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Playing a passive bass thru an active input?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by jbailes, Aug 25, 2012.

  1. jbailes


    Apr 5, 2012
    Just wanted to make sure this would not hurt my amp head. The passive input jack on my LH500 conked out on me today, although the active jack still works fine.

    Did a search on this but all I found was the other way around i.e. can you play an active bass thru a passive input jack.
  2. Dave W

    Dave W

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    Nope, it won't hurt it at all. The active input is just a padded input, roughly -15db on most amps.
  3. hdracer


    Feb 15, 2009
    Elk River, MN.
    It will be fine.
    All your tone will get sucked out though.
  4. pacojas

    pacojas "FYYA BUN"

    Oct 11, 2009
    have no fear! the active input is less gain than the passive one, so you'll be a tad lower. :)
  5. lweastdad

    lweastdad Supporting Member

    Feb 5, 2011
    Yep - did this my mistake one time and wondered where my tone went...
  6. wvbass

    wvbass Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2004
    West Virginia
    Don't! It is like mixing matter and antimatter. You will simultaneously destroy every molecule in the universe!

    (Sorry...watching Star Trek right now)
  7. chadds


    Mar 18, 2000
    Don't cross the streams!!!!!
  8. Ric5

    Ric5 Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 29, 2008
    I build and modify basses
    The only difference between the active and passive is the active cuts the gain 8db to 15 db.
  9. I thought that was the rule for using urinals...
  10. Multipurpose rules are the best rules.
  11. Mehve


    Jun 2, 2012
    Kitchener, ON
    I think it's a vampire rule now.
  12. Freight Train

    Freight Train Earth-based Alternative Scientist, Sex Researcher Supporting Member

    Feb 25, 2012
    Dallas, Texas
    Tone suck, and it'll be noisier as you're going to boost preamp or master gain, or both, to make up for the amount the active input is attenuating. As Ric5 pointed out, between 8 and 15dB of gain that wouldn't be necessary if you just plugged into the passive input.

    Is that the same as sword fights? I know it's not the same as docking.
  13. jbailes


    Apr 5, 2012
    Fortunately, while these Hartkes sure do sound good, they're also cheap enough to get another head in the near future as a backup. Or maybe sell this one for another.
    It's not that the passive input jack does not operate at all. But you can't insert the cable jack all the way in. You have to toy with plugging it in constantly in order to find a "connection point" where you'll get some sound. The active input jack is good to go.

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