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New Small Bass Heads

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by nervous, May 8, 2010.

  1. nervous

    nervous Supporting Member

    Jan 5, 2010
    Beautiful Central, NY
    I know that this has probably been covered on more than one occasion but I am having difficulty finding a concise thread on the topic. I find myself on the verge of a new project that will require me to have an actual amp/speaker combo. For the past 15 years in my electric duo I have been simply running a Tech 21 bass DI direct and sending my needs back through the monitor mix. My last go-round with amps and cabs was a SWR SM400 and Goliath 4x10 cab which I just loved. But I am older and a bit more broken down now and am totally digging teh smaller, lighter heads and cabs. I am excited by the prospect but find myself overwhelmed by the variety of small product available.

    So, that said, I'd love your opinions and recommendations on a compact bass amp head. I have been looking into the Eden WT550, TC Classic 450/RH450 and Markbass F1 if that helps you know where my head is at. They all look very good but I am unsure of the real world (if any) differences between them. Cab choices I have been mulling are (respective to whatever head I choose) are the Eden 210XLT/XST or just looking into the TC RS201's. The TC stuff really looks like it would suit me well but I would like to hear some opinions on some other gear that perhaps I have not yet even considered.

    I'll be primarily using a Modulus Q5W w/ EMG's and I like a 'modern' sound. Music will be mostly classic and modern rock covers. Do newer, stacked 2x10 cabs actually match or surpass the quality of a single 4x10 cab of the same type? Is there a loss of the lowest end with two smaller cabs vs. one larger or has that been overcome?

  2. waleross


    Nov 27, 2009
    South Florida
    I have the big heads : Ampeg SvT CL, svT 4 pro and others including a Fender TB1200 which I think is quite versatile. I get a great gig rig with the Fender and a 215 Pro maybe not what your looking for but it delivers for me and it holds down the bottom which is what I'm looking for . Everybody has different tastes and needs, which is great . . . . :cool:

    AMJBASS Supporting Member

    Jan 8, 2002
    Ontario, Canada
    The Genz Benz Shuttle 9.0 is definitely worth a look at. My vote is for the Markbass LMIII though. I haven't yet had a problem getting "my sound" in any situation I have used my Markbass head.
  4. Personally, for that rock tone, the TC is hard to beat. The RS210s are very loud for their size and the tweeters and sweet and in no way harsh.

    The RH450 has a lot of great features.

    But, its best to test what you can before you buy. The Markbass amps are also worth a look, and they have more of a modern, warm and clean sound.

    I fully recommend the RH450/Markbass F1/F500/Markbass LM3.

    There are others out there, so enjoy the ride!
  5. tifftunes

    tifftunes Guest

    Started my "fly-weight" trip with the Eden WT400, then WT550... Versatile and lightweight, but was missing something... I have used and loved a tube bass amp for many decades, and therefore a bit fussy...

    Plugged into a Mark Bass Little Mark II at an open mic last fall, and immediately fell in love with the tone! But not sure about a Chinese made Italian amp, shied away from buying it... It also lacked the tube "feel" I was looking for.

    After considerable reading, I bought the TC Electronic RH450 head, and am certain my tone is "in there," and have come close, but still tweaking... The "feel" is so good, I've sold all my tube heads!! I think it's a keeper!

    I recorded a band last week, and was mightily impressed with the modern sounds from a Genz Benz Shuttle 6! So much so, I'm VERY tempted to get one for myself! However, I don't know if they get a tube amp "feel," or the vintage tones I usually use. And from what I've read here, it is probably not the amp for me... Love the weight (or lack thereof), and the price is pretty good as well. And it's made in Arizona!! I like that a lot!

    Tone hunting is always a complicated journey. And each of us will hear a little differently. Enjoy your tone journey!
  6. RickenBoogie


    Jul 22, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    Don't forget the Mesa Walkabout. At 13lbs, not the lightest, and at 300 watts, not the most powerful. BUT, for the love of good bass tone, it's pure butter.
  7. Gallien Krueger has a few small bass heads, the MB 500 and the MB Fusion. the fusion has a 3-tube preamp taken from the Fusion 550
  8. newbold


    Sep 21, 2008


    the head comes out of the combo, and if you want 210's then you *could* just get the head, put it in a shoulderbag, and get a pair of 210's...or a pair of MarkBass NY604's...which are amazing.
  9. Jimmy Stump

    Jimmy Stump

    Jan 27, 2010
    I own the Markbass F1 and love it. Personally, I cant tell the difference between an F1 and a LMIII. The controls are identical but the F1 is a class D power amp. I like the looks of the F1 a little more too.

    The wonder in Markbass are the 2 filters - Vintage Loudspeaker Emulator and Variable Preshape Filter. Set your EQ relatively flat and playing around with those 2 filters should get you anything you want.

    500 W into 4 ohms is plenty of juice for me.
  10. John Wentzien

    John Wentzien

    Jun 25, 2007
    Elberta, AL
    Artist:TC Electronic RH450 bass system (original test-pilot)
    Gotta chime in for the TC....never been happier!
  11. Jaco who?

    Jaco who?

    May 20, 2008
    If you're used to the output from an SWR SM400, and are obsessed with 3.5 to 5.1 lb heads vs. 16 or 17 lb heads (I'm not), the plain old yesterdays news Genz Benz shuttle 6.0 might be all you need. Try one and see. Can't beat the customer support.
  12. Radek


    Jun 12, 2008
    I've seen my NEOX-212T being better than many 4x10"... It's powerful enough with Shuttle6.0 to be HEARD with 100w full tube amp guitarist and loud drummer. So much fun with its effortless volume, that's even with the mid-scoop setting in eq.
  13. Stumbo

    Stumbo Wherever you go, there you are. Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 11, 2008
    the Cali Intergalctic Mind Space
    Song Surgeon slow downer software- full 4 hour demo
  14. doc540


    Jul 28, 2003
    Beaumont, Texas
    Another path: build a sealed, ported cab and have a ventilated, drop-in compartment for a small, D class head.

    Same as the Faux Ten Bassman, but with a much smaller pre/power unit.


  15. jam.majors


    Mar 24, 2009
    Louisville, Ky
    I love the faux bassman! That is fantastic!
  16. lo-freq

    lo-freq aka UFO

    Jan 19, 2003
    DFW, Texas
    The pictured item is an open-back cabinet -- not practical for getting low frequencies at any volume -- it is cute, though.
    As doc540 pointed out, the cabinet should be either sealed or ported.
  17. nervous

    nervous Supporting Member

    Jan 5, 2010
    Beautiful Central, NY
    It's a funny thing, this forum. I woke up this morning pretty convinced I needed an Eden WT550 or 800 with a couple Eden 2x10/4x10 cabs and I am now off to bed wondering how I am going to survive without a full TC Electronics rig. And, I missed a key part of that set-up by 30 minutes this afternoon.

    Interesting day....Can't wait to see what tomorrow brings
  18. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    svt/810. come on, dude, do some heavy lifting and make yourself feel really good! if it's not modern enough for you, add a tweeter.


    just kidding...btw, swr makes one called the amplite, but haven't heard it. but all the amps named off so far are going to have what you're looking for. just depends on what rings your bell the loudest.
  19. No one is chiming in for the Eden WTX500 so I will carry the banner...
    Love it - but dont use the onboard compressor, ( use an Aphex "Punch Factory" instead.)
    Use it with an Eden 210XST for 90% of my gigs

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