Poor person's Acoustic Image?

Discussion in 'Amps, Mics & Pickups [DB]' started by paulhenry, Jan 25, 2020.

  1. paulhenry

    paulhenry Supporting Member

    Dec 30, 2019
    Hi all,
    I'm a recent enrollee at TB, and I posted something like this over in the BG forum, not understanding the (BG) and (DB) inits after the forums threads. In any case, I still got kind and wonderful advice there, plus the suggestion to try it here. So:

    I play upright, not well, but improving. I gig occasionally, not big places, and I'm quite fond of Acoustic Image amps. I have a used Contra Series 1 which mostly does the job for me. But I am lazy, and I want to find a rig that's light, say in the 22 lb. range, give or take. But I need to find something that's about half the price of a new Contra, because my big gear savings account is earmarked for a better intrument. Is this impossible?
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2020
    Keith Rawlings likes this.
  2. Ed Fuqua

    Ed Fuqua

    Dec 13, 1999
    Columbia SC
    Chuck Sher publishes my book, WALKING BASSICS:The Fundamentals of Jazz Bass Playing.
    It's OK, turnabout is fair play, considering the number of posts BG folks have done over here, suggesting Rotosounds in the STRINGS forum or, more recently, talking about a couple of decades old Stingray in the DO OLDER BASSES SOUND BETTER in a thread where folks are talking about DBs a couple hundred years old.
    Rather than a combo, have you looked into a small head and light speaker cabinet? When I use an amp (which is starting to be more and more since I moved down south; louder audiences, rooms not conducive to music, less than competent sound people, etc.), I have a Walter Woods (7lbs) and a GK MBE112 (12lbs). The head only offerings from AI weigh in at about 3 lbs, find (or build) a lightweight 1 12" cabinet, hey, there you go...
  3. John Chambliss

    John Chambliss Supporting Member

    Nov 11, 2005
    Memphis, TN
    Another good separate head is the Euphonic Audio Iamp Doubler. Many bassists are upgrading to the Doubler II and the first generation can be bought used at a great price.
    BarfanyShart, Groove Doctor and Earl like this.
  4. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    I was wondering what was going to happen on this front. Glad to hear that Eschew© is not the only gear in your closet. Welcome to back to the good old southern hospitality! Kick ye' feet up...sit a spell.
  5. paulhenry

    paulhenry Supporting Member

    Dec 30, 2019
    Yes, a lightweight head/cabinet combo would work just fine. Isn't the GK you mentioned a combo not a cab? So you use the Walter Woods head with it? You're the second person to suggest a DIY cabinet. I have the background for that, so it's also a possibility. Thanks.

    I've noticed that tc electronics offers a lightweight 200W bass head and a 2x8" cabinet. I have a BG friend that likes their stuff, but I have no idea how that might work with an upright.
  6. GK have some nice light combos that sound pretty good. Start by setting the EQ to flat.....
    -2 +1 +2 -2 for B LM HM T (or thereabouts).

    +1 to EA amps.

    Or post a Wanted ad for a used Contra.
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  7. Ed Fuqua

    Ed Fuqua

    Dec 13, 1999
    Columbia SC
    Chuck Sher publishes my book, WALKING BASSICS:The Fundamentals of Jazz Bass Playing.
    No, it's the same size cabinet, but just a speaker cabinet. There was one for sale here(talk bass), but I can't remember how recently.
    They don't make'm anymore, but they still pop up used...
  8. Ed Fuqua

    Ed Fuqua

    Dec 13, 1999
    Columbia SC
    Chuck Sher publishes my book, WALKING BASSICS:The Fundamentals of Jazz Bass Playing.
    Lot to miss about NYC!
  9. JeffKissell

    JeffKissell Supporting Member

    Nov 21, 2004
    Soquel, CA
    I agree with others regarding a separate head and speaker vs a combo amp, that way you can use the same amp with different speakers. TC, Trace Elliot and Gallien Kruger all make small inexpensive heads and speakers that should fit in your price range. Do some searches in the Amps, Mic & Cabs [DB] forum, there are plenty of good, light, options.

    Trace Elliot ELF 1x10 impressions
    TC Bam200

    The speaker cabinets are trickier to search for but a small single eight or ten inch speaker would replace the contra just fine.

    Happy hunting and good luck.
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2020
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  10. Eric Hochberg

    Eric Hochberg

    Jul 7, 2004
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  11. Phil Rowan

    Phil Rowan Supporting Member

    Mar 2, 2005
    Brooklyn, NY
    Always some sorta trade off, eh? :-/. Anyway, sounds like you’ve got your reproduction of your acoustic sound using amplification worked out alright.
    Chris Fitzgerald likes this.
  12. I'm using an Eden WTX500 and an Eden EX1124. More directional than the Contra. Or I'll use the Contra with the Eden Ex1124 as an extension. Both work well.
  13. bherman

    bherman Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 30, 2009
    Grand Junction, CO
    I also use the TC Bam and find it to be a good poor mans substitute for the AI. Fewer features, not as much power, but for $149 its one heck of a deal. I use mine with a Doubleshot that I picked up used. Its a great sounding combo. I have not tried the Elf cabs but I did try the head and didn't like the baked-in color. People seem to like the cab. If you keep watching the classifieds sooner or later an inexpensive 110 will show up.
    Matt Ides, Ric Vice and Michael Drost like this.
  14. Ed Fuqua

    Ed Fuqua

    Dec 13, 1999
    Columbia SC
    Chuck Sher publishes my book, WALKING BASSICS:The Fundamentals of Jazz Bass Playing.
    Yeah, but it has its perks, too. Branford's quartet played here last week and I loaned Eric Revis my German bass (since he was doing the bass du jour thing and the college bass was Not Happening), got to hang out with the band in the hotel bar, swap stories. Last night, a buddy from NYC Claire Daly was playing in Savannah, so drove down and got to sit in with that band. And my friend Dan Greenblatt is coming in from Seattle in a couple of weeks, got a few gigs and a workshop scheduled with him.
  15. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    Claire Daly rocks. I saw her heading up a 5-baritone frontline at a jazz festival a few years ago.
  16. Another option might be a used Genz Benz Shuttle 3.0-10T. And since the amp could be removed y loosening two screws with handwheels you have both a combo amp if you want it compact and a single carry item and separate amp and can in case you want to use a different cab.
    Only 180 watts as is with the 8 ohms speaker, 300 watts with 4 ohms.
  17. james condino

    james condino Spruce dork Supporting Member Commercial User

    Sep 30, 2007
    asheville, nc
    If you already have a bass and an AI Contra, anything more should pay for itself from gigs...
    DrMole, Ric Vice, HateyMcAmp and 2 others like this.
  18. neddyrow

    neddyrow www.simmerinstew.com Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2011
    Cortland, NY
    my cheapest, lightest, loudest setup was - AI Focus I series iii + Ampeg 210 AV

    not the best or the exact tone i was looking for but, it served we well for 200+ gigs the last few years.
    james condino likes this.
  19. unbrokenchain

    unbrokenchain Supporting Member

    Jun 8, 2011
    Black Mountain, NC
    Never had an AI rig to compare it to, but +1 on GK MB series. I like the old ones better but my MB112ii is pretty versatile. My other rig is TE Elf head with PJB cab 27. The head is ok, a better EQ section and I'd call it "good," but the cab 27 is wonderful. Honestly sometimes wish I could have the GK amp with the PJB speakers.
  20. dperrott

    dperrott Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 3, 2005
    Jersey City
    Once I found two cabinets on the street. One flite cabinet and the GK. I only took the flite. I regret not taking the GK