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200 watt all-tube rackmount power amp?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by SactoBass, Sep 3, 2017.


  1. SactoBass

    SactoBass A retired civil engineer who likes all-tube amps! Supporting Member

    Jul 8, 2009
    Sacramento CA
    Do you already have your favorite rackmount preamp, and seek a rackmount all-tube power amp in the 200 watt range to go with it? If yes, this thread may be of interest to you.

    A few days ago, I started a thread on the idea of a 200 watt Ampeg SVT-VR. (That thread is still alive and well, so if you have an interest in such an amp, please go to *THAT* thread for posting on that topic.)

    One thing that happened to come up in that thread is the idea of the following:

    • a 200 watt all-tube rackmount power amp (designed for bass) that uses a quad of 6550's and uses traditional Ei iron transformers for power supply and for output designed for 200 watts (eg, *slightly* lighter trannies than the ones used in the 300 watt SVT-II non-pro), with Speakon output connectors.

    Essentially, this would be identical to the old 80-pound Ampeg SVT-300 rackmount all-tube power amp (which was just the power section of the Ampeg SVT-II non-pro), except this would be 200 watts instead of 300, and would have Speakon output connectors (plus hopefully be a little lighter.....maybe 60'ish pounds or so since the trannies wouldn't need to be quite as massive??)

    Rather than derail that other thread for such a subject, I decided to create a separate thread (this one) to ask my excellent TB brethren to indicate your level of interest in such a power amp.

    It seems there are some TB'ers who already own their favorite rackmount preamp, and would like to plug it into an all-tube power amp instead of a solid state power amp.

    I selected 200 watts because for some bassists, that would provide the "sweet spot" as some bassists feel that a 100 watt all-tube power section doesn't provide enough headroom, and a 300 watt all-tube power section has to get way too loud to reach that wonderful "just on the brink of power tube saturation" tone that some TB'ers love.

    This thread is *NOT* to discuss the excessively worn-out "tubes versus solid state" topic, so please don't go there. This thread is *ONLY* to find out the level of interest in the exact rackmount power amp I bulleted above.

    Also, I have been around the block long enough to be familiar with every amp that exists on this planet (please forgive me if that sounds boastful, as I don't mean it to sound that way). I just don't want someone to read my thread and reply quickly with "dude.....just get an old Peavey 120/120" or "grab an Aggie DB728 or the Dem 300". I am totally familiar with those power amps and others as well. Those are fine amps, but this thread is not about that as none of the all-tube rackmount power amps that I have seen match the description of what I bulleted above.

    So, please chime in with your level of interest in such a power amp! :thumbsup:
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2017
  2. SactoBass

    SactoBass A retired civil engineer who likes all-tube amps! Supporting Member

    Jul 8, 2009
    Sacramento CA
    ...and if any of you happen to know of a custom builder who would build such a power amp, please share that info as well! :thumbsup:
     
    Spaceman Ian likes this.
  3. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2006
    How many rack spaces are you thinking? 2? 3?
     
  4. Dave W

    Dave W

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    How about an Aguilar DB-359?

    2U, 200w, 50lbs.
     
    Munjibunga and Aqualung60 like this.
  5. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2006
    That's pretty much where I was going with my post. Attached to the killer preamp in the DB359 is a wonderful 200 watt rackmount tube power amp.
     
  6. SactoBass

    SactoBass A retired civil engineer who likes all-tube amps! Supporting Member

    Jul 8, 2009
    Sacramento CA
    Either. 2 or 3, or even 4 if necessary. I would prefer to go 3 or 4 and have a power amp that is not excessively deep. The Aggie 359 is only 2U, but is a whopping 17+ inches deep.

    Plus, the Aggie 359 has toroidal trannies for power supply and for output. I'm seeking a power amp with Ei trannies.
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2017
  7. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2006
    Do you have someone who can/will build this amp? I could see 3 spaces max, for my own needs. I'd want space for a preamp in a 4 space case, of which I have two doing nothing, these days. Good fan ventilation front to back so the preamp won't get cooked by the power amp. And, mounting supports on the back of the chassis, so that it can be secured to the front and rear rails of a standard 4 space SKB case. Can it be shallow enough to allow for power and speaker cables to be stored in the back of the case with the lid in place?
     
  8. SactoBass

    SactoBass A retired civil engineer who likes all-tube amps! Supporting Member

    Jul 8, 2009
    Sacramento CA
    Jeff: I *wish* I knew of a builder who would build such an amp exactly as I bulleted in my OP. But I don't know of such a person at the moment (see my post #2). :(
     
  9. mikewalker

    mikewalker Supporting Member

    Jul 30, 2017
    Canada, Eh!
    here ya go Wizard Amplification Inc.
     
  10. SactoBass

    SactoBass A retired civil engineer who likes all-tube amps! Supporting Member

    Jul 8, 2009
    Sacramento CA
    Thanks Mike! Yeah, I've been to Wizard's website a number of times in the past. Nice amps for sure! But I never see a rackmount 200 watt power amp that matches what I described in my OP.
     
  11. mikewalker

    mikewalker Supporting Member

    Jul 30, 2017
    Canada, Eh!
    They do take on custom jobs... just email them!
     
    SactoBass likes this.
  12. mikewalker

    mikewalker Supporting Member

    Jul 30, 2017
    Canada, Eh!
  13. SactoBass

    SactoBass A retired civil engineer who likes all-tube amps! Supporting Member

    Jul 8, 2009
    Sacramento CA
    Thanks Mike! I will give that some thought!
     
  14. CapnSev

    CapnSev

    Aug 19, 2006
    Coeur d'Alene
  15. SactoBass

    SactoBass A retired civil engineer who likes all-tube amps! Supporting Member

    Jul 8, 2009
    Sacramento CA
    Thanks Captain! Yep, I am aware of that "guitar" power amp. It seems like it might work for low volume bass scenarios, but it's not designed for bass. I have read mixed reviews regarding its use for bass. By chance have you played bass through one of those? If yes, please post stating your thoughts on how it sounded, particularly the strength of the lower frequencies. Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2017
  16. monsterthompson

    monsterthompson The Eighth Note Wonder Of The World

    Nov 25, 2008
    Hollywood
    AngusHasMoxie and SactoBass like this.
  17. Get a transformer DI on the output!
     
  18. Korladis

    Korladis Banned Supporting Member

    Mesa M-180 and M-190

    540169d1457103090-help-me-choose-between-mesa-m-180-peavey-classic-120-img_2094.

    Basically the power section of the D-180.

    Yes, I know it's supposed to take 6L6s, but I'm pretty sure that with a bias pot mod, it's capable of running 6550s, too.

    This M-190 appears to be fitted with 6550s:
    25356d1380141785-mesa-boogie-differential-back.
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2017
    Jefenator, SactoBass, Nev375 and 3 others like this.
  19. Ewo

    Ewo a/k/a Steve Cooper Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2008
    Huntington WV
    Just thinking aloud (figuratively speaking)... I wonder if Jack Roan (the guy who builds Noble preamps and amps) would enjoy a project like this.
     
    Spaceman Ian and SactoBass like this.
  20. john m

    john m Supporting Member

    Jan 15, 2006
    I'll take toroids over E~I construction (and performance) any day.
     
    Jeff Scott likes this.

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