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500w class d recommendations

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by vinnydbass, Oct 6, 2018.


  1. vinnydbass

    vinnydbass

    Feb 4, 2008
    Im looking for a new head in the class d realm. I have never owned a class d amp, though played through some rigs at rehearsal studios and friends rigs.

    Currently considering:

    Ampeg PF500
    GK MB500
    Markbass (anything in that wattage)
    Darkglass MT500
    Genz-Benz or Genzler
    Aguilar TH500
    TC BQ500 (the price is the most attractive thing to me)

    Im trying to find a head around this wattage to so I can use it on multiple cab configurations, and 500w seems appropriate. I used an SWR WorkingPro 700 for about 15 years, love the tone and versatility, especially with a VT bass pedal in the chain. Im now looking for something smaller. I also love Ampeg stuff, tone-wise, so im leaning toward the pf500 or th500, though i have read the pf series having cut out issues. I’m intrigued by the tc electronic bq500 for its price and no frills approach, but for that price im also questioning the sound quality and reliabilty.

    My rigs consist of either two ampeg 210av’s, a hartke 410, or an ampeg 810. Help me out please.
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2018
  2. voided3

    voided3 Supporting Member

    Nov 11, 2008
    Have you checked out the Tech 21 VT Bass 500 head?
     
  3. vinnydbass

    vinnydbass

    Feb 4, 2008
    I have, my only problem is that i dont require the vt voicing at all times. I would like to turn it off, when i need to, i dont think the vt pedal sounds that great on my non-fender basses.
     
  4. voided3

    voided3 Supporting Member

    Nov 11, 2008
    I think the head has a blend knob so you can run a straight clean tone with the blend down all of the way.
     
    jeff7bass and Gluvhand like this.
  5. MrLenny1

    MrLenny1

    Jan 17, 2009
    N.H.
    I have a GK MB500 and a TC RH450.
    The GK is loud and small.
    The TC has great features and loud .
    Bought both of them used and have worked great for the last 3 years.
     
  6. vinnydbass

    vinnydbass

    Feb 4, 2008
    Hmm, i’ll look into that.
     
  7. vinnydbass

    vinnydbass

    Feb 4, 2008
    Do you have a preference in tone, between the two?
     
  8. BillMason

    BillMason Supporting Member

    Mar 6, 2007
    I’ve owned the Portaflex, a Markbass CMD121P, and a GK RB700-II (I know this isn’t Class D, but tonewise similar to the MB500). They all sound amazing, but the MarkBass is IMO the most versatile of the three due to its native transparency, the VLE knob, two mid dials, a 50/50 blended effects loop, and a post/pre-EQ switch on the XLR out. The VT Bass head is very interesting to me as I use a VT Bass DI as a switchable preamp into the Markbass, but I’d want a footswitch for it, not just a blend.

    The Portaflex is along the same idea as the Tech 21 VT head, except a SCR-DI for the preamp/EQ section. They SCR-DI and the PF500 sounded pretty much identical to my ears - great, but I liked the VT Bass better. Imma stick with my MarkBass.
     
    jeff7bass likes this.
  9. joel406

    joel406

    Dec 27, 2013
    Florida
    GK MB-500.

    Or even better.

    GK MB-800.

    I simply love the GK tone. And so do a lot of pros.

    If you want punch. Low end. Crisp highs and distinctive mids your describing a GK.
     
  10. Element Zero

    Element Zero Supporting Member

    Dec 14, 2016
    California
    Cough cough Mesa D800 cough cough... ahem.
     
  11. lfmn16

    lfmn16 Supporting Member

    Sep 21, 2011
    charles town, wv
    I'd get the Ampeg PF800, which I did. I think they've solved the issues with the PF500, but why take a chance? I use it with the PF-115 or an 8X10, as needed. It's not an SVT, but in a band setting, it sounds close enough for me.
     
  12. AboutSweetSue

    AboutSweetSue

    Sep 29, 2018
    I had the PF-500 for a few years. Put roughly 500 hours on it. No issues whatsoever. I believe the reliability issues were with early models. Anything post 2016 should be good to go, and probably earlier than that.....great amp.
     
    jamzcl, JeffC23 and Skillet like this.
  13. aproud1

    aproud1 Don't surround yourself with yourself. Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2007
    Cincy, OH
    Between your choices the Marbass and GK would be my choice. The Aguilar has a baked in tone I couldn’t get rid of. The Ampeg felt underpowered into an 8 ohm load.

    The GK sounds like a GK. So if you like the GK sound it’s a no brainer. Plenty of power.

    The Markbass Little Mark 3 sounds pretty neutral with some warmth. Hard to make it sound bad IMO. Good power here too.
     
    Spidey2112 and leonard like this.
  14. AboutSweetSue

    AboutSweetSue

    Sep 29, 2018
    I would agree that the PF-500 can be a tad underpowered in certain situations w/an 8 ohm load.
     
  15. PaulPriest76

    PaulPriest76 Supporting Member

    Dec 16, 2003
    Kentucky
    I've had the TC BH800 for about 3 years now, and I've gigged it hard. No complaints at all. FINE little amp.
    I'd say the BQ500 is great too.
     
    jeff7bass and vinnydbass like this.
  16. Frank77

    Frank77 Supporting Member

    May 2, 2011
    Montréal, Canada
    Have you considered the Quilter Bass Block? I never thought I'd go Class D until I tried one. Affordable, versatile, good sounding, and no frills.
     
  17. Bodeanly

    Bodeanly Supporting Member

    Mar 20, 2015
    Chicago
    I use a Fender Rumble 500 Head. It’s amazing, but there’s a GK MB500 in the classifieds for 400 bucks:

    For Sale - Entire bass setup
     
  18. You can drive two cabs with a five what amp.
    (Going ridiculously low power just to make a point. Could have said 50, 100, 200 watts.)
    If you need/want 500 watts for other reasons then that’s all good.
    But if the 500 watt criteria is only because you think you need that much to drive two cabs then you may be be limiting your choices. Though there are probably more 500 watt heads on the market than any other size.
     
  19. Whippet

    Whippet

    Aug 30, 2014
    I'd say TecAmp Puma and get some pedals.
    or
    Markbass Multiamp S . if you're not into buying any pedals.

    If budget is tighter, I would go with anything Ashdown.

    Personally, Multiamp or Multamp S.
     
  20. scowboy

    scowboy Supporting Member

    Jun 9, 2006
    Sacramento area
    What is your budget? What are your tonal preferences?
     
    mbelue likes this.

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