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Gibson GB-440

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Tenacious E, Oct 7, 2002.

  1. I have an opportunity to buy a Gibson GB-440 amplifier, apparently very similar to the old AMP gear. During a forum search a found one thread that discussed the history behind the design of these amps, but no comments as to what they sounded like, reliability, etc. Has anybody out there actually played one of these? If so, could I get your opinion, especially a comparison to any better-known equipment?
  2. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Supporting Member

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    DR Strings
    Hi Eric,
    My AMP BH-420 is still my favorite amp. It really lets the sound of whatever I plug in come through. I've compared it to pretty much everything that's been available in the last ten years and the only reason I can see for buying anything different would be the need for more power than this amp has (420w).

    If you like to tweak you have a nice four band semi-parametric EQ section

    I don't have direct experience with the Gibson variant but I know Russ Allee, the designer, went to Gibson so I'd expect the same reliability. I've used my first one without incident for over ten years. I bought a spare a couple of years ago and use it occasionally but have never needed it. I just did a gig in a 1500 seat auditorium Saturday night and as usual it sounded great. The amp and my Brubaker bass were both set flat. I had several people come up after the show and comment on how nice the growl was from my setup. I've gotten used to that ;)

    What cab(s) are you planning on using. My main rig was based on Euphonic Audio VL-110 cabs, which are inefficient. The BH-420 pushed them well but I didn't like working it that hard. I bought a 600+ Hughes & Kettner head. A short while ago I stumbled onto a great cab combination that's very efficient (My new rig ) so I was able to switch back to my BH-420 ... and I couldn't be happier.

    Bottom line, put in a good signal and get it back... much louder. Put in a great one and get get a great sound. Almost too simple. The amp is relatively light and very portable. At the same wattage I haven't seen anything I'd rather use, including Eden, SWR, Acoustic Image, Walter Woods, Ampeg, EBS, H&K, etc. I certainly wouldn't choose seperates over it.

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