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Recommend me an amp...

Discussion in 'Amps, Mics & Pickups [DB]' started by Bigthumper, Oct 27, 2013.


  1. Bigthumper

    Bigthumper

    Oct 5, 2010
    New York
    Hi All,

    My Gallien Kreuger MB150, which I bought in 1991 has finally died.

    I've used it on 100's of gigs so it really needs replacing, I think repairing it is pointless.

    Anyway, I am a bit out of touch with what's available amp-wise these days for upright.
    Anyone out there want to give some advice?

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Don Sibley

    Don Sibley

    Jun 27, 2005
    Fort Worth, TX
    Oh boy, here we go . . .

    I have not yet found a combo to replace my MB150 though many seem to be happy with Phil Jones and Genz-Benz products. Once you consider separate amp/cab rigs you'll find yourself in a giant rabbit hole without end.

    I'm currently very happy with my Acoustic Image / Big E - MAS45 rig.
     
  3. rickwolff

    rickwolff CGJ Emeritus (Certified Gear Junkie) Retired??? Supporting Member

    +1 on Phil Jones. I really like my Super Flight Case. Hard to believe what a big rich sound comes out of those little speakers (although that seems to be the way things are going - see Don's comment above re: BigE 45). I never used an MB150 so I don't know how to compare/contrast.

    Also, A new TC Electronic 2x8 with 250 watts is coming soon. I'd be interested in looking at that.
     
  4. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa, Product Support-Genz Benz
    What about finding a good tech to restore your GB-150?
     
  5. Ric Vice

    Ric Vice Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2005
    Olivette, Missouri
    +1 The Gallien Krueger MBS/MBE combo is a very sturdy little workhorse. I owned it's predecessors the 200MB Series I and Series II.

    They had one of the best EQ sections for Double Bass ever designed. I'd certainly have it evaluated, before I just chucked it for

    another amp. While, there are new amps that have come along the your GK is one of the still the smallest and lightests amp out
    there.

    Ric
     
  6. Don Sibley

    Don Sibley

    Jun 27, 2005
    Fort Worth, TX
    This is why I keep mine in spite of it's limitations in volume. You can't ask for a more simple load-in and set up. As long as you don't push the gain too far it's a pretty accurate sound as well.

    I've repaired mine twice over the last 15 years and it just keeps going.
     
  7. Violen

    Violen Instructor in the Vance/Rabbath Method Banned

    Apr 19, 2004
    Kansas City Metro Area
    Endorsing Artist: Conklin Guitars (Basses)
    Ibanez Promethean. I love it so much.
     
  8. Ric Vice

    Ric Vice Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2005
    Olivette, Missouri
    Violen,
    They were very nice amplifiers, unfortunately Ibanez stopped building them sometime ago. Perhaps you could find one used, but since they were only manufactured for a couple of years, you don't see them very often.

    Ric
     
  9. Violen

    Violen Instructor in the Vance/Rabbath Method Banned

    Apr 19, 2004
    Kansas City Metro Area
    Endorsing Artist: Conklin Guitars (Basses)
  10. TroyK

    TroyK Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2003
    Seattle, WA
    I played ...I don't know, hundreds of gigs on one and mostly loved it. Certainly for ease. At times, it sounded perfect, though some specific combinations of rooms and drummers made for bad nights with it.

    I sold mine and have had an AI combo and currently have 2 EA setups. One iAmp 500 combo and a micro head with a 10" Wizzy speaker.

    Both of the EAs are objectively much better amps sonically than the GK was. Both have a lot more clean, usable headroom. The micro/wizzy setup is nearly 20lbs lighter. I bought both pieces used here at different times. The 500 combo is better across the board and better for anything rock-like, which is less that 1% of what I play, but it's heavier. The 10" as an extension to the combo, scales further still.

    The AI combos...I don't love the sound and I found it to be a bit akward to carry around, though it is lighter. I had a piano trio gig for about a year in a good room with a good piano and it was great there, but it didn't always scale to the room and occasion for me. It could be loud enough, there was just a sound that I didn't love. It was probably in there, but I just couldn't always get it out, like I can with the EA amps. Some people feel exactly the opposite. I sold mine to fund the 2nd EA rig.

