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300W vs 450W... is it a noticable upgrade?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Dkerwood, Apr 9, 2006.

  1. Dkerwood


    Aug 5, 2005
    Hey guys!

    My bassist has a Behringer 300W head pushing a 4 ohm Steelsound 2x12 cab (rated at 600W). As is, she's pushing the amp to clipping level consistently to keep up with the band since our PA doesn't have enough bass to support her. We have to compromise tone by rolling off bass to get more volume.

    My question is this - now that the new 450W Behringer is out, would it be worth the hassle to trade in the 300W unit toward a 450W unit? Would there be a lot more headroom?

    As a comparison, I'm using a 130W Fender 2x12 solid state combo, but it's usually mic'd through the PA - probably around 2500W pushed through 4 main PA cabs and 2 monitors.
  2. If she's clipping, I would upgrade.

    It might not be a huge upgrade, but it might save her from clipping the amp, which WILL damage the speakers.
  3. simpy1


    Mar 31, 2005
    New Zealand
    I'd probably try to find something used that is 300W +, many people are skeptical of Behringer's power ratings. You might find that other 300 W amps are louder.
  4. I owned the BX3000t and found it to be woefully underpowered. From what I have heard the 450w version isnt a great deal better. I would suggest saving a little more for a better head, a 300w Hartke or GK head would most likely put out more volume than the equivalent Behringer, in my experience.

    Saying that, if you dont have adaquate PA to handle the bass, you are gonna need a lot more watts and a decent sized cab, I would suggest 500w minimum with a 4x10" at least. Ideally 4x10" and a 15" or an 8x10".
  5. Peg_legs


    Nov 19, 2005
    Huntsville, AL
    If you like Behringer, how about adding their 1500 watt PA amp. I think they go for around $200-250 new. Or upgrade the PA.
  6. If he's just lacking a little volume to keep up, it might be enough to get him where he needs to be, but it's not a huge difference. Volume increases logarithmically with wattage. You need something like 10 times the wattage to double the volume. So 1.5 times the wattage is not a huge volume increase. But, like I said, it may be just enough to allow him the headroom he needs.

    Another solution might be to get a more efficient cab. An 8x10 or something should push more sound, and better quality cabs, even with the same speaker config, can make a huge difference. Either way, 300 watts solid state is not a whole lot.
  7. bill h

    bill h

    Aug 31, 2002
    small town MN
    YOu need to ad more speak space. Try a 4 10
  8. Dkerwood


    Aug 5, 2005
    An interesting thought just hit me. The amp sounds just a tad insufficient onstage, but we've been told time and time again that it fills the room just fine. Does this sound odd? Or is it typical? I've run into it when my bass amp has been pointing at my knees and I've had to stand 6" in front of it for gigs, but never when I was 6 feet in front as she is at our shows.

    We've been putting the rig atop the drummer's bass drum case to try to help projection (and make it easier for her to hear herself), and even bass players that I trust say that her amp carries perfectly well. What would you suggest, short of putting the bass through monitors, to help us to hear her more clearly?
  9. Dkerwood


    Aug 5, 2005
    We did a lot of shopping before deciding on this rig (she's my kid sister). We played through Hartke, Behringer, Peavey, Ampeg, Crate. Fender... Every single 4x10 we used this amp head with sounded puny and thin. We couldn't start to get that "slam you in the chest" tone until we hit 8x10, which was out of the price range.

    So, finally, on a whim, we picked up the SS cab on the internet, based upon reccomendations from fellows on this site (that's how I was introduced to talkbass.com). Boom. Exactly the tone she wanted.

    So yeah. The only other cab I found that I liked was a bass voiced 4x12... but she didn't like it. She said it was too dark.
  10. bill h

    bill h

    Aug 31, 2002
    small town MN
    You may want to put one more 2 12 with it or a 1 15. You need to move more air.
  11. jvb


    Jul 11, 2005
    Canberra, Australia
    Here's a novel idea, how about upgrading to smaller guitar amps? :smug:
  12. Trevorus


    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    Get more speakers first. then, if you need more power, get a used hartke as was mentioned.
  13. georgestrings

    georgestrings Inactive

    Nov 5, 2005
    Another vote for more speakers, then a better amp...

    - georgestrings
  14. Dkerwood


    Aug 5, 2005
    Can't do more speakers. 4 ohm minimum on the amp. This cab is it, unless anyone knows how to rewire it to be 8 ohms. Also, is there a way to measure output wattage?

    And it's not a guitar amp thing... :p I'm a bass player who also plays guitar, folks. I'm not a wanker guitarist. I turn the guitar amp up to all of "1" and mic it through the PA. If it could go any quieter without losing tone (and losing the signal for the mic), I'd turn it down more. The only time I turn it up is if the bass guitar and drums cover it onstage, even through the monitors.

    So yeah, I dunno. I've considered reccomending a Behr power amp/different preamp combo. I've even considered using the Behr head as a preamp, but that seems kind of silly. Can you reccomend a cheap rackmounted preamp that would sound as full as the Behr head?
  15. A)Better amp that is non-behringer and more wattage
    B)Better amp that is non-behringer and another cab for more speakers.

    Either or.
  16. scottbass

    scottbass Bass lines like a big, funky giant

    Jul 13, 2004
    Southern MN
    Unless you can get a favorable trade-in for her current head, or if you can sell it for almost what she paid, the cheapest route is to buy a power amp (PA amp) that will handle bridged mono into 4 ohms. Then use her current Behringer as just a preamp and run the send or the line out from the current amp to the new power amp and then into the cab. You can get the Behringer EP1500 1500 watt power amp for less than $300 new. Then you've just gotta be careful not to blow that 2x12 cab. The next purchase would be another 4 ohm cab - a 1x15 or maybe another 2x12 or even a 2x10. Then you could run the power amp in parallel mode and drive each of the cabinets with 750 watts.
  17. throw_this_away


    Mar 30, 2006

    So so SO true... if only more guitarists were not so thick. :rollno:
  18. Mids. Mids and a nice buzzy overdrive pedal (like the odb-3) will help her scream mate. roll off the bass a bit. I usually say that if you need to put the bass higher than the middle (i run mine at around 7 or 8 but that's just because the bass doesn't leap out of my 15 like it does out of others), the problem is your cab. get a larger speaker. she'll be cruisin for a bruisin then
  19. You could just turn the volume down .. In my band there are two guitar players both with 65 watt combos and I do fine with mi GK amp running at 8 ohms - 200 watts .

    If you cant turn down the volume :confused: .. get another amp for bass but stay away from rouge behringer or gorilla .
  20. Kael


    Dec 26, 2004
    Oklahoma City
    A much more noticeable upgrade will be to the lose the Behringer for a better brand.

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