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New Hartke Gear

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by mbc, Nov 20, 2002.

  1. mbc


    Nov 15, 2002
    St Paul, MN, USA
    I have been playing Bass for about 6 months. About a month ago, I bought a Hartke HA2000 Amp and a Hartke 410XL cab.
    Just last week I discovered this great website & forums, but ya know... nobody seems to talk much (any) about the Hartke gear. I bought this stuff because I saw a couple of bass players using it, talking to them about it, etc.. I know it doesn't rank up there with the classics, but do you guys think this gear is ok, so-so, crappy? Like I said, haven't heard a lot of chatter here about this equipment.
    I am not playing any particular style of bass at this point, too busy learning a lot of the basics - 60's, 70's, & 80's style rock etc. Also trying to learn the "standards" but have a tough time finding any tabs for them (Sinatra, Bobby Darin, etc orchestra bass stuff).

    Ok.. after all the rambling, I will spit it out.. Is the Hartke gear worth a darn, or should I have waited... getting worried here.... :)

  2. Eric Moesle

    Eric Moesle

    Sep 21, 2001
    Columbus OH
    Hartke stuff isn't "boutique" quality, but there's nothing wrong with it if the tone and price point meets your needs.

    I've personally unloaded all of my Hartke stuff over the years, but there's absolutely nothing "wrong" with it for a non-pro or casual gigging musician.
  3. MIke:
    you should do a search for Hartke, as is does get a fair about of discussion.
    I agree w/ Eric, the equipment has its place, its not boutique, and the aluminum sounds prolly wasn't what made the motown sound either. But the equipment is a workhorse. But you gotta either love the tone or not. (althou the new MX series has a very different sound to it-very non hartke sounding)
    I've played hartke from my bass playing begining and I play it to this day. I perfer the tight punchy tone over that of paper cones. For me it works real well in a band situation and when i finally got to play w/ a large Hartke setup i thought i was a heaven. (I played a pair of 4.5XL thru a hartke7000, and its was amazing)

    You should read thru some of the searched threads and see what others think, but ultimately its what you think. the gear is good for what it is
  4. hyperlitem

    hyperlitem Guest

    Jul 25, 2001
    Indianapolis, IN
    i use a hartke head, the 7000. I really really like it, its loud as.....well its just real loud. I really like the stuff, very durable and reliable. I dont think its just for casual musicians. Everyone has to get started sumwhere, and hartke stuff is by no means the bottom of the barrel. I agree with your choice as a very good investment. The XLs can take alot of wattage though, u should try and pick up a used 3500 maybe for it. Good luck and have fun with your amp.
  5. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Hartke is good stuff. Better than:

    1. Crate
    2. Yorkville
    3. Fender (except Bassman 400)
    4. Mesa
    5. Ampeg
  6. TRU


    Apr 12, 2002
    Northern Europe
    Ouch. You've found a good place to hide, Munji? :)
  7. neptoon

    neptoon Supporting Member

    Jul 25, 2000
    Melbourne, FL
    i'll back ya there, munji. i dig hartke gear. when i get a couple pennies to rub together one of the rigs i'm considering is a pair of 4.5xl's. awesome cabs. they really look like poop when you take them apart (you could tell mine was made of particle board...the drivers are held in place by woodscrews at odd angles and the wiring is a little less than desirable), as i have an older 410xl, but they're built like tanks, otherwise,and you can't argue with the sound, albeit they offer a love it/hate it tone. i know a spec sheet isn't a really good way to judge a piece of gear, but you can't beat the freq response in their price range.
  8. 15-20 yrs ago Hartke and Trace Elliot were the boutique brands to buy. That is when I bought a Hartke 4.5 XL and a 1x15 XL. I bi-amped it for while with a F1-X and QSC USA 850 but when I put my Trio together I just didn't need all that stuff so I settled on the 4.5/F-1X and a 250w (8 ohms) power amp. I can't speak for the construction of Hartke today but mine is 1st class. It has been in and out of just about every bar in WV and has never let me down. As for it not being suitable for professional use (give me a break) Over the past 15 yrs I've seen as much Hartke stuff used by major touring acts as anyother brand. I have just started using a SWR Triad not because I think it is all that much better but because I think it matches my Line6 Pod better. Hartke has its' own distinctive sound. If you like it, it will serve you well. :D
  9. Steven Green

    Steven Green

    Jul 25, 2001
    Pacific NW
    yet another winning comment from the Grand BS'er!:p
  10. CaracasBass


    Jun 16, 2001
    Madrid, Spain
    I´ve been using my Hartke rig* for almost 5 years without problems.

