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Question about grounding

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by FUNKonthewall, Oct 25, 2004.


  1. FUNKonthewall

    FUNKonthewall Nailing The Groove

    Sep 29, 2004
    Atlanta, GA
    Endorsing: Fodera Guitars, Aguilar Amps, Dunlop/MXR Accessories
    This is something I've been wondering for a while. If you plug an amp without a ground plug (or any other piece of equipment without a ground plug, for that matter) into a device like a power conditioner or simply a power strip with a ground plug, does it safely ground the amp? Also, would this have the same grounding effect as if the amp had a ground plug, and was plugged straight into the wall? If not, what is the procedure for getting a grounded amp power cable? Sorry for being so long-winded. :meh:
     
  2. Bob Lee (QSC)

    Bob Lee (QSC) In case you missed it, I work for QSC Audio! Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 3, 2001
    Costa Mesa, Calif.
    Technical Communications Developer, QSC Audio
    The safety ground on the AC cord and plug provides a safe path for current if the AC wiring inside the unit ever shorts out to the chassis. That is rare, but it does happen sometimes; sometimes an amp or whatever may get dropped, breaking or weakening the mechanical supports for the transformer, circuit boards, etc. If this does happen, the short to ground will quickly cause the fuse or circuit breaker in the unit, power strip, wall box, or wherever, to open and break the circuit. This is as it should be.

    Without that safety ground, if such a fault occurs, the current will seek an alternate path to ground, which could be through, say, an instrument cable and a person grasping a mic. That is dangerous and could cause injury or death by electrocution.

    Some products either don't have AC wiring inside (they might have a wall wart power supply) or are doubly insulated to protect against potential electrical shorts to the chassis. These products don't need the safety ground.

    Anyway, if it's not grounded, it's not grounded, even if you plug it into a power conditioner.
     
  3. FUNKonthewall

    FUNKonthewall Nailing The Groove

    Sep 29, 2004
    Atlanta, GA
    Endorsing: Fodera Guitars, Aguilar Amps, Dunlop/MXR Accessories
    Thanks a bunch. That's what I was looking for.