GB Contour 115 vs. GK MB115 shootout!
As I know a bunch of you have shown a lot of interest (and questions) about the GB Countour combos, I' figured I'd post up my OPINIONS. I've had the GK 115 combo (1st edition) for a couple years, and just got the Contour this Monday (Damn you TB for all the gas!!!! LOL). I use both a Squier Protone 5 w/flats, and a home built 4 string w/rounds and Carvin electronics (jazz pups).
Obviously, the GK is somewhat smaller and notably lighter, but the GB is no fridge, and quite manageable. Aesthetics is subjective, but Ill give the edge to the GB. The GB grill is a good bit sturdier.
Now to the important stuff: features. They both have a contour mode. The GK is on/off, and sweet, but a little too much. A sweep knob would make a big diff. The GB has the sweep, is and is very subdued and not as sweet in comparison. Combining the 2 would be perfect. I'll call this a tie. The GB has a groundlift on the DI, Lacking on the GK. The GB has a tuner out/mute (nice), and lights to show clipping, etc. Of course the GB has the 500 watts and ability to add a cab. Not a fan of tweeters so a draw for me, but I might give the edge to GB. The 3 way switch though is very stiff and feels pretty cheap..maybe a problem (for some) down the road?
EQ: I'm still experimenting w/the GB variable mids controls, but have yet to dial in the sweet vintage tone I'm in search of. I can get closer w/the GK, but can't get the thick tones I like on the D and especially G string I like. The GB is better/thicker up top. Again a tie at this point?
Power/punch: While I'm no longer gigging (well almost never), the best approximation I can get at the moment is cranking up the stereo and jamming out. The GB wins here (even w/o an extension cab). It's more middy/punchy and cuts through more.
Tone: again very subjective. The GB is more even across the strings, which I very much like. However to my surprise (and disapointment) the GK has a much creamier/smoother bottom. Where it seems to love the B string and BREATHE, the GB seems to "tolerate it" for lack of a better description. The GB is more mid present (hence the "punch") and will probably shine more in a band situation? I'd like to be able to dial in just a bit more sweetness, but not there yet. It is very articulate which I like. Maybe it still needs to break in a bit? As I like a warm tone, I'm glad I didn't get the GB210.
Summary: I really don't need 2 combos these days, but will keep both for a little while at least. Given the GB reviews to date, I was expecting the GB to blow the GK away.... it didn't in most respects (but does in a few) and falls short a tad in the warmth dept. If I HAD to make a choice today, given it's new (3 year warantee) more power, features, and can run another cab, I guess I'd go w/the GB, but would miss the smooth buttery low end of the GK. I don't think (in hindsight) I'd pay anywhere near MSRP for the GB, but the deals now are hard to pass up! Hope this helps some of you......bottom line... they are both VERY good (but not perfect) combos! YMMV
Last edited by Joedog : 01-23-2014 at 02:27 PM.