#1
Hey Guys,

New to slaving....I have a 100w SS Blackstar head that I want to get more wattage out of. Here are my questions:

1. Can you slave with a bass head for the power amp with a guitar head, any playing guitar of course? Will it sound good?

2. Slaving doesnt double your wattage for both heads, correct? It is just using the wattage from the power section slave, right?


Backstory: I have a 2x12 cab with Delta Pro 12as in it and they are massive 400w speakers each. Since I have the 100w head im only pushing 50w per speaker. I would like to have a few hundred watt head to be able to push a couple hundred watts or so per seaker. Any tips? Thanks!
#2
I think the most common response you'll get, and it's also coming from me... why?

Delta Pro 12a speakers are not guitar speakers. They are for pro-audio sound systems. You'd be better off investing in proper guitar speakers.
Gear: Gibson Les Paul Studio, Gibson SG Special, Fender Stratocaster, Fender Telecaster, Fender Jazzmaster, Gretsch Pro Jet, Carvin C350, Epiphone ES-339 P90, Epiphone ES-335 Pro. Peavey 6505, Sovtek MIG-100, Vox AC30, Peavey XXX.
#3
^ Delta Pro 12a's are EVM12L clone's, and they work for guitar, bass and pro audio just fine.

On subject
1. Yes, use the FX loop send from the guitar head if there is no slave out jack. Go into the FX loop return on the bass amp (this bypasses the bass pre-amp). It can sound great

2.slaving does not double the wattage of each head. slaving just gives you the ability to run a separate power amp to push more wattage than the original head has. it is also used as a secondary source for powering additional cabs (but your not doing this from what I gather).
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Last edited by Robbgnarly at May 19, 2016,
#4
Will it double your power? Maybe maybe not. If the master amp can access it's own power amp while still sending a singal to the slave amp the i would say yes, it could combine the total output just like playing through two amps. If you have to abandon the master's power amp then the slave would make the total output. The only reservation i have is, what if the preamp singal gets divided between the two amps, or has to work twice as hard to provide a singal to both power amps. Why would you do this? Ha why not?
#5
Quote by ShadowlandsTX
Hey Guys,

New to slaving....


Hey bud, you're like what, 2 centuries too late??


I think what you're trying to do is use a bass head to feed signal from guitar amp? Look at your amp and use line out if one and feed that into the fx return of the bass head or power amp in if you have one, that way you bypass the bass amp preamp and eq section. If it sounds ghastly, run it through the input on the front and eq it out. Start at low volume to make sure you have some hearing left.

I'd say look for a tube amp 100 watt preferably that should take care of your volume problems.
Judging by what you're after my guess would be that the 6505 will do you good.
#6
Quote by Robbgnarly
^ Delta Pro 12a's are EVM12L clone's, and they work for guitar, bass and pro audio just fine.


That's good information to know. I don't really like EVM12L speakers, I like my speakers to have grit and add color to the tone. Not that my opinion on that matters - different strokes for different folks.

I still have to shrug my shoulders and ask: why? Seems pointless to slam that much wattage into speakers unless you are wanting some ear busting clean headroom. If the OP isn't looking for high volume cleans (which I assume he isn't if he is using a Brit voiced Blackstar amp) a mid-humped speaker with higher sensitivity would accomplish the task of increasing overall loudness without having to deal with "slaving" another amp into the equation.

A pair of Eminence Governor speakers would give a mid bump to help cut through a mix, some Brit flavor/color, and be louder (102dB vs 99dB). If the OP likes the very neutral voice of the EVM clones, by all means, keep using them.
Gear: Gibson Les Paul Studio, Gibson SG Special, Fender Stratocaster, Fender Telecaster, Fender Jazzmaster, Gretsch Pro Jet, Carvin C350, Epiphone ES-339 P90, Epiphone ES-335 Pro. Peavey 6505, Sovtek MIG-100, Vox AC30, Peavey XXX.
#7
Quote by ThunderPunk
That's good information to know. I don't really like EVM12L speakers, I like my speakers to have grit and add color to the tone. Not that my opinion on that matters - different strokes for different folks.

