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Mesa Buster 200 Head

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by ShawnStones, Mar 18, 2009.


  1. ShawnStones

    ShawnStones

    Nov 24, 2008
    Rockford,Il
    First off, YES i did search....

    The only thread i found similar was closed. "Is 200 tube watts enough for a full band?"

    Alot of people answered "Yes".......but my question goes a little further, because YES, I do play with TWO gitard players. One uses a Diamond full stack the other has a Mesa full stack with a Bogner ubershall head.....so I'm up against some serious volume.(by full stack I mean 2 4x12's)

    For a cab, I have a Mesa RR412.

    My previous signal chain was bass>wireless>pedal board>Ampeg SVP-CL>DBX 131>Avalon U5>Peavey CS3000>cab.

    So, essentially a 3000 watt head with Ampeg tone.

    This worked fine volume wise, just not really what I was looking for tone wise, so I've dumped the SVP and I'm looking for something else.

    I really want a 400+. Just because everything I've heard about the tone is what I'm looking for. Fat, Round, Big, Mid-Range, Growl, Snarl, Low-Mid Grunt.

    Well, I recently got an offer on a trade to aquire a Mesa Buster 200 head.



    So, in closing, will this be enough....or even close to what I'm looking for?
     
  2. bongomania

    bongomania Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    You could make it work. I asked a related question not long ago, focusing on cab efficiency to get the most bang per watt. One of the best answers I could come up with in a production cab was a stack like this of EV PA cabs:

    [​IMG]

    Guaranteed to maximize the racket a lower-wattage amp can produce. Other angles to consider include EQ (boost the mids, cut the lows) and compression, both of which can maximize the "loudness" per watt.

    IOW if you do all that, you should be able to make a serious noise with a 200W tube amp. but whether it sounds good to you, or cuts through a massive wall of guitar cab mayhem, well... you have to try it and see.
     
  3. ShawnStones

    ShawnStones

    Nov 24, 2008
    Rockford,Il
    One good thing I have on my side is my basses. Thumbs. My main thumb 4, alot of the sound I'm looking for is just simply the sound of that bass itself. Low-Mid growl.

    I'm just not sure I wanna take the chance and "just see", as I would be loosing a piece of gear I could bargin some other amps with.
     
  4. ShawnStones

    ShawnStones

    Nov 24, 2008
    Rockford,Il
    The DI part I'm not too worried about, having the U5 and all. Heck, maybe i could run out of the buster, into the U5, then FOH?

    And on the tone too, When I really think about it....all I'm really looking for out of an amp or pre is volume control and some tube warm, and maybe a little tube grit/break up.....the sound of my thumbs amplified would be well enough for me. I've got controls on the bass and the DBX 131 to fine tune anything I'm missing.




    I know theres TONS of material on over/under-powering cabs.......

    But just to be sure, puttin only 200 watts into my 1200 cab.....fine? no?
     
  5. ShawnStones

    ShawnStones

    Nov 24, 2008
    Rockford,Il
    Anyone else got their 2 cents to throw in the ring?
     
  6. RCCollins

    RCCollins Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2008
    San Diego, California
    I've got a Buster 2x10 wedge as well as a buster head.

    The 200 watts gets loud as heck. Unless you are playing outdoor arenas or something I think it will provide AMPLE volume.

    The awesome range of clean to creamy tones will be the icing on the cake!
     
  7. I have a Buster 1 x 15. Loud as hell. Sounds like a dream. IMO better than an SVT and stays clean at higher gain. of course it can grind too. Go for it!
     
  8. P.S. I used it against two Marshall half stacks for over a year and never had it on full blast. they usually told me to turn down!
     
  9. ShawnStones

    ShawnStones

    Nov 24, 2008
    Rockford,Il
    But that's the thing, I will be playing outdoor festivals and arenas.


    I just remember one show we did, a backline was supplied and they supplied a SVT-CL with an 810. And I had that thing CRANKED and still couldn't hear it. And that's 300 tube watts.....that's why this makes me weary.


    I may just get this and use it for indoor and smaller shows, and go back to my pre/power set up for when I need the juice.
     
  10. RCCollins

    RCCollins Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2008
    San Diego, California

    sounds to me like you might want to hold out for the SVT

    then again I dont know wha kind of deal you're getting. the Busters have been fetching closer and closer to the cost of a 400+!
     
  11. ShawnStones

    ShawnStones

    Nov 24, 2008
    Rockford,Il
    Nah, the SVT sound just isn't for me.


    I think I'm gonna give it a shot and just use it indoors and in smaller clubs. Or just keep it for recording?
     
  12. RCCollins

    RCCollins Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2008
    San Diego, California
    I didnt mean SVT (brainfart) - I meant 400+

    The Buster is an awesome amp for recording, though. Awesome tone up and down the dial.
     
  13. ShawnStones

    ShawnStones

    Nov 24, 2008
    Rockford,Il
    Haha...gotcha.


    And knowing me, I'll end up with a 400+ somewhere down the road anyways.......why not have both?
     
  14. RCCollins

    RCCollins Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2008
    San Diego, California
    yeah if you have the means, then go for it! I can't say enough about the Buster... it can do slick clean tube tone and a wide range of subtle OD sounds. The simplest of boosts can push it over the top. And the wattage is arguable more suitable to many settings than a 400+.
     
  15. bongomania

    bongomania Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    My neighborhood shop has a Buster combo with a price tag of $1,000! :eek: I feel certain I could talk them down some, but that's a steep starting point to work down from.
     
  16. mikeswals

    mikeswals Supporting Member

    Nov 18, 2002
    Seattle / Tacoma
    I think you should wait and get your 400+ you dream of.

    Two guitarists with two complete full stacks is alot to compete with.
    So not only would I get the 400+, I'd add another cab as well.

    I used to have a D180 and it held up fine at outdoor shows, but I used two cabs with it.
     
  17. ShawnStones

    ShawnStones

    Nov 24, 2008
    Rockford,Il
    The guy is supposed to be sending me some pictures. Hopefully its in good shape and I can get my hands on it. He says it has new JJ's in it.

    Any tube preferrences for this one?
     
  18. RCCollins

    RCCollins Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2008
    San Diego, California
    JJs sound great in it. I don't see any need to mess around with other tubes to tell you the truth, but others may have different preferences.
     
  19. RCCollins

    RCCollins Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2008
    San Diego, California
    Is it a wedge or the 15"? I gotta be honest, it's arguably WORTH close to a grand, though the sheer bulk of the (exceptionally designed) combos makes them a hard sell in today's market.

    I'm seen several wedge combos go for nearly that much (like 8-900 shipped) on ebay lately. Then again shipping a 90+ pound tube amp aint cheap
     
  20. ShawnStones

    ShawnStones

    Nov 24, 2008
    Rockford,Il
    Anyone got the dimensions on the buster head?
     

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