Help Me, I Need a New Rig!!!

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by cjgallen, Jun 9, 2002.

  1. cjgallen


    Oct 19, 2001
    Here's my first rig:

    Ibanez GSR100
    Ibanez Sound Wave 25

    Impressive huh?

    Well for a graduation/birthday present I got a Fender Active Jazz Bass V, and I quickly realized how incredibly weak and crappy my rig is.

    So now I need a real amp to go with my first real bass, and you have no idea how much time I've spent searching these forums for advice and clues on what I should get (Only one search every 20 seconds!?!? AHHH!!!).

    "So, Chris, what kind of sound do you want?"

    EXCELLENT QUESTION! One band that I'm in is a straight up rock band (sorta like Incubus, but not anywhere near as good), and I worship Incubus, BTW. In my other band, the guitarist tunes CGCFAD (in other words, I use my B string a lot), and the singer screams/raps and occasionally sings. It's kind of like SOAD/Deftones, and some of the guitar riffs sound like old school Metallica.

    When we practice, I got my amp on full blast (sounds like crap), and I'm barely able to cut through the drums/guitar/vocals. I need something not only for our practice sessions, but also for small to medium gigs (clubs/bars/lounges, not fields and stadiums yet).

    So.......I need a good head and a cab or two. I was thinking a 1x15 (for b string thump) and later adding a 2x10 or a 4x10.

    As for heads, all I know is that I need to overpower my cabs (not cranking the volume to high though), rather than over stressing my amp (I heard the term underpowering, but you guys seemed to dislike it ;) ).

    I'd like to keep the head and 1x15 under $1,000, but depending on how much I get working this summer, I may have a little more (although I want to have some money left over :D ). I have no problem with buying used (but I don't know where to look for used stuff). I also like a high quality to cost ratio.

    Please don't tell me to "Try them for yourself." I'd like to try stuff out, but the only places locally are a pawn shop loaded with Crate and Rouge stuff, and a music store that doesn't carry anything. There's good stores in this general area, but I don't have the time to drive an hour just to look at amps. I'll probably start spending in early August.


    I need a head and a 1x15.

    I need a head that will give me lots of headroom for a 1x15 and later a 2x10 or 4x10.

    I need a 15 that gets loud (but not muddy).

    Budget = $1,000

    Bang for Buck = Good

    Quality/Reliability = Good

    Give me lots of specific models, numbers, and specs like ohms, watts, decibels, and dollars. I like numbers. Also personal experiences too.

    Thank you so very much in advance!
  2. boomerang

    boomerang Guest

    Dec 9, 2001
    Peavey. Shop Used.

  3. Nick man

    Nick man

    Apr 7, 2002
    Tampa Bay
    Id go for a 4-10" before a 1-15" sine the 15 cant handle as much power usually.

    Check out 2-12" cabs.

    If you gotta get the 15 first, get one with a tweeter.

    Nemesis by Eden combos are a great value for the money, and even the 10's handle the lows great (this is commimg from the owner of a 2-15" cab).

    I also agree that used Peavey is great value.

  4. Hmmm. Well, first of all, buying used can be a little risky if you don't know that much about gear. I would strongly encourage you to start watching the "musical equipment: amplifiers" section on e-bay. Consider all this "window shopping" as an education on what various amplifiers are going for. That way, if you run across a deal somewhere, you'll be more likely to recognize it. Don't buy anything there unless you find a legitimate person/dealer with lots of good feedback. I wouldn't just send a check to some bozo I don't know.

    Having gotten that out of the way, I think you can put together a pretty respectable system for a grand, if you shop carefully. You could probably put together a nice, brand new rig for that. For example, the Ampeg B2R goes for about $550 at American Musical Supply or Musician's Friend, and that's probably not the best deal you could find. 350 watts, and you've still got $450 for a speaker cab. I think the Carvin R600 is about the same price (maybe 560 or 570). 600 watts bridged into mono. Those are ordered direct from the company. (See their web site.)

    I agree that a nice 212 cab would be a good choice, but you're not likely run across a good used one. The SWR 12Pack (see the web site) is a 212 cab w/o a tweeter, but it would probably work for you. They list for about $700, but if you find an SWR dealer who'll deal with you, you might be able to get it for around $500 (since they don't have to stock it). That puts you a little over, but not much. Another idea would be to check out the Avatar web site for speaker cabs. This is another company that sells direct over the internet at really good prices. I think they sell a single 15 cab for, like $199, with really nice components (eminence speakers, I think, the same ones that a lot of other companies use). I think their 210 is the same price, so you could get a new head AND a 115 cab AND a 210 for the price point you're talking about.

    Good hunting and congrats on the new axe!
  5. two words: trace elliot
    i'm in a metal band and it's all i ever need i've got the 1215 combo (1x15) with the 1153 extention cab (also 1x15) and it holds my low b like no bodies business
  6. The problem with recommending Trace Elliott is that the company's going out of business. This presents a good news/bad news kind of situation. The good news is, if you want a TE amp, go to the Musician's Friend website and buy 'em NOW, because they're going really, really cheap, according to others on this board. The bad news is, if you won't have your cash until Aug., they'll probably be impossible to find by then.

    Sunn is in the same situation, by the way. Fender bought 'em, and has now closed out the line. If you find a dealer who is closing them out, you might be able to pick up a nice amp at 70% off or so. This would put something like the 1200 in your price range (which it normally wouldn't be). That thing pushes 1200 watts into 2 ohms. There are people who drive FOUR 8x10 cabs with these things. Yeeooowww! Of course, there's no way a 1200 and four 8x10's would fit into your budget (or even one, probably). But you could get a smaller cab and plan on upgrading in the future. And if you ever did get that sort of system put together... well, the metalheads would think you were a GOD. And, I mean, c'mon... What's THAT worth to 'ya?;)
  7. I agree on the Avatar cabs. I have the B115 with the B210 on order, due in on Thursday. The B115 just feels effortless to me. A huge flow of creamy low end. The B210 should add the punch to the rig that I want.

