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Which amp for 2x Peavey 3620?

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I was lucky enough (over a couple of years) to find two Peavey 3620s for practically nothing. (65kgs, 2x18 and 2x10)

My question is: How powerful an Amp do I need, and how do I not blow anything up?

The cabs have two "full range" inputs, which I figure I could use to chain the two cabs in parallel (Amp -> cab 1 -> cab 2).

Since each cab is 400w (max) @ 4 Ohms, I would guess I need an amp providing at least 800w into 2 ohms? Not sure how the math works there...

That's if I connect them in parallel. Another option would be to find an amp with two channels and plug one cab into each.

Any suggestions for amps that would go with this? I would go with either Peavey power amps or crown, simply because I spent some time looking into their lineups and feel comfortable with them, but any recommendations are very welcome.

I was planning to get a pre-amp pedal (Sansamp / Darkglass DI?) and run it straight into a power amp - would that work?

Obviously, I'm responsible for my own mistakes, any advice here is very much appreciated!


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Hope you have roadies.

  As to amps these are rated 400W max which probably means the two 18's are rated at 200W each, that's incredibly low by modern standards and I suspect a sign that these were made in times when the coil formers and glues were less heat resistant than today. If these are the vintage items I suspect they are then treat them with respect and keep the power down. I'd maybe treat them as if they were 200W into 4ohms if longevity is important. They are likely to be pretty loud anyway. I'd be looking to keep the vintage look going and maybe match them up with one of the Peavey Mk111 or Mk1V amps which I think were 300W into 4 ohms. If you can find them they are usually dirt cheap and they are pretty reliable and very fixable if they do break. If not I'd be looking to get a stereo PA amp of about 2-300W into 4 ohms.

Having said that reports seem to be that the 10's sound good but the 18's are a lot woolly. Running them bi-amped would probably give you the best sound because you'd be able to balance the two better.. If you've got two of the speakers then there are some 4 channel amps around, Thomann do one in their own 'The Box' range.

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Thanks, that's very helpful.

I'll see what I can find power-ampwise.

Can I just Y-cable the pre-amp output to the two power inputs then? I've seen Y cables for sale, but that does not mean it works well...

Are there active splitters that work well for this?

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You could probably just use a Y cable to split the signal or something like this https://www.gear4music.com/PA-DJ-and-Lighting/Behringer-ULTRA-DI-DI20-Active-DI-Box/297

You'll probably need to do a bit of experimenting to get the best out of these, though you may just like the sound out of the box. It looks like there is just a 500Hz crossover built in so the lows going to the 18's and the highs going to the 10's, you could just go direct into both pairs of speakers by passing the crossover but beware of overloading the 10's. Some power amps like my Peavey 1600's have a crossover to a sub, I'd certainly try sub to the 18's and tops to the 10's if that is available, which will effectively mean you've shifted the crossover point to around 100 Hz. If you can borrow a proper crossover you could experiment with other crossover frequencies.

You could also try just mixing two entirely different tones to each speaker giving you something like the 'stereo' effect you can get with a Rickenbacker or the old bassists trick of feeding half their signal to a bass stack and half to a guitar amp.

The options are quite varied and it is up to you how much you want to experiment My only worry would be that these are old speakers and of unknown health, start with the volume right down and listen for signs of strain and you shouldn't go far wrong. Good luck and have fun :)


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