I was just using someone else's guitar and it stopped working. I'm not sure if something I did damaged it

It was some kind of tube amp.

The signal was: guitar -> amp -> amp effect send -> input on audio interface -> laptop -> daw (intending to add a software reverb) -> audio interface send -> amp effect return -> amp speaker.

The speaker on the amp remained plugged in at all times. The input I used on the audio interface was the hi z, which may not have been the right one actually. But I would assume that would only affect the audio interface, if anything, (maybe audio quality) and not the amp?

The amp was seemingly working at first. After I did the above I was getting no sound. I tested it a bit afterwards, with just straight guitar -> amp and was getting nothing. Sometimes I would get some sound and then it would go away again.

Did anything I did have the potential to have killed this amp? It looked like an obscure amp which hadn't seen much use in a while.

  • What you did sounds OK in general terms, what was the specific amp, interface, and cables used though? Oct 3, 2016 at 6:35
  • I'm not sure what the amp was. A make I'd never seen before. The cables were just standard mono quarter inch audio cables. The interface is a Steinberg ci2+. It's a sort of lower end 2 inputs, 2 outputs. Oct 3, 2016 at 6:47

1 Answer 1


You usually hear it when killing an amp. They don't tend to go quietly. An audio interface can produce enough of a racket for killing one. However, it's pretty hard to do while it is still turned down.

But killing an amp is not a come-and-go experience as usually the thing that goes up in smoke is the speaker or the power amplifier. It is more likely that you are dealing with bad contacts, either because your cable is broken or because the connectors are broken or because the cable plugs are not matching the sockets in diameter or because you are using a stereo cable for an instrument cable connection or because the house fuse has blown for some reason or because your power cable or socket are iffy.

Or because there is a bad solder point in the amp itself and you've been the unlucky one to find it. Oh, or because some pot has developed bad contacts in which case turning it back and forth should be a noisy experience with intermittent tone. There is pot spray for that.

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