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Can Clipping Damage Equipment?

Posted: Tue Jul 15, 2014 9:50 pm
by penguinpajamas
Hey guys, so the title is pretty self explanatory. I'm just wondering if clipping audio is damaging to equipment in any way (besides speakers).

Thanks

Re: Can Clipping Damage Equipment?

Posted: Tue Jul 15, 2014 10:02 pm
by tkarmakid
I'm curios to know this also.
I read here and there that it will damage your speakers and your hearing. But even at a low volume? I mean, your tracks might be at full volume blasting in the red on the master channel, but if your speakers are at a low volume will it still hurt your hearing. I can understand the speakers a little bit because in a way it would be like a train going off its tracks, the speakers would lose their place. But at a low volume will it still damage your hearing, speakers and other equipment and if so, why?

Re: Can Clipping Damage Equipment?

Posted: Tue Jul 15, 2014 10:40 pm
by aioffermann
For the most part, no - I'm pretty sure. I think you only have to be careful about going into the red with any analog component - you may want to overdrive it for the sound but if you do that alot it'll eventually wear out the component I thiiiiiiiink... I don't think going into the red is bad for the speakers at a low volume. Going into the red in the box is absolutely no problem as far as damage control is concerned.

Re: Can Clipping Damage Equipment?

Posted: Tue Jul 15, 2014 11:42 pm
by penguinpajamas
Just to clarify, I'm talking about damaging physical audio equipment; my audio interface in particular.

Re: Can Clipping Damage Equipment?

Posted: Wed Jul 16, 2014 1:34 am
by doghouse
It's not likely than an audio interface will be damaged in any way from digital clipping.

Re: Can Clipping Damage Equipment?

Posted: Wed Jul 16, 2014 3:52 am
by penguinpajamas
doghouse wrote:It's not likely than an audio interface will be damaged in any way from digital clipping.
I'm not referring to clipping within Ableton but rather clipping audio that's being fed into the interface. I have some pedals that tend to produce a clipping signal if not careful and I just want to make sure they're not damaging my interface.

Re: Can Clipping Damage Equipment?

Posted: Wed Jul 16, 2014 9:31 am
by re:dream
There is no cause for worry.

Just for interest's sake - what pedal is it, what audio interface, and why / how is it causing clipping?

Re: Can Clipping Damage Equipment?

Posted: Wed Jul 16, 2014 10:09 pm
by penguinpajamas
re:dream wrote:There is no cause for worry.

Just for interest's sake - what pedal is it, what audio interface, and why / how is it causing clipping?
It's a Roland Space Echo being fed into a Focusrite 18i20. The feedback can get pretty crazy and create a clipping signal pretty quickly if not care

Re: Can Clipping Damage Equipment?

Posted: Thu Jul 17, 2014 5:54 pm
by pskept
it doesn't seem that everyone out there agrees with the unanimous advice given in this thread. i'd suggest doing some searches because threads on muffwiggler and gearslutz will turn up different advice. you'll find people swearing that damage can be caused to audio interfaces with signals that are too hot along with people showing you damaged components that they have removed from their interfaces due to signals that are too hot.

Re: Can Clipping Damage Equipment?

Posted: Thu Jul 17, 2014 6:10 pm
by re:dream
If the signal is absolutely too loud it may cause damage

But that is unrelated to clipping.