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.

Why don't guitar amps use 3-way speaker arrangements?

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by MrCoolGuy, Oct 29, 2020.

  1. Hpilotman

    Hpilotman Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    150
    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2020
    Location:
    Oklahoma
    Overdrive/distortion sounds horrible thru a tweeter. I use a floor monitor with the Tweeter disconnected and an Eminence guitar speaker installed and it works good for me.

    I guess if you want the lows get a baritone guitar.
     
  2. Audiowonderland

    Audiowonderland Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

    Age:
    49
    Posts:
    313
    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2018
    Location:
    Usa
    You don't want or need that for electric guitar... Go plug into an amp designed for acoustic guitars, that is essentially what you are asking for, and see for yourself. It is not a pleasant experience
     
  3. Audiowonderland

    Audiowonderland Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

    Age:
    49
    Posts:
    313
    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2018
    Location:
    Usa
    Guitar speakers are far full range.
     
    Blue Bill and Drew617 like this.
  4. jackal

    jackal Friend of Leo's Platinum Supporter

    Posts:
    2,231
    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2010
    Location:
    mojave desert
    I've tried a guitar through a stereo system both with the stereo amp+speakers, guitar amp through stereo speakers, stereo amp through guitar speakers etc. They all sounded very bad.
     
  5. mexicanyella

    mexicanyella Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    2,102
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2012
    Location:
    Troy, MO
    I found myself with a Fender Acoustasonic Jr. amp for awhile (Late 1990s version with spring reverb, no digital FX, two 8” drivers and a piezo tweeter).

    I discovered I wasn’t as interested in amplifying an acoustic guitar as I thought I’d be so I spent some time seeing if I could use it with electric guitar.

    What I found was that the tweeter reached way higher than I wanted to hear, and the drivers reached lower than I wanted to hear. Pretty consistent with just about everybody’s answers. If I unplugged the tweeter the amp could be adjusted to sound pretty nice, not too far off from something like a SS Princeton Chorus. But even then a look at my knob positions reinforced what I said above: the lows were rolled back quite a bit and the mids were pushed.

    One thing I did find useful with the tweeter was playing fingerstyle electric softly. It was like reading my fingerprints with my ears. A person could probably develop an interesting playing approach around that.
     
    Tim S and PhredE like this.
  6. gusfinley

    gusfinley Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,243
    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2014
    Location:
    SLC, UT
    My first real amp was a Laney EA65. The "EA" stood for "Electric Acoustic." It had an Acoustic Channel and an Electric Channel with distortion. It also had a switchable tweeter. This was always switched off when playing the distortion channel. It didn't sound too bad with it on, so the channel must have been filtered before hitting the power amp.

    This amp also had a line-in feature which would turn it into a slave amp. After I got my first Marshall Tube amp, I used this as a PA running a mixer into the Line-in. It worked pretty good!
     
    PhredE likes this.
  7. Jay Jernigan

    Jay Jernigan Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    714
    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2013
    Location:
    10-uh-C
    I'm not an expert on the subject, because I have never used one, but if I understand correctly there are guitar amp/speaker cabinets that are designed for modelling amps that utilize crossovers, mid drivers, tweeters, etc. I may be under informed.
    Most of the time, 12 inch speakers and a tube amp get me what I need but, occasionally I will mix a 10" and a 15", just for giggles.
    Mixing and matching guitar transducers is nothing new. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't.
     
    PhredE likes this.
  8. PhredE

    PhredE Tele-Holic

    Posts:
    934
    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2017
    Location:
    Suburban PDX, OR
    Yup.
    The Headrush FRFR is a good example (just one of many possible links):
    https://www.sweetwater.com/store/de...108-2000-watt-1x8-inch-powered-guitar-cabinet

    Powerful, flexible and cheap!
     
  9. arlum

    arlum Tele-Meister Platinum Supporter

    Age:
    65
    Posts:
    439
    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2018
    Location:
    O'Fallon, MO
    Guitar amplifiers are an extension of the electric guitar. They're not supposed to be high fidelity. They're supposed to work hand in hand with the electric guitar to produce quality tones.
     
  10. schmee

    schmee Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    12,735
    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2003
    Location:
    northwest
    Some guitar amps have 2 or 3 speakers. mainly acoustic amps. I have used a PA speaker before. It's kinda hifi jazzy tone, not bad for that maybe. Basically though, for electric guitar I like the non separated freq's. The speaker is part of the whole tone thing. Not intended to be "accurate", intended to sound a certain way.

