am i crazy? or can i really find an affordable tube power amp?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by S Lewis, Feb 27, 2006.

  1. S Lewis

    S Lewis

    May 23, 2005
    Charlotte, NC
    Are there any tube power amps (100-200 watts) that can be had for less than 500 dollars? :confused:
  2. I had a vintage SUNN 200s that I found for $300 it was plenty loud too.I think if you find one it prob. would not run over 500.I dont even know if these were intended for BASS but,trust me they are loud.
  3. K2000


    Nov 16, 2005
    Fender Studio Bass also comes in a head version (200 watts)
    Fender Bassman 135
    A used Ampeg V4 is in the 500 dollar range
    You may be able to get a Traynor YBA 200 used, within that budget
    Ebay saearch on 'tube bass', in the musical instruments category (and be patient).
  4. S Lewis

    S Lewis

    May 23, 2005
    Charlotte, NC
    will do! :)

    i'm basically just looking for a tube power amp to use with my POD XT's an amazing preamp, and adding some real tube flavor couldnt hurt, ya know?
  5. seamonkey


    Aug 6, 2004
    Carvin has Tube power amp TS100.

    You'll note on the same page that there's a TN100 preamp co-designed with Frank Gambale. Frank claims to play through SS power amps. Pick up the Carvin DVD to hear him play and his reason why he doesn't use tubes. His reasons would apply more to bass.
  6. Sound Chaser

    Sound Chaser

    Mar 19, 2005
    Lockport, NY
    Is that thing loud enough, though? I mean, to compete with a guitarist with a 100 watt tube half-stack and an extrememly loud drummer?
  7. seamonkey


    Aug 6, 2004
    Depends on how efficient the speakers are.

    Check out:
    Which can squeeze every last ounce of SPL's out of a driver.

    The "tube" sound comes from the preamp not the power amp. If you need more watts go for SS.
  8. tubster


    Feb 5, 2003
    Southwest Spain
    Get an older Traynor - YBA.....brilliant
  9. Quit spouting this BS. Anyone who's ever gigged with a tube amp knows that this is patently false. Take your crusade against tubes elsewhere.
  10. syciprider

    syciprider Banned

    May 27, 2005
    Inland Empire
    Visit local garage sales for that $300 SVT CL.
  11. ghindman


    Feb 10, 2006
    I wouldn't say patently false, just not completely accurate. A great deal of the bass tube sound comes from the pre - very few people drive their tube power stage to the point where the differences between tube and SS make much of a difference. If you're pushing the power stage to the point that saturation distortion/compression come out, then yeah, that makes a huge difference, but that's much more common in guitar applications than in bass applications. Is there still some difference between tube and SS power? Sure, but is the gain outweighed by the weight an maintenance issues that come along with tube gear? Not for a lot of people.
  12. syciprider

    syciprider Banned

    May 27, 2005
    Inland Empire
    Yeah I don't think I will ever hear my SVT's power tube distortion unless I really wanna piss my neighbors off.
  13. Plain Old Me

    Plain Old Me

    Dec 14, 2004
    I get overdrive from my 400+ when playing most venues; I also don't go through the PA and play the whole show with only my amp. I have not had to do any maintenance on it since I got it at the beginning of last summer- and I have had about a gig a week. That said, the Carvin tube power amp is a good choice at 100 watts, but if you want to spend just a little more, a Traynor YBA 200 can be had for about $600, and its 200 watts all tube. It is, however, a head, not a power amp.
  14. How about getting yourself a 5 watt guitar amp - single 6L6 or a 10 watter 2XEL34 - put in a small bass speaker AND put a direct box in parallel with the speaker - crank the little amp - run the direct to the PA or use a SS power amp to amplify to output of the cranked tube power stage.

    I plan on trying this soon.

  15. seamonkey


    Aug 6, 2004
    This is a great idea.
    I think you might have some problems with the speaker. You'll need to design a small cabinet that can handle being enclosed, and there will be problems with low frequency feedback into the mic.

    So you might want to look into speaker simulation, for example:
    You'd plug this into your little tube amp, and take the output off of 'IN1' and 'IN2' through an attenuator to run into the SS amp. Your little amp would see what looks like a speaker, and behave appropriately with all the tube/transformer behavior you'd expect. And your PA would get a good signal off this.

    I bet even with all the tube preamps available, that not a single one does it this way.
  16. I was not planning on using a mic at all - but I guess I could if I used and iso box. I was talking about using direct box like a Countryman or even a Behringer - both have padded high impedence inputs that are intended to used directly across the terminals of a speaker, in parallel to the speaker. Check out the data sheets. The speaker was simply to provide an appropriate load to the tube output stage and a tiny bit of extra stage volume.

    I could probably use any small bass cab of the appropriate impedence as the load and not bother spending cash on the attenuator.

  17. seamonkey


    Aug 6, 2004
    Oh - that would do it.
    Post how it turns out.

    You mean... Tubes aren't out to take over the world? Enslave us all, shackling us to gigantic Bias pots? Next thing you know, you'll be trying to convince us the Sansamp DOESN'T sound just like a completely MINT 69 SVT that's been cranking on full volume all day. I read Talkbass enough to know the whole tube shtick is a scam cooked up by the unholy alliance of Republicans, the religious right, and cranky old amp techs! :rolleyes: :help:
  19. :D
    On topic: I think you can probably find a used MESA/Boogie Buster head cheap. 200w, all tube.

    Slightly Off topic: I don't really know from experience, but from what I've been told the tube tone mostly comes from the power section. Bigger tubes = Bigger Saturation. I've also been told that preamp tubes are a bit overplayed in their importance...