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Ampeg SVT3-pro questions

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by JRBrown, Sep 29, 2002.

  1. JRBrown


    Jun 21, 2000
    North Carolina
    - What is the difference, besides the front panel, between the current (2002) model and last model?

    - How does the sound compare to an Alembic F-1X?

    - What is the Ampeg reliability rate like?

  2. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
  3. rok51

    rok51 Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2002
    Crawfordville, FL
    Interesting. Other than the cosmetic changes, the new model has Speakons in place of the old styles' five-way binding posts. I have the earlier style SVT III Pro and an Alembic F-1X. I love them both. I bought the Ampeg new in '94 and used it for my stage rig with a pair of Peavey 410TXs. Stone reliable. I still like its feature set. It's a little noisy on the top end at idle, especially if you have a hi-fi cab, but it's not noticeable once I start playing. Mine has a weird "artifact" that is more predominant when the amp isn't fully warmed up...it has a resonance that sounds like the Foster horn has a blown diaphragm. It doesn't. Tried tube changes, returning the amp to the factory, had my own tech check it out...it's right on spec, throughout. I did find that it was in the power amp section (surprise) rather than the preamp as I had suspected. Regardless, it goes away and is not noticeable at any time in a band context. I wanted to go with separates and had always wanted the F-1X, so I got one to go with my PLX 1602. It's an acquired taste. Tone shaping consists of bass, middle and treble knobs, a bright and a deep switch. The eq controls are all interactive...if you adjust one, it changes what the others are doing. My basses have very broad eq capability, so I have never been unable to dial in the sound I was looking for. The Alembic is simple, solid, clean and warm. The Ampeg has been retired to the studio, although I still love its tone as well...try as I might, I never could get a bad tone out of it...it's a keeper!
    If you tend to boost mids and can't do it from your bass, you might want to skip on the Alembic, as its midrange is cut only(yes, you can use an outboard eq, but that's another piece of gear). The SVT III Pro has a lot more eq options and while it is reported by many to be underpowered, I never had to run the master wide open, even outdoors without PA support. There's also the SVP preamp which is very similar, though not identical, to the one in the SVT III (or 3) Pro that would allow you to use the power amp of your choice.


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