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Amps that sound like an Acoustic 360

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by AB53211, May 17, 2004.

  1. AB53211


    Apr 15, 2004
    What are some amps that sound sort of like an Acoustic 360?
  2. Planet Boulder

    Planet Boulder Hey, this is a private residence...man

    Nov 10, 2001
    6,482 feet above sea level
    I once had impure thoughts. Oh, and I pluck my ear hair.
    An Acoustic 370? ;)

    Seriously, though - you're probably looking for something vintage (and of that era) anyway, so I'd say check out an old Sunn or an old Ampeg?

    There are amp modelers you could try, I suppose.
  3. lbanks


    Jul 17, 2003
    Ennui, IN USA
    The Acoustic sound was pretty unique; a Sunn Solid state would be close. Some of the older Peavey solid state could get it, maybe. And, you're talking 2x15, 4x15, 2x18, big stuff.....
  4. Arthur U. Poon

    Arthur U. Poon

    Jan 30, 2004
    SLC, Utah -USA-
    Endorsing Artist: Mike Lull Custom Basses
    Tough question! The 360 was a pretty unique design. I'm not sure if anything else sounded like it did. :confused:

    It's on my wish list right after an early 70's SVT stack!! :hyper:
  5. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL
  6. TaySte_2000


    Jun 23, 2001
    Manchester, UK
    Endorsing Artist: Mojohand, Subdecay, Overwater, Matamp
    Didn't the guy who founded SWR Steve Rabe make those acoustic amps. I could be wrong on this but I'm sure and old SWR and a 2x15 or 1x18 would get you close.

    I'm pretty sure I also saw something on the internet that showed you how to make the preamp section with things you can find at radio shack. It fits into a small pedal with modern day electronics.

    Hope this helps and feel free to prove me wrong as I normally don't know what i'm talking about ;)
  7. Rock&Roll


    Jul 21, 2002
    I don't think you're going to find one that honestly replicates a acoustic 360/361 very closely. In my personal experience with acoustic 306/361 rigs, I've concluded that these amps have a sound unto themselves. I don't think I can describe it really. All I know is, they are punchy, and very vintage sounding. It's not like your 4x10's these days that shake the floor so much that it feels like your standing on jello. That floor shaking effect might be cool, but I've never heard them project like the 361.

    The pre-amp (head) and the amplifier (in the cabinet) are pretty special pieces as well. When one of my 361 amps blew up, I had to use my crown DC-300A power amp to run the cab. The original amp in the 361 sounds great, and so did the Crown; but is sounded entirely different. There may be no bass amplifier system that can be said to honestly sound like the acoustic 360/361.

    Jaco Pastorius used the 360/361 rig, and he refused to stop using it. He worked with Acoustic in testing their new equipment. Jaco never liked the 370's sound; he saw no reason to drop the old 360's for newer stuff he didn't like. Acoustic's next huge amplifier was the 320 head with the 408 cabinet. This time it was a 4x15 cabinet (2 facing forward, 1 facing up in a port, and 1 facing down in a port). These amps were close enough to Jaco's taste that he decided to use these amps on stage, along with his old 360's

    I really don't think there is an amp that sounds like these 360's. But that doesn't mean there aren't amps out there that do an equally good job with their own sound appeal. The most important thing in my mind with any amp is qulality. I say this because when I got my 360's, it opened up my eyes to what "high quality" means in bass amps. The 360 would reproduce all the subtle nuances in my playing, that other amps never brought out. The key is finding an amp that will reproduce your sound with that much detail; even if your useing dark and muddy tone, or bright and biting tone.

    As far as other amps that people have mentioned here.....The 370 would be close, but still not the same. The Sunn and Ampeg amps are great high quality amps; but again, they'll have a sound to themselves. SWR's Steve Rabe did work for Acoustic, but the SWR is none of the same. The SWR sound is vastly different from acoustic.

