Glockenklang Soul

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by hensonbass, Jul 20, 2009.

  1. hensonbass

    hensonbass Supporting Member

    Feb 25, 2004
    Atlanta, GA
    I'm interested in the Glockenklang Soul head. Anybody got some thoughts on this compared to the Heart Rock or the Soul II?
  2. The only difference between the Soul and Soul II is that one of the midrange center frequencies was changed so that the Soul II preamp is now absolutely identical to the Heartrock.

    I've never played a Soul II, but the Soul and HR sound identical (except for that one mid band). The HR is much heavier and much louder.

    If I were considering a Soul head, I would STRONGLY consider the Puma500. Similar tone (although I like the Puma's EQ a bit better), and the Puma is a fraction of the size and weight.

    IMO there!
  3. Dee-man

    Dee-man Supporting Member

    Apr 6, 2004
    SF Bay Area
    Hi Ken. So I have a Puma 500, which I really like, but have always had some weird Glock GAS. There's a soul for sale near me that seems like a good deal. What would the soul do for me that the Puma doesn't/can't? One TBer said the Soul can get pretty grindy/tubey, but beyond that they might be the same. Any further distinctions in tone, power, whatever you can comment on? Thx, DM
  4. Hi, I have a Glockenklang Soul. (Don't have experience with the puma, so I can't compare).

    I did compare the Soul to several other amps that I have played for longer or shorter periods in the past:
    - the Aguilar AG500
    - the Aguilar DB 750
    - a Trace Elliot (forgotten which one)
    - a Hartke (ditto)
    - the older Markbass Little Mark
    - the Hevos 400B
    - a vintage Klemt Echolette 40 watt tube amp (2 x EL34)
    - a Marshall ??? forgotten the type
    - the EBS Fafner
    - Yamaha digital amp (forgot the type)
    - Ampeg ???

    Of these amps, the Glockenklang Soul is the best (together with the Aguilar DB 750) . To me, it sounds clear, with authority, honest but not (!!!) lifeless or boring. It does have a sound of its own.

    Maybe you can compare it with good Italian food, which is made of only a few ingredients that simply natural, like a tomato, or cheese, or pasta, should. But in this honesty there is the elusive character of the chef........ (if you can follow me, perhaps a bit TOO romantic comparison :):meh: )

    The ventilators are "intelligent" and are very quiet.

    Anyway, if I take the Glockenklang Soul as the standard, the other amps sounded like this (hope this helps):

    - the Aguilar AG500: very nice sound, nice 'burp', but in the longer term this gets boring. Like too much ketchup on the food!

    - the Aguilar DB 750. Nice amp, more 'muscular' than the Glock. Stronger for rock but with less detail in the highs. Strong character, which does not get boring soon. However, it is expensive, heavy, big, cannot be played at low levels, and has two ventilators that are VERY noisy.

    - a Trace Elliot (forgotten which one). OK, 1-dimensional.

    - a Hartke (ditto). Piece of ****

    - the older Markbass Little Mark. Harsh, "in your face" sound. The Glockenklang is direct without that "o man that hurts" that the Markbass has (in my ears). The Markbass does get loud but sound too ugly - I hear that newer types sound much better though.

    - the Hevos 400B. Very nice amp which is made in the Netherlands (2 hours away from me). More bassy, mellow, rounder than the Glockenklang. Less detail in the highs and I missed the 'tighter' bass that the Glockenklang has. But it is very good nevertheless.

    - a vintage Klemt Echolette 40 watt tube amp (2 x EL34). Was good for guitar but too mushy for bass. I missed the tightness, maybe it needed servicing? Sold it.

    - a Marshall ??? forgotten the type. Nothing special. Not my thing.

    - the EBS Fafner. Nice clean amp but man it sounded thin. I was constantly EQ-ing but I could not find my sound.....

    - Yamaha digital amp (forgot the type). 100 different "OK" sounds. Which I do not need. Give me 1 great sound please!

