150w or 100w? For garage band/small gigs?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by jaymeister99, Oct 17, 2005.


  1. jaymeister99

    jaymeister99

    Aug 2, 2005
    Im looking into getting a bigger amp, my 15w just isnt going to cut it playing with guitars and a drummer. The two guitarists are currently playing 60w amps.

    Anybody got some input on the minimum size amp I need for playing in the garage w/band or a small (make that tiny) gig?
     
  2. I have 150 watts and it's fine.
     
  3. Lowtonejoe

    Lowtonejoe Supporting Member

    Jul 3, 2004
    Richland, WA
    I think the general consensus is around 300w BUT...and again I say BUT...that absolutely totally depends on the gig.

    You may, infact, be able to gig effectively with even less than 100w if it is a quiet 'background noise' type of gig or a 'coffeehouse' gig.

    My first amp was a Peavey TNT 115s. IIRC, it was only 140w and it had a 15 in it. I gigged with it and was heard but everyone in the band was mature enough to stay in the mix properly. An excellent band to be in, too bad it didn't even las a year.

    My personal opinion is to get the most power you can afford.

    :D

    Joe.
     
  4. jaymeister99

    jaymeister99

    Aug 2, 2005
    We will be playing mostly classic rock, 70-80s metal, and some newer alternative stuff. The guitarists are mature enough to keep their amps at a nominal level, but I still need to be heard through the drums.

    Primarily this is for playing in the garage, and toting back and forth from my house. So I dont want anything huge like a big 300-400w stack. Something big enough, but as small as possible.
     
  5. brich74

    brich74 Guest

    I use a Fender Bassman 150 and have played small bars, large clubs and outdoor gigs. I almost always have PA support so my rig is just my monitor. However we just played a small bar on Saturday and I went w/o PA. It was barely loud enough but got the job done. For playing in a garage or "tiny gig" my 150 would be plenty. I am however convinced that I am going to get a more powerful setup. I may regret it from a convenience standpoint, but I feel I could use a little more oomph. Of course it all depends on the situation. I am lucky enough to be in a band where it's more important to be good than loud so if you play with a couple shred heads w/ Marshall half stacks you may need something more (or tell them to turn the F down).
     
  6. Something like a Music Man HD-150 puts out a lot of power for an amp rated at under 200W, but you need to match it with an appropriatly sensitive cab to get that working. I don't think that going to a 300-500W rig is necessarily more weight or hassle, but it depends on *which* rig. Lugging gear is the price paid for playing bass in a rock band. I don't know if there is a good solution that won't set you back 1500 bucks ore more.

    Some rigs, like the Fender Rumble 100, are portable and put out a lot of volume. That wouldn't be a bad choice. Volume is such a tricky matter because all it takes is one player to break ranks and turn up and suddenly everybody has to play louder. So if you think that the band is disciplined, put it to the test and run something like an Ampeg B100r and see how it goes.

    Whatever you do, don't rely on manufacturer's wattage claims. If at all possible try the gear out with your bass.
     
  7. chrisb7601

    chrisb7601

    Aug 30, 2005
    Speaking of Fender Rumble 100, that was my choice mainly since I'm new and decided it was a decent sounding/decent priced starter amp. I paid $259 new at Guitar Center.

    It is fairly loud. I play in our average-sized church, in the main sanctuary with a pretty hard hitting drummer. It's adequate, although if it gets wild I have to go into the upper range. More headroom would be nice, I'll probably get a head/cab setup in the future then use the Rumble at home.

    Like I said it is fairly loud, no problem hanging with the drums. It would be plenty for garage or "tiny" gigs -- it works for me and I would not call our service tiny. You asked what would be "minimum," there are probably 60 watters that would work, you might even try a Rumble 60 but for me the 100 was only another 60 bucks...

    Hope this helps,
    Chris
     
  8. jaymeister99

    jaymeister99

    Aug 2, 2005
    I dont think im going to go down to a 60w, but from what I have heard Im leaning toward the 150. Seems like a typical 100w would probably work, but likely be borderline in many situations I might need it for. The 150 should do just about everything I need it for.

    I think its going to come down to price. A 100w usually runs around $300-350, a good 150w is going to run at least $400-500.
     
  9. chaosMK

    chaosMK

    May 26, 2005
    Albuquerque, NM
    Hi-fi into an old tube amp
    What particular pieces of equipment are you looking at?

