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Mesa Strategy and Prodigy discontinued. Also PH cabs.

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by mikeswals, Jul 3, 2018.

  1. mikeswals

    mikeswals Supporting Member

    Nov 18, 2002
    Seattle / Tacoma
    Wow! so the latest rumors are that Mesa decided to discontinue the Strategy and Prodigy tube amps, as well as the Powerhouse cabs. I saw it listed at one dealer, and a friend says he called Mesa yesterday and verified it true.
    I love my Strategy 8:88, and so glad made them. But sad to see the line already get shut down. :(
  2. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa, Product Support-Genz Benz
    Just going to jump in here to say that both the Strategy and Prodigy are really hot rodded amps and it's becoming more and more difficult to get consistent quality production KT-88 tubes that can handle the high voltages and currents that are necessary under the wide variety of real world conditions that these amps see in the wild (and getting more and more difficult every day it seems) . They are an expensive tube (especially a set of 8), and when reliability suffers the costs of replacements can get pretty high awfully quickly. Since our warranty is both long and liberal (as many of you are aware of, and some of you have taken advantage of), it has just become impractical to continue with such a costly, almost custom build type amp. There are some still available throughout the dealer network, as well as showing up on the TB classifieds. The warranty is transferable, so if you want one just keep your eyes open.

    As far as the Powerhouse cabinets, the days of players seeking out 100+ pound cabinets is coming to a close. Absolutely nothing wrong with the speaker, just that tastes have changed away from this to cabinets like the Subway and similar lighter weight more compact cabinets. There are plenty of new and used PH cabinets out there so there's certainly no shortage plus we continue to stock all the repair parts and warranty service should it be necessary.

    Don't worry though, I am always working on new designs and listening closely to what Talkbass players are looking for, as you all seem to be ahead of the curve more than anywhere else. Now's your chance to speak up! ;)
  3. Old Blastard

    Old Blastard

    Aug 18, 2013
    This is why I like this place. Thanks for watching out for us, Mr. Horse.
  4. joebar


    Jan 10, 2010
    What a drag-
    Mesa bass gear is the best IMO.
    I love my walkabout and carbine.
  5. slagbass

    slagbass Supporting Member

    Apr 5, 2005
    Having played through the Subway cabs, I can see the rationale for discontinuing the PH line.
    While I haven't had a chance to play through the Strategy, my Prodigy has seen dozens of gigs and the combination of tone, features and portability is unmatched IMO. I hope the replacement is a tweak as opposed to an overhaul. Since I have a gig this weekend, I won't tempt the gods and mention that the tubes have given me no trouble to date. :rolleyes:
  6. jnewmark

    jnewmark Just wanna play the groove. Supporting Member

    Aug 31, 2006
    Stax 1966
    Third St. Cigar Records staff musician.
    Time marches on, eh, Agedhorse ?
  7. pgnbstrd

    pgnbstrd Supporting Member

    Aug 14, 2001
    Metro Detroit Michigan
    I'm even more glad I picked up two PH 212s today. I can't get over how good these cabs sound.
    gsgbass, P.G., BadExample and 6 others like this.
  8. jnewmark

    jnewmark Just wanna play the groove. Supporting Member

    Aug 31, 2006
    Stax 1966
    Third St. Cigar Records staff musician.
    " Now's your chance to speak up!". Just wondering, in your research, do you find that the Contour function, or whatever name you want to call it, on amps is still a viable feature on modern amps? Taking a small poll from local bass players, I've discovered that not a one uses this feature. Myself, I would much rather see an onboard compressor, but I'm probably in the minority there.
  9. charlie monroe

    charlie monroe Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 14, 2011
    Buffalo, NY
    Pruning a tree helps new branches to grow.
  10. Slpbass81


    Dec 16, 2010
    Orlando, FL
    Endorsing: GHS Strings
    Honestly I have been running into this issue with my Ampeg SVT-CL and SVT-VR. I can't get any tubes to last longer than 3 months. My winged-c's lasted 6 years but they are no longer in production. JJ's, Tung-Sol, etc are not made like tubes used to be. I'm currently in the process of selling the SVT-VR, moving the SVT-CL to just the studio and picking up a subway amp. You can't replace the tone of a tube amp but for how much it cost it's just not worth it.