    Soul I / Soul II. The II seems to be a little better. You can have you amp modified by Glockenklang, but I imagine that sending amps to Germany and back would be expensive. Maybe Udo (Glockenklang's boss) can send the parts + a DIY instruction? Anyway, I hardly use the EQ, which is very effective btw. And I am not interested in overdriven bass sounds. So, the Soul I is perfect for me. I would not loose sleep over the "I or II" issue - the are * very* similar.

    The Heartrock is louder and sounds almost the same (some claim that there is a slight difference). Again, they are very similar. the Heartrock is more expensive, bigger and heavier though.

    So I am very happy with the Glockenklang. Yes it is heavier than the newest 'ultralight' amps. Without flightcase maybe 12 kilos? Nothing compared to a tube amps (30 kilos or much more); or to a DB 750; but more than the featherweights (3 kilos). I haven't heard a better amp though (although KJung says that the puma is just as good - but ! - on the german forum, people are very positive about the Glockenklang amps (both Soul I/II and Heartrock) whereas the opinions on the Puma are mixed: some like it, some find it too polite/smooth or even boring. So - I think I'll stick to my Glock! .

    Edit: the Soul (I) cannot get 'grindy'. It is clean all the way up. The Soul II can be overdriven. As said, on there is an opinion that the Puma can be a bit boring but the Glockenklangs are not, even though they are "clean clean" amps (withouth the pathetic 12AX7 pre-amp that alledgely gives 'warmth' and gives ampbuilders the excuse to write "REAL RED HOT GLOWING TUBE INSIDE !!!" ;-) ;-) Glockenklang does not need tubes to have a warm sound :)
    Sinest and Jefenator like this.
  5. Dan Knowlton

    Dan Knowlton Sometimes you're the dog, sometimes the tree Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2000
    Palm Coast, FL
    So, you had not had something to eat for a while when you wrote it, had you?

    I have the HeartCore and just absolutely love the Glockenklang sound.

    Dan K.
  6. JTUK


    May 25, 2009
    Some good work here and useful comparisons. thanx

    It would be nice if someone could add any thoughts about Thundefunk and the Glock..
    I like the idea that the Ag500 isn't out of this league ... like some others might be.

    This is useful in regards my quest to replace a SM400 and I've spoken to KJ about this.

    Watching with interest
  7. Dee-man

    Dee-man Supporting Member

    Apr 6, 2004
    SF Bay Area
    Thx for the info guys. And, yes, for goodness sake, Doublestop, get something to eat!

    Any head to head comparisons for Soul vs. Puma 500?
  8. naturalkinds


    Jan 22, 2009
    Savannah, GA
    I'll be able to chime in at the end of the month with an indirect Heart-Rock / Puma 350 comparison. I just traded the Puma 1x12 combo for a Heart-Rock (plus cash, obviously). Apples to oranges, perhaps, but it might be elucidating. I myself am really curious on the differences and similarities between the two.

    Unfortunately, it's really hard to be in a position to try imported gear this fancy against other fancy gear. You need to have pretty deep pockets -- and a pretty forgiving partner -- to do it!
    ialma likes this.
  9. Dee-man

    Dee-man Supporting Member

    Apr 6, 2004
    SF Bay Area
    Tell me about it! That's why I asked KJ. :D
  10. Shiveringbass


    Aug 21, 2005

    I've got those two heads at home at the moment.

    To my ears, the Soul has more things going in the mids. It gives an impression of more details (string noise...).

    The Puma is fater in the low department and has more polite mids. I also have a bit less control on the treb, the Soul having two band for the highend (4.2khz and 12khz)

    However you can come close to the Soul with the puma in turning the Taste knob to the dry side at about 10, 11 o'clock.

    If you have a Tecamp cab, I would not recommand you a Soul. This combo doesn't realy work cause Tecamp 12" equiped cabs are realy too mid/upper mid oriented for the Soul.

