Played through a VR yesterday....

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by cheezewiz, Oct 14, 2006.

  1. cheezewiz


    Mar 27, 2002
    I got a chance to put an SVT VR through its paces yesterday. . I initially played it through a new Ampeg 810, and used my Sadowsky Metro RV5, and a Fender Jaguar with flats.

    It's a neat head for sure. It certainly sounds like an "SVT". It has all the volume you would ever need. To my ears though, there was just something missing. Tim Cole showed up a while later, and brought his Eden head (WT400), and his Sadowsky SA410 cab. Now this is almost identical to my rig...I normally use an Eden WT550 and a Sadowsky SA410. First thing we did was plug the VR
    into the Sadowsky SA410...ahhh....there it is. The head still retained the SVT tone, but was so much clearer and punchier at the same time. If I was going to use an all tube head, it would definitely be through this Sadowsky cab, and NOT through a fridge. The only other cab I'd even consider for this setup would be one of the Berg NV series.

    Then, for giggles, we thought we'd side by side the Ampeg stack with the Eden/Sadowsky combination. Both of us liked the Eden/Sadowsky better. It had a very tubelike tone, but it was so much clearer and detailed, while still being warm.
    Although we didn't get to side by side them, from what I recall of my Mesa 400+, I really preferred its tone to that of the VR too.

    This isn't a slam on the SVT at all, and if I had roadies and was playing really large venues, I'd certainly have one, but for my money, my tastes, my ears, and my gigs, you can't beat the Eden/Sadowsky setup. It certainly helps you can buy a brand new Eden WT550 and a brand new Sadowsky SA410 for less than the price of the VR head alone.
  2. Sounds awsome, i think one problem is the SVT cabs arent as good as they used to be.

    Not everyone is going to like the same thing, im personally really wanting to compare a mesa to my ampeg!

    Wish there were Berg or Sadowsky cabs over here (arent they made by the same person anyway? Im pretty sure the guy who does the bergs was at least in on the sadowskys and helped with the design or something?)
  3. And that Ampegs are overpriced (IMO)
  4. cheezewiz


    Mar 27, 2002

    Yeah, Jim Bergantino makes both the Berg and the Sadowsky cabs. I think one of the main reasons my Mesa 400+ sounded so awesome was that I used it with a Berg NV610.
  5. anderbass


    Dec 20, 2005
    Phoenix. Az.

    Great review, now I can scratch the VR, from my wish list.
  6. AndyMan

    AndyMan Commercial User

    Jun 17, 2000
    Columbus, Ohio
    That amp (SVT) only sounds good--really great--when you have it eq'd properly, and doesn't really shine unless it is played with a full band. It's an all or nothing thing with the SVT. I'd bet your Eden set up would get smoked in a heads up with the SVT in a real live on stage band situtation.
  7. One thing i have to concur with, as much as i love my SVT-II and 810, for home practice, it isnt in its element, i even get guitarists and drummers commenting on how awsome the bass sounds in a band situation tho :cool:
  8. cheezewiz


    Mar 27, 2002
    Very possible, but I'm not sure how you can say ANYTHING can "smoke" anything else. It's all about individual taste, isn't it? If by "smoked", you mean more volume, you're right, however, the VR and Fridge would have NOTHING in terms of volume on my Mesa 400+/Berg NV610 combo, which I would submit, would smoke the VR, in terms of volume, and tone.
    And my Eden set up gets used on stage, real live, in a band situation, pretty much every weekend. I have nothing against Ampeg or SVTs, I was just surprised I didn't like the VR more than I did.
  9. AndyMan

    AndyMan Commercial User

    Jun 17, 2000
    Columbus, Ohio
    I guess I would disagree with the concept of "individual taste" to a certain extent. Do we agree that there exists a hierarchy of "forms," some being greater, some lesser?
  10. Interstingly enough, this is the EXACT setup (SVT-VR, new ampeg 810, jaguar bass, not sure about the flats but maybe) that Pino Palladino is using on tour with The Who. Saw them tuesday night and went "oh my god, he's got 2 brand new Ampeg VR's!" I then proceeded to rock my face off and obliterate (temporarily) my hearing in my left ear (the right one not being pointed directly at the PA). Amazing show, Pino has big shoes to fill and he does a heck of a job at filling them.