    My G-K 400RB is sweet. A new 400RB-III is $490 at Musicians Friend right now. And there are four 800RB's on eBay right now for that price or less.

    A great sounding rig for under a grand. For your budget, it's my recommendation. And I'd go for the used 800RB, given the choice. If and when you decided to upgrade, you'll probably get just about what you paid for it as a private or eBay sale.


  8. cjgallen


    Oct 19, 2001
    Thanks, you guys have been extremely helpful!

    The Avatar speakers are just too good of a deal to pass up, plus I've read some really good things about them (some bad too, oh well :rolleyes: ). Definitely the B210 and B115.

    For the head, I think I'm gonna go for the Carvin R1000. Lots of power, and lots of features.

    I was talking to my guitarist, and he seems to think that 100 watts is plenty of power for him. With the R1000 I would easily destroy him :D .

    Brand new, this comes out to about $1150 (lots of S/H), and it seems like I'll be working more days this summer than I had originally thought, so I'll have some extra cash to maybe get a nice rack started.

    Now what to do with my old Ibanez junk....
  9. Pre EB

    Pre EB

    Mar 15, 2002
    Denton, Tx
    Hey man, that close to Austin and you should be able to find some sweet used gear! There should be some good pawn shops and of course, the shops like Guitar Resurection. There is even a guy there ( can't remember the name but advertises in Bass Player) that deals with high end gear.
    Just looked it up- Austin Bass Traders. I talked to him when I was looking for a preamp. He seems like a purist (ultra-picky), but maybe he could help you with your search for quality used gear at a good price. He's by appt. only but worth a shot!
    good luck,
  10. steve-o

    steve-o Guest

    Apr 17, 2002
    if intrested. i have a hartke 2000 head
    and a fender 15 for sale in the classifieds.

  11. ldiezman


    Jul 11, 2001
    don't count on being overpowering.. a 100 watt guitar amp will be able to keep up with many bass amps rated 3 or 4 times as much.. sad but true..

    I would not recommend getting a 1x15 cab at first.. if you just are using one cab for now. get a 210, 2x12 or a 4x10. avater speakers seem like a pretty good deal.. I haven't played them. but I've heard they are pretty good.
  12. steve-o

    steve-o Guest

    Apr 17, 2002
    why does everyone frown on 15's?
    i love them!

  13. Nick man

    Nick man

    Apr 7, 2002
    Tampa Bay
    I love 15" speakers, my main cab is a custom built 2-15" bass cab, but I agree with them that the 10"s should come first.

    4-10"s put out a lot more volume and can handle alot more power than a single 15". Besides you'll strain the 15" more than you would the 10"s.

    2-10"s compared to 1-15", I dont see a major volume difference, but I does seem to handle more power better (less distortion).

    Just my 2 cents.

  14. steve-o

    steve-o Guest

    Apr 17, 2002
    power handaling as in watts?
    my single 15 can handle 600 watts rms!
    and distortion i belive is from the amp.
    just my 2 cents

  15. Nick man

    Nick man

    Apr 7, 2002
    Tampa Bay

    I belive the Carvins I have In my 2-15" cab are rated the same.

    But what about those 10"s?

    You get tqo tens rated at 400 watts a piece, and you can end up with an 800 watt cab.

    Thats what I was pointing out.

  16. I think your choice of the R 1000 and the 115+210 Avatar cabs is a good one.With the R 1000 you will have the power to expand if the 115-210 doesn't get loud enough,but I don't think that will happen.
    Good choice
  17. cjgallen


    Oct 19, 2001
    Hmm, I'm starting to think I should get the 2x10 first...

    Anyway, please check me to see if I'm wrong, but here's how I want to set this rig up:

    I'll get both cabs in 8ohms, use the bridge mode on the R1000, and hook up the cabs in parallel making it 4ohms, meaning I would be getting the full 1000 watts out of the head.

    This means each cab would draw 500 watts of power, right?

    Does this seem like it would work well, or should I set it up some other way? The B210 can handle 600 watts, and the B115 can take 400 watts, so it seems like it would match pretty close.

    Please correct me if I'm completely wrong, as I am still new to all this amp stuff.
  18. Well if you figure your budget is $1000 how 'bout this:

    Carvin DCM1000 power amp :$369 plus $20 shipping
    Sansamp RBI: Can be found for about $300 incl. shipping. That leaves you about $310 to put towards those Avatar cabs.

    I'm running this preamp/power amp setup and it's been great so far and it didn't break the bank.
  19. I am thinking about buying a new rig. I am in the same exact boat as you. Low on money, need power cause I can't get over drums/guitar/vocals, and need something for small gigs. I think i am gonna go for 4.5XL (4x10) Hartke Cab w/ H3500 Head. The total is around $1120. It's a decent price. Maybe you should check it out. But i would def. go for a 4x10 over a 1x15. It's all by preference though. Good Luck in whatever you decide to do.
  20. Eric Cioe

    Eric Cioe

    Jun 4, 2001
    Missoula, MT
    your rig is almost identical to mine... GK400RB (great, great head.. worth every penny) Avatar 2x10 (as of yesterday... so much PUNCH) and an SWR workingman's 1x15T (low end... good to C... but open B is floppy a bit)

    I love my rig overall. It gives me everything i need... until i trade the 15 for a Yamaha 1x18 sub and get a DCM600 :D