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Help! Need a Power Amp for Bass, Synths and more!

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Lorenzop, Jan 31, 2014.

  1. Lorenzop


    Oct 23, 2012
    Hi all
    I play keys, bass and synths. I need only for home playing and home/studio recording purposes.
    Finding a solution for cab and amp to fit them all is not easy but so far my conclusion is:

    Tone shaping will be done before any power amp with the gazillion of guitar/bass/etc. tube/whatnot preamp pedals and effect pedals out there. Even "amp in a stomp box" pedals.

    So all I need is a Power amp that's CLEAN to put that into Cabs.
    I DONT NEED xxx watts even if it's bass to be honest volume will be so low that even 30W are more then enough, as long as they stay clean.

    Cabs will also be swapped around fir further tone shaping depending in application. So no combos. And NO KEYBOARD AMPS exclusively (John Lord wasn't using a Roland KC now was he;)

    I feel this is the way foreword for total flexibility.
    What do you think?

    Problem is I don't see too much choice around. If anything most fall short on the voicing: a lot of interesting small amps are designed for guitar only and won't let pass low enough frequency.

    So far I like:

    EHX 44 Magnum - it lets all frequencies pass from deep lows to highs. Sounds clean and takes pedals well. IT'S CHEEEAAP!! At 150$ or so real bargain.
    Problem: possible hum and build quality issues. No tubes. I'm a tube freak!

    Carvin TS100: just discovered this. Has 4 tubes, looks like its as clean as hell, affordable. I don't need 100watts but at least it's not overkill.
    Theoretically also let's pass a broad frequency spectrum.

    Are there any other recommendations? I don't want to spend more than $500 (used also) ideally but I'm open to interesting products, though for example MesaBoogie stuff is out of question really.

    I'm also open to a combined amp/head solution if you deem it good and clean /transparent enough. As said, I will be getting tone from pedals etc., not really from my amp. as I need to swap from keys to bass etc so no one trick pony will do.

    Thanks for suggestions or shared experiences
  2. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    There are literally a gazillion power amps out there designed for PA use. There is no voicing to worry about, it's just an amp. Peavey IPR and Crest Pro Lite are the two lightweight options that get the best recommendations around here. However, if you're going to be recording, you may just want to run a DI rather than mic an amp.
  3. 30 watts is not going far if you use deep synth (recommend min 100 watts). Cabs start at an Avatar TB153, Acme B2 (needs power) or a fEARful DIY cab.
  4. Crest Prolite2 for $325 shipped

    I bought one of these, and for certain, it does come with the 5-year (non-transferrable) warranty.
    These are two-channel amps, with the option of built-in 4th order Linkwitz-Riley crossover at 100 Hz.
    I'm a bi-amper, so this saves me from need another 1RU for an external crossover.

    This amp is a real performer, very solidly made. It will not disappoint.

    [ edit ]
    These are "open box" or some-such.
    Mine came with a slightly bent rack ear... flannel cloth + big Channel locks and good as new.
    The more expensive is virgin factory packing.
    Mine was open, saved me $50, still comes with the warranty.
  5. Lorenzop


    Oct 23, 2012

    I'm not really planning on running PA, more guitar cabs.

    I just discovered the Matrix GT800Fx stuff. This looks like it might be the answer, as it's stereo!
  6. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    You said you were going to be running various preamps. Finding a power amp that does instrument level is going to be difficult to find and very limiting.
  7. TRichardsbass

    TRichardsbass Commercial User

    Jun 3, 2009
    Between Muscle Shoals and Nashville
    Bassgearu, Music Industry Consulting and Sales
    I have the exact product you need, however, it falls under my endorsements, so please PM me for details.
  8. Lorenzop


    Oct 23, 2012
    Hey bassgod.... You're right, disregard that, was my bad.
    I was just thinking, could regular speaker amps be used to drive cabs? They however accept line signals correct? I have a Alesis RA300 could I use it for now to drive 2 cabs (as its stereo)??
  9. Lorenzop


    Oct 23, 2012
    Any more suggestions?? Or are these things only for guitarists!!
  10. wcriley


    Apr 5, 2010
    Western PA
    No. As others have already stated: Any PA or home theater power amp will meet your needs.
  11. dincz


    Sep 25, 2010
    Czech Republic
  12. RickenBoogie


    Jul 22, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    A good mixer and a pair of headphones will do what you want. If you want to use amps, look into the Mesa M6 Carbine, and use BASS cabs. I play synth every day, using a Mesa M3 into a small bass cab (right), and a Roland KC350 on the left. Stereo is the way to go with keyboards, and especially synthesizers. Guitar rigs will fall way short, and guitar spkrs will eventually shred to pieces.
  13. kcole4001


    Oct 7, 2009
    Nova Scotia
    Over on the Moog Taurus user forum, folks suggest using a powered cab, and recommend the QSC KW152 or KW 153.

    The KW152 is two way (15" and compression driver) while the KW 153 is three way (15", 6.5", and compression driver).

    http://qsc.com/products/Loudspeakers/KW Series/KW153/

    Both use a 1000w QSC amp and are reported to work really well with the massive low end put out by Taurus bass pedals.

    They're not cheap, but a dedicate synth system is pretty much a necessity.
    Bass amps and cabs don't generally offer an uncoloured sound, and guitar gear likely can't handle much of the low output.
  14. Webtroll

    Webtroll Rolling for initiative

    Apr 23, 2006
    Austin, TX
    There was a Crown XTi 2000 in the TB classifieds lately for a crazy low price. Plenty of power and very light weight. Before you say it's too much power let me add that I sometimes use it with a single 10" speaker and it works fine.