Don't put your head on the cab?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by craigb, Feb 2, 2001.

  1. craigb

    craigb Supporting Member

    Actually the quote from the owners manual of my new head is "We recommend you avoid putting it directly on top of your bass speakers." So where else am I supposed to put it? I mean I realize that the vibration is probably bad for the head in the long run but I'm kind of at a loss on where to put it - I can't think of anywhere except on the cab I've seen most bassists put their amps.

    Any recommendations? Do I need to go find some kind of rack stand to hold it at a reasonable height but not on the cabs?

    Life was easier with a combo.
  2. what kind of amp?
    what kind of cab?

    it the head enclosed or is it a rack mount head
  3. Gabu


    Jan 2, 2001
    Woodland Hills, CA
    I say put it on there. 100000000 rockers can't be wrong. If your amp craps out over those vibrations it was gonna go bad anyways. You kick the hell out of it alot worse everyime you load it up in your van and scoot around town.
  4. craigb

    craigb Supporting Member


    The head's a Hartke HA4000 (all solid state, so no tube worries). It's enclosed with feet but also is rack-mountable (I don't have a rack but do have the pieces to build one if that would reduce the wear-and-tear).

    The cabs are a SWR WM-15T (hasn't arrived yet) and I'm going to use my Genz-Benz ML-12T combo cab as well (although it's a combo the head-cab connection is via a speaker cable so I can drive it from the Hartke).

    maybe I just shouldn't have read the manual - then I'd put it on the cab just like I see everyone else do and not worry about it.
  5. well i just looked it up at hartkes site and they have a good link to bassplayer
    guessing you have been there, bass player gives it a good write up and says nothing about rack mounting it.
    maybe the manual just has the basic electronic warnings like a cd player would have.

    hell put it on your cab, it has a one year warranty if it doesn't fail in a year it probally won't.

    bass player said it was very durable and road worthy
  6. My amp is in an SKB rack case, and I put some large rubber feet on it, so I have no qualms about putting it on my rig.
  7. White_Knight


    Mar 19, 2000
    I've got a friend who's using a Hartke 3500 on top of the Hartke 215 XL cab. He sets it right on top - no problems that I know of at all.
    I've heard that warning for tube amps, since vibration isn't very good for tubes; but I've never heard anyone say that about a solid state amp. I think that most cabs are made of thick enough wood that there shouldn't be all THAT much vibration (at least not in the ammounts to damage an amp). YMMV, however.
  8. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Think about it. Hartke makes a number of combos.
  9. MikeyD


    Sep 9, 2000
    I think amps from most reputable manufacturers are designed to tolerate typical vibrations from bass speakers. However, I am certain that a head that spends its life in a vibration-free environment is likely to outlast a head that is subjected to vibrations. (All right, maybe 120 years vs. only 25 years!) But it is a consideration. You can buy vibration-absorbing mats (like ones they put under turntables) or isolate the head in a similar way with damping material.

    Note, though, that sometimes vibrations are good! They can help contacts stay clean, etc. I remember how we used to slug miscreant tube TV sets or radios upside the head, back in the day, to get them working properly. I think it just shook the innards so the dust/corrosion on electrical contacts was abraded off or something to that effect.

    - Mike
  10. The infamous "Technical Tap".

    I a piece of egg-crate foam between the head and cab. Not pretty, but tubes last forever that way. Of course Ampeg put rubber shock mounts in their heads holding the chassis isolated from the vibration. First-class all the way.

  11. VicDamone


    Jun 25, 2000
    There are scissor type stands much like the ones used for keyboards but smaller.

    Or, try using three or four 4"x4" pieces of 2" thick foam rubber as feet between the component and the cabinet. Using too much or too little foam won't dampin. Feel the cabinet then feel the head during play. You won't be able to eliminate all the vibration but by tuning the size of the foam to the weight of the head you may see at least a 50-75% reduction in vibration at the head.
  12. Just use a floor mat from your car. I do this all the time, and it works. It's also a good idea to put one under the cab itself if you're playing on a wooden/hallow stage, as the stage itself will become a big speaker and the mics will pick up the sound/vibration...very bad, unless your sound guy and audience like a muddy mix.
  13. craigb

    craigb Supporting Member

    Thanks to everybody for the suggestions. My other amp is a combo so I did kind of think that the warning might have been the generic legal cya type of thing.

    I'll try some foam - I've got some different pieces of packing foam lying around. I'll also take a look at the stands available (although I'm not sure I want another piece of gear to haul around). I'll probably build a rack for it as well, eventually.

    Again, thanks for all the suggestions.
  14. MJB


    Mar 17, 2000
    Consider this. Every combo amp has the head sitting on the cab.
  15. VictorLeMonteWooten


    Dec 6, 2000
    just put the cab on the head. :)
    i've never heard of a head crapping out because of sitting on a cab. its proably not a good idea to place anything on a head (i've never tried it, have you?). if you want to be a wory wort get a rackmount case or make your own out of peanut brittle and peg board (it may work for red green).

    off the topic, i wondered who designs some of these bass cases? i cant fit a pack of strings in my molded hs precision bass case. the compartment is to narrow. i have to put the strings on their individual wrapping.
  16. Groove


    Jan 13, 2001
    MJB is exactly right. Every combo amp has a head sitting on the cab. I've used and abused my SWR Silverado Combo for years and have never had a problem. For the record...tubes are more durable than people think.
  17. brewer9


    Jul 5, 2000
    My head takes a total beating taking it from gig to gig etc. And at the shows and at practice its always on top of my cab. Never had a problem with it.
  18. Laker


    Mar 23, 2000
    I've got a twist on this cab/amp thing for ya! When playing smaller venues where I only use one of my EA VL210s, I put my rack on the floor and tip the EA back on top of it. I put the rack on top of the back cover from the rack to get it slightly off of the floor so I don't have to worry about kickin' the power amp. The setup works great.
  19. marty, where did you pick up the big rubber feet for your skb rack?