1. Win a Broadcaster or one of 3 Teles! The annual Supporting Member Giveaway is on. To enter Click Here. To see all the prizes and full details Click Here. To view the thread about the giveaway Click Here.

Preamp, power and speaker breakup

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by Mark the Moose, Jan 17, 2020.

  1. Mark the Moose

    Mark the Moose Tele-Holic

    Age:
    45
    Posts:
    930
    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2018
    Location:
    Erie, CO
    I've been able to experiment with preamp vs power amp breakup, but I'm can't find any recordings that isolate speaker breakup. Some people seem to dig it, others not so much...but I can't seem to figure out what "it" is!
     
  2. printer2

    printer2 Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    6,940
    Joined:
    May 24, 2010
    Location:
    Canada
    Check out some modeling amp simulations online. I seem to remember (heck, maybe I dreamed it) coming across a site.
     
  3. schmee

    schmee Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    12,719
    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2003
    Location:
    northwest
    Speaker breakup needs a lot of volume, of course depending on the speaker. The cone goes into random shapes wildly producing inaccurate sound, ovalizing the voice coil maybe. The other type is "Float compression" where the cone stays reasonable shape and kind of floats sustained on the notes suspended by the magnetic force.
    Old Tweed bassmans with the P10R's would do that. But man, you are loud when it occurs. (re: Albert Collins)
    Speaker "good" distortion is very hard to get and control in a live situation, a fine line, unless volume is no problem.
    Amp size is easier.
    Preamp...hmmm.. maybe easier yet.
     
  4. Mexitele Blues

    Mexitele Blues Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    42
    Posts:
    1,253
    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2018
    Location:
    Westminster, CO
    My Gibsonette produces what I believe to be speaker breakup at about 3:00 and higher on the volume knob. It's rather unpleasant, sounding like fizz through a wrapping paper tube, with the tube length being modulated. Fortunately the amp sounds best between 9-1:00. I would think that similar old, low wattage alnico speakers would be easiest to break up if you want to try.
     
    Crashbelt likes this.
  5. printer2

    printer2 Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    6,940
    Joined:
    May 24, 2010
    Location:
    Canada
    Something like this looks fun.

     
  6. arlum

    arlum Tele-Meister Platinum Supporter

    Age:
    65
    Posts:
    436
    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2018
    Location:
    O'Fallon, MO
    Listen to a cranked Vox AC 30 into a pair of 15 watt Celestion Alnico Blues. This amp with these speakers taught me how much speaker breakup can play a roll in an amplifiers tone.
     
  7. trxx

    trxx Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    42
    Posts:
    1,563
    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2019
    Location:
    Between reality and imagination
    I have a Weber that sounded glorious with a DSL50 before I 'broke it up' too much. :p It's going to need a recone.
     
  8. 1300 E Valencia

    1300 E Valencia Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    2,685
    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2010
    Location:
    Fullerton CA
    First, as arlum has pointed out above, do not let your life pass by without playing an AC-30 with AlNiCo Blues. It is a religious experience.

    The short answer is, if you want *less* speaker breakup, get a speaker with a much higher power rating than the amp. Generally, you'd want a speaker with twice the capacity of the amp, i.e., a 100 watt speaker for a 50 watt amp.

    In the same amp, a 300 watt speaker should be cleaner. Ideally, any distortion would come from turning up the amp, with little, if any, added by the speaker. Whether this sounds good is a different question.

    Even then, most speakers for guitar as designed with breakup, distortion and color built in. Even that 300 watt EVM 12L. It's designed for guitar and its narrow range of frequencies, not hi-fi reproduction.
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2020
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.