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Mesa Fest: M-200 vs. M-Pulse 600 vs. Big Block 750

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by andrew, Oct 31, 2004.


  1. andrew

    andrew Supporting Member

    May 20, 2000
    Vancouver BC/Pacific Northwest
    Endorsing Artist: Aguilar Amplification, Spector, Regenerate Guitar Works, Tech 21 NYC
    has anyone had a chance to compare theses amps? i'm especially interested in how the power sections compare to each other in terms of volume/headroom.
     
  2. Send Benjamin Strange a pm.

    He could probably answer any Mesa question you could possibly ask.
     
  3. Benjamin Strange

    Benjamin Strange Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    New Orleans, LA
    Owner / Tech: Strange Guitarworks
    I've tried them all (don't own all of them - yet!). What would you like to know, young padewan?
     
  4. lawndart

    lawndart

    Oct 4, 2003
    Northern NJ
    by no means trying to hijack this thread but sisnce the new mesa cabs are going to have Speakon connectors er the Mpulses going to have those connectors in the future or just the BigBlock?
     
  5. Brennan

    Brennan

    Sep 29, 2004
    San Francisco
    Mr. Strange Boogie Guru, I have a question. How about the walkabout? I heard of a high frequency oscilator problem as well as something about the fx loop. Also, do you know if Mesa sells the scout cab alone? Whats your general opinion. I'm looking for versitile rig for upright and EB that i could add an extra cab for loud gigs.I was set on getting an AI focus until I heard the scout in a shop and it sounded warm and loud. Thanks
     
  6. Brennan

    Brennan

    Sep 29, 2004
    San Francisco
    Thanks man, super helpfull.It definetly seems conservatively rated at 300 watts. That sucka seemed loud. One more question. How about running two (4ohm) cabs at once. Would that be a problem?
     
  7. Brennan

    Brennan

    Sep 29, 2004
    San Francisco
    Right on, thanks.
     
  8. tombowlus

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

    Apr 3, 2003
    North central Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    Actually, the only two mods that I made were the addition of a speakon out (which I highly recommend - I was getting some intermittent cutout from connection to the 1/4" jacks, especially when I used big, heavy cables), and the addition of an unbalanced DI output jack (so that I could slave another amp and still have my balanced DI free).

    Also, I am one of the guys that has driven 2 ohm loads with my Walkabout. No problems at all. More commonly, I ran three 8 ohm cabs (2.67 ohm load), and it ran cool the whole time.

    Great little amp!
     
  9. Subculture13

    Subculture13 Jamming Econo

    Apr 9, 2003
    Toronto, Ont. Canada
    What the hell difference does it make if the jack is PCB mounted or wired in? It's a design flaw plain and simple. You save money one way, that is all there is too it. Running wires to the board or hard-wiring it on makes no difference whatsoever to the way it is affected when failing.
     
  10. Benjamin Strange

    Benjamin Strange Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    New Orleans, LA
    Owner / Tech: Strange Guitarworks
    OK, let's see what damage I can do here.

    M2000 - Tone options galore. Some say too many, although I think it's pretty easy to use once you get the hang of it. It's definitely a rock amp, as it does have a bit of an aggressive character to the sound. I find it to be a little cloudy on the high end at times, but mine is close to 8 years old and the tubes could probably stand to be changed - that might help out the tone a bit. It's pretty warm overall, and you can get some pretty wicked distortions with the tube side cranked and mixed in with the mosfet side.

    MPulse - This is a different sound for Mesa, which really seems to be making their bass stuff take off. It's a bit more hi-fi than usual for them, and seems to have a bit more polite midrange than their previous stuff. I personally am not a big fan of them, as I really dig a bit more aggressive sound, and really rely on midrange. It's a pretty focused sounding amp, but is a little blurry on the low end. I bought a Walkabout and I really dig it, but it's a little hard for me getting used to an amp that doesn't have at least 10 tubes in it. It's got so much low end that I sometimes have a hard time controlling it - I'm not very practiced with the parametric EQ. Cool distortion.

