TOOB ultra-light guitar and bass cabinets were conceived in 2007, when something dawned on Markku Pietinen, a retired communications executive and amateur jazz guitarist from Finland: The trend towards lighter equipment, evident among bassists, would eventually reach the conservative world of guitarists. It took a decade to happen.
Today, lightweight Neo speakers, notably Jensen®s, can be found in upmarket guitar combos and cabs. Light Class D guitar amps are mushrooming. However, the heavy plywood cabinets housing the speakers remain the same as in 1967, when Markku played rock'n'roll through his first self-made boxes.
The name TOOB comes from Thinking Out Of the Box – in this case, quite literally. On a walk past a construction site, Markku spotted a length of corrugated, double-wall plastic
drainage pipe. He was mesmerized by its looks and weight. Countless prototypes later, first TOOBs were launched in 2017. These 12J and 12R Originals are still the backbone. They have relied on the Jensen N12/100 TR or classic Tornado from the very beginning.
The public transit friendly METRO 6.5” line was introduced in 2020, following requests from urban pro musicians. Weighing around 4 lbs and fitting in a backpack, these are by far the smallest cabs for the bandstand. Close collaboration with Jensen was essential in selecting the right speakers for each version: Jensen C6V for GP (Guitar Ported), SICA 6 l 1,5SL for BG (Bass & Guitar), and SICA 6 D 1,5SL for FR (Full range, flat response).
2021 marks a return to the original caliber with the new S (“Studio”) series. The closed-back 10S and 12S borrow a key METRO innovation, a felt-dampened sound port on the back panel. The result: a round, pleasant tone right between the Originals. Jensen Tornados are again the standard speakers, with the amazing Jensen Blackbird 40 AlNiCos offered as an option.
Each TOOB and METRO is assembled by hand. Hundreds have been shipped to over 20 countries, from Japan to Brazil, with pro musicians as the main users. The unique basic design enables Markku to take each customer’s wishes into account. Sometimes this requires dozens of messages back and forth. The result? One product return, back in 2018. Even that “black sheep” found a home, as a demo at the SICA-Jensen factory.