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Wearing out a speaker? #2990757 05/22/19 08:52 PM
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dazzjazz Offline OP
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Hi,

I have a powered speaker that seems to have changed tone recently - my usual instruments all sound different (not as good) to what they used to.

This speaker has done a lot of gigs, but not an excessive amount. Do speakers wear out?

Regards

Darren


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Re: Wearing out a speaker? [Re: dazzjazz] #2990761 05/22/19 09:05 PM
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Yes they can. Or .... Caps can leak in the crossover. Or other components can drift or go bad. What seems to be changing .... Less crisp, muddier? I wouldn't think it's wore out but maybe the amp was clipping and the voice coil was damaged. Who knows without taking it apart and doing diagnostics.

Last edited by CEB; 05/22/19 09:07 PM.

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Re: Wearing out a speaker? [Re: CEB] #2990770 05/22/19 10:04 PM
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I had a JBL EON that fell out of my vehicle. Although the fall was not very far, the woofer's coil was slightly dislodged from the magnet gap. Of course it sounded bad, but I was able to get it back in place without too much trouble.

Otherwise, I haven't had any problems with my speakers over the ~50 years I've been playing music.

Gawd that sentence makes me sound really old. facepalm

Ummmm, let me tell you about riding my bicycle uphill... both ways... miles and miles to the drugstore in order to find a tester to check the tubes in my amp.

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Re: Wearing out a speaker? [Re: ITGITC?] #2990783 05/22/19 11:06 PM
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The Real MC Offline
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Powered speakers usually have a class D amplifier. They would wear out long before the speaker. Their operation is very dependent on reactive components that do not last forever.

Re: Wearing out a speaker? [Re: The Real MC] #2990794 05/23/19 12:28 AM
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Docbop Offline
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Speakers the paper will start losing it stiffness and get flabby sounding, but speakers can be reconed. Voice coils can overheat and start rubbing and recone can remedy that. Tweeters same heat issues and diaphragm needs to be replaced. Then as others said amps can develop issues again heat is a common cause for components to start changing their values.

But usually unless really driving stuff hard night after night it takes a long time before issues start.

Re: Wearing out a speaker? [Re: Docbop] #2990797 05/23/19 01:12 AM
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El Lobo Offline
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I had a similar question. It seems like my powered speakers have less power, that is, less volume. It may be that my hearing is less good, but lately I have to crank my old QSC K8's all the way and the keyboard all the way to get the volume loud enough to match the other (not loud) instruments. Sure it's amplified blues and rock, but it seems like the speakers used to not have to be cranked all the way and they were plenty loud enough, sometimes too loud. Not any more. Do good quality powered speakers get weaker over time?

Re: Wearing out a speaker? [Re: El Lobo] #2990822 05/23/19 08:57 AM
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Other than isolated cases, I believe powered speakers and amplifiers generally retain their characteristics over a long period of time. Last week, I fired up my father's old mono "hi-fi" rig (circa 1956) and it sounded like it always sounds -- warm and rich.


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Re: Wearing out a speaker? [Re: CEB] #2990823 05/23/19 09:06 AM
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Synthoid Offline
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Originally Posted By: CEB
Caps can leak in the crossover.


Paper towels can help. laugh



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Re: Wearing out a speaker? [Re: Synthoid] #2990828 05/23/19 10:07 AM
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I have a lead singer who had a crappy speaker on a pole that crackled and sparked ... for rent ... but thats a different story. Interesting thread ... curious.


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Re: Wearing out a speaker? [Re: dazzjazz] #2990830 05/23/19 10:19 AM
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Reezekeys Offline
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Originally Posted By: dazzjazz
Hi,

I have a powered speaker that seems to have changed tone recently - my usual instruments all sound different (not as good) to what they used to.

This speaker has done a lot of gigs, but not an excessive amount. Do speakers wear out?

Consider this next comment as said "half-jokingly" smile

Do you do a lot of loud gigs without hearing protection? I would make sure it's your speakers, not your hearing, that's changed!

I got my K8s soon after they were introduced, almost ten years ago. If their sound has changed, it's been too gradual for me to notice. I don't do loud blues or rock type gigs but some of the wedding bands I worked with in the past got brutally loud and my Ks never had an issue keeping up with them.

