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Thread: Attenuators??

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    Banned! againstthewind's Avatar
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    Default Attenuators??

    Anyone here ever use/own one of these?? Hell if they do what they claim it would be great. MF offers a few, Gibson, Hot plate, Marshall etc....anyone play the different models?? I would be really thankfull to hear some opinions, 'cuz this would be a great investment for only 3hundy or so, I could crank the Fender and not destroy the ears and get great tone!! I'm really jacked up about getting one of these, so any and all input would be great. Thanks, Randy.

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    Baluchitherium sisca's Avatar
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    wouldnt that be a variac?
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    Banned! againstthewind's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sisca
    wouldnt that be a variac?

    Well, I don't know...that's why I'm asking. But you were a ton of help.....Thanks!

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    Good Enough nobozos's Avatar
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    An attenuator is plugged into your amp between the speaker out jack and the speaker cabinet. This is a "dummy load", which drops some of the applied voltage from the amp across it, so that the full voltage isn't dropped across the speaker cab itself, therefore reducing the overall volume.

    Using an attenuator is a trade off. You can get that nice warm power tube distortion you like at a reasonable volume, but it negatively impacts your tone.
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    Banned! againstthewind's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nobozos
    An attenuator is plugged into your amp between the speaker out jack and the speaker cabinet. This is a "dummy load", which drops some of the applied voltage from the amp across it, so that the full voltage isn't dropped across the speaker cab itself, therefore reducing the overall volume.

    Using an attenuator is a trade off. You can get that nice warm power tube distortion you like at a reasonable volume, but it negatively impacts your tone.

    I was worried if it would affect the tone. Thanks alot for the input!!

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    Romeo Delight
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    Try this website for info. Certain settings can affect tone!

    http://www.legendarytones.com/UltAtt1.htm

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    12.17.17 @ 02:50 PM
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    Dr. Z's "Airbrake" has gotten some outstanding word-of-mouth reviews. It doesn't even need a separate power supply. Apparently it doesn't "color" your natural tone. Check it out.

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    5150 A&Z Guitar Repair's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Majestic
    Dr. Z's "Airbrake" has gotten some outstanding word-of-mouth reviews. It doesn't even need a separate power supply. Apparently it doesn't "color" your natural tone. Check it out.
    I use a Dr. Z and I'm extremely impressed. I A/B'd against the others on the market and felt it was the better unit. The Weber Mass is also a nice attenuator as well.

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    I use a Weber Mass 100 with my 5150 head. I use it as a load box. The 5150 is plugged into the Weber. I then take a line off of the Weber and run that into my 30 watt Marshall solid state 1x12. I've got a Pod xt in the loop for effects only. This setup sounds great. I've got the post lead and rhythm both set on 6, because that seems to be the sweet spot on my amp, but volume-wise I'm playing at bedroom levels. The tone controls on the Weber work very well, as does the volume control. I can get great cranked 5150 tones at volume levels that you could talk over. I find the Weber to be terrific if you run it this way.

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    Romeo Delight
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    I use a Hotplate made by THD. The Gibson ones are just THD's with Gibson's name on them. I think the Hotplate is an essential piece of gear. It allows the Non-mv amps to really be turned up to where they sound good and you can set the volume at reasonable levels. The big 100 watt amps cannot be used in clubs or home without either a MV or an attenuator. With the Hotplate, you can really work the volume knob on your guitar. I just love mine.

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    5150 clawedmonet's Avatar
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    12.15.17 @ 07:25 AM
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    I use a Hotplate with my 5150 combo and it works really well. There are a lot of different settings to determine the degree of attenuation, so there are different impacts to tone. If it's just me, I'll use it at its highest level (most attenuation) and there is some impact to the tone. However, remember that someone said "volume IS tone." Therefore, any impact to volume - which is the essence of attenuators - will impact your tone. I compensate with the volume on the guitar or an EQ and it sounds fine.

    I would check the Fender forums and see which attenuators people there are using because different brands and rigs probably work better together.

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    Romeo Delight kevlar3000's Avatar
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    Really pleased with the Weber Mass, been useing one for 3 yrs with a bunch of old heads. I think they sound very natural. At high attenuation levels you will lose some treble response, much of that has to do with not pushing the speakers. If you are trying to turn 100 watts of output into 5 you will lose something, just like a Master Volume will. For price and features I think the MASS is really tough to beat. I am real picky about tone and this really fit the bill. I like it better than both the Hotplate ( still a very good unit) and Powerbrake, seems just a bit more natural to my ear.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Majestic
    Dr. Z's "Airbrake" has gotten some outstanding word-of-mouth reviews. It doesn't even need a separate power supply. Apparently it doesn't "color" your natural tone. Check it out.
    Hmm, well I think I'm going to check this out for myself. Where I'm currently living I really can't crank my 5150, so this might be a good way for me to go. I'll check it out.
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    palmer speaker sim. it dosent get any better then this right here. i love mine.

    http://www.palmergear.com/pdi03.shtml

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    Sinner's Swing! Rick S's Avatar
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    how do you use your palmer load box?

    with a power amp to cab like eddie?

    or direct to mixing board?

    or like an attenuater?
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