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Amp suggestions for Berg HT322

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by BrendanVlass, Mar 10, 2013.

  1. BrendanVlass


    Mar 9, 2013
    Austin, TX
    I recently picked up a Bergantino HT 322 cabinet. It is rated at 800w at 4ohms. Beautiful cab.

    I am currently using an Ashdown EVO II 500w (1000 peak), with 4 ohm min. load. It sounds great, but the amp is pretty beat up (and [mythically?] underdrives the cabinet) and I am starting to consider finding something new and better fitting for this great cabinet.

    Any suggestions?
  2. Mystic Michael

    Mystic Michael Hip No Ties

    Apr 1, 2004
    New York, NY
    Loads & loads.

    What kind of tone & frequency response do you favor? Willing to consider a "lead sled", or is Class D/SMPS the only option for you?

    Etc., etc., etc...

    Offhand, I'd suggest a Carvin B2000. But that's largely because that amp will deliver up to 1,300 watts into 4 ohms - which will give you the kind of real headroom that a primo cab like that really deserves... :cool:

    Other options: Genz Benz GBE 1200, Mesa Boogie M9 Carbine, Gallien Krueger 1001RB-II.

  3. BrendanVlass


    Mar 9, 2013
    Austin, TX
    Tone wise, I'm seeking versatility. I have a very dynamic Bungle/Zappa-esque project, Muchos Backflips! in which I regularly use a green Russian Big Muff, MXR Bass Octave Deluxe, sometimes a EHX MicroSynth and can get quite loud. I also have a jazz gig that alternates electric (with effects on solos) and upright, as well as country/folk/bluegrass pick up gigs.

    Basically, I need one rig that can handle it all.
  4. Jim C

    Jim C Is that what you meant to play or is this jazz? Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2008
    Bethesda, MD
    I've had an HT322 for years but never use distortion and play R&B / rock, so maybe not helpful.
    I asked Jim awhile back about amps he thought might work for my application, vs my tonal goals, vs what I owned at the time.
    Regarding an SVT - He said he could see that working; I say the bottom can get out of hand if care is not taken on the bottom end in some rooms. At the moment, it is my reference standard and kills with the clean tone (with growl when pushed) I like
    Pre-power amp - Has worked very well with a Yamaha PB-1 or SVP pres's; the Yamaha could be a great choice for you
    MB LMII - Sounded very good although sterile some times; not my favorite
    TH500 - I have not gigged with this combination but sounds good at home; this amp sounds good with everything
    SVT-3Pro - I tried to like this amp but it did not work for me
    Trace Elliot SMX350 - Clean and loud but never loved it
    V4B - Also beautiful tube sound but not enough power

    BTW - He mentioned that both he and some customers liked the Ashdown heads although I can't remember which models.
    Does the horn sound good with distortion?
  5. BrendanVlass


    Mar 9, 2013
    Austin, TX
    Thanks! I have no complaints about the Ashdown I presently use, I just do not trust it in the long haul due to my own irresponsibility with it over the past years. I plan to use it as long as I can, but want to begin considering (and saving) for something else.

    The horn sounds great with distortion, but I did have to cut the tweeter back to -6db.
  6. chadds


    Mar 18, 2000
    DB-750 was a fave on that cab.
  7. +1

    But you might have to try hard to get that amp to sound bad. :p

    I would recommend the OP check out the Aguilar TH-500, or maybe a TH pedal driving his choice of power amp.
  8. I gigged the modular version of the HT322 for quite a while. Great cab.

    I hear this cab as big down low, very little low mid bump (i.e., more bigger sounding that punchy), VERY smooth relaxed mid mids and upper mids, and a VERY high fi top end.

    I always found (especially in your case of using effects) that a head with good control of the deep low end, and some brightness built in (or capability of dialing in) in the upper midrange, with also some good control of the upper treble, really resulted in a great sounding rig.

    My favorite head with that cab was the Markbass F500. Not massive power, but a really nice voicing. It is no longer on the market though.

    If the above makes sense to you, I would recommend either the Genz Genz Shuttle Max 9.2. (plenty of oomph for that cab, massive EQ capability, and 'tight and bright' out of the box) or the TecAmp Puma500 (or 900 if you really need the wump (similar voicing to the F500, and the low mid and upper mid fixed controls are voiced perfectly for adding a lot mid bump or dialing in some upper mid presence).

    I would guess the GK MB800 would also KILL with that cab if you want a wider tonal footprint with a more aggressive grind to the top end.

  9. BrendanVlass


    Mar 9, 2013
    Austin, TX
    Thank you everyone. Keep them coming!
  10. David A. Davis

    David A. Davis Supporting Member

    Apr 5, 2008
    Summerville, SC
    You might shoot Greg at RocketMusic a PM. He owns this cab as well as an NV610, and of coarse he is a Berg dealer. If member serves me, i think the last conversation i had with him he had done comparisons with the GB Streamliner 900 and a DB751 between the 2 cabs and said the HT322 seemed to play nicer with the Streamliner. If you check the RocketMusic thread you may stumble across some sound samples.
  11. I would not recommend either of those head with the HT322 myself (especially if the OP is using effects). Both those heads combined with the HT322 fall under my defintion of 'too much of a good thing'... fat, wide, deep, full down low, but too relaxed in the midrange, with the EQ not providing much control on either of those amps to 'punch it up and/or brighten it up' while controlling the upper treble response.

    IMO though. If you want 'fat, smooth, creamy, relaxed', the Streamliner would work pretty nicely. That tone profile always tended to get me in trouble in busy mixes and difficult rooms.

    Another amp for the OP to consider if he likes that tone of his current amp, is possibly the Thunderfunk 750a or the current 800b. Controlled low end, lots of EQ power, and a bit 'warmer and more organic' than either the Puma or the Max 9.2.... lots of warm, organic midrange like that Ashdown amp. Pricey though!
  12. chris lykins

    chris lykins Supporting Member

    Dec 4, 2004
    phoenix az
    I still have a HT322 and agree with KJungs responses. The Mesa offerings, GK fusion, and ashdown evo all sound good. The aguilar db750 sounds good with brighter basses as well. The GB streamliner sounds Ok but a little lifeless. I think the cab does best with amps with some midrange character and the ability to control the sub lows.
    Its a great cab but a PITA to move given its a heavy square!
  13. Daywalker


    Apr 13, 2005

    By far my most favorite rig I've ever owned...
  14. BrendanVlass


    Mar 9, 2013
    Austin, TX
    So, my Ashdown fried at my first rehearsal with my new Berg. Learned it was due to some shoddy work I had done about 2 years ago. Optimistic about its return from the shop, that is more that qualified to handle the repairs.

    Question: my Ashdown EVO II is a 500w amp, can I bridge this head to another power amp so I can push my 800w Berg like it needs to be pushed?
  15. BrendanVlass


    Mar 9, 2013
    Austin, TX
    Checking the Berg out with a Genz Benz GBE 600 at my jazz gig tonight. I'll post my thoughts on the night.

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