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Fender (blackface) SHowman for bass

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by BassGreaser, May 5, 2004.


  1. BassGreaser

    BassGreaser

    Aug 22, 2002
    Austin, TX
    are these better than the old bassman heads for bass.
     
  2. nonsqtr

    nonsqtr The emperor has no clothes!

    Aug 29, 2003
    Burbank CA USA
    Well, for live purposes I would definitely say "yes". The Showman has twice the power, and that alone would qualify it as a better bass amp. (All other things being equal, and given that the preamp sections are very similar). 50 watts is simply not enough for live bass.

    For studio purposes, it all depends on the sound you're after. Old Bassman heads are pretty crunchy, they tend to break up early. Showmen are more like Twins, loud and clean, although if you're playing bass you'll get some nice crunch when you crank it. But generally speaking, your sound will be cleaner with the Showman. I've used both in the studio, with excellent results.
     
  3. Nonsqtr covered it nicely. I still have my old (bf) Showman for studio use, but find it to be underpowered for live performance.

    If you decide to spring for a Showman, I would highly recommend that you keep your eyes peeled for the larger upright Fender Showman 2x15" cabinet loaded with JBL D140Fs. The JBLs are very efficient, and the cabinet is a real compliment to the tone of the Showman. A near-perfect pairing.
     
  4. Mel Monihan

    Mel Monihan

    Mar 30, 2004
    I agree with these posts.The blackface showman sounds great in a small controlled environment, but 85 watts is just not enough power for a lagge venue.BTW, my guitar player has both a blackface and a silver face showman (100 watt with reverb) for sale if anyone is interested.He had the 2-15 showman bottom with the JBL D140's in it, but cut it in hald to make two smaller stacks for different venues.The amps are in good shape for their ages.'65 and '69 I believe, but I can find out. Tony
     
  5. Mel Monihan

    Mel Monihan

    Mar 30, 2004
    I agree with these posts.The blackface showman sounds great in a small controlled environment, but 85 watts is just not enough power for a large venue.BTW, my guitar player has both a blackface and a silver face showman (100 watt with reverb) for sale if anyone is interested.He had the 2-15 showman bottom with the JBL D140's in it, but cut it in half to make two smaller stacks for different venues.The amps are in good shape for their ages.'65 and '69 I believe, but I can find out. Tony
     
  6. I had a '66 Blackface Showman, and it really didn't work well with any of my cabinets (a 2x12 Bassman cab, a GK 15 and a few SWR cabs). As a guitar head it was way too clean for me. A friend has a Blonde Showman, he was plugging into the 'Normal' channel, then patching over to the 'Vibrato' channel, basically using the 'Normal' channel as a gain inducing preamp and the 'Vibrato' as the master volume. That amp Kicks All the Azz!!!

    Don't tell him, but it even wipes the floor with my Marshall... :(
     
  7. bigtexashonk

    bigtexashonk Supporting Member

    Having just picked up a 66 Blackface Showman, I can say that it is amazingly loud on my fEARful 15/6/1. When patching across both the normal and vibrato channels, it's beyond all belief how loud 85 watts can be and sound so good.
     
  8. 3l3phantstomp

    3l3phantstomp Doesn't Welcome Our New Overlords

    Jun 6, 2011
    Cincinnati, OH
    I'm using the blondefaced showman right now due to my main rig being blown. Its amazing, and is an amazing fuzzy behemoth with the dials at 5 and the vol at 10. But the dial at 10 sacrifices the bass depth. I ran it thru my ampeg 4x10 cab (b series closed back) last night and it sounded amazing, but the the rest of the band showed up. It's a metal band, so...yeah...i go swallowed up until we mic'd the cab. They are vol freq's, however.

    Here's my fav jimi pic, with Cox rocking LOTS of showman stacks: http://www.wtv-zone.com/ruexperienced/visitors/JimiNYE69_R.jpg

    so I guess the answer is to get six of them, but two combo ones for monitoring ;]p I use the blondeface for a vocal PA at bars sometimes due to it's ability to piggy back and the amazingness of tube'd vocals.


    I used amazing a lot here, and while you get the picture I apologize to those who are allergic.
     
  9. I think the speaker cabs are Guild.
     
  10. edwinhurwitz

    edwinhurwitz Supporting Member

    May 13, 2003
    Boulder, CO
    Endorsing Artist: DR Strings, SMS, D-TAR
    Great to know. I just got my '67 all worked up with new caps and a Mercury Magnetics Fat Stack output tranny. With Philips 7851s, it should do great with a FEARful 15/6/1. I have a theater gig next Friday, so maybe I'll try this before firing up the Grace M103/QSC rig and mic the sucker up. Should be right in the vibe, being a Grateful Dead cover band with an old Alembified Starfire.