I still have to shrug my shoulders and ask: why? Seems pointless to slam that much wattage into speakers unless you are wanting some ear busting clean headroom. If the OP isn't looking for high volume cleans (which I assume he isn't if he is using a Brit voiced Blackstar amp) a mid-humped speaker with higher sensitivity would accomplish the task of increasing overall loudness without having to deal with "slaving" another amp into the equation.

A pair of Eminence Governor speakers would give a mid bump to help cut through a mix, some Brit flavor/color, and be louder (102dB vs 99dB). If the OP likes the very neutral voice of the EVM clones, by all means, keep using them.


I have two 2x12 cabinets, each with a pair of Delta ProA's, and used them for some years (they're currently semi-retired). The cabinets were sized and ported to take advantage of the Delta's ability to get down to 52Hz easily, something most guitar speakers (including the Eminence Governors, which are barely usable at 80 - low E on a six-string - and have a resonant frequency of 101Hz) can't touch. I also had a pair of 1165 piezo tweeters built into each cabinet to more evenly disperse high end.

The reason for the extra power in my case was to allow the speaker to produce non-muddy bottom end, not for "ear busting clean headroom."

The OP can actually take a signal out of the preamp section of his amp head and send it to a power amp and from there into the Deltas. I used a Carvin HD1500, which will send about 800W to an 8 ohm load when bridged/mono. Those cost under $300 and are only about 9 lbs in weight. It's worth noting that 800W will run those 99dB Delta ProA speakers significantly louder than switching to 102 dB Eminence Governor speakers that will only handle up to 75W, and the total expenditure would only be about $100 more.

The ProA's aren't particularly neutral and are excellent guitar speakers (heavy as hell, though), but if you're looking to be able to EQ your choice of "mid hump" into a speaker, it's helpful to start with one that doesn't have quite as much of a hump baked into one frequency location.

I should point out to the OP that you're NOT going to be using the power amp that's in the current guitar amp to power the speakers *in addition* to whatever else you add on in any case.
Last edited by dspellman at May 19, 2016,
#8
Quote by ShadowlandsTX

1. Can you slave with a bass head for the power amp with a guitar head, any playing guitar of course? Will it sound good?

2. Slaving doesnt double your wattage for both heads, correct? It is just using the wattage from the power section slave, right?


1. You *can* use a bass head, but you won't want to go through the preamp section of that bass head, and if it's only a couple of hundred watts, you're aren't going to see that much benefit.

2. If you're running from the preamp of your current amp head to a different power amp, you're only going to be using the power in the second head. You really don't want to try to connect both power amps to the one 2x12; you'll ruin both amps.
#9
I think the most common response you'll get, and it's also coming from me... why?


ding ding ding...we have a winner.

If you already have a 100 watt amp, I agree, WHY? I can probably name a dozen professional musicians who have toured with 100 watt amps for 30 years. Just a few off the top of my head...Joe Walsh, Billy Gibbons, David Gilmour, Martin Barre, Eric Johnson, Tommy Shaw...Johnny Winter used 40 or 50 watt Music Man amps for years. I've used a 45 watt Fender Super Reverb for the past 15 years, never have I needed more for even big clubs and outdoor shows.

As for what you want to do, I've done it. Peavey practice amp through a Peavey PA head into a pair of 2x10 cabinets. Practice amp wouldn't produce enough volume for club gigs, plugged it into the PA head and it did well.

The primary amp you plug your guitar into is considered a preamp, secondary is a power amp. Since the preamp, in my case the practice amp, is sending a line signal into the power amp, the only wattage you'll be considering is the wattage of the power amp. It does not multiply the wattage of the preamp. It's a line signal, same as plugging a guitar in. So if you plug it into a 200 watt amp, you're getting 200 watts. I don't care if the preamp is a 300 watt amp, the power amp is still just 200 watts, that's what you get, you're using a line signal, not an amplified signal.

There is one caveat. A tube amp producing 100 watts will probably do better than a solid state amp at 100 watts, if they still figure wattage the same as they did 30 years ago, the wattage rating is not the same. A 50 watt tube amp at that time would match a 100 watt solid state.

