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Cabs - Ampeg SVT-810AV vs Marshall VBC-810 vs Bergantino NV610

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by boosy, Mar 29, 2009.

  1. boosy


    Apr 7, 2000
    At the moment I have a Marshall VBC 810, with the matching VBA400 head. I'm looking to get possibly a new head and/or cab. Yesterday I tried out an SVT-VR head with the 810AV cab, and also tried my head into the same cab. I was almost tempted by the head but am not sure at the moment. What I DIDN'T try was my head into the 810AV cab vs my VBC810 cab, and I really wish I had.

    My question at the moment is, what should I expect the difference in sound between the two cabs to be? I'm looking to tighten up my sound a little - at the moment my '66 EB-0 going into the marshall head and cab sounds lovely on its own but it's very warm and doesn't cut through much when you're playing with a band. I'm looking to get a little more punch while keeping the warm sound of the EB-0. Is the 810AV likely to help me with that at all?

    Also is there a handle on the bottom of the 810AV at all? If not, how the hell are you meant to carry it about?? The Marshall is a heavy beast (similar to the Ampeg) but it does have a bottom handle which makes it manageable.

    I also read about the Bergantino NV610 which sounds like exactly what I'm looking for. Tight, punchy, not too large or heavy (comparatively), while sounding kinda like an 810AV from what I've read. Is it really as great as people make it sound? It's a total bitch for me to buy, costing about 55% more than the 810AV at places I could buy it from (UK), but maybe I could be tempted.

    Will either of these cabs really make a huge difference to the sound I already have with the VBC-810?
  2. KramerBassFan


    Jan 3, 2009
    I'm sorry to be simple, but you are not cutting through in a band with a Marshall VBA400 and a 8x10 Cabinet?
    Unless you REALLY want some new, expensive gear, try E.Q'ing your amp diffrently, Maybe?
    Thanks, and sorry if thats "Too simple".
  3. boosy


    Apr 7, 2000
    The eq on the amp itself isn't able give me what I need, it's fairly weak in terms of different sounds. When I tried it with the ampeg head I was much happier with the range of sounds that was offering. That's the most expensive bit I could change though so I'm a bit reluctant, and also it doesn't have a gain control which I would miss. I have recently got an MXR eq which I'm hoping will help somewhat, but it's going to be another week before I can test it out with the full band playing.

    I definitely don't want to buy the ampeg cab if it's not going to sound particularly different from the marshall, which was the main point of posting here. Secondary to that - I would definitely like to get something a bit lighter that still sounds like a big cab. That's why I was particularly interested in the Bergantino - It will be less bad for my back and do less damage to my car. It's tempting to go for it but it's by far the most expensive cab I've been looking at so I'm trying to see if anyone here can tell me how much of a difference it will actually make to the sound.
  4. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    It's the EB-0, not the amp. The EB-0 is a very dark sounding bass. I'd be looking to make a bass change before I got rid of a badass Marshall tuber.
  5. demon666


    Jul 16, 2005
    Providence RI
  6. The problem is with the bass.

    However, if you want a basic comparison between the ampeg 810 and the marshall 810.

    I found them to be very similar sounding, however, the marshall was a flatter sounding cab. By that I mean it had less of the mid bump that the 'peg has (tho it still had the mid bump).

    I'd also say the Marshall is a vastly superior build quality than the 'peg. Solid thick ply used. Diamond plate in the right area's. Pop out handle on the bottom etc.

    I use an EB MM Stingray (HH) into an Ampeg SVT-II (non-pro)) into my Marshall VBC810. The amp generally stays close to flat, with usually a slight bump in the mid and treble. And I cut through the mix like a hot knife through butter (and I could cut through much more, to an obscene level if I added more mids and treble with the bass and amp EQs, plus ultra high switch etc).
  7. boosy


    Apr 7, 2000
    I know the EB-0 is a major reason why it's not cutting through. I tried out several basses a couple of weeks ago - a couple of ibanez, hoffner, rickenbacker, a p-bass, and a couple of others. Many of them cut through easily, but they all have a horrible unnatural tone (some to a greater extent than others). I realise it's all down to what round you like, but the more basses I played the more I realised how much I love the EB-0. Playing it on its own it sounds way better than any others I've tried, and it's really easy to play as well. The only problem is with the rest of the band playing away it doesn't cut through, so I'm trying to find ways to keep the EB-0 but get it to make it's mark more. Take something like Grand Funk as a reference. As I mentioned I've just bought an mxr eq as a first step and am looking at further other options.

