Those Who Use Hotplates...

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by Teahead, Jun 15, 2006.

  1. Teahead

    Teahead Member

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    Or any attenuator with a band, for that matter. Do you feel even the least amount of attenuation is too much? I can't satisfy myself with the -4db on my Hotplate, I know other types don't have the notched approach and allow for gradual reduction of volume, which one's are these and how do they compare?

    I run my AC30 just over half way and the sound is perfect for me, clean chime that bites back when I dig in, it's all I ever wanted from an amp. However, when I notch it back 4db, suddenly the edge is taken from the tone.

    I don't doubt it has plenty to do with the speaker's coasting along rather than being pushed. Would a different attenuator be better suited for the rather subtle amount of reduction I need?
     
  2. Platypus

    Platypus not in rivers, but in drops Supporting Member

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    It's the nature of the beast... there is no substitution for SPL.

    That being said I use my THD Hotplate constantly and use the bright switch/dial the EQ differently when it is in use to compensate. For me it's a compromise that I take to have cranked tone at lower volumes.

    I don't want to say 'no attenuator sounds perfect' because I've not played them all, but physics can't be changed.
     
  3. drolling

    drolling Member

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    You're probably more discerning than I, as I can't run my '63 Vibroverb RI without some attenuation.

    I use a 4 Ohm HotPlate, generally set to -4, occasionally -8dB, and notice very little denigration of my tone.

    But anything more really does take the edge off, even w/the bright switch engaged, so I'd be curious to hear about other types as well. Would be nice if there was something out there that lowered volume, but preserved the amp's sound intact.
     
  4. gulliver

    gulliver Member

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    It's a psychoacoustic effect; if you were to record the different signals and make them the same volume, they would sound about the same. The trick is to start at the most attenuated volume (lowest) and work your way up. Once you're as loud as you want to go, you will only be disappointed by backing off.
     
  5. 56_Special

    56_Special Member

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    Somebody once compared playing an attenuated amp to drinking through a straw. That about sums it up for me. Not only do you loose high end (I don't think it's merely a psychoacoustic effect, but that's just conjecture on my part), but you loose dynamics as well. I turn the knob on my Weber Mini-Mass until my bandmates stop complaining, which is usually well past the point where I can use attenuation without being bothered by it much. I've ordered a Power Scaling Box from London Power. After I have it installed, I'll report back as to whether or not its an improvement (fingers crossed).

    Martin
     
  6. gulliver

    gulliver Member

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    Of course you lose dynamics, the whole idea is to push the power tubes into compression and clipping (if your amp can do it). It's not for everyone, but it is what it is.
     
  7. 56_Special

    56_Special Member

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    You misunderstood me. I mean you loose dynamics compared to the unattenuated tone. That is, if your amp is dimed, it will have more dynamics unattenuated than it will attenuated.

    These are my perceptions anyway. No disrespect to those of you who love your attenuators. I'm sure this is all very rig and context dependent.

    Martin
     
  8. Stressfest

    Stressfest Supporting Member

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    I've found a cheap pair of ear plugs and a complete disregard for everyone around gives me a better tone :)
     
  9. TieDyedDevil

    TieDyedDevil Member

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    On stage I've never really noticed a degradation at either the -4 or -8 settings.
     
  10. cbpickin

    cbpickin Tweed Supporting Member Silver Supporting Member

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    I use a 2 ohm Hotplate with my BF Super Reverb and I don't find any serious loss of high end or tone. As a matter of fact, that amp is basically useless for me without the Hotplate. It is too loud for most of the places I play and forget about in the house or rehearsal. For outdoor gigs, it is great, but that is not our regular thing. With the Hotplate, I can enjoy what a cranked Super does, yet still hear everyone else in the band.
     

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