    Just thought you Who gearheads might like to know.
  11. Tim Cole

    Tim Cole

    Jun 12, 2002
    Findlay, Ohio
    The VR is a great vintage sounding head, and to my recolletion......sounds just like the vintage SVT's. Still, like Pat....if I can only have one head (which is the case financially), I wont be offing my Eden any time soon.


    Nov 24, 2001
    New York,NY
    ...hmmmm, interesting...

  13. Headroom


    Apr 5, 2002
    As previously stated, the most relevant point that's brought up in any discussion of timbre is the systematic aspect. That is, how each element in the chain contributes to the resulting bass tone and the quality of that tone when placed within the context of the other sounds.

    I know this point is obvious, but it is also often overlooked (myself included).
  14. cheezewiz


    Mar 27, 2002
    Man, you gals are touchy. I think it's a great head. Just not for me right now. If I was Pino doing WHO tours, that head would be my FIRST stop.
  15. Headroom


    Apr 5, 2002

    I appreciate and thank you for the review Cheeze. I was commenting on the limitations of evaluating of a piece of equipment outside of a band-context. Perhaps you did and I was mistaken.
  16. kdogg


    Nov 13, 2005
    I think your onto something with this statement. It may be, that what you didn't care for was the svt 810. I had a similar reaction when I played through the same cabinet last year. I was looking to get something with more push then my 410, which the 810 certainly did, but I found the sound of the 810 a little lofi for my taste. I know its a great cabinet, but just not what I was looking for. I ended up going with the svt 610hlf, which has much of the mid range punch of the 810, but with a little more definition, even without the horn.
  17. burk48237

    burk48237 Supporting Member

    Nov 22, 2004
    Oak Park, MI
    I haven't played the VR, but I have played thru several SVT's as rental back-line including some vintage ones. I think they sound great on stage but IMHO they tend to get lost in the mix with their lack of definition. I miss a tweeter on my cab. Personally I prefer the Eden "sound", they have enough warmth to give you a vintage feel but enough upper mids to give you some definition. I've seen Pino a couple of times with his SVT rig and IMO his tone was muddy and I had to strain to listen to it. He is a monster player and I understand why he chosed the SVT but in all sincerity Entwistle got a much better live tone.
  18. brothernewt

    brothernewt Some people call me the stormtrooper of love...

    Apr 13, 2004
    Happyrock, OR

    At the risk of sounding contrary for the sake of it... I'll likely be unloading my WT-550 as soon it's repaired and returned from Eden. I'm very happy with my VR and as long as I can lift it, it will probably be the main rig (though I too am moving away from the Ampeg fridge for something tighter). To each their own huh? :)
  19. There are some very real issues with the SVT VR versus its vintage counterparts aside from where it may be being made. To the best of my knowledge, the SVT VR uses the power section of the SVT CL, and is NOT as close a copy of the original as possible in that respect, unlike its preamp. There's a big difference between the original SVT and the CL's power section which I've discussed in depth here before. While the SVT VR may have the preamp tone, it's not EXACTLY like the old hoss and that's important to remember.

    Another issue is the cabinet. I cannot STAND modern SVT810E's (which include the "AV" line as well). Even with my gigging old SVT, playing through a new 810E I was NOT a happy camper. The tone was wooly, underfined, and very bandwidth limited, ALL low mid honk with little of the girth, depth, and growl my old SVT (and Nemesis 810, BTW) cabs provide.

    I'm glad to see another fair review of the amp here rather than the cheerleader pieces you see elsewhere. Also, given Loud's decision to manufacture overseas, you also have to look into the worth of any warranty and the roadworthiness of the amp. Personally, I recommend anyone interested in the way an SVT is SUPPOSED to sound to seek out a vintage head AND cab and spend your money on something that has proven itself rather than put money in the pockets of Loud. I renew my call for a boycott of all Ampeg/Loud products.
  20. cheezewiz


    Mar 27, 2002
    Thats exactly how I thought it sounded PBG. It very well could have been a cabinet issue.
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