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Carvin B500 VERSUS Genz-Benz 400/600

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by ::::BASSIST::::, Apr 10, 2006.

  1. ::::BASSIST::::

    ::::BASSIST:::: Progress Not Perfection.

    Sep 2, 2004
    Vancouver, BC Canada
    Well, after reading Smash's excellent review of the Carvin B1500 I am contemplating the junior brother to this amp the Carvin B500.

    However, I am also seriously looking at the Genz-Benz line specifically the GBE 500H.

    The wattage is about the same:

    -b500 350/500 at 4 and 2ohms
    -gbe 500 is 400/525 at 4 and 2ohms.

    The weight is about the same.

    I will be driving this amp almost always with a 2 ohm load with the pair of wizzys I intend to buy. I have one wizzy already. Looking for another. The main reason I am looking at the GBE 500 is that the wizzy is actually slightly less than a 4 ohm cab. I think I read that it is 3.87 or something. This means that I will be asking the amp to run slightly lower than two ohms and that has me a little concerned. The GBE series is apparently better suited to this than the b500 because it has a large heatsink as well as a fan. The website says you can run it at 2ohms all day.

    However, that isnt to say the b500 doesnt do 2ohms stable either, its just that GBE is being touted as very stable.

    After reading Smash's review it is my assumption the B500 probably has a better build and sounds like a great amp. From the descriptions I have read of both amp I am pretty sure I will be satisfied with the tone of either.

    Other points:

    - I can pickup the b500 for about $100 less (both I am looking at are used)
    -the b500 has a 1 year parts and labour warranty.
    -the b500 has a more simple layout which i prefer.
    -the GBE has a dual preamp 12AX7 (?) and FET

    I keep coming back to the 2ohm load being "probably" more stable with the GBE.

    What would you buy in my shoes?
  2. RBASS930

    RBASS930 Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 26, 2005
    New York
    Probably the Carvin B800. $20 less than the B500, with a few more watts (500w@ 4ohm and 800w at 2ohm). It is also lighter than the B500. It is suppose to use the same components as the B500/B1500 (but smaller package??) The only disadvantage seems to be that you can not rackmount it if that is important to you.

    **Forgot to add that I really have no experience with the Genz Benz. I was just pointing out that the B800 is another option if you decide to go the Carvin route.
  3. illidian


    Jul 2, 2004
    I would buy the Genz-Benz, without hesitation.
  4. MrBonex


    Jan 2, 2004
    New Hampshire
    I would buy the Carvin without hesitation.

  5. ::::BASSIST::::

    ::::BASSIST:::: Progress Not Perfection.

    Sep 2, 2004
    Vancouver, BC Canada
    Thanks for the tip! the b800 may just be the one. Still not sure about it running slightly below 2 ohms though.

  6. Is it the consensus that the B1500, B800, and B500 all have the same preamp?
  7. ::::BASSIST::::

    ::::BASSIST:::: Progress Not Perfection.

    Sep 2, 2004
    Vancouver, BC Canada
    Yes, it looks that way to me.
  8. Yes. The B1500 and the B500 certainly, and I know of no reason to believe the B800 doesn't also (and several to believe it does).
  9. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa, Product Support-Genz Benz
    The GBE-500 is absolutely stable into 2 ohms AND the ability to handle reactive loads and sub-nominal loads like you describe are a big part of the power amp's design criteria.

    Hope this helps.
  10. cheezewiz

    cheezewiz Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2002
    It'd be a no brainer for me...GB. Although Carvin's new B series amps are getting great press, they have a long history of making sucky bass amplifiers...see "the redline series".
  11. Passinwind

    Passinwind I know nothing. Commercial User

    Dec 3, 2003
    Columbia River Gorge, WA.
    Owner/Designer &Toaster Tech Passinwind Electronics
    Can you cite where you read that? Speaker imedance ratings are an average value, and dips below nominal impedance aren't uncommon. But it's also fairly common for someone to stick a meter on the terminals and quote the DC resistance reading as being the speaker's nominal impedance. It isn't.

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