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Importing an Amp to Australia

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by flexo, Jun 9, 2005.

  1. flexo


    May 3, 2005
    Perth, Australia

    I'm strongly considering buying the Ashdown MAG300 head and an avatar cab. The problem is that i live in Perth, Australia and i know importing this would mean several hassles. What exactly would i need to have done to the amp to make it possible to use the amp in Australia, which has 240 volts main power?

    In Australia the various prices are:

    -MAG 300 Head: $AU895
    -MAG 300 2x10 Combo: $AU1199

    If i ordered through avatar the prices for an equivalent 2x10 setup would be:

    -MAG 300 Head and B210 NEO cab: $AU682.50

    That price would be to have it shipped to an address in the US. How much would it roughly cost to ship something like that to Australia. Also would i get slugged with import taxes and GST? Lastly there's the issue of the mods to make it run with Australia's voltage, how much would that mod run?

    Basically i need to know whether it would be worth doing something like importing it, or if im better off buying it in Oz.

    If there are any other brand suggestions that i may be able to get cheaper then please suggest away!

  2. Marlat


    Sep 17, 2002
    London UK
    You would have to pay duty of 5% on the value of the goods and GST of 10% on the value of the goods plus shipping.

    Shipping would be pretty expensive for a cabinet.

    Most amps have variable volatage transformers that can be switched for 240volt power with the flick of a swtich. Sometimes you have to replace a fuse.

    I personally wouldnt bother shipping a cabinet in because of the shipping costs but a small light amp is doable.
  3. Ozbass


    Apr 11, 2005

    I just imported a rig (head and cab) from the states. Paid GST but no other duty ( manufactured in USA is Duty free) The shipping wasn't too bad (about US$240...(BAX GLOBAL --recommended) ) and the total saving was fairly significant on the ludicrous Aus prices.

    Ashdown (UK manufacturer?) If you're buying new from them, the voltage shouldn't be an issue.

    I will say importing my rig wasn't a stress free experience...but now the dust has settled, it was well worth it

    Good luck
  4. popinfresh


    Dec 23, 2004
    Melbourne, Aus
    1. Getting it from USA will result in GST, Duty's etc.

    2. Shipping a cabinet is hella expensive. Shipping a small Schroeder 21012 is $520US. The cheapest you'll usually find is aroud $500Us I think. Plus it will be a couple hundred $US to ship the amp (Like stated above)

    3. The ashdowns transformer will need to be changed (Unless you use external). Transformers from memory are around $500. I was quoted at about $700 or so for a new transformer, installation of it and labour on a Mesa Boogie 400+. External transformers can be around $1000 for a quality one.

    4. No warranty. I don't think Dave will give you a warranty on it, and Ashdown certainly won't. People over here won't be interested in the unit if it fails.

    My advice - Save yourself some headaches, postal drama's, warranty issues and cash and wait untill Avatars are distributed here. You may still get some sort of Ashdown/Avatar deal when they come over here as well.
  5. A few people have imported cabinets, and claim its much cheaper than buying local- Contact talkbass member: remo for details on shipping Avatar cabinets to Australia- he is believed to be the only one that has Avatar cabs here in Australia on these boards anyways. I believe REMO got his whole rig, a 212 and a 210 for $1300AUD, shipped, coustoms cleared and taxed- Not bad- an Aguilar 212 is $2100rrp here.

    About the head- Ashdowns dont have switchable voltage- they can however provide you with intstuctions / schematics etc... but you will have to buy a transformer of them- which I think was 40GBP and shipping was also 40GBP... No warrienty etc... Will be an issue for some but not others. I was told this recently by a UK tech service rep I emailed.

    HOWEVER: If you can get the amp from mainstream European countries think Germany, or the UK / Ireland you can use the Amp here as they run 220/240vAC @50HZ as well. You will need a new kettle cord- which are like 8bux here.

    And finally... If your shipping stuff from overseas- look into it as deep as you can- dont fall into the "you get 10%GST and 5% customs", there are specific limits / values to this and the way they handle taxing and the like... Also if you go a private carrier such as Fedex, UPS or what ever you will get slugged a handling fee.

  6. I am actually going to contact Dave about this sometime soon to see how it is going-
    I believe someone was thinking of taking up the reighns although- I'm not sure how far away it is - You know who you are!- Get your bum into gear. lol j/k :)
  7. Eoghan


    Dec 5, 2004
    Australian would be the way to go, unless you do what I did for my bass and bring it into the country with you. In which case you buy it before you go on holiday from a music store or have it shipped to a store you are going near (For me it was Sam Ash in NY, I bought online at their store and then went and picked it up) that should relieve some duty and additional tax.
  8. popinfresh


    Dec 23, 2004
    Melbourne, Aus
    ^^Are you talking about Dave B?
  9. Thought I'd just let you know my experiences if its any help.

    After thinking about it, I've had 3 amps sent from the states in the last 10 years. I also got an Aguilar GS112 cab sent over last year.

    As was said before, cabs are just too expensive to ship to get real savings. THe problem is USPS has a restriction on length and girth which make nearly every cabinet too big to send. Its anoying because the limit is much larger when sent to most other countries. This means you have to send courier which is big $$$.

    For some reason I got an absolutely fantastic shipping deal from Bass Central last year on the aggie cabinet that they can't even come close too now. They used BAX global

    On heads I much prefer USPS (US postal system) over couriers Fedex and UPS. Have never had a problem with USPS - gets here in 1-2 weeks, way cheaper and doesn't get a customs handling charge which I have always got with the courier companies.

    There are some tremendous savings to be had if you are willing to put up with the risks mentioned earlier. Any specific questions, let me know.
  10. popinfresh


    Dec 23, 2004
    Melbourne, Aus
    ^^One thing. How'd you go about solving the 240 dilema, and how much does it usually set you back each time?
  11. There are quite a few amps that have 240v/110v operation.
    Last amp I got was a GK 1001RBii which has internal settings that change voltage. The older SWR's have dual voltage transformers with a wire setting inside (got a tech to do that $20 job). Newer swrs dont. Eden are like the older SWRS's. EA and acoustic image have a voltage switch on the back.

    Depending on the weight of the amp obviously - get an exact quote at USPS.com. An avergage amp would be about $100US and then you pay tax at the Aussy end. You can go even cheaper if you choose surface shipping.

  12. popinfresh


    Dec 23, 2004
    Melbourne, Aus
    Hmmm, GK's can be changed easily? Cool, didn't know.

    I would like to get a nice light backup to the Trace, so far an EA or FT is looking nice.
  13. Not all GKs can be changed but definately the 1001RBII.

    funny you should say that - I just bought an EA iAmp500 from the TB classifieds - its on its way to Australia as we speak :hyper: :hyper:

  14. popinfresh


    Dec 23, 2004
    Melbourne, Aus
    Really? How much did you get it for if you don't mind my asking? I have no idea what these go for used...
  15. Yep no problem, its in the used forums anyway. $750 US with a bag, 2 weeks old and $95 US shipping.

    Thats the thing, I have been looking for one of these for ages, they don't come up very often. Ive only seen 2 others come up in the last 8 months or so and they where snapped up by TB members I think.
  16. popinfresh


    Dec 23, 2004
    Melbourne, Aus
    ^^Very cool. Enjoy that amp ;)

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