    Also, back when PA systems were towers/columns and only had vocals in them, they were killer sounding. Like the Shure Vocalmaster thing. 4 x 12 vertical on each side etc. Granted that type of system wont be great for huge shows, but for club work, I've never heard anything better. There was a time period where CSN&Y, the Association, Mamas and Papas songs were in the mix, those systems were amazing for all that harmony.
    I hate most PA systems with horns and woofers. The horns must be high quality and not piezo to sound good at all.
     
  11. nickmsmith

    nickmsmith TDPRI Member

    Age:
    35
    Posts:
    45
    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2016
    Location:
    Indiana
    It's about where guitars sit in a mix. Right in the mids. Adding a sub would make it sound boomy, and running a tweeter makes it sound more shrill, when regular guitar speakers put out an adequate amount of high end.

    I have run a guitar amp head to a PA speaker with tweeter, it was absolutely awful.

    If you add a subwoofer or a tweeter, you'd have to do enough EQ changes to where you make them nearly useless.. to make it sound right in a mix. You can get boomy or shrill sounds from a regular guitar speaker without the extra hardware.
     
    W.L.Weller and MilwMark like this.
  12. muscmp

    muscmp Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,709
    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2008
    Location:
    california
    you want your guitar amp to sound like a guitar amp, not a hi fi or stereo amp. distorted vs clean.

    play music!
     
    MilwMark likes this.
  13. Ricky D.

    Ricky D. Doctor of Teleocity

    Age:
    69
    Posts:
    10,949
    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2006
    Location:
    Raleigh, North Carolina
    Hifi speakers divide the incoming power among the high, mid, and low frequency speakers, none of which are able to handle the full rated power of the speaker system. So you hit that 30 watt hifi speaker with 30 watts on one note, you'll blow it out. Be careful.

    The Gibson Titan back in th 60s was a high power amp they sold against the Fender Showman. There was a version with a 15 plus 2-10s that had a crossover. Good sounding amp.
     
    MrCoolGuy likes this.
  14. NTC

    NTC Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    219
    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2003
    I am a bass player and I agree about the squeaks and finger noise from a tweeter - yuck.
     
    5595bassman and VillainSean like this.
  15. mexicanyella

    mexicanyella Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    2,102
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2012
    Location:
    Troy, MO
    Also, some amp and/or FX noise is more prominent with a tweeter.
     
    PhredE likes this.
  16. W.L.Weller

    W.L.Weller Tele-Holic

    Posts:
    785
    Joined:
    May 20, 2014
    Location:
    Queens
    Plug straight into a PA channel then. Or plug yr effects chain in. Just because most people don't do it doesn't mean it can't work for you.

    Look up the Grateful Dead's Wall of Sound and the setup John Cipollina used with Quicksilver Messenger Service. And Steve Albini's been a full-range speaker user on stage for decades.
     
    MrCoolGuy likes this.
  17. Modman68

    Modman68 Tele-Holic

    Posts:
    857
    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2011
    Location:
    La mesa
    Beyond the problem that your distortion will now sound fizzy and your low end will now sound (ironically enough) less punchy and distinct, you will now be taking up sonic space that is getting used by the other members of your band.

    You will muddy up what is happening in the rhythm section and get in the way of your drummer’s cymbals and vocals.

    bigger is not always better.
     
    W.L.Weller and MilwMark like this.
  18. Paulie_Boy

    Paulie_Boy Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

    Age:
    62
    Posts:
    693
    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2019
    Location:
    Varies. (Witness Protection)
    My Line 6 Amplifi has an interesting interior:

    [​IMG]
     
    PhredE and MrCoolGuy like this.
  19. Frodebro

    Frodebro Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Age:
    51
    Posts:
    16,163
    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2012
    Location:
    Seattle
    Tom Scholz did exactly this with the Rockman amplifiers back in the late eighties. The cabs looked like regular 4x12s, but were actually three way speakers.

    Also, modelers work quite well through full frequency monitors.
     
    PhredE, MrCoolGuy and codamedia like this.
  20. NoTeleBob

    NoTeleBob Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    158
    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2020
    Location:
    Southwestern, USA
    I think the bottom line is that a guitar speaker (amp) is kind of like having a notch filter: It only delivers frequencies from ~80 to 5000 hz, discarding the rest. You don't want the rest.
     
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.