fill the room so you don’t have to have the speaker pointing at your ear in order to enjoy the tone.

What’s more is that these cabs are built to order by a team in the UK. You can choose different tolex, grills, speakers. I went for the stock model with the vintage 30 but they have plenty of other speakers to choose from which include the super lightweight neo speaker.

There are also 1×10″ or a 2×12″ versions available. Lead time can vary, for me it was around 3-4 weeks but shipping to USA/UK is usually next day.

The Barefaced Reformer 112 is the best money I’ve ever spent on a speaker cab. No regrets.

Specification:

  • Configuration – 1×12” open back with a unique diffractor design
  • Speaker type – Celestion Vintage 30 as standard (you can choose others)
  • Ohms rating – 8 ohms
  • Wattage – 60 watts as standard
  • Connections – 2x ¼” Jack + speakon sockets
  • Weight – 22lbs (10kg) or lighter if you opt for a neo speaker
  • Size – 16 x 18 x 12inches (400mm x 450mm x 310mm)

2. Fender Super Champ SC112

Fender Super Champ SC112
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Fender Super Champ SC112

Fender is a brand that needs no introduction. While they may be best known for their vintage styled guitars and combo amps, they make speaker heads and matching cabinets.

The SC112 in particular is designed to match their Super Champ X2 amp head, but it would be a great fit for plenty of other amp heads.

The Celestion G12P-80 speaker ensures you get a crisp sound with a well-controlled low-end. The closed back helps to improve bass response. It’s versatile and has plenty of character, without breaking the bank.

And since it’s made out of MDF, it’s very light. Perfect if you want to avoid injuring your back.

Specification:

  • Configuration – 1×12” closed back
  • Speaker type – Celestion G12P-80
  • Ohms rating – 8 ohms
  • Wattage – 80 watts
  • Connections – 1x ¼” Jack socket
  • Weight – 15lbs (6.8kg)
  • Size – 18 x 10 x 18 inches (457.2mm x 254mm x 457.2mm)

3. Bugera 112TS

Bugera 112TS
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Bugera 112TS

Bugera are one of the lesser known brands on this list. That said, they’ve made a name for themselves in the amp world for making budget gear that sounds far better than its price tag would suggest.

And this speaker cabinet is no exception. It’s capable of tight lows and articulate highs.

It’s fairly light, although not the lightest on this list. For the money, you really can’t get better than this.

Specification:

  • Configuration – 1×12” closed back
  • Speaker type – Turbosound
  • Ohms rating – 8 ohms
  • Wattage – 80 watts
  • Connections – 2x ¼” Jack sockets
  • Weight – 29.3lbs (13.3kg)
  • Size – 17.52 x 10.83 x 18.39 inches (445mm x 275mm x 467mm)

Buy from:

Other versions available:

  • 2×12” horizontal cabinet

4. Marshall MX112

Marshall MX112
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Marshall MX112

Like Fender, Marshall is another one of those brands that even people outside of the music biz recognize.

This cab comes in the typical Marshall black tolex. Which is a perfect fit for their DSL20C or DSL20H amplifiers.

It’s sturdy and well made. From a tonal perspective, you can expect a strong mid-range with punchy highs and tight lows.

While this cabinet is on the pricier side, it’s still a great option for anyone wanting a speaker cab that doesn’t take up much room.

Specification:

  • Configuration – 1×12” closed back
  • Speaker type – Celestion Seventy 80 speaker
  • Ohms rating – 16 ohms
  • Wattage – 80 watts
  • Connections – 1x ¼” Jack socket
  • Weight – 29.7lbs (13.5kg)
  • Size – 19.68 x 18.5 x 11.41 inches (500mm x 470mm x 290mm)

Other versions available:

  • Available as a 2×12” cabinet (160 watts at 8 ohms)

5. Orange PPC-212 (Horizontal)

Orange PPC-212 (Horizontal)
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Orange PPC-212 (Horizontal)

Orange have been a mainstay in the rock world and it’s easy to see why given the quality of their gear.

Founded in 1968, they’ve attracted plenty of big names. Everyone from Jimmy Page (Led Zep) and Billy Gibbons (ZZ Top) to Jim Root (Slipknot) and Brian “Head” Welch (Korn) have played their gear.

The Celestion Vintage 30 speaker provides a tight and responsive sound, with excellent projection. And the typical orange color will get you noticed, for sure.

One feature unique to orange is their “skid runners”. This black bar, attached to the bottom of the cab, attaches your cabinet to the bottom of the stage to improve low-end response.