    Big Block - I like this guy. It's more open sounding than the MPulse and M2000, and the low end is more focused than the Mpulse. Very easy to use, and the overdrive is killer. I thought the power rating is rather odd, and I would have liked to have seen this been closer to 1000 watts into 4 ohms rather than 750 into 2 ohms - kind of lame on paper, but they did this as part of the integral design to maintain tone. In the end it doesn't matter much because it's pretty loud. It's more of a rock amp than the MPulse, as it's got a certain grind built right in, even when set flat.

    All these amps appear to be about equally loud with equal amounts of headroom. I'm not a big believer in specs - just go for tone.

    I doubt that the MPulse line will see speakon connectors in the near future, but it may happen sooner or later. Eventually all of their amps will have them, except perhaps the 400+.

    The Walkabout oscillation problem was only with a certain range of amps, serial numbers 000011 through 002001, and Serial Numbers, 002084, 002087, 002088, 002089, 002090, 002091. You can check out the recal notice here. I've never heard any problems concerning the FX loop.

    They do sell the cabs by themselves - I think they're about $499. The 12" cab has a larger passive radiator than the combo - the combo has a 8" radiator, the cab has a 10".

    My Scout has been a interesting tonal option compared to all my tube amps. It's a much gentler sounding amp compared to the rest, and it's just as loud as my full stack!

    You can run the Walkabout on a 2 ohm load for limited times - about 3 hours is safe. If it gets too hot the amp will simply shut down, although it almost never gets hot. The official word from Boogie is to not do it, but the unofficial word is that it's fine.

    And I think that's all I have to say about that.
     
  11. thejohnkim

    thejohnkim

    Sep 30, 2003
    NYC
    i apologize for hijacking the thread, but i just been wanting to see if Ben Strange or anyone else familiar with mesa stuff has tried using the rackmount vtwin as a bass preamp, as i'm sort of a sucker for pre/pow setups
     
  12. Benjamin Strange

    Benjamin Strange Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    New Orleans, LA
    Owner / Tech: Strange Guitarworks
    This is true, however, it doesn't seem to happen that often. Sure, it's nice to have knobs and jacks flown (wich Boogie does on most of their amps), but it's also VERY cost inefficient.
     
  13. tombowlus

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

    Apr 3, 2003
    North central Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    Actually, I have. My lead guitar player owns one, and I really do like the overdrive/distortion that you can get out of it, but I had to use all of the EQ to an extreme level just to get it to sound "okay" for bass. It's a great guitar preamp, and it might work as an effect for bass, but it is not really all that useful as a bass preamp, IMHO. I am, however, considering using either the V-twin preamp or stompbox as an overdrive channel option.

    Tom.
     
  14. Benjamin Strange

    Benjamin Strange Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    New Orleans, LA
    Owner / Tech: Strange Guitarworks
    I use the VTwin pedal for an overdrive. Pretty sweet. Too bad it's on loan to my guitarist.
     
  15. lawndart

    lawndart

    Oct 4, 2003
    Northern NJ
    Benjamin Strange,
    have you had the opportunity to play the Big Block with a pair of 1x12s? I have yet to see a Big Block around here.
     
  16. lo-freq

    lo-freq aka UFO

    Jan 19, 2003
    The Republic of Texas
    Interesting regarding the BB; what cabs do you usually use this amp with?
     
  17. Benjamin Strange

    Benjamin Strange Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    New Orleans, LA
    Owner / Tech: Strange Guitarworks
    The Big Block doesn't seem to like small cabs; it's much better suited for big cabs. I've only played it through Powerhouse 1000's and 8x10's :p It's a big sounding amp, and for some reason sounds a little caged with smaller cabs.
     
  18. lawndart

    lawndart

    Oct 4, 2003
    Northern NJ
    even the Aguilar 1x12s? i own a pair but have also tried out a pair with a Agi db750 is it? The sound that stack produced was schweet!
     
  19. karrot-x

    karrot-x Banned

    Feb 21, 2004
    Omicron Persei 8
    You know what's a good combo:

    Mesa M-Pulse 600
    2 x SWR Goliath III
    Musicman Stingray - 4
    Warwick Thumb N/T - 4 & 6
    Warwick Corvette FNA Jazzman - 5

    ............ :bag:

    Sorry ... it's my dream setup right now :)
     
  20. iualum

    iualum

    Apr 9, 2004
    60453
    Sure they're all good, but I'm of the opinion that they're pretenders to the Mesa throne. Go 400+, my friend.