Still, your existing 100 watt amp should do the trick for anywhere you're likely to play, unless you plan on playing an ampitheater the size of the Astrodome any time soon, in which case you'll most likely be miced through the PA and a 20 watt amp would do just as well. If you need more volume than a 100 watt amp, I remember how loud my 100 watt solid state amp was, you're looking to damage some ear drums. I've seen bands in arenas that size using 30 and 50 watt 1x12 combo amps. Mic it through the PA and carry on. If you need more onstage, run it through the monitors.

Sure it might be cool to try this but I see no reason for it. A 100 watt amp should be plenty, if you need more volume, you're into ear bleeding territory. As far as wattage, you'll get the same wattage running a 10 watt practice amp through a 200 watt power amp as running a 300 watt amp through it. 200 watts. I've run the practice amp through a 130 watt tube amp, still didn't need half the volume it would produce, and it was still a 130 watt amp.

I don't see the point...
Hmmm...I wonder what this button does...
#10
Quote by Paleo Pete
ding ding ding...we have a winner.

If you already have a 100 watt amp, I agree, WHY? I can probably name a dozen professional musicians who have toured with 100 watt amps for 30 years.

...much left out...



I don't see the point...


I get that a lot with people evaluating my setup from afar, too.

I've been using a 1500W power amp, first with the Delta ProA 2x12s, later with my current fEARful 15/6/1's. At one point I used a 100W Marshall stack, too, and I still have five 4x12s in storage.

Every one of those dozen professional musicians who have toured with 100W amps for 30 years will tell you that they don't expect those amps to produce clean, rich bottom end from any guitar that they use when those amps are driven to gigging volumes (120 dB+). The basic reason is that those 100W amps simply don't have the power needed, and the speakers in most guitar amps don't have the range. They get muddy bottom end and shrug their shoulders as if that's the best the last 50 years could do.

As soon as you *hear* a setup that can give you what even a standard 6-string guitar is capable of, things change. And trust me, a YouTube video ain't gonna get it to you.

There's also this. Modern players are looking for extended range (maybe the 30-year players ain't) and are increasingly dissatisfied with what 50-year-old gear designs can give them.
#11
I hear ya. A lot of contemporary musicians are also playing at lower volumes, and micing things into the PA rather than blowing out their eardrums at full power. Better bass response is why a lot of the long time touring guys still use 4x12 closed cabinets even though they aren't using the extreme volume levels any more. Not diming the amps also means better cleans and the bass is not so muddy.

If I want cleans, I like a lot of power, so I have the headroom. That was the idea for running a practice amp through a 130 watt tube amp. But the amp itself did such a good job of cleans I scrapped that idea before long and went back to just the amp, the Peavey MX is one of the cleanest amps I've ever played. At ear bleed volume it still plays clean. I have a Kustom 2x12 cabinet made in 1967 I run it through, I played it once auditioning with a metal band, their rhythm player was running a 100 watt Marshall and had it dimed, I was playing clean leads and still had volume to spare...he was floored...Right now I'd still be using my Super Reverb for low volume gigs but we don't have the floor space so I've started running through a Fender Pro Jr, and it actually has power to spare...it has 12 on the volume knob, I usually don't get it above 4. And that's a 15 watt amp. I put it on a tilt back stand I made from PVC so it's not pointed at my knees, it does a good job...
Hmmm...I wonder what this button does...
#12
Quote by Paleo Pete
I hear ya. A lot of contemporary musicians are also playing at lower volumes, and micing things into the PA rather than blowing out their eardrums at full power. Better bass response is why a lot of the long time touring guys still use 4x12 closed cabinets even though they aren't using the extreme volume levels any more. Not diming the amps also means better cleans and the bass is not so muddy.


We're seeing a lot of variations. We're still seeing "Olde School" setups where the PA is only for vocals and the instrument amps still have to carry over aggressive drummers.

We're seeing the cases you mention, where folks are miking cabinets and keeping stage volume low (there are still aggressive drummers to deal with), and/or where the actual amps being used are behind or under the stage.

And we're also seeing a growing number of setups where there are no active amps onstage at all, or where what amps there are exist only to provide a sense of "room" in outdoor situations where there's simply no return from walls. Those players are listening to monitor wedges or IEMs and the PA input is coming from Palmers or Two-Notes Torpedos or modelers.

