There really aren't a lot of options. The Mesa/Boogie
Revolver - which has a reputation for poor accelleration and
decelleration when changing speeds - retailed at about four
times the price of this unit. There's a tiny wall-wart powered
unit from Little Lanelie, and some expensive full-range
emulators from Motion Sound. Real Leslie speakers are
expensive and heavy.
As far as the SR-112 goes, it's not bad. But I'd like to see
the unit built with more robust materials. I'd also like to see a
version of the SR-112 in which the footswitch controls a brake
for the rotor, and do away with the speaker relay.
Model Year: 2002
Price: $450.00 (new)
Where Obtained: Apple Music Row - Portland, OR
If you're a fan of the Leslie speaker sound, you've probably
tried a bunch of electronic emulators that get close to that
sound, but somehow miss it. What's usually missing is the
complexity of the speaker's interaction with its surroundings -
sound gets sprayed out in all directions as the speaker rotates,
and your ear picks up not only the doppler effect as the speaker
moves toward then away from you and the changing frequency
response as you hear the on-axis sound alternating with off-
axis sounds, but also the subtle cues of how the actual
direction of the reflected sound changes. It's that last sonic cue
that not even the best of the emulators can reproduce.
The SR-112 is a true rotating speaker in a relatively
and compact cabinet. It has a single twelve-inch Eminence
guitar speaker rated at 100 (or maybe 150 - the published
figures are inconsistent) watts, and a rotating diffuser between
the speaker and the cabinet's front and top ports. A motor turns
the diffuser at one of two footswitch-selected rates. The high
and low speeds are adjustable over a wide range, covering the
ground from a slow, lush chorus sound to a deep watery
tremelo/vibrato sound. When you step on the footswitch to
change speeds, the speed changes gradually just as in a real
Leslie speaker - this rate of change is also adjustable.
A second button on the footswitch activates a speaker-
switching relay in the SR-112 to reroute your amp's output to a
different speaker. This is how you bypass the SR-112.
The cabinet has a built-in microphone with an XLR output
stage or recording use.
WIth a guitar the rotating speaker effect is very good.
the tone is a bit darker (less treble) than the direct sound from
any of my guitar amps. Also, the volume is slightly reduced
when playing through the SR-112. I suspect that this is due to
the construction of the unit, which does not allow any of the
Eminence speaker's direct sound to reach the listener.
Motion Sound suggests that the SR-112 should be used
separate guitar amplifier for maximum tonal flexibility. I agree
with this. However, once you have to lug a second amp it really
defeats the purpose of having a lightweight rotating speaker.
Setup couldn't be simpler. Run a few cables, and you're
There are connectors for AC power, the speaker output
from your amp, an external speaker (which could be the
speaker in your combo amp or a separate speaker cabinet),
and the footswitch. That's normally all you need. Note that if
you use a combo amp and the speaker is hardwired to the
amplifier, you'll need to modify the amp to insert the SR-112
between your amp and speaker.
So far, my SR-112 is holding up well. However, I am
unimpressed by the painted particle-board construction.
It works as the company claims, but the issues of durability and workmanship leave a bit to be desired.
I was very dissapointed from that respect, the only way I would buy another is if it was used and half the price.
Model Year: 2000
Price: $489.00 (new)
Where Obtained: JST Music-New Hampshire- mail order
The unit's concept is a good one, it has solid state controls with a foot switch that controls the rotor and switches your normal external cabinet on and off.
It is also controllable with three knobs mounted on top, which varys the speed and acceleration of the rotor.
It also has a dynamic mike element mounted inside the front of the cabinet with a balanced XLR connecter.
It is loaded with a single 12" speaker.
If your looking for real mechanical chorusing and tremolo, this does what it's supposed to. Although for a real leslie type sound it needs a second speaker with a frequency crossover. And the tremolo effect is not extremely deep. It will however nail the fast chorus sound of the early fenders like SRV used, depending of course on the amp you drive it with.
The cabinet and motor mount is made from low grade particle board, not a plus for cabinets as particle board
is often used as sound deadening and does not resonate well. As compared to say a marshall 1960 cabinet witch is has at least 7 ply hardwood.
The bottom of the rotor is also made of a particle board disk with a phenolic plastic piece shaped into two horns that direct the sound from the sides of the front cabinet.
The cabinet is spray painted flat black and the corners have cheap molded covers,,, how cheesy!
It is simple enough to use, the footswitch really helps here.
I received the unit broken from Fedx after it had been misdelivered and sent back New Hampshire. The motor mount was not designed to receive the abuse (or much abuse at all for that matter)during shipping and the motor was rolling around inside of the cabinet.
I had always wanted a leslie device and instead of sending it back and possibly receive another broken one, I decided to fix it. This gave me an opportunity to look at the inside of the unit as well.