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Amp woes

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Bassingdad, Dec 10, 2006.

  1. Bassingdad


    Dec 10, 2006
    My son plays and presently has a small amp. He is now in a band thats just starting and needs a more powerful amp so now i have to get as much info as to which ones are worth it. Whats a good one to get ie a combo amp and which ones to stay away from. He is still young so I don't want to buy something that need a truck to move it around and needs a truck to carry the money needed to buy it. :confused:
  2. Jiggybass


    Nov 15, 2005
    Sudbury, Canada
    Maybe something like a 200-300 watt head, with a small cab, like a 1x12, or a small 210. There are some pretty decent Roland, SWR, and Beringer combos available aswell, which are really easy to carry, and won't break the bank :)

    You can find many different brands that offer these cabs, and you could even buy used, to save money. That way you can get your son better gear, for less money.

    Although, what kind of music does he play? what kind of sound does he like? those are the main concerns when choosing amps.
  3. Daytona955i


    Feb 17, 2005
    Albany, NY
    Price range?
  4. Peavey makes great low cost combos.
  5. Bassingdad


    Dec 10, 2006
    He plays rock and heavy metal. As for cost I have no idea what a decent one is worth am new at the amp area. Easy to carry is something needed but needs the power for gigs. (he doesn't like being overpowered by drums)
  6. Daytona955i


    Feb 17, 2005
    Albany, NY
    Okay, but how much are you willing to spend, it makes a difference.
  7. maybe like the ashdown MAG series of combo amps?

    307 watts for 2x10 and up... for the 1x15 you will need an extension speaker to get the 307 full without it is 180 watts which should be and will be good for smaller shows how many guitarists are in this band? one? two?
  8. My kids are quite young, but whenever I make a foray into uncharted territory, I like to get as much info as possible.

    This link will provide you with more than enough to get you oriented, but will not necessarily tell you which to buy :


    You'll get a number of great answers to your question, but to narrow it down, we will need as much info as possible. The two that immediately popped in my head are : price range (already brought up), and are you willing to buy used?

  9. Bassingdad


    Dec 10, 2006
    nothing wrong with used and as for price I never really had one in mind, as I have been looking and the prices range all over and I don't really know what exactly he needs. There are 2 guitarist the band and as long as I don't have to take out a 2nd mortgage. Basically I would like to keep it under $800 until I am sure he will not bail.
  10. bassing dad check this out

    www.musicgoround.com best place for used gear etc if you dont already know
  11. Other, more informed individuals will throw in their two cents (and some of it will contradict mine)....but here's what I would do:

    First, I'd buy used. If he does bail...you can get more of your money back. If he doesn't and you've shopped well, then he still has some decent stuff.

    Second, I think separates (head+cabinet as opposed to a combo) are the way to go for someone younger (and presumably smaller). The kind of combo that can compete with two guitarists and a drummer will either weigh a ton, out price your limit, or both.

    This brings us to wattage. You'll find opinions on this that run the spectrum. I'm gonna say your son will be good with 300+ watts. There are guys here that won't leave home without 1000+ for the situation you describe. Persoanlly, I run 160 watts through 2 15's for a "full volume" practice. I can get by with 1 15 if only one guitarist shows up and he's not a moron.

    Now....what speaker configuration? There's a number of them, but price and weight take their toll. I'd stick with a 4x10 or 2 2x10's. Your son should get the volume and "punch" he needs to be heard.

    At any rate..those are my thoughts. There are some screaming deals to be had on this site and ebay....so recommending specific used equipment is kinda difficult.

    Personally, I'm a fan of SWR heads. The older ones can be had at criminally low prices on ebay and here in the classifieds. Cabinets are another story. You can get a pair of Aguilar 12's or Bag End 15's for $600 used...but this leaves you with close to squat for a head. Based on nothing more than the countless threads and reviews on them and the few times I've heard them live...I'd go with Avatar cabinets (new): www.avatarspeakers.com

    Sorry this is lengthy and rambling. Please take the following recommendations with a grain of salt. They apply to my tastes as a player and the products in my range of knowledge. Others will have differing views and may think that what I've stated here is total crap.

    My bottom line......

