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bass head through guitar cab?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by thunderbolt, May 3, 2010.

  1. I know that you shouldn't play bass into a guitar amplifier, but what about using a bass head into a guitar cabinet for playing guitar? I like to play guitar too, and I was considering buying a peavey tube head. If I match it with a guitar cabinet (marshall probably) and play guitar through it, could the bass head possibly produce tones too low for the speaker cab to handle? I want to know what I'm getting into before I pull the trigger on anything.:bassist:
  2. PaulNYC


    Apr 2, 2009
    New York, NY
    i got paid for a gig once.
    First sentence: wrong
    many threads where people have reported it is ok to use guitar amp but not guitar cabs with bass.
  3. Yes, a bass head can blow a guitar cabinet if you're playing bass through it. But as long as you don't crank the bass, for playing guitar through a guitar cabinet, it'll be alright. Tubes are tubes and EQ is EQ. I've done it plenty of times. Use your ears and back off if you hear farting, just like you would in any other case.
  4. Rickett Customs

    Rickett Customs

    Jul 30, 2007
    Southern Maryland
    Luthier: Rickett Customs...........www.rickettcustomguitars.com
    Guitar cab speaker, were not designed for the lowend frequencies of the bass.

    There's a thread you could fit this into:

    "Dumb things you've done to equipment"

    j/k ;)

    But no, I wouldn't do it.
  5. guitar heads sound great w/ bass, and as said guitar cabs and bass don't mix. I've used a bass amp for guitar but didn't like it. needed way too much tone shaping to make it work. a tube head might be better though . . .
  6. Christian Waiau

    Christian Waiau

    Jun 16, 2005
    las vegas/maui, nevada/hawaii
    Endorsing Artist: Spector, Aguilar, Darkglass
    guitar head on guitar cab is fine.. not sure on bass head on guitar cab..
  7. Thunder Pulse

    Thunder Pulse

    May 12, 2007
    Fender Bassman: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fender_Bassman

    Bass & guitar heads don't "produce" tones, they just amplify whatever's plugged into them, a guitar in your case.

    Second sentence: not quite correct.

    Guitarists typically use guitar cabs and bassists typically use bass cabs, but there will always be people that like to try different combinations of stuff looking for a "sound." Check 1:30 into the clip:

    And what about guitarists who use octave pedals? They're generating frequencies an octave down and sending them through guitar cabs. It's all about the excursion limits and power handling capability of the guitar cab.
    lug likes this.
  8. BellBottomBlues


    Feb 21, 2007
    New York
    Endorser:Fender User:Rotosound, LaBella, Ashdown, Lindy Fralin
    My first big cabinet was a Marshall 4x12 guitar cabinet. Wasn't the best bass cab I've ever used (it wasn't that great) but it had a bit of grind.
  9. Hassouni


    Apr 11, 2010
    If you're not using a high powered SS bass head, you can plug into a 4x12 w robust speakers and it'll be fine. At my band practice I plug my 100w Marshall plexi reissue into what's either a 280w or 300w Marshall 1960A and it's fine
  10. A tube bass amp with a GUITAR running through it into a guitar cabinet of sufficient power handling will be fine. You may or may not like what comes out however.

    Bass through a guitar amp is fine

    Bass into a guitar cab is not as the speakers will not be robust enough to handle the excursion.

  11. Thunder Pulse

    Thunder Pulse

    May 12, 2007
    Only at higher volume levels.
    kosmicwizard likes this.
  12. KramerBassFan


    Jan 3, 2009
    AKA Enough Volume to be heard in a band, and have "Bass".
  13. Corevalay

    Corevalay Supporting Member

    Sep 10, 2009
    New Jersey
    I'd like to revive this thread...

    Recently I plugged into my 2x12 guitar cab using my GK 800 RB. It sounded awesome. The Vintage 30's gave the bass a great tone and I'd love to start using this as a bass cab. However, I am worried I'm going to blow it and ruin my guitar cab! I realize everyone says not to do it, but isn't a speaker a speaker at some point? I don't plan on cranking the hell out of the amp.

  14. No - it is NOT

    Soumitravichare, vmabus and Phil508 like this.
  15. Phil508


    Feb 19, 2012
    Central MASS
    Bass into Guitar amp with Guitar speakers= POOF
    Bass into Bass Amp into Guitar speakers= QUICKER POOF
    Bass into bass amp into bass speakers= YES
    Guitar into Bass amp with Bass speakers= YES (If you haven't tried it a guitar into an SVT is almost as good as a Marshall stack (at high volumes))

    Disclaimer..... you can play a bass thru anything at very low volume, once you get cranking ....POOF unless its made for bass.
    Plus if you abuse any bass amp it could go POOF.

    Think of it like this , stuffing 4 SVTs and cabs into a VW Beatle, it may go down the road, but something bad will happen.
    Corevalay likes this.
  16. vmabus


    Nov 1, 2013
    If you compare the specs sheets of similar bass and guitar speakers, you'll see marked differences in the designs. That's not to say it can't work; special speakers for bass are a fairly recent innovation. However, given the high power of modern bass amps, the chance of doing severe damage to your guitar speakers is greatly increased. It was easier in the olden days, when high power was a 100-watt tube amp. Consider a solution of replacing the guitar speakers with something more robust and suitable for bass. This can still work for guitar, providing the speakers are reasonably efficient. Remember, you've got 300 watts into a 60-watt cab...
  17. schub


    Mar 5, 2019
    I had an Ampeg V6B in the 70's. 15"'s in a inverted horn cab I think. Screaming guitar amp.
    I have a Bob Moog designed Lab Series L7 100 watt 4-10".
    Play synth bass thru it all day long. Shakes the house windows. Bass guitar and Les Paul sounds good thru it to.

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