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when is it too loud?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Bayou_Brawler, Jul 3, 2004.

  1. Bayou_Brawler

    Bayou_Brawler The most hurtful thing ever realized

    Oct 23, 2003
    Ann Arbor, MI
    i'm playing through a 800RB head and a GK 1x15 RBH cab. i play a fender jazz (not a very "hot" bass). when are you too loud for the amp or cab? right now i'm playing about 1/2 way up on both volumes during practice. how much can i crank this thing up before i start doing damage?
  2. jim primate

    jim primate bass guitarist.

    when you start hearing distortion or clipping.
  3. lo-freq

    lo-freq aka UFO

    Jan 19, 2003
    DFW, Texas
    When your bass rig dances off the stage all by itself.

    Seriously: when the cabinet starts making non-musical sounds that aren't coming from your bass guitar. If it starts sounding unnaturally distorted, then you're pushing either the amp or cab too hard.
  4. Benjamin Strange

    Benjamin Strange Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    New Orleans, LA
    Owner / Tech: Strange Guitarworks
    Depends on the amp. Some tube amps sound best when it's "too loud". SS amps don't sound good when they distort (usually). Use your ears; if it gets ugly turn it down.

    And wear earplugs.
  5. Limo


    Sep 22, 2002
    Reykjavik Iceland
    We are in the times when you can push your amps as far as you want, if you have it at max and the cab isn't distorting then it's fine, however if you're at half and the cab is distorting you might consider if your cab is powerful enough. Check out the watts on the amp and the cab. The GK800 is 200w in 8 ohms and your cab is 400w in 8 ohms. So turn the amp as much as you want is what I says:bassist:
  6. xb100


    Mar 24, 2004
    NH, In
    Not trying to get off topic but when i turn my tnt up about half way i get some hiss? Is that bad or do i need to play my eq?
  7. lo-freq

    lo-freq aka UFO

    Jan 19, 2003
    DFW, Texas
    What you are suggesting is one of the best way to ruin speakers (unless the amp is either Tube or being Clip Limited).
    Maybe all the amps you've used are tube amps or have clip limiting, I don't know.

    If you crank-up a solid state amp beyond its rating and it does not have a clip limiter that's activated, the amp could go into clipping and could damage speaker(s).
  8. AB53211


    Apr 15, 2004
    Play with the EQ
  9. Limo


    Sep 22, 2002
    Reykjavik Iceland
    I'm sorry but I don't understand "beyond its rating" also if the cab can run 400w in 8 ohms it should handle 200w head in 8 ohms, isn't it? The preamp clip has nothing to do with the cabs. Speakers nowadays don't get ruined as easily as you might think. If it's not distorting, as I said in my earlier post, it's not being overloaded. if he turns the volume up to the max and the cab's not distorting then he's not doing any harm to the cab.
  10. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Damage to what, your ears or the amp? I'm gonna second Mr. Strange's suggestion of wearing earplugs.
  11. Petebass


    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    You're both a little bit right.

    When an amp clips, it's capable of send out out double it's rated wattage. So a Solid State 200w amp can produce 400watts if you're not careful, but it will be a horrible sounding 400w. Now if you're using speakers rated at 400w or more, they shouldn't burn out. If they're 200w speakers, you'll be asking "what's that burning smell?" before too long. The answer is "Your Voice coil!".

    At 100% THD (Total Harmonic Distortion) you can certainly hear the clipping induced distortion, but at 120+dB, clipping can be hard to hear. That's why a lot of amps have a clip light.

    IMO clipping is a bit like smoking - it may or may not be doing damage, but I still chose not to do it. I've played in some seriously loud bands and I've never blown a speaker!

  12. Yep...nail on the head. This may surprize some....but the highest incidence rate of 'burning' voice coils comes from underpowered amps reaching their threshold and dumping out a crap signal that just fries the coil. And the owner is left scratching his head saying, "...but I thought since I had a 300w head I could play at 10+ into my 400w cabinet...???"
  13. Woodchuck


    Apr 21, 2000
    Atlanta (Grant Park!)
    Gallien Krueger for the last 12 years!
    When you begin to sound like crap!
  14. hmmmm...it may seem strange, but speakers don't like to push square waves out of them (clipping) (how many square waves do you see on the ocean, hey?)

    It is a quick way to kill the speaker and over time, your bank balance.

    Like playing bass, keep it smooth!

    If you want more info PM me......