speaker fuse protection

Discussion in 'Mixing & Song Critique' started by taxman, Sep 28, 2006.

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  1. taxman

    taxman Active Member

    Sep 22, 2006
    Someone suggested I put fuses in the speaker cable to avoid blowing the tweeters, especiallly as I am new to DAW. I am using NS-10Ms with an 80 watt Rotel stereo amp, and Mbox2. Does anyone know if this is necessary, and if so, what rating fuses to use?
  2. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Member

    Sep 26, 2005
    Fuses are not necessary unless you are a moron. Of course many people are. Generally, speakers are blown from amplifiers that cannot produce enough power. When the lower powered amplifier clips, they produce all sorts of higher harmonic distortions frequencies which will frequently toast a tweeter. So having a large amplifier with a lot of power into a smaller speaker rated at a much lower power level will almost ensure the fact that unless you turn things up to ear splitting levels, you will rarely blow a tweeter. Unfortunately getting a properly rated fuse can also have a bad effect since they produce a higher resistance load. Some speaker manufacturers actually used to use lightbulbs! And if you are talking about an inexpensive pair of NS10's, the point is almost moot?

    I've only blown a few........TWEETERS that is!
    Ms. Remy Ann David
  3. Kev

    Kev Well-Known Member

    Nov 13, 2001
    Fuses, generally, are not going to save the tweeter
    they can be a safety for the woofer
    ... this goes for lightbulbs too.
    it's a continuous energy thing and the tweeter can blow instantaneously

    something like a POLYSwitch is better for the tweeter protection.

    both of these can only begin to help ... after trouble has arrived
    and so it is much better to solve the problem before trouble hits

    even fancy electronic systems aren't as good as the human ear and a good operator.
    there probably isn't a single full proof protection method but every little bit can make things safer
  4. taxman

    taxman Active Member

    Sep 22, 2006
    don't think I'm a moron, and would like to keep things simple, so I will skip the fuses
  5. JoeH

    JoeH Well-Known Member

    Jun 22, 2004
    Philadelphia, PA/ Greenville, DE
    Home Page:
    Power amps don't kill, clipped square waves do!

    Remy's right; fuses aren't nec. the answer, most transients are too fast anyway. When needed, I prefer lamps as power limiters - usually on woofers. I have an old pair of Community PA speakers with a lamp across the woofers - never lost one in 10 yrs of use. Not sure I'd want one on my studio monitors, though...

    As odd as it sounds, a higher wattage power amp that wont clip is safer than a cheaper, underpowered amp that will clip & toast yer tweeters.
  6. Thomas W. Bethel

    Thomas W. Bethel Distinguished Member

    Dec 12, 2001
    Oberlin, OH
    Home Page:
    My experience with fuses is

    They don't blow when they should and they do blow when they shouldn't.

    When I worked at the local college we had a problem with speakers blowing in the classrooms. We went the fuse route to start with but the speakers were Advents and we were using modified Dynaco Amplifiers. The students (and some faculty) members would turn up the amplifier way too loud and then drop a needle on the turntable or press play on the CD player and the speaker would blow, So we started using fuses but the problem with fuses is once you blow the fuse you have to replace it and these fuses were behind the speakers which meant taking them off the wall and replacing the fuse and this sometimes had to be done between classes. So we went with an electronic fuse that was installed between the speaker and the amplifier and would turn off if hit with a large signal but then would self heal and go back on about a minute later. It solved a lot of problems and it was less costly to buy the electronic fuses than to constantly replace the speakers. FWIW

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