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Ampeg SVT Classic - opinions please

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by bassboomer, Mar 18, 2005.


  1. bassboomer

    bassboomer

    Mar 18, 2005
    Hi,

    I am new to this Forum, although have been playing Bass for more than 20 years now. I am presently lookingto buy my next and last Rig ( hopefully ) for the next 15-20 years. I am tempted to go towards an all Tube Amp and wants to receive your input on the Ampeg SVT Classic head which pushes 300 watts of power.

    I am about an aggressive Tone with some overdrive underlying a la Chris Squire ( I already play Rickenbacker Bass ).

    I want to know the pros and cons of the Ampeg SVT Classic from your experiences for Tone, reliability and performance.
     
  2. Plain Old Me

    Plain Old Me

    Dec 14, 2004
    Though I play pretty much only tubes these days, I didn't like the new SVT-CL in the store. However, I think it was because the cab, not the head, and it was one of the selector things so I couldn't try out a non-ampeg cab and most of the cabs didn't even work...
     
  3. illidian

    illidian

    Jul 2, 2004
    Chances are you won't want to haul an all-tube amp in fifteen or twenty years (considering you have been playing for twenty years).

    Let's just say you started playing bass at age twenty, twenty years later you're forty. In fifteen or twenty years you'll be fifty-five or sixty, and will be well sick of carrying an eighty pound amp.

    But with all that considered, and you're willing to haul an SVT around, go for a vintage (70's) one.
     
  4. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Your back says "hybrid." Eden WT-800 or Aggie DB-750 (although your back will still be grumpy over the Aggie).
     
  5. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD
    I think the newer SVT-CLs are muddy as hell, but I haven't tried a vintage one. The Sunn 300T I think would be much better to get a Chris Squire tone. It is capable of getting a much grindier tone, much clearer, or getting the wooly muddy SVT tone. Pretty much any tone short of a crappy solid state amp.
     
  6. Plain Old Me

    Plain Old Me

    Dec 14, 2004
    If you're looking new, the Fender Bassman 300 is the exact same thing as the Sunn 300t...
     
  7. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD
    Yeah I know... I left that out. :oops:
     
  8. Plain Old Me

    Plain Old Me

    Dec 14, 2004
    Yep... Just thought I'd put that in there :p
     
  9. the dude

    the dude Supporting Member

    Sep 19, 2004
    Indy
    Great tone. I've gone through numerous amps over the years - and my long-time guitarist/buddy has just raved about how it's my tone. I currently play a Fender Precision. (I've owned a 4001 - and would like to again.)

    Great reliability. I've never had a lick of trouble with mine in the two years I've owned it. It's built like a tank. It's got a multi-year warranty (which I believe is transferrable to the new owner.)

    Great performance. I finally learned about tube watts vs. solid state watts. This is big when it comes to tone. The SVP-CL tube pre (modeled after the 70's pre) with a CA9 (my fave for SS) is a great tone, but the SVT sound I'm looking for is more than the pre...

    And plenty of volume - never had it above 12:00 (ok, maybe 12:30) and it was rockin.

    I liked it so much I got a 70's SVT as well.

    Yah, the SVT weighs more than any single cablinet I might carry, but when I get there, I've got tone.
     
  10. deichman

    deichman

    Jun 1, 2003
    Kansas
    with the SVT classic. I've had many solid state amps over the past 10 years. A lot of SWR stuff, SM900, 750X, etc. Goliath 4X10's, 6X10's, the megoliath 8X10, Henry the 8X8. I had a complete Eden rig with the WT1000, navigator pre-amp, and two 410 XST's. I'm not going to knock any of it, except the very nasty hiss from the Eden amp. I decided to buy the SVT classic and 810 E cab. For me, it was like, wow! Finally I have the sound I wanted for the last 10 Years. There's no mud in my rig. I love the tone and have found it to be very simple to use. The thing that finally led me there were the reviews. I surfed the web to find every review on every amp I could think of. What I found was that the SVT Classic reviews were very consistent. I didn't find much negative at all. I can't say that for all the others. So, I bought it. I'll never need another amp for the stuff we do. Yeah, it's heavy. If I were gigging every weekend and hauling the amp myself, I'd live with it. That's my two cents worth.


    deichman


    www.endofstory.com
     
  11. Plain Old Me

    Plain Old Me

    Dec 14, 2004
    I can't say I like Ampeg's cabs at all. Their heads (at least the old ones) are great... but I've never ever liked their cabs.
     
  12. Joe Beets

    Joe Beets Guest

    Nov 21, 2004
    This will make the die-hard SVT fans gag on their coffee. I got rid of mine because it didn't have enough poop (wattage) for the necessary stage volume to be heard with the guitars. Also, the guitarists wouldn't help me carry it because they were afraid they would hurt their hands. Then the drummer wouldn't help me anymore because he was too busy packing his "drum kit". Now I use a Stewart. I bought a Grundorf 2-space Mighty Light case, threw away the front and back covers and the latches, and mounted the handle on the side instead of on the lid. With the Stewart 1.2 mounted in the middle of the 2-space case, it stays cool and the whole thing weighs 15 pounds. And I can carry it up three flights of stairs with one hand all by myself. My old SVT weighed about 85 pounds and the re-issue one was about 65. Towards the end it was feeling like 165. If I was 30 years younger...... :meh:
     
  13. bassboomer

    bassboomer

    Mar 18, 2005
    I realize that the weight of these monsters is something to consider, but simply check all the musician magazines and 90% of the Bass players indicate they play with Ampeg rigs.

    If I can haul a 4X10 cabinet or 6X10, I think I will be more than willing to carry the head as well, in my opinion. I gig twice a month and I think I would handle it for that Tone. I will go try one and let you know my thoughts, but in the meantime, please keep posting more information !!!
     
  14. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD
    My biggest beef with ampegs are that no matter what bass you use, you'll still sound like everyone else who plays ampeg.
     
  15. the dude

    the dude Supporting Member

    Sep 19, 2004
    Indy
    Yah, I know what you mean.

    I just bought a Mike Dirnt Signature bass and now everything I play sounds exactly like Green Day! :ninja: :bag:
     
  16. Bought an SVT stack back about '78 or '79. Had it for about three years and could never get the sound I wanted out of it. It's pretty much a one trick pony, but it does that trick very very well. I just didn't like the trick.
     
  17. The CL has a great rock / blues tone and more volume than most people would need. Muddy?, no, you get that from the enclosure you play through and the EQ. Although a sealed cab would definitely be recommended if you decide to go the CL route. Weight?, c'mon we're not guitarists here!

    Now, for around the same cabbage you can get a vintage SVT and that would be what I advise.
     
  18. Turlu

    Turlu Supporting Member

    Sep 11, 2000
    Ottawa, Ontario CANADA
    The SVT seems to be the standard for years and I think it's a good buy for anyone looking to get a good Tone our of his rig. Never liked the Ampeg cabs either, but a great cabinet, like an EDEN, would possibly sound killer with an SVT Classic.
     
  19. Plain Old Me

    Plain Old Me

    Dec 14, 2004
    +1... I would love to try that out but GC doesn't allow cab matching and I don't want a long drive just to try the head out.
     
  20. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD
    So don't try it out at Guitar Center...