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Carvin Amps and Cabs.

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by azsfcsh, Jul 9, 2005.

  1. azsfcsh


    May 31, 2005
    Gilbert Arizona
    Has anyone had any experience with any of Carvin's bass products? They look really nice, and arnt that expensive. What tones do you usually get out of them? Are they reliable? Im used to play on an SWR Workingman's 4004 with a Workingmans 4x10"T. Will any of the cabs or amps sound like that? I havent seen many people talk about them, or use them, so i was wondering if they are not that great? I mean, if they are pretty good, i think it would be worth it for the price... Makes me want to sell my stuff, and get something from them.
  2. Daytona955i


    Feb 17, 2005
    Albany, NY
    The biggest, most kick @$$ rig I ever played was a Carvin R1000 head into a Carvin full stack (4x12 and 1x18). It was loud, obnoxious, and the shock wave was enough to crush small birds mid flight and spoil the milk in your fridge.

    The head was brand new, but the speakers were a few years old. I don't think they make a 4x12 anymore.

    This guy put on a show and told all the other bands just to bring their guitars if they wanted to use his bands equipment. My guitar player and I brought our amps, but didn't end up using them.

    I loved this rig so much, but I don't really like SWR stuff (at least anything made recently), never A/B'd them though if it helps any.
  3. azsfcsh


    May 31, 2005
    Gilbert Arizona
  4. Dirty Dave

    Dirty Dave

    Oct 17, 2004
    Boston, MA
    Being the fanatic about Carvin basses that I am, I was looking into Carvin amps as an option before I bought my GK rig. I did quite a bit of research and read a lot of mixed reviews and opinions about the reliability of the Red Line series amps and the low end of the RL115 cabs.

    However, I have NEVER read ANYTHING negative about the BRX series from the people who have tried and/or own them....supposed to be very high quality and great sounding gear.
  5. T-Funk


    Jul 2, 2005
    My current bass rig consist of a Carvin R600, RL115 and RL410T, along with a Carvin LB75 and LB75F. Over the years, this setup has worked very well for me in various music settings without any reliability issues. Also, I plan to soon purchase a Carvin RL115T (15" w/ a horn) to use as a standalone cabinet for smaller gigs, instead of the RL410T.

    In my humble opinion, Carvin's Redline equipment is extremely flexible and a great bargain for the price.
  6. Sutton


    Mar 3, 2005
    Plainwell, MI
    I heard lack of reliablity was quite an issue
  7. Eric Moesle

    Eric Moesle

    Sep 21, 2001
    Columbus OH
    As with all posts here at TalkBass, opinions will run the gamut. Look at who's recommending what, is it the teenager or the experienced pro's, the advanced amateurs who post with balanced opinions after owning tons of different gear, or the people who are extremists and recommend something just because its what they currently use.

    My personal opinion: Carvin basses: great bang for the buck, pickups are the weak point, but quite acceptable. Amps and cabs: BXR series are quite good, comparable with many other brand names for the price. Red Line series: cabs are weak, can do better for the same price if you shop around, amps are OK, mixed reviews as to reliability, sound "OK", but require quite a bit of tweaking to get there.

    Again, everyone's opinion is valid, nobody's opinion is less valid than mine, and everyone's desires and needs are different. Take everything with a grain of salt, and listen for yourself and make your own educated opinion.
  8. DaveMcLain


    Jun 19, 2005
    Cuba MO
    My only experience with Carvin's Redline cabs has been good. I had a 2x10 wedge style cabinet and it sounded great, not a ton of low end or anything like that but my expectations of a 2x10 were reasonable and it easily met them.

    It was nicely built and incredibly light and portable, good stuff in my opinion, the ultimate gear, no. But for the price I feel tough to beat, I don't know about the amps, I've never used one of those.

