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Old 8th October 2003, 04:52 PM   #11
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Default Have to ask...

Just wondering...thinking about re-building an old Ampeg (mid 60's era). Never really liked the way it sounds. Someone has replaced the speaker with something from Radio Shack some years ago. Speaker still playes, but tonality...

If I was to replace the speaker, why couldn't I use an "normal" "full range" speaker?

Also, been playing guitar for only a few years. And no one has been able to answer me about why every amp I see, has the rear of the cabinet open...speaker not in a sealed/vented type chamber?

Thanks,

Rino
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Old 8th October 2003, 05:38 PM   #12
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Quote:
If I was to replace the speaker, why couldn't I use an "normal" "full range" speaker?
Guitar amps need a speaker that rolls off in the 5Khz range to sound right. It will be VERY buzzy if you use any kind of distortion through a full range speaker. That, and guitar speakers are made to have a certain amount of cone "breakup". You're better off getting a speaker made for guitar.
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Old 9th October 2003, 09:34 AM   #13
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Whilst I agree with the advice that you are better off with a guitar speaker in general, I don't agree with the comments on how a guitar sounds through a full-range speaker.

I, my sons and several of my gigging friends regularly use my designs cabs that use---full-range speakers. These are driven by my design valve amps and sound superb. The amp design are class A and no feedback so they can be overdriven hard without the nasties appearing that typical guitar amps produce.

It's true that a typical modern guitar amp driven into a full range speaker can sound horrible - for much the reasons given but it doesn't have to be so and you shut off a whole universe of superb tone if you just stick to conventional wisdom...

ciao
James
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Old 9th October 2003, 01:43 PM   #14
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To each his/her own! That's one of the best things about playing guitar- everyone has their own style. You have to admit though, that 99% of guitarists would NEVER play through full range cabinets (unless you have a tone-shaping circuit in the amp to simulate a guitar cabinet).

Quote:
Originally posted by James D.
Whilst I agree with the advice that you are better off with a guitar speaker in general, I don't agree with the comments on how a guitar sounds through a full-range speaker.

I, my sons and several of my gigging friends regularly use my designs cabs that use---full-range speakers. These are driven by my design valve amps and sound superb. The amp design are class A and no feedback so they can be overdriven hard without the nasties appearing that typical guitar amps produce.

It's true that a typical modern guitar amp driven into a full range speaker can sound horrible - for much the reasons given but it doesn't have to be so and you shut off a whole universe of superb tone if you just stick to conventional wisdom...

ciao
James

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Old 9th October 2003, 02:00 PM   #15
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Default ...Non Est Disputandum...

Quote:
You have to admit though, that 99% of guitarists would NEVER play through full range cabinets
yeah - we might argue the odd percentage point but really that's moot...

Most wouldn't because they don't understand how to set their head up to do so and what tone variations that would open up...

And it really doesn't matter if they are happy with their sound.

BUT when discussing the engineering of guitar amplifiers and cabs we should care and try to understand the differences and what causes them...

ciao

James (jumping off his soap box)
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Old 9th October 2003, 03:43 PM   #16
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Quote:
BUT when discussing the engineering of guitar amplifiers and cabs we should care and try to understand the differences and what causes them...
You're absolutely correct, sir. (now what do we have behind door number 1 )
Understanding that when a signal is clipped hard, as in any guitar amp (tube or solid state) on the distortion channel, it generates amazing amounts of harmonics, which in any normal guitar amp from the last 50 years, are rolled off by the speaker. In fact, many guitar amps use a capacitor in the high gain stages to turn off some of the high end before it even gets to the speaker!
You didn't quote me completely. If you either design a preamp with built in cabinet simulation, or use one of the many tone boxes (yuck!) out there by digitech, etc. you can run direct into the board, direct into the PA, whatever, which is basically the same, I assume, as what you're doing. In other words, electronics are doing the same thing, basically, as the speaker cabinet. It's not the best approach for all out raw tone though. Let's face it- tone was defined by rock and jazz legends from the past, working with and abusing what they had. At least in America, a good guitar tone means tubes played through Celestions (or something similar). This doesn't mean necessarily that someone shouldn't dare to break the rules. Many have successfully. But, the greatest ones have always stayed close to that old formula. Why do you think that is?
Don't think that I'm telling you that you're wrong for what you're doing. I think it's cool that you're doing your own thing. But when someone gets on here and asks why their amp doesn't sound right, it would be stupid not to stick to what will give proven results- not 1 guy and his band's opinion of what sounds good. Chances are very good that he will be happy with a good guitar speaker, and that a fullrange will sound like trash to him in that application (as it does to nearly everybody else who has tried it).
Quote:
Most wouldn't because they don't understand how to set their head up to do so and what tone variations that would open up...

And it really doesn't matter if they are happy with their sound.
Maybe you're the next big thing and I just missed it, but I'll stick with ratty old non-fullrange speakers.
Oh, and by the way- I did build an amp once that used a bullet tweeter that would switch on by relay on the clean channel (but it was a VERY clean channel).
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Old 9th October 2003, 05:43 PM   #17
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Actually a lot of the cheaper amps just have solid state output stages and also with ICs.
What makes a few of them special in sound is the preamp (which should be tube IMO).
Youll find loads of schematics on the net about some cool commercial products from Marshall and the sort.

You might get a real nice sound finding the appropriate preamp.
The question is how far that would take you as the LM1875 wont put out much watts and will probably have problems driving a 15" and being louder than even some jazz-drummer.

If I was to build a guitar amp Id use a bridged-parallel gainclone to get more power.

Go ahead build a nice preamp and try your LM1875.
You can still exchange the output stage.

Cheers
Jens


Talking about metal:
When I was still playing metal I used the BOSS Metal Zone.
Ever tried that pedal?
I wouldnt use it anymore as Im going for tuby sounds only but for metal it was brilliant.
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Old 9th October 2003, 06:23 PM   #18
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The preamp is responsible for the basic sound of the amp, but it's the output stage that makes a great amp. I didn't realize this at first and thought it wouldn't matter what you used behind the right preamp. I remember years ago telling one older guy this at a music store, and him just shaking his head and giving me a look like I was clueless. He was right! Some of the suggestions on modifying the output impedance are good ones. I think it could sound good if you like a punchy and clean output stage sound, but you just can't beat a good tube output stage with a tube rectifier. I have heard some solid state preamps run through tube output stages that would amaze you. For you metal heads- try what Joensd was saying with a Boss pedal, only through a p/p tube output stage. Killer metal sounds!
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Old 10th October 2003, 09:26 PM   #19
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Thanks for the advice guys! I thought that it was a problem, it just sounded off...if you know what I meen. The only thing though...when I play my Les Paul Studio through it (cranked of corse), if I hit the right notes (unfortunately only happens once in a blue moon) when playing some Jimi Page, it really really sounds good. But only then...strange eh. Sounds very accurate...I wonder if Mr. Page was playing around with things to get his famous sound? Hummmm.

Rino
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Old 13th October 2003, 12:32 PM   #20
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Assuming you're looking for a clean sound, the thing that will make the most difference is input impedance. Most passive pickups have a very inductive output, meaning there's a big loss of high frequencies when it's driving a typical 47K line input. Upping this to 1M or 2M gives a much better sound, although this might lead to other problems with the LM1875 (noise and DC offset, for instance).

Cheers
IH
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