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Quality or Quantity?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Stan_da_man, Mar 5, 2008.


  1. Stan_da_man

    Stan_da_man

    Aug 29, 2006
    UK
    I have 2 Hartke 410TP's which make an 8x10 alu. coned monster which I love. Problem is the Ashdown Superfly I just bought has a fault that can't be fixed so I'll have to return it to get a refund. But my question is should I get a head that has better tone and less power or a head that has more power but not as good tone.

    The 2 heads I were thinking of were the Markbass Little Mark 250 (250w at 4 ohms) or the Peavey Tour 450 (450w at 4 ohms). How much difference would those 200w make at a gig or practice?

    Cheers.
     
  2. cnltb

    cnltb

    May 28, 2005
    I personally have always gone for quality over quantity.
    I am very happy with this approach
     
  3. Mushroo

    Mushroo Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2007
    Massachusetts, USA
    You would notice about a 3db increase in sound... noticeably louder, but not twice as loud. Personally I would go with the Peavey. They make good stuff!
     
  4. This is true, unless you are just barely getting the job done with the smaller head. The difference in sound between 'not quite enough' and 'just a little more than enough' can be huge.
     
  5. Stan_da_man

    Stan_da_man

    Aug 29, 2006
    UK
    But how big is that? Would that mean the Peavey head would be at 12 o clock and the Mark Bass 3 o clock?
     
  6. BillyRay

    BillyRay Supporting Member

    Jan 20, 2008
    Quebec
    Try them both, but I'd think that 200 watt into what is essentially a 8x10 is a bit thin, unless it was a really efficient 8x10. What are the sPL specs of the Hartke ?

    Also, wattage isn't set in stone, some companies are more optimistic than others about the output their amp create. Peavey and Carvin are in this category.
     
  7. alexclaber

    alexclaber Commercial User

    Jun 19, 2001
    Brighton, UK
    Director - Barefaced Ltd
    You're not really comparing heads with better or worse tone, you're comparing heads that are lighter or heavier. If you're moving two 4x10" cabs I don't see any advantage to a lightweight head!

    Alex

    P.S. The position of the volume/gain knobs has nothing to do with how powerful the amp is or how much power it's putting out. All amps have their gain staging calibrated differently - and far too many see very loud with the knobs turned low, which is impressive in the shop. It's only when you get the amp home that you realise that if you turn the knobs any higher the amp runs out of power, which leaves you with an oversensitive volume control and far less power than you thought you were buying.
     
  8. cnltb

    cnltb

    May 28, 2005
    I much agree with this post!!
     
  9. kevmc28

    kevmc28

    Feb 28, 2008
    Somerset, NJ, USA
    I think if you had a 4x10 and a 1x15 instread of two 4x10s you may be better off. That's a different issue, though.
     
  10. Brad Maestas

    Brad Maestas Gold Supporting Member

    Nov 26, 2003
    Oakland, CA
    +1 Alex. In your case, Stan, it'll be a bit of both I'm sure.

    For the last four years I've been without a vehicle so I tend to lean towards more headroom and less speakers. Most of the gigs where I have to take a rig, I just use a single 12. Every once in a while I bring another 12 if I need more volume and/or there's no PA.
     
  11. Rob Mancini

    Rob Mancini Guest

    Feb 26, 2008
    Why not get better tone AND more wattage, and get a Little Mark II? I've been seeing them used for the same price ballpark as these heads you named.

    However, if these are the two heads you've decided on, I say get the Markbass. It's (IMHO) the best sounding SS amp on the market. And unless you're screaming loud, you will probably not need any more than 250w. An SVT is only 300w at 4 ohms, and I don't know anyone who thinks they're underpowered.
     
  12. alexclaber

    alexclaber Commercial User

    Jun 19, 2001
    Brighton, UK
    Director - Barefaced Ltd
    Apples and oranges - an SVT has all the benefits of a valve output stage - gradual compression and soft limiting at clipping, plus added overdrive overtones adding more perceived loudness. That gives easily 6dB more perceived loudness, which equates to four times the power.

    Alex
     
  13. BassmanDk

    BassmanDk

    Nov 23, 2005
    Odense, Denmark
    Employee - 4Sound, Odense
    I agree: you can't compare the Markbass's 250 w with the SVT's 300w. Have you ever played them?
    To the OP: ever tried the bigger MarkBass with 500w?
    It sounds sweet and is pretty light still.

    But as a old Hartke man myself i have to say - The Hartke 3500. It was my first real amp. It sounds supernice, is friggin' loud and easy on the back. Hmm why did i sell? Oh well, a buddy and i are thinking about buying one just as a spare head.
     
  14. bassman639

    bassman639

    Dec 23, 2006
    northeast ,pa
    lots of good advice, other than the wallet and your back, 3db isn't all that much, it might to you, but lets say, you had your 410 cabs side by side and you have the same head set at the same settings,but ONE was 300 watts and the other 500 watts, now you play with the 500watt head first ,standing 3 feet in front,play for 5 min. now, you used the 300 watt head, the diff is like you standing 6feet in front not 3 feet,it might make a diff to you or not, i wouldn't want either heads but if i had to pick,i'd go with peavey,but thats me now,ok
     
  15. Rob Mancini

    Rob Mancini Guest

    Feb 26, 2008
    Listen, I used to gig in metal bands in the 80's with a V4B, which was only 100w of tube power, and I never ran out of power. Currently, I don't play quite that loud anymore, but I still do put the hammer down on occasion, and if I've ever used more than 50w worth of my LM2, I'd be surprised.
     
  16. alexclaber

    alexclaber Commercial User

    Jun 19, 2001
    Brighton, UK
    Director - Barefaced Ltd
    I bet you do, but not for very long. Peak vs sustained power ratio is huge on uncompressed bass guitar. Though with that quantity of cabs it won't take much power to get loud - and then you might as well get more power and leave one cab at home.

    Alex
     
  17. Rob Mancini

    Rob Mancini Guest

    Feb 26, 2008
    See, I disagree. I used to agree, but I recently went back to having a cab at ear level stacked on top of one on the floor. I never realized how much of a pain in the neck it was to try and guess your tone from the floor until I went back to ear level speakers. So now I hear my bass as the audience hears it, and I wouldn't have it any other way.
     

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