Power Amp Decisions

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Jeff Corallo, Feb 7, 2002.

  1. Jeff Corallo

    Jeff Corallo

    May 30, 2000
    The more I look, the harder it is to make a decision! I've narrowed my power amp search down to:

    1) QSC RMX 1850HD - 40+ lbs - $429 plus shipping
    2) QSC PLX 1602 - 20+ lbs - $549
    3) Stewart World 1.2 - 11 lbs - $719 plus shipping

    The lighter the amp, the more $ it costs. The Stewart World looks good except I have read it runs very hot - nothing like thermal shut down in the the middle of a set. And I just read in another thread about QSC fans being noisy.

    Currently, my rack has a SVP-PRO, Korg Tuner, DBX 266 compressor. I'm driving an Ampeg PR1832HE cabinet which can be bi-amped. All I need is a crossover. Any thoughts? :confused:
  2. Hi Jeff, I have owned the World 1.2 and have recently purchased the PLX2402 (should arrive today). I did have the thermal shutdown problems with the World 1.2 and overall was not very impressed with its power output. I was using an Acme cab, which is probably another reason why I wasn't too hip on it. Anyhow, one solution that would cost more money, but might be good, is to find the Stewart World 1.6 or 2.1. Both of these are two rack spaces and have cooling fans.

    I originally got the World 1.2 because I wanted a "lightweight" rig. But with a rack case, preamp, power conditioner, etc., I didn't find I was too much ahead in terms of light weight. Now I'm using an Ashdown ABM900 integrated head that weighs about 70 pounds and am used to it. So when I decided to try the separates thing again, I wasn't too concerned about the 11 pounds vs. 21 pounds thing anymore.
  3. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    Simple with the two QSCs: the PLX is US made (RMX is Korean), is lighter, shallower and is more efficient in terms of power transfer plus has better specs all the way around. For $120 extra, it's a no-brainer.

    Stewarts are known for being touchy about overheating and you don't see sound companies who need amps to drive big PA systems for hours on end in tough environments using Stewarts. Forget about the 9 pounds you're saving, 20 pounds is still wicked light for 1600 watts.

    The PLX price has dropped recently (used to be over $700) so take advantage of the new lower price point.
  4. Brendan


    Jun 18, 2000
    Austin, TX
    I like the thought of the SWR 750- the thing is designed to handle the 2.6 ohms of a 4 and 8 ohm cab at once, which makes matching impedances come down to what kinda deal you can get....
  5. Jerry J

    Jerry J Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2000
    P-town, OR
    Man, go with the PLX. I have the 2402 and am looking at the 1602 for a second setup with my Alembic F-1X and Demeter 201. I'm very impressed with QSC's PLX amps. This is IMHO. :)

    Brianrost hit the nail on the head when he said that there aren't any pro sound companies using Stewart's as far as I know.
  6. chucko58


    Jan 17, 2002
    Silicon Valley, CA, USA
    I paid for all my gear myself. Well, me and MasterCard.
    I hate to correct brother Brian, but the RMX is Chinese made. I know, I just got one a couple of weeks ago.

    The RMX amps do weigh a ton, and you shouldn't underestimate that! So far I'm happy with my RMX 1850HD. But I haven't really pushed it yet - just got my Low B-2s this week, and it's not cool to rattle walls in the house when the wife is home, which is all the time. :(

    If you can afford it, go for the PLX. You can't go wrong with them.

    If you do go with an RMX, make it the 1850HD. This unit is designed to handle 2 ohm loads in stereo, and 4 ohm bridged loads.
  7. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    I got a used Stewart 2.1 for roughly $750 shipped. I play in loud bands and it hardly gets warm.

    I'm sure you can do even better on a used 1.6.

