Marshall DSL 5CR - Can I use only the power amp?

Discussion in 'Marshall Amps' started by Norbert89, Feb 6, 2021.

  1. Norbert89

    Norbert89 New Member

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    Hi everyone!

    I have a DSL 5CR with effect loop, but I'm not sure if I can use it only as a power amp, so just plug an overdrive/preamp pedal into the FX loop's return input, and nothing into the front input. In the manual I saw, that do not turn on the amp without the guitar to be plugged in.

    On the net I saw many people, who are using like this their amps, because it sounds better for particular pedals with build-in preamp.

    Can I hurt my amp lile this?
    Thanks for any answer!
     
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  2. SkyMonkey

    SkyMonkey Well-Known Member

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    Hello and welcome to the MF @Norbert89 :welcome:

    Yes you can.

    I have 2 amps. A DSL40CR and a ValveState VS65R.
    I regularly run them in stereo setups where one amp is the preamp that feeds both the power amps.
    This works with either amp as the master or slave.

    I can't remember if the DSL has a switching jack at the front though.
    If you hear nothing from the 5CR when slaved, then plug a cable in the front (with the preamp pedal turned down low!).
    My VS65R has a switching jack that I put a headphone adapter into to switch the sound on.
     
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  3. Norbert89

    Norbert89 New Member

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    Thanks for the answer. Yes, there are no switching jack, or any other switch on the front panel, but I got a footswitch with the amp, ant it comes with FX loop on/off, maybe I have to turn on the fx loop, if I hear no sound. I'll try that, thanks a lot!
     
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  4. SkyMonkey

    SkyMonkey Well-Known Member

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    A switching jack is a 1/4" input jack that acts as a silencing switch for an amp.
    With nothing plugged in, the switch is OFF and amp is silenced, even the power amp.
    With a lead plugged in, the power amp is activated.
     
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  5. Max Gahne

    Max Gahne Active Member

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    The DSL40 actually has a switched input jack too. Norbert89 the switches are internal to the jack, not something you would see on the face of the amp. But the effects loop runs in and out of the DFX module which would isolate the effects loop from the ground switch in the jack. The DFX module would also isolate the power amp from the switched jack. So I'm not trying to contradict anything you wrote SkyMonkey, the DSL series would act like it doesn't have a switched jack with regards to using the FX loop like you're talking about. I'm just adding a FYI. Although I've actually never tried it on my DSL1. Just tried it, works great.
     
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2021
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  6. Norbert89

    Norbert89 New Member

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    Great informations, thank you! I'm not a specialist at this topic, so thank you for the detailed description!
     
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  7. RLW59

    RLW59 Well-Known Member

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    The manual has a warning to not turn on the amp without a speaker plugged in.

    You can run the amp without a guitar plugged in. No problem using your preamp pedal into the fx loop return.

    (If your amp is turned up loud and you plug your guitar in, there can be a loud pop or buzz as you insert the plug. Perhaps the manual said to put the amp on standby when connecting or disconnecting a guitar?)
     
  8. matttornado

    matttornado Well-Known Member

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    i have a DSL 40 Cr and I use just the power amp for slaving my PLexi. nothing plugged into the amp’s guitar input.
    works great!
     
  9. Mitchell Pearrow

    Mitchell Pearrow Well-Known Member VIP Member

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    Welcome to the forum
    Just be sure you have a speaker cable plugged into the speakers at all times with matching load ohms, this is important.
    Cheers
    Mitch
     
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  10. SkyMonkey

    SkyMonkey Well-Known Member

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    Another point about the new DSL Send/Return.

    If you connect only to the Send the signal is split.
    So you can slave another power amp and the signal still reaches the DSL power amp.
    If you connect only to the Return the internal signal chain is broken, and no signal from the preamp reaches the power amp.
    So only by bridging the Send and Return does the DSL series FX loop signal path complete.
     
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2021
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  11. Norbert89

    Norbert89 New Member

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    You should be right, I remember wrong.
    Thank you guys, you are really helpful!
     
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