#1
I'll be ordering a Carvin Legacy soon and since there no master volume I hear its good to get an attenuator. I was looking on Guitarcenter.com and saw a Hot Plate and Power Brake which seemed to be the two popular ones. But they cost $300-$500 which seems crazy to me....Anyways I also found this and wanted to know if its the same thing and if it will work just as well to keep my sound quailty while lower the volume.....

http://www.guitarcenter.com/A-Designs-ATTY-Volume-Attenuator-189900-i1125440.gc
#2
The Legacy probably does have a master volume, its just labeled as something like gain instead of voulme. I might be completely wrong though.

For an attenuator, look at Weber attenuators. They are more affordable and suck much less tone than the resistort based hot plate ones at common stores.
#3
THD Hotplate.
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#4
attenuators all suck tone to an extent. some are horrible, some are acceptable.

THD Hotplates are nice, but they're really expensive. I have a weber minimass that works well, but it sucks quite a bit of tone. they both have a treble boost(?) switch, but they're quite... harsh.


and for people recommending webers or THDs, no offense but i'm doubting half of the people never played them before.
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#5
Quote by ECistheBest
attenuators all suck tone to an extent. some are horrible, some are acceptable.

THD Hotplates are nice, but they're really expensive. I have a weber minimass that works well, but it sucks quite a bit of tone. they both have a treble boost(?) switch, but they're quite... harsh.


and for people recommending webers or THDs, no offense but i'm doubting half of the people never played them before.

Caught me red handed. I should have mentioned that I have heard good things about weber but I forgot. My bad TS.
#6
I bought a "TubeCube" from this guy, "vspeeds," on Ebay who's made his own attenuator, and sells them online (search "attenuator" or "TubeCube" on Ebay). He has one for only $95 in the "old" housing (expanded metal), and the one I bought was the new "Basic80," 80-Watt attenuator for $139 in the "new" housing (aluminum case). Both are the same—just different housings. It has a small selector switch on it for impedence, and one big attenuator knob (no tone controls). You can select either 4Ω, 8Ω, 12Ω, or 16Ω.

It's about the size of a very thick pedal and actually looks pretty cool. He says in his attenuator FAQ that he uses, "an audiophile-quality device that is both resistive and reactive combined . . . exactly as a speaker is. Said another way, this attenuator is not just a big resistor ladder network like a few of them on the market are."

His attenuator FAQ is very good, answers a lot of questions, and seems to illustrate that he knows what he's doing technically. Not sure EXACTLY what he means by, "both resistive and reactive combined," but if you asked him, I'm sure he would explain it in more detail. He's very open about his design, and is very communicative via e-mail. Plus, he ships SUPER-f*cking fast! A solid Ebay seller, and a decent attenuator for the money.

I also didn't want to spend that much money on an attenuator, because I knew if I didn't like the tone-suck, I wouldn't use it, and it would just gather dust. Like all attenuators, I assume, the more you turn it "up" (or "down," depending on how you view it), the more tone you lose. Don't know if you lose more or less tone than a PowerBrake, HotPlate, or a Weber, since I've never heard any of those.

Oh yeah, this guy has 317 customer feedback replies (as of 01/28/08), a 100% positive Ebay rating, and up to $2,000 PayPal Buyer Protection coverage. In other words, he's honest!

[Edit: Finally found an HC review of a TubeCube. One guy loved it. One guy hated it. The guy that hated claimed to have compared it with a THD HotPlate, and said the HotPlate sounded a lot more "transparent" and less "colored" at low volumes, but also addded, that at high amounts of attenuation, the HotPlate sucked high-frequency tone as well.]
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Last edited by LEVEL4 at Jan 29, 2008,
#7
Quote by ECistheBest
attenuators all suck tone to an extent. some are horrible, some are acceptable.

THD Hotplates are nice, but they're really expensive. I have a weber minimass that works well, but it sucks quite a bit of tone. they both have a treble boost(?) switch, but they're quite... harsh.


and for people recommending webers or THDs, no offense but i'm doubting half of the people never played them before.
EC: Weren't you at one point going to have BOTH a THD HotPlate and the Weber MiniMass to A/B? What did you find? Does one sound better than the other? Can you tell us about any differences between the two?
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#9
Quote by macaroni
The build quality and graphics look very pro on that unit. And the price sure is right. Apparently it's a passive (resistive) attenuator. Too bad they seem to only make a 15-Watt and a 50-Watt version.
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#10
Quote by LEVEL4
The build quality and graphics look very pro on that unit. And the price sure is right. Apparently it's a passive (resistive) attenuator. Too bad they seem to only make a 15-Watt and a 50-Watt version.


