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GK--full range vs. biamped

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by pbass2, Apr 16, 2009.


  1. pbass2

    pbass2

    Jan 25, 2007
    Los Angeles
    Hi,
    I've never used an RB series GK head, other than a classic 800RB in backlines, where I wasn't the one setting it up. I like the GK sound from what I know--I mainly just want nice clean headroom, and simplicity.
    I like ss amps in general, btw. I'm thinking of building a "big rig"---I have a DR. Bass 1x15, and for some reason, the idea of 2x15's really gets me goin', so I might order another one---much of this use will be in reggae/dub settings, some rock. I know for reggae the 2x15's will be tasty.
    I'm thinking I can get something like a used 700RB (or maybe even 1001RB) pretty cheap these days. But isn't the strength of these amps the biamp feature, or are they just as good running full-range (as I would be running 2 matched 15" cabs)? Or would that be missing the point of these beasts? (My other thought is get a LMII, as I love my CMD121P.)
     
  2. Nah, don't worry about it. I have never liked bi-amping my GK stuff, prefer the full range. Used to run an 800rb full range, and I currently run my 700rb full range. I actually wish GK made a singe amp head.
     
  3. georgestrings

    georgestrings Banned

    Nov 5, 2005
    I run a 700rb-II full range with a Mesa Powerhouse 610, and it kicks all kinda a$$ - same thing with an SVT410-HLF... I also have it on good authority that the 700rb works quite well with a 215...


    - georgestrings
     
  4. silky smoove

    silky smoove Supporting Member

    May 19, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    To utilize GK's biamp system with the 400, 700, 1001 and 2001RB heads you'll need the cab wired specifically to use GK's HMS (horn management system). If you're using the 800RB you'd need two cabs and would only see benefit if one cab was intended to be used as a sub and the other to be used as a mid/high cabinet.
     
  5. pbass2

    pbass2

    Jan 25, 2007
    Los Angeles
    Yeah I bet with the 2 15" cabs it would kill for da rub a dub and reggae stuff. 1001RB looks appealing too, just for the extra power which might be overkill for me, but ya never know . . .
     
  6. pbass2

    pbass2

    Jan 25, 2007
    Los Angeles
    Ah I see. Yes, wouldn't be any point for me with the 2 matching 15" cabs.
     
  7. pyrohr

    pyrohr

    Aug 28, 2001
    Pakistani compound
    I beg to differ! own a couple of GK amps, a 1001RBII and a 1001RB 2x10 combo. The 1001RB 2x10 combo sits atop a 1x15RBH cab making the rig a 2x10+1x15, this rig is bi-amped and the control over the tweets the way GK designed it is a very nice touch! This setup allows you to separate the tweets from the woofers and add volume to either without adding volume to the other. My other rig is a 1001RBII with two Aguilar S410 cabs! this rig is full range. In full range both tweets and woofer go up or down in volume at the same time. If you find with a full range rig your treble is too high you turn down the treble knob thus affecting your treble tone across the board, but in bi-amp mode you can kill some of the tweets without affecting the treble.
     
  8. pyrohr

    pyrohr

    Aug 28, 2001
    Pakistani compound
    GK's 400RB series does not utilize the bi-amp system. :(
     
  9. Rick Auricchio

    Rick Auricchio Registered Bass Offender

    On almost all cabs with tweeters, there's a tweeter level control as part of the cab's crossover. One can use that.
     
  10. pbass2

    pbass2

    Jan 25, 2007
    Los Angeles
    Interesting. Well these Dr. Bass cabs have adjustable tweeters, so perhaps that wouldn't be an issue for me. I don't really like tweeters in bass cabs anyways--I actually usually turn the tweeter nearly all the way off or off entirely! Even on my little MiniCMD combo I run the filter up to where essentially the tweeter is not "on".
    Your big rig with the 2 4x10 cabs must kick some booty:)
     
  11. silky smoove

    silky smoove Supporting Member

    May 19, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    Exactly.

    I've never really understood the point of GK doing the whole HMS thing. The only difference to me is that the control for the tweeter is on the front of the amp as opposed to the back of the cab. Seems like a lot of marketing, extra knobs and implementation to move a knob from one location to another. I guess technically it works differently than the L-Pad on a cab, but fundamentally... Not so much. Unless I'm missing something.
     