This 2×12” cabinet is in a horizontal configuration. While vertical cabinets are great if you’re limited on width (we’ll talk more about these in a moment), full-size head amplifiers don’t sit on them comfortable.

That isn’t an issue with the horizontal cab. Meaning you can capitalize on the height and stack a bunch of head amps on top of each other.  

Specification:

  • Configuration – 2×12” closed back (horizontal).
  • Speaker type – Celestion Vintage 30
  • Ohms rating – 16 ohms
  • Wattage – 120 watts (mono)
  • Connections – 2x ¼” Jack sockets
  • Weight – 61.72lbs (28kg)
  • Size – 21.65 x 17.72 x 11.42 Inches (530mm x 780mm x 380mm)

Other versions available:

  • If you’re not a fan of the color, this is cab is available in black.
  • Available as a 1×12” version.
  • Available as an open back version (dimensions are slightly smaller).

6. Marshall MX212A

Marshall MX212A
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Marshall MX212A

The Marshall MX212A is a vertical slanted cabinet, with a similar spec to the previously mentioned MX112 (aside from the difference in impediance/ohms).

Thanks to the top half of the MX212A being slanted, you get more projection which means the sound it fills the room more. The speaker is aimed more at your ears and capable of plenty of low-end.

It’s fairly light and has the addition of side handles so it’s far easier than lugging a heavy 4×12” around.

And the best part is that it’s the most cost effective 2×12” cabinet I’ve found so far.

Specification:

  • Configuration – Vertical slanted 2×12”
  • Speaker type – Celestion Seventy 80
  • Ohms rating – 8 ohms
  • Wattage – 160 watts
  • Connections – 1x ¼” Jack socket
  • Weight – 43.98lbs (19.95kg)
  • Size – 20 x 12.5 x 20.25 inches (508mm x 317mm x 514mm)

Buy from:

Other versions available:

  • Available as a horizontal 2×12” cabinet.

7. Orange PPC212V

Orange PPC212V
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Orange PPC212V

In at number 5, we have another Orange cab. This time in a vertical configuration – perfect for saving space on the floor.

But this isn’t just a 2×12” version of the Orange PPC112 I mentioned earlier. There’s a good reason why I’ve listed this separately.

There are some significant differences. First of all, it uses Celestion Neo Creamback speakers. These are lighter and have a different frequency response (tone) to the Vintage 30’s in the PPC112.

For example, the Vintage 30 speaker has more mids and the Neo Creamback has a slightly mid-scooped sort of sound.

However, similar to the PPC112, the PPC212V is sturdily built and comes with those useful “skid runners” to attach the cab to the floor of the stage and improve low-end response.

Specification:

  • Configuration – Vertical 2×12”
  • Speaker type – Celestion Neo Creamback
  • Ohms rating – 16 ohms
  • Wattage – 120 watts
  • Connections – 2x Parallel ¼” Jack sockets
  • Weight – 43.98lbs (19.95kg)
  • Size – 21.46 x 27.56 x 11.81 inches (545mm x 700mm x 300mm)

8. Victory V212-VG

Victory V212-VG
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Victory V212-VG

Victory make damn fine guitar amps, and equally high quality speaker cabinets.

They’re built in England and played by the likes of Richie Kotzen, Graham Coxon (of Blur fame) and, Guthrie Govan.

The V212-VG is a vertical 2×12” cabinet that’s designed to go with their VX The Kraken amplifier (one of my favorite amps for metal). But it is available in a few other colors.

I’m a huge fan of vertical 2×12” cabinets because they save a lot of floor space. And unlike most cabs, the speaker is angled backwards slightly for better projection.

This cab offers, as Victory put it; “clear highs, projecting upper mids and strong bottom end.”

It’s somewhat heavier than the Orange PPC212V mentioned previously and a similar price as it happens, but I dig the sound of the Celestion Vintage 30 speakers and it matches my amp.

Specification:

  • Configuration – Vertical 2×12” with closed back
  • Speaker type – Celestion Vintage 30
  • Ohms rating – 16 ohms
  • Wattage – 120 watts
  • Connections – ¼” Jack input and ¼” Jack link socket
  • Weight – 50.7Ibs (23kg)
  • Size – 485mm x 700mm x 295mm (19.09 x 27.55 x 11.61 inches)

Other versions available:

  • Available in red (V212-VR) and black (V212-VV). A white vertical cab (V212-VCD) is also available with leather corners & handle. The white version has a different speaker; Celestion G12M-65 Creamback.

