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Underpowering my cabs.

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Jazzin', Jan 27, 2006.

  1. Jazzin'

    Jazzin' ...Bluesin' and Funkin'

    I currently have a 307W head powering cabs that can handle 1000W RMS and 600W RMS, they are in parallel. I'm pretty sure it's almost impossible to blow my speakers. I'm wondering whether my cabs would sound better if I weren't underpowering them so underpowerishly. I'm eventually going to buy a 1200W Kustom GrooveBass (which will only put out 800W at 4ohms, which means only 400W per cab) which will still underpower my cabs, but not as badly.

    Is it such a big deal that mycabs are being so underpowered? Would they sound better if their RMS rating was half of what they are now?
  2. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
    If your rig isn't loud enough when you have your volume turned up past 12:00 a bigger amp wouldn't hurt. Otherwise it probably won't make much difference.
  3. lo-end


    Jun 15, 2001
    Im not familiar with your exact cabinets, but I know there are speakers out there that only sound their best with lots of power running through them. There are some Infinity car stereo speakers for example that sound pretty lackluster unless you are using them with a powerful amplifier, then they sound awesome.
  4. Im sure you could still fry some voice coils if you clip your Ashdown Mag head into both cabs. Avatar rates their cabs by the speaker's thermal limits instead of the speakers excursion capabilities in the cabinet, so the power handling on those cabs may be less than advertised, not that it makes much of a difference anyway. The only reason to switch to a new head is if you want more headroom or a different tone, not because you think you might be underpowering your cabs. If the Kustom is a lot louder and you think the tone is better then get one.
  5. Herman


    Dec 25, 2005
    Lynchburg, VA
    No. Your cabs don't need a certain amount of power to sound good. If you can't make them loud enough with your current amp, then you need more power.
  6. spectorbass83


    Jun 6, 2005
    I would think it also depends on the cab...The Schroeders for example are said to be very efficient and do not require a ton of watts to sound good and be heard..I am pushing 475 into my 4 ohm Schro 1212..Its loud. But then again, more headroom is a beautiful thing! :bassist:
  7. Jazzin'

    Jazzin' ...Bluesin' and Funkin'

    I do need more headroom for sure. I have to turn my amp up all the way just to compete with two guitars. Then I have to start worrying about my amp clipping and getting too hot. That's one of my biggest concerns.
  8. 8mmOD


    Mar 20, 2005
    I endorse & use Tech 21 pedals, Eminence loaded cabs, EMG pickups, Jim Dunlop picks & Ernie Ball Strings, BC Rich Basses.
    i think you answered your own question in your last post. if you cant hear yourself, you dont have enough power.
  9. seanm

    seanm I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize! Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2004
    Ottawa, Canada
    I agree. Underpowering your cabs is never a problem. Being underamped is a *big* problem.