Need advice on cabinet purchase

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by BartmanPDX, Mar 8, 2005.

  1. BartmanPDX

    BartmanPDX Supporting Member

    I currently have a late '80s Hartke 410XL cabinet driven by a GK 400RB head from the same time period. I hadn't played for many years, but I've been playing a lot again lately, and bought a Bassman 25 so I can play upstairs (my main rig is downstairs), and so I could play through headphones (can't wake the toddler!) :D

    My problem is this: In many ways, the Bassman sounds better than my old rig! I guess I hadn't really realized how tinny the Hartke sounds; I'm having a difficult time getting a good tone out of it, and the bottom end seems especially weak. I've ordered a new five-string which I'm worried will sound crappy through it.

    So here's what I'm thinking: given the enthusiasm for (and pricing of) the Avatar cabinets, I think I can convince the wife to let me get one. I'm reluctant to sell the Hartke, because I just don't think I'd get much for it. If I keep the GK 400RB as my amp, as well as the Hartke 410XL, which Avatar cabinet should I add to the mix?

    1: Avatar B212 (this is the leading contender)
    2: Avatar B115 (since I'm keeping the Hartke, this might mix batter with the 410???)
    3. Avatar B112 (lower power demand on the 400RB, but I'm worried it will be overwhelmed by the Hartke)

    Keep in mind that the GK 400RB will have to power both units (unless I can't get the Hartke to sound good, and have to unplug it). Unfortunately, I won't be able to adjust the volume of each cabinet separately in this configuration. :(
    I'm not going to be gigging/moving at all anytime soon, so portability and power/volume are NOT an issue -- I just want my new 5-string to sound as good as possible.

    Comments are most appreciated! :) :) :)
  2. LowEbandit


    Aug 11, 2004
    I would go with the avatar b212. I have not played through Avatars but I hear that they sound good, and are a really good bang for the buck and also sound pretty warm. I haven't heard anyone complain about them, more like they rave about them. The next choice I would make personally is getting the 115 to compliment the 410. It'll warm up your tone a bit but you still might have a problem getting rid of that tinny sound. Read some reviews on the avatars I think you will be very suprised...

    My 0.02c
  3. lowphatbass

    lowphatbass ****

    Feb 25, 2005
    west coast
    You said you would be playing a 5-string? I would be concerned about the early Hartke. I had one in 87 or 88(when they first came out) and the best thing about the aluminum drivers was they were recyclable..From what I remember it took a while for the 10's to become reliable, there was a problem with the transition from the foam/paper to aluminum at the edge of the driver I think..Unless you have the ability to biamp would take it easy on that cab. I think the 2-12 is a better bet, or another 4-10. Unless you get a couple of "mini" cabs the 400rb will be more suited toward 1 med to med/lrg cab.
  4. BartmanPDX

    BartmanPDX Supporting Member

    Thanks for the replies. I'm not exactly sure what year the Hartke is . . . A friend owed me some money for helping finance his Hammond B-3, and in about 1990-1(???), he gave me the rig as repayment.

    Of course, I might just get the 212, and unplug the Hartke if I hate it -- I certainly will be careful not to play it loud, though.
  5. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PA
    i'd just replace the Hartke. i dont see how you wouldnt find a buyer for it. it'd be a nice find for a club/house/rehearsal bass cab for someone else. and little OT, but i HIGHLY doubt the new ones actually hit 30Hz, like it says on the website. :eyebrow:

    at any rate, get a nice Avatar 4x10, and be amazed at the tonal difference. i've sorta been realizing that 12" just dont punch like they should no matter the cab, and 10" speakers will always be a bassist's best friend.
  6. BartmanPDX

    BartmanPDX Supporting Member

    Thanks, but I always hate selling gear; I end up regretting it. I'm still bummed about selling the little GK portable combo I had; best little amp I've ever heard!!! :( It's possible with the right EQ, etc. I could get a good tone out of the Hartke. I am, however, concerned about its ability to sound good down to the low B on a 5-string. I think the 212 is the way to go.
  7. Kael

    Kael Supporting Member

    Dec 26, 2004
    Oklahoma City
    I have a "newish" 410XL cab and I can say there is no way that it hits 30 Hz. It delivers plenty of mid punch, but comes off as a one trick pony in this regard. I can get low end simliar to a 15" cab out of it, but only by EQ'ing the bejeezus out of it. If I want to hear the low B, then I just bring the 15".
  8. burk48237

    burk48237 Supporting Member

    Nov 22, 2004
    Oak Park, MI
    In the Avatars price range I'd deffinently check Low Down Sound at Don does high quality stuff, uses great componants and has solid construction. He is also doing some really innovative stuff and his prices are very competitive.