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Speakon Cable Question.


OriginsOfSound

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Hey guys.

 

I just purchased a Gallien-Krueger 700 RB-I head and an Ampeg SVT 410 cabinet. Along with this I got some cool goodies, including an Ampeg Speakon Cabinet.

 

The problem is that while I was browsing though my GK's owners manual, it has a warning that says not to use a Speakon labeled "Bridge Mode" or it may damage my amp. So, of course, after I've already played through it a little, I take a look at my Ampeg Speakon and sure enough, it says "Mono Bridged" on the side of it.

 

This may be a silly question, and I'm pretty sure I already know the answer, but are those two terms the same thing?

 

Thanks a lot.

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Yes. Your speakon needs to be wired 1+/1- at both ends. A bridged speakon is wired 1+/2+ at the amp end and 1+/1- at the cab end; using such a speakon with your GK would cause the low and high amp outs to be pushing voltage at each other, which could be very messy.

 

Alex

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I would definitely bring that up at the store for which you bought it from.

 

Grats on your new set up!

"Some people are like "slinkies". They're not really good for anything;

but they still bring a smile to your face when you push them down a

flight of stairs."

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Whoa! That's some scary information!

 

You mean there are different speakon cables for bridged and not bridged?

 

Sometimes I run my amp in stereo and sometimes I run it bridged mono. There is a switch on the back of the amp for this. There are also three speaker outputs....left, right, and bridged.

 

I use the same speakon cables all the time, I just use the switch and connect the cable to the appropriate output.

 

Should I be using a different cable?

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I think it depends on the amp. But with typical stereo power amps, there are two speakon outs, one for left/bridged and one for right. If you connect a 1+/1- lead to the left or right you get just that channel on its own. If you switch the amp to briged and connect a 1+/2+ lead to the left you get the whole bridged output.

 

If you plug a 1+/1- lead into the left when bridged I'd expect you to just get the non-bridged output from the left channel. My logic is thus: 1+=+V; 1-=0; 2+=-V. Therefore, with the 1+/2+ lead the voltage the cabs sees is 2V - i.e. bridged which is double the normal voltage; whilst with the 1+/1- lead the voltage the cab sees is 1V despite the amp being switched to bridged mode.

 

However, maybe some amps reconfigure their outputs.

 

The risk with GK amps is that 1+/1- are the full-range power amp outs whilst 2+/2- are the HF power amp outs. If you use a bridged cable the higher voltage of the 1+ output will be trying to drive the power through the cab and back into the lower voltage (but still positive voltage) 2+ out. Nasty.

 

What this doesn't explain is why my skinny leads with non-Neutrik speakons work fine, but my fat leads with real speakons don't work at all. Baffling!

 

Alex

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