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Cabs or watts???

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by carl-anton, Oct 21, 2000.

  1. Hey fellow bazzers!

    Help me in my search for the best rig. My current rig is a Hartke 3500 and a Trace Elliot 410, which is fed by me and my Stingray5. It's still a fairly good rig, but I have two problems: It's not loud enough, and I can't get rid of the hard and unpleasently boosted mids.

    So, the question is:

    To be louder, should I get more cabs or should I get more watts?

    Could the hard mid-range steem from a rig driven to it's limits? Or, is the this just the sound of Hartke, Trace or both?

    After seaching threads and shops I've found out what I want, and basicly that's a rig that doesn't colour the sound of bass too much. Therefore I found out that I don't need an all tube head (wich is extremely pricy anyway), or anything fancy. I want a rig sounds great if my playing is great, and lousy if I'm lousy. It should just give me what I give it. I've tried out some tube amps and they sounded great but in my view they also limits you to a particular sound, the beefy one, which is great for some but not for me. It's not that I don't like the sound, coz' it's great for some lines, but especially cords and more comlex lines suffer from it. (I don't in any way want to imply that tube users play more simply thant solid state users! This is just what I think fits my style)
    Since I myself tend to think my Hartke is the problem I've untill now focused on amps. This is what I've come down to:

    GK1001 or the 2000 (only tried the 1001, but I asume they sound pretty much the same))

    SWR 350 or 750 (again, only tried the 350)

    Ashdown bass magnifier (only tried the 250W)

    EBS Fafner

    The SWR sounded the cleanest to me but also a little dull, while the GK sounded great but maybe had to much mids (but mayby they will prove handy while playing with my band). The Fafner is liked here I know, but the first try in the shop didn't impress me too much, but I'll definitly give a try again. Ashdown sounds great, but it seems to favour rumbling lows which is great but also blurs things up I think.

    For cabs the natural choice would be to add a Trace 115, but if it's Trace that's the problem with the harsh mids it might not be the thing to do. It sounds like I should try out SWR but there's none in my town right now, but a Goliath III and a Son of Bertha shure sounds like a nice pair!

    My ideal is that variation in sound and tone should come from my hands, and not from shifting bass for every tune or fiddling with the EQ all the time. So I'm a one bass and one setting kind of guy. I've found the bass my fingers like the most, the Stingray, and now I try to find out how to make it heard.

    Please help me cutting through this jungle.


    ...eh, I mean THANKS!!! -and sorry if it got too lenghty
  2. Matthias


    May 30, 2000
    Vienna, Austria
    Theoretically double number of speakers will increase volume much more than double wattage into the same cab.
    What's the impedance of your Trace cab? If it's 8Ohms, you won't get the full power of the Hartke, adding a 1x15 will help in this case, I guess. If it is a 4Ohm cab and you want to add another 4Ohm cab, you have to find an amp wich is capable of handling 2Ohms (the Hartke is not, the SWR is, I don't know about the others).
    Regarding nasty mids: I guess it's the Hartke - I had the H2000 and I only got rid of those mids by selling it...

    Hope that helps,

  3. ihixulu

    ihixulu Supporting Member

    Mar 31, 2000
    South Shore MA
    I play a StingRay 5 and that bass puts out a lot of mids. It's what gives it its cutting sound.

    In terms of volume, I agree that more speakers would be the way to go. More watts will let you play with a cleaner tone at higher volumes not necessarily louder overall.
  4. phil_chew


    Mar 22, 2000
    Trace elliot rigs are not known for their harsh mids. In fact the distinguishing feature of Trace (according to most people I talk to)is that the sound is "scooped up", i.e with boosts in the lows and highs. It's supposed to be the "British" sound. So if you like this kind of thing, maybe you should go for an all-Trace rig. Get a 1x15" cab to go with your 4x10" cab, and get a Trace amp head to power these. Oh, another thing about Trace rigs. They're LOUD!
  5. jasonbraatz


    Oct 18, 2000
    Oakland, CA
    i have an SWR bass 350 with a goliath 2x10 and a poopy peavey 15, and its currently running 2ohms @ 450+ watts. it's VERY loud, and it doesn't add any offensive colors to my bass. the hartke rig i play on at school has a decent mid boost too, i'm guessing it's your head.

  6. Carl,
    Get another cab. When I joined my current band, I had a Hartke 2x10 combo (3500 head, 2x10 cab.) Suddenly, I wasn't loud enough. So I added a 1x15 Transporter and bingo! Suddenly I was ear-bleeding loud with the master volume no higher than 2. Adding the 15 really opened things up, even though it was only one more speaker. If you throw in another 2x10 or 4x10, I think you'll be a loud and happy camper.
  7. Matthias


    May 30, 2000
    Vienna, Austria
    Yes, yes.
    Maybe my first answer is not quite clear: Adding a second cab will give you more speakers AND more wattage, because the impedance will be lower, and thus the power output will be higher. But with the Hartke, wich is capable of a total 4Ohms load, this is only possible if your 410 is rated at 8Ohms, so you can add another 8Ohm cab!

  8. pedro


    Apr 5, 2000
    Madison, WI.
    >I've found out what I want, and basicly that's a rig that doesn't colour the sound of bass too much.

    That's exactly what I like about the SWR's. I also like the ability to dial in a little nasty grind to it. Just can't stand an absolutely clean sound. Also, as was pointed out by a previous poster you have the ohms advantage.

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