High End Tube Amp/Head Recommendations Under $2k

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Baird6869, Jun 23, 2008.

  1. Baird6869

    Baird6869 Supporting Member

    I used to play a '70's Ampeg SVT but sold it many years ago and jumped on the SS bandwagon. I am currently using an Ampeg B2RE or a Markbass F1.

    I recently played through an SVT classic and realized how nice a big tube head can sound.

    Now I am thinking about getting a tube head.

    Ones I am looking at are:

    Ampeg SVT - CL and all other all tube Ampeg heads (possibly even a Pro series)
    Ashdown Klystron 1000 Head Classic Series
    I am open to any other recommendations but live in Canada where most boutique stuff is hard to find/try.

    I play everything from funk to metal and my cabs are all Ampeg (1x15 and 2x10).

  2. The Klystron series aren't full tube heads, they just have a tube preamp stage, there is no power tube stage, just fyi, might help make the choice easier
  3. If you're looking for all-tube goodness at a reasonable price you can find these amps for sale on this site or Ebay under $1500. I love mine. The sound is huge, fat and warm. I got mine from Long & McQuade in Vancouver. Another player here found one in Florida and had it shipped up.
  4. Peavey and Traynor both make ~200 watt tube heads, not boutique but not $2K either.

    Markbass makes a tube head but it's expensive.

    Fender/Sunn makes a 300 watt head.

    Then there's the good old Traynor Bassmasters from the 60's and 70's. Get one that's been serviced and you have good tone for about $500.

    Fender tube guitar heads like the Showman sound good with bass cabs.
  5. shoot-r


    May 26, 2007
    Eden has a new all tube head, 300T, it's supposed to be around $1000. I've not heard one but the reviews have been very favorable.
  6. Chef

    Chef In Memoriam

    May 23, 2004
    Columbia MO
    Staff Reviewer; Bass Gear Magazine
    There's a Sadowsky SA200 in classifieds here if you have $2800.
    Is that high end enough?
  7. kotzman


    Feb 12, 2007
    Santa Fe, NM
    I played though a Sadowsky head several times and thought that it was about the best thing I had ever heard. I use an Aguilar DB750 though and I really think that it is the light and the way.
  8. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 16, 2008
    Washington, Utah
    John K Custom Basses
    if you like SVT's then i would recommend the new SVT-VR. I like mine just as much, or more than my vintage SVT.
  9. pedro


    Apr 5, 2000
    Madison, WI.
    I love the sound of my Ampeg V4b. I'm also considering Peavey's new 225 watt tube head. From what I hear its quite loud and fairly lightweight. And at $900 seems pretty affordable all things considered.
  10. faivy


    Nov 23, 2004
    I'm in Canada also
    There is nothing like the sound coming from Tubes
    My holy grail of sound is my B-18, I've got an old SVT I'm having a hard time justifying(I never play places big enough to warrant it) and the aforementioned SA200 which sounds the way basses are supposed to sound.
    I have an Aguilar DB 359 as well and I think those are great alternatives, I'm probably going to need to sell mine because I have too much stuff!
  11. hbarcat

    hbarcat Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2006
    Rochelle, Illinois
    Throw Mesa Boogie into the hopper of possibilities.

  12. tombowlus

    tombowlus If it sounds good, it is good Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2003
    North central Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    In alphabetical order, you should consider:

    Aguilar DB359
    Ampeg SVT-VR
    Ampeg SVT (vintage model)
    Eden VT-300A/B
    Laney Nexus
    Markbass Classic 300
    Mesa Boogie Bass 400/400+
    Mesa Boogie D-180
    Orange AD200
    Peavey Classic 400
    Peavey VB-2
    Reeves 200
    Sadowsky SA200
    Trace Elliot Twin/Quatra/Hexa
    Trace Elliot V4/6/8
    Traynor YBA-200/B

    And anyone who knows me knows which one I pick as my top dawg. :cool:

  13. pedro


    Apr 5, 2000
    Madison, WI.
    I guess I don't know you as well as I should but I'd love to see you re-sort the list in terms of preferences. ;)
  14. tombowlus

    tombowlus If it sounds good, it is good Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2003
    North central Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    Well, here's about as far as I get:

    #1 - Sadowsky SA200
    #1a - Trace Elliot V8

  15. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG
    As an old Ampeg nut, I would suggest just getting an old Ampeg.
  16. pedro


    Apr 5, 2000
    Madison, WI.
    Thanks Tom.
  17. tombowlus

    tombowlus If it sounds good, it is good Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2003
    North central Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    That really is another great suggestion. :cool:
  18. Tom Howland

    Tom Howland

    Feb 11, 2003
    The SA200, is one of the nicest heads I've played.
    Through a NV6x10 it was heaven.