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How to shop for cabs...

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by FunkSlap89, Sep 18, 2005.

  1. FunkSlap89


    Apr 26, 2005
    Albany, NY
    I need a 2x10 cab and I have no idea where to start... I know basically nothing about cabs (except the basics...) because i have always bought combos. Do you have to match the wattage on the cabinet with the wattage of your amp? or is the wattage of the cab just the handling amount? I need some help. i want to hook one up to my SWR combo. I think it would sound sweet! :bassist:
  2. First, the LA15 is a great stand alone practice cab, but not suitable to drive an external cabinet. In fact, I'm not so sure it's capable. Your best bet would be to get a whole new rig and keep the LA15 for practice.

    That being said, you should definately look on the Avatar site and check out some of their deals. You might be able to get a 2x10 and a nice head for around $550 shipped! These cabs get great reviews around here.
  3. RMS wattage ratings are what you should be looking at. The wattage rating of the cab is the recommended handling limit. You can always go lower and even higher in some cases depending on the cab. The wattage of the amp is how much the amp puts out at a certain rating (ohms) under normal opperation.

    Every different cab has different dimentions, speakers, and therfore different sensativity and frequency responce. Sensativity is shown in terms of dB. A cab with a 100dB rating will be significantly louder than a cab with a 95dB rating, all other factors being equal. The frequency responce will also give you a hint to how the cab will respond to low and high notes.

    Amps are designed to deilver their wattage at certain ratings, called ohms. The most common ohm ratings are 2, 4, and 8, with the most common probably being 4. When you are amp shopping, pay close attention to the ohm rating in relation to the ohm rating of your cab. If you are using one 2x10 cab, it's most likely going to be 8ohms. Let's have an example: Say you have a cab that is rated at 300w @ 8ohms. Now if you want to match a head to it, you would want something that opperated close to 300w @ 8ohms. Now if you have an amp that is rated 300w @ 4ohms, you can guarantee that you are NOT getting 300w @ 8ohms. In fact, you are probably getting closer to 200-220w @ 8ohms.

    Now, here's something that might mess with your head a bit. If you pair two 300w @ 8ohm cabs, the resulting cabs will be rated together as 600w @ 4 ohms. Now most amps that run 600w @ 4ohms (TONS of amps to chose from) will probably run 350-450w @ 8ohms, so it's smart to get a powerful head such as this if you plan on running 2 cabs in the future, which you should be planning on.

    NOW, if you plan on running one cab for a long time, you can get a 4ohm cab now and get more power, and later pair it with another 4ohm or 8ohm cab to achieve a combined ohmage of 2-2.6. Check your amp specs first to make sure it's ok running at this low a load. The thing is, many amps will run at very high wattage at this low of a rating, so be careful that you don't damage your cabs or your amp if it's not rated at 2ohms.

    anyways, that's my $.03. Feel free to correct/educate me!
  4. MJ5150

    MJ5150 Terrific Twister

    Apr 12, 2001
    Olympia, WA
    No, they do not have to match exactly. You do want an amp that is more powerful than the ratings of your cab though. When you have an amp that produces more power than the cab is rated at, you have something we call "headroom". That is a good thing in the world of bass cabs.

  5. FunkSlap89


    Apr 26, 2005
    Albany, NY
    Wow.. thanks a lot! I'll consider getting a whole new rig... it'll hurt the wallet though.. as usual.. :crying: :bawl: :scowl: