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GK 1001 v MBFUSION/MB500/MB800

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by rodl2005, Mar 10, 2013.

  1. Please educate me.
    If one could acquire a 1001RBII at the same price as the MB500/fusion, & of course, pay more for the mb800, but lets keep it in the mix...
    What are the differences? Apart from size & weight.
    Would anyone NOT recommend a 1001RBII over a mb/fusion etc?
  2. I've found lots of info, but couldn't find any real comparisons of the 1001 & mb's.
  3. birminghambass

    birminghambass Supporting Member

    Sep 18, 2002
    Birmingham, AL
    What kind of music? How big are the venues you play?
  4. Classic rock to some post punk, thru to some funk, & soul.
    All kinds.... Night clubs & small theatres (1k ppl) to functions & pubs (up to 3-400) Even some parties where there ain't PA support.
    cabs- Berg NV412, 2x 3015 modded PF115HE
  5. birminghambass

    birminghambass Supporting Member

    Sep 18, 2002
    Birmingham, AL
    I've owned and gigged the 700rb, 1001rb, and MB 500 for the past 4 years. Didn't keep the 1001 long because the 700 was plenty loud. I play loud rock, blues, and sometimes country through 2 1x15 cabs. IME, the RB series smokes the MB 500 in punch, volume, and tone. I play with a heavy touch, the MB couldn't keep up the way the 700 could, not even close.
  6. aftec


    Feb 16, 2013
    Tried both went with the RB series. Having a big transformer in an amp was always a good thing and I guess it always will be. Just my 2 cents.
  7. I've been looking for a 700 or 800RB but in these waters, ain't many going & 1001 & 1000 RB's are what's about lately.
    Good to hear yr thoughts so far, thanx:thumbup:
  8. worshiprocker

    worshiprocker Tonepump Junkie

    Aug 12, 2011
    Mesa, Arizona
    Endorsing Artist: Spector Basses
    birmingham, are you playing a passive or active bass? I'm curious as to if that effects the results here. I use active Spectors.

    I have gigged a 700rb, 1001rb and mb500 in the past couple years. I'm a huge GK fan. The 700 was sweet, but I settled for a 1001rb when my 700rb was in the shop. I recently got a mb500.

    My mb500 hits harder than my 1001rb, the tone is 98% the same. The MB actually has a fuller lowend to my ear, the RB had a bit nicer mid growl (mb channel 2 can get close). Let's be honest none of us really need 1000watts or more, lol. the 500 watts from the mb500 is more than sufficient pumped through a 412 or 810.

    I do prefer that the DI is on the front of the RB series and has a level control for the DI.

    My recommendation is this: if you are using a GK cab then get an RB series and use the biamp feature. If you are using another brand cab, go with the MB. I'm liking my MB more than my RB but love them both. My drummer loves the mb500, a bassist friend of mine loves my mb live and said it sounds a little better than the RB (complete personal preference)
  9. Excellent to hear the differing views, thanks & keep em coming.:thumbup:
    The more opinions, the more I can relate it to my situation.
  10. Chef

    Chef Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    May 23, 2004
    Columbia MO
    Staff Reviewer; Bass Gear Magazine
    1001: grittier and more low fi than any of the MB; and, will biamp the Neo cabs.
    The biamp feature is why I have one. I had the neo cabs, and wanted to try it.
    It's got more horsies than I'll ever use.

    All the MB's are cleaner by nature, with lower lows and higher highs.
    The MBF is a little softer.
    With the MB500/MBF500, I have, very seldomly, wished for more power.
    With the MB800, it's got a lot of horsies too.
  11. Jared Lash

    Jared Lash Born under punches

    Aug 21, 2006
    Denver, CO
    I didn't have my 1001RB-II to A/B directly to my MB800 but it seems like others experienced the same difference I did - chiefly that the MB800 seemed bigger in the lows and with more present highs and that the 1001RB had a bit more "character" to it's tone, which I thought was in the upper midrange.

    I could see how some might like the slight extra tweak to the bottom and top and the overall more "clean" sound of the MB800 but personally I preferred the 1001.

    And while the MB800 has more wattage on paper it actually felt to me like the 1001RB had more headroom.

