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are there any kinds of power amps not compatible with a bass rig?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by mastadulog, Feb 25, 2003.


  1. mastadulog

    mastadulog

    Jan 13, 2003
    NYC fo sheezy
    i just did a search on power amps on ebay. before i actually bid on one, id like to know if there are any particular brands or types of power amps that aren't compatible with a bass rig. like, there are some amps with vu meters and some amps that connect to speakers via banana plugs(?). i'm guessing these aren't compatible but am i wrong? or should i just stick to brands that are familiar around these forums.
     
  2. jasonbraatz

    jasonbraatz

    Oct 18, 2000
    Oakland, CA
    anything that accepts a line level voltage and amplifies it so it can drive a speaker will work. a few people on here have even gotten car stereo amps to work in a bass rig.


    whether it will sound good/be practical is another story, plus have enough power to be worthwhile for anything outside of bedroom practice.


    and banana plugs used to be the common high-power speaker connection, but now it's speakons. just avoid amps that only have bare-wire connectors.
     
  3. mastadulog

    mastadulog

    Jan 13, 2003
    NYC fo sheezy
    are banana plugs the same as a 1/4" jack?
     
  4. No, they are not the same thing as 1/4" jacks.

    Banana plugs have 2 male prongs, spaced about 1/2" apart. They are usually inserted into the binding pole (bare wire) connector ends. You can buy pre-made cables, or just buy the ends and put them on your cable yourself.
     
  5. mastadulog

    mastadulog

    Jan 13, 2003
    NYC fo sheezy
    do they sell an adapter of some sort so i can use a regular speaker cable?
     
  6. Yes, I have seen female 1/4" to Banana adapters.

    You may want to consider making your own. I used heavy guage speaker wire, and bought a good 1/4 and banana ends. 10 minutes with the solder iron, and I have great cables. Alot cheaper than buying pre-made.
     
  7. dsmith

    dsmith

    Mar 29, 2001
    Mt. Vernon, KY
    Why don't you post what you have as far as cabs, and what you are willing to spend. I believe you might benefit from some of the input you will receive on the model to look for, as well as how much headroom you will have with a particular amp.

    Just a suggestion.
     
  8. jad

    jad

    Aug 29, 2002
    Pittsburgh, PA
    I'm a neophyte when it comes to electronics, so someone correct me if I'm wrong. Some power amps would not be good for use in a bass guitar rig, or for sound reinforcement in general. I'm talking about the type used to drive a large number of speakers (with transformers on them) over long lines, like the PA system at Kmart used to announce blue light specials. These types of amps are not as common as the kind you would use for bass. You wouldn't find one of these in a music store, but you might come across one on EBay and not realize it.
     
  9. Mr. Pitiful

    Mr. Pitiful

    Jan 22, 2003
    Fargo ND
    A few of us on her, including myself have had problems with the QSC power amps clipping, apparently they need a louder signal coming in than alot of the pre amps send out. You might want to do a search on QSC. Others have had no problems, possibly due to different pre amps.

    Mr. Pitiful
     
  10. mastadulog

    mastadulog

    Jan 13, 2003
    NYC fo sheezy
    well i dont have cabs yet, but i do plan on getting 2 of those avatar 4x10's sometime, so i guess i need at least 400 watts per channel. i was just curious how much it would cost to get a preamp out installed on the back of my amp?
     
  11. mastadulog

    mastadulog

    Jan 13, 2003
    NYC fo sheezy
    what about those home stereo power amps? can i use those?
     
  12. mastadulog

    mastadulog

    Jan 13, 2003
    NYC fo sheezy
    does anybody know? because i'm seriously thinking about using one of these
     
  13. ESP-LTD

    ESP-LTD

    Sep 9, 2001
    Idaho
    You can use them, but I don't think you'd find them very good at the job. If you want to push 400w x2 you need a serious amp. About the cheapest you can find is used Peavey PA stuff; heavy but sturdy.
     
  14. mastadulog

    mastadulog

    Jan 13, 2003
    NYC fo sheezy
    thanks for the info, man. i think ill get a qsc rmx. i like they way they look. i also saw this home stereo amp cabable of 500 watts into 2 channels. thats crazy.
     
  15. Well..not trying to be snobbish...etc. But you need to look at PA power amps. QSC makes one that can put out 1700W into 2 channels at 2 ohms.

    Home amps are really made for staying in one place. Usually not rackmounted from the start, not make for quick speaker disconnects. Usually more expensive also.
     
  16. Bob Lee (QSC)

    Bob Lee (QSC) In case you missed it, I work for QSC Audio! Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 3, 2001
    Costa Mesa, Calif.
    Technical Communications Developer, QSC Audio
    You generally wouldn't want an amp that was made to drive distributed speaker lines--e.g., 25-, 70-, or 100-volt lines. Those are for installed sound systems and require a step-down transformer for each speaker. Plus, most of them use output transformers to step the output signal voltage up to the distributed line voltage, so there would be a lot of additional weight you'd have to lug around.

    You generally wouldn't want a consumer-type amp, either, even if it is rack-mountable, because it probably won't be built to take repeated transport and getting knocked about.
     
  17. mastadulog

    mastadulog

    Jan 13, 2003
    NYC fo sheezy
    thanks for the info, guys. i think i have my sights set on a qsc rmx. i just saw the sam ash website. i think the cheapest one was $399. is there anywhere i can get it for a lower price?
     
  18. Bob Lee (QSC)

    Bob Lee (QSC) In case you missed it, I work for QSC Audio! Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 3, 2001
    Costa Mesa, Calif.
    Technical Communications Developer, QSC Audio
    Which model? The RMX 850's US list price is $429, so $399 wouldn't be any kind of bargain unless they're throwing some other stuff in, too. The RMX 1450's list is $549, so that would be more reasonable.
     
  19. mastadulog

    mastadulog

    Jan 13, 2003
    NYC fo sheezy
    and does anyone have a list of reputable power amp companies? id like to check their websites. thanks in advance