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New amp choice help

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by JamesFoxBass, Apr 30, 2015.

  1. Once my beloved Ashdown CTM300 finally sells, I've gotta re-invest the cash in a new rig and whilst I've pretty much decided on cab(s) I'm nowhere near decided on what head to get, help me narrow my choices down and give me reasons why I should go for these amps!

    The choices are:
    MarkBass LMIII
    MarkBass TTE 500 Randy Jackson Sig
    MarkBass LM800(Tube and non-tube)
    Aguilar ToneHammer 500
    Gallien Krueger MB800 Fusion
    TecAmp Puma 900
    EBS HD360

    Cab wise I'm looking at either TKS or Barefaced.

    Sound wise, I'm after modern, yet vintage. Not very descriptive I know, but if you can imagine a the best of the modern amps making some amp loving with the vintage classics, think B15 and SVT, the resulting spawn would be my ideal sound. The amp needs to be able to cope with a wide range of tones and not have too many knobs and features, I have a pedal board that does all the fancy stuff for me so not much need for it on the amp!
  2. Gallien Krueger MB800 Fusion, full three tube, six section preamp. Over 800 watts @4ohms and over 1000watts burst @4 ohms. Extremely versatile to get from old school thump to modern bright and be articulate in the process.
    Kukulkan61 likes this.
  3. ExaltBass

    ExaltBass Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 28, 2006
    Twin Cities, MN
    I recently downsized from my beloved Eden WT800C to a MarkBass TTE500, 1/2 the weight and less power - but I really don't need all the power that came with it any longer. I've been quite pleased with the MB, sonics & power... but if I were still doing bigger clubs and more outdoor stuff I would have stuck with the Eden. NO regrets, just my experience so far.
  4. Low Class

    Low Class Supporting Member

    Jul 4, 2005
  5. bebass

    bebass Sho Me Music Commercial User

    Sep 3, 2006
    Bolivar, Missouri
    ShoMeMusic.com; Authorized dealer for Bergantino, Dingwall, Darkglass, Genzler, Phil Jones Bass, Quilter, Blackstar, Cort, Traynor, and other
    Out of your list I think I would go with the GK MB800 Fusion or the Aguilar TH500, but any one of them would probably do the job. I would also investigate others. Find one you say WOW when you hit the first few notes - then buy it.
    B-string likes this.
  6. Michael4bass


    Aug 20, 2011
    Florence, MS
    I highly recommend the TH500. I'm old school, so I don't know exactly how well it'll do the modern high-fi sound, but it's excellent at the vintage sound.

    Bassically, Michael
    jthisdell and ExaltBass like this.
  7. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Retired Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Of those, I'd go with the GK MB Fusion 800 (actually I did go with that). However, if you can wait 'til July or so, you may want to try Jim Bergantino's new B|Amp. It's got a simple, intuitive front end with a still robust feature set, including the ability to download firmware from the internet via a USB thumb drive. If you got one of his current cabs (like the outstanding CN212), the amp has presets to optimize the tone for each cab. Then you can tweak it with four bands of semi-parametric EQ. It's much more user friendly than the EQ on the TCE RH450/750, showing the actual frequencies that are being adjusted. All that, and it sounds fantastic.
  8. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Retired Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Agreed. If you like clean and modern, though, the TH500 is not the one.
    Michael4bass and B-string like this.
  9. Kukulkan61

    Kukulkan61 Supporting Member

    Feb 8, 2011
    Northern Arizona
    Greetings B-String, just wondering about the 800 fusion, I have the new mb112 combo and powered extension cab, would I be able to use the 800 with the ext. cab or would it be too much power for it, I'm thinking about getting the 800 to use with a 1000+ watt 410 4ohm. Cab but it would be nice to use it with the 112 for that tube feature, any knowledge would be greatly appreciated..
  10. The direct out (XLR DI) is not strong enough to drive the powered extension (MBP) cabs. That input needs to be a +10db on the MBP's and the DI on the MB Fusion 800 is designed for mixer inputs of a much lower signal level. I don't know how much sound you would actually get from it.

    EDIT: Forgot about the 1/4" on the MBF 800, it's switchable between headphone and "chain out" so YES you can. You just need a cable 1/4" TRS to XLR balanced cable, push that switch to "Chain out" and you are good to go for full function.
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2015
    Kukulkan61 likes this.
  11. Kukulkan61

    Kukulkan61 Supporting Member

    Feb 8, 2011
    Northern Arizona
    Thank you Sir, yes that's what I meant on using the chain out not the DI out, do you know if the amp or cab is equipped with a safety feature as to not push the 800 watts into the 200 watt cab?
  12. The output power only comes from the speakon connectors. If you only use the DI or Chain out the output section that provides all the wattage is just sitting idle and unused, which IS safe to do without a speaker load. If you tried to use the speakon speaker outputs to the powered cab you would blow things up pretty quick, but that adapter cable is not made by anyone as it shouldn't be.
    Kukulkan61 likes this.
  13. Kukulkan61

    Kukulkan61 Supporting Member

    Feb 8, 2011
    Northern Arizona
    So in essence it would remain a 200 watt rig with all the awesomeness of the fusion 800,.. Gotcha Thanks B String..:thumbsup:
    B-string likes this.
  14. jthisdell

    jthisdell Supporting Member

    Jun 12, 2014
    Roanoke, VA
    I like my Tonehammer, lots of power and very easy to dial in a good tone. It is a little "wooly" is the term most use though but I like it.
  15. eastexsteve


    Sep 23, 2015
    I'm with you on the new Kustom amps. I recently bought a Kustom KB200HR 200W Rackmount Bass Amp, and that thing is the best sounding solid state amp I've ever heard. It doesn't matter what cabinet I use. I also have a Music Man HH Slo Special that sucked unless I played it through one of my tube amps. But, that Kustom head makes that bass come to life!

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