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Having a problem with my GK 400RB combo.

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by skankinrabbit, Jan 22, 2003.


  1. skankinrabbit

    skankinrabbit

    Aug 26, 2000
    I play bass with a ska band called Driver Friendly. The band is pretty loud, what with the hornline and everything. Anyways, I've got a Gallien-Kruger 400RB combo - the one with 275 watts through a 15" speaker. My problem is, when I turn it up loud enough to gig with the band, it gets a kind of gross splatty sound. I'm not turning it up all the way, I have the master and the volume controls both at about 5, and I get these gross splatty type sounds. When the amp is turned down lower, it sounds great, but once I turne it up, pretty gross. This really can't go on since we gig almost every weekend, and it really gets on my nerves. My question is, is this a problem with my amp not having enough wattage, or do I just need maybe another cab to combine with the 15". I'm really a guitarist, so bass amps can confuse and scare me... Any help is really greatly appreciated. I have about $1000 that I could spend on a rig, but I really don't want to spend that much... especially if all I need is maybe another cabinet.

    One more thought I had on this - I have a Yamaha 660 powered mixer that the band doesn't use. It has two 300 watt amps. Would it sound okay if I were to buy a big subwoofer (I saw a yamaha 18" sub in the Musicians Friend catalog) and use the XLR outputs (or maybe the line outputs) on my GK to send it through the PA and from there through the sub? Then maybe I could use my actual amp as a moniter and use the PA to power the sound I send into the club. I asked some people about this, but they said that it probably wouldn't sound very good.

    Anyways, any help is greatly appreciated. If you have suggestions as to what I should do or what kind of gear I should get to fix my problem... I will be forever indebted. Thank you very much!
     
  2. skankinrabbit

    skankinrabbit

    Aug 26, 2000
    hmmmm.... yeah, just checked out the GK website, and it's 240 watts at 4 ohms but 150 at 8.... great....

    So what would be a good choice of a rig that might do the job for under $1000? Fortunately and unfortunately the band is only getting more serious and gigging more often, so I really need to resolve this problem. My whole idea with the power mixer would not work would it? Anyways.... the instrumentation of my band is of course drums, a guitarist who plays through a Crate Excaliber head and a 4x12 halfstack, a vocalist, and 2 trombones and a trumpet. Any suggestions on what would be an adequate and somewhat cheap rig would be greatly appreciated.
     
  3. skankinrabbit

    skankinrabbit

    Aug 26, 2000
    I can get to Guitar Center to try out stuff. I live near Houston, so I'm sure there are more music stores. By 350-400 watts, do you mean 350-400 at 8 ohms? I looked through my Musicians Friend catalog last night, and there was an Ampeg SVT head that had something like 350 watts for about $650, maybe I could find a used one of those and some used cabs.....
     
  4. skankinrabbit

    skankinrabbit

    Aug 26, 2000
  5. skankinrabbit

    skankinrabbit

    Aug 26, 2000
    Hmmmm, I should have specified that I really have no idea what ohms are all about.... 100 watts at 4 ohms just as loud as 100 watts at 8 ohms? What's the difference.


    Also, thanks for all the help... as I said earlier, I am a guitar player and this stuff confuses me.
     
  6. ThunderStik

    ThunderStik Guest

    Jun 25, 2001
    Claremore OK.
    Ohms are the rated impedance (resistance) of the cabs. What this means is basically the higher the resistance the less power the amp can push into a speaker.

    Most amps nowdays are good at least down to a minimum of 4 ohms and some are good down to 2.
    1- 8 ohm cab + 1-8 ohm cab = 4 ohms total resistance. 1-4ohm cab + 1-4ohm cab = 2 ohms total.

    If there is less resistance (impedance) the amp can push more power. Right now your amp is capable of 240 watts but only at 4 ohms, since you have an 8 ohm load you are only getting 150 watts ( because of the higher load).

    So if you have an amp that is capable of going down to 2 ohms then you can buy 2-4 ohm cabs and get full power out of the amp. If your minimum is 4 ohms you can buy 2-8 ohm cabs or 1-4 ohm cab to get full power. I hope this is clear enough.

