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Did guitarist toast my tweeter?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by IamGroot, Apr 14, 2019 at 8:23 PM.

  1. Bad title but...

    The guitarist's tube amp died on a gig a month ago and I let him use my Aguilar GS 210 (rated 350 watts) with a MB Little Mark II (rated 300 watts). He didnt play it full out.

    Did not use that rig until last night and I think the tweeter is shot

    Coincidence or Act of Guitarist?
    Lobster11 likes this.
  2. MattZilla


    Jun 26, 2013
    A fuzz pedal will feed more info to a tweeter than even the most jangly active bass...

    But it was probably just ready to crap out anyways. Are you 100% certain that it wasn't dead before you let him use it?
  3. If it was on while he played through it & it's a piezo tweeter, it's toast.
    Assuming he plays with high gain & distortion.
    IamGroot likes this.
  4. BogeyBass


    Sep 14, 2010
    Or the L pad finally melted.
    From being nailed at a low setting all it's life.

    Tweeter... smeeter

    Easier blame the Guitar guy anyways.

    And it's almost certain anytime you lend out or borrow equipment. Whatever part was about to die.....does
    IamGroot likes this.
  5. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa, Product Support-Genz Benz
    Likely that the guitar took out the tweeter.
    Aqualung60, AstroSonic and IamGroot like this.
  6. Thank you. May I ask why.

    BTW, very glad you stopped by.
    agedhorse likes this.
  7. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa, Product Support-Genz Benz
    There is much more energy present with guitar in the frequency band that the tweeter operates, and even more when the guitar is distorted.
  8. I know it's an unpopular position on TB, but I tend to agree with this sentiment. Anyone ever seen a guitar amp with a tweeter?
  9. Rick James

    Rick James

    Feb 24, 2007
    New Jersey
    Guitar amps don't have tweeters because they'll blow with the high frequency signal content of electric guitar. That applies to all tweeters, not just piezos.
  10. I think you missed my point. It's certainly possible to put a horn driver in a guitar amplifier system that won't burn up, it's just that there is no need for one. And if the guitar doesn't need it....
    Killed_by_Death likes this.
  11. Rick James

    Rick James

    Feb 24, 2007
    New Jersey
    Possible yes, logical no. With a normal signal the power density drops by one-half with each octave increase in frequency. Because of that a tweeter will only receive maybe 5 watts of a 100 watt full range signal. With the highly compressed and clipped signal of electric guitar instead of 5 watts the tweeter could receive 50 watts of a 100 watt full range signal. So instead of a tweeter rated to work with a 100 watt full range signal you'd need one rated to work with a 1000 watt full range signal even though the amp is 100 watts.
    I get what you're saying about neither electric guitar nor electric bass needing a tweeter that goes higher than 8 kHz. But that's a different question entirely.
    IamGroot likes this.
  12. First of all, no HF unit, compression driver or otherwise, can handle more than a few watts of a full-range signal. The crossover is there to restrict the pass band. But if your calculation were valid, then no one would ever be able to mic a guitar amp through a big PA, which I can promise you only has HF units rated at about 100 watts or so...maybe even less.
    agedhorse likes this.
  13. Paulabass

    Paulabass Supporting Member

    Sep 18, 2017
    Tweeters hate guitarists. #rule- use the right tool for the job.
    Aqualung60 likes this.
  14. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa, Product Support-Genz Benz
    For a PA with heavy distorted guitar, it's not uncommon to derate power handling when putting together a PA for touring purposes, but maybe by only 50% due to the increased sensitivity that offsets SOME of the additional in band power difference.
  15. Rick James

    Rick James

    Feb 24, 2007
    New Jersey
    The calculation is valid, and by no means new, it's been known for 90 odd years. It's why speakers are tested using pink noise, which drops in power density by a half (-3dB) with each frequency increase of one octave. It's not the problem with PA as it is with a guitar amp, because the PA doesn't take its signal from the guitar amp, it takes it from the mic in front of the guitar amp. Even so care is taken with PA systems to keep the signal from getting clipped, lest the increased high frequency harmonics cause power density to kill the high frequency drivers from over powering. Back in the days when 50 watts was a big amp this was a real problem, leading to this, http://www.jblpro.com/pub/technote/lowpower.pdf, which also led to the myth of under powering when people reading it ignored the key phrase 'high frequency components'.
  16. So are you saying that the speaker-to-mic interface into a PA changes the harmonic content so that the tweeters are able to handle the waveform better? I'm not sure I agree with that. One CAN plug an electric guitar, distortion and all, directly into a PA input and turn it up to the point of pain...most well-designed systems would handle that, I think.

    But all of that is beside the point I was trying to make, which was if an electric guitar amplification system, with all that HF harmonic content, doesn't need a specialized HF transducer like a compression driver, I'm not sure why it's necessary for a bass rig. As I said, I know that's not a popular position on TB.

    So feel free to attack on that front...I think I've still got that old flame-suit around here somewhere. :smug:

    And apologies to the OP for the digression. I do think it's likely that the gee-tar player fritzed your tweet.
    IamGroot likes this.
  17. Guitalia


    Jun 7, 2008
    Baltimore, MD
    Continuing the guitar-amps-with-tweeters digression, mid-'60s solid-state Thomas Organ Vox guitar amps, such as the Super Beatle, Royal Guardsman, Buckingham, etc., were equipped with high-frequency drivers and horns, most of which were disconnected and/or removed by users.

    I have a couple of those, and also (not my picture) a Gibson Les Paul LP-1 preamp/powered cabinet with four 12-inch speakers and two 10-inch University horns:

    Mingo Sanders and Heavy Blue like this.
  18. Look on the bright side; your amp will now sound better!

    Max Bogosity and FenderB like this.
  19. I bet those dual-reentrant conical paging horns added just the right amount of pizzazz to that sound.;)

    IIRC, Kustom offered some speaker cabinets in their familiar three-driver design, with a large conical horn instead of the top 15". But I didn't know the Vox amps had horns...of course, the last time I saw a Super-Beatle in the wild was about 1967. I know AC30's definitely didn't. But Vox did grow out of an organ company, where 2-way speaker systems were not uncommon. And I wonder if some of those monstrous old cabs weren't intended to have some appeal as PA speakers...I know Marshall had some 812 cabs that were marketed for that purpose. No horns in them, though. And before someone else points it out, I'll acknowledge that there ARE some specialty guitar amps aimed at acoustic players that do have tweeters of some sort in them.

    But as we see, it wasn't something that actually caught on too well...maybe guit-fiddle players save their $ for the next, latest-and-greatest pedal.
  20. AudioTaper


    Sep 23, 2018
    First thing I thought of while reading this thread Screenshot_20190415-140458_Google.

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