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musicman tube head

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by tinkindy, Dec 17, 2012.

  1. tinkindy


    Dec 9, 2012
    Does anyone else use a musicman tube bass head?
  2. Ric Vice

    Ric Vice Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2005
    Olivette, Missouri
    Tin Kindy,
    Well, I don't own one, but we recently played them at a local music store. I thought it sounded absolutely fantastic. Evidently they are tricky to repair because they have a solid state preamp
    Music Man amps are hybrids, the power amp uses tubes. So they are a "reverse hybrid" of the current amps like the Genz Benz Streamliner's.

  3. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I once saw Johnny Winter blow my head off at a 2000 seat club with two MusicMan combos the size of Fender Twins. Saw Devo a couple times and their guitarists were using them as well. Never played their amps for either guitar or bass, but all of their amps were hybrids that way and they always sounded killer to me.
  4. jnewmark

    jnewmark Just wanna play the groove. Supporting Member

    Aug 31, 2006
    Stax 1966
    Play guitar.
    I own a Music Man HD150 head. It's 150 watts, weighs around 45 lbs. Power tubes ( 4 6L6's ), and an SS preamp. Very sweet, warm round tone, that's loud enough for a smallish, Blues band setting, with no PA support. You can get alot more info on the old Music Man stuff here : www.musicmanamps.com
  5. GaryLC

    GaryLC Supporting Member

    Apr 6, 2006
    Scotia, NY
    I also sport an HD150 head, wonderful amp!! Very warm, full sound. It's not the best for an "overdriven" sound because of the SS preamp, but I have other amps for that....
  6. garmenteros

    garmenteros Bass Enthusiast Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2008
    Dominican Republic
    The earlier versions did had a tube pre.
  7. coreyfyfe

    coreyfyfe Supporting Member

    Nov 19, 2007
    boston, ma
    I had one, the earlier version with the 12AX7 PI and 6CA7/EL34 tubes. It was monstrously loud but very clean. A lot of tube amp aficionados consider them the worst of both worlds - heavy tube output stage, clean sterile pre-amp. I don't know if I'd go that far, but they certainly aren't the warmest of tube amps.
  8. Dee-man

    Dee-man Supporting Member

    Apr 6, 2004
    SF Bay Area
    Count me in! I have a HD150. Power tube punch and texture. Sound great. Have seen some good deals on these of late ($400 or so).
  9. JTE


    Mar 12, 2008
    Central Illinois, USA
    Not really. The preamp was all solid state, but the earliest version of the 65 and 130 series had a single 12AX7 as a driver tube- but it was wall after the tone-shaping and didn't really impart any "tube-ness" to the pre as it wasn't in any of the gain stages.

    I had an HD-130 from late '77 (got it new for my birthday) until about 2000. This one had the 12AX7 driver, and the power amp was a quartet of 6CA7/EL34. I gigged it exclusively until about 1985. I really liked it as a beefier Bassman sort of sound- and I was a Fender dealer at the time... the MM just sounded better and was arguably a better built amp too.

    It sounded best with my Music Man 212RH cabinet and my '79 StingRay, but it worked great with an old Fender (small) 212 Bassman cabinet and a box I had made from EV's Thiele/Small plans with an EV 15"- the only 15" speaker rig I ever played through and liked.

    Morrighan likes this.
  10. Quite correct, people saw the 12AX7 and assumed it was a preamp tube....
  11. pedro


    Apr 5, 2000
    Madison, WI.
    I bought one a few years back along with a matching 2x12 cabinet but I never really warmed up to it. In hindsight it had quite a lot of competition at the time as it was competing against my B15, Orange AD200 and a SVT Classic. The Music Man and SVT were sold. The Orange is up for sale. I'm sticking to the B15 and gigging with my TCE 450 Classic.
  12. tinkindy


    Dec 9, 2012
    I didnt know that, a feller learns somthing everday. See its already paying off in joining this site. Like most of you I really like mine.
  13. N.F.A.


