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$1200 - how would you split it up?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by basstrader, May 21, 2004.

  1. I'm considering getting a combo amp and a new bass (5 string). I figure I could spend about $1200 for a bass *and* combo. How would you split it up, and what recommendations would you give me for either the bass or the combo? I'm planning togo the used route - do you think I could find an F bass and an EA 800 combo fpr that? :D Weight is a consideration for the amp.

    I'm thinking maybe an MTD Grendel or maybe a Killer B or Growler if I could find one, and I'm somewhat open on an amp, but not really interested in Ampegs, I'd prefer a more modern sound. I'd be interested in an iAmp whizzy combo, if I could find one for the right price.

    So any thoughts?:confused:
  2. nonsqtr

    nonsqtr The emperor has no clothes!

    Aug 29, 2003
    Burbank CA USA
    "do you think I could find an F bass and an EA 800 combo fpr that?"

    Not a snowball's chance in hell. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news. Or were you just kidding? :)

    You obviously seem to like the higher end basses, and it that's what you're looking for, 1200 bucks is a pretty small budget. On the other hand, I got my Alembic Series II for 971 dollars and change (long story), so good deals are out there if you're willing to be patient, and if your timing is perfect so you can show up with the cash just when someone desperately needs to pay off their credit cards.

    Let's talk about amps. A used Carvin DCM-2000 will fulfill all your power amp needs, it has mondo power and it's clean and very reliable. They can be had in the 350 dollar range in excellent condition. They're a tad heavy though. If weight is an important factor, you might consider a Stewart World 2.1, it's 2100 watts at 17 pounds, and you can find those used in the 700 dollar range. Then you'll need a decent preamp to go with that, and there's a lot of choices there. If it were me, I'd start by building a little DIY preamp just to get up and running, which you can do for about 10 bucks in parts and 2 hours with a soldering iron, and then upgrade whenever possible (or necessary). For a speaker, I'd get the cheapest most beat up cab I could find (unloaded), and put a decent 15" speaker in there, like an EVX-150A or something, or maybe one of the newer high power Eminence models.

    By the way, have you tried a Bongo bass? They're surprisingly good for the price, very versatile. Might be worth a checkout.
  3. James Hart

    James Hart

    Feb 1, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: see profile
    Natural Ash G&L tribute L-2500 and an Ashdown MAG combo

  4. Brian Barrett

    Brian Barrett

    Nov 25, 2001
    Murfreesboro, TN (Nashville)
    Dealer LowEndBassShop.com, Builder LowEndBasses.com
    What do you have currently?

    Instead of spending all $1200 and finding a bass that you might not be happy with in the short-run and a cab/head or combo that you really won’t be happy with in the short-run why not spend the money on the piece that is really falling short in your setup. Get something that will last and then save to buy the other piece that will equal the incredible setup you would like to achieve in the long-run!

    I would suggest looking into power amp/preamp setups as well. A great power and cab would be a big suggestion because those are the two most important parts of your rig. The preamp can be changed out over time to find what you like later or fits your style. With a head unit, you don’t have the luxury of just selling the preamp and buying another to replace it, which isn’t as expensive as buy and selling head units. You buy/sell used preamps with out loosing. The amp will always be your workhorse, but get a good one!! Cabs are extremely important as well and of course you’re bass.

    But depending on your gear, I’d pick one or the other and focus on that!
  5. Emprov


    Mar 19, 2003
    I would agree with Brian in that I'd invest in either an amp or bass, probably an amp. That being said, there's a lot that you can do with $1200 when you go amp shopping. Genz Benz has some great gear, may be a GBE 600? Thunderfunk? Used iAmp 800? Any of those with a nice cab. (I *love* my Dr. Bass 2060 w/built in 2 space rack!). Then, later on invest in the high-end bass that you're GAS'ing for.
  6. miccheck1516

    miccheck1516 Guest

    Feb 15, 2003

    Have you tried this yourself? Id really like to give it a go in the near future..... Any hints/tips/Etc.???
  7. Yeah, I've done that. I built the preamp section of an Ampeg B-25 to use with an old tube power amp from an organ my church was tossing out. Lot's of fun. There are schematics all over for anything from a simple one transistor buffer thing, to all out preamps with all the bells and whistles.

    But on the other hand I've run into some incredible deals on older used stuff. I just got a Peavey Probass 1000 preamp (not a Demeter, I know) for $30.00. I paid $100 for an Ampeg B2R a while back that needed a $10 part for repair. Worked like new. Then I sold it.

