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Running two 5e3's

timc

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
388
I have two Clarke 5E3's, and I want to run both for volume reasons. Instead of using A/B/Y or other switch boxes, as i just want to run both all the time, can I plug guitar into say amp1 channel 1 input 1, then run a instrument cable from amp1 channel 1 input 2 to amp2 channel 1 or 2 input 1 or 2? Will this hurt anything???
 

wgs1230

Fully Intonatable
Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,261
It won't hurt the amps but it won't protect you from ground loop hum, either. The reason to go with a a modern ABY (the Radial Big Shot can be had for under $100) with an internal transformer is to have the flexibility to lift the ground to one of the two amps and kill the hum. I can understand the appeal of simplicity, but ground loops are tough to live with when you want a clean or semi-clean sound.
 

JCM 800

Member
Messages
6,614
You should be able to jumper just fine. There is a small chance you may have some ground issues. Give it a shot. Won't hurt.
 

ripgtr

Member
Messages
10,570
It won't hurt the amps but it won't protect you from ground loop hum, either. The reason to go with a a modern ABY (the Radial Big Shot can be had for under $100) with an internal transformer is to have the flexibility to lift the ground to one of the two amps and kill the hum. I can understand the appeal of simplicity, but ground loops are tough to live with when you want a clean or semi-clean sound.
Just a note on that from my experience.

I have one of those, and the transformer is a great idea, but I found it affects the tone too much. They make ones with buffers to avoid that issue or you can run a buffer first but then you have that in the equation, if that is an issue. So, that didn't work out for me. Though I found I had less of an issue with both amps being Fender (on SF and one BF), no loop there, but did get it between different brands.

I DO use the big shot to do channel switching on my 5e3 clone, but that is another whole subject, lol
 

71strat

Member
Messages
9,570
The Roger Mayer 4644 Drive also has a Dual Drive, No Loss Splitter, and you can run it into 2 different amplifiers/pedal chains with no problem, and no tone loss.

This pedal also makes a Timmy sound like it has a blanket on it, if youre worried about it mucking with the original signal. Its Very Easy to dial in to match your original signal.

 

Diablo1

Member
Messages
620
You don't really need any splitters or boxes to prevent ground loops and hum. Plug your guitar cable in amp 1 and use a grounded plug on amp 1. Plug an instrument cable between amp 1 and amp 2 as you proposed. Use a ground lift adapter to plug in amp 2. This means that amp 2 has its chassis grounded by the instrument cable between amps and is at the same potential as the chassis of amp 1. There will be no hum.
 

rmconner80

Cantankerous Luddite
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
4,152
You can use the trick above, i.e. a special cable with the ground sleeve lifted at one end. However in all the two amp solutions I've ever run I've never been satisfied with the signal loss inherent in the extra cabling / slightly different ground potentials until I used the transformer isolated box. It just works / sounds / feels so much better and the difference is immediately recognizable.

I've used the Lehle Dual, P-Split, and Mayer Crossroads all to great effect. For no switching the P-Split can't be beat, just screw it into the back of one of the amps and you're all set.
 

ripgtr

Member
Messages
10,570
I've used the Lehle Dual
Which one? Looks like they have buffered and non buffered. I do know I used the Big Shot, which is non, and the high end loss on the transformer side was very noticeable. If their non buffered one works without doing that, I would certainly be interested.
 

Diablo1

Member
Messages
620
You can use the trick above, i.e. a special cable with the ground sleeve lifted at one end. However in all the two amp solutions I've ever run I've never been satisfied with the signal loss inherent in the extra cabling / slightly different ground potentials until I used the transformer isolated box. It just works / sounds / feels so much better and the difference is immediately recognizable.