    I should also mention that the EB-0 has bridge pickup added (before I got it) which helps bring give it more mid and top, so I'm not just stuck with the stock neck pickup.
  8. Ever think of getting an SG shaped bass with some different pickups in there for gigging?

    Sadly what sounds great solo will seldom sound good in a band situation (and vice versa). You need to look at the tone of the overall band, greater good and all that (finally trained one guitarist to understand that, then we get another who is set on having "his" tone which doesnt work at all in the band situation).

    Also, what setups do your guitarists run? If they are going bass heavy then you'll be shoved out the mix, especially with your current setup.
  9. boosy


    Apr 7, 2000
    That's sorta why I was trying out the other basses, to see if one of them would give a sound more suitable for live. Unfortunately there's no way I can tell that sitting in a shop with it. Someone I know has a Guild bass that I liked the sound of when I heard it so I may ask him if I can borrow that sometime.

    In terms of guitar setup - we used to have two, one low heavy rhythm and one lead. When we did that I ran through a fuzz pedal so there wasn't that much full on bass coming through but there was definitely the sound. Now we only have one guitar which is much more of a classic rock sound, so there's a alot more room in there for me and the low end is much more important. No more fuzz. I've been running through a sans amp bass driver, bass wah, into the amp. I'm now going to replace the sans amp with my mxr eq to push the mids so I can dual with the guitar better.
  10. How did you have the sansamp setup? Depending on how you had it set, it can suck out your mids, which will pretty much kill your chance of cutting through. I must admit that I'm surprised that you are having EQ problems and require an EQ pedal when the VBA400 is a pretty comprehensive EQ.

    If going for a classic rock sound, you probably couldn't go wrong with a P-style bass. They'll sit in the mix pretty well. Maybe worth seeing if you can borrow one of someone for a single gig or something?
  11. T-Forty

    T-Forty Guest

    Mar 14, 2008

    That single massive neck pup is your problem.

    With my T-40 I use the neck pup when I want to have a darker, more underlying sound, but when I need to get some more mids/punch in there I switch it to both pups or even just the bridge if I want a rick-ish sound.

    I'm clearly biased with my user name, but maybe try a T-40? You can even keep the darker neck pick up feel but get more mids by setting the tone between 7-10 in single coil mode.

    They can be had for around $300. so this seems like it could be the most affordable thing for you.

    If you go this route start lifting weights though.
  12. Ive tried a Marshall 810 and it was pretty massively loud. It didnt have that punch of an Ampeg, but it did have a lot of thump!

    Orange are currently in the process of releasing an 8x10...maybe try one out? Ive no idea what it will sound like cf to an Ampeg etc at the moment.

    Im biased because I love Orange gear.
  13. Willem


    Dec 26, 2005
    bump for more info about the original question!

    Is the NV610 really that much better than the marshall and ampeg 810?
  14. renejaime


    May 25, 2005
    +1 it's the bass not the amp comment...

    I was going to suggest an outboard pre but it looks like you have already tried a sansamp maybe ask around see if anybody has a tone hammer to borrow something else with some sort of para eq to dial in exactly what you feel is missing.
  15. What Marshall 810 did you try? The one they have out currently is pretty different to the VBC810. Not as heavily built, tweeter, ported vs 810 sealed tank :smug:

    One day I shall find a berg and compare it to my marshall. However, I doubt i'm gonna find a Berg for £280 (IIRC) :)
  16. boosy


    Apr 7, 2000
    The Orange 810 - I read about that. Would love to try it but there's not even any info on the Orange site about it so I think it could be a bit before I see it in a shop.

    The sans amp - there's no mid control on it so all I can do is cut the highs and lows, which isn't cutting it. The MXR should help out though.

    The VBA400 - the eq knobs don't seem to be particularly powerful. And the tone shaping knob - that certainly changes the tone but not in a particularly effective way - I find it hard to tell which one has more mids, which has less bass etc. It may be fine for tweaking an already good sound, but at the moment it's not helping me out much.

    At the moment I think I need to get the MXR tried out properly then think again. I really do fancy the berg cab but sooo expensive. I'm trying to see if it'll be cheaper to import one than buy it in the uk. If I can get shipping for $200 or less that should work out. The current shipping quote I have though is $500! It's a heavy bugger I suppose.

    Thanks everyone for the responses by the way, I appreciate it!
  17. Doubt you'll be able to get it shipped for under $200 mate.

