amp & cab, new guy, new to bass

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by JohnnyDepth, Jun 20, 2020.

  1. JohnnyDepth


    Jun 20, 2020
    Sorry a million times over, I know this topic is a constant by new members on gear pages and I know it's redundant. BUT I know the typical responses, genre, budget, home or band, jock itch, ring worm? So I'll try to be as specific as possible.

    Genres: Hardcore, hard rock, (Helmet, Tool, Sabbath)
    Budget: head, $1,000 and under, cab(s) $1,000 and under
    Environments: Home studio to playing with drummer (heavy hitter, loud kit)
    Current gear: G&L L-2000, pile of pedals that I have for my guitars.
    Play style: limited finger use, chopped a finger off years ago and recently severed a nerve in another. Not slapping, mostly all picking.
    I would prefer a head and cabinet over a combo. Better/more options.

    I've seen the small amps from Darkglass and dig the size. All of my guitar amps are tube combos and I do love tube breakup, but pedals can be fine. I'm not touring or a pro, in fact I suck, but I love good tone to mask my sucking.

    Weight isn't too much of a factor, but I'm getting old and can't afford my back to blow out. So, light head, the cab weight is gonna be what it is. My Laney is a 212 combo, it's a pita to move, but not something I do much of.

    I only want to do it right the first time and not end up with a turd.
    I live very rural and there are no music shops around, so trying equipment is a weekend adventure. I buy pedals based on videos and reviews, sometimes it doesn't work out, but pedals are affected by the amp and player.

    I know what guitar amps sound like, I've played so many and know what to expect. Now bass amps... I'm screwed, but I'm confident that you good folk know what you're talking about. Can't ignore experience.

    So, you're in my shoes and have a good idea of the tone range, how much cash I can print, style of play, volume, the bass I'll be using, you're better than me. Strings are what they are, I play NYXL's or GHS Boomers on my guitars. Boomers will be on the bass.

    I hope I gave enough info and my sarcasm and poor jokes didn't make this unnecessarily painful for ya'll.

    Oh, here's a bonus that should help.
    I'm not trying to sound like a particular player, only fit in a certain area.

    So thank you and again, forgive me for doing this.
    MarkA and logdrum like this.
  2. Ampeg Portaflex PF800 & PF115HE cab
  3. Kro


    May 7, 2003
    New Jersey
    At your price point and for your needs, the world is your oyster. I'd get at the very least a 115, and maybe shoot for a 212 or 410 still if your drummer is particularly hard hitting.

    As far as your amp is concerned, probably any reputable class D amp with a respectable enough power rating will get the job done (500w+ is a good rule of thumb, but even a decent 300w amp will get very loud) If you like the sound of Darkglass, that may be one reason to choose them, but you could also pair a Darkglass preamp with a less expensive class D amp if you so choose.

    Mesa, GK, Ampeg - I mean, it's really hard for you to go wrong as long as you stick to brands with a solid reputation IMO, and there are a lot of them these days.
    lomo and JohnnyDepth like this.
  4. mmbongo

    mmbongo I have too many basses. Supporting Member

    I was going to say the same thing, but I would get two of the PF115 cabs for modularity. You'd still be $300 under budget with that setup and it would absolutely slay. Might not be THE lightest setup possible, but far from the heaviest and the price is right.
    Ed Byrnes, Guild B301 and JohnnyDepth like this.
  5. JeezyMcNuggles

    JeezyMcNuggles Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2018
    Santa Maria, CA
    I suck, but nobody really notices
    SVT7 Pro (1000w, tube pre amp, bells and whistles)

    Svt-212av or 610HLF (both killer, both under a grand) 610 gets louder but is bigger. 212 sounds better and is easier to transport.

