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Power Amp

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by grungtertl, Mar 6, 2005.


  1. grungtertl

    grungtertl

    Aug 2, 2004
    I am looking into buying a power amp.
    I have the Bergantino HT115 and HT210
    I have a SVP - Pro and BBE 362 Sonic Maximizer.
    I play a G&L L-2000 with custom electronics.
    Im using a GK 1001RB right now, but i think its a better choice to get a power amp, especially for the SVP-PRO.
    What is the best power amp for me, is a tube power amp the way to go?
     
  2. Joe Beets

    Joe Beets Guest

    Nov 21, 2004
    The only power amp that will work with your setup is a QSC PLX3002. Get one and you won't be disappointed. ;) ;) ;)
     
  3. grungtertl

    grungtertl

    Aug 2, 2004
    The only power amp that will work with my setup?
     
  4. inazone

    inazone

    Apr 20, 2003
    Colorado
    Get a crest CA 6 or 9, great performance with berg cabs. If weight is a concern, then get a qsc plx or stewart.
     
  5. the dude

    the dude Supporting Member

    Sep 19, 2004
    Indy
    +1

    Haul the tone. The CA9 delivers in spades.
     
  6. Nothing against any other brand but if you don't at least try a CA9 you're missing out. The CA6 is adequate, but for a few more dollars and just a couple pounds more the CA9 is more powerful and you'll probably never have to buy another power amp for BASS. If you get a deal on a used CA6 go for it. One thing to keep in mind. The CA Crests sold in the USA only have 5-way binding posts and NO Speakons which pi$$es me off, but I've dealt with it. If you want a lighter amp the CA might be a bit heavy too, but more than worth the struggle. I don't even bridge it or turn it all the way up, which is a first for me, talk about head room. :D
     
  7. grungtertl

    grungtertl

    Aug 2, 2004
    I wasnt looking on spending much more than 650 or 700, what is a good power amp for that price, should i look into a Crest, or are there other good ones?
     
  8. Also, I was in a local music store the other day were the owner wanted to try my rig, the Demeter 201s and the CA9. He had a Eden Navigator and some light weight switching amp. He had his amp bridged and turned up about 3/4 of the way.
    He tried my rig and liked it a lot but was not that thrilled with the Demeter 201s as tastes vari of course. We then plugged his Eden Nav into my CA9..... heh heh ... This guy's eye about popped right out of his friggin' head. Really it was quite "night and day." Also I was using one channel of the CA9 about at 2:00. The cab was a Accugroove Bill Dickens Signature. I also let him play my Sadowsky NYC PJ4. Glad there was no drool to whip off, but it was close. Life is good.
     
  9. You can look for used, but I think my CA9 was like $850.00 shipped. Shop my Brother.
     
  10. tombowlus

    tombowlus If it sounds good, it is good Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2003
    North central Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    Well, I finally had a chance to do a "taste test" between some of my SS power amps last Friday. I set up a rig that I am very familiar with (two EA VL-210's, Eden Navigator into my PLX 3002). I have used the PLX 3002 with the Navigator for several years, and I have always been really happy. The VL-210's are very revealing of what the rest of your gear is contributing. For instruments, I used my Thunderbird and my modified DeArmond Pilot 5 Deluxe (it has Bartolini pickups and an Aguilar OBP-1 installed).

    First up, I played through the "standard" rig for a while. Quite happy. Then, I tried out the Stewart World 2.1 that I recently picked up from Gruuv (thanks again!). Rather to my surprise, I noticed a noted increase in low end fullness, punch, and authority. I set the gain stages on the amps to approximately equal volume. I did not scientifically calibrate them, but I think I got sufficiently close to make for a meaningul comparison. At even volumes, the Stewart was just more full, with more taught sounding bass. The mids seemed a bit smoother, too. Again, I was surprised at how different these amps sounded. Prior tests had always been at very low levels (with wife and kids in the house), and the amps sounded more similar, but when you get up to "gig volume", there is a marked difference. I am really loving the Stewart at this point!

    Finally, I lug over my CA9 (actually, two of them in one rack, which needless to say is a heavy pig!). This amp is rated at 900 watts per side, or 1,800 watts bridged mono. The Stewart does 2,100 watts bridged mono, and the PLX 3002 is rated at 3,000 watts into this load. But, despite the above, the CA9 blew the other two out of the water! :eek: Again, with volume levels approximated, it was even more full sounding, punchy, tight, and dynamic than the World 2.1 (and it really, really made the PLX 3002 sound thin in comparison), but it also had more clarity on the high end. This just blew my mind! In the overall volume department, the CA9 was tops, followed by the Stewart, then the QSC - again, the inverse of their stated power ratings.