    Jun 25, 2009
    In a blue funk
    Saw the same tour. Couldn't believe how killer that Music Man sounded. Didn't realize they had a bass amp.
  14. ahc


    Jul 31, 2009
    No. Virginia
    The same for me. I gigged my HD130 and 212RH from 78 to the early 90's with my Stingray and 64 Jazz. I still have it. I liked it a lot. Hmmm... I feel a resurrection coming on!
  15. pedro


    Apr 5, 2000
    Madison, WI.
    Brother JTE is a smart fellow.
  16. jnewmark

    jnewmark Just wanna play the groove. Supporting Member

    Aug 31, 2006
    Stax 1966
    Play guitar.
    I think the only difference between the HD 150 bass head, and the guitar version, was, the guitar model had a reverb.
  17. rumblethump

    rumblethump Supporting Member

    Mar 25, 2000
    Pioneer CA. 95666
    According to an x MM employee: Leo had nothing to do with the amp design. He kept to the instrument side of Music Man and the amp design was the VP's baby. The HD 130 is a class B amp. It's design was used by the military in WW 2. I've been rocking mine with 2 2x12 cabs and I have no problem keeping up with loud guitars and drummers.
  18. jnewmark

    jnewmark Just wanna play the groove. Supporting Member

    Aug 31, 2006
    Stax 1966
    Play guitar.
    From www.musicmanamps.com

    In 1971, Leo Fender, Forrest White and Tom Walker formed a new musical instrument company they called "Tri-Sonics, Inc.". Leo and Tom started to layout the scheme for the amplifiers while Forrest worked on a new design for their guitars and bases that would not be confused with the Fender instruments.

    By 1973, the company name had been changed to "Musitek, Inc." (short for "Music Technology"). By January, 1974 the company underwent their final name change to "Music Man". All during this time, Leo Fender was being cautious not to take an active roll in the company because his 10-year "non-compete" clause with CBS (due to the sale of Fender Musical Instrument Company to CBS in 1965) hadn't yet legally expired. In 1975 Leo came out from behind the curtain and announced he had been elected president of Music Man, Inc.

    In 1974, production of the amplifiers had started. These were the earliest versions of the "Sixty Five" series with the 12AX7 phase splitter and a pair of Sylvania 6CA7 output tubes. Production of these amps as well as their 130-watt bretheren continued into 1979 with few changes (except for the change to a solid-state phase splitter design). In August of 1979, Leo's wife of 45 years, Esther, passed away after a long illness. Esther was no doubt the "woman behind the man" that created the Fender music legend.

    New models were introduced in late 1979 into 1980, mainly upgrades to the power output, the addition of the RD (Reverb/Distortion) and RP (Reverb/Phasor) models and a new corporate identity which consisted mainly of reversing the color scheme of the logo plates!

    Throughout the early 80's, new models (including the smallest amps such as the RD/RP50 and the uprated RD/RP100 series) and cosmetics continued to be introduced. It was during this time period that the rare white tolex and white "pinwhal" (a sort of vinyl cordouroy) coverings were introduced. By 1982 the writing was on the wall, and Leo Fender formed his new guitar company... G&L guitars.

    Due to internal mismanagement and ownership squabbles, the company went downhill financially. After considering several offers, Music Man was sold to Ernie Ball on March 7, 1984. Music Man's remaining physical assets were sold on June 1, 1984. A sad end to an amazing decade in musical instrument amplifiers!
  19. tinkindy


    Dec 9, 2012
    I have two 6L6 tubes?
  20. 4Mal

    4Mal Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Columbia River Gorge
    I'm rockin' an RD100 into a custom 2x15 and it it seriously cool! I got the hulk off Craigslist a couple of years back and had it rebuilt. A very loud 100 watts! Get's uber-dubby with the deep switch engaged. Nice tubey, wooly bottom and airy highs. Like it a bunch.