Powerbreak, Hotplate...is it good and which one?

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NOT!!!
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Powerbreak, Hotplate...is it good and which one?

#1 Post by NOT!!! » Sun May 01, 2005 10:08 am

Hi!


Well, I maybe wanna buy me a Power attenuator. Which one should I buy? Powerbreak or Hotplate?

Or maybe a totally diffrent one?


Well and what is even more important...are they worth the money? Or better said, do they do good enough what they have to do? I really can´t imagine that thing should improove my amp sound.



For all who need to know, I have a II C+ Combo and a Triaxis!

alienillusions
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#2 Post by alienillusions » Sun May 01, 2005 4:39 pm

I wouldn't buy one, mate, unless you happen to employ several guitar techs or have mountains of cash to spend on new amps.(see EVH for reference!). These power attenuators are designed to max out your amplifier beyond it's normal capabilities. It will age your amp(s) faster than booze drugs and cigarettes will age you.(!!) If you use these power attenuators, expect short amp life and lots of headaches. Don't drink, do drugs, or smoke.....Look at Keith Richards.... :D

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#3 Post by wireman24 » Sun May 01, 2005 8:19 pm

The THD hotplate will not shorten the life of your amp. It might shorten the life of the tubes because you are running them a little harder but that would happen even if you did not have the hotplate if you run at high volumes alot. I have had my hotplate for a long time and have had no problems. Van halen used a light dimmer switch like you would use in your house to attenuate his amps and that will hurt your amp after awhile. Because it is not matching the ohm's of your speaker cabinet and a bunch of other things. Don't worry about the Hotplate it's fine.

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#4 Post by Ffats » Sun May 01, 2005 10:08 pm

I wouldn't touch a powerbrake... The THD is a very high quality piece of equipment. Most definitely go with the Hotplate.

alienillusions
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#5 Post by alienillusions » Sun May 01, 2005 10:51 pm

wireman24 wrote:The THD hotplate will not shorten the life of your amp. It might shorten the life of the tubes because you are running them a little harder but that would happen even if you did not have the hotplate if you run at high volumes alot. I have had my hotplate for a long time and have had no problems. Van halen used a light dimmer switch like you would use in your house to attenuate his amps and that will hurt your amp after awhile. Because it is not matching the ohm's of your speaker cabinet and a bunch of other things. Don't worry about the Hotplate it's fine.
So you use a power attenuator constantly and don't have problems? I find that a little hard to believe. No disrespect.

Melodic Dreamer
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#6 Post by Melodic Dreamer » Sun May 01, 2005 11:56 pm

I always use my Hot-Plate. I never turn it off and I never have problems out of my amp.
What is it going to mess up anyway?? Like someone already said (It's the same thing as running your amp at a higher volume). Thats it!

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#7 Post by NOT!!! » Mon May 02, 2005 12:04 am

hey, thanks!

An what about the sound?

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#8 Post by bcgvh » Mon May 02, 2005 9:37 pm

Though I don't have a HotPLate, I have read numerous reviews and what not about them and all it does is allow you to control your volume by cranking your tube amp way up then using the Hotplate between the head and speakers to turn the volume back down. You have to obviously turn tube amps way up to get them to sound good and the THD just helps you get that good cranked sound while playing at lower volumes. I don't see how it could possibly hurt your amp as long as you match the ohms on your amp and hotplate. Maybe only shorten your tube life, which isn't too big of a deal. It's not like everything in your amp can't be fixed or replaced anyway. And EVH used a voltage regulator to plug his amp into to ultimately "choke" the thing, not a hotplate type of unit between the head and cab. I should probably get one of these things myself as volume is indeed an issue with my 5150 half stack, but I just haven't gotten around to it.........

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#9 Post by Melodic Dreamer » Mon May 02, 2005 11:45 pm

NOT!!! wrote:hey, thanks!

An what about the sound?
It's fine

fyrie
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#10 Post by fyrie » Tue May 03, 2005 5:57 pm

I've got an 8ohm hotplate on my Legacy 2x12. I can say that I prefer the sound by far with it than without it. I do have one gripe with it - without the treble and bass boost, it's too muddy, and with them it's too bright with too much bass. I find myself having to use different settings if I'm using the hot plate or not (at gig volume), so I don't think you get a 100% true cranked sound, but it's darn close. If I could return it and get my $$ back, I would keep it without a doubt.
Last edited by fyrie on Wed May 04, 2005 5:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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#11 Post by Tim L » Wed May 04, 2005 5:40 pm

I had a Hotplate for a while.. at first I liked it alot but after a short while I came to feel the thing just choked the tone out of the amps I use (Legacy 1/2 stack & a Fender Blues JR). The Hotplate is NOT transparent by any stretch! I found anything beyond (and including) "-8dB" of attenuation damn near unusable. At least that's my experience with it. "Your Mileage May Vary..."

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#12 Post by fyrie » Wed May 04, 2005 5:47 pm

Tim,

For what it's worth to the starter of the thread: I hear what you are saying, but I feel that running the legacy w/ the hot plate at -16db with the legacy cranked to 6 sounds better than running it without a hotplate with the legacy at 1 (which is pretty freaking loud). I agree that -8db is where it starts to really drain the tone.

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#13 Post by Tim L » Wed May 04, 2005 5:56 pm

fyrie wrote:... I feel that running the legacy w/ the hot plate at -16db with the legacy cranked to 6 sounds better than running it without a hotplate with the legacy at 1 (which is pretty freaking loud)...
I respectfuly disagree :wink:

fyrie, it's cool that you dig the Hotplate. Lottsa' people do... I'm just not one of them.

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#14 Post by TheMessiah » Sat May 07, 2005 3:47 am

The use of a hot plate will not hurt your amp at all.
Tubes will wear quicker and thats it.

The tone wont stay the same.
Because the signal to the speaker is being soaked by a resistor and that changes what the speaker has to respond to.
You are giving the speakers less signal so they arn't being driven as hard as normal - Therefore a different tone is inevitable. Other factors also slightly change to tone but they are too complex to explain without diagrams.

Hot plates are great for practice at home or small home recording studios who can't crank up a big stack due to neighbors.

EVH is an idiot and lucky that he didn't start a fire in every amp he owned if he really put a dimmer switch before the speakers. He would have overloaded the amp the second he turn the dimmer past half way. His unreliability problem is caused by his own stupidity and lack of knowledge - not Hot plates.

Any young dudes thinking about trying a dimmer switch as a cheap fix - DON'T. You'll end up with a blown amp, a fire or dead from electrocution from stuffing with what you don't understand.


Thanks
The Messiah
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#15 Post by bcgvh » Sat May 07, 2005 11:20 am

[quote="TheMessiah"]EVH is an idiot and lucky that he didn't start a fire in every amp he owned if he really put a dimmer switch before the speakers. He would have overloaded the amp the second he turn the dimmer past half way. His unreliability problem is caused by his own stupidity and lack of knowledge - not Hot plates.[/quote]

Eddie DID NOT place a dimmer switch before his SPEAKERS!!!!! He plugged the power cord of his AMP HEAD into a voltage regulator, which he used to lower the voltage going into his amp to around 90 volts.

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