Good deal on SVT-VR... Pull the trigger?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by gregouille23, Sep 22, 2017.

  1. Hi,

    A shop around here is having a great deal on the SVT-VR. Basically, they sell it new for about 1750 euros instead of 2500 euros. For reference, a new Ampeg V4B is about 1250 euros around here.

    I am quite happy with my current rig (Mesa walkabout head + Barefaced Super Compact), but this is quite tempting... I have never actually had the chance the play an SVT (will try to do so though). This is still no cheap amp (+it requires carrying around of a 40kgs head :D) so I am wondering if I should jump on this offer despite being fine with my current rig...

    Also, I won't be able to use the SC cab unless I add a second one as it's rated 8 ohm... Which is nice, but gets quite expensive :D So I would be considering a cab to pair with the SVT, like the SVT212av.

    I play in a rock/classic rock cover band. At home I play a bit of everything: funk/pop/R&B.

    Any comment/advise welcome!

    Wisebass and High Camp like this.
  2. I looked at the manual, and you are correct in that they don't seem to have any option in the speaker chart for an 8 Ohm load.
    I don't know why they would do that. I'm sure there must be a good reason. Personally, I would not want such a beast.
    Lvjoebass and gregouille23 like this.
  3. cardinal


    Jan 13, 2016
    Of course play it and see what you think, but also pick it up. I knew SVTs were heavy but was stunned by just how heavy they feel.

    Honestly I'd probably recommend you not get it because it seems like something you don't actually want. It just seems to be a good deal, but still is expensive and now you're thinking of spending even more on a new cab. If you have the money, then of course go for it and enjoy. Otherwise, I would save the money for something you really want.
  4. Because the output transformer doesn't have an 8 ohm tap., SVT's have been like that since they were brand new in 1969. I would jump on that head, nothing sounds as good as those, just get a 4 ohm cab somewhere or another 8 ohm cab and parallel them. I have posted this often but I'm 64 and have been lugging SVT's since 1976, so in other words don't worry about the weight, just get a good two wheeler. Nothing compares to an SVT especially with the 8 x 10 cab.
    Rugmaster and gregouille23 like this.
  5. Yes I am not too worried about the weight. I guess trying it is the best way to know for sure if it works for me or not ;)
    bobyoung53 likes this.
  6. beans-on-toast


    Aug 7, 2008
    :laugh: Good one. Wait till you have to lift one.

    But with that weight comes an awesome sound. Try one with the right speaker cab before you dive in. Start with the tone settings at noon (flat EQ, tone boost switches off), boost the bass and treble a bit. It won’t take you long to see what it can do.

    The amp can run with an 8ohm cab. This is at the expense of a bit less power and a slightly different sound because of the impedance mismatch.
    Bent77, bobyoung53 and gregouille23 like this.
  7. cardinal


    Jan 13, 2016
    For the record I have an SVT-II and a 810 and serious OMG the sound is great. But that doesn't necessarily mean you actually want to buy the VR just because it's a good deal.
    gregouille23 likes this.
  8. Are you sure about that? I've seen everywhere mentioned it runs at 2 or 4 ohm.
  9. Well not just because of that but also because I heave heard some good things about the SVT and enjoyed the demos I heard :D
    bobyoung53 likes this.
  10. The_Janitor


    Jun 30, 2012
    Madison, Wi
    Don't people ever get tired of complaining about the weight of an amp they don't own?

    People with back problems/medical issues aside: just because 75-85 pounds feels like the weight of small truck to you, don't assume that everyone else isn't capable of moving it.

    I'm 37, in far-from-optimal shape, own two 80+ lbs head and move them around with ease all of the time. Gigs, practices, up and down stairs, the works. It's not that hard.

    If I don't feel like carrying one of them (for example, wintertime in Wisconsin means ice on the ground, which can be tricky) I have collapsible hand truck that cost me $20.00 at Harbor Freight. Even easier.

    It seems like not one mention of an SVT can go by on this site without at least one person saying something about the weight. It's not that hard.

