Carvin BX700 vs Acoustic B600HD for Doubling

Discussion in 'Amps, Mics & Pickups [DB]' started by bassically_eli, Jan 7, 2018.

  1. bassically_eli

    bassically_eli Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2010
    Mebane, NC
    I'm in need of a new amp head for use with an MAS26 that's on the way. I found two really good deals online that might be of interest to others looking for a new amp.

    1)Carvin Audio is selling the BX700 through their eBay store for $331 with the footswitch included. I was just about to pull the trigger on this when I found…
    2)Guitar Center is selling the Acoustic B600HD for $300 plus another 25% off with a coupon code, so $225. Now I am torn.

    I really like the plethora of tone controls and features on the Carvin. I also like the ability to switch the graphic EQ on/off with the footswitch. However, I'm a little concerned about repairs/parts/maintenance with it down the road since they have gone out of business. I'm thinking maybe it's better to settle for the Acoustic, which comes with a three year warranty, and put the $100 bucks towards a separate preamp that will give me more tone controls and will come in handy when doubling on upright and electric.

    Carvin BX700 Pros:
    Can handle a 2 Ohm load
    Semi-parametric EQ
    2nd EQ section (the graphical EQ)
    Footswitch included
    Better compressor (knob vs "acousti-comp" button)
    Con: no warranty. Will parts be available down the road?

    Acoustic B600HD Pros:
    3-year warranty
    Cheaper, leaves $100 to put towards a separate preamp
    Slightly more compact
    Con: Fan on top, fan is reported to be a little noisy

    Anyway, I thought others might be interested in these and have some useful insight.
  2. bassfiddlesteve

    bassfiddlesteve Your first second choice™ Supporting Member

    Dec 3, 2003
    I'd shy away from Carvin for the reasons you've stated. I've also never found their amps well suited for upright bass.

    When it comes to inexpensive amps that work well for both electric and upright, I usually recommend Gallien-Krueger or the Fender Rumble series.

    - Steve
    Elias86 likes this.
  3. Jim Dombrowski

    Jim Dombrowski Supporting Member

    Jan 16, 2002
    Colorado Springs, CO
    Why buy an amp with tone controls that makes you want a separate preamp?

    Either get full preamp/amp combo that meets your needs, or get a good preamp and separate power amp
  4. Dr. Love

    Dr. Love

    Nov 5, 2008
    Lubbock, TX
    I use the bx700 with one or two Phil jones c4's for upright (with an deck pre) and electric depending on the room/pa. I've had no problems, no complaints on the sound, and plenty of power. It seems to me to be a pretty neutral amp: no strong "trademark personality" to the tone like some other brands I've used. The two switchable eq's are nice if you alternate between pizz and arco. I have no experience with the Acoustic amp for comparison though.
    Elias86 likes this.
  5. Or a powered speaker.
  6. bassically_eli

    bassically_eli Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2010
    Mebane, NC
    Yea, I have a couple of GK combo amps that I really like, although I wish the tone was a little less scooped. The MB500 is definitely on my list. I've never played my upright through any Fender amps though.

    I've certainly considered separate preamps and power amp, but at these prices my interest peaked. I could easily spend more money on a stand alone power amp.

    One option is to find an amp that works for electric, and than run a separate preamp for the upright into the effects loop. The more I think about, the more I like this option. Are there any caveats to this that I'm missing?
  7. bassically_eli

    bassically_eli Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2010
    Mebane, NC
    Yea, the switchable EQ seems pretty cool, exactly for the reason you mentioned.
  8. Neither of the brands mentioned in your OP has exactly wrapped itself in glory. Why not, say, a used AI Clarus for $300ish?
    Dudaronamous likes this.