    BIGREDSIX Supporting Member


    I've been using a Stewart World 2.1 with a Demeter VTBP-201 preamp pushing an Eden D410XLT (8 ohms) as my main live rig for several years now. It absolutely kills and I can carry the entire rack with just one hand! This became necessary after back surgery in '98. I will ocasionally use two Bag End S15X-D cabs in place of the Eden, depending on the room.
    My previous main live rig consisted of a 70's Alembic F2B preamp and a Crown Power Base2 power amp pushing two original SWR Goliath 4x10's. That rig also kicks major booty (I still use it for rehearsal). The Crown weighs alot more however, so I rarely use it out anymore.
    The only problems I've experienced with the Stewart/Demeter/Eden rig are the guitarist bitchin' about me blowin' him away! Nuff said....
  9. Chuck M

    Chuck M Supporting Member

    May 2, 2000
    San Antonio, Texas
    I'm using a Demeter preamp, a Stewart World 1.6 and an Eden 410XLT. Tone to die for and the amp runs cool to the touch on loud gigs.

    I also have a Stewart PA-1000 in another rack with an SWR Grand Prix. It also runs cool but I use the bigger amp on loud gigs.

    I've also used Carver and Mackie power amps and the tone of the Stewarts amps just amazed me when I got the first one. They are the best sounding power amps I've used but my experience is limited to those three brands of power amps.

  10. boogiebass


    Aug 16, 2000
    I'd look closely at a Mackie 1400i if you're serious about those QSC's. No opinion of the Stewart, never used one.
  11. Jerry J

    Jerry J Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2000
    P-town, OR
    With all due respect to Boogiebass regarding the Mackie 1400i. They are so heavy( close to 40 pounds) and I seem to remember that the depth makes it so it won't fit in a 14" deep rack. I really like the design of the K series Crowns and the C series Crests but they are just too heavy and long. The new prices on the Mackie's are pretty cool though. Good for the buyer.:D
  12. boogiebass


    Aug 16, 2000
    They fit in a standard SKB rack just fine. Weight is an issue, I suppose, if you think it's "heavy." Light/heavy, etc. are strictly subjective, however. It ain't no SVT, that's fershure. :D
  13. jerry

    jerry Doesn't know BDO Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 13, 1999
    I'll throw another vote towards the QSCPLX series!
    I have a 2402 and love it! I also still have some QSC poweramps I got back in the eighties, and they are still pounding doing P.A. duty....heavy tho!
    Aloha, Jerry
  14. Jeff Corallo

    Jeff Corallo

    May 30, 2000
    I take it that any Stewart World other than the 1.2 is ok to get. Is the cost difference between this and the QSC PLX series worth it?

    As for Mackie, I've talked to several people who have had problems with their reliability. I also run sound and have nothing but good to say about their boards.
  15. boogiebass


    Aug 16, 2000
    Yeah, I'm aware of some o' the issues a number of players have experienced. For me, I use an 808S powered mixer every single night to sing through and a 1400i in my bass rig every now and again. Never had a problem.
  16. Phat Ham

    Phat Ham

    Feb 13, 2000
    I'd stay away from newer Crowns. They got bought out a couple years ago by I forget who and since then the quality has gone way down. I've heard too many stories of (newer) Crowns crapping out to ever get one myself.
  17. Jeff Corallo

    Jeff Corallo

    May 30, 2000
    The lower level Crowns don't have limiters on them. Driving them into clipping could cause speaker damage. By the way, the Stewart 1.2
    doesn't have a limiter on it either. BassNW said that you don't need it on this amp :confused: Because this is a more modern class of amplifier than the Crown (I believe a class A/B), are the clipping characteristics different?
  18. chucko58


    Jan 17, 2002
    Silicon Valley, CA, USA
    I paid for all my gear myself. Well, me and MasterCard.
    Trust me, on any amp capable of pushing a kilowatt, you need a limiter! Driving any amp into clipping can lead to speaker damage. I think there's a communications failure somewhere... my general rule of thumb is to derate all salesmans' claims by 75%.

    Even the RMX amps have a built-in limiter and low cut filter, all switchable on a per-channel basis. And they're about the cheapest watts you can buy right now. So why would Crown and Stewart leave them off?