    Remember that you'd get hit with import tax on the cab & shipping and VAT on the cab, shipping and import tax (IIRC), not to mention a handling fee ontop of that.

    Have you tried turning the blend on the sansamp down? I dare say they do tend to "muddy" up the sound a tad, so probably not helping much at all!
  18. Mo'Phat

    Mo'Phat Supporting Member

    Oct 1, 2003
    San Diego, CA, USA
    In my opinion, what you might gain or lose by switching from the Marshall 8x10 to the Ampeg or Berg just isn't worth it in the long run. The only switch I'd recommend is the Berg, but it seems like it's not really worth it money-wise for what you'd get in improved tone.

    Also, you probably won't fix your problem just changing cabinets.

    You should describe more what the EQ on your tube amp is set at, and the controls on your bass, age of your strings, where you play (close to the neck or bridge), how hard you play, what effects you use, etc.

    Cutting through in a band situation is rather simple for bass. Turn the bass knob down, and turn the volume up. You'll cut through just fine with that rig.
  19. boosy


    Apr 7, 2000
    I've already factored in the import tax, vat and all that horrible stuff. $200 shipping is the magic number that should make the Berg worthwhile, but I agree I don't think I'll get it for that.

    A major part of the appeal of the Berg is the reduced size and weight. I'm wrecking my car and cab (and fuel economy!) by leaving it in the car most of the time due to the size and weight. Something I can mve easier would be a great advantage.

    EQ on the amp, I tend to have the mid all the way up, bass a little down, treble a little up. On the bass I have a passive treble cut which I always leave at 10 (no cut). The stock neck pickup I normally leave either at 8 for relatively clean or 10 if I'm wanting it a bit gritty. The bridge pickup is really hard to control, there's a very small useful range, about 8.5-10, where all the difference is made. As time goes on I'm moving closer to the 10 than the 8.5 - above 9.5 it almost all comes from that pickup (trebly) and below 9 it almost all comes from the other pickup.

    Strings - I'm probably my own worst enemy here actually. I've got flatwounds on it, probably a few years old. Playing solo I always prefered the softer sound (obviously at odds with neading to cut through live). It's also nice n easy on the fingers. I never did like the sound of new strings. Advice on this please - I'm guessing you'll say I should get new strings. What sort would you say I should switch to? Oh, I'm also tuned down to D, again doing myself no favours. I'm so used to it though I think I'd find it hard to adjust going back up.

    I tend to play fairly close to the neck, which again goes against me. Geez I'm starting to think it's all my fault! I tend to play fairly hard (but not extremely), no plectrums involved.Effects - until recently the sans amp was the only thing on all the time. I'll be switching that for the MXR eq. I also have a bass wah that I use on occasion, and a memory man too.
  20. Mo'Phat

    Mo'Phat Supporting Member

    Oct 1, 2003
    San Diego, CA, USA
    Well, I guess I didn't read that size and weight were THAT much of a consideration...in that case the Berg would be in improvement. It's sound (IMO) is better than the Ampeg. Tighter, deeper, fuller, rounder, brighter, mellower...everything-er. It's just a brilliant cabinet that sings with tube heads. My Mesa 400+ and NV610 were a heavenly match.

    If size and weight are more of a concern, and you're willing to shell out the cash, then do it. You will not be disappointed in the cabinet.

    As for everything else: Flats don't help. Playing by the neck doesn't help, and you're stuck with your bass and it's inherent deficiencies in tone control. So, although it's not entirely your fault, YOU have a lot to do with why you're particular rig isn't cutting through.

    But, there are ways to fix this without changing YOU all that much. There are brighter flatwounds out there...but I don't play flats, so there's a question to ask in the Strings forum. If you opted to switch to rounds, DR Low Riders and Rotosound SwingBass' are pretty mellow after a little bit of playing. All rounds will sound super bright once you first string them up.

    The SansAmp might not be doing you any favors. I play through an RBI preamp (went from the 400+ to an RBI/power amp combination 'cause I needed the money) and the Blend control is a cursed knob. It absolutely destroys my tone, and I've opted to keep it on 1 or 1.5, and that's it. I don't know if the BDDI has a blend knob, but there's got to be some similarity. That blend knob tended to scoop my bass right out of my band mix. Turned the blend down, and I was back in the mix again.

    Lastly, I have no inkling what the tone knobs on your amp do. But I stand by my position that if you cut the bass knob and turn up the volume, you'll find your place in the mix. The MXR EQ might give you the frequency control you just don't have between your bass and your amp.

    Good luck.

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