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Speaker Distortion??

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by huskies90, Apr 10, 2006.

  1. huskies90


    May 17, 2004
    I have a weird question. During a gig about 2 weeks ago, I was starting to get some strange distortion sound out of my rig. I cannot pinpoint where this sound is coming from. I have played the rig during a few gigs since then and something just does not seem right. I have Eden cabs which are usually so clean and hi fi sounding and I think it is coming from the speakers. I have a 115xlt and 210xlt and both are doing it. That is the really strange part. Why both??

    I have tested this with three bases and two amps. I am getting the distortion in every scenario. Here are my amps and basses I tried:

    SWR 350X
    SWR Interstellar with an RMX 1450 (bridged)

    Modulus Quantum
    Fender MIJ with SD 1/4 pounders
    Fender MIA Hot rodded P

    Any ideas what is causing this sound? It doesn't sound like a blown speaker but then again, I have never heard a blown speaker. And since it is doing it with all my set ups, I have to think it is the cabs...The distortion is more of annoying distortion not like the overdrive that I get with the IOD...

  2. simpy1


    Mar 31, 2005
    New Zealand
    Perhaps your amp is being pushed to clipping? Does it only happen at high volumes?

    Power amp clipping is an awful buzzing/fuzz sound. It sounds like something's gonna break.

    Otherwise check grilles for any loose screws.
  3. Maybe a bad cable? Try using a few cables. If not, probabally a blown speaker.
  4. huskies90


    May 17, 2004
    Thanks for the quick response guys. It is not clipping as this originally occured with 1450 which provides plenty of headroom. My speakers are 8 ohm running each at 400 watts. The amp does not get turned up all that high. But yes, it is more noticeable at higher volumes.

    I did try different cables and the grills are tight. It is a bad sound but it is pretty subtle. I played two gigs since the night I noticed it. When I play the speakers by themselves I still get the sound. So unless I did something to both cabs, it may be something else. If only I had another cab lying around...
  5. Do both cabs have tweeters? Try messing with the tweeter attenuators, could be a voltage spike fried em. Other than that, sounds like blown speakers. Try bringing your amps in to a store and using em with other cabs.
  6. huskies90


    May 17, 2004
    Yes both have tweeters and when I turn them down it doesn't make a difference. It almost sounds like something is loose in the cab.

    What does a blown speaker sound like? Is it possible to have blown speakers and still get normal volume and only this subtle tonal difference?
  7. I had the misfortune of plugging into a blown backline cab (I had my own cab in the van, but decided it wasn't worth the effort to unpack with a backline- this was some sort of Ampeg 410) and it farted out really easily. I don't use an Ampeg 410 on a regular basis, but there was not too much volume coming from it. This is pretty much my only experience with blown speakers. There is also something called speaker creasing though, but I have never experienced it. If the difference is only subtle, then I suspect that the wiring is to blame.
  8. bassjigga


    Aug 6, 2003
    I've heard several times of people running high wattage amps through cabs but I've never understood why. To me it sounds like the cabs are being overdriven. 1400 watts into 800 handling capacity = 600 speaker blowing watts. If you can turn down the volume to a point where it goes away, I suspect this is the problem. Does it do it with the 350?
  9. huskies90


    May 17, 2004
    Yes it sounds the same with the 350X and since they are both SWR's with the same pre amp tubes, the two set ups sound pretty much the same. And before plugging in, I did extensive research about using the 1450 with my 800 watt cabs where I learned the 1450 watts was better for my cabs than 350 watts...
  10. tadawson


    Aug 24, 2005
    Lewisville, TX
    The issue is that 1200 clean watts into an 800 watt cabinet is far less damaging than say 600 grossly overdriven and clipped watts into an 800 ohm cabinet. I guess the bottom line is that you can damage pretty much any combination if you don't pay attention to what you are doing . . . .

    - Tim
  11. throw_this_away


    Mar 30, 2006
    I have never liked the idea of running a high wattage amp through a low wattage cab...

    Solid state may be different... but look at the tube world. 300W SVT's are traditionally paired with a 800W 8x10 cab. The 200W YBA200 is paired with a 400W cab. The cabs in each case (designed for the respective heads) have about double the power handling of the amp. I think a lot of combo amps try and do the same level of speaker Wattage to amp wattage matching.

    This way... as long as you refrain from jacking both your master and Gain knobs to full for extended periods, your entire system should be safe.
    you would really need to mind your P's and Q's running a 1400W amp into a 800W cab.
  12. LoveThatBass


    Jun 28, 2004
    Check the speaker holddown screws for correct tightness.

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