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How much power is right?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Contrapuntal, Dec 2, 2004.

  1. Contrapuntal


    Mar 1, 2004
    I have an Ampeg 2x10 and 1x15. They both "handle" 400 watts. Both are 8 ohms. How much power should I be using? 400 exactly? More than 400? How much more?

    I currently have an Ampeg B2R which puts out 200w@8ohms and 350w@4 ohms. The 200 watts was definately not enough with just the 1x15 which is why I added the 2x10. (Also to fill out the sound.) But I've some cash and I'm thinking of going pre-amp/poweramp and so thought I'd get the experts opinion here...

  2. Yossarian


    Jun 24, 2004
    first of all, if they are the classic series ones, they handle 200 watts RMS and 400 watts program. That means it wouldn't be wise to use more than 400 watts per cab. in other words, if you used a 800 watts at 4 ohm amp with those two cabs, that'd probably be the most you should safely use.

    most people prefer more power to less. if you run an 800 watt amp at full blast with those two cabs, you will hurt them and it will be bad. However, that's the point of having bunches of power, if you have 800 watts, full blast wont be necessary. headroom! yay! I'd probably go for around 600 watts, personally, just because pushing it to the limit scares me. just make sure you dont clip your amp when you have that much power!

    By the way, I always thought the B-2R was kinda quiet for 350 watts. There's all kinds of debates about that though, who knows.
  3. jacostilllives


    May 4, 2004
    800 max is right but the rule of thumb is if you are playing in a band take all the watts of your guitarists and multiply that by 2 so if you have 2 guitarists but using 100 watt stack amps you need 400 to hang. I personally play in a band with 3 guitarists a 3 horns and keyboards and i can hang with 350 watts.
  4. It does depend on which brand of amp as ratings vary so much, Ampeg seem underpowered for the claimed ratings, yet Hartke are the other way very loud for the ratings.

    You do not need to match the cabs rating to the amp only make sure the cabs can handle what you give it.

    If the Ampeg is rated at 350w then you need cabs rated at about 400w+

    The idea that underpowering cabs is nonsense as long as the impedance is matched and the cabs are not under rated then they will be fine. Although to drive the cabs for the best performance you do want an amp that can at least put out half to 3/4 of the cabs rms rating.

    Example Schroeder cabs are rated at 800w + but they still sound great with 200w going into them.

    You could use the B2R with one cab 200w but you would have to be careful not to crank it as the single cab would struggle.

    Hope this helps