    OP, get the SVT. No way in hell you'll regret it.
    Wisebass, Arrow, High Camp and 8 others like this.
  11. beans-on-toast


    Aug 7, 2008
    Just to be clear. The amp is designed to run on 2 and 4 ohms. That is what Ampeg specifies, they don’t recommend that the amp be operated with an impedance mismatch. The warranty requires that you operate the amp as per the manual.

    Having said that, people do operate the amp with an 8 ohm cab on the 4 ohm tap and like the sound. The amp has proven that it can take this impedance mismatch. It does affect the performance of the amp.
    gregouille23 likes this.
  12. paparoof


    Apr 27, 2011
    fEARful koolaid drinker
    Get the SVT. It is the standard by which all other bass amp are (and should be) measured. Gig it for long enough to get used to it. You will then be properly prepared to judge other all amps that you come across.

    Mostly: "well this amp is lighter, but it doesn't sound as good."
    gregouille23 likes this.
  13. beans-on-toast


    Aug 7, 2008
    Having spent many years bouncing heavy gear around, I can tell you that it can take a toll and lead to back issues down the road. Those that express concerns are speaking from experience and do not want to see others suffer as they do.

    Having said that, if you lift properly with you legs, keep your back straight, use a cart or a dolly, and get some help when lifting a heavy head on top of an 810, exercise you muscles in a balanced way, you can go a long way in mitigating back issues such as slipped disks and sciatica down the road.

    I still have heavy amps including a vintage SVT and V4B as well as heavy cabs, not to mention a Hammond organ and Leslie cabinets. Now that I’m a lot older, I also have serious back issues that result from years of heavy lifting. I wouldn’t wish the associated cronic pain on anyone.

    Lifting is not that hard, as you said. Many have the physical strength. It is the long term damage to your body that it causes.

    Now, I’m older and wiser. I have help.
  14. cardinal


    Jan 13, 2016
    Fair enough. I like to think I'm in good shape but fact is the 85 pound SVT is more than half my weight, but that's not true for everyone.

    But honestly none of it is hard to move with the proper stuff like a hand truck if you need it.
  15. Coolhandjjl


    Oct 13, 2010
    A 400 lb Hammond? Great Ceaser's Ghost!!
  16. ELG60


    Apr 26, 2017
    I'm with you, man. 57yo, and still lift weights regularly. I have a 71 SVT and even though I can lift it, I'd much rather lift my GK mb800 Fusion at 2kg and 800watts. There are techniques to use which can minimize potential damage but if you don't have to risk it, why do so?

    Still, the SVT is an iconic beast and every bass player should own one at least once. There's nothing quite like it.
  17. beans-on-toast


    Aug 7, 2008

    48F949E5-0CA6-4FDD-813D-269DEC39A8C5.jpeg 9A56C213-E92F-488A-B7FF-48A86EF91DE1.jpeg BE124A5A-A494-44C8-8CB1-72D14354A133.jpeg

    Or get the groupies to help.
  18. The_Janitor


    Jun 30, 2012
    Madison, Wi
    Haha, yeah I am a bit of a fatass so that factors in.

    I also spent years working in warehouses moving heavy stuff around all day so the proper lift and carry techniques are second nature at this point.
    gregouille23 likes this.
  19. I was in same position. ... was going to get the VR... love that amp. Got recommended that I try the Fender Super Bassman.
    Had a Super Bassman now for 5 yrs. It'll do all the VR will do, is 20lbs lighter and has a 2nd channel with sweepable mid frequency and blendable overdrive.
    Like I said, I was all set to buy the VR. .. I still love the VR but that extra 20..... made a lotta difference to me
    I love the Super Bassman tis a beast!
  20. J-Bassomatic


    Mar 30, 2017
    Canton OH
    I don't know what it is but that Rumble 500 head gets heavier every time I lift it.:laugh:
    Another go-for-it vote from a former SVT owner, there really is nothing like them.
    Lvjoebass and gregouille23 like this.