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How important is a tweeter?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by spectorbass83, Oct 4, 2005.

  1. spectorbass83


    Jun 6, 2005
    I am looking at a GK 4x10 cab, the price is right but the only downside is that it does not have a tweeter. How important is a tweeter in a 4x10 cab? The amp that is being sold with this rig is a GK 1001 RB and it has the tweeter boost (50W@8ohm). It sure would be nice to use the boost feature but the amp does not have a tweeter...should I just accept that and buy it since its a good price? Both units are used but in good condition.
    Any input would be appreciated :cool:
  2. Petebass


    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    If you're a slapper, a tapper, or play with a pick occasionally, a tweeter comes in handy. If you don't do any of these, you'll probably never miss it.

    If it turns out you need one, it's not hard or expensive to add one yourself. The hardest part is the crossover. You could go the easy option and buy a pre-made one. Or if you're in the mood for a DIY project, we can help you make your own one.
  3. If you like hiss, you absolutely need a tweeter also. Otherwise, what Pete said.

  4. The tweeter wont make any hissing noises if your amp and bass arent sending a hissy signal to it. You could probably build some kind of bandpass crossover to add highs to your speakers without adding too much high end also.
  5. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
    +1. Don't blame hiss on a tweeter, all it's doing is revealing the shortcomings of the amp. My Hartke 3500 hissed so bad I replaced all the chips and still had to install a noise gate. But my PA, a Yamaha 01V board and Carver amps, is dead quiet. Idling you can stand six inches in front of a speaker and not be able to tell that it's on.
  6. I said if you like hiss, you need a tweeter. Very few of the hissiest amps will sound hissy without a tweeter. All the hiss is wasted.

  7. Unchain

    Unchain I've seen footage.

    Jun 20, 2005
    Tucson, AZ
    Ok, lets not hijack the thread and argue about hiss here. What Pete said is all you need.
  8. KJung

    KJung Supporting Member

  9. burk48237

    burk48237 Supporting Member

    Nov 22, 2004
    Oak Park, MI
    No Hissy fits, guys!
  10. I guess it might depend on the high-end frequency response of the 10s in that cabinet. Speakers aren't all the same. Some do highs nicely, some don't. Same with mids and bass.
    Is this a cabinet that you can try? You could spend some time experimenting with the high-end, to see how it sounds.

    That tweeter amp on your GK needs a special tweeter/wiring arrangement to work as intended. Special GK cabs are wired for this. The tweeter is wired separately. The GK tweeter amp sends anything above 5k to that tweeter, and a full range signal to the other speakers. You can only use this feature with the Speakon too. It would so much easier if they had separate outputs for the main and tweeter amps. This way you could buy a tweeter horn, place it anywhere, and run it. That would be cool..
    So if you (let's say) bought another brand 4x10 cab with tweeter, you wouldn't be able to use this feature unless you rewired it to work with your GK amp...

  11. nysbob


    Sep 14, 2003
    Cincinnati OH
    I've never owned a cab with a tweeter, if I should ever get one, I'd probably pot it down or disconnect it.

    What self respecting guitarist would play through a compression driver? Why should we be any less demanding of good tone? :D
  12. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
    Different circumstance entirely. Guitar players use high levels of harmonic distortion, which tends to blow up tweeters. You wouldn't want your bass to have the same tone as a guitar player's.
  13. Those who ignore hiss-tory are doomed to repeat it.

    Disregard at your own risk.

  14. el_Kabong


    Jul 11, 2005
    Don't some of those tweeterless GK cabs have what GK describes as a 'high presence' driver, or something like that? Those drivers were in my 400RB 210 combo and cut through well. Still if it were me and I wasn't in a hurry I'd wait for one with a tweeter, it's more flexible.
  15. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Supporting Member

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    Good G*d, man... have you no shame??

  16. Passinwind

    Passinwind I Know Nothing Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 3, 2003
    Columbia River Gorge, WA.
    Owner/Designer &Toaster Tech Passinwind Electronics
    Ermmm...every one who plays big enough gigs to be miked up? [​IMG]

    Exactly! :cool:
  17. Big difference between creating your tone through a tweeter and micing that signal, then putting it through a tweeter to accurately reproduce it. There's nothing inherently wrong with a tweeter that makes it sound bad. Your stereo has a tweeter, does that make recorded guitars sound bad?

    For my money, the piezo tweeters sound crappier than domes. If you want a tweeter, try for a cab with drivers or domes, not piezos.


    Brad: No.
  18. spectorbass83


    Jun 6, 2005
    This is good to know. Thanks. It really would be nice if they had separate outputs for the main and tweeter amps. I will be going to try the cab/head tomorrow, unless its sold! :(
  19. tadawson


    Aug 24, 2005
    Lewisville, TX

    Nothing really magic about the GK biamp wiring. On the speakon, the 1+ and 1- connectors carry the bass, and the 2+ and 2- the tweeter. To add a tweeter to a non-tweeter cab, GK or otherwise, you WILL need to run speakon, but in either case, just run the tweeter off the 2+ and 2- pins, and the old wiring off 1+ and 1- and you are done! No crossover in the cab on a biamp setup - the amp does the filtering.

    And for those who want to use separate cabs with an external tweeter, once again, no problem. Get two 1/4" cables and one speakon connector. Wire one cable to (you probably guessed it!) 1+ and 1- and use that for low, and the other to 2+ and 2- for high. Just don't get them reversed, or your tweeter is screwed . . . . . .

    And for what it is worth, this is not a "special" cable to GK - this is the industry standard pinout for biamp on speakons . . . .

    - Tim
  20. spectorbass83


    Jun 6, 2005
    You guys are awesome thanks for making my decision a lot easier. I love that I can always depend on talkbass.com for assistance.