    Nothing wrong with the GKs, you could buy a newer used one for $400 or so if you look and wait and/or get yours repaired. Whether they are as good or better than modern alternatives is a matter of taste, the fact is though that they aren't the lightest choice anymore and haven't been for a while.

    If I lost everything in a fire, I would replace the EA Micro Head and Wizzy the next day and maybe pick up an extra Wizzy cabinet when the time was right. Maybe an old AI, GK or EA amp head as a backup when a deal fell in my lap.

    I haven't tried the Phil Jones or Genz Benz, I hear they are great as are a few other new choices. Hope that helps a little.
     
  11. Ric Vice

    Ric Vice Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2005
    Olivette, Missouri
  12. pi_r_squared

    pi_r_squared

    Sep 3, 2008
    There may be real pros on here who would laugh at the idea, but I've been playing a Peavey KB300 (keyboard) amp as a combo amp for BG and Upright for close to a year and really like it. The bottom end of a keyboard is well below even a low B, and the upper end found harmonics I never knew were there (be that good or bad). It's not huge on power (don't remember the rating) but the only time I've ever come up short was a playing a benefit gig outdoors on the shore of a lake, not sure if many combos would do that job. It also has 3 separate channels, can be handy if you want to tweak the setup for a couple of different style songs.
     
  13. Violen

    Violen Instructor in the Vance/Rabbath Method Banned

    Apr 19, 2004
    Kansas City Metro Area
    Endorsing Artist: Conklin Guitars (Basses)
    Pi, i used a full frequency Peavey amp for years for my main rock/metal rig. Even used it on a couple of jazz gigs. I wouldn't laugh and no one else should. Full frequency amps solve a lot of problems for basses.
     
  14. Hi.

    +1 to that from me as well.

    Unless there's something You really dislike about the GK, or just want a NEW amp, I'd at least get an estimate of the repair.

    You've stick to it this long, and this is probably its first major failure, so why give up on it now?

    There's a lot of knowledgeable techs in TB who are willing to at least help narrow down the possibilities of why Your amp doesn't work, so just out of curiosity, what it does/doesn't do?

    Regards
    Sam
     
  15. If you like the 150, why not get another one? It lasted you over 20 years, seems you got your money's worth and could get your money's worth out of another.
     
  16. Bigthumper

    Bigthumper

    Oct 5, 2010
    New York
    Hi Guys,

    Thanks for all your input and replies, very helpful to me!
    It has given good service but I am thinking now that it's probably best to retire it and get something new, it's pretty old now and amps have come a long way in the last 20 years. I am keen to get something a but more powerful so I'll probably go the way of separate head and speaker.
    The AI stuff I have heard good things about, so that's appealing to me right now...but I will check out the suggestions here for sure.....
    Thanks again
     
  17. Don Sibley

    Don Sibley

    Jun 27, 2005
    Fort Worth, TX
    I can offer a big endorsement for the new Clarus+. The preamp is simply amazing. It stays so true even when pushed to the limit. The new EQ is well tuned for DB and highly effective. I'm supremely happy with mine. The only other integrated head I can think of in that arena is the TecAmp Puma which costs 60% more and has fewer features.
     
  18. I use a Genz Benz Shuttle 3T-10. Works great for small gigs, for bigger gigs I run it post EQ into the house PA.

    IMHO the GB neo bass cabs can't be beat for sound to weight ratio!
     
  19. Ric Vice

    Ric Vice Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2005
    Olivette, Missouri
    I really loved the Shuttle 3.0 10T but I believe they are no longer available from Genz Benz, as they have been discontinued.

    Ric
     
  20. geoffbassist

    geoffbassist UK Double Bassist Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 17, 2006
    UK
    Founder - Discover Double Bass
    I'm a big fan of Euphonic Audio cabs and the Acoustic Image Clarus. I would love to try the EA doubler though. EA or AI would be my first choices.
     

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