GK MB115 vs Ibanez P3115

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by manchild, Jul 20, 2013.

  1. Ibanez P3115

    5 vote(s)
  2. GK MB115 II

    14 vote(s)
  3. Other (please specify)

    5 vote(s)
  1. manchild


    Jan 30, 2008
    Ok. Been doing a lot of searching on here for a lightweight/portable yet powerful combo for me to take to small/medium size gigs (larger will have PA support).

    For the price and spec, I have narrowed it down to these 2 (3rd option might be the TC BG250)

    I see a lot of mixed reviews on here regarding both.

    I would just like to see what the true consensus is for both.

    • In particular, I understand that a lot of people on the web hold GK as the best 'tube sounding' solid state makers due to their GIVE technology. Would this be accurate or does this only apply to the old school RB series? Also I find a lot of faults reported on the new MB series heads/combos. Is this just a bad batch or something to consider when choosing them?
    • According to some sources it seems that GK (and in particular the new MB115) have quite a sterile modern sound? With the Ibanez being more 'old school' sounding?
    • How would the 2 compare for quality, practicallity and for adding cabs/amps to in the future for expanding the rig when/if needed.
    I have an ashdown Mag head just now, which I like the sound of. However along with the 15 mag cab I could get for it, I find it way to big and heavy for practicle gigging on a regular basis with a small car.

    I was speaking to my bands 'gui****' :p and he told me that Ibanez are a guitar making not an amp maker and that I shouldnt take that option. I then pointed out that they are responsible for the most popular and most copied overdrive circuit - hehe

    Let me know your thoughts, as I said learnt a lot on here about the 2 but need a direct comparrision before I order one. Unfortunately wont be able to try both or either before hand.

    Cheers :)
  2. nicopiano

    nicopiano Supporting Member

    Jul 3, 2012
    Levis, Quebec, Canada
    I know the GK is great. I have a friend using it.

    I'm using a Carvin MB-15 that is impressive, but I didn't put a side to side with the GK, so I can't compare.
  3. packhowitzer

    packhowitzer 155mm of pure destruction

    Apr 20, 2011
    ive been using a GK MB-115 at my church gig for a couple of years now. not only has it been a HUGE value for the money. it made me a total GK convert after being an Ampeg/Mesa guy for 20 years
    I'm not saying the other amps aren't good, but with the GK it's just hard to get a bad sound out of it. that active EQ is unlike any other i've used. you just set everything about noon and then tweak a bit to taste and practically any bass will sound good through it.
    And regardless of rated wattage or anything else- GK is LOUD when you need it.
  4. The short answer: 'other', Mesa Walkabout Scout 1x15 combo. Compact and gig-worthy.

    On a budget: Have not tried out the Ibanez, but looks like it might be a good one. Well thought out, appears well built, and has not wasted money on (sales) gimmicks.

    I have experience with the GK MB-115. It (and GK's in general) are anything but sterile. IMO, there is no mistaking the sound of the GIVE technology/Boost feature for tube-like. I like it for what it is and find it works very well on a lot of rock material. For a combo with tube-like sound: get the Walkabout.
  5. manchild


    Jan 30, 2008
    Thanks for the replies guys.

    Anyone else got any experience with the Ibanez or GK? Is the GK sound in general the closest to tube sound for a SS or is that just hearsay? Or do a lot of other SS's sound like that?

  6. manchild


    Jan 30, 2008
  7. Yes, that's it. The Mesa is expensive here too, but you do get what you pay for.

    The GK sounds (IMO) like smooth, overdriven tubes with the boost in the low to medium setting (and gain around 2 o'clock). I use it that way routinely, except when I want a really clean tone.

    To my knowledge, the GK is the most tube-like (reasonably priced) combo in current production. If you allow vintage (out of production) equipment, the Ampeg B100R is even closer, but can't be 'cleaned up'.