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RBI vs. Ashdown for warm, clean tones

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Soulfinger, Feb 4, 2006.

  1. Soulfinger


    Sep 20, 2004
    Houston, TX
    Here's my deal---I've been playing SWR forever, but my style has changed and my tastes have changed, but my amps haven't.

    I played an ashdown ABM head and fell in love with the thick, rich sound. I didn't have a lot of highs, just a big meaty sound that I want.

    I'd love to get the ABM 500 head, but it's $900, which is a lot of cash. Would an RBI preamp get me to the same place for a lot less money? I already have a big power amp, so I got that part covered. I know that the RBI if famous for adding overdrive to the sound, which is not really something I'm looking for in my basic sound. I just want big, round B-15 type sound. I've never been able to play an RBI---I've never seen one in a store.
  2. pablomigraine

    pablomigraine Commercial User

    Feb 9, 2005
    New York
    VP & Managing Director - Willcox Basses
    hmmm..... in a word? NO. I have owned and used the sansamp programmable bass driver and the rackmount RBI. Only difference really is that the RBI has a mid control.

    I'm now using the Ashdown ABM EVO II 500 exculsively. The Sanamp will not get you to the same place. I suppose if you leave drive and presence almost all the way down, you'll get a basic tone that's fat like the Ashdown, but you wont have any of the EQ possibilities, or the Valve Drive, or the footswitchable Flat / Shape or the balalalalala

    The Ashdown is the tops. You will never be happier. Here, I'll give you some ammunition: The actual dealer cost on an Ashdown ABM EVO II 500 is in the area of ~ $600

    now go beat 'em down!!
  3. sloppysubs


    Nov 24, 2002
    Swansboro, NC
    If you already have a power amp and want a pre, don't count out the Ashdown pre's either.

    But the 500 is a no fail.
  4. adept_inept


    Jan 9, 2006
    want a good deal? go call up basscentral.com

    i'm sure you can get one free shipping for anywhere from 700-800

  5. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    I own a SansAmp RBI and like it a lot. However I would not recommend it to someone looking for a warm tone with lots of mids.

    OTOH, I would recommend the Ampeg SVP-Pro. Yes, some users report noise issues, but mine is very quiet. Now I have little experience with Ashdown gear, but the SVP-Pro can get you warmth and tons of mids.
  6. chaosMK


    May 26, 2005
    Albuquerque, NM
    Hi-fi into an old tube amp
    I used a Sansamp BDDI with an Ashdown head and got some great tone for metal. Ordinarily- at least with the bass I use (an Ibanez)- Ashdown doesnt have the sharpest tone for modern sounding metal, but with the BDDI it kicked.
  7. pablomigraine

    pablomigraine Commercial User

    Feb 9, 2005
    New York
    VP & Managing Director - Willcox Basses
  8. dave_bass5


    May 28, 2004
    London, UK.
    what about getting the cheaper ABM300 EVOII and running that in to your power amp.
    im going to be doing the same latter on in the year.