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Basic Distortion Question

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Bryan Hassing, Apr 5, 2002.


  1. Hi: I have a Modulus Quantum 6 equipped with 9-volt Bartolinis that I play through a Peavey TKO 75 (circa 1988) equipped with whatever the non-Black Widow speaker is. I've never really tested the upper limits of this little combo's output. So, while playing last night, I set both the pre-gain and volume at 10 with the instrument (also at full volume) plugged into the low-gain input to see whether I'd get clipping. I didn't hear any obvious distortion and was surprised at this. Despite using the low-gain input and having all the EQs flat, I expected an active bass to create distortion with both pre-gain and volume maxxed. Is it possible that enough distortion existed to cause speaker damage or electronic damage without being immediately audible? In other words, is the level of distortion that would cause speaker damage or damage to the internal electronics blatantly audible? Thanks

    Bryan

    P.S. I can't say the tone from this little TKO75 at full volume was great. Perhaps a BAM210 would cure that. ;)
     
  2. 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
    It's not distortion that damages speakers: it's power--excessive power that causes the speaker voice coil to overheat. Or so much power that the speaker cone travels too far and causes mechanical damage by bottoming out or popping out of the magnet gap. You would definitely hear a speaker bottoming out.

    Maybe you've got a lot of headroom in your rig!
     
  3. Thanks Bob: I don't know whether this small combo has a lot of headroom or what the power-handling capabilities of the speaker are. I do wonder if the "DDT Speaker Protection" as Peavey calls it, is the reason I heard no distortion. Allegedly, this DDT compression senses the onset of clipping and reduces gain to minimize the potential for damage. Despite its unremarkable sound at high volume, I'm glad this little 75-watt combo can achieve a decent level of loudness.

    Bryan
     
  4. 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
    Yup, that's probably it. I've never used or bench-tested a Peavey amp with DDT, but your description fits what I've been told it does.