Drummers are increasingly being dealt with either by surrounding them with baffles and miking the drums to be included in PA mix, and/or by using electronic drums and/or acoustics with triggers.

4x12s still show up, but are functionally decorative more than anything. Better bottom end response and treble dispersion can be had with smaller, lighter, wider range cabinets with different speaker complements and power configurations.

Long time touring guys often use whatever they grew up with. This is especially true if they're still playing the music they grew up with, or if the music they're playing isn't particularly demanding or requires a traditional sound.
#13
Thanks for all the feedback, guys! So here is the reason why. I play a lot of "doom, sludge, stoner rock" and we like to play LOUD. I mean like crazy loud. I really love the deltas and this cab for it and I get a super awesome tone. Previous cabs i built used swamp thangs, wizards, governors, etc all of which i liked too but I needed more low end, and literally more power. We go to some shows where the guitars dont need mic'd because the rigs are so damn loud(i mean they are mic;d just saying they could get away without it). Some have several slaves and a few full stacks for one rig. I just love the loudness paired with some awesome modulation and fuzz. Hence I want to make my 2x12 deltas scream! 100w is loud, but i must mention this is a Blackstar solid state, not valve. Pretty sweet little head but just doesnt push the deltas to their limit. Wanted to experiment with a power amp to push the wattage way up on these speakers. Again, thanks for all the replies. (i know im way late in the game about slaving :P)
#14
I think the guy from Tool used a bass setup and a guitar setup for his tone.

The way I hear it as a professional sound man - when these guys show up with those rigs, you get them to turn down to 2 or you boot them from the venue

Usually, all this is wasted when you get to stage and you want to have a decent mix which actually has bass guitar in it. I think most of these modern guys with 7 and 8 string guitars will eventually realize this once their backs give out
#15
How are those guys so loud then? sorry not being snide, just curious...it would be good to hear from a sound mans perspective. Some shows like Neurosis, Sleep, Ufomammut, etc...they are SOOO SOO loud like ear bleeding, needing ear plugs loud. They are louder than death metal shows. How do they get everything that loud and sounding good? What does the sound engineer do for them differently than other bands?
#16
Quote by ShadowlandsTX
How are those guys so loud then? sorry not being snide, just curious...it would be good to hear from a sound mans perspective. Some shows like Neurosis, Sleep, Ufomammut, etc...they are SOOO SOO loud like ear bleeding, needing ear plugs loud. They are louder than death metal shows. How do they get everything that loud and sounding good? What does the sound engineer do for them differently than other bands?


Run it all through a massive (and massively expensive) PA system.

The venue I most commonly attend has 111,600 watts on tap...just for the lawn seating. The FOH for the covered seating is generally dependent on the headliners but as an example one of the concerts that I have information for used a Midas XL8, two Midas PRO6 consoles, 12-over-12 main hangs of EV X-Line Xvls and Xsub line arrays, 16 XLC127DVX loudspeakers for out-fills, and Dynacord VL 262s for apron fills, all processed with EV N8000 processors running FIR-drive and IRIS-Net control software and about 65,000 watts of oomph!

All it takes is money...
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”
Charles Darwin
Last edited by Arby911 at May 20, 2016,
#17
Quote by ShadowlandsTX
How are those guys so loud then? sorry not being snide, just curious...it would be good to hear from a sound mans perspective. Some shows like Neurosis, Sleep, Ufomammut, etc...they are SOOO SOO loud like ear bleeding, needing ear plugs loud. They are louder than death metal shows. How do they get everything that loud and sounding good? What does the sound engineer do for them differently than other bands?



Eq cuts on the soundboard like you wouldn't believe
I took some shots from the board on a few of these big shows, you wouldn't believe how much of this is all filtered out. Unfortunately, it was on my old phone that drowned, but the eq that I remember from one of the local big club band shows (I guess 3,000 club) was something like this but with even deeper cut in the lows:

Last edited by diabolical at May 20, 2016,
#18
So for bands like this.....how the hell would you EQ this setup? Everything was mic'd and sounded ridiculously loud!

