Bought an Ashdown ABM500...

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by CaptainWally, Apr 19, 2004.

  1. CaptainWally

    CaptainWally Supporting Member

    Oct 21, 2000
    Sandy Eggo, CA
    My gigs aren't nearly as loud as they once were, and after playing around with the power/pre thing for a few years, I'm going back to an integrated head for simplicity.

    Picked up a used ABM500 and I love it - tried it live tonight. The right tone for me for right now - new meets old school. Warm, articulate/defined (the new school), reasonably punchy, and easy to carry around and manage. Quiet fans are a big plus.

    *Also* --- on the continuous recommendation of the Lakland,Bergatino,Demeter,Gramma Pad guy (what's his name?), I picked up an Gramma Pad, and this thing really does kick butt. $50. No brainer. Buy one. Thanks to that one guy. Thanks talkbass.

    I have two 8 ohm SWR Jr.s and this thing should drive them just fine with ample volume. It's an honest 575W. I do miss the head room of the QSC1602 a bit, but as long as I stick with efficient cabinets, it should never be an issue. I guess anything but a 4 ohm Acme B1 excludes that brand from my reach at this point :)

    In reality, my Aguilar 659, Alembic F1-X, and BBE-Max-T have also sounded more refined than the ABM in their own ways, but it's all about what I need right now and the bill is filled.

    Nothing more to say but:

    1) Ashdown is good stuff and I recommend it

    2) Isn't it cool when you finally get a piece of gear that just works!?

    3) Anyone want to buy a QSC1602 and/or BBE-Max-T? (other pre's are already sold)
  2. Welcome to the Ashdown Club!

    I love my ABM 500, because it has that "new meets old" sound you mentioned. Do yourself a favor, and buy the footswitches to operate the EQ/Shape and Drive/Sub functions. I can now effortlessly go between grindy rock sounds to clean slap sounds with mine! :cool:
  3. GRoberts

    GRoberts Supporting Member

    Jan 7, 2003
    Tucson, AZ USA
    hey Growl. I own an Ashdown ABM500 EVO RackMount. Been loving it. Didn't know they made a footswitch for it? OR are you using a generic footswitch? I agree it's cool to switch in the sub harmonizer.

    hey Capt wally - Wondering if you noticed any power loss switching from your QSC PLX 1602 to the Ashdown? You could always hook up the 1602 to the Ashdown Pre section and see if you notice any difference. I use a Bergantino HT322 with my Ashdown and it kicks, but once in a while when my rock band gets to really thumping, I wonder if I'm running out of power amp headroom?
  4. Jason Carota

    Jason Carota Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2002
    Lowell, MA
    Check out the back panel. My ABM 500RC EVO has two jacks for footswitches. One for EQ/Shape and the other for Mute/Sub.

    Capt. Wally

    Congrats on the new amp! I have had mine for over a year now and I cannot imagine being without it.
  5. Roscoe,

    Yes, Ashdown does make a dual button footswitch that's compatable with the EVO II models. You can see them on their website under Accessories. Does your head have one or two footswitch jacks on the back. Mine has two. I think any aftermarket two button footswitch will work, but the Ashdowns are a very sturdy metal design and are about the same price as the no-name brands online. I got mine through Gary Rosen at Guitar-X.

    Is your Berg 8 or 4 ohm? I am running an HT/EX 112 set with my Ashdown which puts it at 575 RMS and 975 peak at 4 ohms, and it is way loud with very punchy transients. Of course, you may be talking about a lot more volume than I use. If you feel you are running low on headroom, the ABM 900 EVO II might be a better match or, since you are allready rack mounted head, the APM 1000 EVO II poweramp. I know asthetics don't do anything for sound, but that chrome preamp, chrome poweramp, and Berg with the chrome grill would probably be enough to make a Harley-Davidson lover drool !

    I think that Ashdown heads and Bergantino cabinets are a match made in heaven! I would love to try my head through one of Jim's NV 610 or 215 cabinets.

  6. CaptainWally

    CaptainWally Supporting Member

    Oct 21, 2000
    Sandy Eggo, CA
    Yeah, the QSC has more "head room", which, IMO, is different than volume. You can better tone usually if you're not pushing the power amp to achieve the volume you need. I ran one SWR Jr (8 ohm) at 50%, and it was plenty loud for my gig. I can't imagine needing more than the Jrs. (4 ohm load) at this point.

    Plus not lugging around a power amp is part of the fun! :)

    Want to but it?
  7. GRoberts

    GRoberts Supporting Member

    Jan 7, 2003
    Tucson, AZ USA
    I'll let you know about the Ashdown and a Bergie NV610. My local high end shop has one. I'll check it out. I did compare the NV610 with the HT322 and both are wonderful, but I still prefer the magic of the HT322. I'll bet the 610 cuts through the mix reallly well though. To my ears, the HT322 sounded lower and more authoritative on the low B String.

    My Ashdown has been great and sounds wonderful through the berg. I also compared the HT322 versus your HT112 and the EX112. Both sounded great. The two small 12 cabs were truly HUGE sounding compared to their size. Again, I thought the HT322 sounded just a bit bigger and equally smooth.

  8. GRoberts

    GRoberts Supporting Member

    Jan 7, 2003
    Tucson, AZ USA
    PM me Captain Wally. Might be interested in your QSC. Wondering sonically what the differences were between your BBE Pre/QSC versus the Ashdown. Or, which Pre did you favor as most versatile or best sounding? Were either of your pre/power configurations similar to the ashdown? Ie., which got a good Modern tone but could cut with old school fat, full round tones? I'm describing the Ashdown again aren't I? LOL

    This is not to say that I am getting rid of my Ashdown whatsoever. New school meet's Old school is a very cool and uncommon quality to find in one amp. Ashdown Nails both very well.
  9. Peter Lufrano

    Peter Lufrano Blues. and nothing but the Blues.

    Apr 18, 2004
    Berkeley, CA
    Hi Wally,

    I am happy to hear that my (oops!) I mean your Ashdown are working out!
  10. Cool,

    I will be interested to hear about how it sounds. Feel free to PM me with all the juicy details when you do. :D