    Hope it helps.
  11. Oooouh, that hurts :(.

    Soul I and II differ also in the preamp. Udo does not tell what he does (no DIY option) and to get an update to the II you'll have to send the amp to germany. The other differences you mentioned already, the midrange and the gain knob gets a very slight and understatement overdrive function (Glockenklang overdrive function, not assmaster overdrive...).

    The HeartRock I has this bite in the highmids which gives the basssound the needed presence in the mix, it's great for rock. Combined with the power, this amp is friggin' loud and natural sounding.
    Comparing the Soul I to the II, I'd describe it like that: The I is a very good sounding amp, great dynamics, very detailed, but with the update it's like you would take a blanket from the amp. It's even more open sounding, very clear and musical, dynamics are amazing. I always have the feeling that the tone hits me before I hit the strings.
    The preamp has a quality of sound you'll never be able to get with a Puma for instance.

    And the HeartRock II is more like a strong version of Soul II. It's just power, power, power. When you're not playing THAT loud, I'd recomment the Soul II, because in higher volume, the natural compression adds really a great thickness to the tone.

    I've never seen any better EQ than those on the Glockenklang Amps. Within seconds you have the tone you want in a very good sounding way, but those amps sound great even without EQ. That's their biggest strength.

    Glockenklang - good sound only with gain and master.

    I just love them.
    Jefenator likes this.
  12. Maybe I have to add that there is a Glockenklang syndrom. Once you started to look for that precise tone, you always want to go on. That's why I did the update to Soul II. When we talk about these differences, we have to admit that they're not like comparing an old SVT-2 nonpro to an SVT-3 from Vietnam, but the difference is there. These Glockenklang preamps go more in the direction a Avalon U5 preamp is going.

    I'm sure many people are very happy with their puma, it's a good amp. But Glockenklang stuff is just a different level.
  13. :D I did! (pasta, fried tomatoes, blue cheese, olives and a salad with oil, coriander, toasted sunflower seeds and olives - sorry I don't know which amp that would be :D )
  14. Dee-man

    Dee-man Supporting Member

    Apr 6, 2004
    SF Bay Area
    Thanks for the gastronoic index, Doublestop (and the chuckle). Sounds like you must've gotten a good mid-bump with all those olives.

    Thx for the comments S'bass and all others to date. The Soul II sounds really sweet but is not in my near future (good local deal on an approx. 3 year-old Soul I is what's prompting this). I'm not replacing my Puma 500 (way too light) or my Aguilar DB359 (too warm and gooey), so this would just be an effort to quench my Glock GAS and add a new flavor. But really helpful to know the differences (they sound relatively subtle). I really like the taste knob on the Puma, particularly on the dry side. Sounds really good with my Mouse through a Berg 112.

    S'bass - how would you compare the punch, volume, girth, and je ne sais quoi between the Soul and Puma?

    Thx again, DM
  15. babebambi


    Jan 7, 2008
    That would be an entire music store, lol.

    P.S. what did you have for dessert ? :p
  16. Shiveringbass


    Aug 21, 2005
    This is a tough one. I've played for the 6 last years on the full Glock stack, Soul + 4x10" Quattro and got two gigs now with the full Tecamp stack Puma 500 and M212.

    Anyway my comparison were at home volume. My experience is that the Soul has got all the punch and balls to cut through the mix with ease.

    During those 6 Glock years I almost never used the Soul eq and most of the time I would simply bypass it. Just perfect tone that sits in my band mix perfectly.

    With the Tecamp I've not yet found the sweat spot and the rig needs some equing to be to my liking (too much upper mids, very deep lowend that are not always desired...)

