Guitar Amp Power Cord Question


I have a Blackstar HT-20 tube amp. It, along with my TV, is one of my last valued possessions, and I do love the thing.

Yesterday, I had the amp and my guitar in my apartment living room and I tripped over the amp cord and fell into the amp. It was plugged in and somehow I managed to break off the ground prong on the cord, which was left sticking out of the outlet.

I did some online looking around and it seems the general consensus is to NOT play the amp without this prong as I could get electrocuted. Fair enough.

Originally I thought that the power cord terminated into the back of the amp case but it turns out it unplugs easily enough from the back of the amp. Upon inspection, it looks exactly like a power cord for a PC tower. It’s male three pronged on the plug end, and female on the other with that familiar “triangle” shape of the arranged receptacles.

My question: can I just get a power cord from my PC and use it in it’s place if the connectors all align? I don’t have a bunch of money laying around and I’d like to play as it keeps my mind busy. The amp’s cord itself is not thicker gage than my PC tower’s cord. Would that work? Is there some specific power requirement I would be violating?

Thanks in advance.

You can safely use that cord.

With my bare feet in two buckets of water, outside during a thunderstorm while holding a copper pole? That’s my favorite way to play when I summon the Devil.

That kind of cable/connector is known as an IEC cable. Yes, they are interchangable. The gauge of the cable is likely fine for your amp, unless you have some incredibly massive amp that uses 208V power or draws 16 amps or something.

Sounds more like the Devil is summoning you. Don’t sell your soul at the crossroads for an IEC cord.

You need to send the amp to me for testing.

Seriously, it the cord fits, it’s fine.

Did you get the broken ground plug out of the wall outlet?

Yes. Pulled it out with my bare fingers, with reluctance. I cringed the whole time expecting to be thrown across the room but nothing happened. I tried my rig out tonight without the ground prong…it works, but I’m not comfortable playing it this way. It sounds like any old ECT cable will work, but I wasn’t sure.

You’re a better man than I am, Gunga Din! Yes, IF your house is wired correctly (a BIG “if”), what you did should be no problemo. For the future, assume nothing! Your mother and I will breathe easier. :confused:

You are fine without the ground prong. In fact, stores sell (and you’ve prolly seen) ground lifts specifically to eliminate the ground prong. Audio and video rigs use them with some regularity to prevent ground loops.

It’s no different than breaking off the ground prong tho.

Sorry guys, but in the interest of possibly effecting some non-zero increase in public safety, I’m gonna have to advise against the use of broken grounds and cheater plugs. I’ll let Wikipedia spell it out: