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Music Man HD150

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Chef, Mar 27, 2006.


  1. Chef

    Chef Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    May 23, 2004
    Columbia MO
    Staff Reviewer; Bass Gear Magazine
    Anyone use one of these? Not the guitar version with reverb, just the plain old HD150?
    Clean, warm and powerful, and a good bass amp, or grindy, dirty and gritty, and a great guitar amp?

    thanks!
     
  2. ezstep

    ezstep

    Nov 25, 2004
    north Louisiana
    I had one for about 18 years. I used it with 1x15, 2x15, and 2x12 cabs (no, not at the same time!) and 1x15 with 4x10. I played a Ric 4001, a 1982 Precision, and a Carvin LB75 through it.

    Powerful? You bet! Especially with the 2x15 or 1x15+4x10. I never had any problems getting the volume I needed.

    Clean? Yes! The solid state pre- could be overdriven at any volume, but I kept the main maxxed out and the pre- low and never had any distortion.

    There is a "Deep" rocker-type switch (an eq-pre-set) which really kicks. It was the first amp that I owned that, no matter what the volume, if you turned the high, mid, and low controls down to zero, you got zero sound. Nothing was pre-set that couldn't be taken out with a switch.

    Now the downers. 1. It is heavy - about 48 pounds, IIRC.
    2. There is a switch for 8 ohms or 4 ohms, but not down to 2 ohms, although, personally, that wasn't a problem for me.
    That's about it.

    I traded mine to a guy at a music store (with a few $$ thrown in) and got the Peavey Max700, which is even heavier, but more powerful. Otherwise, I would still be playing it.

    Anything that old, I would have a technician look at to see if the caps need replacing. But, there are places on the internet that specialize in bringing old, tube amps up to spec!

    BTW: I could contact him to see if he still has it.
     
  3. Chef

    Chef Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    May 23, 2004
    Columbia MO
    Staff Reviewer; Bass Gear Magazine
    bump
     
  4. I had a HD150 and it was an excellent amp for bass. It could definitely get raunchy sounding but you would really have to push it. I used to play through a blackface bassman and 1x15 cab (and also a 2x15 "fridge" cab) when I was a kid and the HD150 over a good basic cab like the Avatar 115 that I had at the time made a great rig. It was better matched up with the Avatar 210. And on top of a modern cab like my Epifani 112 it was really happening.

    Plenty of power for most club gigs. If you match it up with a cab loaded with the higher efficiency drivers common in the 70's you would be stunned at the volume. You won't get all of that extended low end but you will be heard and sound good while doing it.
     
  5. Chef

    Chef Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    May 23, 2004
    Columbia MO
    Staff Reviewer; Bass Gear Magazine
    Fretless:
    I like the Beefheart line under Zippy there;) I'm a clean freak, and would be using it with Schroeder cabs: known to be real efficient. Again, big fat punch is kewl, distortion pedals aren't, if ya follow!
     
  6. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD
    I had the HD-130. I REALLY wanted to like that amp. It did clean deep lows really well, until the preamp clipped, then it sounded like a nasty fart. It was a good amp for what it did though.
     
  7. glivanos

    glivanos Supporting Member

    Jun 24, 2005
    Philadelphia Area
    I had a HD130 for years. I got alot of use out of it but I did not really like it.

    Because the preamp was solid state and the power amp section was tube, which is really backwards from the way it should be, you did not get that really warm, smooth tube sound.

    It sounded more like a solid state amp. But I will say it was very reliable and built like a tank.
     

  8. +1.. that's matches my rather fuzzy memories of my old HD130... great amp for its time, but kind of a 'back-asswards' design IMO. Sounded very SS to me, but with the disadvantage of Tube weight from the power section.
     
  9. Rock City

    Rock City

    Apr 8, 2001
    Boston,Ma
    I LOVE my HD-150!(Used it Friday night). I run it through a Bergantino NV-610 or a Boogie 115 depending on the size of the gig. I did have a HD-130 for a short time, and it didn't kill me, but the 150 is a monster. I have to disagree with the "back-asswards" comment. The solid state preamp affords a great deal more headroom than a tube front end, and the sound of tubes really happens in the power section. That's why an SVT sounds like an SVT, and an SVT III pro doesn't IMO.
    The Musicman amps are not for someone who wants flat tone with tons of headroom. They are much better suited to rock-with- a-pick-Thunderbird/P-Bass guys like me!
    Corey
     
    Marko Vasiljev likes this.
  10. Chef

    Chef Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    May 23, 2004
    Columbia MO
    Staff Reviewer; Bass Gear Magazine
    Ron, that last set of comments makes it sound like it's really not for me.
    I just looove big clean headroom, and it sounds like you're saying that's not quite the hd150.
    I think I've talked to you about the traynor yba200 at one point...if so, is that amp more the big clean headroom tube amp I'm lusting for? Maybe there is no such thing...Back when I played at Meas400+, it's "upside" was the big headroom...even at low volumes you could feel that power "idling" behind the notes. In the end, the Mesa still wasn't clean enough for me, and the wieght was, well, heavy.
    Maybe the DB750 is what I'm looking for, but it's an anchor wieghted amp as well.

    I might just oughta resign myself to being a TFB lifer-which, the more new stuff I try, the better that seems. I just can't get past wanting to try new stuff...For reference, my ''b'' amp is a wt800B....
     
  11. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD
    That's the kind of guy I am, it just didn't work for me. :meh:
     
  12. Chef

    Chef Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    May 23, 2004
    Columbia MO
    Staff Reviewer; Bass Gear Magazine
    Thanks Ox...just further affirmation that I need to just be happy with my TFB and wt800B.

    Dang, don't life suck;)

    Seriously, I love those two amps.
     
  13. Rock City

    Rock City

    Apr 8, 2001
    Boston,Ma
    Hey Chef.......as great as the YBA-200 is, I don't think it would be your ideal amp either. Think very thick, syrupy, old school Sunn 2000S. Not the kind of headroom you may need.
    Corey
     
  14. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD

    Sounds like the kind of amp I need.

    Damn you, Corey! :mad:


    ;)
     
  15. I would like to think that Zippy likes it too. He almost has a showing scalp flat top! Go Zippy!

    I think that the HD150 is a really solid amp, but i don't know if it is a good choice for the "clean freak" crowd. It will break up eventually, when pushed. It might not sound like a distortion pedal, but it will get grindy. I think of these amps as being great choices for punk, grunge, hard rock, r&b... but not anything super clean. The disclaimer is that I have no idea how it would sound with the Schroeder.
     
  16. savit260

    savit260

    Mar 6, 2006
    Boston
    If the 400+ isn't clean enough for you, then the HD 150 certainly isn't going to do it for you. I had a HD130 and have played a HD 150. Nothing backwards about ss pre/Tube power section. Nothing better for good rock tone that power tube distortion. If you're into that super clean/big headroom sound, no all tube amp I can think of is going to do it for you. I think s/s is the way to go for what you're describing.

    I think Corey, OX and I think alike,

    P + Lot's o' tubes = :D


    P.S. Is that Corey from Somerville??
     
  17. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD
    I always thought the distortion on the HD130 was really ugly and laughable, very solid state sounding & farty. :meh:
     
  18. savit260

    savit260

    Mar 6, 2006
    Boston
    I thought it was o.k. up to a point, and then it kind of crashed into uglyness.. That's why the HD130 left and the Sunn's stayed!
     
  19. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD
    Yup!
     

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