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whats the difference between a volume pedal and a hotplate attenuator?


LIAR-502

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i have a 30watt laney tube combo that sounds great up about half volume. i want to be able to use this amp in my room for practicing. my podxt just isn't doing it for me anymore and i love the sound of this amp but for practicing, at that volume its harsh and buzzy.

 

i've tried the amp using a volume pedal in the effects loop and i didn't like the sound i got. So whats the difference between a volume pedal and a hotplate? would a hotplate do a pretty good job?

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volume pedal in the FX loop just reduces the volume from the preamp to the power amp - (yes the one you've just turned up).
So the power amp is not being driven.

An attenuator goes after the power amp so the whole sound of the amp is captured and then lowered before the speaker.

(The debate rages on about how well this is actually acheived and how much speaker distortion plays a part in the sound, but that's the basics - the attenuator will sound far better.)

Given you've got a 30W amp you might want to try the Weber Load dump - only $50.

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I recently bought a Hotplate from Musicians Friend to use with my Mesa F-50. Given the price of used ones (around $225 - 250) and a new one at MF ($299), I went for the new. MF is good at price matcing. Search around on the web. I found a Hotplate for $269 and sent MF the link. They matched the price. Then I used a MF $25 off coupon, got the Hotplate for $244, no tax, free shipping. Another nice thing about MF, the 45 day return policy. If you don't like the Hotplate, send it back for a full refund. Now about the Hotplate. I love it. I have no complaints about tone sucking even at the lowest setting. You have to figue, at this level your not going to be giging, it works very well for practicing. You get a lot of tone/balls, clarity from your amp but at TV volume. Works great at the louder setting for practice and gigs. Try one. :)

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Originally posted by LIAR-502

i have a 30watt laney tube combo that sounds great up about half volume. i want to be able to use this amp in my room for practicing. my podxt just isn't doing it for me anymore and i love the sound of this amp but for practicing, at that volume its harsh and buzzy.


i've tried the amp using a volume pedal in the effects loop and i didn't like the sound i got. So whats the difference between a volume pedal and a hotplate? would a hotplate do a pretty good job?

Serious? Since a volume pedal goes in the loop,it is obviously before the power section. An attenuator,as you must know,goes after the power stage.

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It completely depends on the design of the amp in question.

A speaker load based attenuator like a hotplate, will work with the widest range of amps, and will attenuate the signal going to the speakers. Both the preamp and power amps can be driven hard, and you will get the tonal contributions from both sections.

A volume pedal style attenuator positioned in an FX loop can be effective for certain types of amplifier. Amps where a significant part of the voicing is derived from the pre-amp design (cascading gain designs etc), may well benefit from having the pre-amp tubes driven hard. The way Master Volume circuit has been designed or the way the negative feedback is determined may also have an impact on the success of this approach.

I've had excellent results running a Volume pedal in the loop of my Mesa F-50. YMMV :p

Big smiles,

Andy.

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