Hartke vs. Ashdown

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by McHaven, Nov 24, 2005.

  1. McHaven


    Mar 1, 2005
    So I'm looking to build a rig with preferably one of the heads offered from Avatar Speakers. I'm going to get a 212 from Avatar and I'm looking at either the Ashdown MAG300 or the Hartke 3500.

    I've only had experience with the Hartke. I played it in a local shop while I was comparing it to a Yorkville XS400H. The Hartke sounded alot better at high volumes I think. The Yorkville just got boomy.

    I've never played an Ashdown amp so my experience with the MAG is zero but I've heard all the good things people on TB have to say.

    I play in a classic rock trio with a guitarist who uses a Carvin Legacy Combo but he's lookin to add another cab to it. I like my sound to have plenty of bass but still be defined and punch you in the chest if need be. I don't slap, I normally play fingerstyle but use a pick if I'm chording. So help me out here, list your experience with either head or what have you.
  2. Cougar207


    Jun 17, 2005
    St. Charles, MO
    I have an Avatar 210 and a Mag 300. I have never played anything by Hartke, but the Ashdown is a great amp. Good tone, useful features, and quite a bit of power for it’s price. I based my decision on the reviews here as well and I’m glad I listened. You can use the dealer locater on their site to see if there is a dealer near you. I couldn’t find one near me though.

  3. I've tried both of these.

    The Ashdown kills the Hartke, hands down. Both with features and sound and it costs less! I own the MAG 300 Head and run it through the MAG 410 cab. I'm only pushing about 180 watts (as i wasnt aware the ohms didnt match) its still super loud and sounds great. I will hopefully soon get the MAG 210 and MAG 115 to bring out the full 300 watts and start blowing things off the wall. Ashdown all the way.

    The Hartke isn't a bad amp though, its just that the Ashdown is an incredible amount of bang for the buck.
  4. McHaven


    Mar 1, 2005
    I've been leaning towards the Ashdown just haven't gotten a chance to play it, mainly due to price.

    I notice in your sig you say you have a fretless T-bird. I've never seen a fretless one. Could you PM me some pics?
  5. No you misread, I dont have a fretless Tbird, I have GAS for a fretless Tbird. Whats in my signature is my gas list, sadly, look in my profile for my gear list.
  6. mahrous


    Aug 13, 2005
    ashdown kills hartke!

    i have the MAG300 as well and its way better than any Hartke in a similar price range. you cant beat 300watts for that price
  7. McHaven


    Mar 1, 2005
    Oh, haha whoops, I ought to read more closely next time.
  8. pj-mike


    Nov 22, 2005
    Bridgewater, MA
    I cant comment on the Hartke, but the Ashdown can produce exactly the tone you describe. Deep with punch in the chest clarity.

    I'm using a MAG300-115 combo, playing similar music, using finger style.
  9. Aj*


    Jun 14, 2005
    West Yorkshire, UK
    Sorry but feature wise the Hartke spanks the Ashdown. It's an incredibly flexible amp, I'd have to admit I have regrets about the Hartke Transporter cab I have though, I may be picking up a second head very soon and I doubt the aluminium cones will suit it. Stick a new valve in the pre and you'll get warmth if you so desire. The EQ is reasonably good, the fan is a bit loud for quiet sessions but not too bad. It's a reasonable head for a reasonable price, that'd be my verdict, I plan on keeping my HA3500 as a backup for the forseeable future.
  10. specplyrz

    specplyrz Inactive

    Nov 11, 2005
    Well, my two cents worth...I had the Hartke 5500. I LOVED that head. Tube preamp...mosfet power amp and all the tone blending/shaping you could wish for. Unfortunatly two seperate 810 Hartke bottoms were delivered damageg and I got fed up sold, the head and got Ampeg. I am right now selling all Ampeg gear...horrible quality control, and will be going back to Hartke.
  11. JayAmel

    JayAmel Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2002
    Carcassonne, France
    My $0.02 on this.

    I use an Ashdown MAG-300R with a MAG-210T cab.
    Some time ago, I wanted to try something different, and a Hartke rig came into my basement : HA5500 head + 410XL cab.

    There are probably Hartke oficionados here and I fully respect them, but the Hartke didn't seduce me at all. Whatever I did, there always was too much treble. And the Hartke rig didn't appear to be louder than my Ashdown rig, though supposed to have twice the watts.

    I believe the Hartke will be your thing if you're after some kind of modern / slap / treble tone. But if you want some balls in the lows and mids, then the Ashdown will probably fit you better.

    Just my opinion, of course.
  12. specplyrz

    specplyrz Inactive

    Nov 11, 2005
    cool..thanks for the input
  13. JayAmel

    JayAmel Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2002
    Carcassonne, France

    Don't know what tone you're after, but if you're selling your Ampeg stuff for reliability reasons, then I believe you should consider Ashdown. They sound close to Ampeg solid state amps (ya know, that kind of vintage vibe). Also I wish to share that this small ridiculous MAG-210T cab handles my low B pretty damn well (Music Man SUB 5 & StingRay 5).

    The only thing is that if you like some kind of crispy highs, then there are better amps for that (not very clear highs on my rig).

    Hope this helps,
  14. Keeaumoku


    Dec 29, 2004
    Exactly the reason I bought an ABM500-RC Evo-II! Ashdown is a great company, too. I had an issue, which I had to deal with them on a direct basis. I'm in Hawaii, they are in Jolly Old England, and they took care of me like real pros! Took awhile, due to them being half-way around the planet from me, but problem was solved, and I'm happy! :hyper:
  15. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD
    Play the Yorkville through a non-Ampeg cab, and I promise it won't be boomy!!! :spit: