Guitar Speaker Guide

The 5 Best Speakers for a Marshall DSL40CR Amplifier

The 5 Best Speakers for a Marshall DSL40CR Amplifier

This is my pick for the 5 best replacement speakers for a Marshall DSL40CR amplifier.  This list will also take into account variations and older models of the DSL40 amplifier.  The Marshall DSL40CR is one of the best amplifiers of all-time for its pedal-free experience.  While the Marshall DSL amplifier sounds amazing already, these speakers will improve the tone to no end.

If you are new to choosing a speaker I highly recommend you check out my guide on what to know before changing your amplifier’s speaker. “The Best”, is always subjective to your own tastes.  This list will give you a mix of suggestions based on different types of tone.

Best Speakers for a Marshall DSL40CR Amplifier
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The Stock Marshall DSL40CR Celestion V-Type Speaker

If your amplifier has the Celestion V-Type speaker in it already then you might not need to change the speaker.  I changed mine because I found the V-Type a little bit too bright for my type of sound.

Changing the Speaker in a Marshall DSL40CR

The great thing about the Marshall DSL40CR is it can handle a number of different speakers.  The back of the amplifier can offer both single and dual 8 OHM loads as well as one or two 16 OHM loads.  This opens up a World of opportunity speaker selection wise.  If you only ever use the amplifiers built-in speaker you can simply get whichever OHM rated speaker you like (8 or 16 OHM).

By default, the stock Marshall DSL40CR comes preloaded with a 16 OHM Celestion V-Type Speaker.  This is connected to the 1×16 OHM output.  I swapped my speaker to an 8 OHM Eminence speaker so I just moved the speaker cable to the 1×8 OHM output.

Please make sure you select the correct output before turning your amplifier on.  Okay, with that out of the way here is my list.  Please note these are not in any particular order due to the subjectivity factor.

How to swap a speaker on a Marshall DSL40CR

The video posted below shows the process for changing a speaker in the Marshall DSL40CR guitar amplifier.

Please make sure you select the correct output before turning your amplifier on.  Okay, with that out of the way here is my list for the best replacement speakers for a Marshall DSL40CR amplifier.  Please note these are not in any particular order due to the subjectivity factor.

1. Celestion Vintage 30

The Marshall is aimed at guitarists of all genres. It’s not surprising that a lot of classic rock guitarists love this amplifier thanks to the onboard drive tones.  One of the classic configurations of all time is a Marshall and a Celestion Vintage 30 speaker.

The Vintage 30 will give you a nice clean tone while absolutely allowing you to use the high gain channel maintaining top-end frequency bite.  Home studio users will love this combination! The Vintage 30 has been used on more recordings than anything else because it has a midrange frequency that cuts the mix.

I wrote a detailed article about the iconic nature of the Vintage 30 here.  While it’s not my preferred sound, I know why so many touring and studio musicians alike use them.

The Celestion vintage 30 is 60-watts RMS and will handle the 40 watts of the Marshall no problems at all.  The sensitivity level of the Vintage 30 is 100dB which is not the loudest speaker out there but it’s close! Depending on which configuration you want to install it comes in both 8 and 16 OHM versions. This is easily one of the best replacement speakers for a Marshall DSL40CR.

Celestion Vintage 30 - 5 Best Speakers for a Marshall DSL40CR
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2. Eminence Texas Heat

This speaker really is a blues guitarist’s dream! I have been a huge fan of the Texas Heat speaker for a number of years and it continues to impress me.  The Texas Heat will change the Marshall DSL amplifier sound drastically so just be forewarned.

I play a lot of Blues and roots music and for the sound that I really love, the original V-Type speaker was just too bright. For this reason, I changed the speaker to the Texas Heat.  The Texas Heat is a thick and juicy sounding speaker that does knock quite a bit of top-end frequencies off.  This makes the DSL40 sound a little more like a Fender amplifier in some ways thanks to the American voicing of the Texas Heat.

Not everyone will want to change the speaker in the Marshall DSL40CR to this speaker.  For me, this was the easiest way to get a fatter sound without the ultra-high-end that this amplifier is capable of. The good news is, I still think the amp has more than enough high-end frequency response.

Instead of running the amplifiers treble control at 9 O’Clock I can now run it at around 11 O’Clock and the presence control is a lot easier to work with as well.  Overall, the Texas Heat is the perfect speaker for those who want to upgrade the Marshall DSL40CR amplifier speaker to something warmer and fuller sounding.