i think there's a 100w version too, not sure though.
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#11
i couldn't use both on the same amp, since i don't have $400 just to buy another attenuator, but the hot plate wasn't that bad (like everyone bashes in this forum). The noise reducing thing iono if that was working, since it was pretty quiet to start with. The tone of course changed, but they got some okay treble compensation thing that add treble. THD and Weber are both good, but haha. weber's like 1/4 the price.
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#12
Thanks, EC. I'm just dying to know how my TubeCube rates against the THD and the Weber. Do you think the THD sounded noticably better than the Weber, or were they both about the same?
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#13
they were like the same... nothing to hype over either. but weber has the cost advantage.
Call me "Shot".

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Custom Hand-wired Amplifiers and Effect Pedals.

Est. 2007


Source to everything I say about Guitars, Pedals, and Amplifiers: I make them.


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#14
My only gripe with the THD is that I've got a few amps with varying ohms, and some of them aren't changeable, and the THD's come in one ohmage for a high price, where the Minimasses have multiple ohms settings, with a better DI section, and about the same tone quality.
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#15
Quote by Osiris77
Anyways I also found this and wanted to know if its the same thing and if it will work just as well to keep my sound quailty while lower the volume . . .
Sorry, forgot to answer the TS' original question . . . the answer is: NO! That is a simple remote volume control. It doesn't "soak" any of your amp's Watts. It's not an attenuator. ANYTHING promoted as an "attenuator" for a guitar amp on Ebay for like $20-$40 is also NOT an attenuator—they're simply volume controls.

Quote by ECistheBest
they were like the same... nothing to hype over either. but weber has the cost advantage.
Thanks, EC! That's all I needed to hear! If that's true, then there really isn't much appreciable difference between the "speaker motor" design and the "resistive" design. If that's the case, then my TubeCube likely sounds about the same as your Weber.
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Last edited by LEVEL4 at Jan 29, 2008,
#16
Ok thanks for all the replies but since the 100watt version of the webber is still $225 I might aswell just buy a used hot plate. Anways what about using a volume pedal I could crank the channel volume and keep the volume pedal really low. I was reading reviews on this and it said it gave no tone loss by lowering the volume on the pedal would this idea work?

http://www.guitarcenter.com/Dunlop-GCB-80-High-Gain-Volume-Pedal-151003-i1124399.gc
#18
Has anyone tried the Dr. Z Airbrake? I don't think I've ever seen it mentioned here on UG. It's designed by Ken Fischer (Trainwreck). The price isn't as bad as I thought: a bit over $300.

http://www.drzamps.com/airbrake.html
Last edited by mr_hankey at Jan 29, 2008,
#19
Quote by Osiris77
Ok thanks for all the replies but since the 100watt version of the webber is still $225 I might aswell just buy a used hot plate. Anways what about using a volume pedal I could crank the channel volume and keep the volume pedal really low. I was reading reviews on this and it said it gave no tone loss by lowering the volume on the pedal would this idea work?

http://www.guitarcenter.com/Dunlop-GCB-80-High-Gain-Volume-Pedal-151003-i1124399.gc

I've never seen any volume pedal yet that doesn't roll off punch & dynamics, but what the hell. If it's at Guitar Center, then you should be able to try one out.
A Hot Plate is a great piece of gear to have. They do suck a fair amount of dynamics & response, as does every attenuator I've tried, but the degree varies from amp to amp, & this loss of tone is not ALWAYS bad, since it does tend to smooth out the tone & make it a bit creamier & liquid sounding, esp if your amp has real brilliant highs & mids. One really cool thing w/ the Hot Plates is that you can set it to "load", & then use the line out feature on the Hot Plate to run your guitar signal (line level) into another power amp, or into the effects return jack of another amp's loop (this is called re-amping). That way, your main amp is really just acting as a large pre-amp, & you get most of its tone (w/ virtually zero tone loss) coming out of the power amp (the separate power amp drives your speaker cab). This is one of the best ways to "attenuate", but I think I'm the only one on UG that does it. It costs a bit, but the sound is worth it, & the Hot Plate & power amp should last a lifetime. You can even use an old home stereo receiver as a power amp (you just have to make your own speaker cable).
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#20
The A-Designs ATTY isn't designed to handle a powered signal and will probably fail if you run a powered signal to it.
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