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PreAmp to Power Amp - speaker or instrument cable?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by rydin4lifebass, Mar 20, 2018.

  1. Before I ruin something, let me just double check two things:

    If I have an multi-effects box before an amp, I want instrument cable between effects box and amp, correct?

    If I use a pre-amp like a SansAmp into a power amp, do I want to use speaker cable or instrument cable between the two?
  2. mmbongo

    mmbongo Dilly Dilly! Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    Shielded instrument cable.

    Speaker cables are only for speakers.
  3. Power Amps are best fed using a balanced XLR cable.
    Manticore, ctmullins, whero and 5 others like this.
  4. So basically, only when going into a cab should I be using speaker cables, everything else is good with instrument cables?
    SteveBass5 and ExaltBass like this.
  5. mmbongo

    mmbongo Dilly Dilly! Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    Yes. Speaker cables for speakers. Instrument cable for instruments, preamps, pedals, etc. Not only is is good, it's required for noise rejection :)
  6. Sounds good. thanks @mmbongo !

    I need to buy a SansAmp to feed the power amp that I have. I'm undecided if I'll be getting the pedal version or the rack mount version. In either case, I'll need to go 1/4" to speakon cable for the 1/4" out on the SansAmp into the speakon in on the Power Amp. The power amp doesn't have an XLR input. Any recommendations for a good 1/4" to speakon cable?
  7. Bassbeater

    Bassbeater Guest

    Sep 9, 2001
    XLR or Speakon? Usually it's 1/4', xlr, or a multi input jack (1/4, trs,xlr,spkn). Balanced trs or xlr I believe is preferred. Check the manuals to see which options your amp has if you aren't sure.
    GrapeBass and rydin4lifebass like this.
  8. Here are the amps in question from another thread. The bottom amp, which is the power amp and the one in question, doesn't have an xlr input, only speakon.

  9. Your SansAmp will have an xlr out. I bet your amps input speakon jack is a multi jack that also takes xlr which is what you should use. Read your manual to check, and use an xlr cable if you can.
    Munjibunga and Bassbeater like this.
  10. Looks like the Input for channel A and B on the right side takes XLR and 1/4” TRS. Use an XLR cable. Solved.
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2018
  11. mmbongo

    mmbongo Dilly Dilly! Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009

    Do not connect a signal cable to a Speakon output!!!

    Speakon cannot be an input!!!!!
    Giffro, Jewce, pudgychef and 12 others like this.
  12. Good to know..looks like it is a combo jack (see below from manual). What I'm now concerned about is the 2 ohm per channel thing...my cab is a Peavey Pro 810 (4 ohms)..does that mean i have to use bridged mode?

    This amp is designed to drive a 2-Ohm load per channel, thus achieving awesome performance levels into
    4 Ohms in BRIDGE mode. PV amplifiers are ruggedly constructed, rack-mountable pieces of gear with
    superb patching capability, allowing superior flexibility in application. Front panel features include calibrated,
    detented gain (dB) controls and LED indicators for power (PWR), signal presence (SIG), and DDT™
    (Distortion Detection Technique) activation on each channel, as well as a rocker mains POWER switch. The
    back panel contains an IEC connector for the mains power cord, a mains circuit breaker with reset, and the
    critical cooling fan opening. This opening should have an adequate supply of cool air and should never be
    blocked or restricted. Also on the back panel are the input and output sections, including an input barrier strip
    for permanent installations. Each channel input section includes a combo XLR / 1/4" phone jack connector,
    THRU/LOW out and HIGH out 1/4" jacks, and activation switches for the LOW CUT filter and crossover
    (150 Hz XOVER). Channel output sections feature dual shock-proof binding posts and four-conductor
    Speakon® connectors. An additional four-conductor Speakon connector allows BRIDGE mode output.
  13. Got it..so speakon only for the amp output to the cab?
  14. exactly. Xlr should go between your preamp and amp input.
    Al Kraft likes this.
  15. mmbongo

    mmbongo Dilly Dilly! Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    YES!! I think you are calling the XLR inputs Speakons though. The Speakons are those three round ports above the black and red plugs on that amp.
  16. Bassbeater

    Bassbeater Guest

    Sep 9, 2001
    The inputs on the bottom right are multi-jacks. The speakons on the left are for power cables. You're golden with xlr.
    pudgychef and rydin4lifebass like this.
  17. Thanks again guys. So I'll just go XLR cable from the SansAmp into the Channel A Input. I'll then use a speaker cable with speakon connectors from the Channel A output into the cab. That sound right?
  18. mmbongo

    mmbongo Dilly Dilly! Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    Sounds like a plan!
    Al Kraft and rydin4lifebass like this.
  19. Thanks @mmbongo @Bassbeater and @SLO Surfer

    Now that I'm good with cables, how about the Power amp? That's delivering a 2 ohm load per channel, but the 810 I have is a 4 ohm cab. Do I need to use bridge mode on the power amp?
  20. Bassbeater

    Bassbeater Guest

    Sep 9, 2001
    Yes, unless that center speakon out is a bridge. then it's about ohms and cab matching too. Read the manual so you don't damage anything, some amps have funky bridge operation, I'm not familiar with that one...

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