Can attenuators be used with...

Discussion in 'Amps/Cabs Tech Corner: Amplifier, Cab & Speakers' started by jockman, Jul 1, 2008.

  1. jockman

    jockman Member

    Messages:
    337
    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2004
    Location:
    East Sussex UK
    Solid state combos?
     
  2. Jef Bardsley

    Jef Bardsley Member

    Messages:
    2,959
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2007
    Location:
    Middle Massachusetts
    With most solid state amps, there's really no point. The power amp of your combo is not what's producing the distortion. In fact, that's one of the good things about solid state guitar amps - they deliver the same sound at any volume.

    Of course, things don't sound the same at lower volumes thanks to the way your ear works, and there's the contribution of the over-driven speakers, but you face those problems with an attenuator, as well.
     
  3. jockman

    jockman Member

    Messages:
    337
    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2004
    Location:
    East Sussex UK
    Thanks for that.
     
  4. Jahn

    Jahn Listens to Johnny Marr, plays like John Denver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    27,291
    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2007
    Location:
    NYC
    yep, a solid state with a master vol should be just fine. it's not like you're trying to crank a solid state amp to get that sweet transistor overdrive!
     
  5. aleclee

    aleclee TGP Tech Wrangler Staff Member

    Messages:
    11,255
    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Location:
    5868 ft above sea level
    Also, I've seen warnings about using attenuators w/SS amps.
     
  6. cochese

    cochese Supporting Member

    Messages:
    1,954
    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2006
    Not always true. The Scholz Power Soak was designed to be used with solid state amps as well as tube amps. I used one for a few years in the late 70's and early 80's with an old Peavey Standard Solid State amp. I would run the amp on full and use the Power Soak and it clipped in a very good way and had tons of sustain. Oddly enough quite recently my amp tech was working on one of these old Peaveys for a customer and discovered the same thing. He said the old Kustoms and some of the old solid state amps like Peaveys used such simple discrete circuitry it actually sounded quite good. Not the same type of tone as a great tube amp distorting but still useable.

    Just remember if you are a pedal guy and are using a good distortion box in front of a clean tube amp the distortion you are hearing is solid state.
     
  7. Riscchip

    Riscchip Supporting Member

    Messages:
    2,045
    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Location:
    Concord, CA
    Some attenuators can be damaged by a solid state poweramp. I believe the Hot Plate is one.
     
  8. Tone_Terrific

    Tone_Terrific Member

    Messages:
    25,250
    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2004
    Location:
    Canada-GTA
    I'd like to know the whys of this or of any damage to the amp.

    SS amps seem to have sweet spots in the control range just like tube amps, so, I can see using an attenuator to allow pushing the circuit a little harder, with the controls opened up.
    OD from SS can be vary a lot (good, bad, ugly).
     
  9. aleclee

    aleclee TGP Tech Wrangler Staff Member

    Messages:
    11,255
    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Location:
    5868 ft above sea level
    Yup. From the Hot Plate owners manual:
     

Share This Page