Humidifying a Guitar Amp?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by StevenO, Feb 14, 2016.

  1. StevenO

    StevenO Member

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    Not sure if this is a silly idea, but I'm wondering about where or not this is a good idea. I keep an old Vibrolux Reverb at my family's cottage, in the finished basement (it's basically a house), and according to the little portable humidity detector I have, the basement reaches only about 17% humidity (maybe even lower) in the winter months. I know this would not be good enough for most guitars, particularly acoustics, but what about amps? I'm a little worried that the lack of humidity might cause some issues with drying out the speakers or maybe even compromising the structural integrity of the cabinet.

    Would putting a little home made humidifier (wet sponge in a little snack container with holes punched in the lid) in the back of the cabinet be a good idea? Or are my worries a little unfounded. The amp sounds fantastic and I'd rather not harm it.
     
  2. Hefalump

    Hefalump Member

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    I would not worry about humidifing an amp, it would do harm to electronics....better to be kept dry.
     
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  3. StevenO

    StevenO Member

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    Right now, the amp is in a cedar-walled room with wood floors, area rug, dry-walled ceiling, and sitting on top of an old TV stand. I know high humidity could cause rust, just wasn't sure if lack of humidity could also create issues.

    Thanks everybody! Might buy a slip cover anyhow.
     
  4. Baxtercat

    Baxtercat Member

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    In fact, I DE-humidify my amp space.
    Before I got this the amp controls would sound scratchy [which of course would go away after running the amps and heating up the chassis.]

    [​IMG]
     
  5. Dave_C

    Dave_C Member

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    Always better to keep electronics as dry as possible.
     
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  6. Torren61

    Torren61 Member

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    Why would you want to humiliate a guitar amp? What kind of monster ARE you? :anon
     
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  7. StevenO

    StevenO Member

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    While I'm sure you're just being humourous, I feel I explained my reasoning adequately. BUT... Just to avoid confusion... It's not the amp part I'm worried about, it's the lack of humidity having an effect on the speakers and less so the cabinet. I'd rather not have the speakers dry out. I would never want the circuit to experience so much humidity so as to be wet, which of course wasn't my objective for this thread.
     
  8. texstrat

    texstrat Member

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    Ummmm. Do not humidify your amp
     
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  9. dwoverdrive

    dwoverdrive Supporting Member

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    Let's not forget the ill effects humidity can have on speakers. Many vintage speakers have a great sound that is contributed to by being very dry. Some people throw silica gel packets into amp cabs just to dry the cones out. Living in the Midwest where we have very humid summers and very dry winters, it's a very real factor.
     
  10. StevenO

    StevenO Member

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    Perfect, thanks for the information! It's not something I worry about TOO much, just a bit of a curiosity. The only reason I even asked in the first place is that I noticed a speaker had started to separate at the seem and wondered if it was due to excessive dryness or lack of humidity.

    :)

    No need for the sass, it's just a question. I have nearly $30000 (not bragging, just a reality) worth of guitar amps alone, I'd rather not ruin any of them, especially as they are vintage, rare, or otherwise desirable.
     
  11. swiveltung

    swiveltung Member

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    I'm thinkin' keep the humidity low and dry rather than up!
     
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  12. StevenO

    StevenO Member

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    I'm thinking you're correct. At the moment, I have the humidity in that room hovering around the 30% mark, a little on the low side for say... An acoustic sitting out in the open, maybe, but there's also a vintage drum set in the same room and I'd rather protect those as well. 15-20% humidity just seemed a little too low for the room, personally.
     
  13. Phletch

    Phletch Member

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    That's always a good move regardless. Like the others have stated, humidity and electronics (and metals) don't go together, so dry is good in that regard. With regard to the wood, provided the tolex is in good shape, the low humidity shouldn't be a problem. Unwanted drying effects are only a problem when the environment is hot and dry accompanied by excessive air circulation (ie, wind). Cool and dry is generally the best storage environment.

    If you're really worried about the speaker(s) drying out and you regularly play the amp and still want to preserve the original speakers, you can always remove the originals, store them hermetically sealed, buy a set of faithful replacements, and reinstall the originals should you ever want to sell the amp, kind of like what a lot of car collectors do with the original, OEM tires.
     
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  14. dwoverdrive

    dwoverdrive Supporting Member

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    I'm guessing there could be such a thing as too dry as well since you mentioned the speaker separating like that. I wonder about that sometimes. You've got me curious...
     
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  15. texstrat

    texstrat Member

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    No need for the sass, it's just a question. I have nearly $30000 (not bragging, just a reality) worth of guitar amps alone, I'd rather not ruin any of them, especially as they are vintage, rare, or otherwise desirable.[/QUOTE]

    No sass from I here... I just gave you my opinion. Your chances of ruining them are greater with high humidity than low humidity. Common sense to me...
     
  16. icr

    icr Member

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    If you like this look. Some do.
    [​IMG]
     
  17. StevenO

    StevenO Member

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    There seems to be a misunderstanding here. When I say humidifying, I don't mean making the amp wet... I would certainly never humidify room so much as to cause dew or moisture to be visible, just as you wouldn't do that with an acoustic instrument. I'm not sure if some people are being intentionally difficult in understanding that or if it's just trying to add a little bit of humour (can get lost in translation through text).

    As I thought I made clear, and I honestly don't think my question is a stupid one, my curiosity was in whether or not an environment being too dry can be an issue for speakers. That's all. In any case, I have my answers and this horse has been beaten to death. So I'm going go do some playing!

    :)
     

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