Got a new Hartke amp...we'll see!

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by ZuluFunk, Aug 7, 2001.

  1. ZuluFunk

    ZuluFunk Supporting Member

    Apr 14, 2001
    I just picked up a Hartke HA3500. I tried it at practice last night through an Ampeg 4x10 and a Peavey 15". It was in a small studio room and the speakers were crappy studio gear plus it got pretty loud in there so I'm not sure about the sound. It sounded OK while warming up. I liked it in the store through the Transporter 410 and a Fender 15. I'm going to gig it on Wed and Thu this week through an older ampeg 2x15 and a 2x12. If I'm not happy, I'm going to bring it back, wrapping and all, and move up to a nice 400 watt Trace Elliot they had for about $200 more. Or I'll exchange it for some speakers and start from scratch.

    I got the head for about $450 so I thougt it was a decent deal. It's got straight solid state and tube emulation that you can blend with separate pots, a "room" adjustment which is kind of like a presence knob, a parametric with (I think) 7 or 8 band, low and high pass knobs, and a compressor knob. It had nice tone for what I do. Plus the price was right. I think it will be enough fire power for me, I wanted to hold some cash in reserve so I wouldn't have to skimp too much on cabs (which will be next).

    Let me know what you think. I hear Hartke doesn't have a good rep here. Plus, it's the most common used head I see (which either means it sucks or it was over hyped and kids bought them only to return them for cash to support a drug habbit). My impression was that it was a little better then "good enough".
  2. the HA3500 actually has 1 preamp tube (12AX7?). You can blend SS and tube preamp.
  3. ZuluFunk

    ZuluFunk Supporting Member

    Apr 14, 2001
    WOW - I thought it was fakeola tube-sounding circuitry. Cool beans!
  4. Or WAS it the 12AX'cheapo'7?

  5. Richard Lindsey

    Richard Lindsey

    Mar 25, 2000
    Metro NYC
    No offense, but now that you went ahead and bought the amp, why does it matter what WE think? It's your money, what do YOU think? If you like it, that's all that matters.
  6. hyperlitem

    hyperlitem Guest

    Jul 25, 2001
    Indianapolis, IN
    naw keep it, its a pretty sweet amp. The only problem with this amp is if your playing throuigh a bad speaker cab it sounds bad, if yoiur playing through a good speaker cab it sounds amazing. I just got a hartke 7000, which is just 2 3500's. I really really like it. I'm playng through the transporter cab. I play alot of punk and such. it sounds great. Ive been told that this amp will make you sound like you really are. Like if you have a good bass, it will sound like your bass. I play through a spector right now so it sounds awesome. I reccomend keeping it, i never liked trace elliot, but whatever floats your boat. good luck with your new amp.
  7. Congrats on the 3500 ZuluFunk.

    I used one solid for nine years without any problems. Still use it as my back up and for home rehearsal.
    Nothing wrong with 3500’s, ( if you need the reassurance.)
    I’ve had better, but I’ve also had a lot worse, and they hold their own with much more expensive amps.
    My Mesa 400+ didn't get used as much as my Hartke during that period.
    And yes, the Mesa was better, but the 3500 was much lighter, cost nothing to maintain and was perfectly adequate for the job when used with a quality cab.

    Very good Amps.
  8. ZuluFunk

    ZuluFunk Supporting Member

    Apr 14, 2001
    Adequate was the term I was falling upon. I don't need a monster rig, but enough to fill up a room when needed and vary my tone from tune to tune. I'm not embarrassed or ashamed of getting the Hartke or anything. I'm just waiting to see how it works out. My first impressions in-store were very nice. I actually liked it better than more expensive heads through the same set up. My impression during rehearsal were OK, but we played very loud and I'm suspicious about the speakers.

    The problem I have with amps is "performance" Sure they all sound great in the store, but can the tone hold up? I tried to crank it in the shop but I didn't do it for very long.

    So, no offense taken. I just wanted to know if anyone thinks I was taken for a ride. I'd just like to know while I still have the option of returning it as new for an exchange.
  9. ZuluFunk

    ZuluFunk Supporting Member

    Apr 14, 2001
    Hartke 3500 Amplifier
    selectable tube & solid state preamps combine with a 10 band EQ, rotary bass & treble controls and adjustable compression
    350 watt @ 4 ohm (240 watts @ 8 ohm) amp head features active/passive inputs, balanced XLR line out, and effect send/return loop. rackmountable 2 rack space height and 13.5" deep list $619.99
  10. ZuluFunk,
    I should have said “More” than adequate in my last post.