    Neither is expandable with that amp though. Theyre both 4ohms and the 7pro runs @ minimum 4ohms. But, both would be great depending on what you want.
    JohnnyDepth likes this.
  6. Killing Floor

    Killing Floor Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2020
    Austin, TX
    Yeah, definitely another +1 for Mesa or GK as really packing punch for value. I'm partial to Mesa bout wouldn't dismiss GK if you prefer it. If you're playing in genres that are prone to loud rehearsals, loud gigs and given your budget I'd go to head/cab versus a combo. so you don't chase after guitarists and drummers for space.
    I know Ampeg rigs are great. But I'm loving less the weight. But if you don't mind heavy gear Ampeg is a good option.
    Bassdirty, MAXSPINRUN and JohnnyDepth like this.
  7. Killing Floor

    Killing Floor Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2020
    Austin, TX
    And thanks for sharing about the jock itch. Best of luck with that too.
    Bassdirty and JohnnyDepth like this.
  8. Gibson Victory

    Gibson Victory Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2019
    Ampeg for sure! SVT something, pick your poison. Tons of good used stuff on the market, should you choose that route. For this kind of money, you should not have any problem getting a good used SVT 4 Pro. The real deal for sure. Leave yourself some cab options, and that should not be a problem in this price range. A 4x10, with a 15 something on the bottom would work well. Actually there are all sorts of cabs that would be ok. For active players I always recommend a head that is a current run, still made unit, for various reasons.
    JohnnyDepth likes this.
  9. JohnnyDepth


    Jun 20, 2020
    Thanks guys. the suggestions will put me where I need/want to be no doubt, because I trust you more than myself.

    A 115 would probably be good for the house, keep the 410 at the drummer's. Don't need to blow the paint from the walls. I tend to crank amps, especially if I have access to a ton of speakers.

    I have zero brand loyalty, so anything is in play and I will certainly end up with something suggested above.
    Thanks for the guidance.
  10. Eddie LeBlanc

    Eddie LeBlanc

    Oct 26, 2014
    Beaumont, Texas
    Don't create no problem, won't be no problem.
    Bergantino is the best in the market.
    Bergantino Audio Systems

    I'd say find a used B|Amp and a dual 12" cabinet. That will cover anything you'll ever need.
  11. Matty Koff

    Matty Koff Inactive

    Aug 21, 2014
    Sounds like the Mesa TT-800 might be right up your alley, or the WD-800. Lightweight, solid construction.. made in USA and built to last imo. I'm running my WD-800 through an Avatar b410, but really wish I had the dough for a pair of the Subway 1x12 cabinets.

    The Subway series are capable of a 2 ohm load, so you can run up to four 8 ohm cabinets, or two 4 ohm cabinets, or one 4 ohm cabinet, though, it's still going to push 400w through a single 8 ohm cab.

    XLR out works great, has a ground lift switch, can run pre or post EQ signal, and can either be run at mic level or line level. I prefer my XLR vs micing my cabinet, that way there's no bleed from the drums in a recording situation. The D800+ gets a lot of love too.

    Personally haven't owned anything Ampeg or GK, so I can't speak for those, although they have their fans. Having had my WD-800 for a couple months now though, I am absolutely a fan of the Mesa Subway line and doubt I'll be shopping for another head for years to come.
    JohnnyDepth and MAXSPINRUN like this.
  12. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    May 24, 2006
    First things first: Welcome to TalkBass! Glad to have you aboard. You’re among friends. :)

    With a total budget of roughly $2K you’re not going to need to make many compromises. That’ll get you a some quality gear even at today’s prices.

    If you’re not gigging or required to haul stuff around there’s a ton of heavy older vintage used gear that has killer tone and is going for very reasonable prices these days since ‘lightweight’ has become the name of the game. You’ll see a lot of classic cabs and even full rigs finding homes in studios and venue house backlines. Once you set them up who cares what they weigh if they're not gonna be going anywhere, right?

    You could park a 4x10 at both your two spaces and shuttle a light bass head like a Mesa 800 back and forth.
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2020
  13. 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
    Are you planning on gigging or even jamming on bass with a live band (hoping all of us get to do gigs and jams again some day!)?

    Assuming "Yes," it seems like you should go for an expandable Darkglass rig.

    Get a powerful head and a good 8 ohm cabinet. Add a second identical cabinet for more convenience, and going to 11.

