No matter whether you play rock, metal, or Jazz, you must use an amp to let your guitar sound reach more and more people. Most people think that amps are only for electric guitars, but only those who play know that you can use amps even on Semi Acoustic guitars. However, as a guitarist, what confuses us the most is the input of the guitar amp. You must have at least once thought about why do guitar amps have two inputs.
In short, a guitar amp uses two or more inputs to allow you to connect various audio sources easily. Various audio sources have different inputs. Some use high impedance inputs, and some have compatibility with low impedance inputs. And this is why a guitar amp uses both high and low impedance input to assist you in playing with ease.
Now, if you are willing to know more about an amp having multiple inputs, we have a deal for you. Below, we will help you know in detail why exactly a guitar amp comes up with various inputs and how they will benefit you while performing.
What Is An Input On A Guitar Amp?
In simple words, a guitar amp input is nothing but a 1/4 jack that receives electromagnetic signals from your instruments through the jack-to-jack cable and transfers it forward so that you or your audience can hear your guitar sound with more sound and less distortion.
An input receives electric energy from your instrument and forwards it towards the speaker, which converts the electric energy into sound energy and helps you hear amazing music.
The thing to notice is that there are output jacks too in an amp. So, you will have to be careful while connecting your instruments. Because if wrongly connected, the amp will produce no sound. And this is why a new amp has a name mentioned on both input and output jacks.
Why Do Guitar Amps Use 2 Inputs: A Detailed Overview
The only reason that an amp comes up with two or more inputs is the variation of impedance depending on the instruments. On most guitar amps, one input is designated for high impedance compatible instruments, and the other one is for low impedance instruments.
This is how you will be able to sound good while playing music. Most of the time, we confuse high impedance instruments with low impedance input, and the sound produced is not as effective as it needs to be. Though it does not affect your amp or the instrument, you will not like the sound produced.
So, from now onwards, do not confuse high and low input with sound. High or low input does not define the sound produced by your amp or the speaker.
What Is High Impedance Guitar Input?
Any electronic device that comes up with an output or input impedance of 600 ohms is called a high input or high output device. For such instruments, there are high impedance guitar inputs that allow you to play those instruments in the truest sense.
The best thing about it is that a high impedance input puts minimal load on the signal applied to it. This by no means reduces the sound, but it helps to improve efficiency.
For instance, an electric guitar that is used to produce sharp, fresh, and loud music comes under the category of the high impedance of Hi-Z instruments. So, if you have an electric guitar, it will be better if you connect it to the high impedance input of a guitar amp. This is how you will be able to produce good music.
What Is Low Impedance Guitar Input?
Any instrument that has an input impedance between 150 to 300 ohms falls under the category of a low impedance instrument. For such instruments, you will find a separate input jack on your guitar amp. This jack allows you to connect and play your low impedance guitar without facing any issues.
So, if you have a low impedance guitar, we will suggest you to always use a low impedance input on your amp. This is how you will produce good music and keep your amp safe at the same time.
Can You Use Both Input Of Your Guitar Amp?
Yes, you can surely use both inputs on your guitar amp at the same time. However, there are a few things that you will have to check before using both of the inputs for guitars at the same time. In most guitar amps, one input is for the guitar, and the other one is dedicated to vocals.
So, if you have such an amp, then it will be a bit risky to use both inputs for connecting guitars. Using two guitars on both inputs will apply more pressure on the amp, and in the long run, it can damage the amp.
So, if you have a normal amp that does not support two guitars at the same time, you should avoid using it to connect two guitars at the same time.
Now, if you have an amp that allows you to connect two guitars at the same time, things are going to be easy for you. With such an amp, you will be able to easily connect your guitars. However, in this case, you should not expect distortion effects from the amp. Using two guitars at the same time will cut down on this benefit of your amp.
Is It Possible To Plug In Two Guitars In A Single Input Amp?
Well, this is what most guitarists find impossible, but in reality, connecting two guitars in a single input amp is surely possible. However, you will not get the same results as you get from a two-input amp, but you will be good enough to perform well in an emergency.
But, you need to ensure that both guitars are equalized and synchronized for perfect music.
So, what you need to do is get an RCA to plug an adapter and two RCA to plug cables. After it, connect your plug adapter and the cables to the amp and guitar, and you are good to go. So, from now onwards, connecting two guitars to a single input guitar amp is not going to be an issue for you.
Can You Use An Electric Guitar Amp For An Acoustic Guitar?
This is not something you need to worry about. It is perfectly fine to connect an electric guitar to an acoustic guitar amp or vice-versa. An acoustic or semi-acoustic guitar amp will surely affect the electric guitar. Both the electric and the acoustic guitar may sound different, but their amps support each other perfectly.
Most people think that connecting an acoustic or semi-acoustic guitar amp to an electric guitar will affect the amp. However, these all are mere stereotypes and nothing else. Even some of the most notable guitarists use semi-acoustic guitar or an acoustic guitar amp for an electric guitar.
Will It Be Possible To Guitar And Bass On The Same Amp?
This is one of the most commonly asked questions. So, the answer to this is yes, but with certain conditions. We know that a guitar comes with lower resonance than a bass guitar. Therefore, if you are going to use a guitar amp for bass and guitar, things will surely go south for you.
Using a bass on a guitar amp separately is so hazardous that we cannot even think of using bass and guitar together on a guitar amp. So, what options are we left with? Well, what we can do is use a bass amp and connect both of your guitars to it.
A Bass amp is meant to bear high resonance, so it will easily bear the pressure generated by your bass and other guitars.
This is the only reason you will be able to use bass and guitar on the same amp. Other than it, you will be only ruining your amp and nothing else.
How Will A Console Help Convert A Single Input Amp Into Two Input Amp?
A console is mostly used by those who have a single input amp and want to use various instruments on that particular amp. A console allows you to connect many instruments to a single amp without affecting the amp or compromising the sound quality.
However, you must know that using a console is one of the most expensive options because you will have to connect various instruments to a single input amp.
But, the best thing about a console is that it comes with a mixing option. So, with a console, you will have more control over the music produced. Along with it, a console allows you to EQ your guitar differently.
So, if you have a single input amp and want to use another guitar on it at the same time, a console can help you do it.
Is Recording Possible While Connecting Two Guitars In A Single Amp?
Certainly, it is possible to record while connecting two guitars to your amp, but this is something that we will never suggest you do. We guitarists do this to save time from recording twice, but in the long run, recording two guitars at the same time consume more time than recording separately.
For instance, if one guitar loses the tempo, you will have to correct both guitars while recording. With this said, you will be doubling your time and efforts if you are recording two guitars at once.
So, what we suggest is that you record separately and then mix it. Though it will take time, this is the best way to record. However, if you think that you are expert enough to record two guitars at once, you are good to go. This is how you save time, and the best part is that the quality of the music is not affected.
To end, we can say that now you know well why guitar amps have two inputs. Whether you are an amateur or professional, from now onwards, you will have no issues relating to your guitar amps and inputs.
Above, we have discussed in detail everything that you needed to know about the input of your guitar amp. Whether it was the high or low impedance of playing two guitars on a single amp, the article has justified everything to its best. However, if you find any issues or need any assistance, do let us know. We will be there to assist you.