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Bass Player 1 X 12 Shootout SCAM

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Rich Luke, Feb 28, 2002.

  1. Be afraid. Be very afraid of what you read in BP. Take notice of the correlation between shootout winners and the SIZE of the manufacturer's advertisement in the mag. Was it only a coincidence that Aguilar's GS112 won "Top Tone" in the same issue that the company took out a two-page, inside front cover advertisement? That's one of the most expensive locations when you're buying ad space! Let me say this: I have been playing semi-professionally for the past 24 years and I have finally found the best sounding bass rig imaginable. I'm powering the Euphonic Audio CxL112 cab with a Euphonic Audio iAmp600 amplifier. It just doesn't get any better than this! When I saw the shootout results, I did some research and took my bass and my iAmp to the closest Aguilar dealer I could find. Guess what? There's no comparison between the two. My EA has Cadillac tone and volume compared to the Aguilar's Hyundai performance. You get what you pay for in cars and sound reinforcement equipment. I can't say that my EA cab should have won because I haven't checked out the other cabs, but I will say that BP's "Top Tone" winner was chosen based soley on the tremendous amount of advertising income from Aguilar and not at all on tone.
  2. fast slapper

    fast slapper

    Dec 11, 2001
    Fresno, CA
    So I wasn't the only one who thought that the top tone choice was wrong. Have you noticed that companies like Bergantino and Epifani never got awards for there cabs,and Eden,SWR,Ampeg always got them? What you said seems absoulutely true.
  3. This reminds me of the "price fixing" thread, where it was discovered that Aguilar products are manufactured on a grassy knoll.
  4. HeavyDuty

    HeavyDuty Supporting Curmudgeon Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2000
    Suburban Chicago, IL
    Reality time, guys. The advertisers are tipped off as to upcoming features, and are encouraged to purchase ad space to capitalize on the article's free publicity. Haven't you ever noticed an ad for a particular product on the page facing an article that mentions said product in a favorable light?

    It's just part of the mag biz, and you shouldn't read too much into it. Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar! Quit looking for conspiracies behind every bush…
  5. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL

    i dunno, if its a conspiracy cause that would be the ultimate in low-down dirty.

    but yea, i cant vouch for the paucity of the review. i've played the Aguilar and thought it sounded really papery and cardboardy compared to a Bergantino 1x12 which was fuller, rounder, and more hifi.

    but then again, i trust more the ears of the guys here or the HC Bass forums, than anywhere else...
  6. bassmonkeee

    bassmonkeee Supporting Member

    Sep 13, 2000
    Decatur, GA
    The difference is that I was kidding.


    Note: 2 smileys. I was kidding.

    It really isn't that simple. The magazine would lose all credibility in a matter of months. I trust they are as objective as anyone aware of advertising dollars-BUT, I don't think they are taking Ad revenue, and translating it into announcing winners of "shootouts." With that logic, Rogue could dump a ton of money into a two page spread in Bass Player, and get top tone, and best innovation in a bass shootout. I'm sure Rogue has quite a bit more money than Aguilar. That wouldn't fly, and Aguilar isn't as powerful.

    So, don't turn my joke into a flame war.:p :D Again-- SMILEYS
  7. boogiebass


    Aug 16, 2000
    HeavyDuty's right, yer barkin' up the wrong tree, Rich. OTOH, I totally agree with your assessment of EA vs Aguilar. This current romance with Aguilar gear in general (seen here all over the place) will pass, IMO. The same thing happened with Eden when it first became the stuff everybody HAD to own.
  8. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    At one time, I thought there was a correlation between ad dollars and how much ink gear got in BP. But when I investigated it, my little theory went down the toilet.

    Some examples from the recent past - feature reviews on Elrick, Bolin, Veillette-Citron, Veillette, Andreas, Glockenklang.......and the EA 10" to name just a few of many.
  9. HeavyDuty

    HeavyDuty Supporting Curmudgeon Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2000
    Suburban Chicago, IL
    Besides, everyone knows the shootout was flawed because Bag End didn't get the Top Tone. Must be due to the Trilateralist Masons or sumptin'... ;)
  10. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    DR Strings
    This stuff "is" highly subjective. I had an Aggie GS112... now I have EA VL110 and am happier than I've ever been with my rig. Then again, my idea of good sound is probably different than the mainstream.

    I wouldn't think there's a conspiracy. The testers probably did like the Aggie... they didn't compare it to my cabs;)

    Different strokes.
  11. lump


    Jan 17, 2000
    St. Neots, UK
    Maybe BP should take a cue from Rich, and have all gear reviewed by someone who spent twice as much on a competitor's product, to ensure objectivity.