    I would suggest an Ashdown MAG-300 (300 watts, 20lbs, about $300) head, if you dont mind the coloration.
     
  10. Lowtonejoe

    Lowtonejoe Supporting Member

    Jul 3, 2004
    Richland, WA
    What about this?

    A 180w 15 inch combo for $350 with free shipping.

    Click here.

    :D

    Joe.
     
  11. Question: Would you rather go out with a blonde, or a brunette?

    Answer: Go out with the one with nicest rack!

    Similarly, should you get the amp with 150W, or 100W?

    Answer: Get the one that sounds the best. 50% more watts isn't going to mean squat. If you're choosing between 300 or 400W and a 100W head, then watts enters the picture. Otherwise try both, see which one you can get a good tone with the least amount of tweaking.

    Twice the watts = 3dB, barely noticable volume increase, only 50% is no difference at all.

    Randy
     
  12. jaymeister99

    jaymeister99

    Aug 2, 2005
    Im not an acoustics expert so bear with me. How does that work out to only another 3db increase with a 50% increase in wattage?
     
  13. No, 100% increase in wattage is 3dB louder. It would take 200W to be 3dB louder than 100W in the same speaker. And 400w to be 6dB louder than 100w.

    50% increase is even less than 2dB bump in volume.

    Randy

    dB= 10*(log (Pa/Pb))

    3=10*(log (200w/100w))

    1.75dB= 10*(log (150w/100w))
     
  14. jaymeister99

    jaymeister99

    Aug 2, 2005
    I was considering that amp. How does it sound? I prefer deep bass.
     
  15. Lowtonejoe

    Lowtonejoe Supporting Member

    Jul 3, 2004
    Richland, WA
    Randy, the headroom you gain from doubling your wattage has to count for something.

    :D

    Joe.
     
  16. Lowtonejoe

    Lowtonejoe Supporting Member

    Jul 3, 2004
    Richland, WA
    I've never used the amp but I have heard tons of good stuff about Ashdown products.

    Also, I have not heard anything bad about this particular model of amp.

    If I were you I would give it a shot but if I didn't like it I would send it back.

    But then if I were you I would be looking for a used Peavey TNT.

    :D

    Joe.
     
  17. Mattski

    Mattski

    Jan 6, 2003
    Cleveland, OH
    Do you need a combo or a seperate head and cab? One of my favorite smaller heads is the GK 400RB (200 watts @ 4ohms). You can pick them up used on the bay for less than $200 shipped. Very loud with great tone for the wattage and price. You will need a cab to go with it. I recomend the Avatar SB112 for what you describe. You can add to it later if you want.

    Good luck!
     
  18. snappytom

    snappytom

    Aug 17, 2005
    ChicagoLand
    Go for the power and add some flexibility by getting a 300-500 watt head (at 4 ohms) that will also run 200-250 watts at 8 ohms.
    Then get 2 cabinets such as a 1-15 and a 2-10. When you need all the power, stack 'em up and crank it. If doing a small gig just bring 1 (I would suggest the 2-10).

    I have this setup with an Ampeg B2R, SVT15EN, SVT210HE, and it works great. I leave one cabinet at the house where we practice and keep one at home, all I carry is the head.

    The real nice this about this config is you can put together a very decent wall of sound but the 3 parts can be hauled around fairly easy.
     
  19. jaymeister99

    jaymeister99

    Aug 2, 2005
    NO STACKS! Im just starting to get back into playing. I dont want to have a head and two seperate stacks.

    The whole idea here is small. How much I need to get by. If I get into some serious gigs then I might buy a bigger setup, maybe spend $1,500+ on a good stack. But that wont happen for at least another 3 years. Now Im looking to spend under $400 for something good enough to keep up with a pair of 60w guitar amps and a drummer in the garage.
     
  20. Lowtonejoe

    Lowtonejoe Supporting Member

    Jul 3, 2004
    Richland, WA
    Jay if you can affford $399 save up $30 dollars more and get this. Heck, if you have a visa or debit card you can even make 3 monthly payments.

    Click here.

    A single 15 speaker 300w amp combo.

    Shipping is free.

    Still an Ashdown but light years above the other I pointed out to you.

    If this doesn't work for you then a stack is in your future.

    :D

    Joe.