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ACOUSTIC IMAGE COMBOS/SPEAKERS: What's the difference between the Contra, Coda, Corus and TEN²?
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Acoustic Image makes three basic and one special combo - and three different speakers - each for different needs. Complete specifications are shown on each combo's page (links below), so we won't focus on the features they all share. We also have a complete overview of the Acoustic Image line on their manufacturer page.


The Contra has one channel, no effects, and is the evolution of their original combo. It's a full range amp suitable for virtually any instrument, although it was originally designed for acoustic bass. The current Series 4plus model has roughly half the power of the other Acoustic Image Combos (300w vs 600w), and does not feature the removable head option of the other combos.

The Coda is essentially similar to the Contra, but adds the option of a second channel (1 and 2 channel models are available), and features a built-in digital effects (reverb, chorus, etc.) module. It is, like the Contra (and Ten2, below) a full range amp suitable for any instrument including bass. It offers a higher power rating, a headphone jack, and a removable head, enabling you to use it with other speakers instead of the combo. It also features XLR microphone inputs with phantom power, which the Contra doesn't have. If you don't need the effects, the ability to remove the head and/or the higher power, the Contra is a steal!

The Corus is functionally identical to the Coda, but it uses a different ten-inch woofer and reduces the attenuation of the midrange/high speaker, as the woofer is more efficient (louder per watt). Due to this difference, the sound is more focused and forward. The Corus is suited for guitar, most keyboards, and other non-bass instruments; the woofer in the Corus does not "reach as low" and isn't as suitable for bass instruments, but can be used for bass in a pinch. For regular use with bass instruments, the Coda is a better choice.

The new TEN2 uses the same higher power amplifier and preamp as the Coda and Corus but utilizes Acoustic Image's unique compact dual ten-inch woofer cabinet with a single tweeter. One woofer faces down, the other faces forward. It also has the removable head feature. This produces more of the "in your face" sound of a conventional speaker cabinet combined the downward firing subwoofer design. The TEN2 is the smallest 2x10 combo on the market.

Bass or Cello Player? Get the Contra, Coda; or if you prefer a more forward sound or need the most volume possible in a compact rig, choose the new TEN2. If your needs are for non-bass instruments, or those that do not go far below 100 hz., the Corus or TEN2 are probably the best choice; its "more forward" sound works very well for guitar, cello, mandolin, fiddle/violin, and many other acoustic instruments. The Corus has also proven to be the favorite of keyboard players who have tried both speaker versions. If you plan to play bass and guitar (or other higher-pitched instruments), I'd recommend the Contra, Coda, or TEN2; you'll need the low end for the bass instruments, but the higher pitched instruments still sound great through the "regular" models!


The Coda EX is identical to the speaker section of the Contra and Coda combo amps.

The Corus EX is identical to the speaker section of the Corus combo amp. Any of the two models are ideal for use as an extension speaker to any of the combos, or as a standalone speaker used with another amplifier head. The TEN2 EX is a more forward sounding full range cabinet.

The new TEN2 EX has two ten inch drivers, one facing down, one facing forward, along with a tweeter for high frequencies. The tweeter and crossover used in the TEN2 EX differs from the other EX cabinets, so the tweeter covers more of the middle frequencies. The forward facing driver produces more of the "in your face" sound of a conventional speaker cabinet and combines it with Acoustic Image's downward firing subwoofer design. The TEN2 is the smallest 2x10 cabinet on the market.

Details of each amp and speaker are on the individual product pages (click here to go to a listing of all Acoustic Image products as well as a matrix view of their differences), but if you have any questions or need to explore their features further, please feel free to contact us.

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The Fine Print:

The information contained herein is based on what's in my brain — and/or my observations and opinions from my personal experiences (and those of Bob, before me) — as of this moment today, and is subject to change. I'm sure that a great deal more information and detail could be added — but the intent of these writings is to present easily understood, quick FAQs, to address common questions and improve the reader's general knowledge.

What's written here is by no means any kind of authoritative absolute answer, for I am not the world's greatest authority on bass (not even close), or on much of anything else, for that matter. So, by all means, get a second opinion, and know that all the information provided here is for general informational purposes only. I am not providing professional advice; be aware that, where applicable, any information acted upon is at your own risk.

I simply and sincerely hope the information and opinions here are helpful to you on your quest for knowledge about the bass and related subjects... that's the point!

I welcome email with dissenting and additional viewpoints/information/updates that help improve my personal awareness and these content pages. If you have a question that you think belongs here, please let me know.

PS: It should go without saying that all of the information here, unless otherwise attributed, was expressly created by us for the benefit of our customers. All graphics, text, data, and other information is copyrighted © 1995-current. You are not permitted to re-use any text, information, or graphical elements on your own website; you may post links to it, or small excerpts, on message boards if properly attributed and linked back to our pages.