    I would try to get around 600 watts at least but this is just me. Horn sections are loud and it takes a good bit of power to produce the bass.

    Personally I would loose the combo and get a good powerfull head and a couple of good cabs and be done with it. People have been getting great results with Avatar cabs and they are priced really good. I would trade in the combo and get a head and order some Avatar cabs or some good used cabs. Wow to much info. sorry


    EDIT Josh beat to the punch.
     
  7. skankinrabbit

    skankinrabbit

    Aug 26, 2000
    no no... not too much information :D . I need all the info I can get. So this brings up a couple more questions - what's a good head. I'm going to have around $1000 to play with, but of course I'd like to spend as little as possible, but right now I'm thinking this is going to take the majority, if not all and a little more, of the thousand. What are some good powerful heads, and also what are some good powerful heads that I might be able to find used? With a head, I'll buy what I think is the best that I can afford over maybe one that I might be able to find easier used, but if I could find a good one used, that would be awesome. You mentioned Avatar cabs, so I'll look into those. Basically, if anyone has some suggestions as to what would be a good rig for me for around 1000, that would be much appreciated. Meanwhile, I'll try and search for past suggestions


    Also, how much do you think I could get for a used but still in good condition GK 400RB-III. Cosmetically, it's still in good condition. I have used it to gig, though, so there's a kinda dimple about in the middle of the grill, nothing big, and I think there's some gum or something stuck on the bottom - on one of the plastic corners. I'll probably try and scrape that off before I sell... Other than that it's really in almost new condition. It's 2 years old, I've gigged with it probably 15 times, but nowhere really crazy or anything.I think it sounds really good.. until you turn it up too much.


    And my last question - what is the advantage of 8 ohms over 4 ohms? Sound quality or something? Or is there any?

    Also, if it's worth anything for amp suggestions, the bass I play is a Fender Marcus Miller Jazz Bass.

    Once again, thanks everybody for helping me out on this :) !
     
  8. ThunderStik

    ThunderStik Guest

    Jun 25, 2001
    Claremore OK.
    Skank,

    I like the GK 1001rb and 2001rb. The 2001 has 1000 watts and good sound to boot and is about $1200 bux. The 1001 has 540 watts and also sounds good and is about $750 bux. The carvin R1000 has 1000 watts and is around $650 bux but im not big on the sound. Im not sure what these go for on the used market but you can check out bassgear.com and harmony central for used gear.

    You could go with separates which for me was cheaper. I bought an ampeg svp-pro preamp for $290 and a carvin dcm 1500 watt power amp for about $400 , so now for $700 I have a 1500 watt head that sounds great and power o' plenty. You would have to buy a rack but thats no big deal.

    For me the theory is get as much power as you can. There is no advantage in sound in 4 or 8 ohms, just the available options.
     
  9. ThunderStik

    ThunderStik Guest

    Jun 25, 2001
    Claremore OK.
    Dig it dude, Dig it.:D Can I use that phrase?:D
     
  10. skankinrabbit

    skankinrabbit

    Aug 26, 2000
    Hmmm, here's the link for my amp new at Samash - http://www.samash.com/catalog/showi...&Search_Type=SEARCH&GroupCode=nonetodaythanks

    They ask for $750, which I think is what I paid for mine.... so 75% of that would be $560 and 66% would be $495, so it sounds like I could probably get a good $500 for my amp.... so that would actually raise my budget to 1500 for a new rig.... although I really can't go very long without an amp, so that might be a problem. Thanks for the continued help, guys, I'll post back here if I have more questions, or if you guys have more suggestions bring'em on!
     
  11. skankinrabbit

    skankinrabbit

    Aug 26, 2000
    oh, Thunderstick, your mention of power amps gave me another question - is there much of a difference in sound between power amps through the same pre-amp, or is it just a quality issue between brands? I might look into doing something along those lines.
     
  12. ThunderStik

    ThunderStik Guest

    Jun 25, 2001
    Claremore OK.
    There are slight sound differences from brand to brand but not night and day in my experience.