I am Very Stupid
I know next to nothing when it comes to bass guitar amplification.
My wife and I both play bass in Dirty Lixx.
She plays through this ridiculous refrigerator of a rig:
It's an old Sunn Cabinet, with long ago replaced speakers. It's sporting a pair of JBL 15's these days, and she's driving it with the Hartke HA2500. The tone is pretty darn good.
Here's what I play through:
Believe it or not, the Fender Rumble 60 has not seemed underpowered in this band. That's a testament to our stage volume being quite low.
At some smaller venues, I have talked her into leaving the fridge at home, and sharing the Fender. She HATES the tone of the Fender.
So here's what I want to do. I need to get a rig that has more balls; more tone than that Fender. I want it to be considerably smaller than the Sunn cabinet.
I am going to go out to Sweetwater, Guitar Center, etc, and try some rigs out; I am hoping to get her to go with me. But is there anything you all recommend?
This TC Electronics BG250 is a Combo Amp with 250 watts. It is only 35 pounds.
This Ampeg BA-115 is a little heavier at 65 pounds, but pushes 100 watts, and is a lot easier to deal with than that fridge.
Or can I even get away with a combo?
Ampeg makes this Mini Stack, which apparently only weighs about 33 pounds for just the cabinet.
I'm not set on any of these; just showing you examples of some ideas, to get you in the mindset of what I am trying to do. I really don't want to go a lot above $400.00
We could always drive a cabinet with her Hartke head, but that leaves me in a situation where I am sharing a head with a very fussy bass player to whom I am married. She might very well drive me nuts.
Finally, if I got a fairly decent cabinet; maybe 4x10 or 1x15, for example, is there a way to A/B two heads? I'm thinking it would have to be footswitch driven to make the change from one to the other.
I appreciate all the help I can get on this. I need to lug less heavy gear, and leaving her fridge at home would really help.
The BG250 (*I* like the single 12" model) should make both of you happy. Light weight and portable for you - adequate power for her...and won't break the bank ;)
Hey Mellowin, one idea to share:
1) The Ampeg mini vr. (jeez.. don't let JimmyM see this I will not live this down..). :hiding: Honestly, it's got watts for days and I have heard it and recommended it and it has worked well and is compact and economical to boot.
If you like Ampeg, take a look at the PF-350 paired with either the PF-115LF, PF-115HE, or SVT-210AV.
Assuming you don't both play bass at the same time, I'd get the BG250 combo, and a cheap A/B pedal. Toss an eq pedal in line with one of the basses, before the A/B pedal, to make up for gain/tonal differences, and call it a day.
That Sunn 215B cab brings back memories. I had a stacked pair of those (stacked on their sides) back in the late 70's. Here's a pic of me trying to look massively cool in 1980...
I played the BG250 back-to-back with the Ampeg 115. No contest- the BG250 won hands down.
She likes the tone of the JBL 15's. You should be mic'ing that.
You could build a single 15 with one of the JBL's. Copy the Sunn but smarten up the bracing and use 1/2" ply. Use the Hartke and have a pedal or three to plug in the effect return for you. She gets all her tone in a smaller package, you get shiny new toys.
"At some smaller venues, I have talked her into leaving the fridge at home, and sharing the Fender. She HATES the tone of the Fender."
1) Can/do you cook?
2) Do you like sleeping alone?
If the answer to either of these questions is no, I'm thinking you'd best leave mama's amp alone. :eek:
The Sunn/Hartke rig is a tone monster not easily approached, let alone equaled. You need to take her out and audition a couple candidates. The Ampeg PF350/ 115hlf or the GK MB212-II are both very capable, yet much less bulky and heavy. Or maybe you should both just play through her rig. :>)
Mellow - I have other rigs but I keep going back to my BG250-115. It sounds good, is easy to carry, PLENTY of volume and will blow that Rumble 60 away.
It's not the ultimate tone, but the convenience makes up for it IMHO.
Shut up and tote mama's rig out to the truck.
Then you won't have to spend $400 on an amp that won't sound as good as hers and you'll have less stuff to load in/out.
One thing about the Sunn, add more/thicker insulation if it needs it. It will help clean up the tone, especially the mids.
The other thing I would consider is adding an fdeck HPF/pre V3 to protect the speakers, help adjust the low end cutoff for different venues and tight up the tone. There's a thread about it somewhere around here.
very cool sact...
Cheapest, and best solution IMO is getting an A/B/Y switch pedal and you both just play through her rig.
Another option in addition to what I just said is picking up a used 115 that has a sound y'all like and use that instead of the 215 cab, still using the aby box and her amp. Or, if you want that sunn/jbl tone, build, or have a carpenter friend build, a 1/2 size clone of her cab and load one jbl speaker in it.
Are you using your rumble also as a keys amp/monitor? If not, you could leave it at home all together.
You can find an amp she may like the sound of just as much, but there is no replacing the feel a cabinet of that size and volume will give you, with something smaller- regardless of efficiency.
Playing through the Sunn cabinet is just not the answer. That thing is too big and heavy. We're trying to reduce our load here. She has agreed to play through a smaller amp, but it has to sound a lot better than the Fender Rumble 60.
I've already gotten her to agree to this. I already do most of the cooking. The other thing, I'm not going to discuss on this forum, but it's just fine.
I'm looking for suggestions for amps that are smaller than hers, but sound better than mine that we can both play through so we have ONE RIG on our stage, and believe me, that stage can be TINY.
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