    Darkglass Alpha-Omega 900 - 900-watt Bass Head
    Darkglass DG112NE 500-watt 1x12" Bass Cabinet

    A pair of 112 or a pair of 210 cabs would be great. Honestly, don't pick cabinets based on driver size. A good 15 won't go lower than an equally good 12 which don't go lower than an equally good 210, etc. A vertical stack of two 210's will have superior horizontal dispersion compared to a cubic 410, and thus not sound like mud off axis. A stack of 112 or 115 cabs is fine, too.

    If a single 210, 112, or 115 does the job, put the money into your long term savings.

    Or investigate further, and get a Mesa D800 and a Barefaced super twin and be done: Barefaced Bass - Super Twin

    And as luve-ly luve-ly Ludvig van would say if he could, "Welcome to Talkbass!"
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2020
    BassNugget, JohnnyDepth and P_Robyn like this.
  14. bbh

    bbh Supporting Member

    Sep 27, 2011
    There are a couple of Wayne Jones rigs cheap in the tb classified ads. If you like high end fidelity, that’s a great choice. They can’t be beat.
  15. Eddie LeBlanc

    Eddie LeBlanc

    Oct 26, 2014
    Beaumont, Texas
    Don't create no problem, won't be no problem.
    BTW --- my rig. Berg B|Amp with two Schroeder cabs. A 12 PL (Single 12") and a 12-12L (dual 12" drivers with one 12" in a corner slot load)
    It can get loud and proud, and give tonal quality like most folks can only imagine.
    Bassdirty, JohnnyDepth and Remoman like this.
  16. MTN.bass72

    MTN.bass72 Supporting Member

    Jan 9, 2010
    Blue Ridge, Ga
    That's a decent budget...
    For just a hair more, contact an authorized builder of the Greenboy Audio Fearless/fearful cabs..
    Get either an F115, or a 15/6 built..
    Then pair it with, if you like tubes, the Mesa Subway WD800... There's a couple in the classifieds now for great prices..

    Either one of those cans will demolish a heavy handed drummer, easily with more to give... plus easy to move
    lomo, bbh and Kro like this.
  17. Kro


    May 7, 2003
    New Jersey
    I can attest to this. They aren't the lightest or easiest to move compared to cabs that are purpose built to be extremely small and light, but in terms of performance to size/weight, they're hard to beat.

    They will put you over your cab budget though, so I wasn't going to recommend them outright, but IMO it makes more sense to splurge on a good cab. Great inexpensive amps are much easier to come by. :thumbsup:

    Which side of PA are you on? There's an excellent authorized builder in Bucks county.
    MTN.bass72 likes this.
  18. MTN.bass72

    MTN.bass72 Supporting Member

    Jan 9, 2010
    Blue Ridge, Ga
    Perfectly said! I had trouble finding words... long week..

    Paul is awesome! He built the F210 that I had
  19. bherman

    bherman Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 30, 2009
    Grand Junction, CO
    You've got a good budget and for that kind of $$ you can get great quality as well as a lighter rig. Given your music style, I'l shade you towards a Mesa WD800 or a GK head (I'm not crazy about the tone of GK but for your style it would be a good choice). My recommendation for best cab for the $$ is RevSound - either their 212 or two of their 115s. Or even their 215. All are great cabs. Call David Luke, the builder-designer, tell him what your needs are, and he'll match you with the right cab(s).

    Bass Cabinets | RevSound
  20. MaxSpinrun

    MaxSpinrun Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 10, 2012
    Knoxville, Tn
    856E6252-18F5-4003-BB95-4BAA65EE541A.jpeg 0BA72745-A4B6-4D82-A58B-4EF4EA7FEC40.jpeg
    Yea, I’m with Matty, Mesa is hard to beat. Versatile, quality, and top notch customer service. I have the D800+, absolutely love it but I went with the Genzler BA15-3 Array cab. Light weight, VERY high performance. Deep tight clear cab, not muddy.
    Jim Carr and Matty Koff like this.