9. Matrix Amplification Neolight NL12

Matrix Amplification Neolight NL12
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Matrix Amplification Neolight NL12

Matrix Amplification may be one of the lesser known brands on this list, but don’t hold that against them.

They make seriously good gear. And their Neolight NL12 cabinet is no exception.

And while this may be a 1×12” cabinet, it doesn’t sound like it. Thanks to the front-facing bass port, this little cab sounds bigger than a 2×12”. It packs a serious amount of low end, while remaining clear.

The NL12 is seriously light. One of the lightest on this list, partly thanks to its Celestion G12 Neo Creamback speaker.

Specification:

  • Configuration – 1×12” closed back
  • Speaker type – Celestion G12 Neo Creamback
  • Ohms rating – 16 ohms
  • Wattage – 60 watts
  • Connections – 1x ¼” Jack/speakon socket
  • Weight – 16.97lbs (7.7kg)
  • Size – 15.74 x 11.8 x 17.91 inches (400mm x 300mm x 455mm)

Other versions available:

  • Available with 8 ohms instead of the standard 16. A horizontal 2×12” cabinet is also available (NL212) which supports 16 ohms and 8 ohms in the same unit.

10. Victory V112C

Victory V112C
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Victory V112C

The V112C from Victory Amplification is a compact 1×12” speaker cabinet.

It uses similar construction to the 2×12” we mentioned previously, but there are a few key differences.

This cabinet is open backed which gives it more of a natural, ‘room filling’ quality to your tone. And a looser low-end.

And the Celestion G12M-65 speaker offers a vintage, woody tone.

Victory do say that this cab is perfect for anyone who likes classic low/medium gain tones. But I’ve dialed in plenty of gain through this cabinet so I can tell you that it will sound good at high gain.

That said, if blisteringly high amounts of gain is your bag, you’d probably be better off with the V112-V which comes loaded with a Vintage 30 speaker.

Specification:

  • Configuration – 1×12” open back
  • Speaker type – Celestion G12M-65 Creamback
  • Ohms rating – 16 ohms
  • Wattage – 65 watts
  • Connections – ¼” Jack input and ¼” Jack link socket
  • Weight – 29.5lbs (13.3kg)
  • Size – (425mm x 465mm x 255mm)

Other versions available:

  • Available in black with the same spec’s (V112-CB). Also a black version is available with Celestion Vintage 30 speaker (V112-V) which have different tonal characteristics.

Conclusion: which space-saving speaker cabinet should you choose?

If you want a speaker cab that is as light as possible, you’ve got some good options; the Fender Super Champ SC112 and Matrix Amplification Neolight NL12 are both incredibly light. The Fender is much cheaper, but the Matrix has a much bigger sound.

Alternatively, the Barefaced Reformer 112 is a bit heavier but is comparable to a 2×12″ in terms of it’s output. It’s also worth noting that since the Reformer is custom made, you can opt for a neo speaker which would make it a better all-round option.

If you are on a tight budget; the Fender Super Champ SC112 and Bugera 112TS are both solid options for 1×12” cabs.

If you purely want an alternative to a 4×12”; the Victory 2×12” or Orange 2×12” vertical cabs are solid options. I have the Victory because it matches the color of my VX The Kraken head amp. Either are great options but there are tonal differences due to them having different speakers.

And if you’re on a budget, the Marshall MX212A is extremely affordable but a lot of people tend to swap out the stock speaker for something higher quality, such as a Vintage 30. Overall, it’s a good cabinet for the money.

However, since adding the Barefaced Reformer 112 to this list, it’s output level makes it a good alternative. Also consider their 2×12″ option since it should be comparable to most 4×12″ cabs in terms of output level.

If you want to make the most of vertical space (i.e. you have a full size head amp); while the vertical 2×12” cabinets are great if you’re restricted on width, they’re not ideal for full-size head amplifiers.

But horizontal 2×12” cabinets are – they allow you to make great use of vertical space by stacking full-size head amplifiers on top of them.

While there are number of these cabinets on the market, you can’t go wrong with the Orange PPC212 – it comes fully loaded with Vintage 30 speakers.

There is also an open back version of this cab (PPC212-OB) which gives a more open and natural feel – it’s also cheaper for some reason. I bit the bullet and paid the extra for the closed back version because I preferred the tighter bass response.

Overall, you can’t really go wrong with any of these cabs.

Updated 9th August 2019: Barefaced Reformer 112 added to the list.

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