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Is it safe???

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by AGF, Mar 10, 2005.

  1. AGF

    AGF Guest

    Mar 10, 2005
    I currently play a Marshall JCM800 with a Marshall 4X12 w/ v-30s.

    The other day just out of interest i borrowed my friends pedal that allows for two amps to be ran at the same time... I hooked up my marshall amp and my old bass amp (200 watts solid state) with another 4X12 cab and a 1X18 cab. The sound i got from that was surprising... I put a boss overdrive pedal in the signal path so it effected both amps... the marshall was the overdrivven distortion sound im used to, but then the bass amp running at the same time, created a gritty low end sound. I really liked the sound it made, good and dirty for the style of band i play in. What i NEED to know before i do this again, is if its safe. Am i going to damage anything by using a bass amp with an electric guitar? Or is it safe to use a bass amp with an electric guitar?

    Thanks to anyone who can answer this question for me.
  2. James Hart

    James Hart

    Feb 1, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: see profile
    I currently play guitar through my bass rig and I filled in as a backup guitarist in a gigging classic rock band for a summer playing my guitars through my old bass rig. I never had any problems
  3. AGF

    AGF Guest

    Mar 10, 2005
    anyone else???
  4. SirPoonga


    Jan 18, 2005
    I'd think, from a logical point of view after many weeks of looking at building my own bass amp and seeing schematics out there, that there is very little difference between a guitar amp and a bass amp. What is different is the preamp and what frequency range you can EQ.

    So it shouldn't hurt anything to play either bass or guitar on a bass or guitar amp.

    Also your speakers might be influencing the sound too. If you played guitar on a cabinet that was designed for bass you might not get a high response. This depends on the cabinet and speaker.
  5. Yup, I do it too. Mexican Strat into BOSS ME-50B (made for bass) into SWR Workingmans 12 combo (bass amp with the tweeter off).

    I use the distortions/overdrives and the reverbs off of the multi FX and play the amp so that the Limiter only occasionally lights up. Been 1-2 years with that amp with no problems.
  6. AGF

    AGF Guest

    Mar 10, 2005
    So you guys are still using in that way without any problems. Hopefully it is safe...
  7. nonsqtr

    nonsqtr The emperor has no clothes!

    Aug 29, 2003
    Burbank CA USA
    It's probably safe. :)
  8. Kael


    Dec 26, 2004
    Oklahoma City
    Guitar through bass amp = OK

    Bass through guitar amp = a need to buy a new guitar amp before the guitarist you borrowed it from realizes you just jacked up his cabinet
  9. DubDubs


    Aug 23, 2004
    Los Angeles
    Guitar is fine through a bass amp. You only run into trouble the other way (bass through guitar amp).
  10. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Bettendorf, IA USA

    There is no real danger at all in playing bass through a guitar amp. It's the cabinets that will get trashed. The speakers in guitar cabs are not designed to handle the FR of a bass guitar, so they'll cook in a few hours of loud playing.

    But you can plug your bass into any guitar amp and use a real bass cabinet and play all day 'til to your heart's delight with no danger at all to the amp.

    But you have to realize that it is a guitar amp. A 100W guitar amp is the most obnoxiously loud thing on the planet and about the biggest you'll find, but the same 100W using a bass is pretty modest. Throw in the fact that most guitar speakers are much more efficient that bass speakers and you have serious performance damper with this scenerio.

    So, don't expect too much out of a guitar amp if you playing bass through it.

    As for guitar through a bass amp, that can be really nice. Some of the best clean guitar tones I have ever heard have come out of bass amps. I use my bass amp for an acoustic guitar amp all the time. It works very well and sounds great using the appropriate preamp.
  11. AGF

    AGF Guest

    Mar 10, 2005
    Bass through guitar amp runs into trouble why???
  12. WalterBush


    Feb 27, 2005
    Yuma, Az
    Full disclosure, I'm a certified Fender technician working in a music store that carries Fender, Yamaha, and Ibanez products among others.
    The '59 Fender Bassman was originally a bass amp, and got glommed onto by guitarists for it's rich, full sound and smooth overdrive. When the reissue came out recently, the GC salesguy looked at me funny when I wanted to plug my bass into it :rollno: . I use my Peavey Triple XXX and 4x12 to amplify my Double Bass, but it IS only at low volume--I think my speakers could handle it wide open, but I don't want to find out the hard way.

    Edit--Wasn't Jaco playing through a Marshall Plexi and 4x12 for a while?
  13. The amp will do fine, it's the speakers that will get hosed. The problem with guitar speakers on bass is...

    1. Xmax (linear cone travel) is too low.
    2. Cone paper is too thin.
    3. Spiders are too weak.
    4. Voice coils are too small to dissapate the extra heat.
  14. AGF

    AGF Guest

    Mar 10, 2005
    I got it thanx..
  15. I think that it should work fine, you'd think the cabinet would need a tweeter to capture the high end of a guitar. I know in Bass Guitar Magazine it said some punk band's bass guitarist got his unique sound playing through a guitar amp.
  16. AGF

    AGF Guest

    Mar 10, 2005
    No dude, if we are doing that way, sound is very thick....
  17. Tim__x


    Aug 13, 2002
    Alberta, Canada
    Most electric guitar cabinets don't go much higher than 5k, good high frequency response can make distortion sound harsh. In general, good bass cabinets go lower, higher and flatter than guitar cabinets.