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Amp Question.....

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by ZenG, Apr 12, 2015.

  1. About combo amps.....

    I have tried quite a few combo amps and a while back bought a BA115 Ampeg. Which I thought sounded not too bad for what it is.

    I've tried quite a few others.

    But I've noticed on a lot of these amps you get pretty good bottom end and lows...but.....often the lows are either too "punchy' or they are "hollow' sounding.....

    (I'm playing an Ibby SR500 with D'addario flats......and my Jag SS has same strings.)...

    Lots of tone tweaks on the Ampeg and the basses. And I can get them to sound pretty good.

    But is there a combo amp that has bit more "solid" -sounding bottom end?

    Sweetly "solid" without being "punchy", "annoying" ..or "virtual warehouse air"?
  2. Combos tend towards punchiness because the cabinets aren't all that big. That keeps them portable, but there's not a lot of space for air to move. That's one reason an SVT 810 sounds so good: its a big, heavy, very rigid box with a lot of air space in it.

    As to finding the requirements you seek, that'll be up to your ears. I'm convinced that nobody hears stuff the way I do. I don't know if that makes me artistic or autistic.
  3. AER amp series have excellent reputations if you can afford them. Most combo amps are a series of compromises. It's one of the reasons that most of our contemporaries end up going with separates.
  4. Punchy, hollow sounding lows are due to strong upper bass peaking. This is likely intentional, an attempt at tone that draws attention or impresses in a short, shop-floor audition. It results from installing as large a driver as will fit on the baffle board, in a acoustically small volume. Now some players really like that tone, but others, after a short time home, discover that there is a lack of real low fundamentals, poor note definition and uneven response across the fretboard. It is a highly competitive market, and this is one of the ways the manufacturers try to stand out. Others include modeling, overdrive/distortion circuits and high power ratings.

    I recently was in the market for a compact, light weight combo for practice and small acoustic gigs. Other than AER, I did not find a commonly available combo to my liking, so I picked one with a solid amp and EQ, good build and light weight. I remedied the bass by replacing the driver and optimally retuning the vented cab. I first measured the TS parameters of the stock driver and tried retuning, as well as trying acoustic stuffing variations - both yielded 'some' improvement. But there was really no getting around the stock, high Qts driver.

    I suggest that you consider applying some acoustic insulation (dacron pillow stuffing works well) - just line the bottom, back and one side to start with. If you like what you hear, but find it still needs improvement, line another side. That may be all you need to do. If you have two ports, block one. also, try it sealed (jam some cloth tightly into each port)

    I find that the new Ampegs and GK's have improved over earlier versions in this respect.
  5. I have a BA115. Turn your bass up all the way (tone and volume), set the amp's EQ flat and the style knob on #1 then experiment with high gain/low master and low gain/high master.

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