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Bass Amp VS. Guitar Amp

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by beedubyuh, Aug 16, 2007.

  1. beedubyuh


    Jul 20, 2007
    Chicago, IL
    I've always heard that playing a bass through a guitar amp will cause damage to the amp due to it not being designed handle such low notes. I assume this damage would occur over time (not immediately) and would be primarily to the speaker.:meh:

    Is this true? If so, how hard would it be to "bass-proof" a guitar amp? Is it just a matter of swapping out the speaker? Or are there other differences in the wiring/tubes/etc. that must be accounted for, too?:confused:

    I know some guitarists use bass amps, just wondering what it would take to go the other way.
  2. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    The speaker is the weakest link. Also the wattage...it's a lot easier to amplify the guitar frequency than the bass frequency, since human ears hear the higher tones much easier than the lower ones. That's why most bass amps have a significant wattage bump over guitar amps.
  3. anderbass


    Dec 20, 2005
    Phoenix. Az.
    If you have a specific guitar amp in mind, I'll bet you'll get much better advice
    if you tell us what combo, or amp/cab your considering.

    Also if the speaker arrangement is of a closed or open-back design.
    Some guitar rigs work as bass amps allot better than others...:)
  4. beedubyuh


    Jul 20, 2007
    Chicago, IL
    Thanks for your thoughts.

    I don't have a particular amp in mind. I actually just bought some new bass gear (Carvin B800 & Dr. Bass 210) and am looking forward to that!:)

    I do have a Fender Blues Junior that I'm thinking of selling since it's basically never been used (to pay for the Dr. Bass). For the sake of argument, could an amp like that be "bass-proofed"?

    I imagine the dimensions of the cabinet matter, too, right? It seems like guitar amps tend to be shallower. It still might be an interesting sound.

    I wonder if it would be feasible to convert an inexpensive all-tube guitar amp, like that Fender Blues Junior, into a bass amp?
  5. cadduc


    Mar 4, 2006
    no no no

    any amp will amplify any signal

    carol kaye used a super reverb and that was her only recording amp
    she never changed the speakers either
    she disconnected one of em because it was blown out when she bought it
    now guitar was her main instrument until she became the studio bassist in la

    i have used twins, showmen, bassman, and all kinds of other amps
    now make sure u use bass speakers when playing out or at higher volumes, you will absolutely blow speakers

    remember the ampeg svt was promoted for both guitar and bass, it became the amp for bass because we like big clean sound, guitar players have a tuff time with 300 Watts rms and no distortion, it just doesnt work unless you are on tour as the rolling stones

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