Beginner question

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Tama, Jul 27, 2009.

  1. Tama


    Nov 19, 2008
    I know I'm putting the cart in front of the horse, but I have a question.

    "On average" will a 100 watt amp with...say...2-10" or 12" speakers be big enough for most small clubs?

    Most small clubs being maybe 1000 square footage.

    This is assuming the rest of your equipment isn't huge and over-powering to the aforementioned amp.

    Though I'm a million miles away from worrying about it, the question would help me in more ways than one.
    Thanks, Dave
  2. MIJ-VI

    MIJ-VI Inactive Supporting Member

    Jan 12, 2009
    Figure out how many watts - and speaker surface area + cab size - that you'll think you need--then at least double it.

    A loud amp can always be turned down and still sound good.

    A quiet amp can't be turned up without settling for a different outcome...
  3. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG
    It all depends on the music. If you're doing light music like jazz standards or low volume popular music gigs, it's fine. If you're doing medium volume pop/rock music, it might top it out but it would probably work for most gigs. If you're doing louder gigs, it would probably struggle.
  4. SLIV


    Jul 16, 2009
    North Carolina, USA
    Hi Dave. Like Jimmy said, it really depends on the kind of music you guys are playing more so than the size of the venue. Really big venues will have big PAs that will take care of you; small clubs will have small PAs that will only do vocals and (maybe) kick.

    Honestly, I'd get at least 200 watts. Remember that if you're using a single cabinet, an 8 ohm will be less loud than a 4 ohm one no matter which amp you use. You want to be able to hear yourself well with a full band and your amp turned up no more than halfway. There are exceptions to this but its a good rule of thumb.

    Good luck.
  5. Dogbertday

    Dogbertday Commercial User

    Jul 10, 2007
    SE Wisconsin
    Blaine Music LLC

    +1 about the club size being proportional to the PA size... big clubs are fine(PA supports everything)... real little ones would be fine (so small that pushing anything but vocals would overpower the room)... it's the in between ones you have to worry about.

    I say it COULD work for you but you need your amp off the ground and a relatively quiet band. I would shoot for 200watts minimum as well. even though my main player the last year has been a 100watt 1x15 combo.. but I didn't play anywhere too loud
  6. RickenBoogie


    Jul 22, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    I'd say, no, don't buy a combo amp. Bass is tricky, and needs alot more power than anything else. Look for something like a 300 watt head, and a spkr cab no less than 2 12's, or 4 10's. That way, you know you're good.
  7. René_Julien


    Jun 26, 2008
    I gotta agree with this.

    For volume dispersion that will cover a lot of venues, get a 4x10" cab.
    Cheap or expensive, light or heavy... there is choice enough.
    And combine it with an amphead... cheap or expensive, light or heavy....

    Although there might also be some 15" combos that can get the job done, in worst case getting two the same 15" combos.
    That comes down to taste.

    A 4x10 is always the safest bet.
  8. RobertPaulson


    Dec 11, 2008
    Des Moines
    I personally would not go with anything under 300 watts (if you're going solid state, tube is another story). It *may* work for small clubs, but you'll almost certainly need to upgrade at some point. I'm partial to 4x10 cabs myself, but a 2x12 or 1x15 would do you just fine.
  9. Tama


    Nov 19, 2008
    Man !!!
    Some great advise here. The more I think about it, the more I am leaning towards a separate cab and amp head setup. I can get a deal on speaks and build my own cab. The head isn't too much trouble either. I've seen good working 400w name-brand amps in my price budget.

    Again, I am very, very far away from worrying about playing out with a bass. I still work at my drums....probably will NEVER be satisfied.

    But it wouldn't hurt to have a decent setup in case I hook up with someone who needs a little help with equipment.
    I keep a Dean 6 string electric guitar here at my house so when people come over, they can play with me.

    Surprisingly, the Dean is a cheap guitar but I got the action & intonation set up perfect. And, it holds a tune as well as much more expensive guitars.

    So, I'm leaning towards 300+ watt head, a 4X10" cab.

    Will post when I get it together.
    Thanks all. I really appreciate your help and willingness to share your experience with me.

    Cheers, Dave
  10. MIJ-VI

    MIJ-VI Inactive Supporting Member

    Jan 12, 2009
    He's a DRUMMER! GET 'IM!!! :bag: :D
  11. Personally, I WOULD NOT count on any club/venue providing PA support.

    It all depends on where you live.

    In my area, no clubs have any PA. Bands have to provide not only their own PA, but also lights. far as power goes:

    General rule of thumb is to use 3 or 4X the total guitar power.

    I would go for minimum 300-400 watts in the head, and start with either a 2X12 or 4X10 cab.
  12. UncleBalsamic


    Jul 8, 2007
    Also depends on the sensitivity of the cabs.