getting the most out of an amp? (help with settings)

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Bill Brasky, Jul 22, 2001.

  1. I've done some searching on this with not much luck, so if anyone can point me to any past threads or articles anywhere, that would be great (but any replies here are also much appreciated). My question is, with so many different settings for volume control between the bass and amp, what do they need to be at to get the most volume out of it?

    In my case: I have a EB stingray 5 (active) plugged into the active input jack of my Carvin RC210 (600 watt) combo. I have the 18" cab added onto this combo, but the majority of the time, I'll just be using the 2x10 combo alone. The controls I have to choose from are the volume control on the bass itself, the gain control, the two power amp control knobs, and the master volume.

    Typically, I will play with medium and sometimes more aggressive playing style, so the gain should be low i guess (like maybe 30-50%?). I saw someone mention in another thread that the volume on the bass guitar should be up like 75-100% to provide a strong signal to the amplifier, but would that be similar to having the gain up really high and probably cause clipping? I can see how having the volume too low would put a big damper on the available power coming out of the amp, but will it still provide a clean signal with the volume cranked up all the way on the guitar?

    Regarding the power amp control knobs, should they be all the way up at 10 or would that be too much (like having the gain cranked all the way up) and possibly damage the speakers?

    And a question (or two) for other RC210 owners: When you're running the amp bridged and full range, do you still have control over the power amp? I tried adjusting the high and low power amp knobs and didn't notice any difference. If you're running just the 2x10 cabinet alone on the 600w head, do you run it in bridged mode or something else? And when you're using the 2x10 alone, are you in danger of overpowering it with the 600w head? I've had this amp for a few years now, and I really like it, but i'm about to have to replace one or two of the 10" speakers, and I think it's probably because of having some of the settings too high when just using the 2x10 cabinet alone.

    thanks to anyone who has taken the time to read all this.
  2. FalsehoodBass


    Jul 22, 2001
    Denver, CO
    I'll try to answer a few...
    ok first turn your bass all the way up.. and the gain on the amp all the way down.. then playing the hardest that you normally would.. turn the gain up just until you see the peak light turn on. Then you're good.
    As far as controlling the amps in bridge mode.. just use the volume knob and it will turn both amps up at the same time. Pressing the bridge switch disables the individual amp control.
  3. yeah, i've been away from TB for a while, so they've kind of been building up :D
  4. I agree with Falsehood, you want to have the instrument volume all the way up. That way the amp has a good clear signal to work with. Then adjust the Gain until it is right below the clip mark, but remember that the preamp also needs a fairly strong signal to work with so you do not want to leave that low but, you also want to make sure that you are not clipping. You might not want to try this without other verification, but I think you would want the poweramp controls fairly low, between 25%-40% and then turn the Master Volume up to the level you want it at.