I've got GAS for a new amp, but the reason isn't what you'd expect...

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Big Hoss, Dec 15, 2014.

  1. Big Hoss

    Big Hoss Up note, down note, blue note, brown note...

    Long story short, in 1999, I was rear ended while I was stopped on the freeway for a wreck immediately in front of me, by a car doing 70 mph... To say the least I have had back issues ever since then. This past weekend has been a particularly notable flare up, and it's got me giving some serious thought to my current amp setup...

    I own, and contrary to what others have said, I actually LIKE the tone of my Crate BX-100 amp. The power is pretty decent, although truth be told I would like something with more oomph. Where the crate gives me problems is moving it...

    At a stated 65 lbs (My scale says 70!) the Crate is downright beastly to wrangle in and out of my truck, ESPECIALLY with my back problems...

    I am giving some serious consideration to selling off my crate, as well as my MXB-10 practice amp that pretty much doesn't get used, in favor of buying a Fender Rumble 500.

    At 36.5 lbs the weight difference is HUGE, and goes from pushing a bad back, to the situation where I can deal with it pretty well...

    Mind you, just hauling from room to room is no biggie, I mean hand truck does great with that, and I can probably set up a ramp on my truck to just wheel the amp up in place cutting out a LOT of hte problem... But I still would like to upgrade.

    So I need help deciding. Which would be better, realizing that I likely will never do any gigs louder than coffee shops and praise and worship bands, and in most of those venues I would run from my amp to the board and house PA system... So the real emphasis on the amp is for a stage monitor use...

    I know I could go a LOT less money and go with the Rumble 100, but I was thinking about future-proofing myself with the 500. My concern is going to be the difference in tone between the 1x15 I am used to using, and the 2x10 of the fender combo...

    I try to play a variety of styles / music, but I gravitate toward deep lows / mids that a 1x15 seem to work so well for. I just wonder if a 2x10 will work well... And be worth the $$.

    Do the Rumble 100 or 200 have a 1x15 config?
  2. Low Class

    Low Class Supporting Member

    Jul 4, 2005
    If you stand the extra weight get the 200 over the 100. More power and 15" vs 12".
  3. FFTT


    Mar 15, 2009
    You might just want to save up for a good tube D/I and a pair of IEM's
    providing the PA systems you play through can handle it.

    If a re-injury could result in possible paralysis, I sure wouldn't push my luck.
  4. Rune Bivrin

    Rune Bivrin Supporting Member

    Oct 2, 2006
    Huddinge, Sweden
    I would seriously look at grabbing a light-weight head such as Gallien-Krueger MB200 and build a simple ported box out of well braced 1/2" plywood with an Eminence KappaLite 3015 (or DeltaLite II 2515). Look at the Simplex plans at billfitzmaurice.net. You could get below 10 lbs with that.
  5. FFTT


    Mar 15, 2009
    I know two guitar players who are now partially paralyzed in their fretting hand from a slipped disc.
    Both had surgery and there's not much anyone can do.
  6. Not going to buy that weight. I bought an open back guitar cab, built out of okoume and a neo speaker. Still weighed 15 pounds.
    B-string likes this.
  7. I share your pain - and there's nothing like being super careful loading and unloading and setting up for a gig and then just making one wrong move and pulling something out of whack before the gig. (I did one gig sitting on my amp I was in so much pain.)

    The good news is with class d amps, you can get a high powered head that weighs less than your bag of cables. And lightweight cabs are a plenty too. A combo might be simpler and there's light ones as you discovered too.

    If you can handle it without worry, I'd go with a higher power setup. You never know when you might need it - as long as you're not carrying too much extra weight with it. I'd pick the 500.

    Also I don't find 15's to be deeper than 10's - in general they can be the same. Boils down to the specs of the speaker. A bunch of 15's are full range, not subs, and they actually sound less deep than a pair of 10's to me. (I used to play through a pair of older 2x15 cabs - thats four 15" speakers - but a newer single 4x10 cab blew them away in how low it could go!)

    Eden used to make a Nemesis line with cabs made out of... plastic? I don't recall now (and I own some!) - but they were super light.

    Good luck with your choices!
  8. Also, the 1x15 rumble 200 is listed as only 2 pounds lighter than the 500 with 2x10.

    Using the internal speakers, you're comparing 140 watts of the 200 to 350 watts of the 500. Big difference in headroom there.
    Plucky The Bassist likes this.
  9. Low Class

    Low Class Supporting Member

    Jul 4, 2005
    I would somewhat agree with this 10 fold over a Fender Rumble. A GK MB200 and a good lightweight cab will give you a much better rig than the Rumble. The MB200 I have sounds much better than the Rumble 500 head I owned. The DI is much better also.
    mdjuszyn and strictlybass_ic like this.
  10. Rune Bivrin

    Rune Bivrin Supporting Member

    Oct 2, 2006
    Huddinge, Sweden
    Well, 10 lbs might have been a bit optimistic. 2 lbs for the amp, 6 lbs for a DeltaLite II 2515. Maybe 20 lbs of fir plywood, but you could easily go to 3/8" ply if you wanted to. Just mind the bracing!
  11. Big difference between 10 and 26 pounds. :woot:
  12. SickAura

    SickAura Let There Be Rock Supporting Member

    Dec 8, 2013
    +1 microhead + Neo cab

    Like you I also prefer 15's - I have tried many 210's but they just don't do it for me

    For heads:
    GK MB200 or Traynor SB200h = both are less than 2 lbs
    GK MB500 or Traynor SB500h = both are less than 4 lbs
    I'd go for the 500 to give you extra room with an 8ohm cab - just throw 'em in your gig bag - you won't even notice the weight

    For matching cabs:
    GK Neo 115 or Traynor Neo 115 = both are less 40lbs
    But I really like the Ampeg PF115He at 45 lbs (I own 2)

    Amp buying time is always fun so enjoy!
    mdjuszyn likes this.
  13. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    First, if weight matters so much, why get a cabinet with a head built-in? Separates are easier to schlepp, and allow you to change your rig with your needs. Second, I have a 210 that blows away many 115's for lows. Driver size does not determine frequency response/performance/tone.

    Try some of the ultra light GK neo cabs, some of the Ampeg PF stuff, and choose between all the cool cheap 500+ watt micros that are out there. If you need to find it cheap, don't forget about used gear.
    FerK likes this.
  14. From what I have seen the G-K NEO115s are a little low end shy, not so with the NEO212 or 112s
  15. will33


    May 22, 2006
    Most any half-decent 12 with a hundred watts pushing it cover a coffeeshop or church stage. No need for the larger box of a 15 or 210 IMO.

    200 watt Rumble with a 12. 200 watt GK with separate 112 or their MB combo with 112.
  16. iiipopes

    iiipopes Supporting Member

    May 4, 2009
    I gig with a Carvin MB12 for the exact reasons stated: a couple of rear-enders over the years, and I just don't want to carry the weight anymore. The reason I like the MB12 is if I need to carry the house, I can. If I need low end extension, I can plug in a 1X15. It has all the tone shaping, including both shelving and parametric, pre/post line out, active/passive, dim tweeter, tuner out, 250 watts, etc. The entire combo only weighs 30 pounds. It is also voiced neutrally, so I can use it with both double bass and electric bass.
  17. Big Hoss

    Big Hoss Up note, down note, blue note, brown note...

    Where can I demo a GK rig in Houston metro?
  18. Grab an MB200 and a Schroeder 15+L. You and your back (and your ears!) will thank me later.
    Muttleybass likes this.
  19. jumblemind

    jumblemind I also answer to Bryan Supporting Member

    Aug 27, 2011
    I feel your pain. I had a similar accident and have had to revamp my rig to avoid the flare ups. I've never played a crate 1x15 combo, so I can't tell you for sure, but I wouldn't hesitate at all getting the Rumble 500 combo. At 36lbs it weighs the same or less than most lightweight speaker cabs. With its "vintage" switch engaged it's pretty fat down low, and these Rumbles pack a wallop. I would check out the sound first to make sure you like it...most GCs should carry at least the lower wattage Rumbles to test. These Fenders are somewhat flexible with their EQ presets but definitely skew vintage tube in their tone style. GC should also have one or two GK combos to check out for tone comparison. They are more modern sounding and are great products.

    I will disagree with the above post that said the GK MB200 is way better than the Rumble 500. They both sound great in their own ways. At 2lbs the MB200 is a little beast that kicks louder than a lot of higher-rated heads, so it would be the lightest option out there. I ran mine with a 26lb Ampeg 210AV, and it sounded awesome, but that gets away from your 15 direction.
    pudgychef and Big Hoss like this.
  20. Yango

    Yango Inactive

    Apr 14, 2008
    You might want to consider a 1x12 neo. They sound fantastic, and the weight saving is significant. Aguilar has one at just 25lbs. Or if your rig doesn't have to be feather weight—I'm using a Mesa Boogie walkabout Scout 12" combo, and man does this thing sound good! It weighs in a roughly 49lbs with the 300 watt amp installed. There's a lot of choices out there—I'm sure you'll find something that rocks your world while leaving your back intact.

    As for the head, GK is awesome. I highly recommend the MB Fusion 500. All tube preamp, 500 watts, 2 foot-swtichable channels, and an easy to use fantastic sounding EQ. And all that in a 4.5lb. package.

    Last edited: Dec 15, 2014