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Best lightweight cabs/heads for doubling?

Discussion in 'Amps, Mics & Pickups [DB]' started by eobass, Oct 17, 2013.


  1. eobass

    eobass Supporting Member

    May 7, 2009
    I am looking to upgrade to a super lightweight setup that will sound good with both my upright and my electric. Any thoughts? Anyone using the barefaced super compact cab or similar, possibly with a Genz Benz shuttle head?
     
  2. Ric Vice

    Ric Vice Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2005
    Olivette, Missouri
    If you can find a Shuttle 6.2 and the matching 112 cabinet then it's a fine doubling amplifier, problem is Genz Benz is in reorganization mode, I noticed recently that Gollihur Music is listing them as currently unavailable. Your best bet if you want to go the Genz Benz route is probably the TB Classifieds. I tried out the Mark Bass Big Band last February and thought it was great for both instruments. I'd go over to your nearest GC and try one out.

    Ric
     
  3. I'm happy with my Genz Benz 3.0-10T (unfortunately discontinued), mostly for double bass and EUB (Clevinger with bridge foot pickup), but also have used it with my bass guitar.
    A 12" might be a bit better for the lower bass, but if it gets a bit louder I always feel that I don't need the low bass frequencies that loud. And less than 9 kg to carry around.
    I think the cab of the Shuttle 3.0-8T would be a bit too small.
    I'm sure Ric's combination is great but also a bit heavier. It depends what your preferences are, less weight or more bass response and power.
     
  4. Ric Vice

    Ric Vice Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2005
    Olivette, Missouri
    It's very unfortunate that Genz Benz has gone through so many different ownerships in the past few years. The Shuttle 3.0 10T was one of the lightest,and best sounding amps, they built.

    I've tried both versions, and didn't like the sound of the tweeter in the 12T as well as I did the 10T. It's a different unit.

    I've heard of individuals swapping out the driver in those cabinets, for a neodymium driver that's available from Fatial. Apparently it greatly improves the sound of the cabinet, but it's not cheap.

    Well, at least for me, it's as small as I want to get, vs the output from the unit. The Headway EDB-2/QSC K8 combination is as light as I can go and still have the sound I'm looking for with adequate power reserves, for louder gigs.

    Ric
     
  5. Hi Ric,

    thanks for your opinions and info about the GB cabs. Very interesting.

    We had a small bass players meeting here in Germany comparing my Genz Benz Shuttle 3.0-10T with a AI Ten2 and a Markbass Minimark using my german 4/4 5-string double bass with a Full Circle pickup and Francis decks Quick'n'Dirty impedance buffer (no highpass filter).

    All bass players were not very happy with the sound of the Minimark.
    The Ten2 sounded so natural on the higher strings that the amp could hardly be heard as an amp (my bass only louder), but on the lower two strings it sounded muddy. We haven't tried any filters or EQ, maybe this could be calmed down with a high pass filter.
    The Genz Benz could clearly be heard as an amp but had the clearest sound of all three amps, so in a good way the sound of the bass was very present, which seems to be good in larger ensembles.
    We all decided it is a matter of taste (or kind of ensemble) which of the two is the better one.

    I just thought I write here about this because the OP asked about lightweight amps which all of them may qualify more or less (even if two of them are no longer produced).
     
  6. Ric Vice

    Ric Vice Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2005
    Olivette, Missouri
    I would absolutely agree with your groups take on the Mini Mark. I demoed that amp several times and found it to be overly bright, with little real bass content in the EQ.


    Once again I'm completely in agreement with your assessment of the Ten 2's tone profile. Even with the additional front firing 10" speaker, which is a vast improvement over the Contra, that amp is, in a word,
    so neutral, that it's very hard to get it to cut through, and depending on the room the down firing 10, which sounds great up close to the amp, is not what you want in a boomy venue.

