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1200 WATTS - WHY ?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by 57pbass, May 26, 2019.

  1. This is where I’m at.
    Lardass5000 likes this.
  2. Yes, this is where I’m at, too.
    The best sounding amps imo are always lower powered (B15, B25, Bassmans, GK RBs, SVT). Just add more speakers.
  3. I second the motion! Back in that time period our bass player moved up from the venerable Fender Bassman (2 X 12 Piggy Back) to a Dual Showman loaded with D140F's. It was a big improvement, but we found on the bigger stages it actually took two of those to put some bass into those rooms, and the second amp didn't belong to us. We had to borrow it, and it wasn't always available, of course. Yeah, we just had to make do back then. Like DJ said, what else could we do? At the time, we thought we were pretty hot #$%$#. Until the SVT's showed up.
    DJ Bebop, spiritbass and Pbassmanca like this.
  4. MyMusic


    Jun 1, 2010
    Dover, De
    You gotta use what works for you cause enough ain't always enough!!!!!:D:D:D
    Pbassmanca likes this.
  5. micguy


    May 17, 2011
    ... until your bass goes into feed back when you’ve left the stage. At that point, too much power means your speakers are toast and you have no rig. Yes, you should remember to turn your bass volume off, but as a foh guy, I can tell you that doesn’t always happen.
    Haroldo and Pbassmanca like this.
  6. lfmn16

    lfmn16 SUSPENDED Supporting Member

    Sep 21, 2011
    charles town, wv
    Not guitar amps. :D
    Nevada Pete and Tim1 like this.
  7. Bubble


    Apr 17, 2013
    It takes some technical knowledge to fully understand, but when passing dc current through a coil, it takes a bit of time to flow because of a resistance caused by a magnetic field that forms in a way that generates an opposing current in the voice coil (reversed from what is applied). The inflowing current must wait until the opposing current reduces, then it's almost a straight path through.

    When injecting an ac current, the current from the amp switches direction before the opposing current decays.
    The faster the current reverses, the less time it has to get through the opposing current, called Counter Electromagnetomotive force, or CEMF.

    The older generations of amps seem made for 4 string basses and the 50hz rolloff is not much of a problem unless you really honk hard on it. But trying to push current through the voice coil to amp a 5 string bass or Drop D (low B), on an amp intended for a 4 string , puts a strain on it.
    BWorm likes this.
  8. Bubble


    Apr 17, 2013
    Why roll off at 50hz ? It reduces the annoying deep low thump when plucking.
  9. bertbassplayer

    bertbassplayer Supporting Member

    Jul 7, 2000
    Dallas/Ft. Worth, TX
    Believe it or not, there was a time where people actually played loudly. Bass amps got more and more powerful to combat the evil 100 Watt stacks of the feared guitarists and thick loud cymbals of the bashers (drummers). I remember just 10 years ago or so having to have a rig to compete with a Fender Twin Reverb and a Roland Jazz Chorus in a band. People used to take half stacks to play small clubs, and the clubs allowed it too.

    Now it seems that everyone is going low stage volume, guitarists are using 15-20 Watt 1x10 or 1x12 combos and thinner bigger cymbals are now in vogue. So having 1200Watts of bass power isn't needed.
    DJ Bebop and DWBass like this.
  10. Ampslut


    May 15, 2017
    What do you use for cabs?
    DJ Bebop likes this.
  11. Wisebass


    Jan 12, 2017
    Lost in Space
    Hi 57pbass :)

    It' s all about the sound! :D Or both sounds?


    may the bass be with you

  12. Jon Lars

    Jon Lars

    Mar 16, 2011
    Serendipitously, my day job is in the Hall of Watts.

    I hereby designate this rotor for Bassage:


    You're welcome.
    DrMole, Novarocker, Wisebass and 4 others like this.
  13. spiritbass

    spiritbass Supporting Member

    Jun 9, 2004
    Ashland, MO
    Watt is it?
  14. Jon Lars

    Jon Lars

    Mar 16, 2011

    A rotor for a generator, your source of all watts:


    We are finishing upgrading all ten generators to produce 112.5 megawatts apiece.

    That means this one generator can power 93,750 amplifiers to a full 1200 watts.

    That should do it.
    Last edited: May 27, 2019
  15. Higher efficiency speakers in appropriately chosen efficient cab design makes a huge difference to volume.... 3db is a huge chunk of watts. So i use a very efficient eminence neo 1x12 in a compact traynor ported cab. I can play as loud as my very loud guitar player who uses pricey elitist guitar heads and 4x12 cabs, just with my pf350 into that 112 cab.

    My driver of choice is deltalite neo

    99.9db per watt efficiency.


    Taken from a well written and mathematically correct lifewire article:

    "Speakers range in efficiency or sensitivity from about 85dB (very inefficient) up to 105dB (very efficient). As a comparison, a speaker with 85 dB efficiency rating will take twice the amplifier power to reach the same volume as a speaker with 88 dB efficiency. Similarly, a speaker with an 88 dB efficiency rating will require ten times more power than a speaker with a 98 dB efficiency rating to play at the same level. If you're starting with a 100 watt/channel receiver, you would need 1000 watts (!) of power output to double the perceived volume level."
    Last edited: May 27, 2019
  16. I've read a recommended ratio of 3 to 1 for bass watts to guitar watts. With a steel guitar and a tele, you could easily hit 400W of guitar (Session 1000, and a Twin Reverb ultralinear). Question answered ;).
    DJ Bebop and Arthur U. Poon like this.
  17. Ampslut


    May 15, 2017
    I think we use big power today because we can. The bass has been pushed around by guitars and drums for so long now that we finally have the power to compete if we have too. Now, for the OP, can you hear any difference between 800 and 1200 watts? The way stuff is rated can be pretty deceiving. If you are comparing 800 Messa watts to 1200 Behringer watts? Let's just say, you get what you pay for.
  18. 6Bass101


    Apr 2, 2016
    Fort Mill, SC
    Not sure if it has been said, but there isn't much difference between 800 watts and 1200 watts (volume-wise), is there?
  19. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa, Product Support-Genz Benz
    Except that little of what you posted above is true (except the part about damaging speakers. There are small amps (of all classes) with very low output impedance and larger amps with higher output impedances. It depends very much on the design.

    Very true, large amps result in less margin in the event of an accident, forgetful moment, or momentary lapse of good judgement. Unfortunately I see a fair amount of this.

    Again, none of this makes any sense in the context of a bass amp/speaker. The inductive properties affect the higher frequencies not the lower frequencies.

    Mmmmm, medium voltage machines. As a (former) power systems engineer, it still amazes me how well they understood electromagnetic theory and how capable they were designing motors, generators and automatic controls in the 1920's and 1930's. The fact that many of these machines are still running today is a testimony to that technology imo.
    Zbysek, Bill Kron, DJ Bebop and 10 others like this.
  20. mrjim123

    mrjim123 Supporting Member

    May 17, 2008
    <sarcasm mode> Because this is America, and "more" and "bigger" are always better. </sarcasm mode>
    Lardass5000, Wisebass and agedhorse like this.

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