Spark Tones lacking Spark(le)



  • Replaced both speakers and installed poly fil type material to all internal surfaces. It's never going to have a ton of "sparkle" without dedicated tweeters, but at least I got ride of the muddy, boomy-ness. Sounds way better if you are willing to take the time to do those 2 things.



  • @cbrandst The next step would be to find 2-way speakers (woofers with cone tweeters built in) that would fit as replacements in the Spark.



  • @dhbailey Yeah, I think that's the ultimate solution. I didn't try to find that just because of the "don't send raw output to tweeters" thing, but I don't think there is raw output being sent. But if that's not the case, why would PG not include tweeters? Maybe some of the modes do send raw output.



  • @cbrandst I think Spark didn't put in speakers with tweeters simply because of the cost. When they're selling the amp for only $220 (for the early bird specials) they can't put very expensive speakers in the amp. I think that by the time the signal gets to the speakers it's not "raw output" anymore. I think the original speakers, like the carrying strap, are more of an economic decision than anything.



  • @dhbailey True. We have to remember what this is, a low cost practice amp with some cool sounds and features. Lots of little tweaks and improvements can really drive the price up. Any one thing by itself might seem insignificant, but combined, they do start to add up.



  • Which is a shame because its only as good as its weakest link. The fact that the software and marketing is aimed at supporting full range for music playback/backing tracks is at odds with the drivers they've used, which are in line with traditional guitar amp speakers which don't need to cover the upper range and not usually subjected to the amount of bottom end in a full mix with bass, drums, etc.
    Now I don't know how much the oem speakers cost in the spark but I've put a pair of coaxials in that cost £7 each and they've transformed the sound so I doubt its about cost.



  • It's a practice amp that does a whole lot yet costs less than some single guitar pedals. It's hardly worth complaining about the tone of the speakers at this price. I agree it's a bit bass heavy, but found that adding an EQ pedal before going into the Spark was just the ticket. I normally run an EQ pedal into amps anyway as it can make all the difference in the world. Give that a try before swapping speakers or making mods.



  • @cbrandst said in Spark Tones lacking Spark(le):

    Replaced both speakers and installed poly fil type material to all internal surfaces. It's never going to have a ton of "sparkle" without dedicated tweeters, but at least I got ride of the muddy, boomy-ness. Sounds way better if you are willing to take the time to do those 2 things.

    So, how do Vox, Fender et al amps do it? Why does my Axe FX thru my Xitone 2x12 FRFR cab get sparkle, all without a tweeter. Why does my Spark, when playing Sirius/XM and other Music sources get it, AND on some amp models?

    IMHO. it's some of the amp models, not the hardware. There are some that should have it that don't, and no way to dive down in the Amp model, like on a Helix, Axe FX etc can. But, some models do on the Spark.

    Now, I have my spark up on a desk, with the front elevated with acoustic grade hard foam. And that makes a difference. Being off access reall muddies the Spark quite a bit.

    And you can always use a treble boost or clean drive to boost top end as well. My Klon Centaur Clone does this great.

    I kind of wish PG would add a treble boost to the drive pedal area.



  • @cybermgk Not sure. Maybe they forgot to "carry the one" somewhere in the code when they calculated how much of a given frequency to send out. I hope that's it. Mine sounds subjectively better than before my tweaks, but it could still use some improvement. I notice it most when sending audio to the device from something other than the guitar, like a music source on the phone. Some phone EQ might help, but an EQ pedal in line with the guitar wouldn't touch that.



  • @folkunlimited same here. Playing instruments for a long time and used many amps. Spark is a good beginner amp but sound quality is tricky and it feels exactly like you described. At the end of the day it does the job I guess, but don't keep high expectations. Also, if you want to use it as a bluetooth speaker sound quality is really low and you cannot tweak anything. I keep this in my office just to kill some time in between office work and that's it. If I want to play and hear what I play, I plug my guitar into big guys



  • @homerdan Wow, using my Spark as a bluetooth speaker playing audio from my iPad the sound quality is great. I'm sorry you're finding the sound quality low. I wonder if that might improve if you raise the volume on your device and control the actual sound from the amp with the audio volume control on the Spark.