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Amp Dilemma -- power amp with B2R?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by tbass-chicago, Mar 23, 2006.


  1. tbass-chicago

    tbass-chicago

    Oct 11, 2005
    Chicago, IL
    Hi,

    I have an Ampeg B2R I bought used. Everyone loves the sound, but I always have to play with the volume cranked on both the amp and bass, so when I need more volume, it isn't there.

    I thought about getting another cabinet (I'm currently using an 8Ohm Avatar 2x10NEO), but then my stage footprint goes up. I'm trying to stay small.

    So I was thinking of getting a QSC RMX850 or a Crown XLS402 power amp and running the B2R into that. But then I'm thinking: a B2R and QSC power amp in the same rack -- heavy.

    So, I'm wondering -- should I just bite the bullet and get a heaftier amp, like an eden WT800 or a Yorkville XS800, or is the power amp solution the best way to go. Anyone using a poweramp with a B2R?

    Thanks!
    Tom
     
  2. snappytom

    snappytom

    Aug 17, 2005
    ChicagoLand
    I have a B2 (bit older than the B2R, basically the same) and run it thru a 210 and a 115, both of which are 8 Ohm cabs. Sometimes when rehearsing I just use the 210 and the B2 is limited to 200 watts. At 4 Ohms (two 8 Ohm cabs) you can draw the full power of 350 watts.

    Before getting a power amp you should get another 8 Ohm cab and get the most wattage out of the B2R (an Avatar SB112 would be nice). If you went from the B2R to a power amp, the B2R would essentially be used as a preamp only.

    After owning my current rig for over a year, here are my (and others) findings and observations.
    - The B2 head series from Ampeg is solid and reliable with good tone, but is a quiet 350 max watts.
    - According to Ampeg, the best way to run the B2 (and B2R) is with the master volume full throttle (run mine at about 80%) and then controlling your volume thru the preamp. Sounds like you are doing something like this already.
    - A 210 at 200 watts is marginal with a drummer. If playing on a concrete floor (slab or basement) it will get lost if the drummer is loud. It will do much better if it is shaking the house by sitting on a wooden floor.
    - The B2 has "that Ampeg tone", which is great. But over time you will hopefully get the chance to try other amps. You may discover that you can get "that" tone plus a whole lot more from some other manufacturers.
    - We play pubs and smaller venues, but we like to play fairly loud. The B2/210/115 setup is plenty for this. Did a much larger party tent last weekend and had full PA support, used the B2/210/115 as a stage monitor, and aside from rumbling the stage floor, I felt like it was getting lost.

    If you are unhappy with the B2R I would just get another amp and move on. I myself am migrating to a Genz Benz GBE600. The B2 is weak when compared to it.
     
  3. tbass-chicago

    tbass-chicago

    Oct 11, 2005
    Chicago, IL
    I would have to say that your experiences and feelings about the B2R mirror mine. Is it great for sending a feed to the board? Yes, and I get a lot of compliments from the sound guy. But I also find that, on-stage, it gets lost and I'm guessing. I also feel that the higher clarity in the notes is lacking, but I am willing to blame the cab for this (I actually like my Avatar, but I've never A/B'd with another cab to compare it to an ampeg or aggie cab).

    Last night I went and tried out a Yorkville XS800H at a local store. It was more watts, yes, but I was in a small store and kept it low. What I noticed was a clarity in the notes even with a thickness in the tone, not to mention many more tonal options. I am probably going to pick one up today, unless I can find a good reason not to.

    Thanks for your great response!
     
  4. snappytom

    snappytom

    Aug 17, 2005
    ChicagoLand
    I find that the B2 does well feeding to the board. Nice and quiet, never had a problem with that end of it.

    Looks like we occupy the same general space in the Western Suburbs. Not Them seems to have standing gigs at Harrah's and CIP ..... good deal, looks like you have an established band.

    We are just starting out having played 4 gigs since December. We try and hit it about every 5 weeks now. (www.sarcasticsaints.com) Maybe we will cross paths someday.
     
  5. TheChariot

    TheChariot

    Jul 6, 2004
    Boston, MA
    For a year I ran a B2R as the preamp driving an RMX1450 into a 410/115 stack. The B2R alone was simply not enough to drive all of those drivers, and the RMX was a $400 solution. I created a 900Watt monster:bassist:

    Tonally, it was no worse than running the B2R in its own. In fact, the character of my speakers stood out more because they were so underpowered before.

    It'll work fine. Most of the question lies within your finances.
     
  6. stringsmith

    stringsmith

    Apr 7, 2005
    I just purchased a b2 48 for a backup rig. I have it coupled with a swr 210 I only gigged with it twice both times on quiet dinner music gigs but it has a decent tone over all. the graphic EQ is not to versitile but it is a good backup for my Redhead which is fried and in the shop. I was suprised to see that you should run the master volume at full throttle It seems like the 4 8inch drivers in mine would suffer from that.
     

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