And, just a wild shot here – my Ks have two switches in the back that affect the EQ drastically – and these switches can easily change positions when I put on or remove my Tuki speaker covers! I check them every gig. If your speaker has anything similar you might want to check the settings. There is a "vocal boost" position on the original Ks that will turn any piano sound to shit if it's accidentally set there!

Re: Wearing out a speaker? [Re: Reezekeys] #2990895 05/23/19 02:11 PM
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El Lobo Offline
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Originally Posted By: Reezekeys
And, just a wild shot here – my Ks have two switches in the back that affect the EQ drastically – and these switches can easily change positions when I put on or remove my Tuki speaker covers! I check them every gig. If your speaker has anything similar you might want to check the settings. There is a "vocal boost" position on the original Ks that will turn any piano sound to shit if it's accidentally set there!
Yes, I always check the switches on my K8s. Moving them from car to venue, or putting Nord in gig bag on top of them in the trunk can easily change them. And one channel has line-mic switch. I'm in the habit of checking all the switches as I set up. Then checking again if something seems off in the sound.

Re: Wearing out a speaker? [Re: El Lobo] #2990970 05/23/19 08:55 PM
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Docbop Offline
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Originally Posted By: El Lobo
I had a similar question. It seems like my powered speakers have less power, that is, less volume. It may be that my hearing is less good, but lately I have to crank my old QSC K8's all the way and the keyboard all the way to get the volume loud enough to match the other (not loud) instruments. Sure it's amplified blues and rock, but it seems like the speakers used to not have to be cranked all the way and they were plenty loud enough, sometimes too loud. Not any more. Do good quality powered speakers get weaker over time?


Volume is about moving air and with just a 8" speaker you're not moving a lot of air. Increase the size of the speaker or use multiple speakers and you'll move more air. My guitar setup I tried a Raezers Edge 1x8" ported speaker cab, sounded okay, but not a lot of volume, I moved up to a 2x8" cab and not only more volume but more bottom end too. I like multiple small speakers like 8"s or 10"s they sound good and offer a lot of punch. Big speakers 12" and 15" need a lot of power to get them moving and can have a bit of lag for speaker to respond.

Re: Wearing out a speaker? [Re: Docbop] #2991065 05/24/19 01:27 PM
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My K8's have always been sufficient for volume. My question was not about how to get more volume but do powered speakers lose power/volume over time. The answer seems to be no, so that I am looking elsewhere for the answer to whether I've lost power/volume. The answer may be in the switches on the back of the speakers or on the keyboard or in cables. The problem may be intermittent which suggests something in the amplifier/electronics somewhere.

Re: Wearing out a speaker? [Re: El Lobo] #2991069 05/24/19 01:45 PM
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Has your rig changed at all? Regarding how much I have to turn up the volume, I found with my K10 on the line setting, volume 100% is not max volume it is capable of because the Kronos output isn't hot enough. I use a little line mixer in between to add a little gain. The Mic setting is plenty loud but has too much gain resulting in noise, plus I usually use that input for my vocal mic.


Dan

Acoustic/Electric stringed instruments ranging from 4 to 230 strings, hammered, picked, fingered, slapped, and plucked. Analog and Digital Electronic instruments, reeds, and throat/mouth.
Re: Wearing out a speaker? [Re: J. Dan] #2991103 05/24/19 05:27 PM
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El Lobo Offline
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Originally Posted By: J. Dan
Has your rig changed at all? Regarding how much I have to turn up the volume, I found with my K10 on the line setting, volume 100% is not max volume it is capable of because the Kronos output isn't hot enough. I use a little line mixer in between to add a little gain. The Mic setting is plenty loud but has too much gain resulting in noise, plus I usually use that input for my vocal mic.
I thought about this. Rig hasn't changed. Sometimes I put my wireless sax mic into one of the speakers for low volume small gigs but usually it goes to PA. I tried putting keyboard into both mic channels. I hear more noise but at a loud gig it's not noticeable. I'm now playing with the volume/gain/volume pedal settings on the keyboard. As I mentioned, seems like the problem was intermittent (oh joy oh rapture) and everything seems ok at the moment. I'll be paying close attention at this weekend's gigs.


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