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Mesa M-Pulse600 vs. SWR

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by The Golden Boy, Jan 2, 2004.

  1. Hi, I'm new here!

    I've been a part of other guitar forums for a while, but as I'm primarily a Bass player, I figured it was time to find a Bass forum. It seems like I got lucky finding one with members that are knowlegable and experienced. I've done a bit of looking around and didn't really find an answer for this.

    For several years (5-6) I was using a couple of the Seymour Duncan 600w bass heads (one as an unnecessary spare) pushing a SWR Goliath and SWR Triad. As the Duncans were old, I thought it was time to get a "new" head and opted for a SWR Bass 750. To make an excessively long story short, the Bass 750 blew up, and never worked right. I assumed it was just a lemon, and when I got a great deal on a brand new SWR SM-900 I jumped on it. To make a not quite as long story short, in the past almost 2 years the amp has failed 3 times (on stage) and been in the shop 6 times (where it currently is). The store where I bought the amp may be attempting to make this right, and by that I hope that means taking the SM-900 and getting me a monster bass head with no loss to myself. A few years ago I checked out the Mesa M-Pulse 600 and thought it was a great amp, would anyone have any idea how the two would compare?

  2. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD
    The M-Pulse is a good amp, although it may be a bit more lo-fi than the SWR.
  3. Hi Davey :)
  4. Hey, getting a new M-pulse for used SM-900. Go for it!

  5. Forgive my brass. I am not shy, and can state have a financial bias too, but regardless ....

    You may want to look into the TFB420 by Thunderfunk. Check my profile for the link (I help market them).

    It is lower powered than the SM-900 but similar to the SM-500 (early SWR's and the TFB420 both have the same heritage). I don't know the Mesa M-Pulse.

    The TFB420 is hand made in America, signed by the builder, has a 2 year warranty, is very competitively priced, and has a good thick tube-y tone many folks like.

    I'm not sure where you live, but we're setting up dealers now, and if you have someone you like working with, I'll get hold of them.

    P.S.: It's prob' better this type of promo be sent through private message, but The Golden Boy has no e-mail link.
  6. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL
    in alot of the SWR amps, i could never get the hi-end to quite sound as smooth as i'd like. just waaaay too harsh and papery.

    but the Mesa sound has always been a fav. kinda hifi, yet tubey and round. just the way i like it.

    i'm thiiiiiiiiiiis close to getting a Walkabout head, but i'm waitin' out for the Epifani Ultra 500.
  7. chadds


    Mar 18, 2000
    The Triad and the Senior are both 4 ohm cabinets. SWR amps don't like it and are inefficient at 2 ohms. I thought it was peculiar that two different amps acted up for you then I realized that you were giving them to low of a load. It seems your Duncans didn't mind but there is no guarantee that newer amps by any manufacturer will perform well under this situation. Many threads have talked about this. The problem can be exacerbated by boosting eq and high volume.
  8. chadds


    Mar 18, 2000
    Goliath II or III or Senior?
  9. Im a sock

    Im a sock

    Dec 23, 2002
    Central MA
    Honestly I'm surprised that you've had such bad luck with SWR. I've been playing an SM-500 live and in the studio for a year and a half, and I've never had any problems with it.

    But, if you're going to get rid of it, you might want more power than the m-pulse 600 if you're going to power 2 cabinets (especially the goliath, which is a power-hog). You could probably put together a power-pre system for less than a good head, and have way more power and better sound. The QSC RMX series is a value, and although I've never tried them, people on the boards seem to like them.
  10. The Golden Boy (Davey?),

    I would also recommend going power-pre. I think you’ve seen this before but I’m using SWR cabs with a 4-Ohm Goliath III and an 8-Ohm Son of Bertha. With using the QSC power in stereo mode, the different impedance is fine. The Goliath runs at 4 and the SOB at 8 - separately.



  11. [​IMG]
  12. Fair - but I did apologize in advance ... and if someone asked you whether a red or a white candle was a better choice for reading at night, should you suggest a light bulb?
  13. If I sold or marketed light bulbs, it would be in poor taste to recommend my brand of light bulb in this type of setting. It would be spam. And, direct email would be even worse spam.

