pedal to amp damage?

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by Devin, Jan 26, 2012.

  1. Devin

    Devin Low Voltage Supporting Member

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    has anyone ever used a pedal in a way which damaged an amplifier? what were the circumstances that lead to this happening?

    Im just curious because its something i think about when messing around with volumes on pedals, but not something i have ever experienced.

    can it happen at low amp volumes?
     
  2. The_Wretched

    The_Wretched Supporting Member

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    I've never heard of this before. I guess it could happen. i.e. combo is used with a pedal that has way too much bass and causes rattle to escalate to the point where it damages the casing or board.
     
  3. theanalogdream

    theanalogdream Supporting Member

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    Super-hard-on's are notorious for this.
     
  4. scolfax

    scolfax Member

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    Is this true, or just a rumor?
     
  5. spookyelectric

    spookyelectric Supporting Member

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    I'd like to know too-- I had a guy at a music store tell me that a ZVex SHO destroyed the transformer on his Marshall amp.
     
  6. digiTED

    digiTED rock > talk

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    It's hard to imagine a tranny going south thanks to a booster unless there was an impedance mismatch or some other amp health issue already.

    I could image a speaker getting blown if it's max wattage is close to the amp's and you hit it with a massively hot signal. A huge booster aka SHO or a wildly oscillating delay could push things over the edge me thinks.

    Sent from my personal mobile thingy using whatever app this is
     
  7. keepingitweird

    keepingitweird Member

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    I had a SHO for a couple of years...ran it hard into the front end of my amp...no damage, but as the saying goes, YMMV.
     
  8. Geosh

    Geosh Supporting Member

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    I had a solid state Fender amp (Studio 85 I think) that died after a friend plugged in his Liverpool Sans Amp pedal with the output cranked way up on accident. A strum or two and the amp just stopped making noise. Speaker tested ok though when I hooked it up to another amp.
     
  9. Devin

    Devin Low Voltage Supporting Member

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    hmmm... no dramatic sparks or flame?
     
  10. jkokura

    jkokura Member

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    Never hear it before.

    In theory, about the worst experience I can think of is blowing a speaker. Nels Cline talks about doing that in the most recent PG rig rundown.

    As far as I know, very little can actually damage the parts inside an amp that a pedal can do. Power surges and spikes are your enemy.

    Jacob
     
  11. CodeMonk

    CodeMonk Member

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    I've never seen it happen nor have I had to repair an amp that has been damaged by a pedal.
    At least no one has ever told me their amp died because of a pedal.
    If the volume is up to loud you may get excessive vibration, which can damage an amp or the speaker over time. But that's about it AFAIK.
     
  12. jkokura

    jkokura Member

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    Did you take it to a repair shop? What did they say the problem was?

    Jacob
     
  13. Devin

    Devin Low Voltage Supporting Member

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    they call it an IC chip... because I cant C whats inside...

    get it?
     
  14. Montez

    Montez Member

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    Many solid-state amps have a maximum input voltage rating. Usually 1.5 to 2v rms. Several boosters and ODs even EMG pickups can push far beyond that. While I have personally never seen an amps electronics damaged by a hot booster, theoretically damage could occur even at low volumes. Tube amps are substantially more tolerant to boosters. Usually tube amp damage would be limited to the speaker or a really overheated output transformer(rare). You would have to be fully cranked to see this kind of damage.
     
  15. Jammer2393

    Jammer2393 Member

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    I know on the Caroline website they say that they are not responsible for any damage done to your amp. Soooooo... I dont know, they could have easily put the warning there because of rumors. and it does make the pedal seem more impressive :)
     
  16. AXXA

    AXXA Supporting Member

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    My small tube combos have been subjected to boost pedals 99% of the time I've had them, and I've never had any problems. My original preamp tubes aren't even worn out. I've heard that massive boosts can wear out preamp tubes a little quicker, but thats it. And that may even be a rumor.

    Earlier today I ran an octave multiplexer> ultimate octave> fuzz factory> rat> lpb-1, with all of them on and at max volume, and my tweaker still works. It was freakin loud and crazy though!
     
  17. Montez

    Montez Member

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    Assuming the amp is running correct plate currents, it is next to impossible to damage a preamp tube with a boost. When you crank up the amps gain to stoner distortion you are doing the equivalent of hitting the amp input with a hot boost. The distortion is a result of pushing the tube to saturation or "clipping". There is actually so little current flowing even during clip that premature wear is of little concern. The power tubes carry far more current and hitting them with a clipped signal is a bit more abusive. Even still there is little wear on the tubes assuming plate currents are within spec. Again this is assuming the amp is pure tube. Many modern amps are hybrids that have solid state components in the signal path. Solid state is more sensitive to overload. A well engineered amp such as Marshall will have taken into account these possibilities and over-engineered the circuit to compensate for the anticipated abuse. Other amps maybe not so tolerant. I had a Crate tube amp that the first gain stage was an op-amp. It clearly stated "Max input signal 2v rms" in the manual. (It was a horrid little amp)
     
  18. guitarpkr67

    guitarpkr67 Supporting Member

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    I doubt it.
     
  19. Montez

    Montez Member

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    The SHO is capable of appx 3.5v rms. Though I have never heard of one damaging any amp, it could exceed the max input ratings of SS amps. I would be particularly careful if you put it in the effects loop post preamp in a ss amp.
     
  20. spentron

    spentron Member

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    If you turn your amp up all the way FIRST, so that anything ready to die, will, then it will be much less likely to wait until you crank up some pedal in front of it.

    I think that's actually the level of undesired distortion, above which it is impossible to make a clean sound at any setting. Even dirt stages may not sound right.
     

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