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Gain amount on an Ampeg preamp

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by mrmoore, Sep 21, 2008.

  1. mrmoore


    Jul 19, 2005
    I recently purchased a used Ampeg SVP-PRO preamp and I coupled that to a Carvin power amp bridged at 600 W. Cabinet is an Ampeg classic 410HLF. The manual with the preamp suggested turning up the gain to the point that the peak light starts to flash. I get the flash with the gain only barely (1/4 maybe) open, and turn down the master. If I use the input pad (-15DB), the gain has to go to about half open for roughly the same output. Is there an advantage either way, or is gain simply gain? Confused yet?

  2. levis76

    levis76 Seconds from getting ba...

    Apr 14, 2007
    Metro Detroit
    I use the same preamp. I do not use the input pad and turn down my bass' volume to a little above halfway, its passive though. This allows me to turn the gain up a bit more before the lamp lites. I find that if I use the input pad, I lose some of the high end from my signal. Also, the drive knob effects how much clean gain you have available. I like to overdrive the tubes just a bit, so I get some grind when I dig in. The red light is almost constantly lit if you are overdriving the tubes, so it isn't a bad thing if it's lit. It may shorten your tubes life a bit. Just try tweaking the bass volume, gain, and drive to find what you are looking for and don't worry too much about that red light.
  3. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    Gain is simply gain. The input pad attenuates the input. All you're doing is turning it down and then turning it back up. The only advantage to using the pad is if your instrument signal distorts the preamp and you don't want it to.
  4. Rick Auricchio

    Rick Auricchio Registered Bass Offender

    Use the pad. It allows you to operate the gain knob in a region where there's more room to adjust it. Doing so may also place the first-stage preamp in a better area of its operating range.

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