    I used that cabinet strictly for recording and it worked very very good for that purpose. Mic'ed with a Groove Tubes Model 1 mic it was a perfect bass tone for me.
  9. Dirty Dave

    Dirty Dave

    Oct 17, 2004
    Boston, MA
    Easier said than done with Carvin products unless you live in the San Diego area.
  10. This is pretty close to my take (except that I like the RedLine amps somewhat better than OK), and I've owned a fair bit of Carvin bass gear over the years. The one piece I still own is a BRX 1500 amp head, which I think is very good indeed. These days, I prefer the BRX to the RedLine stuff in all respects. If I were you, I'd consider the BRX rigs before the RedLine.
  11. saintx


    May 30, 2005
    I liked the redline 210 I owned quite a bit. Plenty loud, and a better tone than most people would expect. And light, too! I traded it for an old Eden 210, but honestly I couldn't hear a ton of difference between the two when testing both from my amp.
  12. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD
    I've read too many stories of amps overheating, even catching fire to consider any of Carvin's Red Line stuff. I've also played through several Red Line stacks, and they were just horribly underpowered. Not loud at all, weak low end from the tens, and clipping very early.

    I really want to try a BRX though. They look kickass.
  13. 73jbass

    73jbass Supporting Member

    Apr 17, 2004
    I went through 3 different Carvin amps a few years ago. The R600,R1000,and the 1000w poweramp. All 3 were grossly underpowered. I did a side by side test with a first year GK RB 800,and there was no compairison.The GK was louder and cleaner by a long shot.The carvins have great tone flexibility,but don't have the clean power. I just don't think the Carvin amps put out the wattage that they advertise.Especially when a 20 year old 300 watt amp is cleaner at the same volumes,through the same cabinets.I tested them through an Ampeg PR 410 and an Avatar 410. As for their cabinets,I'm not sure. I happy with SWR amps and cabs for now.
  14. I've been using a Carvin V115 & V210 for about 13 years
    or so, and I've only replaced one (1) of the 10" speakers.

    I used to bi-amp, but in the last six months or so, I'm running
    full range and am very happy.

    Until about a year and a half ago, I was using a Carvin PB500
    amp head. I sent it in to get the fan checked out, but it had
    been over ten years before I had to do that. I would say as
    far as reliability goes, very good. Tone is, as always, subjective.

    I'm only contemplating replacing my two Carvin speakers now
    because I want to downsize to a single cabinet (Schroeder 1210).

    So my experience has been mainly with the older Carvin products.
    I also have a Carvin LB20 bass that I like quite a bit.
  15. bass-shy


    Jan 11, 2005
    Carvin gear has never let me down. That's enough for me.

    P.S. I think the Redline series amps and cabs sound great, too.
  16. kowski


    Jul 12, 2005
    Salt Lake City
    I ordered a new BRX-212 bass amp from Carvin.

    Carvin sent me a used, broken, slightly-refurbished, dented, chipped amp and charged me, of course, the price of a new one.

    Interesting that this amp once belonged to Klorence but it was damaged by UPS. I got that one back after it made the rounds (same serial number, 000016) and then, first Carvin denied it, then blocked me from their bulletin board, then gave me arrogant answers, like, send it back and we'll put you back on the waiting list.

    If you haven't paid Carvin yet, count your blessings!

  17. Blues Cat

    Blues Cat Payson Fanned Bass Strings Owner Supporting Member Commercial User

    May 28, 2005
    Katy, Tx
    Payson Fanned Bass Strings Owner
    I have the B1500 & BRX12 & love it no regrets.

    Kowski, if you go on the forum & slam Carvin (explaining your experience) & then contact C.S. to get it resolved, your doing it in the wrong order. If you would have contacted customer service first, you will find they would make you happy & then some for your negative experience. Then your comment might include your experience & that it was resolved to your satisfaction.

    I have no problem ordering from Carvin because there's no pressure to keep anything in the trial period if it's not to your satisfaction.
  18. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD
    With any company, there should be no "right" & "wrong" way to deal with customer support. Just because he went to the forum first doesn't mean he should be treated poorly.
  19. keyboardguy

    keyboardguy Supporting Member

    May 11, 2005
  20. In May I downsized from a Peavey Megabass and Fender 410 Pro to a RC210 Combo and I have been very happy .
    The RC210 is a R600 head with 210's .Fully bi-ampable , so if I needed , I could throw a 115 under it , but I am currently running full range .
    The new band I'm in has a huge P.A. and I just did'nt need the big power anymore . I like the tilt-back feature , it has a nice compressor and gate .
    It is lacking some low end , but it is a small combo .
    Has a very clean line out .
    Hope this helps your decision

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