Mesa Boogie 400+ (Q's)

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by MagicianMan, Sep 18, 2006.

  1. MagicianMan


    Aug 2, 2006
    Hey guys, I know this has been discussed before but my questions are kind of time-dependent and the Search is disabled.
    So my questions go out to owners of the head:

    How Heavy is it? The Mesa website doesn't give that exact spec.

    How is the sound a medium/low volumes? Is it such a powerful tube head that it needs to be cranked to sound good?

    How long do the tubes last and how much would would it cost to retube? (what, like 18 tubes?)

    And, finally, any things I should look for in a used one, any possible trouble spots?

    All answers are welcome because its a used head at my local music store that could disappear pretty fast at such a good price.
  2. timv


    Jun 7, 2000
    Chandler, AZ
    When you say good price, what price? If it is around $500 or something and works when you try it out, definately get it. Retube every few years but is dependant on how often you use it and how hard you push it, complete retube around $200 or so, 16 tubes. Only the power need to be done that often though. It is easier to move aorund than an ampeg SVT or most other 300 watt tube amps but if you put it in a rack case it adds weight. I think it sounds good quiet but probably sounds better loud, like most tube amps. If it is a good price, definately get it, worst case you could put it on ebay and make some money.
  3. MagicianMan


    Aug 2, 2006
    Thanks TimV, anybody know the exact weight? I think it was about a year or two old at 730 bucks. Anybody else with some hints?
  4. timv


    Jun 7, 2000
    Chandler, AZ
    I shipped mine to austrailia in an skb case packed very well and I think it weighed maybe 65 - 70 lbs packed. Not positive though. That is a pretty good price for fairly new.
  5. rayzak


    Jan 13, 2001
    Louisville, KY
    $730 is a very fair price.
    I think the weight is somewhere around 55lbs, but don't quote me on that.
    I think it sounds great at any volume.
    However, get used to tweakin' for a while as there are so many eq options with this head.
    It's built like a tank and the tubes should last you a good couple of years or more depending on how often you use it.
    I personally love that you can run it at 8, 4, or 2ohms with no worries.
    Go for it, it'll power any cab you can throw at it.
    Here's proof:bag:
  6. cheezewiz


    Mar 27, 2002
    About 45 lbs unracked.

    Sounds awesome at ALL volumes.

    Tubes can last MANY MANY years. A retube on a Mesa 400+ costs about $200 to $250 if you know where to shop. DO NOT buy Mesa's junk tubes at overinflated prices.


    Good luck, and go buy it NOW!
  7. I just bought a brandnew one this weekend for 1599.00 so damn 720.00 I'd do it just on principle alone!

    but I think this head is the best sounding head I've ever owned--> it is actually making me enjoy playing by myself now it makes my basses sound perfect!

    I have been playing all solidstate stuff and finally said I'm doing it I'm buying a 400+ and for the record in a SKB case it weighs exactly 60.0 lbs on the scale...

    I hear its around 100lbs in the boogie shock mount case which cost 500.00 so I'll just carry it myself and save myself a few bucks (for now)

    awesome head!
  8. sunbeast

    sunbeast Supporting Member

    Jul 19, 2006
    Denver, CO
    I just bought one on Ebay, and it had some problems- arrived with no ground prong on the power cord (pulled out at some point!), crappy power tubes (although apparently the same tubes Mesa puts in there stock, or did at some point- Sovtek 5881WXTs), and 2 bad preamp tubes. I figure if you play it and it sounds good, you probably have none of these problems (which are all problems which don't really relate to this amp specifically, but any amp that is mistreated). I ended up keeping mine and getting it fixed locally by "Lord Valve" (actually still in the shop), as the cost of returning it (coupled with the original cost of shipping it to me) would have been about the same as the cost of just keeping it and fixing it.
    They definitely sound better at higher volumes! I would disagree that they will push any cabinet(s), with the tubes originally in mine it only put out about 200 clean watts (tested by Lord Valve)- it will only put out around 300 or so with real 6L6s- This will not seem like all that much through an inefficient speaker setup, tube powered or not- I personally will play it through an Ampeg 8*10 (an older one rated at around 600 watts) and it is bone crushing through that cab (in past experience), but would not be through many newer higher powered cabs (from my experience before buying the amp!).
    Karl Zickrick
  9. Depends on the rack its in. For a tube head, its fairly light and I can carry it around myself. I'd say a good 60 lb maybe, with a normal 5 space rack.
    While it definately does sound better when cranked, I find that there are also very good and usable tones at lower volumes as well. I believe that someone on the board modded his so that he could switch on individual power tube pairs.
    The cost to retube is a bit expensive ($300 maybe, depending on the tubes) but I have been using mine for over a year with no problems whatsoever, and many have been touring with the head for years with no issues.
  10. Power tubes CAN last for many yrs-depending on how hard U push 'em & how many hours use.
    I had my old '70's amps power tubes in it for about 8 yrs of prax & gigging approx. 2x/week, but I never ran it past about 2/3rds on the master vol.
    p.s. I recently retubed it with modern tubes & one blew after 2 gigs-bah to modern tubes!!
  11. Sounds like a QC issue, but modern tubes tend to last if you get a good set in.
  12. MagicianMan


    Aug 2, 2006
    Thanks for the responses guys, and Rayzak, man that's a sweet rig! I am really tempted but I'm not sure if that weight and power is too much for me at the moment. ( I know, I know, TOO much power? :smug: )
  13. Tualatin


    Feb 7, 2005
    I've had some problems, some came with it, some were my fault.
    I still love it though.
    I had to have an output transformer resistor replaced, retubed twice this past year as a reult of that, and just recently, a capacitor that feeds the pre-amp section came unsolderd from the circut board.
    I recomend 2 2x15's to go with it, It will be very happy. Get a shock or padded case, for extra protection, or at least peace of mind, and a few cans of duster, the chassis seems to like dust.

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