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Buying New Half Stack Opinions wanted!

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by JDM2010, Aug 20, 2012.

  1. Hey guys,
    I got to looking at my current gear set up and realized that I have great sounding basses but not a decent amp for small to medium venues. I was looking for a half stack consisting of a 4X10 cab and a Hybrid or solid state head but hybrid is preferred.
    I currently own a Ampeg B-108 that I use for practice with my friends. I unfortunately have a limit of $1200 dollars at my disposal for a new half stack. Due to my financial situation that is the most I can put out for this new gear. I know there are several brands to choose from like Ampeg, Hartke, Ashdown, GK, Acoustic, Etc...you get my point. I also mention that I play metal and hard rock. Opinions are very welcome as I am having a hard time deciding. :bassist:
  2. With $1200, you can get quite a rig!

    I have no suggestions for you until I can get A little more info.

    What type of music do you play?
    Effects or not?
    Band set up? Loud drummer? Loud guitarist?
    Ect. Ect...

    These questions might help us to narrow down the possible solution to your problem.

    Always remember to look at used gear too!

    Edit: I just saw that you play Metal and Hard Rock. Excuse me for that. Its late and I'm already a little slow. :bassist:
  3. Korladis

    Korladis Banned Supporting Member

    Why a 4x10, specifically?

    Why not a 2x15 or 2x12? Or perhaps even 4x12?
  4. +1

    To the OP, I would check out a GK head and either a 115 or 212 either in 8 Ohms. When you need move volume double up on what ever cab suits you best, two 115's or two 212's.
  5. craig.p


    Sep 28, 2008
    New Hampshire
    WRT driver longevity, take into consideration whether it's a 4-string or 5-string bass. The latter places special demands on a cab and needs to be accounted for when you choose.
  6. You Guys are right I should have given you more info. I play a 4 string Spector bass. I tend to avoid 5 Stringers because it would slightly narrow my choice of cabs (Ported Vs Unported) IMO. I prefer 10'' speakers over 12", 15" or 18" simply because one again IMO they sound more balanced. My drummer hits REALLY hard. So hard in infact we constantly have to tell him to play softer. Broken cymbals are a common thing with our band:rollno: He has very poor meter too. Practices are hell because our guitarist and drummer have what I call "The Who Syndrome" because they constantly try to be louder than one another which results in yours truly getting drowned out. Our guitarist uses a 300 watt head into 2 4x12 cabs set side by side and all I have is a 100w acoustic amp with a 15" speaker running wide open.
    so here is how it breaks down:
    A) Loud Drummer
    B)Loud Guitarist
    C)I use Spector basses.

    long story short I should find a better band to join...I guess I will keep a look out for a good deal. Tanks to all those who so far have voiced their opinions!:bassist:
  7. RickenBoogie


    Jul 22, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    In that case, I'd be looking at some BIG cabs, 8x10, or a pair of 410's. 500 or so watts should do, but what amp is purely a matter of preference. If it were me, 1st I'd not play with children, but in any case, I'd go BIG on my rig, Mesa M9 Carbine and a Powerhouse 412 cab. But that's me, and probably over your budget. good luck to you sir.
  8. 2X15 have too much BOOM and not enough BARK IMO. I use a active Spector bass and I like to emphasize the mid-range frequencies to get the most out of my bass. 10" speakers compliment my sound better. I have tried a few 2X15 cabs and even a 4X12 but I keep finding myself being pulled back to the 4X10's.

    I should also add that I have a funiture dolly so weight is not an issue.
  9. Mesa is WAY outta my budget but I do like that "modern sound"!
    And yes I am looking for a new band. Our leader is 20 going on 2 :scowl: and he insists on being "Leader". His song writing is TERRIBLE. I live in a small town that is mostly filled with pentecostal churches so when it comes to my style I have to take what I can get :crying:. it sucks.
  10. You need to get out and play more cabs. I say that partly in jest because driver size has no bearing on frequency response, and also because you need a reference point.

    My recommendation to you is buy the best cab you can, and pinch pennies on the amp. IMHO the cab plays a bigger part of your tone than the amp.
  11. Mesa isn't out of your budget, man. I own a Powerhouse 412, Powerhouse 610 and an M Pulse 360 amp. The $412 I got for $850 and 610 and amp for $1000. Wait for a good deal and you can find good gear.

