Power amp loudness?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Naggon, May 29, 2007.

  1. Naggon


    Nov 8, 2006
    Vancouver, BC
    So today I finally got my Carvin DCM1500 in the mail, and I was excited to try it out, thinking that 1500 watts bridged should just blow away the 200 watt thing I was using before. With this in mind, I was dismayed to find that, for some reason, my Carvin is QUIETER than my other 200 watt thing! (a GK rb400 head) I'm sure I must be doing something wrong...Whenever I turn the power up on my Carvin power amp or Trace Elliot GP11 preamp, the Carvin starts clipping like crazy.

    Could it be my speakers? I'm using a GK 4x10 and 1x15. It doesn't seem like they could be the problem, though, because before them I had a yorkville 2x10 combo that was just as loud as my whole GK rig.

    Could it be some sort of clash between the ohm ratings or various things? I don't really know how that stuff works...just thinking about it.

    Any advice you guys have would be much appreciated. I've got some big shows coming up and I need to get this sorted out! Thanks!
  2. TyronPotamkin


    Dec 12, 2006
    If you are running bridged, did you push in the bridge switch in the back? If you are running both channels with a mono input, did you push in the parallel switch. Are you using the 1/4" jacks from the pre-amp the power amp or are you using XLR? Have you read the manual? Not trying to be mean, just covering bases. you might call Carvin and ask a tech.
  3. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Supporting Member

    First, don't connect more than one speaker cab to that head until you know how many ohms it is designed to handle, how many ohms each speaker cab is, AND what the effective impedence is when both cabs are connected.

    Second, if you're clipping then your signal is either overloading or you have a problem. Did you read the manual and follow directions? With some heads, you can overload the input section. With others, if you jack the bass up all the way you induce clipping.

    That said, something doesn't sound right.
  4. how do you have it hooked up???
  5. Mcrelly


    Jun 16, 2003
    Minnesota, USA
    if you are actually running it in stereo mode (check switch settings WITH POWER OFF!!!) then you would only be getting 300w max from each output at 8ohms. to use the amp bridged you'll need to buy or make a cable with banana plugs on one end and 1/4" or speakons at the other end depending on your cab connections. and you must have the "bridge" switch engaged. KEEP YOUR LIMITER SWITCHES TURNED ON!!!

    look at the manual or click this PDF link and look at "bridged mono" picture on page 3 or 4 http://www.carvin.com/manuals/DCM1500.pdf

    or if your amp rear panel looks different, see...

  6. TyronPotamkin


    Dec 12, 2006
    On this amp you can use either binding post or speakon in bridged mode. And your right, if he is running stereo then he isnt getting the power he thinks it's producing. But even at that the 15 that he's using is probably gonna pop before to long if he starts running the amp bridged. GK highest power handling 15 is rated at 400watts and the 410 at 800 which is still 300watts short of what that amp is capable of producing.
  7. acually no he will just enter the program rated area thats all and he will have some head room
  8. Naggon


    Nov 8, 2006
    Vancouver, BC
    Ok, yes, I did try both the bridge and parallel switches on the back (btw, I wasn't intending to use bridge generally, I just tried it to see if it helped fix he problem)
    I have tried using both 1/4 inch and XLR cables.
    Both my cabinets are 8 ohms, and the power amp says on the back: 300 watts/channel at 8 ohms. Also, I don't think the bass is overloading; I don't even EQ in very much bass.
    as for the banana plug thing....I wasn't sure if that applied, but I shouldn't have to bridge anyhow...
    Thanks for the diagrams Mcrelly, I'm trying some stuff from that.
  9. TyronPotamkin


    Dec 12, 2006
    I would like for you to explain this in all seriousness. Just in my experience alone it is better to have a cab(s) that are rated for more power than the amp is capable of producing and in that you have cabinet headroom. If the tables are turned you essentally lose all headroom and you produce a ticking timebomb out of the cabinet. But I could very well be wrong, if I am please correct.
  10. TyronPotamkin


    Dec 12, 2006
    Just curious, did you get this new or used?
  11. ok there are 4 ratings of a cabinet minimum rms and peak/programe power
    and max

    the minimum is the leat amount of power recomended to drive a cabinet

    rms aka root mean square is the averager power you should use... this is usually twice the minimum and half the program

    program power this as stated above is twice the rms and what you should use if you want that lovely head room that you are after

    and finally the max power is the most power that you should put into a cabinet for if you go over that magical number cab is well frizzle fried
  12. TyronPotamkin


    Dec 12, 2006
    I thank you, I usually stick with the RMS rating above all else that way I know the cabinet wont get over powered. But i have also popped a 400watt rms speaker with 160watts peak. Again I thank you
  13. Naggon


    Nov 8, 2006
    Vancouver, BC
    TyronPotamkin: I did get it used, so of course theres the chance its broken or messed up. But of course, I might as well try everything and get some input before I spend money on repairs, eh?

    Thanks for all the help guys. I think I'll call Carvin....all ideas are still welcome and appreciated though.
  14. bassbrock


    Feb 20, 2007
    Callahan, FL
    What are you using as a preamp?
  15. greenboy


    Dec 18, 2000
    remote mountain cabin Montana
    greenboy designs: fEARful, bassic, dually, crazy88 etc
    Either you're doing something wrong in the setup (hookup, buttons, preamp pre and post gain and its hookup) - or the amp has a fault. In a couple different bands I've been in a DCM1500 has driven mains or monitors dual mono, subwoofer bridged, and even for a fairly big bass rig when jamming at the rehearsal place. Always got the kind of meat you'd expect from any good power amp of its wattage.

    Didn't happen to have one cab out of phase with the other? I've seen PA newbies do this when using banana plugs and plugging one in with the ground into the wrong binding post hole. Also check your speaker cables which should NOT be instrument cables BTW...
  16. megadethjohn


    Apr 25, 2007
    Uhhh...what? It's usually better to have an amp with a higher power output than your speakers can handle, at least when dealing with solid state amps. You'll be more likely to blow your speakers with a low wattage amp that you have to push hard to the point of clipping than with a high wattage amp that you can comfortably run below the point of clipping.

    It's harder to blow your speakers with loads of clean power than with a an amp that's clipping.

    The more powerful your amp the more headroom you have.
  17. Warr Tapper

    Warr Tapper Inactive

    Sep 17, 2006
    Not true at all. It's the opposite. It's time for Bill Fitzmaurice to comment.
  18. i think not but thats just me

    i think its a bit ironic that you like to listen to the guy who thinks he is special enough for his cabs to defy the laws of physics by have quote unquote great sounding mids when the horn needs to be as straight as possible sorry if this offended any one but just saying

    now back on topic
  19. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
  20. TyronPotamkin


    Dec 12, 2006
    I wasnt refering to extreme's ie. 100watt SS head with an 800watt cabinet. I was refering more to say a 500watt SS head and an 800watt cabinet.

Share This Page