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Ampeg b2 vs. SVTIII

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by birminghambass, May 16, 2005.


  1. birminghambass

    birminghambass Supporting Member

    Sep 18, 2002
    Birmingham, AL
    Took home an SVT3 today to try out (my drummer manages a music store) and was less than impressed. After extensively A/B'ing it with my b2, I'm keeping the b2. The SVT had a beefier flat sound with a little more character, but volume wise I felt the b2 projected better. I couldn't get a fat sound out of the SVT without engaging the Ultra low switch which sucked alot of the power out of it. I also liked the sound of the Ultra high switch in but man, it adds a ton of hiss. I then put my Sansamp in front of the b2 and it blew away the SVT. Considering the price difference I think it's a no-brainer. Anybody else dissappointed in the SVT3 or am I the only one?
     
  2. incognito89x

    incognito89x ♪♫♪ ♪ ♪ ♫&#983

    Sep 22, 2002
    Royal Oak, Michigan
    I dunno about the SVT as Iv'e never tried one but I love the sound of the B2R with the SansAmp running. Great fat tone.
     
  3. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD
    In that case, you'd probably be better off with just an RBI with a poweramp.
     
  4. Simball

    Simball

    Mar 26, 2005
    Portland, Oregon
    Years ago I ordered a B2 from thoroughbred music in florida and by mistake they shipped me an SVT3Pro. I was quite happy about that because I think I payed maybe 400 bucks for it. I used that thing for at least 4 or 5 years (gigs, jams, studio) and it never let me down but I was never really excited about the sound I was getting from it. It got loud enough for me but sounded sort of dull so I eventually got rid of it. I'm not saying it's a crappy amp but you don't get that hi-fi sound like an eden or SWR , it also sounds nothing like a fat SVT tube head.
     
  5. 8mmOD

    8mmOD

    Mar 20, 2005
    USA
    I endorse & use Tech 21 pedals, Eminence loaded cabs, EMG pickups, Jim Dunlop picks & Ernie Ball Strings, BC Rich Basses.
    In my experience, its much better to NOT use the ultra low on the 3 pro. I am convinced the "ultra low syndrome" is 90% of the reason why it has a bad rep about not being powerful. The ultra low is only good for low level listening as far as I am concerned. It is much better use the eq and boost the lows & hi (rather than scoop the mids) and keep the mids more flat (the infamous "smile" eq). The mids are what makes the tone stand out so you do not want to suck them ALL out like the ultra low button does. As far as the ultra high, the SVT cabs have a horn attenuator, I dont know what cabs you have, but i would barely turn up the horn on mine when using the ultra hi button. I always liked the sound of the 3 and I agree it will never sound like an SVT tube head on its own. But using Varidrive pedal on the front end with the gain on a lower setting would make mine growl nicely. http://www.smfamps.com/sib.htm
     
  6. Jerrold Tiers

    Jerrold Tiers

    Nov 14, 2003
    St Louis
    I think that is correct...... and ultra-low DOES reduce mids as well as boost lows.

    I kinda wish we could get away from it and some other things.......it's one of those "Ampeg signature features" that have *consequences*.....

    I was blaming the "tube drive", but I like your explanation better..... easily explains "mud", "boom", and "no tone" complaints all at once.
     
  7. 8mmOD

    8mmOD

    Mar 20, 2005
    USA
    I endorse & use Tech 21 pedals, Eminence loaded cabs, EMG pickups, Jim Dunlop picks & Ernie Ball Strings, BC Rich Basses.
    Thats funny (not in a ha ha way ;) ), I think the tube drive is what "makes" the tone on the 3 pro... it was always all the way up on mine. I don't dislike the 3 pro... or shall I say I was never dissappointed with it. I think its a really good amp, but its not the best one for my style. I also understand why the sansamp in front of the B2 would sound good, I am pretty sure I know the tone you (birminghambass) are going for & I think its possible to get that tone from a 3 pro if its dialed right- but you won't get "grind" from a 3 on its own.
     
  8. johnvice

    johnvice

    Sep 7, 2004
    How are other 3pro users "dilaing" in this tone ?
     
  9. Jerrold Tiers

    Jerrold Tiers

    Nov 14, 2003
    St Louis
    If you dial it down, the unit gets less loud.

    The way it was labeled it looked like some sort of distortion effect "added". So some people simply left it down, saying to themselves, "i don't want a lot of distortion, I'll turn down the fuzztone"...................
     
  10. 8mmOD

    8mmOD

    Mar 20, 2005
    USA
    I endorse & use Tech 21 pedals, Eminence loaded cabs, EMG pickups, Jim Dunlop picks & Ernie Ball Strings, BC Rich Basses.
    yep, and the reality is thats exactly opposite of what it does. "tube gain" probably wasn't the best name for the feature.

    Here are my tips for dialing in a 3 pro- it works for me & maybe it will for you.

    1. Turn tube gain to 10
    2. Do not depress any buttons (unless you bass is REALLY hot- use the pad)
    3. Adjust the input gain so it flashes only during the loudest passages (when you are playing the loudest)
    4. Adjust the eq Knobs (bass, treble, etc) until you think it sounds best. I preferred the #4 setting for the mid select.
    5. Finally boost the bass & treble on the graphic eq. For me the "smile" eq is what made its tone sound like an ampeg. But as I said before, don't scoop all the mids, add in the bass & highs.

    Another tip is when you think you are maxed out on volume, the last eq slider is a volume control- turn it up.

    You can get the amp sounding good & very loud without it farting out but you just need to make small adjustments, step back & listen, then adjust more until you are happy. I would get it "just" into the fart zone and then back off a little. If you need more of the really high frequencies, turn up the horn in your cab or use the ulra hi button, but the ultra hi can be harsh with too much of the horn added in.

    Its really not that hard to dial it in if you have a good starting reference & remember the 3 pro is not a "growling" beast like the all tube SVT's, it's pretty clean sounding- a lot like an SVT before you really get it hot. All right I am done blabbing about the 3 pro, I hope this info helps someone.
     
  11. incognito89x

    incognito89x ♪♫♪ ♪ ♪ ♫&#983

    Sep 22, 2002
    Royal Oak, Michigan
    Well I got a chance to try out an SVT-III today. I think the sound was a bit better than the B2R. It sounded a little fuller and a little richer.
     
  12. birminghambass

    birminghambass Supporting Member

    Sep 18, 2002
    Birmingham, AL
    UPDATE:
    Took my 3pro to the shop last week. There was a problem with the preamp tube wiring. Tech fixed it, then popped in 2 new tubes. The result is a MUCH punchier, warmer sound.
    I got this used and apparently had never unleashed its true potential due to this problem. Now side by side with my B2 there is no comparison. The 3pro has a fuller sound with more tonal character. Really makes the B2 sound bland and lifeless.