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Good Electric and DB head

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by .matthew e wengerd., Feb 24, 2006.

  1. I'm looking a two used heads right now:

    Ashdown ABM 500 (tolex-style)

    Mesa Walkabout

    I play DB and electric (6 and 4) primarily Jazz and funk with the occasional broadway-style. I have an Accugroove Tri110 (not the 'L').

    Can anyone give me comparisons/advice? I've done plenty of searching, but would like some help. ps - I've played both, but not recently or through my cab.
  2. I got a PM stating what I thought I already knew - the MESA won't cut it. I'm in line for the AI focus in the classifieds. how does it handle electric?
  3. KJung

    KJung Supporting Member

    Check out the AI comments on the DB thread... very nice, but sounds better with some pickups than others. We did an A/B test with a DB with a Realist pickup, and it was not a good thing.... literally no definition. However, it gets much better reviews with other pickups.

    Seems like a nice match with the Accugroove cab.

    The previous Focus (series II) and new one (seriesIII) sound very similar IMO. The Focus definitely will put out enough volume for even loud gigs with EB, but I've found it lacking somewhat in the punch and definition area versus other more traditionally designed heads. Also, the tone controls have very little impact on the tone of that head.... but its 'flat' sound is very nice. However, for your playing requirements described above... I think it would be very good.

    There were a lot of positive comments on it for electric at the recent Bowlus hang.... however, we were in a confined space... lot's of things sounded very different to me there than my experience with them on a gig.

    That all being said, its a great little head... loud, warm, stupid small and light, and reasonably priced. It just seems to be lacking that 250 hz 'kick you in the chest' thing that some other heads have (Thunderfunk, Eden, etc.)... however, given the size a and weight... just amazing, and one of the few heads that really seems to work with both DB and EB.
  4. tombowlus

    tombowlus If it sounds good, it is good Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2003
    Fremont, Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    Yes, the Focus I (Series III) really surprised us all on electric at the GTG. I was quite impressed.

    Other heads which I have tried on both electric bass and upright (and which I would recommend for both) would be the Walter Woods Ultra, or any of the EA iAMP models.

  5. the_home

    the_home Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 14, 2005
    Pensacola, FL
    Phil Jones Bass amps are very hi-fi and do well on both slab and upright. I use a Briefcase for smaller venue gig on both.
  6. tombowlus

    tombowlus If it sounds good, it is good Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2003
    Fremont, Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    Good point. Up to its volume limits, the Briefcase sounds great on both electric and upright.

  7. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL
    just fine. i've gigged with one for a few months, until i realized i need more EQ options. but if you're a plug 'n play kinda guy who mostly uses his/her bass' onboard EQ, then you're golden w/ the Focus. lightweight, and incredibly powerful for its small size.