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Full Stacks?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Sutton, Mar 12, 2005.

  1. Sutton


    Mar 3, 2005
    Plainwell, MI
    I have a question about full stacks. Most full stacks contain two full sized cabinets stacked on top of eachother with the head on top of that. I just want to know why? I mean, I kjnow it saves space to stack it, and it fits the name, but I think if you put the two cabs next to eachother, it'd be better. Basically, I've heard some horror stories about heads falling off of full stacks and hitting people. So I just wanted to know if there was a simple explaination on why this is done, other than saves stage space.
  2. TheChariot


    Jul 6, 2004
    Boston, MA
    Wow.... that must suck to have a head fall on you. But then again, I would think it would have to be particularly light to be pulled off.

    I really cant answer your question though. I guess you'd get a better sound with all your cabs on the ground... but I know that I like mine stacked simply to have everything nice and together. I dont wanna wheel one cab at a time around a stage and such.

    Other than that, I cant think of anything.
  3. HamOnTheCob

    HamOnTheCob Jacob Moore Supporting Member

    Nov 21, 2004
    Cambridge, Ohio, USA
    Endorsing Artist for Warwick Basses, Mesa Engineering, Joyo Technology, Dr. J Pedals, and Levy's Leathers
    I'm 6'5" or so and I like to have a full stack so my glass of water is at a convenient level. Also, full stacks look cool. :)

  4. 11Bravo

    11Bravo In That Pocket

    Feb 4, 2005
    Its the way it sounds,I have a 215 cab and it sounds bad if i lay it on its side to play.I allways have to have it upright.You never see a person with 1 810 cab play it side ways only if its 2 of em so it would like 2 810 any ways.If people have like a 410 they usally tilt it so you get a better sound.
  5. TheChariot


    Jul 6, 2004
    Boston, MA
    hahaha... oh man. I'm a foot shorter than you, and I prefer the fullstack as well. I'm now the drummer in a band, and my bass player is about 5'10" or so.... and we use my stack. OF COURSE sometimes I cant friggon find things. One time I needed a roll of tape, and I end up jumping into the air to see on top of my rack. VOILA! Gaffer's Tape! :p
  6. For several years I used a 4x10 and a cab with a 15+10. I always had the 4x10 on top because "that's the way everyone else does it." One day someone stacked my cabs for me and put the 15 cab on top, and I loved the sound of it with the 15 on top, closer to ear level. It made a world of difference, to me for my stage volume, for what I heard, and I felt better about my playing.

    As far as the stacking vs. side by side- there is a factor called "coupling." I don't know much about it, whether the cabinets being in physical contact and pushed together by gravity actually making a bigger sound, or if side by side still couples sound. From what I'm aware, having 2 cabs together provide a louder/bigger sound than a cab on one side of the stage and one on the other.
  7. Tash


    Feb 13, 2005
    Bel Air Maryland
    It puts your head at eye level for easy knob tweaking.
  8. Lowtonejoe

    Lowtonejoe Supporting Member

    Jul 3, 2004
    Richland, WA
    Ahmen Brutha.

    I put my 15 on top too.



  9. Plain Old Me

    Plain Old Me

    Dec 14, 2004
    I usually have my 8x8 and 215 on their sides, I like the sound...
  10. I only have a 410 at the minute, but have played with 2 410's and it sounds better with them ontop of each other, well to me anyway, i get a pure-er, straighter sound because the speakers are closer to ear level and not just disintigrating my shins

    on another note, i wonder if anyones ever stacked 2 810s . . . probably, would be pretty impressive and hellishly unstable tho :D
  11. this got me thinking
    iuf i stack my cabs i have a stack, right?

    so i will take the stack down and lay them on the floor

    cause if i stack them up and get a stack, hopefully if i lay them down i will get a...
  12. jobu3

    jobu3 Artist formerly known as Big Joe

    Feb 17, 2002
    Mountain Top, PA
    It brings the speakers higher up, closer to ear level which in turn makes it easier to hear. Depending on the set up of the stage and the room, you might bet better throw and clarity with a stacked set-up as well.
  13. *bu-bum-tish*
  14. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY
    I know a lot of players who like the feel of moving air on their pant legs, but I like my sound up where I can hear it. Back when I had a Kustom 3x15 it wasn't much of an issue...but I've been using a single 4x10 for the past 10+ years. Early on, I wasn't comfortable with the low cabinet...and then I read something (I believe it was Mike Watt) talking about how he always lifted his cabinet. I tried this once and have been doing it ever since. First off, you can turn your amp down since it's closer to your ears...second, it puts my head at an easily visible level for tweaking without bending and for checking my rack tuner.

    But there's one other BIG advantage. Most of the stages I play on are hollow, and amplify the boomy super low end of the amp (think about the airspace in that box) if the cabinet is placed directly on the stage. Since each stage is different, it adds a whole new variable to each room you play...which if you want to retain control over your own sound is difficult to deal with. Less feedback, better sound, more control...all good things.
  15. Dirty Dave

    Dirty Dave

    Oct 17, 2004
    Boston, MA
    Well first of all, I haven't played too many clubs where putting two bass cabs side-by-side wouldn't be an issue as far as stage space goes. As it is with the conventional stack setup, I am always battling with the drummer for that extra inch of space, and I play in a four piece group.

    Second, both of my rigs have a 115 and a 210, and if I don't get the 210 up higher, I lose a lot of the mids/highs.
  16. Ive gotten into the habit of lifting my amp of the ground, 4 bricks does the job, cuts the boom your talking about and gives it a better sound, even if it is only 4-5 inchs closer to my ears :p
  17. DubDubs


    Aug 23, 2004
    Los Angeles
    You also want the speakers to be as vertical as possible. I forget the technical reasons (maybe someone that knows more about speakers can help me here) for this but it's alwasys better to have the speaker as close to up to down as possible, side to side is not good.
  18. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD
    Read this. It explains the history of the stack and how it was born.
  19. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    Honestly, I feel that your reasoning that a head might fall rather rediculous. I've never had it happen, seen it happen, nor heard of it happening. I could imagine it happening in an earthquake though, but then it would fall no matter what... ;)

    The reason people stack their cabs is generally to have them closer to ear level, and to have their head at eye level. I generally find small combos with controls on the face rather annoying as you have to bend over, tweak 'em, stand up, step back to hear, step forward, bend over and adjust again. Having all the controls at your fingertips is a godsend.

    P.S. Please don't rig my head to fall on me ;)
  20. lo-freq

    lo-freq aka UFO

    Jan 19, 2003
    DFW, Texas
    Dirty Dave hit a big reason.

    Other than that, I depends on personal taste, how the cabs were designed, and the acoustics of the performance environment.

    Schroeder cabs were primarily designed to be set on the floor to maximize projection of the lows, but in some venues two on the floor (if you have the space), the bass will get too boomy.