Attenuator question.


Is it safe to use a 25 watt attenuator with a 40 watt amp (Marshall DSL40C) if I don't crank the amp past 1/2 way? Just looking to get the power tubes starting to cook a little while playing at a reasonable level. I don't want to do anything stupid out of ignorance.

Thanks in advance for your input.


Probably not safe. Once the power tubes are starting to clip you are already hitting peak wattage, though perhaps only short duration. That said the attenuator may not take it for long and it might be very bad for the amp if it does blow while playing. I used to own a '71 Marshall Superlead 100 that had a volume pot that came on so quickly it put out 100 watts on 2, and it was only more gainy from there on up. Probably a side effect of the bright cap… Still your Marshall may have smoother taper pots but even then, with the volume on 1/2 it may be well towards 40 watts already.

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