#19
Easy:


Seriously though, most of the times it is one speaker on one cabinet and usually one 4x12 is hooked up, while the rest are just for show. Each room sounds different, so it depends, some rooms need humongous notches (as pictured) and some narrow band cut for nasty frequency attenuation. It really depends...but offhand:

You cut everything under 80-120 hz on all but kick and bass, kicks are usually triggered nowadays, so that's even easier, you take those off at about 50hz. You listen to the guitars to make sure they don't have fizz or some nasty buzzes, you eq those out and kinda try to make space for each guitar in the midrange, maybe boosting one at certain frequencies, the other at other mid frequencies. You cut everything above 12khz on all guitars and bass, maybe even lower, about 10khz.
You take out some of the mud off the drums (low mid on that eq above) and guitars and bass and kinda let the vocal float on top. Depending on how much bleed you have from stage, you might lower some of the volume on the guitars and bass.

For the doomy/stoner stuff they probably let more of the sludge stay in the mix, what I've noticed that "trend" from a sound man's perspective is to let a lot of the crap that you clear out for better clarity STAY IN THE MIX. In other words, mix it as a 12 year old

Looking at the picture of that setup above, I am not seeing any mics so my guess would be that it is pretty much that kind of setup as in the picture ^

BTW - where is the drummer?
Last edited by diabolical at May 20, 2016,
#20
Ha! yeah I have seen that before. Thanks for the clarifications though! The picture is from a band called Sunn O))) and they dont have a drummer :P they are basically "drone" or "Noise" metal. This picture isnt from the show I saw but it was just like that and they did have everything mic'd which made me wonder wth was going on.

Question though, for different bands, what determines how loud you make them? Like can a band ask to be played louder than usual before their set, or is it a set rule depending on the style of music or band or venue rule?
#21
I have a suspicion Sunn o))) won't be treated anything like a normal band in terms of EQing (would be surprised if there is any difference between how each guitar channel is treated at the desk, the tonal variation and wall of sound is gonna come from what they have dialed into the amps I reckon). Would be very interested if anyone knows some details.

When I saw them live I wouldn't say they were excessively loud, ultimately it is still going to be limited by what the PA can push, but they do fill a wide frequency range so it feels very loud.
#22
Some of the shows that I did, say you have a huge mixer, I did one on a 96 channel mixer, you put in all your processing on the headliner first, they do sound check during the day where you get the mix as close to perfect as you can.
So in this case the headliners got about 24 channels, and some of these were my vocal fx and solo boost rides (you basically slave a second fader to increase or decrease solos, or to ride the reverb return for vocals, etc.).

So after the main band got most of the processing, we were left with very little in terms of processing power, so you couldn't really do much for the opening act, they got the minimal drum mic setup: one overhead instead of two, not much processing, the more worn out mics from the locker, etc. We had enough eq for all their channels, but gates were sparse, as were compressors, and one reverb only at this point. In this case they were lucky as we did a sound check on them as well, sometimes in these situations you'd just run a line check and you mix as they start playing.

So off the bat the opening band was playing through lesser gear, although going through the same mixer and PA system. You can't get them as loud as you don't have enough gates on some of this stuff, or you have a few subpar mics that you have to hide in the mix. Plus the main band usually requests to keep these bands at low volume, the lesser the volume, the lower the "excitement" or "danger factor", so many times even though the opener is better, they are perceived as the lesser band as they are turned down in the mix.

Dave Mustaine is notorious about that - all Megadeth concerts that I've been at, the bands that open for them are on "suck" setting on the mix. One time they even left that settings for two songs of Megadeth's set

Sound also starts to change once you fill up the venue as human bodies absorb sound, so you'll have to constantly make mix adjustments. On big shows you usually have a monitor mix engineer that is at the side of the stage and a "go-fer" tech that usually fixes problems during the gig, say a bad cable, bad pattery pack, etc.
#23
BTW, this is pretty much the best live sound setup that I've seen and heard:

Dual miked heads, one dynamic and one ribbon if not mistaken, blended to taste. It was massive.

