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Ampeg 8x10 vs. 4x10?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Lex Slade, Mar 4, 2014.

  1. Lex Slade

    Lex Slade

    Jul 16, 2013
    For years my ideal amp has been an Ampeg 8x10. I started going to a lot of punk and hardcore shows in college and it seemed like almost every bass player had one, and I loved the sound coming out of them. About a year ago I switched from guitar to bass in a band and I've had to settle for a crappy 50 watt practice amp in the meantime.

    However, last week we began renting out a rehearsal space, complete with rental amps and drums. In the room when we got there was an Ampeg 8X10 cab with a Hartke head. I plugged in and instantly fell in love. We can rent these amps whenever we want, but if we ever get serious it'd be best for me to buy a good amp of my own.

    So my question is this: Would there be a dramatic drop in quality between an Ampeg 4x10 and an 8x10? The 8x10 is my ideal, but transporting it looks to be a pain and I don't have the storage space, so I'd more than likely have to look into getting a 4x10.
  2. Helaskold

    Helaskold 100% Mediocre

    Jul 22, 2012
    Austin, TX
    A 410 would be fine for almost every situation. Invest in one of those and a good DI and you will covered for the typical venue.
  3. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    The SVT 410he uses the same speakers and is built approximately the same size as half an 810e, so no, there's no drop in quality that I can perceive, except the bigness of the 810e does make it sound bigger and bolder, as bigger is always better for bass. Just turn the tweeter off and it's basically half of an 810e. The SVT 410hlf, however, is a different animal entirely. It goes super duper low and sounds quite different, although it does have that Ampeg vibe. But if you love the 810e, the SVT 410he is the cab to get for same thing only smaller.
  4. Gaolee

    Gaolee Outta my way! I'm caffeinated! Supporting Member

    If you have the ability to haul an 810, think about geometry for a moment. An 810 is like dealing with a hand truck. Pretty easy. A 410 is like dealing with a half pallet of bricks. A PITA! Between the two, I would go for an 810 unless there was a cost constraint purely for the ease of moving it. I realize it is counterintuitive that a smaller cabinet would be harder to move, but you have to bend over to move a 410. Getting it up and down stairs is a back breaker. An 810 is all geometry working from a standing position. It's a back saver.

    There's my opinion, and it is worth exactly what you paid for it.
  5. Remember that an ampeg 410HE will only go down to 8ohms where a 410HLF will go down to 4ohms.
  6. Lex Slade

    Lex Slade

    Jul 16, 2013
    I saw a video on Youtube comparing an 8x10 and a 4x10, and the guy said that the 4x10 he had was actually better at sending out low frequencies. This is something I particularly like - I play in a sleaze metal band with a bit of a punk edge, and I like my tone to be punchy and bright. The Hartke head I used on the Ampeg 8x10 last weekend had something like an 8 or 12 band EQ that allowed me a lot of midrange control to get that punch, but it also had a low pass knob that could also increase the lower frequencies without muddying the sound. I only had the amp's volume up to 1-and-a-half and I felt like I was getting seasick from the rumble this thing gave (The guys in the band loved it, though - The drummer told me that I should be making the glasses at the bar shake when we play out). If I can get that from a 4x10 then that might be the amp for me.

    And Goalee, I'd ideally love to have an 8x10. The problem is just transportation and storage. I remember when I was in college hearing the guys in bands talk about having to rent a van just because the bass amps took up too much room. I live in an apartment in Brooklyn, and so space is always an issue. And I don't own a car, and all the guys in my band have sedans. I'd rather have something small that's easier to store than a big amp that sounds great but is impossible to lug around.

    I could always get this :smug: http://www.ampeg.com/products/classic/microvr/
  7. tobias3469

    tobias3469 Supporting Member

    Sep 28, 2013
    West Los Angeles
    8x10 is great if you're playing a huge venue. I've found 4x10 sounds more focused and punchy in most situations. And it's still plenty loud!
  8. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    He might have been talking about the 410hlf, not the 410he. The 810e goes just a tiny bit lower than the 410he, not really enough to notice as far as I'm concerned. For the 810e sound, the 410he is the one you want.