I've used the Lehle Dual, P-Split, and Mayer Crossroads all to great effect. For no switching the P-Split can't be beat, just screw it into the back of one of the amps and you're all set.
The reason you get signal loss is because the instrument cable connecting the two amps is being plugged into jack 2, and that jack is designed to be the low gain input. The way to avoid that is to use a stereo plug on your guitar cable. Plug that into jack 1 (high gain) on both amps.
 

ripgtr

Member
Messages
10,570
I have two Clarke 5E3's, and I want to run both for volume reasons. Instead of using A/B/Y or other switch boxes, as i just want to run both all the time, can I plug guitar into say amp1 channel 1 input 1, then run a instrument cable from amp1 channel 1 input 2 to amp2 channel 1 or 2 input 1 or 2? Will this hurt anything???
No, it should not hurt anything. The conversation kind of went into the whole ABY thing, with isolation, but if they are the same amp, and both plugged into the same power, then most likely, they are at the same ground potential and it shouldn't cause an issue. Try it first, and see, and then deal with the hum issue if you actually have an issue.

As noted above, go into input 1 on the second amp. Plug in input #1 on first amp, guitar cable from input 2 of that amp to input #1 of the second amp. Just like jumpering both channels with a cable on a 5e3
 

Laurent Brondel

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,333
2 solutions if you get a ground loop, A/B boxes and FX boxes can be great but they all have buffers and/or isolation transformers and that may or may not have a negative impact.
With both amps definitely grounded on the AC, on the shielded lead cord (not the AC cord…) that goes to the 2nd amp, remove the ground from only one side of the cord (the jack going into the 2nd amp input). That's the free solution.
Use an Ebtech Hum-X on one amp AC cord, that's the $67.72 solution.
 

Laurent Brondel

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,333
but if they are the same amp, and both plugged into the same power, then most likely, they are at the same ground potential and it shouldn't cause an issue.
It's precisely the opposite: when one guitar is plugged into 2 grounded amps, you get 2 ground references -even if it is the same ground, ground is the Earth-, hence a ground loop. Isolating one of the grounds with an Ebtech or similar, or disconnecting the ground from one end on one of the instruments leads breaks that loop.
 

rmconner80

Cantankerous Luddite
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
4,152
The reason you get signal loss is because the instrument cable connecting the two amps is being plugged into jack 2, and that jack is designed to be the low gain input. The way to avoid that is to use a stereo plug on your guitar cable. Plug that into jack 1 (high gain) on both amps.
Still doesn't work for me, sounds / feels different.

I have tried it with passive A/B boxes, stereo cables, etc. I have also tried it with true transformer isolation.

Have you?
 

ripgtr

Member
Messages
10,570
It's precisely the opposite: when one guitar is plugged into 2 grounded amps, you get 2 ground references -even if it is the same ground, ground is the Earth-, hence a ground loop. Isolating one of the grounds with an Ebtech or similar, or disconnecting the ground from one end on one of the instruments leads breaks that loop.
I tried this a while back, and from memory ...
I can run my SFDR and BF pro reverb together with no issue. I was messing with doing it with the deluxe and a Sho Bud Twin (bf twin copy) and That was an issue.
I don't know that I would run an amp without a ground. I understand how it grounds through the other amp if there is a failure, but that does not sound like fun to me.
 

ripgtr

Member
Messages
10,570
Use an Ebtech Hum-X on one amp AC cord, that's the $67.72 solution.
That is interesting and might get be a solution to a host of issue.

Just a note, their pdf actually says -
"
IMPORTANT NOTE #2: Using a ground lift adapter is NOT SAFE for regular use. You can damage your equipment with
long term use (or in the case of guitar or bass rig, you put yourself in risk of electrocution!)
"
 
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flantrax

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,207
I run a dual mono rig a lot...usually a 5e3 & either a Victoria Ivy League or Princeton...I use an Axess Electronics BS-2 at the end of my pedalboard...it's a buffer/splitter that has an ISO out(ground lifted) and a phase switch...works great

Another nice thing is it's small and I can mount an MXR sized pedal on top
 






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