    So, needless to say, one of my CA9's now resides in what I call my "Solid State Rack" - Navigator=>CA9. I'm still debating between this setup and my "Tube Rack" - Aguilar DB 659=>DB 728 - but that is another story. :p

    Also, FWIW, I picked up one CA9 on ebay for $699 shipped, and my second one I saw at a Music Go Round in Columbus for $499. :eyebrow: I presumed it was broken at that price, but after I had them fire it up and it worked just fine, I first paid for it, and then told them what a good amp it was. ;) I don't think that they new what they had...

    That's my story, and I am sticking to it. All I can say is, Jim Bergantino was right (again!)! :p
     
  11. inazone

    inazone

    Apr 20, 2003
    Colorado
    There was a heated thread about a year ago about these amps. Im glad to see other people posting that have had the same responce as mine with the CA9. My findings were the same as yours Tom, cool.

    The amps mentioned in this thread are all good amps with different features and performance.

    btw, I must have got a great deal on my CA9. I got it for $675, new, with warrenty and unopened. I got it from a local store.
     
  12. inazone

    inazone

    Apr 20, 2003
    Colorado
    Tom, if you get time could you do a a/b with the CA9 and db728. I played the db728 the other day and it has me thinking. I didnt have a lot of time with it but it cought my attention.

    I think this is somewhat related with the original post, if not sorry. :)
     
  13. tombowlus

    tombowlus If it sounds good, it is good Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2003
    North central Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    I was also able to do this on Friday! The difference was primarily "excellent SS amp" versus "excellent tube amp." The CA9 had tighter, punchier lows, whereas the DB 728 had more massive, weighty, rumbley, but slightly tubby sounding lows. Both were great in the low end, but each had characteristics that would make it good/bad for specific tonal goals or musical genres. The DB 728 felt like it was a lot louder, though I was comparing 400 watts to 1,800 watts, so I'd say that there is something to the notion that "tube watts" seem to be perceived as louder than "SS watts." Tonally, the 728 has really beautiful high end, and I give it the clear advantage in this regard. Midrange is good on both, but a different in subtle ways. I can see one or the other being preferred in the midrange, depending on what cabs you were using. I did try them both with some overdrive from my Chandler Tube Drive, and 728 just took it and ran, and sounded freaking awesome! The CA9, on the other hand, had me scratching my head and tweaking controls on the Chander. I just couldn't get a sound that seemed "organic" or anywhere near as good as it did through the 728.

    So, as you can see, it's really a preference thing of tube versus SS amps. Both of these are top notch examples of their respective camps.

    Hope this helps, Tom.
     
  14. inazone

    inazone

    Apr 20, 2003
    Colorado
    Tom, thanks for your coments. Your thoughts were about the same as mine. With regards to volume, the 728 was louder than I thought it would be but I wasnt able to crank it. Im surprised to hear that it can get as loud or louder than the CA9. btw, Ive never had to bridge the CA9.
     
  15. tombowlus

    tombowlus If it sounds good, it is good Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2003
    North central Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    I was not bridging the CA9, either, so my comments are - in fact - misleading. I apologize. I should have used the 2 channels at 4 ohms rating of 800/800 watts, as I was using two 4 ohm Accugroove cabs, one on each channel of the CA9. The DB 728 was set to 2 ohms, and of course puts out 400 watts into both cabs. To be honest, I didn't push either amp until my ears bled, so it may be that the CA9 could ultimately go louder, but at similar gain settings on my preamp, the 728 was a good bit louder.
     
  16. tombowlus

    tombowlus If it sounds good, it is good Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2003
    North central Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    Looking over my notes (yes, I actually took notes to keep all of my observations intact! I'm sick, what can I say!?!), with regard to the CA9 versus the 728, I wrote:

    "728 has loads more girth, and very full low end - not as taught as the Crest, but with EQ it can get close. Less high end, but can EQ in some highs. 728 is more quiet, overall."
     
  17. Quintheskimo

    Quintheskimo Guest

    Aug 24, 2004
    Los Angeles
    Tom, you rule!

    How has your new Mesa Boogie Strategy compared?
     
  18. tombowlus

    tombowlus If it sounds good, it is good Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2003
    North central Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    It turns out that one of the channels on the Strategy needed some repairs, so it is in the shop right now. I will report back once it's up and runnig!
     
  19. TheChariot

    TheChariot

    Jul 6, 2004
    Boston, MA
    At $650-$700, I think you could look into a used QSC PLX, or used Crest. I guess you could look into an RMX series, but its really not worth it when your so close to a lighter weight amp. Start shoppin'.
     
  20. tombowlus

    tombowlus If it sounds good, it is good Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2003
    North central Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    I think BassNW has a used World 2.1 for under $600...