    I'd recommend Mesa all the way.
  12. Korladis

    Korladis Banned Supporting Member

    I play a 2x15 myself... and my tone tends more towards the bark than the boom. I mean, the low end is very solid, so it definitely is a large dog barking, but it's still not really that rumbly.
  13. Gearhead17

    Gearhead17 Supporting Member

    May 4, 2006
    Roselle, IL
    Go used and for $1200, you should be able to find something worthwhile. Check out craigslist and report back to this thread about pieces of gear you find - we can steer you in the right direction.

    Also, generalizing what speakers sound like by looking at them is a TERRIBLE idea. Each manufacturer does something different with their enclosures - it really comes down to FULL design of the cab. Try it first in ALL CASES.

    For metal bands, a 410 should be minimum. Keep the low end from being boosted heavily and rely on the low mids and grindy bass tones to cut through. If you want to cut through with low end, the guitarists need to cut their low end content and you need to purchase more bass cabs.....
  14. Korladis

    Korladis Banned Supporting Member

  15. Loud and decent sound on the cheap? Metal? Sounds like a used SWR or Ampeg 810 and perhaps an Ampeg PF500 new with warranty. There has been some PF500's with problems but I don't think they all are effected. Mine has been holding up great pushing a SWR Big Ben and Golliath Jr at 4 ohms in a stoner rock group. Buying a new PF500 protects you just in case and the sound and power is a true bargain in the new market. 500 Watts into a decent 810!!! You won't regret it.
  16. I recently acquired a used GK 700RB-II and Neo 410. I love them, play metal and have a loud drummer and two guitarists! No problems here so far. It sounds amazing, and you can biamp it for for great versatility if you have the 4 pin Speakon. And I got them for $650, which is well within your price range.

    I play a five string and a four string, both Ibanez, and I think it sounds fantastic with both. I'm planning on adding a Neo 115 in the coming months just to even out my sound a bit, and for extra volume, but I probably don't NEED it, just really want it.
  17. gjbassist

    gjbassist Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2005
    Kansas City, MO
    +1 for the GK 700RBII. Pair it with a GK 410 Neo or 212 Neo for a killer rig. Add a second cabinet down the road if needed.
    If you need more power check out the 1001RBII head instead. It's freaking loud! Rarely have I had to put the volume past 10 o'clock. The classic rock band I play in has a heavy handed drummer and a guitar player with a Marshall stack. Here is mine with a Neo 212 on the bottom and a Neo 112 on top.
  18. Jack


    Sep 6, 2003
    Newcastle, UK
    I am in the small amps club and I'm a believer in downsizing. Having said that, your metal band with full stacks probably precludes you from this and I'm forced to agree with my learned colleague here.

  19. Sorry I did not reply yesterday. I decided to be wise and TRY before I BUY. After several hours of trying different cabs and heads I narrowed my options. I think for my particular sound I should go with a amp that remains clear at high volume so Its either GK or Hartke. Now mind you before you jump at me for this I think the Hartke HyDrive 4x10 and LH1000 head would be a great bet in my case. I tried one out at a guitar shop and although its a SEALED cab I like the fact that it kept a clear defined sound at loud volume. In fact I never had to crank the volume knob past 4. I should also mention that we found a new drummer. Old drummer got a DUI a few nights ago and said he didn't have time for us anymore cause he will be in jail till he see's the judge. New drummer has WAY better meter and chops too and does not destroy the kit. Back to the topic at hand I used to own a secondhand GK MB150E combo amp. I sold it to my school's band director for $400. So long rant short I tried a Hartke HyDrive 4x10 to see what the hype was over these new paper/aluminum cones in a sealed cab and was very impressed with it. NOT because of the looks! I know even the most nice looking amp can sound terrible and like alot of bassists I thought it was just a new gimmik. I took my own bass and used it through the 4x10 and LH1k head and compaired to the Acoustic B100 I am using now it really made my spector NS-2A come alive! I was impressd with its simplicity too. Too many knobs and switches confuse me! :p

    This is a seperate topic but wonder how the LH1K and HyDrive 8x10 sound together? Any thoughts?
  20. MissTheTrain


    May 11, 2012
    I bought an Ampeg SVT 4-Pro head (1200 watts mono bridge at 4 ohms) and 610HLF used for $1200. Got plenty of volume with room to spare.

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