    At the end of the day, if it was not for weight, I would just be playing that Glock rig for the rest of my life.
  17. Dee-man

    Dee-man Supporting Member

    Apr 6, 2004
    SF Bay Area
  18. Dee-man

    Dee-man Supporting Member

    Apr 6, 2004
    SF Bay Area
    Well, I'm happy to report that I picked up the Soul I head and Take 5 cab this past Sunday. Paid the asking price, but still a really good deal (but quite sad, in a way, cuz the seller really didn't want to sell but had to raise cash due to unemployment). Anyway, I've only tried it a bit with a fender jazz, and man does it sound sweet. Very clean and strong. I was surprised how little the eq knobs need to be turned to have a big impact. As S'bass said, the Soul seems to have a lot more mid-punch than the Puma 500 when both are set flat. Can't wait to fiddle with it more and try it through other cabs. This thing has unbelievable build quality, though the fan noise was a little louder than I expected (though you can't hear it when playing).

    For you Soul users, how do you find yourself using the pregain trim for input B (active basses). I think the manual says to set it at 12 noon as the default, but then what do you do, if anything?

    Also, how do you like to set the gain and volume? For the Puma, I follow their suggestion to set volume at 12 noon and adjust the gain to set the volume level (although I do the opposite with my DB359, go figure). Just curious.

    Thanks again, DM
  19. Shiveringbass


    Aug 21, 2005
    Hey Dee-man,

    Congrats on the Glock rig. Since the Take five is exactly the same cab as the quattro (but lighter) you have exactly the same rig as mine (soul + quattro) and man, this is one of the best rig available !

    I agree with you on the built quality, this thing is a tank and you will see your Puma differently now.

    Well for the pregain trim I just put it to max position and forget it. From there I setup the gain level just before the clipping light flashes. Then you just have to choose the volume you want from the master volume.

    The pregain is made to accord the volume of two bass when both imput are used so that you can keep the same gain level.

    The eq is very powerful and the low mid knob at 130hz is the growl factor of this amp.

    For the Puma, I set it the same way (gain just before clipping then volume from the master). It seems to me it is the best way to set up an amp.

    If you have more questions, just ask. I own this Glock rig for six years now and can talk for long about it.

  20. You will be very disappointed if you set the Puma per your above statement. Just like most other solid state amps, the key to getting the Puma to crank is to use the pre gain clip light as your guide, and set the pre-gain to a level just before the clip light comes on at your lowest, loudest hits. Given the sort of audio taper of the Puma input gain pot (wonderful.... lot's of room to micro adjust), the physical level of that pot (and the master) can be very much higher than many other amps. For most moderate output active basses with 'average' technique (i.e., not pounding on the strings), the Puma pregain setting can easily pass 2 o'clock, if not 3 o'clock, and the Puma (just like the Glock) keeps getting louder all the way to past 3 o'clock on the Master with the appropriate pre gain setting.

    Regarding the input of the Soul (which I assume is the same as my previously owned HeartRock), that 'trim' control on channel B would not be needed except in the unusual case of an EXTREMELY hot bass (active or passive). Remember, all that is is a variable pad control (versus the fixed 10 or 15db cut on most 'active' input or push button pad controls. It would again be unusual to have to use that.

    The input section of the Soul II and the HR is a bit unusual, since they are designed to growl and grunt a bit (these are not voiced like the uber clean and transparent Heart Cores, etc.). So, the input 'clip' light is not really a 'trouble' indicator like on most amps (like the Puma), but rather lets you know that you are in the range of the preamp putting out some mild 'overdrive' break-up. This happens at very low gain settings, since these amps are meant to 'rock' more than the uber clean higher end Glock products.

    So, just set to taste. If you lower the gain enough (and/or use the Pad control) to keep that light off, to me, the amp sounds dull and lifeless. Plug your bass into channel A, ignore the light, and set the level to what sounds good to you. Then control the volume with the master (which is similar to the Puma... you really have to crank that pot more than most other amps to get the Soul/HR cranking.

    I hope that helps... enjoy that head. And, if you get a chance to try the Puma again, set the input gain correctly. You will be amazed at the full, clean, absolutely tranparent tone of that amp IMO!