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walkabout master level

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by meta, Apr 30, 2009.

  1. meta


    Mar 11, 2009
    Hi there,

    quick question, I've scoured the walkabout megathread but can't seem to find the info I'm looking for on this one... so hopefully someone will happen to know:

    i've got a 4 ohm walkabout 12, how high can I turn up the master without worrying about blowing out the speaker? the cab is probably rated at 300w, and the head is 300w.

    I play bopth an active and passive bass through it, and the active bass is way louder at the same volume (as you would expect), does that mean I can turn it up higher when I play the passive bass? right now i never turn it up past 12 / noon... but it might be able to take more with the passive input? (active jazz, and passive mustang)

    I don't want to blow the speaker by trying to find out.

  2. john m

    john m Supporting Member

    Jan 15, 2006
    Answering this question is like having the salesman set the knobs on you amp "in the store". Input gain and how much low end you run will have a dramatic affect on how hard the speaker gets pushed. Don't clip and don't make the speaker fart and you'll be ok.

    john m
  3. I'm not sure how helpul this will be, but...

    I imagine it'll start to crap out if you drive it too hard, just like any other small-ish box loaded with a single 12". I wouldn't push mine that hard.
  4. meta


    Mar 11, 2009
    lol, right! I almost never push it anywhere near noon, and usually play smallish places. but we went to a fairly large room, and while mid-gain, mid-volume it was ok volume-wise, I could have used a little bit more, just cause the room was so huge... I'm planning to get another cab for these sorts of purposes, maybe a 2x12 rated at 600w or something like that, or something to pair with the combo, but in the meantime...

    so when you first hear the amp clip / speaker fart, does that mean you have already damaged the cab? Almost impossible to really answer I guess.

    thanks again!
  5. RickenBoogie


    Jul 22, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    Using a seperate 2x12 is a great Idea. Lots more volume. As to the Scout combo, you'll definately hear when the speaker is at it's limit. Just back off when you hit that level.
  6. Chef

    Chef Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    May 23, 2004
    Columbia MO
    Staff Reviewer; Bass Gear Magazine
    Caution is your friend...there are just too many variables to accurately answer "how high can I turn it up."
    Where's the input set, where's the eq set, what is your bass guitar doing.

    Yes, you can turn up to make your passive bass match your active, if the rig was "happy" that way with the active.
  7. pfschim

    pfschim Just a Skeleton with a Jazz bass Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2006
    SF Bay Area
    not at all, you have most likely not damaged the cab in any way. That does not mean you should push the cab way past hard breakup ("farting out") all the time, but Mesa gear is very well made and can stand up to serious use (even occasional abuse) and generally be fine.

    As to your max master volume level question, you could run the master up to the point where it does fart out, then back off a bit from there. At its rated 4ohm (or 8 depending on your model), you should be able to run it at that slightly reduced level all night long if needed.

    As others have suggested, there are other factors: how you use the active/passive switch, the amount of pre gain, the degree that you push the tone controls and EQ levels (particularly the low freqs) will have a big impact on when that small (but mighty!) 1x12 starts to reach its physical limits limits.

    Also keep in mind that over the course of a long gig and continuous use, the speaker voice coil will heat up and cause the 12" driver to become less efficient at using the power the amp delivers (I think this is called thermal sag, or some such)

    Your idea of a second cab for louder gigs is just the thing. I did the very same by adding a Scout 15 to my Walkabout 12 when I need more push than the 12 can reasonably deliver. It works great. Many TBers have used the mighty Walkabout head to drive any number of cabs in many configurations, all with excellent results.

    Good luck and enjoy the Walkabout
  8. meta


    Mar 11, 2009
    thanks for the input!
  9. Chef

    Chef Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    May 23, 2004
    Columbia MO
    Staff Reviewer; Bass Gear Magazine
    fwiw: I never use the active inputs on either my Walkabout, or the Mesa M6.
    My hottest basses don't seem to bother the passive input, and using the active input seems to darken the highs as well as knocking the gain down.
  10. pfschim

    pfschim Just a Skeleton with a Jazz bass Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2006
    SF Bay Area
    totally with you on this one brother. I really want clean clean clean up front tone from my basses (don't mind a bit of sweet tube compression), but I never use the active switch unless I get too much signal break up from a very hot active pre. As none of my current basses has that problem, I do not use the active switch at all.

    Can be a handy option though, for basses with those 18v, super hot active pre's.

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