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Ampeg B-2R Stack or Hartke 3500/410XL

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by StartingLineBass, Jun 20, 2004.

  1. StartingLineBass


    Jul 24, 2002
    I need to upgrade my amps. I will have around a 1000.00 limit and I've narrowed it down to this Ampeg B-2R package or the Hartke 3500 head and I'd put a hartke 410XL cab to go with it.

    Now I love the classic SVT Ampeg tone, so I'm not sure if the B-2R can come close. Basicially, I need something that has lots of volume and good tonal versatility. But Id still probably use a SansAmp. And I need something that can last me awhile.

    I play a treblely yet bassy jbass tone with a pick in a VERY loud emocore band.

    Ampeg B-2R Package

    Hartke 3500 head
    Hartke 410XL cab
  2. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    The first thing that caught my eye was "plenty of volume". Unless the BSE410HLF is a very, very efficient cabinet, I doubt that the Ampeg rig will have the plenty of volume that you're seeking.

    The B2R is a great sounding amp, but really seems to lack power (the most common complaint that I've read here and personally experienced (with my former SVT-350H, same amp in a head cabinet)).

    On the other hand, most people seem to describe the Hartke as having plenty of power.

    I had never played through a Hartke head until recently when I ran a 3500 through a couple of Hartke cabinets, the 2.5XL and the 4.5XL. I generally don't like graphic EQs and left the Hartke's disengaged. I really liked the sound of the amp through the .5XL cabinets (with the 5 in. midrange driver). It was deep, warm and full.

    I have a 4.5XL cabinet and have found it to be pretty efficient compared to an 8 ohm Avatar B212 one one test and also a SWR Goliath II Jr. on the other (which was a 4 ohm cabinet).

    Given the two choices that you've presented, I'd go with the Hartke. But your ears really need to be the judge.

    Good luck and have fun!
  3. josh_m


    May 5, 2004
    Davie, Fl
    As much as I love Ampeg the 3500 has really impressed me, but I would be wary of buying a cab without hearing it first, especially one with aluminum cone drivers since the sound of them is very love/hate. I say check out some used 4x10" cabs in the same price range, as you may be able to find someothing that you like more. Just be sure you try out the XL series before you buy (Sam Ash sells them but I don't suggest buying from them.)
  4. I was going to hold back on saying this but I guess I'm not the only one who feels that the Ampeg B2r isn't the loudest 350w amp around. I haven't tried the Hartke amp but that may be the way to go for more volume.
  5. K-Frog


    Feb 6, 2002
    Camden, AR, USA
    I've read so many posts about the Ampeg B@R being underpowered that I now believe it. I wouldn't buy one. OTOH, I've heard that the hartke 3500 is a loud and pretty reliable head. I have never wanted the Ampeg, but have several times considered the Hartke.
    I think I would also consider a used SWR 350 of any vintage as well.

  6. chiplexic


    Apr 21, 2004
    I would also consider for lots of power,efficientcy and reliability the Peavey 450MAX or formally called NitroBass amp. Played one in store to try out a bass and was impressed. Sturdy, controls had quality feel when you turned them and everyone knows their reliable history.
  7. Hurley


    Feb 12, 2004
    Cape Cod, MA
    Ahem. :D

  8. K-Frog


    Feb 6, 2002
    Camden, AR, USA

    I hope SLB is paying attention. You guys look like neighbors.
  9. wblaze


    Apr 26, 2003
    Boston, MA
    Think about getting the Hartke head with the Ampeg cab! Like others have said, the B2-R probably won't be loud enough unless you run it with a 4 ohm cab, or 2 8 ohm cabs. I've owned the Hartke 3500 and it was always plenty loud. I've had both Ampeg and Hartke cabs as well and prefer the mellower Ampeg to the aluminum cones on the Hartke.
  10. StartingLineBass


    Jul 24, 2002
    Thanks, well I'm defiently going with the hartke 3500, and Im going to try it out with different cabs at both sam ash and guitar center.
  11. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    As you narrow your cabinet choices down, don't forget that both GC and Sam Ash have trial periods so that you can take the cabinet home and use it with the band, etc. GC is still 30 days on new gear, 15 days on used and Sam Ash is 15 days for both. Take advantage of this as cabinets can/will sound quite different in the store than where you're going to use them.

    Also, keep an open mind about used cabinets too...they're quite a bit cheaper and you can find ones that are in very nice condition and even more that work perfectly but aren't quite as pretty. Those can be had a bargain prices.

    Good luck!!!