    *Hartke HA4000 amp
    Hartke 410TP 4x10 speaker
  11. rustyshakelford


    Jul 9, 2002
    Doesn't / didn't Will Lee use Hartke?

    I recall two Hartke adds in the 80's.

    One was with Jaco.

    Another was with Darryl Jones, Will Lee, Tom Hamilton, and I forget the 4th guy. I recall, too, a story with Darryl Jones. I think he got a prototype cab. he was playing a jazz festival with Miles, and I think his cab caught fire.

    Surely they have since worked out the cab-catching-fire glitch since then.

    C'mon guys! Hartke stuff is great!

    I tried one of those kickback amps a few years ago and it was great.

    Light, sounds nice, you can hear yourself in a gig.

    Seriously, I have a 410 Eden and it is a pain to lug that thing around. I am thinking about getting a kickback for some SWAT-team type gigs. I wouldn't even need a dolly.

    And the transporter cabs. Light, loud, cheap. Sounds good.

    I tried a ported cab, too, and thought it was nice.

  12. It's nice to know that I'm a winner at something.:D
  13. Seeing what little I've seen...John Turner speaks on a wide variety of Topics...He owns a few (3?) Old Hartke 4x12's...Which to me...Would be heaven...I own a 3500....And It's top quality....I love the sound...Nice and tight...Punchy and bright...As always, your taste may differ....
  14. Eric Moesle

    Eric Moesle

    Sep 21, 2001
    Columbus OH
    I liked the sound of my Hartke speakers for years (a 4.5 XL and a 215XL, run biamped). It wasn't until I played through Aguilar cabs at a gig that I realized that I liked something else better. To each his own.

    I've heard of cold solder joints on Hartke heads in the past, but that problem appears to have been rectified. I've also heard people complain about how the Hartke speakers are simply wood-screwed into the cabinets, with no metal clamp-nut. True enough complaint about the construction deficiencis, but those screws never caused me any problems in almost 10 years of heavy gigging. The one thing you HAVE to be careful about with aluminum cone speakers is letting them warm up in the winter before playing them. They get brittle when cold, and will crack if you push them while cold. By cold I mean "its snowing outside, and my speakers where in the truck for three hours."
  15. Pre EB

    Pre EB

    Mar 15, 2002
    Denton, Tx
    I still have my 2000 and old 240watt 410XL. I beat the snot out of the both for years and only had one problem with the head. The cab still sounds good if you put enough power to it, but with the beer, cat, cig burns, beer, whiskey, dog hair, and more beer, it looks pretty ratty!:D I re-painted the grill red, too.
    I used to run it with a Boogie 15 and it was fine for most clubs.
  16. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Hmmph. You Ampeggers must be developing some thicker skin ...
  17. If your spending time putting your two cents in to get a rise out of Ampeg and Mesa owners, you got too much time and whatever else on your hands! These guys buy this gear because it's great not because it's part of some fad or you told them you use it.

    Anyway I bought a 3500 and a transporter 4/10 and I thought it sounded great in the store. Got it to band practice and to me it was harsh and tinty.But this is ONLY my opinion. I took back the cab and brought home an Ampeg B4/10HLF to me it's way deeper and a more true bass tone. And as for the head I'm trading it in for either a SVT3 or an M-pulse 360. I'm having problems with the tube side of the Hartke it breaks up at a high volume. Probably needs a little work thats all,but it's new and it's pissing me off that's why I'm taking it back for something I think will be a little more well built. Just remember all this stuff you read on this sight is only opinions thats all. I'll bet some of the guys don't even have a bass!
  18. cassanova


    Sep 4, 2000
    I think Hartke sounds better than alot of other brands out there in that price range, Including some of the more expensive Ampeg stuff.

    Ive got a Hartke 2000 head and I run it through a 600 watt 8ohm cab, so Im only getting 120watts out of the head, and its always been more than enough volume for me to play any gig with. The tone of the head isnt all that bad either, good deep bottom end, very crisp highs. Only complaints I have about the head is it could use a mid range control on the shelving and the high end hiss that comes with it.

    As for the cabs I think they sound great, I just question there reliability.
  19. Got to agree with you on the TP line. No bottom end and no real top end either. The XL series is much better sounding. jmho
  20. The 410 BXL is one of my all-time favorite cabs... Hope to pick up a used one some day.

    Their electronics, I have read in various places, can be unreliable. This may be simply because there are TONS of their heads and combos in the field, so failures are just more apparent.

    Hmm... Also, I would seriously take a look at the power being supplied to your cab. The HA2000 makes 120 watts at 8 ohms. I highly recommend that you be looking for about 7X more power than that. 800 watts would be ideal for that cab.

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