Amp advice for oldies rock and roll

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by spacerust, Oct 9, 2011.

  1. spacerust


    Feb 9, 2010
    South Texas
    I just started playing bass again in an oldies covers band. Doing the 50's 60's thing. I picked up an Epiphone Ravoli bass reissue? so it's got that boom. Im thinking of getting a head and maybe a 15 cab and possibly 212 in case I need it. But not sure whay to look for. I should not have sold my aguilar sc500 and gs212 but I was playing guitar and didnt like to see it sitting there. So now I learned, dont get rid of good equipment. So any thoughts? Price range I was figuring about 400-500 for the head unless you know a good combo or setup I could try.
  2. Marton


    Sep 20, 2005
    Epiphone Ravioli ? :smug:
  3. Mystic Michael

    Mystic Michael Hip No Ties

    Apr 1, 2004
    New York, NY
    Prepare to see "Ampeg" mentioned again and again. Or "Fender Bassman" again and again.

    And if so, they may be right. Old school isn't really my thing, so I defer.

    However if it were me, I'd think outside of the box a bit. Get a Hartke LH1000 + an Aguilar DB 115 (or two :eek:).

    Add a P Bass with flats. That'll roust those senior rockers on a Saturday night... :smug:

  4. soulman969

    soulman969 Inactive

    Oct 6, 2011
    Englewood, Colorado
    Personally I love Ampeg Heads so my advice would be an SVT Pro III. As for what to run it through I guess that depends on what your looking for sound wise. You say the bass is boomy which if it's anything like those old EBO's I know what you mean. If that's the case I steer clear of 15"'s and get a 2x12" cabinet. Another option for the head would be a GK MB500 again with a 2x12" cabinet. Those would be my top choices.
  5. spacerust


    Feb 9, 2010
    South Texas
    I saw a used gk500 gold line at the local music store. I thought about that but haven't tried it out. On cl there is a guy selling a swr working mans 2004 pretty cheap. Ampeg and gk, I'll look into those. Yes, I picked up an epiphone ravioli reissue. Tried doing some rersearch on it but not too much info on them. I love the look and the sound is good. 212? I used a fender rumble this past Saturday night and it held well live but it was a open and outside. My cousin loaned me a marshall 60 watt bass amp but I didn't use it. Thanks for the suggestions.
  6. degroove


    Jun 5, 2002
    Wilmington, DE
  7. dhomer

    dhomer Commercial User

    Apr 9, 2009
    Hickory Corners, MI
    Owner, Gigmaster Soundworks, Auth. greenboy designs builder, MI
    I used to play in a couple oldies bands.. A lot of fun.. Play vintage music, howzabout a "vintage" amp? Check out the used market for Peaveys, Kustoms, Sunns.. 2-15's would pretty much get ya there..
  8. soulman969

    soulman969 Inactive

    Oct 6, 2011
    Englewood, Colorado
    The only big negative to the "older" gear is the weight. Those old 2x15"s weigh a ton compared to some of the more modern rigs. I've had my last hernia from lugging those around thank you.
  9. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG
    Totally loving my Ampeg PF350/PF115he rig. Soon getting a second PF115, too. Head's only $300, or you can get the PF500 with more wattage, deluxe EQ and extra features for $400.
  10. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Supporting Member

    I've BTDT. Any head that doesn't sound terribly bright will work.
  11. For my classic rock band I play a GK700RBII through an Avatar 210, or even an SWR WorkingPro 12, as we always have PA support. The sound guys do what they want with the sound anyway, so play what's easiest to carry (oldies bands tend to have oldies members--we have 7 out of 10 over 60 and light stuff like the newer Class D amps would be awesome.
  12. will33


    May 22, 2006
    I'll second this. The new portaflexes have a pretty classic sound, look nice on stage and benefit from more modern advances like more power and light weight. The amp flips down inside the cabinet for an easy one-piece carry. The pf350 and 115 should be enough for an oldies band. Can always get a second 15 if you need it.
  13. spacerust


    Feb 9, 2010
    South Texas
    Thanks for all the advice. I like the idea of having some light to carry cuz with the larger setups we will have pa support. Any modern amps with the vintage look?
  14. tedsalt

    tedsalt Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2010
    Kansas City
    Some info on the Rivoli - Rivoli - The Unofficial Epiphone Wiki

    For lightweight, try a Markbass F500 paired with a Epifani UL series cab. Their 310 is nice. The F500 head can be found used for about $500.
  15. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    I was in the Oldies business back in the early '70s. My band backed up the Shirelles, the Platters, and Chubby Checker when they came to the club where we were the house band for almost a year in a SE Massachusetts oldies dance club.

    I used a '55 P-bass, which I still have, and a 200w Marshall Major tube head. The speaker cabinet was an Acoustic 301 118. Big, heavy and certainly not vintage looking. Yet, I got nothing but complements from the artists, especially Shirley Austin, who was a complete pro, fine artist/musician/vocalist, and very attractive woman.

    My advice is to keep the tone musical, simple, not bright, not boomy, and not too loud. Very few people will notice your rig, but everyone will hear what you play—and that is the key. Study the styles and learn how to avoid modern sounding (British Invasion and later) stuff for the 50's tunes. Most of those ('50s) parts were played by studio pros who were only concerned with getting the "Call Back." They played what they were told, stuck to the charts or what was demo'd for them.

    Buy used gear. I have gotten the most complements from band members on my Genz Benz Shuttle 6.0 head. The Shuttle was about $400 used, and weights less than 4 lbs. I use it nearly every day.

    For cabs, I honestly think any good quality 210, 212, or 410 could work, depending on how much volume you need. That said, most bands I am in prefer my 4 ohm Epifani 410 to my other cabs, though I use a 210 for 50% of rehearsals. GB makes a nice light 212. Avoid Combos (IMHO)!!!

    Congratulation on that Epiphone. Please, post a pic! :D
  16. beans-on-toast


    Aug 7, 2008
    Great tone and value for the money. Everyone is whispering about it. The best kept secret in town.
  17. Tom Howland

    Tom Howland Supporting Member

    Feb 11, 2003

    Get a Genz Benz "Streamliner" Head, with a Schroeder 1515L
    4 ohm cab.
    Under 60 lbs. total, old school tone.
  18. jeff7bass

    jeff7bass Inactive

    Apr 9, 2009
    With that bass you might want to go with the Ampeg VR/210 mini stack. Good midrange presence (with the 2x10 cab) plus and solid, beefy bottom end.
    You can always remove mid-presence but adding it is another matter. Not having enough will make you disappear in a band mix.
    I would compare, with that bass, the Ampeg PF350/115 to the Ampeg VR 2x10 mini stack at a Guitar Center, then pick.

    I played the VR/210 with a 50’s Squire Vintage P-Bass and was floored by classic tone.
  19. spacerust


    Feb 9, 2010
    South Texas
    Although i was brought up listening to the oldies I have just re-opened my ears to a whole new aspect of the oldies bass lines.
  20. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG

    Hey Jim, I know Shirley very well. She's one of my favorites. Still looks and sounds great, too.

    Spacerust, truthfully, anything with a cab that's not too bright past 4 or 5k will work for you, but I really love that new Ampeg stuff. The Micro VR and 210av is also a great though lighter duty choice. But you turn that tweeter off in the PF115he or PF210he and they sound nearly identical to the old B-15 cabs, which is always a good thing ;)

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