    The way I discovered the 3500 was when my 400+ had to go back for repair after letting me down on its second gig. The store loaned me the 3500 and I used it though my Mesa speakers for about a month or so while waiting to get the 400+ back.

    To say I was pleased with the 3500 is an understatement, in fact I couldn’t let the store take it back and had to buy it.
    It wasn’t really intended at the time, but as I said, it got used more than the 400+ over the years because of its reliability, power and tones.
    Don’t want to start a war with anyone here regarding the 400+ as it is one of the best. Just trying to point out that although I could afford to use the best, I still loved the Hartke 3500.

    Have used it also with a pair of Hartke 410 & 115 XL’s & an Eden D15XLT and it also sounds great.
    If you link it up with a good cab or two, I’m sure you’ll want to keep this amp.
  11. ZuluFunk

    ZuluFunk Supporting Member

    Apr 14, 2001
    I appreciate the input. I could afford whatever I want but I'm trying to comply with a self-imposed budget on gear. For my amp and speakers, I'd like to stay under $1,200. The more I spend on an amp the less I spend on speakers. I'd like to get a 410 (maybe the Transporter) and a 15 or a 212, and a 15 or 2x15.

    I'm not up on signal processing so I would take recommendations on speaker setups suitable for the 3500.
  12. Personally I would stay clear of the Transporter series, but that’s just me. They don’t handle as much power and are not as strongly built as the XLseries.

    With the 3500, I’ve only tried my Mesa 1516BE 4 ohms full range multi cab, my Eden D215XLD 4 ohms, and Hartke 410XL coupled with the 115XL (each 8 ohms) so as to run the 3500 at it’s maximum rating at 4 ohms, but would recommend any of these cabs apart from the 115XL by itself, although fine when using with the 410XL.
    I also tried it with my now sold Ampeg 8x10, which also sounded very good, but for me a back breaker to get around.

    Would love to use my Mesa and Eden together, but it would put a 2 ohms strain on the amp, which would surely kill it.

    Of course there are plenty of other good cabs out there that I have no experience with, but I'm sure some of the guys here will let you know about them.
    Whatever you decide on, try to play cranked up though your own 3500, it’s small and light enough to take to the store.

    Good luck.
  13. ZuluFunk

    ZuluFunk Supporting Member

    Apr 14, 2001

    So if the 3500 is rated at 4ohms, I should run the equivalent of 4ohms (2 cabs each rated at 8 ohms).

    The Mesa and Eden with 4 ohms each, together would put a 2 ohm strain on the amp which is only rated for four.

    I guess I need to get the equivalent of no more than 4ohms. I would probably like a 210 or 212 and a 215 (all equaling 4ohms - right?).
  14. Yes, basically you’re locked into two 8 ohms or one 4 ohms cab. There are exceptions if you make up a serial lead, but it starts getting complicated. (Mikey D is the best person to answer this issue.)
    Most 2x15 cabs are 4 ohms, so you could only use the one cab.

    The best option IMO would be a full range cab like the Mesa 1516BE 4 ohms which has 115EV, 1x10, 2x6 and a bullet horn, or a 410 with 115, that way you could just use the 410 for smaller gigs. Can’t go wrong with Eden XLT’s or Mesa.

    What 210 & 212 cabs were you thinking of?
  15. ZuluFunk

    ZuluFunk Supporting Member

    Apr 14, 2001
    Some of my choices were:

    Epifani T-210
    Bag End D10BX-D 210
    David Eden 212XLT w/horn

    I also saw a Fender 210 with a horn I'd like to try too.
  16. Have fun choosing.
    Let us know what you get.
  17. oddentity

    oddentity Supporting Member

    Nov 20, 2000
    Nice choice, Zulu!

    I use a 3500 myself, through a Bag End S15-D. It sounds very punchy.

    I'm going to try and make it to your gig at the Nail tonight... depends on how late my band's rehearsal goes... If I don't see you, have fun!
  18. boogiebass


    Aug 16, 2000
    It's an OK amp. Won't get you to Eden or Boogie land but for the price, it does an adequate job. Does seem to be rather reliable. Roughly comparable to a GK800RB, I'd say, in that regard.
  19. ZuluFunk

    ZuluFunk Supporting Member

    Apr 14, 2001
    Odd...thanks for the consideration. Tonight I'll probably have it through an older Ampeg 2x15.
  20. BassBaron


    Jul 20, 2001
    San Jose, CA
    The 3500 is a great amp. I played mine through a the Transporter 410 for a couple years before I picked up a SWR Goliath II for 200 bones (!) The SWR definetely sounds punchier, but the Transporter is not so bad either, especially for the weight.