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Cheapest Reliable Power Amp?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Da LadY In Red, Mar 6, 2005.

  1. I searched and found nothing. Here's my situation (this isn't too bass related, but it is related to power amps), I want to get some house party gigs next year with my band, I think relying on my single Carvin PM15A (400 watt biamped, active, molded speaker) and my Behringer UB802 mixer is going to be a bit skeet. So, I'm looking into buying a power amp and a passive cab or two to supplement the system.

    I'm looking for the absolute cheapest power amp that isn't going to break. I'm not too worried about sound quality or weight. I'd like atleast decent sound quality and weight isn't an issue, as long as it's cheap. I'm reckoning about 600 watts would be what we need. We'd be (most likely) running the kick and vocals through it.

    Any suggestions? The Nady amps look decent, but I have a feeling one of those would break down on me.

    Thanks for the help and sorry for bringing a somewhat OT topic here! I just figured you guys would have some smart ideas!

  2. QSC
  3. Folmeister

    Folmeister Knowledge is Good - Emile Faber Supporting Member

    May 7, 2003
    Tomball, Texas
    I personally avoid Nady like the plague. Yes, they are cheap, but do a search on TBers opinions of their amps. QSC RMX amps are great amps at affordable prices.
  4. TheChariot


    Jul 6, 2004
    Boston, MA
    Nady has let me down many-o-times.... dont even factor in the cheap price, because it isnt worth it. They're probably the absolute bottom of the totem pole in PA equipment.

    Best balance of price and reliability you will find: QSC

    The RMX 850 will give you 600Watts into 8ohms bridged, or you can get a pair of 4ohm speakers, and get 600Watts stereo. 600Watts is a good target volume for your PA setup. It really gets the job done coming out of my Mackie 808M. Obviously it wont hold a candle to anything that a club has to offer, but it'll hold you steady at a house party... that's for sure.
  5. My first thought was a QSC RMX850. About $300 new. I don't think you'll do much better than that and I wouldn't recommend anything cheaper.
  6. Lowtonejoe

    Lowtonejoe Supporting Member

    Jul 3, 2004
    Richland, WA
    Unless you go with Behringer


    The QSC RMX line is your best bet. Cheap, reliable and musical.

    I got a QSC RMX850 to drive PA monitors with and would not hesitate to use it for my rack if my current amp blew.


  7. Plain Old Me

    Plain Old Me

    Dec 14, 2004
    Crowns have been really reliable for me. I know that their larger watt amps are cheap per watts, but I'm not sure about their fewer watt amps.
  8. remo


    Jan 15, 2005
    mackie 1400i. lots of grunt, good feature set, slightly on the heavy side, good price.
  9. ardorx


    Sep 23, 2004
    Sugar Land, TX
    I have a QSC RMX 1450 and it rocks. I would reccomend any of the RMX series power amps.
  10. i use a yamaha p2500s,....its good bridged for 1300 watts @4 ohm mono operation, so 2 pa spkrs daisy chained generally will give you a 4ohm load. assuming both spkrs are 8ohm each.
    ive never had a bad yamaha product,ive never ever needed repair..never. i think u can score one @250 usd.
    just my 2 cents
  11. Carvin DCM 600,$299.Very well built amp, lighter than the QSC but not as powerful.
  12. lpdeluxe

    lpdeluxe Still rockin'

    Nov 22, 2004
    Deep E Texas
    Carvin is fine. I ran a DCM-something from 1982 until I sold it last year. In all that time the only problem was that a speaker connector came adrift about a year before I sold it. I used it to power house PA, monitors, as a headphone amp, in my recording rack, in my living room stereo, you name it. It never hiccuped or got hot or did anything but turn on and work. I currently have a DCM1000 powering my studio playbacks. It's only 3 years old so I don't know if it's as reliable as the other one yet. So far so good.
  13. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

    well, if you really want just cheap, here is one for ya! --> Click Me!

    We have one of these that we use for our PA where we practice. It's not extremly loud until you put a 4 ohm load on it or better yet, bridge it (in 8 ohm stereo it's just ok). For the money, it works great. I have not had any issues with it and it does not have any fan noise like indicated on a couple of review. Great for the money, but if you have more money to spend, look elsewhere...
  14. Thanks a ton! The Gem Sound might be alright for what I want. I'd rather get a bit more quality (you know what I mean..), but it's an option. It looks like it's either Carvin or QSC. Maybe I could find one used.

    Thanks for the replies, I think I have enough to get an idea of what's in the cards, though any more options are certainly welcome.

    Now I have one last REALLY off topic (bass-wise) question, my UB802 has an a Left and Right speaker inputs. My powered PM15A is 8 ohms ( http://www.carvin.com/products/single.php?ItemNumber=PM15A&CID=APS ). If I bought two 12 inch speakers at 8 ohms, would connect the speakers as follows:
    PMA15A on left for 8 ohms, daisy chain the two 12 inch speakers on the right for 4 ohms? I'm a completely noob as this PA stuff goes, especially as far as adding a powered speaker into the mix. Maybe a 12 inch on each side, with the powered PM15A daisy chain from one of the other speakers? Would that give me 8 ohms on eachs ide (because of the pwoered speaker?)

    Thanks a ton!
  15. MJ5150

    MJ5150 Terrific Twister

    Apr 12, 2001
    Olympia, WA
    Have a look at the Crown XLS series. The music snobs near me sell the 402 for $240 brand new. They have a no-fault warranty for three years. I owned a 402 and a 602. Both were great amps.

  16. cgworkman


    May 14, 2004
    I drive the sh*t out of my RMX2450 with no problems.
  17. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL

    the last thing i'd skimp on would be the power amp. it's the one piece of gear that'll last you the most, thru whatever tonal incarnations you choose.

    again, just save up as much as you can, and spend wisely on a QSC, Crest, Crown, Mackie, etc. what you spend now will save you lots in the future.
  18. I just bought a QSC RMX-850 for $139 shipped from an eBay seller. It is my 4th QSC, and is doing double as my daughter's rehearsal PA then a monitor amp for my band.

    The only downside to the RMX series is the weight.