    I use two of those cabs on a pretty regular basis. They're medium duty cabs and two of them won't get as loud as a 410he, and their low end isn't quite as strong (a little bass boost takes care of that for me, though), but they sound surprisingly good and are plenty loud enough for my needs.
  9. If space and transport is an issue, I'd get two 8ohm 1x12s.

    This coming from a guy who owns a vintage SVT head and 810 cab, as well as a 410 cab.

    The 410 sounds great w/ my SVT, but the 810 is UFB!

    The 810 is, as someone said, easier to move around and transport provided you have vehicle space. Why? Because I never really need to lift it.

    Hand truck vs. pile of bricks sounds about right.
  10. Masher88

    Masher88 Believe in absurdities and you commit atrocities

    May 7, 2005
    Cleveland, OH
    Stack 2-4x10he's and voila! Ampeg SVT 8x10! Each separate cab is 8ohms so both together runs at 4 ohms just like the "fridge". You can put 2-4x10 cabs in most cars unlike an 8x10 that needs a truck or van. For small gigs, only bring 1 cab...for bigger or outdoor shows, bring both! I've seen used 4x10he's on Ebay for $3-400.
  11. I used the 810e for over a decade, currently using the 410he. I got the 810 when my bandmates were using 412 guitar rigs. Now they have 212 rigs (5150 212 & orange dual terror & 212) the 410 balances just fine. depending on the stage situation I set up my rig differently. the 410he has removable wheels and you can actually remove just the two rear wheels and the cab will tilt up some. On shallow stages where my rig is literally right behind and the 410 would be firing towards my knees I stack my 410 ontop of my rack which makes it about the same height as the 810e. Really onstage the only time Id rather use an 810 is if its an outdoor show, or if the stage is so massive my rigs like 30 feet away. Gigs like those are so rare for me I can normally use a friends 810e or even rent one for those gigs.

    The one thing I caution people about with the 410he is remember its an 8 ohm cab. If you hook it up to a 350 watt @4 ohm solid state head the 410he will only get around 200W with the amp running @ 8 ohms. So basically I'd recommend a head that would do a good job pushing an 810 to get the best sound out of the 410he.

    Attached Files:

  12. petergales


    Dec 29, 2009
    Leeds UK
    I used an Ampeg 610HLF and it was a great cab. Very portable and much better than the 410HLF I had before it.
  13. jorby


    Feb 25, 2014
    Prescott, Arizona
    This is the right idea. I personally like to have a a single 15" or 18" cabinet on the bottom and have never liked the way the 8x10's sounded. Now, I have 2 4x10 boxes, a 1x15 and a 2x10, so when I play I bring what I need for different venues. If I want to try and be cool, I can set it all up and have a huge, tall, double-stacked rig. My favorite setup has actually ended up being the 1x15 and 2x10 together, which is what I run in most places big or small. Not as tall and mighty as the coffin but much more functional for crisp, punchy tone. My whole band runs in ears though so we are pretty quiet as far as stage volume.
  14. Lex Slade

    Lex Slade

    Jul 16, 2013
    Alright, so it sounds like a 4x10 would be fine for my needs. I'm going to wait before I seriously consider getting a new amp, but it's always best to do some research beforehand.

    Also, is it normal to develop withdrawal symptoms after playing a really nice amp? My Fender 15B is fine for bedroom practicing but I need my fix of some Ampeg!
  15. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Certainly is normal!
  16. Gaolee

    Gaolee Outta my way! I'm caffeinated! Supporting Member

    Yep. There's a reason I lug around battleship anchor sized rigs.
  17. Slpbass81


    Dec 16, 2010
    Orlando, FL
    Endorsing: GHS Strings

    I 100% agree with this. Watch Ampegs video on how to transport an 8x10. It's easier to load it into your car alone then the 4x10.