    Back to my original question: I shouldn't admit this, you'll think I'm crazy, but I'd have ot sell my Roscoe to be able to do this. I just don't use it that much, and I need an amp to do any playing out at all. So I figure I could sell the Roscoe, replace it with something more affordable, and get an amp to go with it. If I wasn't clear the first time, I'm looking for a combo, not a rack full of stuff to honk around. Bass in one hand, amp in the other is my idea of good.

    other amp possibilities:
    Genz Benz ML200 2x10, Yorkville has a similar deal, ashdown Mag combo if I could find one for the right price, or maybe a LowDownSound 2x8 airhead. I hear the buzz is quite good about them.

    a Carvin BB75 with new electronics, Peavey Cirrus, the G&L idea is a good one, except I think the headstock is a little goofy looking. The MTD/Tobias's I mentioned are basses I've seen on ebay for $600-700, that's kind of what I'm thinking at this point.

    so, more ideas please, or comments on the gear I've mentioned.
  8. kobass

    kobass Supporting Member

    Nov 3, 2003
    Outside Boston
    How would I split up $1200? That's easy! $1199 for me, and $1 for you! :D

    Sorry, couldn't resist.

    Good luck!
  9. Happy MurphDay

    Happy MurphDay

    Mar 9, 2004
    good one kobass, real funny
    damn new englanders with thier bad jokes... lol
  10. MascisMan


    Nov 21, 2003
    Dallas, Tx
    I would split it up like this:

    $500 bass
    $700 amp

    For basses my number one choice would be used USA G&L's. For $500 you can get a used LB100, SB-1, SB-2, or L2000. All american made and all great instruments.

    For amps, I would look used as well. Maybe a used 700RB (around $350-$400) and a nice cab ($350-400) or a used GK 700RB/210 combo for around $800 as seen here:

  11. miccheck1516

    miccheck1516 Guest

    Feb 15, 2003
    So how did you get the PCB board and everything made up? are all the parts easily available that are required? Would you have any usefull links or 'how-to's' for making bass preamps?
  12. No pc board. I used an old chassis from a 50's heathkit hifi preamp. It had the tube sockets, enough front panel controls, and was full of old parts that I could use. You could get by with the perfboard that Rad shack sells. They would have all the basic components like op amps and resistors and stuff, you just have to wire it point-to-point. Also check Mouser, PartsExpress.com and digikey.com for parts.

    As for web sites, do a search on "guitar effects project schematic" and it should turn up thousands of hits. There's one that I think is called geofex.com, and a bunch of other DIY pages full of schematics and how-to's and stuff. There used to be a book called Electronic projects for Musicians by Craig Anderton - he knows his stuff. If you're into the old tube amps of yore, check out Aspen Pittman's book, it's called something like "The Guitar Amp Book". They would probably be available at audioxpress.com. They're much into speake building too. It's more an information/book store than a parts place
  13. Yeah, I thought of G&L, I should check them out closer. We have a great little music store here in the Twin Cities called My Music Store that are dealers for George and Leo. I'm not a huge GK guy, I had an 800RB for a while, and while it did what it did very well, I thought it was one dimensional. Same with a 200MB combo. I checked out the Genz Benz and Yorkville sites, They both had some interesting looking combos.
  14. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    Are you going to be gigging out regularly or is the rig going to be something you are going to just use in the house for a the foreseeable future ???

    That's the main factor to me for someone in your shoes.
  15. 450 amp
    750 bass
  16. lo-freq

    lo-freq aka UFO

    Jan 19, 2003
    DFW, Texas
    Used Fender Roscoe Beck 5 & used SWR Workingman 12.
  17. Rickbass, I will be playing out some, mostly in church, so I don't need the massive wall of sound. So I want it to be small and portable. lo-freq, I don't mean to dis your bass, but I just don't like the looks of most Fenders all that much. Time to check the classifieds!
  18. NeedMoreBass

    NeedMoreBass unregistered

    Feb 14, 2003
    A great bass for the money is a Carvin LB75. I have one in mint shape for $500. That would leave you with $700 for an amp.
  19. Wilbyman


    Sep 10, 2003
    Parkersburg, WV
    I think a LDS airhead would be perfect if you have a 2 space head you like. I think they're $360.00 and shipping.

    If you don't have to get another head, that leaves you with a niche 800.00+ for a bass which will bring something quite nice. I think the G&L idea is a good one...I've seen really nice looking JB-2's (I think that's the jazz style one?) for that or less. Also, you could definitely get a Cirrus for that; a LDS cab with a good head and a Cirrus would be as deadly a setup as any!

  20. watspan


    Nov 25, 2002
    madison, wi
    for my $1,250 i got a used Reverend rumblefish, new Hartke ha5000 (250+250 biamp) and a used Ampeg pr1528he -single cab w/ angled 15, 2x8 +horn (biamped)

    I'm not saying that's the way to go for everyone, but that's what I did.