  12. Bassgrinder77

    Bassgrinder77 Banned

    Jan 23, 2009
    The HF section of the 700RBII/1001RBII biamp drives only the horn tweeter (the crossover is at 5kHz). 5kHz is HIGH and I didn't hear any difference between the biamp approach and just using the cab's passive crossover. All that GK bla-bla about the tonal necessity of keeping overdrive out of the horn is hype.
    I owned and played both a 700RBII and 1001RBII for over two years both biamped (bypassing my cab crossover) and not (using my cab crossovers). GK biamping made no difference other than moving my tweeter level control from the back of my cab to my amp head. Whoopie do.
    However, even that sucks because if you turn your overall volume up or down you have to readjust your tweeter control to keep it in balance, unlike when you use your cab's crossover and the tweeter control sets the relative level of the tweeter to the driver for all volume levels.
    In the end, I used very little HF horn either way. To me, they're best for slap-happy ultra clean players like Marcus Miller.
    They're ok amps but the biamp feature is a totally over-hyped gimmick. This is from someone who owns a 1001RBII (I sold my 700RBII).
     
  13. pyrohr

    pyrohr

    Aug 28, 2001
    Pakistani compound
    This is true but you still are using a crossover in the cab to separate the two while GK's hms completely separates the two allowing you to access just the tweets from the front of your amp on the fly! This is very important in some types of music, In funk music where the bassist thumps and pops this is a great tool especially when the band is not playing loud but the bassist still wants to come through. Yes this can be done full range but it does sound better bi-amped!
     
  14. pbass2

    pbass2

    Jan 25, 2007
    Los Angeles
    This all kinda goes back to my thought: even on a used deal, am I wasting money on features I don't intend to use, and maybe I should just look for some other nice powerful ss head. I'm really just a vol/bass/mid/treble knob kinda guy at the end of the day:)
    But, the GKs sort of evoke a feeling of confidence to me for some reason:) Maybe that's from all those backline 800RBs I've played through over the years!
     
  15. Brick Top

    Brick Top

    Dec 7, 2008
    Michigan
    Since it sounds like there are a few GK knowledgeable people here...I'll pose my question hoping to not step on the Op's toes.

    I have a 800RB...and I don't understand the biamp feature. I currently only have one 2x15 cab. If I get another(maybe a 2x10) and plug it in to the top amp output that says 100watts....and I utilize the biamp feature. Is the 2x10 still only getting 100watts...or does the amp split the total watts between the two outputs?

    I hope that made sense.

    Cheers,
    BT
     
  16. pyrohr

    pyrohr

    Aug 28, 2001
    Pakistani compound
    Most heads people buy have features they don't use so that's not a reason to buy a head if you like it. GK makes wonderful heads imho and I'm very happy with mine. FYI if you liked the sound of the vintage 800RB head than the 700,1001RBII heads do that sound! It tells you how in the owners manual!
     
  17. pyrohr

    pyrohr

    Aug 28, 2001
    Pakistani compound
    The 800RB's bi-amp feature is different from the 700,1001RB heads. That amp has I believe one 300W amp and one 100W amp. The 300 W amp will allow you to use 2 8ohm cabs (4ohm limit) while the 100W amp will use a 8omh cab. The newer 700,1001RB heads have a separate tweeter amp that just powers tweeters! These tweeter amps only push 50W max into the tweets in a bi-amped situation.
    Also, you can plug in the 2x10 cab into the 100W side to get the 100W (remember this is the high side so you will not get the deep lows out of this side) The amp will only split the power if you plug into the 300W side with the other cab.
     
  18. FatCity

    FatCity

    Apr 30, 2002
    Lexington, SC
    Endorsing Artist: Howard's Crispy Fried Chicken Skins
    If you like the GK tone I think you will be pleased with the 700RB. I have been using one for around 4 years now with a 4x10 and a 1x15 full range and it is a powerful and dependable head. I have never felt that I was not using the head to it's full potential by not using the HMS.
     
  19. Bassgrinder77

    Bassgrinder77 Banned

    Jan 23, 2009
    Absolutely right. Also, the 800RB gives you control over the crossover frequency so you can set the crossover much lower than the 700/1001's fixed 5kHz to send an appropriate frequency range to a 2x10 or whatever. If you use a low freq cab (like a 2x15) and a mid/high freq cab (like a 2x10 with HF horn) the mid/high freq cab must have an internal crossover to protect the HF horn.
    The 800RB biamp is fundamentally different from the 700RB/1001RB.
     
  20. silky smoove

    silky smoove Supporting Member

    May 19, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    What is it you think a crossover is doing outside of separating a signal?
     

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