#1
Hi, How Many watts will i need for a small gig?

or will i need a really powerful pa system?

answers appreciated...
#2
A 30 watt should be more than enough for most small gigs. Depending on the size of the place, you could probably go as low as a 15 watt maybe.
#3
Depends where you go. Some places have a PA system and mic you up, some places you need all the firepower you get.

It also depends on tube vs. solid state. For example, a 100W tube is going to be much louder than a 100W solid state.

An amp that's a pretty good value and can be found relatively cheap on craigslist, I would suggest the Peavey Bandit. 80W of analog solid state power. All of them can be connected to an extended cab, too.
#4
If the venue has a PA system, which it should, then all you need really is about 15w tube or about 40w solid state. Putting a mic to your amp and having most of the sound go through the PA will make up for the lack of volume. The techs there will explain it all and do it for you. If it doesn't have a PA system, like it's just a bar or something, you're going to want about 40w tube or 80w solid state to clearly come out above a drum kit.

Really though ask the sound techs that work at the venue, they'll know what you need and what can be done better than anyone online can.
#5
its varies greatly.

first, how big do you mean by small/medium. for my band, a small gig is 150 people in a fairly large hall. for you it may mean a small club with 50 people. so that matters.

if there is a PA with the ability to mic up the amp, use that. regardless of how loud your amp is, this is a great option because it allows you to control the mix much more easily

as mentioned, solid state or tube matters. also, the layout of your amp (1x12, 2x12, 4x12, 4x10) matters as this does effect projection.

generally though, a 40-50 watt tube amp is adequate for most small gigs.
#6
I would say 40 watts, if you want any headroom. I have my 40 watt turned up to about 4 at small/medium gigs unmiced but its just safer to go higher than lower. I usually gig with my 80 watt twin.
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#7
With a tube amp you want as little headroom as possible. I'd use a 15w and crank it. For a solid state, get as high as you want to and leave it down low.
#8
a 30-40 watt TUBE can do almost any gig provided that there is a PA....but almost ever gig requires a PA.

a gig that doesnt require a PA is a concert venue and they have a huge sound system to mic into.

the only time you need a huge amp is A a massive stadium, B a bushleague hichkville gig with no sound system outdoors, or C where your playing heavy metal.

i would say unless you going semi larger gigs even a 15-20 watter can be fine for most classic/rock/rven hard rocdk music. hell, you got a decdent PA you could rock a 5 to ten watt tuber if its high quality and sounds good.

i know plently of gigging musiciains who wont go near a 50-60 watt combo because they claim it is ludacris amount of power. i agree.
Last edited by ikey_ at May 17, 2011,
#9
(No PA)
Not less than 30w Tube, 50w SS
not smaller than 1x12 Speaker

(PA)
not less than 10W Tube, 30w SS.
not smaller than 1X10

Obviously with a full PA system you could go down as far as 5w tube (People gig with 5W 1x10's all the time), but I wouldn't recommend going quieter than 10w tube/30w Solid State because you'd want to be able to use your amp as a monitor, just in case.

It also depends on what your bassist/other guitarist is using. Ideally, you should be able to match volume with your #2 Guitar and your bassist's amp should be roughly 4 times the wattage your guitar amp is rated at (the bass wattage-to-perceived-volume ratio is really skewed compared to a guitar's).
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Last edited by kangaxxter at May 16, 2011,
#10
Quote by Lee Makky
Hi, How Many watts will i need for a small gig?

or will i need a really powerful pa system?

answers appreciated...

If it's going to be fed through a PA system, you can probably get away with 5W valve I think (not having gigged myself but it's an opinion). Standalone it depends on what you're competing with. Probably a minimum of a 50W valve amp with another guitarist and a drummer.
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#12
Quote by trueamerican
With a tube amp you want as little headroom as possible. I'd use a 15w and crank it. For a solid state, get as high as you want to and leave it down low.


That's not something you can assume. Sure for rock and other lower gained genres, a good tube amp cranked will probably have unbeatable tone. But if you play metal, or just straight cleans, headroom is your best friend.

I think that how many watts you need depends a lot on your drummer, if you have one. If you don't, 30W SS/ 15W tube is fine. If you do, I wouldn't use anything below 75W SS/ 50W tube. If you're completely unmic'd, I'd recommend at least 100W, regardless of SS/tube.

Always better to have volume/headroom and not need it, than need it and not have it.
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#13
For small gigs we get by using a 1x10 12 watt valve amp. For medium gigs we still use the same amp but we mic it too.
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#14
WOOPS. meant 30-40 watt tube in my post, not solid state.

a 30 watt solid state would be underpowered for a gig
#15
Quote by kangaxxter
(No PA)
Not less than 30w Tube, 50w SS
not smaller than 1x12 Speaker

(PA)
not less than 10W Tube, 30w SS.
not smaller than 1X10

Obviously with a full PA system you could go down as far as 5w tube (People gig with 5W 1x10's all the time), but I wouldn't recommend going quieter than 10w tube/30w Solid State because you'd want to be able to use your amp as a monitor, just in case.

It also depends on what your bassist/other guitarist is using. Ideally, you should be able to match volume with your #2 Guitar and your bassist's amp should be roughly 4 times the wattage your guitar amp is rated at (the bass wattage-to-perceived-volume ratio is really skewed compared to a guitar's).

from my experience, small, low wattage amps are only really acceptable in relatively quiet situations where the amp isn't going to be drowned out by the other instruments anyway.

you need the amp to at least be heard over the drummer, on stage, without the PA system. the point of the PA system is to spread the sound and enable a bit of control over the balance of sound, not to make something louder that isn't already loud enough.

if the amp isn't loud enough to compete with the drum kit in the first place you're gonna have to boost the mic gain enough that you're more likely to have feedback problems.

having said that, i used to work for a band whose rhythm guitarist used a little fender pro-junior with a telecaster - a 15 watt 1x10 combo - tiny little thing. the drummer was extremely loud, but he could be heard clearly, and had plenty of headroom too. the amp only needs to be able to be heard alongside the drummer in order to be loud enough - it doesn't have to drown it out.
I like analogue Solid State amps that make no effort to be "tube-like", and I'm proud of it...

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