    Kudos to Mesa holding up the warranty when I'm assuming 99% of the time a bad tube was the cause for any damage to the amp requiring repair. I would have purchased a Strategy or Prodigy but bought the Ampeg amps before they were created.
    BadExample likes this.
  11. Holdsg

    Holdsg Talkbass > Work Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 10, 2009
    Alta Loma, CA
    next thing we know Big Poppa Ball will be re-vamping the Stingray....ooops...he just did that too.

    time does march on...gear improves...and we consumers benefit.
  12. Man glad I got the Mesa Prodigy when I did. Hopefully finding tubes won't be too hard in the future.

    I was considering getting a PH212 or PH412. May need to speed that up if they are going to become scarce.
  13. swarfrat


    Sep 23, 2014
    What's next, a 120w conservatively rated 6l6 quartet biamped with an 400w class -d underneath, and a cabinet to match? Sounds cool but wouldnt fly with the target audience I'm sure. Unless its the only reasonable option going forward.
    Lance Bunyon likes this.
  14. RoadRanger

    RoadRanger Supporting Member

    Feb 18, 2004
    NE CT
    Ah, the "bedroom tone knob" - important mass market feature. No way are they going to eliminate that one :chicken:.
  15. BogeyBass


    Sep 14, 2010
    Some people don't want hot rodded amps. Just ones that don't eat tubes.

    Bread n Butter might be light amps and cabs. But large cabs and tube amps are still in demand.

    Not always price range either. It literally can come down to basic aesthetics of the cabs and artist endorsments. Same business model that has sold amps since the 60s

    Mesa did really well with custom amps for guitar and always had fun unique custom options.

    But majority of large cab large amp buyers go elsewhere. Not even being negative that market goes to many boutique company's cause the aesthetics and artists using them set trends that mesa isn't hitting.

    Likewise bone simply amps not full of blinky winky lights and millions of switches we really don't need or wanna service.

    If mesa took on the affordable of early fender. The simplicity and serviceability of early Tranyor. And the coolness and aesthetics of modern boutique big cabs.

    It would work. Straight up many players like the cabs. No problem with the speakers and sound. Used or new many many players find the cabs ugly as hell lol. And just ain't gonna buy.

    Majority of players seek and stand behind the powerful and reliable MOSFET heads. And that trade sticks to used units. They just sit on boutique cabs or reloaded vintage cabs. Most don't carry the mesa name.

    Likewise probably up to reps to even understand and even know. Genres labels and bands that literally love walls of speakers. I have feeling many here and elsewhere don't know they exist. But trust me. Big cabs and big amps are needed. And the money goes to other companies
    AlexanderB likes this.
  16. sigterm

    sigterm ;) ;) ;), love y'all Supporting Member

    Feb 5, 2003
    Atlanta G of A
    Being middle aged and set in my ways, I'd like to see at least a 410 or 610 remain. I'd also like a subway pre+ with the hpf.
    Kirk Bryant, Lovep, Al Kraft and 6 others like this.
  17. mikeswals

    mikeswals Supporting Member

    Nov 18, 2002
    Seattle / Tacoma
    Ive had great luck with JJ's. I have several sets. All strong and flawless for a year and half and going.
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2018
  18. Killens84

    Killens84 Supporting Member

    Sep 3, 2008
    If you read through the Mesa Subway thread, you’ll find that many people (myself included) find the voicing knob very useful on the D-800(+). It’s much more refined than the traditional contour knob that I’ve seen on lots of amps. It really helps you fine-tune your personal flavor.
    Mpike, Pbassmanca, Bioflava and 3 others like this.
  19. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa, Product Support-Genz Benz
    The Subway's voicing control, which is a fairly sophisticated take on such a control, seems pretty well accepted and useable.

    We feel your pain, really we do.
  20. JES

    JES Supporting Member

    The Prodigy sort of haunted my dreams for awhile. A glowing blue lightweight tube amp. Sorry to see it go. But I love my lightweight Orange head.

    @agedhorse — here is my pitch:

    It would be cool to do a hybrid tube pre/single power tube and class D set up—power tube sound, high power, light weight, and nobody is doing it right now. Sort of like the old SWR Interstellar Overdrive and a power amp but with Mesa sound and controls. You could run it as an 800 class D with fully tube front end, or a 5w tube amp. Or both.
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2018

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