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Would I be underpowering this cab with this head?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by phayes1007, Jan 12, 2013.

  1. phayes1007


    Apr 19, 2011
    Just bought the GK 700RB-ii at Sam Ash today... haven't fully-decided on the cab(s) yet, plus I still need to save up $ for that purchase. I've been trying out a bunch of different-sized 10''s and 15''s, half/full-stacks... haven't found any 12''-speaker cabs in stores until today. The Sam Ash by me just got in a ''used'' GK Neo 4x12 recently, and they're selling for only $550 (which is like half-price of what the new ones cost, and naturally caught my eye).

    I didn't have time to try it out today, but I noticed that the cab's power handling is 1200W (yes, quite the monster, indeed) @ 4 ohms. With the GK head, I have the option of running either one 4-ohm cabinet @ 480W/50W or two 8-ohm cabs (in which case a lay-person such as myself would assume the wattage coming from the head is split evenly to 240W/25W between both cabs, but I have a feeling I'm dead wrong about that).

    Anyways- so far, in almost all of the rigs/setups I've demoed at different stores, the cabs I tried were specified with a power-handling "roughly" similar to the wattage listed on each of the heads. That's obviously not surprising since most floor-rigs you see at the stores are set up for the head to be used with only the 1 or 2 cabs sitting right next to or under it.

    From what I understand, the powerhandling (wattage) advertised on a bass cab is pretty misleading and often not very meaningful by itself, but I'd like to know if there's any reason that running a 480W/50W head thru a 1200W cabinet would be a bad idea?

    I realize that this question has arisen in previous threads, but I couldn't get a clear answer from ones I read (or from the guys working at SamAsh today). Any replies are very much appreciated, thanks!
  2. It's not a problem at all, you have nothing to worry about.
  3. dincz


    Sep 25, 2010
    Czech Republic
    If you're worried about underpowering you should look for the cab with the lowest power rating you can find :)
  4. LiquidMidnight


    Dec 25, 2000
    There's no such thing as underpowering a cabinet.
  5. under-powering as a problem related to gear failure is a MYTH. You're fine. Most likely that 1200 watt cab will begin to fart at about half that anyways so no problem at all.
  6. I wouldn't do it...might freeze up the voice coils.

  7. B-string

    B-string Supporting Member

    I run my G-K NEO412 with the Fusion 550 and before that with a 800RB (300 watt) or an Ampeg V4-B (120 watts measured).
    The only trouble you will have is finding somewhere you can actually turn the amp up some. That is one awesome sounding LOUD cab!
  8. wcriley


    Apr 5, 2010
    Western PA
    I once forgot to shut my amp down after practicing.
    The cab was severely underpowered (maybe a few miliwatts of white noise?) for about 20 hours before I noticed it.
    Speakers suffered no damage.
  9. phayes1007


    Apr 19, 2011
    Thanks, guys. Seems like commen sense to me that there's no reason to worry about under powering a cab.. But assuming things gets me into trouble sometimes, so I like to ask if I'm not sure.

    Btw- what do guys think about that cab option... Used GK 4x12 Neo for $550? Sounds like a really good once-in-a blue-moon kinda deal. I'll obviously try it out and decide for myself, but I'm curious if anyone here has used this cab or has an opinion on it. Also I'm not experienced or knowledgable when it comes to buying "used" amp equipment, so I don't really know how to check for any quality issues that it might have.
  10. Jim C

    Jim C I believe in the trilogy; Fender, Stingray, + G&L Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2008
    Bethesda, MD
    Sounds like a good deal assuming it is not damaged which would mean some real volume in store to know.
  11. B-string

    B-string Supporting Member

    The price sounds about right, so few come up for sale though used. Most that have them have trouble letting them go. Check for loose screws on the drivers and grill, other than that it is a solid built cab and VERY hard to damage.
    My Drummer's son backed their boat into my cab, knocked the cab over. I had to straighten the wheels and that was it.
  12. phayes1007


    Apr 19, 2011
    Hah.. that's an awesome story. Gotta feel pretty good about a piece of equipment that can take a ramming from a boat.

    Thanks, I'll be sure to check that out next time I'm at Sam Ash. Part of me hopes that I don't fall in-love with it instantly- because I'm pretty sure it's not going to fit in a Toyota Avalon. At least my dad drives a pick-up truck, though he doesn't like to share it with others in his family lol
  13. SunnBass

    SunnBass All these blankets saved my life.

    Aug 31, 2010
    Columbia, Mo
    GK 700RB-II into GK Neo 412 is my current exact rig.
    Um, this combination is...well, you should never have to turn the volume up past 11:00. It's loud, like...could kill a small child loud.

    (ok, pay attention: the one that says "volume" is the input level, the one that says "woofer" is the master volume. Try to keep the input volume under 12:00.)

    And yes, no such thing as under-powering a cabinet.
  14. B-string

    B-string Supporting Member

    Another story? When I got the Fusion 550 the guitarist wanted a volume war with my 412. He had a 100 watt Marshall half stack. We practice at the drummer's garage, I had to buy four picture frame glasses, the A/C vent "fuses" popped (only supposed to melt under high temp to shut off the vents during a fire). Drummer's wife not amused and I had quite a bill to pay which the guitarist split with me. They didn't ask again. :)
  15. SunnBass

    SunnBass All these blankets saved my life.

    Aug 31, 2010
    Columbia, Mo
    Where's mouthmw?
    He runs this same rig and swears by it.
    I asked him many questions, he's super nice.
    With his help I ended up with the same rig.:bassist:
  16. MontanaBassDude


    Sep 20, 2011
    It isn't the under-powering, it's the distorted signal put out by over-driving an underpowered amp that bass speakers don't dig.
  17. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    As long as the overdriving doesn't exceed the power handling limits, it'll be fine. Only with the tweeter on do you need to worry about overdriving an amp, and that's because it's very easy to OVERpower a tweeter with distortion coming from a cranked amp. And it doesn't sound very good to have the tweeter on when overdriving an amp, anyway. Woofers? Not a problem.
  18. B-string

    B-string Supporting Member

    ^ totally agree.
  19. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    Please PLEASE let's not go down that road again. Doesn't it suffice to tell the guy that his head will work fine with that cab?

    If you guys mention ONE WORD about DC voltage I'm going to lose my mind!
  20. B-string

    B-string Supporting Member

    Okay.....square wave :D :bag:

    I found your mind screaming down my road. Should I go out and catch it? :D
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

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