VJH and speaker watts

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VJH and speaker watts

Postby sweetness » Mon Jul 10, 2006 2:57 pm

A newbie question here -- What is a safe amp wattage for using the Valve Junior Head? I'm looking at a 2x12 that is rated at 140 watts.

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Postby guitarslim101 » Mon Jul 10, 2006 4:43 pm

The wattage won't matter as much as the impedance (ohms). You typically want the impedance of your amp equal to the speaker cab, and since the Valve Junior head has speaker outputs for 4, 8, or 16 ohms, just about any cab will work for it. For the wattage portion, 140 watts will be pretty efficient for a 5 watt head and the speakers won't break up much, but it'll be plenty loud. Am I missing anything important, Ric?
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Postby ricochet » Mon Jul 10, 2006 6:38 pm

Got it well covered. The VJH is rated at 5W, but that's 5 clean watts. I figure it pumps out a total between 10-12W when it's cranked and nasty. Any speaker from about 20W on up is plenty safe.

I don't think you'll blow anything by using the wrong impedance, but it'll distort more. I've played my 4 ohm VJ combo through a 4x12 8 ohm cab. Sounded great.
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Postby sweetness » Tue Jul 11, 2006 1:27 am

Thanks for the answers, guys. So this is probably a dumb question, but....

What exactly does 120 watts in an amp give you, if you're using a 5W head? More volume? Fuller sound? Dynamic range? And what does a 4X12 give you that a 2x12 doesn't? And don't say 2 more speakers...

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Postby ricochet » Tue Jul 11, 2006 1:39 am

I think you're saying "amp" when you mean "cabinet" or "speaker." The amp is the VJH.

Having more wattage rating on the speaker simply means that the amp won't be able to smoke the speaker. With the 5W rating of the VJH, there aren't a lot of speakers you're likely to smoke. But I'd stick with 20W plus.

Often, higher rated speakers have a higher sensitivity rating, meaning they're louder, than lower powered speakers. Just the opposite of what is sometimes suggested. It's because higher power speakers typically have bigger magnets and voice coils. They're also heavier, which is the downside. I DON'T want lower powered speakers to get distortion from overdriven speaker cones, which some people do. I think that sounds like shite.

2 more speakers and a lot more weight are what you get with a 4x12 instead of a 2x12. If you have roadies, you don't care about weight. If you have tour trucks, you don't care about the bulk.
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Postby guitarslim101 » Tue Jul 11, 2006 3:06 am

4x12's are really only necessary if you plan on playing big venues and don't want to mic your amp. I got rid of mine because I was getting tired of having to play my amp with an attenuator and the damn thing weighed 100 pounds. Now I'm using a 2x10 and a 1x15 simultaneously and the tone is pretty much the same with much less volume and a lot more low end rumble.
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Postby stratman_27 » Tue Jul 11, 2006 10:13 am

The more speakers in a cabinent the more air will be moved with the same amount of power even though there is less power per speaker. For example my peavey classic 30 is 30 watts. It is plenty loud with the one 12 inch speaker in the combo but when I plug it into an extension cabinent like a 2- 12 or a 4- 12 it sounds like a 100 watt marshall because of the extra air I'm moving with the extra speakers.
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