    So Classic Rocker, It looks to me that if you want Acoustic 360 sound, you'll have to find the real deal, or you'll have to buy a different system and make a close approximation. (I'd start with sunn first :) )

    I've heard that there is a place on the internet where you can buy plans to make the 361 cabinet. I've seen pictures where guys have done this. If you go this route you'll the need the plans, a lot of plywood, heavy tolex, a Cerwin Vega 187 18" speaker, and somehow you'd need to get the real acoustic 360 amplifier and head.
  8. I like the 360 setting on the POD. It nails it down as close as anything else I've heard.
  9. BenF


    Mar 29, 2001
    Boston area
  10. tombowlus

    tombowlus If it sounds good, it is good Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2003
    Fremont, Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    That was my thought, too. It can probably cop a pretty close facsimile thereof.
  11. DAcat

    DAcat Supporting Member

    Jun 14, 2005
    :hyper: I am the original owner of an Acoustic 361 in mint condition-And best of all, it sounds just like an Acoustic! Works perfectly too-but needs a pre-amp(acoustic 360 or other type of preamp)-I' m taking her out of storage-any one have any ideas on what type of pre amp to use since its very hard to find another Acoustic 360- the best bass amp ever made in the good ol days....Peace....DAcat :cool:
  12. DAcat

    DAcat Supporting Member

    Jun 14, 2005
    Oh by the way -the Viva analog "Acoustic 360+" is currently out of stock...Has anyone out there used one (the Viva preamp) with an Acoustic 361 cabinet?...Peace...DAcat :cool:
  13. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

    I know that Jaco also loved the A.M.P. BH-420. It's a GREAT sounding amp that can be had for $250 - $350 used. Maybe those sound like the Acoustic 360? Not sure, but I know that Jaco used and loved the A.M.P.'s also.
  14. BigSky Bass Guy

    BigSky Bass Guy

    Apr 15, 2005
    I gotta agree with RocknRoll... you're not going to find another amp that sounds like the 360... I believe for the simple reason that it was fundamentally different from the others -- its cab was the "folded horn" design, with that backward-mounted 18" boomer. (And who couldn't dig the built-in electronic "tuning" tone?)

    I disagree with RnR that it was "punchy". My recollection was that I'd thump the E string, and a few seconds later (it seemed) the boom would come out the front two ports.

    Also, that sucker was LOUD DOWNRANGE. You could be standing in front of it on stage and it didn't seem too loud, but people would tell me later they could hear just my bass across the entire outdoor carnival, but not the guitars.

    Sold mine for $100 in 1995. Funny , I don't miss it. `Twas like loading and unloading a refrigerator.
  15. KJung

    KJung Supporting Member

    I was just talking to another bassist about this... I'm an 'old guy' who is lucky enough to have seen Jaco a number of times live in the 70's.... he always was playing the Acoustic rig... when did he develop this 'love' for the AMP? What era of his playing did he us the AMP.... I know he played the Acoustic all through the Weather Report/Joni Mitchell era.
  16. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

  17. eldave777


    May 24, 2005
    Hey Quadzilla, where could a guy get a reasonably priced BH-420?
  18. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

    Not here man, mine (your old one) is NOT for sale! ;) :D
  19. gwreid


    Apr 8, 2005
    I remember seeing Slade (old Brit rock group) about 30 years ago and the bass player had a mass of gear topped out with one of the folder 18" Acoustics sitting on its side. I particularly remember this because the image of this guy sticking his head in the cabinet, presumably to hear what he was doing, just stuck with me. I wonder how his hearing is today!!!!
  20. burk48237

    burk48237 Supporting Member

    Nov 22, 2004
    Oak Park, MI
    I saw Jaco in the early 80's playing Guild/Hartke 4 X 10's, yes, Guild was the first Hartke distributor. He still had HIS SOUND, though, Fingers thing. I doubt you would want to get the 360 sound in a club, those cabs sounded great 100 feet away, but had No definition in close. If your really interested you might want to contact Don at low down sound, He just "rebuilt" one of those cabs for one of his customers with updated components.