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Connect amp speaker to Axe

TK78

New Member
Hi,

got an FxII XL+, and just bought a Marshall DSLCCW (same as DSL5C) tube amp for small gigs and jams. 5 Watt combo. It got an effect loop, and a 10" Celestion speaker, which is not hardwired, but plugged in with a standard 1/4" cable.

I understand that standard is to connect the Axe with Effect in, but then I run through the Marshall power amp (which is a good one...:)) ). Just wonder if I could just connect the speaker alone with the Axe and then run different amp emulations through it. Would that work? Would I need to connect any external pre-amp in between?

Thanks for your advice,
Thomas
 

aziz

Power User
To avoid confusion, I'll just say "no". Axe is a pre amp. Speakers need a power amp to make sound.

(Here comes the confusion: line output has enough power to make a tiny tiny bit of sound, headphone out has more power.)
 

Paperjace

Experienced
You need a power amp between the Axe Fx and the speaker otherwise it won't work or it'll be just whisper quiet.

Also, that's not just a regular old 1/4" instrument cable. Speaker cables are usually more insulated since there's a current running through it.

If you want a poweramp that doesn't color your tone, consider getting a solid state power amp. The Matrix GT series is popular and tried and true. I love mine.
 

Stillbruch

Experienced
Also, that's not just a regular old 1/4" instrument cable. Speaker cables are usually more insulated since there's a current running through it.
Speaker cables also use different wires and are wired slightly differently. Avoid using instrument cables as speaker cables.
 

Rex

Legend!
Speaker cables are usually more insulated since there's a current running through it.
Almost. :)

Speaker wires use heavier-gauge wire because speakers need a lot more current than line-level or guitar signals need.

Also, speaker wires aren’t shielded, because speaker signals are robust enough that shielding isn’t needed.
 

mr_fender

Axe-Master
Yeah instrument cables are designed for low voltage and very low power signals. They have very small wires inside and cannot safely handle the current a high power amplifier can feed to a speaker. You can actually melt an instrument cable if the amp is powerful enough. It's one of the reasons many people prefer Speakon connectors instead of 1/4" phone connectors for speaker cabinets. The different connectors makes them easy to tell apart on a dark stage.

Another key difference is shielding against interference. Speaker cables are usually not shielded since any ambient interference would be very low power compared to the much higher power signal driving the speaker(s). Instrument cables on the other hand are always shielded since they carry very low power signals that can much more easily get degraded by ambient EMI. While using a speaker cable in place of an instrument cable would be safe, it would likely be very noisy due to the lack of shielding.
 

Stillbruch

Experienced
Since we already are a little bit off topic here. On an instrument cable with a TS-plug, the wire is soldered to the tip and the shielding is soldered to the sleeve. On a speaker cable, tip and sleeve each are soldered to a separate wire – no shielding, though.
 
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