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Thread: What is a 'drum amplifier' ???

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    What is a 'drum amplifier' ???

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    Cross posting from the gear forum, because maybe it's more applicable here:

    I need a question answered, is has several parts. But it's been driving me crazy for a few years now. And I can't post links because I'm new... so I'll improvise.

    I own this device: FISHMAN LOUDBOX ARTIST SERIES AMPLIFIER

    Can this device be used as a digital e-drum amplifier? What distinguishes this device from devices that are made to amplify digital drums such as these: *ROLAND HOME PAGE WITH PERCUSSION AMPLIFIERS* ?

    I've been told that 'keyboard amplifier's are similar to digital drum amplifiers, and so can be used-- Is this true? I've also been told that amplifiers can be irreversibly damaged by running the wrong instrument through them, even at moderate volumes-- if true, what is the mechanism of this damage?

    What properties should I look for in other devices (e.g. bookshelf speakers / powered monitors / headphones) to ensure that they are able to reproduce digital drums without loss of fidelity or range?

    Lastly, might there be a better approach for my application? I live in a 800sqft manhattan apartment, and would like the ability to jam at a moderate volume with some musician friends and colleagues.

    Finally, I recently invested in a tube headphone amplifier and was impressed with the improvement in experience. (I hesitate to say improvement in quality bc I understand that it's a contentious issue in the community) What kind of gear kit would I need to tube-amplify e-drums to powered monitors in my living room (some examples with links)?

    Thanks guys, even just a little clarification on this issue would be much appreciated.

    Thanks!

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    I suppose the impulsive nature of drum sounds might stress some amps, but I suspect it's more a matter of what sounds right. Keyboard amps are generally designed to translate the sound accurately, which is compatible with how you'd want to amplify electronic drums. Guitar amps are generally designed to impart tone. An acoustic guitar amp might be okay tonally, though it might be limited in volume and/or bass response.

    Maybe you should look into a headphone amp with enough outputs for everybody you jam with. Plug everything into a mixer and balance as desired. A mixer that could generate a couple of monitor mixes would let you send different mixes to different players.

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    No, it should not damage anything. Like plugging a bass into a guitar amp? The amplifier is NOT going to break.

    What is a drum amp? You got me. I use a P.A. system. Same that the Keyboard use. Consisting of at least, a mixer, power section, and speakers.

    Mackie makes a nice mixer board. Probably want 8-16 channels for drums. Depends on how elaborate you go. 16 channel boards are $100.

    Crown makes a solid powered amplifier. Figure stereo left right, solid state and 300-1400 watts of power at 8 ohms. Crest is NOT Crown.

    2 JBL speaker cabinets, want them 2-3 way design. 15-18" woofer and a Horn. At leat the watt rating of the amp at the ohm .

    I am not seeing a benefit to using a tube amplifier for this app. E drums could be a 2 channel operation too, the 16 channels might not be needed.

    Where tubes would color effectively is preamping the device with a tube preamp.

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    Bouldersoundguy has the best idea if you ask me. In a small space that's not likely sound proof enough to raise any real volumes to a level you can enjoy.......just plug everyone into a mixer (either directly or from their amp if applicable) and send the output to a headphone amp with 4 variable outs (or as many as you need). If you need vocals......run the mics into the mixer as well........and the only thing anyone outside your apartment will hear is people singing. That's the beauty of electronic drums IMO.

    I have a DP-24 that I no longer use for recording but it does make a decent mixer with some effects and EQ. It only has a single headphone out but I run that into a passive 4 channel splitter with volume control. We have an older Roland drum set as well. Great for those of us who don't have rehearsal space all the time.
    Just A Song Writer..........

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    Quote Originally Posted by FunkiestDuck View Post
    Can this device be used as a digital e-drum amplifier?
    Yes. Whether it will sound good is another question, but there's a lot of knobs on that thing, so...

    I've also been told that amplifiers can be irreversibly damaged by running the wrong instrument through them
    Bullshit. If you try to push too much power through a speaker - especially if it's severely clipped into square waves - the speaker might be damaged. Unless you're doing something crazy like plugging the speaker output of another high powered amplifier into the input of your amp, you can't hurt the amp itself.

    What properties should I look for in other devices (e.g. bookshelf speakers / powered monitors / headphones) to ensure that they are able to reproduce digital drums without loss of fidelity or range?
    Flat response, high headroom.

    Lastly, might there be a better approach for my application? I live in a 800sqft manhattan apartment, and would like the ability to jam at a moderate volume with some musician friends and colleagues.
    Headphones is a great idea. A decent powered PA speaker would probably be better than the amp you've got. You'll probably be fine as is unless you're trying to compete with cranked stacks or actually sound exactly like a live acoustic set.

    What kind of gear kit would I need to tube-amplify e-drums to powered monitors in my living room (some examples with links)?
    Just run your edrums through that headphone amp and the headphone out to your monitors. You'll have to watch levels, but a typical headphone output isn't all that much different from a line level output and certainly won't hurt anything in the attempt.

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