my amp setup... i hate it. upgrade? or start from scratch?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by humanisfood, May 18, 2012.

  1. humanisfood


    May 18, 2012
    Raleigh, NC
    AMP: Peavey 440GH 1st output: [email protected]/[email protected] 2nd output: [email protected]/[email protected]
    15" Speaker: Sonic, Inc 115TL/EV Proline [email protected]
    4x12" Speakers: Peavey 412F BlackWidow [email protected]

    sounds OK at lowish volume but gets distorted and sounds terrible very loud. play a guitar thru it and it sounds awesome. is any of this stuff worthwhile? i bought it a million years ago. i am not a gear head so i dont know what i am doing... but i wanna play some shows soon and this isnt cutting it. any advice would be great. I am willing to spend $1,000 but would like to spend as little as possible (haha). i play metal/punk style so LOUD IS GOOD. but i want the quality to be decent.

  2. RickenBoogie


    Jul 22, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    If it were me, I'd sell the whole thing and start over. A good bass head in the 300-500 watt range, paired with a good quality bass cab, 2x12, 2x15, etc. Don't skimp on the speakers, and buy used. Peruse the classifieds below, and find a deal. plenty enough budget for a top-class bass rig.
  3. cableguy


    Jun 4, 2009
    North Bend, WA
    Sounds like the head is running low on power. How does it sound with just one of the cabs. I don't know about any of it but I think that is an old guitar head. I think I would start with a different head. CL is a great way to go if you have it in your area. Or guitar center has used bass stuff as well. Maybe start with a new head like a PF350 or PF500. GK and Carvin also have micro heads that are betweem $3-400. I'll bet that will sound pretty good through your 1x15 cab. You can get used bass cabs for $150 to 300. Old Peavey 2x15 or 4x10 cabs are all over for deals. Great cabs just too heavy for a lot of older guys. Good luck....
  4. stambroker


    Aug 12, 2011
    For the sake of space, I'd sell it all and start over. Just don't expect to make much by flipping it. I love old Peavey gear but it's not for everyone.

    I urge you, for $1000 you could get an amazing rig used. Join the legions of forumites who waste hours looking through the classified ads here.

    I think you'd be right at home with a GK 700RBII with RBH/Neo cabinets rig, or:

    Hartke LH head w/ HyDrive cabinets
    SWR 350x/550x/750x head with any kind of Goliath cabinet
    Carvin B1500 head w/ sexy BHX cabinets


    You can get fantastic full stacks used within $1000. For punk/metal, I think you'd like to grab a sturdy, versatile full stack.
  5. nubs


    Mar 1, 2005
    for 1000 bones you can get yourself a sweet set up...go used.
  6. true story. got a brand new head (hartke HA5500c- 500w @4 / 330w @ 8ohms ) 500$. then I got a used cab (ampeg 410he- 500w @8ohms). 300$. perfect volume and incredible tone for $800 total. my guitarist plays a 60w fender super pro tube so he's not quiet lol
  7. Get yourself a new PF500 and a used cab like the one free bassd got.
  8. JACink


    Mar 9, 2011
    Call me crazy here, but would it not be worth trying a newer/better head, and then upgrading cabs if it still doesn't cut it??
  9. will33


    May 22, 2006
    austin,tx start with...plenty of people will say "that sucks, buy what I have". Some of that information is worthless because they're not you. Others can be quite helpful when they play similair types of music, similair sizes of venue, similair situations regarding PA support, or lack of it.

    You may indeed end up replacing the whole thing, but, if you're going through it a piece at a time, I'd start by ditching the 15, and not replacing it with another 15, unless you come across a 15 you like the sound of BY ITSELF.

    I think those Sonic cabinets are some budget stuff aren't they? Likely cheaply built. The cabinet may be vibrating, robbing output from whatever 15 you stick in there. If you like the way the 15 sounds on it's own at lower volumes, you might consider getting a second better cabinets...tuned to work well with that driver. Otherwise, stick with the 412 for now and look to a different amp. Some of your distortion problems are no doubt a single, "not too great at low bass" 15 trying to keep up with that monster of a cab you're stacking it with.

    Basically, stop stacking everything together. Play each cab separately and see which one you like the tone of...not volume...tone. If the answer is neither, ditch the whole thing and start over.

    Same with the amp. If you like how it operates with either speaker...OK for now...if you don't, ditch it and get something else.

    Those Peavey 412's are some volume creators, but, if you don't like the tone, making it louder isn't going to make it any better.
  10. swaps


    May 12, 2012
    Austin, MN
    Sell your current set-up to an axe man, and buy yourself a proper bass rig.

    Sounds like it's well suited for the mids and highs of our 6 stringed friends.

    But to push the big speakers with a heavy low frequency, you're going to need some more punch. A solid head and quality (over quantity) drivers.

    My system isn't uber powerful, but it's a tube head, 100W out of a tube is different than 100W from a modern solid state head. Plus my 1x15 2x10 can throw enough sound to satisfy my needs. Then again, I'm not playing big outdoor gigs, or any gigs at all. I just have fun jamming around with my friends.
  11. funkinbottom

    funkinbottom Supporting Member

    Apr 23, 2006
    Northern CA.
  12. Primakurtz

    Primakurtz Registered Nihilist

    Nov 23, 2011
    Denver, Colorado
    I try to remember that I will only sound as good as my weakest link (OK, other than ME, which is usually the weakest link). In your case, that Peavey cab is probably your strongest link. I would follow will33's advice - test everything individually.

    For metal & punk, your options are many. A good GK head (1001RB) might be a great start, for under 500 used.

    Have fun experimenting!
  13. Substandard

    Substandard Supporting Member

    Oct 15, 2009
    there are used ampeg 8x10's for 500$ every lately (at least in seattle, ymmv). So get one of those and get a used ampeg b2r and a sansamp RBI. punk metal for days and super balls. down the road get yourself an svt classic. you'll never look back.
  14. will33


    May 22, 2006
    Your rig looks to me like you're just shooting in the dark, trying to get good sound based on common misconceptions and not liking the result, which is understandable...or....are limited by budget, which is wholeheartedly understandable, picking up what you can and not liking the result. There are ways to do the latter and end up with something really good, or end up with a big pile of stuff you don't like. Some basic understanding of gain structure, eq, and mixing/acoustics might be in play as well.

    You also have zero information in your profile. If you were local, help can be had. You also have zero information about what your goals/needs are.

    More info = better answers.
  15. will33


    May 22, 2006
    If all else fails...go to your local GC, if you have one, with your own bass, and plug into some typical, cookie-cutter, run-of-the-mill, Ampeg, GK, Peavey, Markbass rigs and see what any of those have you like, what they have you don't like, what your rig or combinations thereof have or don't have in comparison to that, then come back here with more info, better defined goals.
  16. Biggbass


    Dec 14, 2011
    Planet Earth
    +1 agree
    Markbass is a good option. love mine
  17. That 412F might be a guitar cabinet, just FYI
  18. humanisfood


    May 18, 2012
    Raleigh, NC
    hows this look?

    my goals are to play loud deep bass... often with an overdrive pedal. usually house show or very small venue. 50-100 people. very loud. no PA. i have a 5string and i want the Bstring to be terrifying. haha.
  19. will33


    May 22, 2006
    Pissin' in the wind for what you want to do. Your current rig with the 412 will make more noise. If it's a guitar 412...more distorted noise.
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