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Amp Gurus: New question (I think....)

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by PhatBasstard, Dec 16, 2017.

  1. PhatBasstard

    PhatBasstard Spector Dissector Supporting Member

    Feb 3, 2002
    Las Vegas, NV.
    I want to be able to use an 8 ohm 2x10 with an 8 ohm 4x10.
    Since this is usually not a great situation as the 2x10 gets over worked,
    would a Power Soak style amp attenuator between the amp and the 2X10,
    set to match the 4x10 (speaker for speaker), work?

    Either daisy chained (amp>4x10>attenuator>2x10) or
    separate amp outs (amp out 1>4x10 / amp out 2>attenuator>2x10).

    Any foreseeable reasons this would not work?

    Thanks in advance.
  2. agedhorse

    agedhorse SUSPENDED Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa, Product Support-Genz Benz
    I don't think you will find an attenuator large enough to safely handle the power, and it's not going to help the matching any without really screwing up the damping factor of the 210.

    Your best bet is to either use the two cabinets in parallel noting that the power handling of the 210 will dictate the limits, or just use the 410.

    Which amp specifically?
    Old Garage-Bander and Stumbo like this.
  3. PhatBasstard

    PhatBasstard Spector Dissector Supporting Member

    Feb 3, 2002
    Las Vegas, NV.
    The cab ins and outs are parallel already so no difference whether I daisy chain or not. I gave the examples because, if daisy chaining, the only way it would work was to go to the 4x10 first, then to the attenuator before the 2x10.
    Or I'm not understanding what you're getting at.
    Damping factor of the 2x10 is where I'd be lost completely.

    I get that the 2x10 (unattenuated) would dictate the useable limit. But even within limits, used with the 4x10, doesn't the unattenuated 2x10 receive twice the power (speaker for speaker) than the 4x10?
    This is what I'm trying to avoid. So I get the same usable (evenly operating) speaker area as a 6x10.
    A couple different Markbass.
    Not sure why it would matter.
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2017
  4. agedhorse

    agedhorse SUSPENDED Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa, Product Support-Genz Benz
    If you use a power soak type device to raise the effective impedance of the 210, the damping factor will go stupid high and probably sound sloppy loose.
  5. beans-on-toast

    beans-on-toast Supporting Member

    Aug 7, 2008
    Given the cost of an attenuator that can handle the power level of a bass amp, and the complications that arise in using one, you would be better off getting a matching speaker cabinet. The problem would be fixed properly.
  6. BadExample


    Jan 21, 2016
    The near no cost solution, slave one amp to the other, then one cab on each amp. Separate volume controls. Just adjust the 2x10 amp volume with the other turned all the way down, then adjust the other.
    el murdoque likes this.
  7. clejw


    May 28, 2006
    Phoenix, Arizona
    Do not use a power brake for this purpose. They are almost exclusively used by guitar players with over powered tube amps. An 8ohm 410 and 8ohm 210 used together will be fine. I doubt you will overdrive the 210 unless you have a crazy powerful amp and turn it up stupid loud. The 410 will sound significantly louder than the 210 because of sensitivity (if individual speaker types are similar) so keep this in mind. It actually might work well if you play next to the 410 and then put the 210 somewhere else on stage so other band mates can hear the bass too, just not as loud as the "main" cab.
  8. Idealy to make a 4x10 and 2x10 pairing a viable 6x10 the 2x10 will need to have twice the impedance of the 4x10. This way all six drivers will see the same amount of power.

    Running the pair with the same impedance would mean that the 4x10 would be limited by the 2x10 and the 4x10 could actually be louder by itself.
    mesaplayer83 and alesreaper9 like this.
  9. Separating your bass cabs can cause areas of cancellation and boom around the room. Not a good idea.
  10. PhatBasstard

    PhatBasstard Spector Dissector Supporting Member

    Feb 3, 2002
    Las Vegas, NV.
    Yes. This was the situation I was wondering if a Power Soak/Power Brake could remedy.
    But its looking like a no go for the various reasons stated above.

    Oh well.....
    Thanks everybody.
    BadExample likes this.
  11. 9Thumbs


    Jul 3, 2013
    Near Boston
    Radical idea: Try it and see how it sounds. If good, do it, if bad, don't
  12. It matters a lot what amp is being used.

    If you were using one that is 2 Ohm stable then you could have a 8 Ohm 2x10 with a 4 Ohm 4x10 and all speakers would be getting the same power distributed.

    An amp with two separate power amps would allow you to hook one up to each side and balance it out.

    Knowing what is being used allows someone to give the proper answers to your situation. Guessing with regards to amps can cause smoke to be released.
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2017
    Wisebass and BadExample like this.
  13. mesaplayer83


    Jun 27, 2017
    FWIW, I have run an 8 ohm 210 with an 8 ohm 410 - and it would get really loud before the 210 even came close to showing signs of distress - and it did sound really good... I'd say just pay some attention to what you're doing, and try it out - it could still work out for you...
  14. sheltjo6

    sheltjo6 Supporting Member

    Jun 10, 2012
    I’ve used a 4x10 and a 2x10 cabs with a single amp and never had a issue.
  15. basscooker

    basscooker Commercial User

    Apr 11, 2010
    cincy ky
    Owner, ChopShopAmps
    8 ohm 2x10, 4 ohm 410
  16. I believe you would want a 16 ohm 2x10 to pair with your 8 ohm 4x10 for all speakers to receive the same power.
    EDIT: basscooker and I were typing our posts at the same time - his version works also
    basscooker likes this.
  17. One of the things you may want to consider in doing this, is that you won't be able to hear the distant 2x10.
    Keeping them together and placing the 2x10 on top, closer to your ears, gives you a better chance to know when it is starting to stress. There are other caveats with separating speakers, but one reason should be enough for now.

    Realistically, adding a 2x10 to a 4x10, isn't going to be a big enough difference to be worth the trouble. The 2x10 will force you to limit how much power you can run and therefore holds back the 4x from it's full potential. The additional power realized by cutting the total impedance presented to the amp will not yield a significant amount of loudness. Going from 8 Ohms to 4 Ohms, usually gets you anywhere from a 30 to 50 percent power increase, at best that is 1.5 times the power. To sound like your amp is twice as loud, you need to increase the power roughly 10 times. Just let the 4x10 run free. If you need more, adding another similar 4x10 will get you in the vacinity of twice as loud. The 2x10 will come in handy when you play a smaller venue or just don't have the room for a larger footprint.
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2017
  18. Darn fingers switched it around. :banghead:
    I fixed it. Thanks for pointing it out. :thumbsup:
  19. Certainly there is an appropriate cat video that will make up for it?
  20. Cat-licking-finger-reaction.
    Old Garage-Bander likes this.

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