Dismiss Notice

Psst... Ready to join TalkBass and start posting, make new friends, sell your gear, and more?  Register your free account in 30 seconds.

Chainable power amp??

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by thumbman, Nov 8, 2005.


  1. thumbman

    thumbman Love that low end

    Nov 2, 2005
    Melbourne, Australia
    hey guys,

    I remember in my internet prowling i saw a power amp that had an ability to chain with other power amps. could anyone tell me if they know of a power amp with this ability and how it works.

    It just seems weird because then wouldnt the signal be too large for the input of the next power amp...i dont know, all i know is that i saw it and can't remember where.

    Any help would be awesome.
     
  2. Most amps have a "line out" that can be hooked up to another amp. This feature delivers a signal approximately 1 volt that can be fed to other equipment. This is called a "line level" signal.

    So let's say you have a 300 watt amp. You can go from the "line out" to any other amp, it doesn't matter whether the second amp is 5 watts or 500 watts. You can plug the "line out" into a PA even.

    But you can't go from the first amp's "speaker out" into another amp. The speaker level output is going to be around 40 volts give or take, with 300 watts of power, and you can't plug that into a mixer or another amp's input, without damaging one or both pieces of equipment.
     
  3. ESP-LTD

    ESP-LTD

    Sep 9, 2001
    Idaho
    I believe that Mackie 1400's would do that. BUT- the chaining aspect means that you put a 1v signal into the amp, and then take a 1v signal out of the amp to go to the next amp. The output sections are completely independent and you are not getting any sort of magic power gain.
     
  4. thumbman

    thumbman Love that low end

    Nov 2, 2005
    Melbourne, Australia
    What if i had say 2 500w poweramps powering the one speaker. A speaker has several inputs, so what if you used 2 outputs from two amps to get the power??
     
  5. jokerjkny

    jokerjkny

    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PA
    holy crap,

    no one replied back to thumb, telling him he's gonna kill himself if he does this? :rolleyes:

    thumb, that's not a good idea, and if anything, go to your local music shop and learn thee the ways of the power amp.

    a speaker cab should only see ONE POWER AMP. never more than one. you can daisy change a bunch of speakers to one power amp, but NEVER EVER NEVER the other way around.

    kapisch?
     
  6. thejohnkim

    thejohnkim

    Sep 30, 2003
    NYC
    unless it is this very special type of speaker cabinet that is actually 2 seperate enclosures stuck together made for bi-amping, with a switch that says "biamp <-> passive"

    the only "chaining" you can do with poweramps is using a "pass-through" type output jack that transmits the same signal that you're inputting (the non amplified signal) so that you can re-use that input into another amp

    so again, you can't combine the power of mutiple amps into the same speaker enclosure
     
  7. Trevorus

    Trevorus

    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    Fender makes a chainable power amp now.
     
  8. tadawson

    tadawson

    Aug 24, 2005
    Lewisville, TX
    One speaker or one cabinet? A speaker has exactly one set of terminals, and you can't share amps (fire, smoke, death kind of stuff in most cases . . . )

    A cabinet MAY have multiple inputs, or it may just have two jacks wired to the SAME input. Case in point - I have heard of 8x10s that can be powered as two 4x10s, in which case, you can use two amps. Not really chaining - this is electrically identical to two amps, two separate cabs. If you only have two jacks, it's the same as a single speaker, typically the fire, smoke . . . etc.

    - Tim
     
  9. Tash

    Tash

    Feb 13, 2005
    Bel Air Maryland
    The SVP1600 from Ampeg has both XLR in and a non powered XLR out so you can chain a bunch of them together.
     
  10. tadawson

    tadawson

    Aug 24, 2005
    Lewisville, TX
    That chains the INPUTS, it does nothing for the outputs, which is what I think this guy was asking . . . . . . . otherwise, why discuss cabinets? Hopefully, the original poster will clarify. What you are talking about, btw, on the input side, is possible on any amp - you just may not have a split built into the amp. Look at a typical large PA systems - many (10's or more) of amps on each drive channel, and not necessarily with any "chain" jack on the amps . . . that is just a convienience like two 1/4" jacks on a speaker cab - easier, but not necessary.

    - Tim
     
  11. I think he's talking about "slaving" two amps.
     
  12. thumbman

    thumbman Love that low end

    Nov 2, 2005
    Melbourne, Australia
    getting out of hand...lol

    All i rememeberd was looking aroung at websites and i saw chain out or something similar and it made me think

    If i got a small amp now, could i then just add another small amp later?...as it turns out, NO. I'll just have to sell a few more body parts and work a few more hours untill i can afford everything all at once...
     
  13. Tash

    Tash

    Feb 13, 2005
    Bel Air Maryland
    Actually there are a couple ways you could acheive this. The easiest would be to get a head or combo with a direct out. Its a common feature on a number of amps. This would allow you to set up a second stack later using a large power amp and a second cabinet. You'd run the small amps direct out into the power amp and the power amp into the cabinet. Essentially you'd have two rigs at this point: one small, one large, not unlike having a PA.
     
  14. tadawson

    tadawson

    Aug 24, 2005
    Lewisville, TX
    I was specifically commenting on this:

    Which didn't sound much like slaving . . . . . at least not on the output side. Whatever . . . . .

    - Tim