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Full amp or separate pre/poweramp?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Cohacq, May 11, 2011.

  1. Full amp

  2. Separate Pre/Poweramp

  1. Cohacq


    May 14, 2010
    What do you use? Why did you pick what you did? Do you think your choice is better than the other alternative? Why?
  2. IMHO a good high powered, solid state amp head with a decent ratio wised cabinet are THE best combo for most bass players.

    The right amount of power for one's stage/drummer/bass makes all the difference.

    Most non musicians don't notice your amp, but they will notice if you are a good player or not pretty quickly no matter what! :D

    BTW, I use a Gallien Krueger 1001RB and an Epifani 310UL series 1. I could go cheaper/less and still be fine, but that's been my tone for 4 years now.
  3. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    doesn't matter in the least. i use heads but some like separates...it's all good.
  4. HeavyMrEd19


    Apr 8, 2011
    Either way is good... There are pros and cons though.

    In my opinion, a gigging bassist only really needs a 4x10 and a 1x15 and a simple amp head+ whatever effects. Its simple to carry around, setup, and use. The major disadvantage is usually that you have a limit to how much power your amp can drive. (You can add power amps to it, but that kinda merges the two options and I'm not too knowledgeable on how exactly that works with an actual amp head).

    But if you don't know weather you'll be playing a coffee shop or a stadium from one day to the next, a good preamp/poweramp setup will probably suffice. A setup like this is rather modular, allowing you to have whatever preamp/poweramp setup you want... I personally think it would be a lot of extra stuff to haul and sometimes those rigs can get more expensive than an actual amp rig... but as I said, either way is good.

    It really just depends on what you need for power at the end of the day.

    I hope this helps :)
  5. anonymous122511

    anonymous122511 Guest

    Dec 28, 2010
    Using preamps for me evolved from needing one to buffer the peizos on acoustic basses. When I could get away with it I'd go straight into the PA and not use an amp at all. I just dig the versatility.
  6. Jools4001

    Jools4001 Supporting Member

    I use a bass pod pro as a preamp.

    Modelling is not for everyone but it enables me to program good tones and effects for each of my basses into each bank. For example, Bank 1 is my Ric Channel with presets:

    1 - Core sound - Classic Geddy (a touch darker for me)
    2 - Extra bright - Step up Bruce Foxton
    3 - Core sound + touch of chorus
    4 - 'Old Skool' McCartney

    Using diferent pup combinations and a few tweaks on the basses tone controls I can literally go from the dubbiest dub sound to the brightest Ricken-clang in an instant. Playing in a covers band it gives me the ability to get into the ballpark sound of the original track very quickly

    I have Bank 2 set up similarly for my Palm Bay Atlantic which I use for the first half of the second set since all the songs are tuned to Eb

    Bank 3 is a set of crucial tones for my fretless etc...
  7. cnltb


    May 28, 2005
    I use a re/power amp set up.
    Simply because no head I tried sounded as good to me as that set up. It is still the best I have heard so far.
    I would however do the head thing now too.
    There is one head that I might just get at some stage as I really like it.
  8. Tunaman


    Dec 26, 2004
    Need a separate power\pre to push my 2 epifani 5.3 ohm 310s. Small gigs I bring the micro head. Perfect
  9. srxplayer


    May 19, 2004
    Highland, CA
    I use the pre/poweramp set up because at the time I couldn't find a head that fit my needs. I found that I got what wanted with a pre/power set up. My way of thinking was that I could get a more flexible rig and change the preamp if my needs change. It turns out that I love the way it sounds and I'm pretty happy with it. However, this is not as cheap and flexible as I thought it would be and the size weight is making me consider going back to a regular head.
  10. craig.p


    Sep 28, 2008
    New Hampshire
    I didn't vote because I use both setups. Depends on how loud and/or dynamic I need to be, whether there's mains support, etc. etc. etc.
  11. I use both, more by accident than design, so I go along with Jimmy.

    On the other hand, you can put together one hell of a toneful powerful pre/power rig for way less money than a fancy head.
  12. chucko58


    Jan 17, 2002
    Silicon Valley, CA, USA
    I paid for all my gear myself. Well, me and MasterCard.
    I use a pre/power amp rack setup because I wanted to make sure I had enough power for my Acme Low B-2s, and the pre/power setup got me more watts for less money.

    The rack works great for rock gigs, but is a bit much for situations that don't require that much power. So I'm adding a mini amp to my collection.
  13. Until very recently I've been using pre/power solutions since the late Sixties. First all tube and then tube pre - SS power. I switched to the full amp, a Carvin BX1500, because I was looking to shed more than a few pounds as I age. In a rack case with a power bar and a tuner the BX1500 is a two finger lift. Puts out 450W into each of my 4Ω Acme B2s. I could just have bought a light weight power amp but the total would have weighed more than the BX1500.

    I am very happy with the Carvin.
  14. seanm

    seanm I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize!

    Feb 19, 2004
    Ottawa, Canada
    A combo amp just works for me. Less stuff to carry around and less connections to make. After setting up the PA, I don't want any hassles with my amp.

    And it helps I did find an amp that fits my needs.

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