Speaker wattage

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So I'm wondering.....Is it better to have a cab that takes more watts than the amp can put out, or an amp rated higher than the cab?? My current cab takes 1000 watts, and my amp puts 750 watts into it, but for curiosity's sake I'd like some feedback. Also because I'm looking into a new cab. Thanks
 
O

odominguez

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Hello There. You should try and get an amp that;s higher in power than your cabinet.

First reason would be that if you have a lower output amp, you might need to turn it up more than a higher output amp and this might bring up the noise floor coming out of your speaker.

Second reason in my opinion would be that is safer to control volume on a higher output amp than cranking it up on a lower output amp so that you can get good sound. It will keep your cab in better condition.

I;m sure some of the other guys might have reasons of their own on this topic, but I hope this is a good start.
 

kho

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You need to be careful though... if your amp is dishing out more wattage than your cabinet is rated for, you can potentially damage your speakers or get a muddy, distorted sound if you crank up your amp.

What is it you don't like about your current cab? Or just looking for a change?

I'm just thinking with that kind of kick-ass wattage, it can't be a volume issue!
 
O

odominguez

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Yes, kho is right, you would need to be careful with you main volume for this to work.
 
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I blew one of the speakers in my cab, and neither my local dealer or behringer have been good about the replacement. Therefore I'm thinking of getting some new speakers for the cab. I liked the aluminum cones in the cab at first, but now I'm afraid one, or all, of the other speakers will eventually go.. I've found some good deals on Eminence speakers, and that's why the question about the wattage.
 
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I'd go with the higher wattage amp as well. The higher-powered amp has more headroom when it's running at a lower power level. Like Oliver said, the noise floor level is lower, and you get better transient response. Ideally, you could run this way and still stay well below the speaker's maximum power rating.

Also, amplifier output impedance and speaker impedance both weigh in when it comes to power delivery. Ideally you would want them to match for maximum efficiency.
 
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naetog said:
I blew one of the speakers in my cab

What was the cause?
The speaker can be blown either way:
when your amp is too powerful, and pushes the speaker over its limits
when your amp is not powerful enough, and it clips when you cranck it.

By the way, which head and which cab do you have?
 
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I'm not sure how exactly I blew it. I never had to turn up the amp past 4 and my nuts were quaking. It's an SWR amp, puts 750W into 4 ohms, and 450W into 8 ohms. The Behringer cab takes(took) 1000W easily, so I figure it's just the speakers. My buddy had a Behringer 2x10 along with an Eden 4x10 powered by a GK amp rated @ 540W max and the Behringer blew a speaker. At this point I'm inclined to just get 4 new speakers since the cab sounded good before. Replace it with something more reliable.
 
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If you think about that it takes a double output (e g from 40 to 80W) to increase 3dB in volume you are pretty safe. How often do you rally peak the amp? There should be plenty of margin / mats
 
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It's possible that the the moving parts of the speaker became fatigued. When it comes to power consumption, it's really the voice coil that takes the hit. The spider and front suspension of the speaker tone can get tired from the inward and outward transit of the cone. This can cause the voice coil to go off center, and can drag on the inside of the channel in the magnet. The voice coil then self destructs.

Spikes (transients) tend to drive an amplifier to it's full power instantaneously. This tends to push or pull a speaker cone to it's maximum transit position, thereby stressing the suspension. The voice coil can bottom out and bend out of shape. Also, the voice coil dissipates power in the form of heat, which can warp the voice coil form.

FWIW

O
 
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naetog said:
I'm not sure how exactly I blew it. I never had to turn up the amp past 4 and my nuts were quaking. It's an SWR amp, puts 750W into 4 ohms, and 450W into 8 ohms. The Behringer cab takes(took) 1000W easily, so I figure it's just the speakers. My buddy had a Behringer 2x10 along with an Eden 4x10 powered by a GK amp rated @ 540W max and the Behringer blew a speaker. At this point I'm inclined to just get 4 new speakers since the cab sounded good before. Replace it with something more reliable.

SWR power ratings are somehow 'optimistic' on some models.
Noticeably, I've heard more than a 750's user complain about the head not being loud enough.
It's likely that you were running your head to clip, and the clipping caused the speaker's failure.

One important thing about SWR heads it the use of the Aural Enhancer.
It cuts more and more mids as you turn it to the right.
And a mid-scooped sound, tough cool for some players, can be easly buried in the mix, and force the player to increase volume, eventually causing the head to clip.
The Aural Enhancer is flat when fully counter-clockwise, so if you start at 12'oclock position you've already scooped a lot of midrange.
 
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