Need help choosing my new rig...

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Meyekul, May 18, 2005.

  1. Hey all, I'm trying to put together a new rig to replace my struggling combo amp that I've been using for about 7 years. It's barely cutting it for the small gigs I've been doing, and I don't have a DI box so the PA isn't helping a bit. I can't even imagine taking that thing to a larger gig; it might make a good monitor... I've pretty much narrowed my choices down to the following:

    Hartke 3500 amp
    Avatar B210 Neo
    Avatar B115 Neo

    This should come to around $900 with shipping. My current amp uses a 15" speaker, and I really like to rumble, so I figured the B115 would be a good choice. However, I've also heard that you get a hell of a rumble out of the Avatar B212, so I'd like some opinions and maybe some sound clips if that would be possible. I know the sound clips wont help me "feel" the difference, but it should give me some idea. The 212 is rated 1000w RMS while the 115 is only 300w RMS, so I'd be able to use the 212 with a more powerful head later on. I would probably wait for a Neo version of the 212 though, as that extra 25lbs is kind of scary... :bag:

    I know this rig will sound nice; I've done some homework and searching of this site. However, I also found a sweet Gallien-Krueger rig at Musicians Friend for around $650 (excluding shipping).

    G-K Backline 600 head
    G-K Backline 210BLX
    G-K Backline 115BLX

    This will be my first "real" rig so to speak, but I want it to last a while and work in a variety of situations. So, what do the experts have to say?
  2. may i recomend a gk800 RB with avatar 2x12 or the 210 115.

  3. ndjx


    Oct 26, 2001
    I wouldn't recommend those Backline cabs. They will not have the rumble you want like the Avatars will.

    A Kustom Groove Bass head runs pretty close to the price of the Hartke. They have one at my local Music Go Round new for $499.

    A few more options:
    Carvin B500 - $450 -
    It's bigger brother the B1500 received an awesome review from Bass Player Magazine.

    Eden Nemesis NA320 - $450 - Ebay Link
  4. I probably should have mentioned that I'm trying to stay at or under the $900 mark, as I am just a poor farm boy. But, thanks for the suggestions. Keep em coming :)

    Also, I don't really want anything used. If I'm going to part with that much of my hard-earned cash, I want it all shiny and new. :bassist:
  5. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

    A BIG +1 on the Groove Bass head. That plus a Avatar 2x12 would keep you under $900 shipped. NOBODY else makes a head with more watts, better tone, better looking (cool stainless front with leds and nice metal knobs and switches), more features for that price. Believe me, I shopped EVERYTHING in that same price range before taking the Groove Bass plunge and nothing came close when you compare everything...
  6. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

  7. lilrowland


    Mar 17, 2005
    Gk is amazing but their backline series is not the greatist if you want osmething cheap i would go with the behringer 300 ultra bass head. I have this head and it has the nicest things and it sounds amazng. It comes with a shape channel(which i am in love with) and a ultrabass channel with lowers it an octave i believe and its eq is sweet. comes with active and passive inputs also. Althoguh ppl despise behrinnger for copying off other companys this head is well worth the price.

    Now for cabnets i use a carvine 4x10 with a carvin 2x10 and sounds amazing. I would go carvin all the way but i was short on money so i wanted a cheap good head and the behringer stuck out the most.
  8. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

    And don't get the GK Backline stuff. Their other stuff is great but the Backline is well......not so great. The Avatar cabs will blow those away. One Avatar 4 ohm 2x12 would be killer, plus the Groove Bass head will go down to 2 ohms, so you can always add another cab in the future!
  9. The Kustom Groove Bass head does look really nice, does anyone know an online retailer with a good price on it? My local music shop doesnt have anything that nice, pretty much all they carry are Peavey amps.

    I'm afraid of Behringer. I saw the 300w head and thought it was a killer deal, but after reading some experiences with it, I think I'd be better off with something else. I want this rig to last at least a few years...
  10. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

    No offense lilrowland, but the Kustom head KILLS the Behringer. Of course it's not a fair comparo as the Kustom costs twice as much. I played the Behringer and while it sounded ok, it lacked the headroom that I needed (especially when playing my 5 string and hitting a low B) and the knobs, etc just felt very cheap, like they wouldn't last for more than a year or two. Again, no offense, but if he has $900 to spend, he can get someting much nicer. I TOTALLY agree with you on the GK Backline stuff!
  11. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

    You can try my dealer:

    Also, I went to Kustom's site, did a Kustom dealer search for your state (KY) and saw 29 dealers!

    Go here--> Dealer List

    One of them should be able to hook you up for about $500 give or take a few bucks. Combine that with the Avatar 4 ohm 2x12 and man ooooh man!!!!
  12. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

    Also I had a Hartke HA3500 a while back (as well as a HA7000 and HA1400). It was a "good" amp, but no where close to the Kustom...
  13. Yeah I'm really interested in this Kustom head. I was looking forward to looking cool and having 2 cabs, but that may have to wait a while... 800 watts for under $900 is too good to pass up :hyper:

    I checked that dealer locator and a few of those are fairly close to where I live, so I may go try to check one out soon. Actually, it appears that Kustom is based in Cincinnatti, which is only about 3 hours away from here. Thanks for the all tips. :bassist:
  14. illidian


    Jul 2, 2004
    Just don't buy those Backline cabs from Musician's Friend.

    There's some fine print that includes an additional $70 on top of shipping costs, and are "freight only" or something. The newer Backline cabs ship for free and are cheaper (after shipping costs and an extra $70).

    The Backline 600 head has been fine in my experience so far. I've pushed it to clipping a couple times just to see how loud it was, and wasn't too loud, but enough to cut through in a band I think (I was only running at 8 ohms, and wasn't using any EQ). After playing for half an hour, the amp was still cool and the fan hadn't started yet. A little workhorse with a great price tag, but I would recommend the 1001RB-II for $300 more if you can afford it. If not, stick with the Backline and spend the other money elsewhere. The Backline 600 also comes with rack ears ($30 value), the only GK amp that does I believe.

    The Backline 2x10 was fairly articulate considering the price tag, and wasn't very loud. I wouldn't trust it on its own.
  15. Another +1 on the Kustom and Avatar 212.The Hartke-Avatar 115/210 setup you listed would great too but the Kustoms power with the 212 cabinet would give you the option of adding on later if you had too.Personally,having gigged with a pair of Avatar 112s with lots of power you really shouldn't need to upgrade,the 212-Kustom should be plenty.