    Head: SWR SM-400/400s/500. Expect 400/420 watts @ 8/4 ohms in the 400 and something like 450/500 watts in the 400s & 500. Recent sales on ebay for this family of heads start at $288. Expect to pay about $350 for a nice example.

    Cabinet: pick something from Avatar. I'd go with the 410 neo. It weighs 65 lbs and should be all he needs. Not to mention that it's $421 after shipping. The 212 is another decent choice and it'll save a few more bucks. Your son's desired tone (if he knows what he wants...many of us don't) would be the deciding factor on the speaker configuration.

    At any rate...that slots you below $800 and should get your son stupid loud with quality components. Please be sure to check the classifieds on this site daily. There are some really great deals to be had. I hope someone else chimes in with a different perspective. Lastly...get the boy hearing protection.

  12. Warr Tapper

    Warr Tapper Banned

    Sep 17, 2006
    Can't tell you what to go with. Just get a combo with as many watts as possible and with as many speakers as possible. A single 15" speaker might not cut it. Just stay away from cheaper stuff like Behringer, Crate, Peavey. You get what you pay for. Good combos by Ashdown, Ampeg, Euphonic Audio, and Eden. What's your price range?
  13. lowrez

    lowrez no.

    Nov 27, 2004
    New Englandish
    This thread is going to get out of hand with suggestions, some good, some bad... all opinionated! Not to say this message isn't also. I'd probably suggest something like a "GK 400rb" head (power unit), these can be picked up on ebay for under 200 dollars and should be enough power for most stuff at this level. The cabinet... well I'd definitely pick that up local. If you don't want to have to haul much I'd probably consider a 2x10 or a 1x15 cabinet of the 4ohms variety (to get the most out of the head). There are tons of decent brands available that should fit the bill. (peavey, ampeg, even eden... if you buy used should fit the bill). I'd stay away from "brand new" inexpensive gear in favor of slightly used higher end stuff as you will get more mileage out of it and probably comparable resale to what you pay if you decide to quit, or trade up. You can have a decent portable rig for under 500 bucks imho....
  14. Espidog


    May 19, 2006

    Just wanted to second everything mike_v_s has just said. Sheer common sense.

    One other thought occurs to me, though, and maybe others might care to give their opinion on this: given that your son is into Heavy Metal, it might be worth looking for an amp with a tube pre-amp section, or the possibility of getting him a tube distortion effects unit?

    I guess it depends on whether he's after that kind of sound or not. There are plenty of HM bassists who prefer a cleaner sound. Food for thought, though....
  15. zazz


    Feb 27, 2004
    volume...to price...to weight ratio!!!:bassist:
  16. Freddels

    Freddels Musical Anarchist

    Apr 7, 2005
    Sutton, MA
  17. Bassingdad


    Dec 10, 2006
    Thanks to all replied, now comes the hard deciding.
  18. velvetphil

    velvetphil Supporting Member

    Feb 22, 2006
    Los Angeles, CA
    Ashdown MAG, if I may - VERY good for the price. For any price, really!
  19. will33


    May 22, 2006
    If you're looking at Avatar, I'd go with the 212, it's about a hundred bucks cheaper and will do everything he needs to do. The Ashdown MAG300 mentioned above is a pretty popular, good sounding head that goes for about the same as the cabinet. That'd be a new rig for around $600 plus shipping costs. If you need to sell it I'd expect to get around $400 back out of the deal provided it's still in good shape both in sound and cosmetics. Another option is the Carvin BRX212. Plenty of power, good speakers. It's a combo but it's built more vertically and has wheels on the back and a handle that pulls out like airplane luggage to move it around with. Either of those rigs or something similair should handle about anything he'll be doing in the next few years. If your not in a huge hurry I'd also recommend purusing the classifieds/craigslist/ebay for good used gear. Peavey's are plentiful and usually reliable, could find a pretty good amount of power there for not much $. Also look for used Gallien-Krueger 800rb's. Post some of your findings here, there's bound to be somebody whose either had one or heard one. I don't think a combo will cut it up against two guitarists and a drummer playing rock and metal. If you do find some you like I'd make sure they have the capability of plugging in a second speaker.

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