    I've never tried the MBFusion and only tried the Fusion 550 at GC with a bass off the wall. Hardly the best environment to form a solid opinion but I liked the amp. GK tone with just a bit more warmth and smoothness.

    Just my $0.02
  12. aproud1

    aproud1 Don't surround yourself with yourself. Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2007
    Cincy, OH
    I've owned the 700, 1001 and currently use the MB800. My favorite was probably the 700, just sounded right and there was plenty of power. Sounded really great cranked up. The 1001 soounded great too but seemed like overkill to me.

    The MB800 sounds very good but a bit cleaner up top and a bit, just a bit tighter down below. I find I tweak knobs a bit more with the MB800, where as the 700 just seemed to sound good. I would have a hard time switching back though as the size, weight and performance of the MB800 are pretty hard to beat. And it's not like I have played a gig with it where I even thought about having a different head. I think the extra (perceived?) clarity works in my favor at a gig anyways.

    I have not played a MB500 but would imagine it is plenty loud. Even my beat up crappy Backline 600 seems loud to me.

    All that being said if you don't mind the weight and interface on the 1001 I'd say go for it. It is a great amp and rightly gets plenty of love around here. Either way, you will get a loud and great sounding amp. All IMO of course.
  13. all great info, again, Thanks :hyper:

    Anyone know much of the 1000RB? - one that's worked well for years- I can grab one cheaper than the others & 500w would do me.
    Wondering if it's similar to the (similar power rating) 800RB or even 700RB or if it'd be worth a try :confused:
  14. aproud1

    aproud1 Don't surround yourself with yourself. Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2007
    Cincy, OH
    If you need more power than the 1001 provides I would be shocked. That amp is a beast. Rated conservatively. And like I said before IME GK stuff just sounds loud. Cuts through and still sounds deliciously bassy.
  15. Chef

    Chef Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    May 23, 2004
    Columbia MO
    Staff Reviewer; Bass Gear Magazine
    1001 v 700:
    the 700 is pretty dang loud, but, it didn't stay clean enough for me. So, I went 1001.
    Plenty of guys do it the other way around
  16. Don't think I'd ever need more than the 700 or 800RB, but as a 1000RB & at a li'l more $ a 1001RB are available 2nd hand, I'm "feelin" :)
  17. 4Mal

    4Mal Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Columbia River Gorge
    Recently purchased the MB Fusion. Have had 400/700/1001 in the Rb Ii line. I go back as far as the 400b with Gk... Yeah, Ok I'm a fan... The Mb Fusion is the best yet for me. I like the smoother high end. Used it with no cab last night for a rock / blues session. Not aure what the tap e sounds like (we actyally use tape...) but over the headphones it sounded really darned good. My tracks last night were done on a Music Man tube head, 2x15 with a Heil PR40 and split to the Mb Fusion. The MM/Pr40 rig has been my goto for a while, last night I monitored just the MBF. I got it pretty close to the Mm rig with just a bit of tweaking.

    The MbF is a great head! It has plenty of power. Any room or outdoor venue I play that needs more oomph will have significant FOH support. I know that some folks think they need more power. I certainly don't. At a point, my rig is a monitor. I never felt volume constrained using an MB2-500, pretty sure I won't with the MBFusion either.

    When I was running and 1001 RB II I was running it at 8 ohms so about the same power. Neither of the ones I had ever got even warm...

    My .02 and worth every cent :D
  18. Chef

    Chef Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    May 23, 2004
    Columbia MO
    Staff Reviewer; Bass Gear Magazine
    Man, those Heil mics are great, right?
  19. IPYF


    Mar 31, 2011
    I don't know squat about the fusions. I've heard they're great and I've always wanted to try one.

    The 700 is the amp you get when you want the GK grit tone and you don't need to take on more than one halfstack and/or a zealous drummer.
    The 1001 is all about the clean headroom. It's perfect for scaring elephants and if you use the woofer and boost settings correctly it can and does growl.
    The 2001 is for when there are people up the back of the stadium with opera glasses.
  20. aproud1

    aproud1 Don't surround yourself with yourself. Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2007
    Cincy, OH
    See... it talk like this that creates GAS for things we don't really need. :help:

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