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Hartke KILO Overheating - Help!

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by bassphreak, Aug 18, 2013.

  1. I know there is not a lot of KILO users out there and have seen reports of KILOs running really hot. I used mine at a gig last night and the amp was very hot (hot to the touch). I was driving it harder than other gigs but have noticed that it was running really warm recently at practice. I have the KILO in a 4 space Gator case. I have an open space and vented grill in front.

    It also started to emit a strong smell of hot wires/circuitry that had me worried. Again it started to smell at a few practices but I had been using a different (and much lighter) amp recently.

    I did search and see that there are a few threads that talk about the heat issue with the KILO. Some said this amp runs really hot. I saw a reference that this amp can and will get very hot? But not sure.

    I'm going to check the fans better at home where it's quiet. I'm also going to call Hartke tomorrow and see how hot the KILO should get.

    My questions are:

    1. how concerned should I be?
    2. how hot is too hot?
    3. should I take it out of the rack? is there a recommended rack?
    4. Is there a better fan(s) for it?

    It's a great amp and apart from the weight it delivers the power and tone that I want.

    Any help or thoughts would be greatly appreciated. thanks.
  2. Sounds like you have enough ventilation. I would see what Hartke has to say. If you can get a first degree burn by touching it (3 second hold), stop using until you hear from them.
  3. Not quite a first degree burn but it was hotter than any amp I've been around and was emitting a strong electronics smell.
  4. It might well have a problem. The smell could also be the non-VOC solvent residue releasing. The solvents used these days have a distressing smell, but with a couple months of moderately hard use will be gone.

    There has been cases of people getting warranty service (on many brands) due to the burning smell only to find out nothing was wrong it was just burn off of solvents.
    Don't worry too hard till Hartke says there is a reason to is what I am offering here. :)
  5. BassmanPaul

    BassmanPaul Gold Supporting Member

    Aug 25, 2007
    Toronto Ontario Canada
    +1 to Mr B's response. When I hear of a concern such as this one, I always wonder what sort of a load was the amp working into. So what cabinets did you have connected and what are their impedances??

    Edit: How does the amp ventilate?
  6. Metalbasspro


    Feb 9, 2009
    Sounds bad! The smell would have me taking it in for a check up.

    My GK 800rb got hot but it was normal hot. I took to using an external fan that clipped on the back of the rack. Kept it a little cooler and the sound more stable for a 40 minute set.
  7. BassmanPaul

    BassmanPaul Gold Supporting Member

    Aug 25, 2007
    Toronto Ontario Canada
    Just read through the owners manual. It says that the top and both side should be unobstructed when mounted. It's a 3U unit and I fear that a 4U rack will not allow the airflow that the amp needs.

    Edit: May I suggest that you remove the amp from the rack and try it stand alone to see if it then runs cooler.
  8. Yeah. I read through that too and why I asked. I'll run it at next practice without the case.
  9. Also. I run it bridged at 4 ohms to an ampeg svt410hlf cab. It's 4ohm can.
  10. Total kick butt setup.
  11. BassmanPaul

    BassmanPaul Gold Supporting Member

    Aug 25, 2007
    Toronto Ontario Canada
    Good deal! Please come back and update us on what transpires.
  12. BassmanPaul

    BassmanPaul Gold Supporting Member

    Aug 25, 2007
    Toronto Ontario Canada
    Things are beginning to make a little more sense. You're dropping 1KW into a 500W THERMAL cabinet. The cabinet can probably use about half of that 500W in real life. If you need to get more volume and run the amp at less than it's limit I feel you should get a second identical cabinet and run them one from each output channel. More speakers gets you further than more power.
  13. It's only 700w at 4 ohms. The cab can easily handle. I wasn't cranked. Volume at 1 0'clock.

    How would that overheat the head?

    Thanks for all the responses.
  14. Any kilo users ?
  15. Volume knob positions does not equal power output and at 1:00 on the master you could very well be at or past the maximum clean output power. It is all dependant on the gain level of the preamp and the type of taper used in the volume pot.
    If you would have said 9:00 I would say chances are good the amp was just cruising. ;)
  16. You wrote previously that you run the amp in bridged mode. The Kilo can put out 1000W into 4Ω when bridged.

    The SVT-410HLF is rated to handle 500W. It might keep the amp cooler if you connect the cabinet to just one side of the amp - NOT bridged.
  17. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Sorry to correct you in front of everyone Paul, but the 410hlf is 500w displacement limited, and pretty sure that 1000w is the wattage it takes to blow speakers.

    And while the Kilo would probably work less hot if it were only running one side, there's something about the major headroom of a bridged hi-watt amp that I never really appreciated a whole lot till recently.
  18. Thanks everyone. I'm not sure where I got 700w bridged.

    I'm thinking along the lines of Jimmy Bridging may be a contributor. While head is throwing out a lot more power and certainly has the ability overpower the cab, I don't think that is the issue. I'll run one side at next practice and keep my eyes on it.

    Seems like a really heave 350w head then :) I'm still going to reach out to Hartke and see what I should expect.

    Thanks again all.
    Phlipper likes this.
  19. BassmanPaul

    BassmanPaul Gold Supporting Member

    Aug 25, 2007
    Toronto Ontario Canada
    Hey Jimmy - I EXPECT to be corrected if I say something that is wrong. It's how I learn. :D

    Still potentially feeding the cabinet with twice as much power than it can use is not such a good idea IMHO.

    To answer the OP about bridging, each channel "sees" half the load. In this case, 4Ω, that's 2Ω. This allows the channel to send 500W into the load. Meanwhile the other channel is doing the same thing. As the second channel is working with a reverse polarity, the two signals merge to give 1000W. If all of that power is being used the amplifier is working as hard as it is able and is at it's limits. That's where the heat comes from.
  20. Zoomie


    Jan 26, 2012
    East Tennessee
    I ran a Kilo for a few months. I could warm the thing up lighting up my Dually cab but I would never call it hot. And I did have mine housed in a 4 space rack.

    The hot part concerns me. Depending on ventilation, stage temperature, outdoor direct sunlight, you could drive it in to thermal overload where it shuts itself down.

    If you're not going to have Samson tech take a look at it, you should take a back up with you at all times or you may find yourself playing an acoustic ! :p