    I haven’t tried or heard your products, but the spam makes me not want to. If they are great amps, you don’t need to spam. The word will spread fast across these forums.

    Just my $0.02, and best of luck to you and your product.
  14. Point Accepted
  15. tombowlus

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

    Apr 3, 2003
    North central Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    I would highly recommend the M-Pulse 600 over the SWR. I own a Walkabout myself, and I do love it, although I have had to pull the trick of plugging a short cord into the effects loop on a couple of occassions. When I was shopping for some cabs up at Low Down Sound, I had an opportunity to play through several SWR heads. And while I did not really mind the tone, it didn't really move me. Now, the Walkabout, on the ohter hand, blew me away from the get go. I would think that the M-Pulse would be more of a great thing. Personally, I wouldn't call it "a bit more lo-fi than the SWR" at all. In fact, I'd put the shoe on the other foot, myself.

    As for reliability, I did see an SWR meltdown take place before my eyes at a recent BB King show. The poor bass player had one heck of a time with his rig - SM-900 into Goliath and Son of Bertha (I think). First, there were a couple of times that he dropped out for a couple of notes, and he spun around and looked at his amp, but the sound came back, and he kept playing. Then, it happened again, and he played hammer-ons with his left hand, while twiddling knobs with his right hand. Finally, the 3rd or 4th time it happened, his stage hand ran out and started twiddling with knobs. Then, he bolts off stage, and comes back with a GK head. Plugs it in, twiddles some more, and after a long period of that boor fellow bass player bravely plugging through his lines with no amplification, the GK was finally up and running, and he played out the rest of the night. Interestingly, he must not have had a separate DI, because there was no sound from the bass at all while they did this.

    So, even the pros have trouble with their gear, it seems!

  16. tombowlus

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

    Apr 3, 2003
    North central Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    If you hear some crackling, it may be a bad connection on the internal side of the effects loop. Some people asked Mesa about this, and they suggested plugging a short cord into the effects loop. For most people, this takes care of the problem. However, I will also say that I find the 1/4" speaker outputs to be somewhat loose with my large barrel speaker cables, so I just may replace one or both of the 1/4" outs with Speakons.

  17. Hey Winston!

    It's been a while. What's news by you? As far as my choice of a rig, I really want to stick to a head (pre+post together) concept. I just don't like the idea of getting a preamp and sticking it together with a power amp, but if it ever came to a situation of running a real big ass rig, then it's something that would make more sense to me.

    The Ox- it was a hell of a lot easier dialing in a usable tone with the Mesa than it was with the SWR. It took MONTHS to refine it to exactly what I liked. In other words, you have more of a chance of sounding like ass by walking up to an SM-900 than you do MPulse. (That's sounding LIKE ass, not sounding like AN ass)

    Thunderfunk- I'd really have to try it, and I realize I could be getting one cheaper than they end up, I'm not the gambling type.

    Chadds- The Triad and Goliath are the older style, so Goliath II at 8 ohms. So I was running a 2.67 ohm load, not below the 2 ohm minimum. Besides, the Bass 750 blew using the 8 ohm Goliath II alone. Currently with the fuse problems I've been having, it's happened while using a Big Bertha alone. Here's my analogy for the thread: If a car advertises that it goes 65 miles an hour, but the car keeps blowing up at 60, it shouldn't be advertised to go at 65. As far as amp settings, everything falls in the 9:00-2:00 range (pre, bass, treble, master).

    I'm a sock- I've had hella bad luck, and have ZERO confidence in anything SWR could do to keep me as a customer. The kicker is, with all the problems I've had in the past year or so, I've only used this head for shows, 2x-4x a month max, I practice with one of the Seymours.

    Thanks All for replying! Sorry it's taken so long to get back to you!
  18. No problem. Being an "unknown" I more than understand.

    Also - I probably spammed this thread with my original post, so please accept this apology. I do not know the M-Pulse 600 - it is probably a Great Amp, but do know some of the other amps in our price range, and sometimes I feel like a parrot, saying "ya gonna hear it, 'cause hearing is what really sells 'em".

    Please enjoy whatever you decide on, and I hope to see you on MTV, or CMT, or Both!
  19. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

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