    Last summer AI was the sponsor for the ISB convention, and they used Ten2's for all the jazz concerts.
    so I heard Wayne Darling, Bruce Gertz, Jay Leonhardt, Marco Panscia, and Chuck Israels all play with AI amplifiers. It was interesting, but sometimes very difficult to hear the bass distinctly. The Ten2's sounded better in smaller hall at Eastman. I'm really looking forward to hearing their new Flex system, as it has a redesigned preamp and power section, that hopefully will get at those issues.


    I really love the Shuttle 3.0 10T for DB, but I'd be concerned as to the future of Genz Benz. As long as your willing to accept the possibility of issues with future repairs it's a great amplifier. Of the three amps you mention the Genz has the best tone quality, is the lightest and the most reasonably priced. Fender has evidently stepped in and taken over the servicing for Genz, so hopefully that issue is resolved.


    Good call, Genz Benz amps are very reliable and sound very good.
     
  7. Itzayana

    Itzayana

    Aug 15, 2012
    Oakland Ca
    I have been using a GK800MB (about 6 lbs) and an Avatar 4x10 Neo (under 50 lbs) for about a year now and that is working out really well.
    I also have a GK500MB and an Avatar 2x10 neo for smaller venues. Or stack the 2x10 on the 4x10 for outdoor gigs.
    Both of these rigs sound pretty good with a Tech21 BDDI in front.
     
  8. Ric Vice

    Ric Vice Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2005
    Olivette, Missouri
    I guess I'm to much of a whimp to consider a @44 pound 2x10 cabinet, lightweight. Just my take.

    Ric
     
  9. tappingtrance

    tappingtrance Cooke Harvey Supporting Member

    Jul 27, 2005
  10. Ric Vice

    Ric Vice Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2005
    Olivette, Missouri
    TT
    As a way of comparison, I wasn't fond of either the Markbass Mini, or Micro. I guess I'm just more comfortable with their heads, as the Big Bang is just incredible, especially for it's price point. Generally, I'm not one who gravitates toward combo amps, because IME, IMHO there's always a bit of a compromise going on with an all in one combo.

    I demoed the CMD 121 and liked it better for EB, than I did DB. That said, there are many TB players who use the CMD 121, so it's got a solid following. I just happen to like the Genz Benz combos better, because I prefer that particular amps EQ section, and speaker cabinet. If I were to point to one thing that I think contributes to this, I'd have to go with the FET's that are used in Genz Benz. Walter Woods used them in his MI series amplifiers, and Headway used them in the EDB-1. They just give the Pre Amp a warmer sound.

    Ric
     
  11. tappingtrance

    tappingtrance Cooke Harvey Supporting Member

    Jul 27, 2005
    Not to add confusion but I used to have a Shuttle 9.0 and I thought it lacked balls myself - very thin but that was with electric bass.
     
  12. Ric Vice

    Ric Vice Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2005
    Olivette, Missouri
    Since I've never played through a Shuttle 9.0 I can't comment on that. My experience has been with the Shuttle 3.0 10T, and Shuttle 6.0 12T. I actually preferred the sound of the 3.0 10T mostly due to the different tweeter in that cabinet, and perhaps the lack of a tube in the pre amp.

    Ric
     
  13. andy6126

    andy6126

    Aug 31, 2004
    Chicago
    Ric

    Have you tried the Markbass cab's? Just curious what your take is on them as it seems you've tried the combos. I'm continuing my quest for a cab now that I've settled in with a GB Shuttle 6.2 head.

    Andy
     
  14. Ric Vice

    Ric Vice Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2005
    Olivette, Missouri
    Andy,
    I've only played through a few of them at GC and they tend toward a bright upper midrange voicing. For me, that wouldn't be suitable for DB. It's really to bad that Genz Benz stopped building the cabinets that went with the Shuttle 6.2. as they were perfectly matched the head and sounded great with DB. You might be on the look out for one in the TB Classifieds, on Ebay, and Craigslist. I know that Gollihur has marked them as discontinued. One consideration might be a used EA Wizzy 12 or Wizzy 12 M Line.


