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Cable from preamp pedal to powered speaker?

Discussion in 'Live Sound [BG]' started by Subersibo, Jan 30, 2018.

  1. If I use a preamp/pedal’s di out to connect to the pa what kind of cable do I use to connect from the pedal to the input of a powered speaker? I want to try this setup instead of using a regular bass amp. I’ve read threads on this subject but didn’t read about what cable to use in this situation.
    Just a regular instrument cable, a speaker cable, or a trs cable?

    I am using a seymour duncan paranormal di. My powered speaker is an alto ts112a 800 watts.
  2. Stumbo

    Stumbo Wherever you go, there you are. Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 11, 2008
    the Cali Intergalctic Mind Space
    Song Surgeon slow downer software- full 4 hour demo
    ALTO ts112a 800 watts.

    Transducer Low: 12” Woofer, with 2” voice coil
    Transducer High: Neodymium compression driver, 1” exit with 1” voice coil
    Power Amplification: 800 Watts peak (670 W LF + 130 W HF), 400 Watts continuous (335 W LF + 65 W HF)
    Frequency Range (-10 dB): 54 Hz - 20 kHz
    Frequency Response (±3 dB): 65 Hz - 19 kHz
    Maximum SPL @ 1m: 125 dB peak, 122 dB continuous
    -6 dB Nominal Coverage: (80° / 100° H x 60° V)
    Active Crossover: 2.5 kHz
    Connectors: 2 x Mic / Line Female XLR - 1/4” combo inputs, 1 x Loop - Out Male XLR
    Input Control: Line / Mic -∞ to +50 dB, Maximum input level +23 dBu, Input Impedance 15 kOhms
    External Controls: Volume, Power switch with LED indicator, Clip/Limit LED, Ground Lift switch
    Protection Features: Over-excursion, Thermal, Driver
    AC Power: 100 VAC, or 110 – 120 VAC, or 220 - 240 VAC (50 / 60 Hz)
    Enclosure: Trapezoidal, with floor monitor capability. Injection molded, polypropylene enclosure, with perforated steel grille
    Mounting: Integrated pole-socket (36 mm dia.) Two handles, 5 M10 threaded sockets: 2 top, 2 bottom, 1 pullback
    Dimensions (WxLxH): 15in x 14.3in x 25.5in
    Weight: 35 lb

    You'll most likely need an HPF to control the low end and protect the speakers.

  3. Never use speaker cable for line level connections.

    You didn’t tell us what preamp-pedal you’re using to verify what it’s DI output is. If the DI output is XLR, use a mic cable to the speaker. If it’s 1/4" use a standard guitar cable. The Also has combination input jacks – dead center of the jack you can use a 1/4” plug.

    Wayne A. Pflughaupt

    Ecclesia: Unique Arrangements of Hymns, P&W Standards, and Original Tunes
    Administrator, Pedulla Club #45
    Administrator, Tobias Club #133
    Fretless Club #943
    Big Cabs Club #23
    My Rig: Stage and FOH Friendly
    My Basses

    Bob Lee (QSC) and Ethereal Thorn like this.
  4. I did mention it: a Seymour Duncan paranormal preamp/di. It’s not a very well known unit I guess. I do use an xlr cable for the di out going to the PA.
    It also has a regular 1/4” to go into an amp. I’ll just use a regular guitar cable like you mentioned. Thanks for the info!

    Also, would a mixer’s out to powered speaker be considered line- level connection or could I use a speaker cable to connect?
  5. Subersibo and s0c9 like this.
  6. Yes.
    My bass does sound pretty good with the alto when I go through the preamp into a mixer but I’ll test it out just using the preamp straight into it. Again, thanks for your help.

  7. DonaldR


    Mar 26, 2012
    Your Alto TS112 has a builtin mixer, so do the same as you do with external mixer. If you are using an XLR cable to the mixer, then use an XLR cable to the TS112.
    Subersibo likes this.
  8. I did a little experiment and connected both the xlr out (via xlr cable) and line out (using instrument cable) from the preamp pedal to the 2 inputs of the alto and it sounded huge! I think I'll use it this way for gigs where I don't go thru the mains.
    I wouldn't be damaging the speaker in this way would I?
  9. 4Mal

    4Mal Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Columbia River Gorge
    I take my Preamp to the board and an aux to my powered speaker. XLR board to speak. That lets me mix some kick and guitar into it as well. I like it a lot.

  10. It’s mainly just an increase in volume compared to using a single cable. You can get the same effect by simply using one cable and increasing the volume knob.

    The speaker isn’t made for bass specifically and probably can’t be played as loud as a good bass cabinet. But in smaller venues at reasonable volumes it should be okay.

    Wayne A. Pflughaupt

    Ecclesia: Unique Arrangements of Hymns, P&W Standards, and Original Tunes
    Administrator, Pedulla Club #45
    Administrator, Tobias Club #133
    Fretless Club #943
    Big Cabs Club #23
    My Rig: Stage and FOH Friendly
    My Basses

  11. DonaldR


    Mar 26, 2012
    Is there a low cut switch or high-pass filter on the Alto? If so use it to be on the safe side and play as loud as you want. If no HPF or DSP to control the low-end then don't play full volume or use your ears to not fry the woofer.
  12. 4Mal

    4Mal Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Columbia River Gorge
    This is one reason I go to the mixer first. Each channel has HPF, LPF, 4 band parametric eq, comp,gate, etc... Soundcraft Ui-24r. 20 in 10 auxes plus mains out... mix from anything that supports html5. Amazing sound quality... $795 from a number of SC dealers... I’ve Paid more for bass preamps...
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2018
    DonaldR likes this.
  13. el murdoque

    el murdoque

    Mar 10, 2013
    It actually is quite easy:
    Instrument level and line level use the same cables, regular 1/4" mono jacks.
    These cables are well shielded, because the signal is unbalanced which means that any interference that gets into the signal while it travels through the cable will remain there, and what's worse - the interference will be amplified along with the signal.

    Balanced cables (XLR from a balanced out to a balanced in) will cancel out interference. That's why they are used for long distances (from the stage to the mixer).

    Loudspeaker cables have different needs. They carry serious juice, therefore they need more diameter.
    Shielding is not necessary, because the signal is at maximum and will be used to drive the speakers, so interference is so minimal you won't hear any of it.

    So if you use speaker cables to connect line level signal you risk noise.
    If you use line level cables to connect speakers, you risk to let the precious smoke that is inside each technical component escape. Apart from burning down the house, you risk to damage the cables and the components connected.
    4 Out of 5 likes this.
  14. DonaldR


    Mar 26, 2012

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