Input Gain and Master Volume

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Duncorama, Jun 29, 2008.

  1. Duncorama


    Nov 7, 2007
    I've searched the forum for info on this and although i can see the topic has been covered, i still don't understand what the deal is with this.
    I have an Ampeg B2 1x15 Comb, i run it with an ampeg svt 4x10 cab to take it up to 350 watt output.
    On the combo my input gain has a red light that starts blinking when i have it up above 1/3 of the way. To make it as loud as possible iturn my master volume up to 10 with the limiter switch on in order to protect my speakers.
    My question is what is the deal with the imput gain? If i run that so the light blinks red will this kill my amp?
    Also, when i turn the limiter off it gets a lot louder but less defined in sound quality - is there a danger of hurting my speakers with the limiter off even though my exstension cab is 500 watts and the amp can only put out 350 watts top?
    Sorry for the long winded and probably repeatedly asked question but i could just do with an explanation of things in non technical terms.
  2. RickenBoogie


    Jul 22, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    If the light blinks occasionally, no prob. If it lights up and stays lit, you need to turn the gain down. How you eq the amp also plays a part in this. If you boost everything, you'll have less room to play with. Hope that helps.
  3. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG
    I'm not sure how that amp works, but Jerrold Tiers has said that the light on the Pro series heads isn't a clip light but an input light, so you can crank the gain much louder than you think you can as long as it isn't audibly distorting. In this case, trust your ears, not the lights. Lights can malfunction. They call them "idiot lights" in cars for a reason.
  4. bongomania

    bongomania Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    +1, ignore the light, use your ears. With the master volume down at a medium setting, turn up the input gain until you actually hear the preamp clipping while you play. Then turn the input gain down just a bit until the preamp no longer clips. Then you are free to adjust the master volume to as high as it can go without clipping the speaker.
  5. Duncorama


    Nov 7, 2007
    Cheers for the replies.
    What is it that i'm listening for when you say clipping?
    Also, i use heavy distortion a lot of the time so should i go off the clean sound then engage the distortion as usual?
  6. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG
    Again, not familiar with that amp, but if it has a tube, then clipping will manifest itself as distortion/overdrive. If it doesn't, it will manifest itself as a nasty digital click/clack sound that you will instantly know. And yes, turn the distortion off when setting your gain level.
  7. Duncorama


    Nov 7, 2007
    Yeah it's solid state.
    Cheers for that, i shall have a bash and let ye know.
  8. 68Goldfish

    68Goldfish Supporting Member

    Nov 4, 2006
    Port Orchard WA
    I think they call them idiot lights to warn the idiots that it's time to put oil in thier engine becuase what was in there has leaked out and now there's little to no oil pressure. :eek: I'm not sure it has anything to do with the inherant unreliability of the light itself. :D
    Now, back to the topic at hand....