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converting an old guitar amp to a bass amp?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by deepestend, Dec 10, 2003.


  1. deepestend

    deepestend Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 21, 2003
    Brooklyn via Austin and NOLA
    Guitar/Bass Builder and Social Media at Sadowsky
    Hey,

    I've got an old Ampeg G-18 solid state guitar amp that I use to practice at home:
    http://www.wintersound.com/images/ampegg18.jpg

    I don't need that much volume and it does seem to do the trick. The only problem is that the speaker really buzzes at high volumes and I'm sure it's gonna blow one day. I'd like to just switch out the 8 inch speaker for something that is heavier duty to prevent this from happenning. Is it worth it? Is it going to stop the buzzing? Is it going to kill any "value" the amp has (it's a 70's solid state thing). Any reccomendations on speakers to buy?

    thanks!

    J-R
     
  2. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Bettendorf, IA USA
    Those G18s were actually decent sounding little guitar amps. It would be a pity to kill it playing bass through it!!!

    Actually, it likely won't do anything to the amplifier section. As you mentioned, it is the speaker that it will kill.

    You could probably find an 8" woofer that will handle the power and fit in the hole. I would expect it to sound even worse than it does now.

    If you insist on using it, I would go ahead and change the speaker now, rather than waiting until you fry the original. I would not cut or alter the cabinet in any way to fit a different driver. That way, you always can make it whole again if you so choose.
     
  3. deepestend

    deepestend Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 21, 2003
    Brooklyn via Austin and NOLA
    Guitar/Bass Builder and Social Media at Sadowsky
    why do you think it would sound worse if I put in another speaker? I don't normally play it at volumes that make it sound like it's going to fry... I'm just concerned tha the cumulative low notes are going to eventually take their toll.
     
  4. Gabu

    Gabu

    Jan 2, 2001
    Lake Elsinore, CA
    The speaker will have a large effect on the tone. But like Chasarms said, it doesn't hurt to pop it out, try a bass woofer, and listen. It might sound really good... It might not.
     
  5. deepestend

    deepestend Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 21, 2003
    Brooklyn via Austin and NOLA
    Guitar/Bass Builder and Social Media at Sadowsky
    I've never done this before. Any speaker suggestions?
     
  6. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Bettendorf, IA USA
    Because the speaker that is in it is likely a paper-thin, small-coil, light-magnet, ancient Eminence. Sure, it sounds like poo when you crank a bass through it, but it is also highly efficient and does a great job of replicating the higher harmonics and other coloration of the tone of the bass.

    A woofer is much less efficient and is primarily designed to handle the lows (high excursion) It will likely make less volume with the same power, so you'll push the amp harder (SS distortion sounds really bad) and it will not reproduce the transients as well. In addition, most woofers are designed to work within a certain volume, controlled airspacem, either sealed or ported. They drop performance quickly outside correct parameters.
     
  7. deepestend

    deepestend Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 21, 2003
    Brooklyn via Austin and NOLA
    Guitar/Bass Builder and Social Media at Sadowsky
    What about just using a heavier duty guitar speaker? Does such a thing exist? Is there any point.
     
  8. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Bettendorf, IA USA
    Maybe, but the speaker would cost more than the endevour is probably worth. Why not get a decent little practice amp. There is at least a dozen at MF for less than $100. Nearly all of which would sound better than your 10W beauty that you have now. Why not preserve it for what it is? I'd buy it.
     
  9. deepestend

    deepestend Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 21, 2003
    Brooklyn via Austin and NOLA
    Guitar/Bass Builder and Social Media at Sadowsky
    You've got a good point there. I just wanted to explore the possibilties.