The Texas Heat speaker comes in at 99.4 dB so it’s loud enough for everyone.  Rated at 150 watts RMS you won’t get a lot of speaker distortion with this speaker.  If you like lots of clean headroom on your clean channel then this is a really great choice.  This is the speaker I am currently using in my DSL and I love it.

The Texas Heat will work for anything from Jazz, Blues, Rock, and heavier tones.  It really sings on the Ultragain channel but I find it shines best on the crunch and clean channel. The Eminence Texas heat is one of the best replacement speakers out there for a Marshall DSL40CR amplifier.

Eminence Texas Heat
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3. Celestion Creamback / Neo Creamback

Whether you pick the regular Celestion Creamback or the lightweight Neodymium version this is a beautiful upgrade.  What you will hear is pristine and beautiful clean tones with a smooth and detailed drive channel.  The Neodymium version is a much lighter speaker than the regular Creamback.  It also does sound a little bit different as well.  To my ear, the Neo Creamback is much more mellow sounding, especially on the high-end frequencies.

The Celestion Creamback is a very popular choice for a Marshall DSL40CR or their older counter-parts.  If your current Marshall DSL40 has the Seventy 80 speaker this will be a huge upgrade.  The main differences will be note definition, no icepick high frequencies, and an overall warmer and smoother sound.

A Creamback is the choice for making an amplifier sounding a lot more ’boutique’ than it is, just by putting it in.  If you are a really high gain player, this might not be the best choice.  If you play country, blues, or classic rock, this is a fantastic option.

Unlike the Celestion Vintage 30, the Creamback is only rated at 97dB sensitivity.  This speaker is not as loud as the Vintage 30 but it has a much more premium sound.  Rated at 65 watts, the regular Creamback has no problems being loaded into a Marshall DSL40CR.

Both the Neodymium version and the regular version of the Creamback share the same sensitivity rating.  The main difference is the power rating.  The regular Creamback is 65 watts versus the 60 watts of the Neo-Creamback.

Eminence Creamback
Regular: Buy it on Sweetwater

Neo Creamback Speaker
Neo: Buy it on Sweetwater

4. Eminence Swamp Thang

Yep! Another Eminence speaker! The reason I have added this to the list is for those who love the Marshalls Ultragain channel.  If you like big and thick distortion all day, then the Swamp Thang is an amazing choice.  I love this speaker because the clean tones are beautiful but the drive tones sound amazing.

The best thing about the Swamp Thang speaker is the fact it is a super-high-headroom guitar speaker.  This means it will not break up much even with the amplifier cranked loudly.  This will give you a very amplifier-accurate sound without the inherent speaker distortion coloring the sound.

Rated at 150-watt and 102 dB puts this in the list of loudest guitar speakers in the World! If loud is the name of the game as well as being able to sound great clean and dirty, the Swamp Thang is amazing. The Swamp Thang comes in both 8 and 16 OHM options. If you also own a Fender amplifier get the 8 OHM and see how great this speaker makes that sound too. Overall, this is a fantastic choice for the Marshall DSL40CR.

Eminence Swamp Thang
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5. Celestion Gold G12 Alnico Guitar Speaker

Do you want to get the best of the best in terms of Celestion speakers?  If you do, then the Celestion Gold is the choice of many.  These are one of the most expensive guitars in the World but they really sound amazing.  The benefit of the Celestion Gold speaker is its 3D projection.  This speaker has a really forward sound which makes it stand out of the amplifier beautifully.

The Celestion Gold weighs in at 50-watts and comes in at 100 dB so it will be plenty loud.  One of the characteristics of the Celestion Gold is that it will give you some speaker distortion when you turn the Marshall up loud.  The good news is the speaker’s distortion is beautiful.  This is one of the most popular speakers for guitar amps for a reason.

Unlike the Celestion Blue, the Gold speaker will stay cleaner a lot longer and will also have no problems handling the 40-watts RMS of the Marshall DSL40CR.  You will see Celestion Goldback speakers in a lot of higher-end boutique guitar amplifiers. The Celestion Gold is one of the most expensive speakers out there but it sure sounds great.

Celestion Gold
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Considerations

One thing I need to make mention of is weight.  If you don’t want to make the amplifier any heavier then go for the Celestion speakers.  The Eminence speakers sound amazing but they all have huge magnets and weigh the amplifier down over the stock speaker.

If you are looking for a high headroom speaker with maximum volume efficiency then check out my list for the loudest speakers in the World.  The Marshall DSL40CR is one of the best amplifiers ever. Check it out on Sweetwater if you don’t yet own one.