15 watts at an outdoor gig -- close but no cigar

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by KC, Jul 20, 2019.

  1. KC

    KC Friend of Leo's

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    Played outside last night with my Bad Cat Cub III through a nice hefty cab with a Bad Cat V30 in it -- and almost got away with it -- till the end of the night, when the amp felt like it was out of gas as the master volume inched up. It sounded great up to that point, and will make a perfect club amp I think. I'll use the Black Cat 30 for outdoor stuff this summer, which is loud enough for anything, and heavy enough to make me search for an alternative.

    I have a 16-ohm Gold lying around that I could swap into the cabinet. Your thoughts on whether that would make it enough more efficient to keep up? Or another speaker that might? The Red Fang seems to be long gone. I like the way the V30 sounds with this amp but anything super-efficient in the Celestion family would do me, I think. I would much rather carry the head-and-cab combo to the kind of wilderness gigs we're doing than the 80-lb Black Cat.
     
  2. Paul G.

    Paul G. Friend of Leo's

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    Never in a million years. Put a mic on it.
     
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  3. Nick Fanis

    Nick Fanis Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    Don't you mic it?
     
  4. PhredE

    PhredE Tele-Meister

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    Two quick thoughts before dinner:
    1. Yeah, mic it. (First and best option IMO)
    2. Using a 16 ohm speaker? Wouldn't you tap a bit more power going with an 8ohm unit? And/or you could use an even more efficient speaker too (an efficient 8ohm unit might gain you quite a lot on the output side)
     
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  5. Milspec

    Milspec Friend of Leo's

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    Just tell the crowd to shut the F up next time.
     
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  6. Les H

    Les H Tele-Meister

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    To be somewhat contradictory and while I fully agree with mic'ing it, that doesn't always help the player on stage at an outdoor gig. Works for the audience yes. The quality of the mix coming through the monitors can be a little iffy and one step either side of it and you can lose it and sometimes not every one gets to have monitor for themselves.
     
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  7. strat a various

    strat a various Friend of Leo's

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    I've done quite a few outdoor gigs, and I discovered that the "great outdoors" has acoustics just like an indoor space, just with different distances and reflective tendencies. If there is a building nearby, or if the landscape goes uphill in front of you, or if there is a structure behind the stage, or if you are playing an acoustically designed amphitheatre, you may get away with a relatively small amp. If there aren't any reflective surfaces near you, or if they angle in the wrong direction, it may seem like even a big loud amp isn't enough.
    When I get an outdoor gig at a venue I've never played before, and the organizers can't provide an amp, I always come prepared for the scenario that I'll need a loud amp. Only other choice is mic the amp and try to get some guitar in the monitor.
     
  8. Dacious

    Dacious Poster Extraordinaire

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    Point your amp at you, tilt back slightly as a monitor so you can hear, mic in front so audience can hear.
     
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  9. Guitarteach

    Guitarteach Poster Extraordinaire

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    The right speaker can make a difference. I have ran my simulclass boogie in its 15w mode for most of the time unmiced in large marquees, off small outdoor stages and flatbeds and in large clubs as I like the compression and sweet top end breakup of the EL34s in 15w mode over the 75w mode.

    It has a huge and heavy EVM12 speaker which just seems three times louder than any other speaker at the same volume knob setting. I think it’s the 200w power handling that keeps it loud to the limit.

    Issue is... it’s bloody heavy.

    Worth trying a more efficient speaker though. A few extra dB will come as volume. But looking at the specs, the v30 and Gold are both 100 dB.

    I usually have my amp up on its flight case at midriff / chest height so I can monitor myself easily and adjust it You don’t get the echoes coming straight back when outside, so getting the beam toward you is the trick as you may be turned up too loud and not notice outside.
     
  10. charlie chitlin

    charlie chitlin Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    At an outdoor gig, your small amp IS your monitor. Put it on a stand or chair right behind you.
     
  11. bftfender

    bftfender Friend of Leo's

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    did a metal gig with this lil bugger,,never again..but the backline head was poo, said they were providing peavey valveking but M80 was there..yikes...had to use my friends behringer v amp set on british with gain up. Pushed 4x12 fine..not so much bottom end tho. But have to respect what it was able to do. REUNION & CONCERT 020 (2).JPG
     
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  12. slider313

    slider313 Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    I've done outdoor gigs with a brown Deluxe and a pretty hard hitting drummer!
     
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  13. strat a various

    strat a various Friend of Leo's

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    That only works up to a certain volume level. Then, if you need more, like say if you intend to move around and not stand shyly glued to one spot in front of your amp, you can try to get your guitar signal piped through the 1000 watt monitors in front of you, just like the big dogs do. Or in-ear monitors, which I hate, but they are taking over some big venues.
     
  14. 24 track

    24 track Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    I have the slant cab to match your 4X12
     
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  15. BobbyZ

    BobbyZ Doctor of Teleocity

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    A good sound system and more importantly a good person running it are key. My first outdoor gig was about 1982. I was 17 and didn't know anything about sound systems. Neither did the guy running the darn thing! I heard myself and the other guys fine but people in the crowd said they didn't hear me playing at all.
    Actually thinking about it now the sound guy was probably with the other bands, off in the bushes smoking pot. And who wanted to here a bunch of kids play anyway?
     
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  16. bftfender

    bftfender Friend of Leo's

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    i agree,,,we were hosting shows for awhile..i invested in 4 more wedges..hey more to set up..but that stage level was very nice..the drummer had his & we filled in the stage..so no matter where you are it sounded good..interesting..you don need as much volume if you can set right. Basically transfer our practice set up..to the stage. Mostly outside shows or bigger inside..But we def are all about perfect stage balance..then..push it to audience with PA..it works great.
     
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  17. KC

    KC Friend of Leo's

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    Just to clarify: the amp was miked & I was told it sounded fine out front. But I was on the same side of the stage with the other guitar player (never again!) and the volume was creeping up all night. After a while I started to lose my clean sound -- still plenty loud but loose & ratty. If we had a great sound guy & monitors where I could get a little back, I would have been fine. But I'm bringing the big amp next time.
     
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  18. richey88

    richey88 Friend of Leo's

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    Guitars have to be on either side of the kit. Have got away with my Pro Jr. IV at 3 outdoor gigs with no issues (were old and have a fantastic drummer no volume wars). How hard a hitter is your drummer?
     
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