Hartke Kickback series

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Jeff2287, Jun 24, 2003.

  1. Jeff2287


    May 4, 2002
    Hello once again. As I've mentioned before, I'm in search of a good bass amp, and I'm interested in a Hartke Kickback. My only delema is the fact that there are three types which all give 120 watts and the only difference I've spotted so far is that some are heavier than others.
    What exactly are the differences between the Kickback 10, 12, and 15? Would there be any disadvantage to getting a 10 (the lightest) as opposed to getting a 15 (the heaviest)?

  2. craigb

    craigb Supporting Member

    I've not played the Hartkes but have been pretty much exclusively using similar combos from Genz Benz over the last few years.

    They may all have the same wattage but they aren't going to move the same amount of air and handle lower frequencies the same way.

    In general the larger the speaker the better it handles low notes (very general rule of thumb - you have to look at the actual speakers/boxes being used to be sure but it's probably a good rule for this set of 3 Hartke combos). So if you are playing a 5 or 6 string (or a 4 strung BEAD) then you probably want the 15".

    It will also depend on how you want to use it. If you are playing thrash rock with a couple of guitarists with 100W half stacks then actually none of these is going to cut it. If you are playing quietly with acoustic instruments then probably any of the three can deal with it. I did house parties with a 135W 1x12 combo and while I had to push it a bit it held its own with a couple of guitar half stacks because we kept the volume reasonable. It got much better after I moved to a 200W 1x12 combo.

    Play them all at the volume you are going to need and see which one sounds best to you.
  3. Size of speakers influence you're sound greatly. A 10" speaker is smaller, and will have better response in high registers and when you play down low it will give you a really punchy sound, that is if a single 10" speaker will get loud. Usually when you have 10" speakers you usually want 2 of them if you plan on cranking. If you play anything with a low B I'd get the 15" or the 12". I've only played through the KB15's, but it had excellent low end response, but the aluminum cone made it 'sound' like a 12", good upper registers, while being able to handle a low B quite well... Basically in a combo amp with a single speaker in it, you're going to want a 15. It will be louder in this case. The kickback 15 is a great little combo. In my opinion it's hartke's finest combo despite their attempts with sticking the 3500 head in their 4 10" speaker cab:D... It's a great 'combo' amp which will suit smaller gigs, and it has a Direct Out to run into a PA system for larger gigs. Very punchy amps for the price. basically the larger the speaker, the better the lowend and in some cases more volume for a single speaker. I'm just generalizing though. You want the 12 or 15 if you plan to play with anyone, the 10 will bottom out faster.
  4. tboyd


    Sep 10, 2002
    The Woodlands, TX
    What they said.

    They all sound different. I tested all three of them. I liked the 12 the best, so that's what I bought.
  5. inazone


    Apr 20, 2003
    ditto above. i bought the kickback 12. great little amp. i use it for practice and small gigs (restaurants, etc). it doesnt sond good with my modulus, but sounds good with my fender and tobias. all of wich are 5 and 6 strings. try you bass through them cos it will affect how it sounds and how much you can turn up. im going to sell mine to get a ampeg ba112. only cos it has a rca input so i could practice with a cd and use headphones. the hartke has a di and headphones but not the rca. good luck.
  6. ZonPlyr


    Apr 29, 2003
    Pasadena, CA
    ditto, ditto. I played all 3 and bought the 12. I love it. Something about that 12 in that enclosure just sounds great. I play 4 and 5 string through it plus my upright and i've never had a problem with it. Great little amp. And there is something to be said about only having to make 1 trip from the car to the venue.
  7. I have a kickback 10.
    I also tried all three and all three sound quite different. The good news is the 10 is under 35lbs while both the 12 and 15 are around 45-50lbs and fits in the smallest car trunk.
    The 10 sounds great at lower volumes and is really punchy. However the tone becomes farty and nondistinct at volumes over 5 or when using lower notes (below and E on the B-string. I foound the volume loud enough for a good jam session but borderline for a 2 guiatr situation.
    I tried the 12 and its handled the B better as well as louder volumes, it was not a punchy as the 10. The 15 sounded... well... alright, but not my cup of tea.
    i would recommend you take you bass in and test them out. The 140 watts is plenty loud for home practice and a small band situation
  8. It's 120 watts. The 1415 combo is 140 watts:rolleyes: geez get it right you miserable lil' ...