  12. bizzaro


    Aug 21, 2000
    Along with every honest opinion comes peripheral politics. I don't think it is an either or situation. BP is dependent on their advertisers to stay on the rack. I would bet it works both ways. That is a company hears they have won a taste test and takes out an expanded ad. Or BP calls them and says hey you guys won the shoot out. We are going to offer you extra ad space at a discount. And Then, of course, the publishing industries standard of takeing care of the hand that feeds you. Personally I think BP is not what it used to be. Just MO.:cool:
  13. chadds


    Mar 18, 2000
    Hi, refer to the post that said," read the conclusions." If you want this tone buy this, if you want that tone buy that. You know ultimately it's how you play that makes the tone. I remember a story where this bassist idolized Miroslav Vitous all the while believing that if he had a better upright he would sound better. Then by chance Miroslav Vitous sat in and used his bass and sounded like Miroslav. Ok, my KYDD sounds fuller though the AG12 then through a SWR 2x10. But I can rag on the AG too. No way is it as internally heavily braced, the control panel is light and flexible, the jacks don't have that authoritative click of say SWR. It's an around town or personally moved cabinet. It doesn't feel road worthy but I don't need roadies for a 1x12. When you read these reviews take into account that some are priced at different price points or benefit from the vision of a creative designer as opposed to a corporation deciding "we also need to put out a 1x12 because everyone else is offering one."
  14. bben


    Feb 28, 2002
    Santa Fe, NM
    Well, I just got a pair of Epifani T-112s, so I guess I should be upset with BP for "preferring ' Aguilar . But I'm not. I like it when they do comparison tests, they are useful to me, and it takes nerve to do 'em, 'cause whatever the outcome they get flamed by somebody.

    I am happy with my Epifanis, and if the cards had fallen differently probably would have bought an EAcxl112, and would have been happy with that. (I lucked into a pair of Epifanis, used, on BassGear.)

    I found the comparison chart useful, e.g. the type and magnet weight of the drivers. And I found the word descriptions of the tone useful - their description of the Epifani tone seems right on target, so I assume their other tone descriptions are reliable, too.

    Here on TalkBass there seems to be a lot of enthusiasm for Aguilar. In other places, Bergantino seems to be the current rage. Hey, compared to 20 years ago they are all great cabs!

    AMJBASS Supporting Member

    Jan 8, 2002
    Ontario, Canada
    I would like to note that different cabinets have different purposes.....The Aguilar may sound wonderful to one ear, and just ok to the next. It is a very subjective matter. I happen to like the Aguilar, and I feel that it winning the top tone is justified. I guess it is the sound that a lot of people are looking for now. That may change. I also happen to like EA. So much, that I plan on buying a iAMP combo for versatility. I find that the EA equipment has a very hi-fi clarity, and it really brings out the natural sound of the instrument. I find it lacks some of the warmth of the Aguilar. The Aguilar sounds more "organic" in tone. However, I like the way Aguilar sounds live better than the EA(depending on the style of music). I doubt that Bass Player is falsely awarding "top tone" awards. There are so many reviews on TB forum praising the Aguilar, that I find it hard to believe.
  16. RAM


    May 10, 2000
    Chicago, IL
    This has been a big topic of debate, and hence one of "Consumer Report's" biggest campaigns. CR doesn't advertise products it reviews.

    But, in fairness to BP, it's reviewing products whose performance is HIGHLY subjective. You can't say things like "30 less foot-pounds of tourque" in a music magazine the same way you can in a car magazine.

    Rather, comparing products in a magazine such as Bass Player is almost like comparing art. Which of two paintings is better? Well, if you're comparing Van Gogh to my 1-1/2 year-old niece...

    One critique I have of BP's reviews, however, is that the reviews don't seem to do justice to the reviews themselves. Often times I see a product doesn't get a "5", but absolutely nothing negative or constructive...all praises. Instead, if BP was to do a truly decent review, they'd have to have a more extensive review section, and take a no-holds-barred approach.

    But, I s'pose that won't happen, at least as long as BP is primarily funded by the same products it reviews;)
  17. Slightly off topic here, but what is on the cover of the BP 1x12 shootout magazine? I seem to have some how missed the actual shootout, so if someone could tell me what's on the cover, i can see if i can get a hold of a copy.
  18. The only bad review I remember any product getting in BP was the Yamaha upright silent bass; they gave it a 2 for sound. Anything BP reviews I take with a grain of salt.

    Mr. Fortune, I don't have that issue with me, only this month's. It was the February 2002 issue that had the shootout.

    HeavyD, I noticed in one of the other threads that you ordered the resonator! :) Good luck with it.

    Good weekend all,
    Mike J.
  19. Ok, well i must be an idiot, so someone help me out. I'm holding the February 2002 issue, with Dirk Lance on the cover, but i can't find the shootout. Can someone please give me the page number.
  20. Opps, sorry Mr.FortuneCookie, it's the March issue with MeShell NdegeOcello on the cover. I apologize.
    I am a dork. :(

    Mike J.

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