I think they had one Marshall running each and the second was spare, although it is possible the rhythm guitarist had one for "clean" and one for distorted, not 100% sure but it was the best live show in terms as "close to CD as possible" sound.
#24
No drummer and that many amps/cabs running. I'll find my way to the exit just fine thank you. Sounds like a couple rich kids that had little talent (to find a whole band)said "fuck it I'm a rocker"

I use a 6x12 set up a lot these days, but really the 4x12 cab is only for a cool looking stand and the 2x12 cab is all that is running. I don't know how many times the sound guy has given me the evil eye only to find out I know my shit and make their work as easy as I can.
2002 PRS CE22
2013 G&L ASAT Deluxe
2009 Epiphone G-400 (SH-4)
Marshall JCM2000 DSL100
Krank 1980 Jr 20watt
Krank Rev 4x12 (eminence V12)
GFS Greenie/Digitech Bad Monkey
Morley Bad Horsie 2
MXR Smart Gate
Last edited by Robbgnarly at May 20, 2016,
#26
This was the layout for my 2x12s. The ports were "pipe" ports, nearly 4" in diameter and about that same amount deep. The tweeters were 1165N piezos, which required no crossover (they began picking up highs at around 1800Hz, could handle up to 400W each themselves and were less efficient than the Deltas so never overwhelmed them) and which don't appear to an amp as an impedance load. While things look pretty tightly packed here, everything was front-mounted and the back of the baffle was cleaner and there was more internal volume than what appears there would be...



There's actually a board separating the two 12" speakers *nearly* to the back of the cabinet, and since the cabinets were wired to be able to be used either mono or stereo, the board reduced crosstalk distortion between the two cones. Total internal volume was around 3.5 cubic feet.

The finished cabinets (this one isn't mine, but done to the same plan) were deep rather than tall, and mine were finished in LineX.



I generally used these one on either side of the drummer, and did that largely for coverage. At one point another guitar player was running through the left side of each cabinet (powered by his own amplifier, natch) and I was running through the right side of each cabinet. This allowed us both to hear ourselves and each other no matter where we were on the stage, allowed us each to use up to 800W of power as required and provided a very compact on-stage output solution where the PA wasn't miking instruments.

The ports tuned the Deltas down to 52Hz which, with the power available from the HD1500 power amp, reproduced clean fundamentals below the B string on a standard 7-string.

In terms of personal output, the head unit (a small rack) was much lighter than a 100W tube amp, and produced up to 1500W of power. The speakers were individually easier to maneuver than a single 4x12 and it was easier to find transport spaces to tuck them into and they produced a lot more (and much lower and cleaner) bottom end than any 4x12.
Last edited by dspellman at May 21, 2016,
#27
Quote by Robbgnarly
No drummer and that many amps/cabs running. I'll find my way to the exit just fine thank you. Sounds like a couple rich kids that had little talent (to find a whole band)said "fuck it I'm a rocker"


I haven't listened to these folks, but I've run bands that have had nine and ten members (four horns, two singers) and I've done gigs with two people (and a Korg Kronos and Korg PA3X), including myself, where percussion and bass and much more were coming off the 16-track sequencers in the keyboards and the vocals were enhanced by the TC Electronics-based vocal harmonizer built into them as well. Amazing what can be done...

I'm not a fan of insane amounts of volume, these days. I like loud well enough, but it's a pain in the butt to carry earplugs to *every* concert.
#28
Quote by doubtfulsalmon

so I stand by my first statement
2002 PRS CE22
2013 G&L ASAT Deluxe
2009 Epiphone G-400 (SH-4)
Marshall JCM2000 DSL100
Krank 1980 Jr 20watt
Krank Rev 4x12 (eminence V12)
GFS Greenie/Digitech Bad Monkey
Morley Bad Horsie 2
MXR Smart Gate
#29
Ha, I listened to that Sunn O))) video. I kept waiting for the song to actually start... and it never did.

Different strokes for different folks. Not my style, but, such is life.
Gear: Gibson Les Paul Studio, Gibson SG Special, Fender Stratocaster, Fender Telecaster, Fender Jazzmaster, Gretsch Pro Jet, Carvin C350, Epiphone ES-339 P90, Epiphone ES-335 Pro. Peavey 6505, Sovtek MIG-100, Vox AC30, Peavey XXX.