    Ric
     
  15. PDGood

    PDGood Supporting Member

    Sep 19, 2010
    Nashville, TN
    I only play electric, but this is the cab that a lot of combo (eb/upright) players are talking about: The Thunderchild TC112
    http://www.audiokinesis.com/product_ak_thunderchild112.html

    I love it on electric. It's very transparent so the sound of your bass (and amp) is what you'll hear coming out of the cabinet. Virtually adds no color - and this is by design. It's essentially a studio monitor built for bass and the rigors of the road. Light as a feather and built to handle the 500w micro heads (though it is under rated and will handle more).
    Absolutely an amazing cabinet. I pair it with an LMlll.

    There is a mega thread about it on TB.
     
  16. DukeLeJeune

    DukeLeJeune rational romantic mystic cynical idealist Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 24, 2008
    Princeton, Texas
    Owner & designer, AudioKinesis; Auth. mfg, Big E (Home Audio only)
    Thank you very much, PDGood.

    The entry on my website is a bit out of date, so I hope it's okay if I do a little catch-up here...

    The Thunderchild 112 now has a different horn with better vertical dispersion, which makes it a bit easier to hear the overtones if you're close to the cab on a tight stage.

    I offer an "acoustic friendly" option, which was developed with upright bass players in mind. It's a rear-firing tweeter that covers the same portion of the spectrum as the front-firing horn, but at reduced volume. This combines with the midrange energy that comes out of the ports (which are right behind the woofer cone) to give a full-spectrum sound behind the cab as well, albeit at reduced loudness. (I realize that conventional wisdom says you don't want midrange energy escaping through your ports - I can explaine my rationale if anyone would like). The acoustic friendly option can be useful if you have to put the cab out in front of you to minimize feedback, and it can help your drummer hear what you're doing. Also, the net result with the rear-firing tweet is arguably a step closer than many cabs come to behaving like an actual instrument instead of like speakers in a box (the new horn is a small improvement in this area as well).

    The rear-firing tweet doesn't contribute as much in an electric gig scenario, as its output gets pretty much buried in the mix. But to the best of my knowlege no one has ever found it to be deterimental.

    I will readily admit that I have deadly serious competition in the high-end upright bass cab world from manufacturers old and new (cough cough Mike Arnopol cough), but hopefully I can at least help broaden the choices available to you guys a bit.
     
  17. Ric Vice

    Ric Vice Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2005
    Olivette, Missouri
    Duke,
    I still have my original TC 112. It's my only large venue cabinet, and the best DB cabinet I've ever owned, which as you know includes a Euphonic Audio VL 208. This cabinet is in a class by itself. It sounds equally great with Electric Bass.

    Ric
     
  18. hensonbass

    hensonbass Supporting Member

    Feb 25, 2004
    Atlanta, GA
    I bought one of the first TC112's and I still have it and it's great for all my basses. I also own a TC115 that I use for the louder rock gigs, however it's great on upright too. Duke is the best!

    I used to use a Genz Benz 9.0 Shuttle and Thunderfunk 750 head but sold both of them after trying the Aguilar Tone Hammer 500. I can make any upright/electric bass sound great with that amp and Duke's cabs. I have both the Aguilar TH350 and the 500 and they both slam!
     
  19. DukeLeJeune

    DukeLeJeune rational romantic mystic cynical idealist Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 24, 2008
    Princeton, Texas
    Owner & designer, AudioKinesis; Auth. mfg, Big E (Home Audio only)
    Thank you very much, Ric and hensonbass! I'm honored that my little cab still has a place in your lineups.

    Amplified upright bass isn't a very large segment of the bass cab market, but it's the segment I most want to compete in, because it's where a finesse cab wins out over a brute force cab. I figure brute force solutions are available to anyone who can haul a heavy enough cab, but finesse lies down a different road.
     
  20. Ric Vice

    Ric Vice Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2005
    Olivette, Missouri
    Duke,
    Actually, I don't have a lineup anymore, just the TC 112
    and two different Walter Woods Heads.

    +1 Finesse is everything in the Double Bass World. All brute force cabinets will get you is feedback. :)

    Ric
     

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