Advice for new players on buying amps and cabs

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Mcrelly, Jul 22, 2003.

  1. Mcrelly


    Jun 16, 2003
    Minnesota, USA
    If your picky about sound, like lot of volume and not always sure you want to carry alot (over 50lbs each) then here are some suggested shopping guidelines: 1. Save your money and buy top of the line "pro" equipment from whatever company you decide. I'd suggest SWR, Aguilar , Eden, EA, ampeg, yamaha (amps). 2. Get at LEAST 300 watts into 4ohms, sometimes I wish I had more, but by swr bass 350 CAN give you an ear-ache in smaller rooms if you want an ear-ache. 4. what about EFFECTS? come on your a bass player! <grin> o.k., maybe a compressor to even out slap bass style or sustain your notes. Maybe a chorus if you like. 4. for portability I'd suggest 210 cabs or 112 cabs. my guidline is nothing over 50Lbs each. it may look and sound REALLY cool to have a 8x10 or 4x12, but as you get older do you really want to be carrying that much weight?? with a luggage cart I can carry my two 112 cabs, rack and guitar into a gig in ONE TRIP.

    If your always complaining about price, you'll be complaining about your sound too because you will probably spend too little and get CRAP! Bass takes MORE power, Bigger magnets and Bigger speakers than guitar, so expect to spend more on a good bass rig! My current rig cost me $2830 (amp, rack, 2cabs, RBI, Guitar). IN THE LONG RUN I'VE SPENT MORE MONEY TRYING TO SAVE MONEY. everytime I 'upgrade' I lost money somewhere in depreciation, trade-in low-balling, etc. I've spent approximately $6,000 to get to the $2830 rig and sound I have now and I feel ALMOST satisfied. ouch!

    BUY PIECES unless you are SURE you only want a combo. Or have multiple rigs: Home practice combo, small rig (maybe large combo), medium (head, cab or two), big rig (pre,amp,medium and large cabs).


    any other good advice out there??
  2. baba

    baba Supporting Member

    Jan 22, 2002
    3rd stone from the sun
    Buy used.
  3. CS


    Dec 11, 1999
    Don't go on bass bulletin boards
  4. thumbtrap


    Jun 26, 2003
    Indeed. GAS is contagious.
  5. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    There is no such thing as "best".

    There's no guarantee that you're going to like a piece of gear that a bunch of other players are raving about. It's usually a mistake to buy something simply because it's trendy.

    What sounds great in a music store might not sound great at rehearsal or gig.
  6. ojthesimpson


    Jul 21, 2003
    Draper, UT
    how can you mention a thrifty half stack without saying one thing about Gallien Krueger? I got my 1001 rb for $300. It kicks any SWR I've played on and makes my friends with SVT pros jealous of how little I paid for my sound.
    I have an 8x10 cab but I'm IN A BAND that means i have 4 people to help me lug it around. If I still own the same 8x10 by the time I'm getting older it will be in pieces because I play 2-3 shows a week and tour several weeks a year.
  7. A-frickin'-men! I bought an Eden because at that time, EVERYONE on this board raved about them. It sucked, and couldn't begin to handle my low B string. What they said was "warmth" was nothing but MUD. But then again, others like them, I guess.

    Me, I now stay with Ampeg, it's never let me down.
  8. thumbtrap


    Jun 26, 2003
    I remember as a teenager wanting a Mesa Boogie Mark III Simulclass soooooooo bad. Later I finally decided that what they described in the catalog as "singing tone" was not pronounced "Sing ing" but "Singe - ing" as in to sear or cauterize. That sound has faded from popularity, but as alike as Mk III users of the era tended to sound- I could never get that tone. All I got was harsh & scratchy without the smoothness of the albums.

    I for one am glad that I didn't go "whole hog" and buy pro quality gear from the get go on that one. The used Carvin X-60C I bought instead for a couple hundred bucks has been everywhere, and is still my main gigging guitar amp, and given the price they go for on ebay right now - if it were stolen I'd probably get another if I didn't build something on my bassman chassis.

    I'm also glad that I didn't scrape up enough (at the time read, go in debt enough) to spend $2.5k on the Les Paul I wanted either. I hate LP's now. And it only cost me $325 to find that out with a LP Studio - which I got a couple years use out of and then sold at a profit.
  9. Once again, to each their own. I've never been a fan of the Gallien Kruegers... but I know several players that swear by them. I've always been a fan of SWR. The best advice I could give to a new player is to just play a ton of gear. When in the music store don't be afraid to turn up the volume a bit. Obviously not for too long as to irritate everyone there. Also when trying out an amp hit the basics. Don't pull out any "guitar store" licks. Test the low end, and the high end. The more equipment you play the more sense of what might be right for you. I'd also agree that you get what you pay for... sometimes cheap does sound cheap. Just my 2 cents.