1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Underpowering Orange terror bass

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Motown_Phenom, Oct 12, 2018.

  1. Motown_Phenom


    Jul 15, 2018
    hey guys, I may have the opportunity to get my hands on an Orange terror bass 500. The only issue I have is that I've recently learned or underpowering an amp. I currently have a 2x12 800 watt 4ohm speaker. My question is do you think I would have any possibility of damaging either the speaker or the head from underpowering the setup? Any help would be appreciated, thanks guys!
  2. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    central NY state
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    Should be fine.
    Ethan117, kobass and tekhedd like this.
  3. blubass


    Aug 3, 2007
    Modesto Ca
    Current: Blackstar, DR strings, Nady. Previous endorsements with: GK, Rotosound, Ernie Ball, Cleartone, EMG, Dean, Dava Picks, Rebel Straps, Dickies
    There is no such thing as underpowering. Lots of guitar amps have variable power attenuators, and every amp has a volume knob, which also reduces power to a speaker.

    Now, overpowering a speaker... that's a thing
  4. Whoever made up underpowering deserves to be publicly flogged.
    Primakurtz, Chef, Luigir and 22 others like this.
  5. Wisebass


    Jan 12, 2017
    Lost in Space
    Hi Motown_Phenom :)



    Yep! Just play loud enough! :laugh::roflmao:

    mbelue likes this.
  6. It is 4 ohm so there is a pretty reasonable chance you could OVERpower it with low end eq. That 800w rating will likely be at 1kHz for some minutes. If you give it a maximum wallop of low E with the bass maxed you could launch the cones into the grill. Don't do that.
    mbelue, BadExample and tekhedd like this.
  7. mouthmw


    Jul 19, 2009
    You haven't learned all about "underpowering". You haven't learned the part where there's no such thing.
    Luigir, Bassgeer, mbelue and 8 others like this.
  8. lug


    Feb 11, 2005
    League City, Tx
    I recently underpowered my amp (by foolishly turning down the "volume" knob) and my cat died the very same day. I wouldn't risk it!

    (note: I don't really own/have never owned a cat)
    ppiluk, Wisebass, Real Soon and 15 others like this.
  9. knumbskull


    Jul 28, 2007
    ah, this old chestnut! takes me back.

    just make sure the ohm rating matches exactly and the amp's wattage is within the range that the cab can handle.
  10. knumbskull


    Jul 28, 2007
    I underpowered my amp, later that day i bought a hat – it didn't suit me.
    ppiluk, SactoBass and MattZilla like this.
  11. Also just so OP @Motown_Phenom knows, we are taking the piss out of the idea of underpowering, not them for posting their question.

    Hopefully you enjoy your Terror :D
    Wisebass, mbelue and Aqualung60 like this.
  12. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    What exactly do you think underpowering is?
    Coolhandjjl likes this.
  13. Warpeg

    Warpeg Supporting Member

    Jun 20, 2005
    Next steps:
    1.) Identify the person or entity that taught you about 'underpowering'
    2.) Correct them on their ignorance and avoid them
    3.) Learn about correct amplifier and cabinet matching from the fine folks here on Talkbass

    Aqualung60, Rapisme and MattZilla like this.
  14. higain617


    Sep 12, 2013
    You can't under-power a speaker cabinet. Slap whoever told you that.
  15. Couldn't resist.
  16. chaosMK


    May 26, 2005
    Albuquerque, NM
    Hi-fi into an old tube amp
    I underpowered my cab once, wasnt loud enough
  17. KickingBass

    KickingBass Look into it

    We’re not upset with you for asking OP, we’re upset with the person who probably ignorantly told you that and mislead you. Now where is he? We’d like to talk to him...
  18. MattZilla


    Jun 26, 2013
    @erigod23 def oughtta change Robin's line to something like "you might underpower your cab, and that might damage your amp". It's those folks who could use a good ol Robert Mitchum across the temple, not the ones to whom they've spread the fear.
  19. Greyvagabond


    Aug 17, 2007
    Los Angeles
    IIRC, isn't "underpowering" basically driving a crappy, low-watt amp into serious hard clipping, and the resulting square-wave signal to the speakers being "bad?" I don't remember that actual rational.
    Either way, pretty sure any amp these days has some sort of limiter/compressor to prevent anything bad from happening.
    dBChad likes this.
  20. Yeah, I thought that too after I made it.
    Oh well, it's all in good fun....
    MattZilla likes this.

Share This Page