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The functional reality is the fact that while the motor structure on D and K series speakers remained essentially unchanged, the cone and surround are markedly different.
The following images of the D & K series speakers are from my personal collection (not downloaded from the Internet), and the differences can be clearly seen.
With the introduction of the K series, the wattage remained at 100W RMS, with the same 4" diameter edge wound aluminium coil.
Because of improvements in the cone material and slightly increased thickness, distortion was "pushed back" making the speaker work cleaner at even higher volumes.
The orange framed D series speakers were so coloured for Fender and the "F" designation after the D-120 (D-120F) was simply a reference that these specifically tagged speakers were slated for Fender amps.
And since the new cone design would retrofit the D series, there really was no reason to change the code.While it is cleaner than most of its contemporary competitors, Jensen, Celestion, CTS, Emminence, et al, cone "break up" could still be achieved before ear splitting volumes were reached.This is part of what made them so desirable in Fender amps, they stayed cleaner, and so drove the sound better into the higher volumes.Just listen to the Allman Brothers at Filmore to hear Duane Allman's Marshall amps drive the D-120 equipped 4-12 cabinets he played through.
The only real competition at the time came from Altec, Electro Voice and Cetec Gauss.
D series speakers were commonly grey framed for the general market and Fender amps (Deluxe, Showman, Twin, et al) were initially outfitted with the grey framed D series speakers, usually by special order.