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Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by JonnyBassist, May 14, 2004.

  1. JonnyBassist


    Jan 3, 2004
    Eugene, OR
    Back in December I bought a $1200 setup at Guitar Center. I got a 350 watt ampeg head with a 1000 watt 4x10" cab.

    My friend, the other day, got a year old head (same watts, 350) and a 6x10" (brand new) for only $1100.

    He is capable of having more power than me now, I think his cab can hold 1200 or 1300 watts. But yeah. I got jakced, no?

    I mean, I've heard my setup used in a live situation and it does OKAY. Not too great. When competing against other guitar half stacks, it seems to get outpowered quite easily. Especially tubed ones.

    Yeah. This kinda sucks.
  2. Melvin7822

    Melvin7822 Supporting Member

    May 11, 2004
    Broomfield, CO
    Actually you got what you paid for really. Here's an easy explanation. When ever you increase the amount of drivers (speakers), the apparent loudness goes up, not to mention more drivers allows each driver to run more efficienty since the work is divided up more.

    As far as playing live, the rule of thumb is that a bassist should have double the amount of wattage the guitarists have. It takes a lot more power to push bass frequencies. When I played in a band with one guitarist, I had an amp that pushed 300 W and I could be heard just fine since the guitarist only was using 100 W.

    So say your guitarists have 200 watts a piece. Well, you'd need 800 watts to compete. If they ran 150 watts a piece, then you'd need 600 watts. I think you get the picture. :)
  3. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    It is also said that you should have at least three times as much, but there are still others who say four times as much, but you get the idea: waaay more.

    BUT: that his cab is capable of delivering more watts shouldnt make it sound louder: its the head that makes it loud. You have the same heads running at 350 Ws, so both of you should only have the same amount of power...
    ... unless:
    - you turned some of the knobs on the head in the wrong directions...
    - or your cab is 8Ohms, so the head is just delivering 1/2-2/3 of its power into the cab. But if your cab is wired for 4Ohm, then it either has to do with #1 or there are some other things liek: a.) his head is capable of more watts than its rating b.) bad wires or c.) you have worse playing technique
  4. in short, he should seem a little bit louder because a couple more speakers will project the sound a bit better.
  5. Playing with inexperienced volume freak guitarists definitely does suck. That's beside the point though. The reason your buddys set-up sounds louder is most likely the addition of the two other 10s into the equation. It could also be (as already stated) that your cab is 8 ohms (is it?) and his has a lower impedence, causing his amplifier to produce more power. There are a lot of other variables as well; EQ settings, type of bass, playing style, strings used, etc...
  6. Scott D

    Scott D

    Apr 21, 2003
    Minneapolis, MN
    You know you could have got that setup, used, for about $800? There's WAY better setups for that price.
  7. rddog


    May 30, 2003
    Park City, UT
    If you are happy with the tone of your gear that is all that matters. If you're not you got jakced... (by whom though?)

    I guess my question is do you like what you have? If so why worry about it? In my experience, someone will always find it better and/or cheaper and tell you about it just to get a reaction. It is up to you to reward them or not. JMO

  8. mike mcd

    mike mcd

    Dec 11, 2002
    I wouldn't say that you got ripped off. Anything you buy used will be discounted, but you never know what you are getting, and there will be no warranty either.

    Sometimes you can find honest people, but a lot of people(here, ebay, local music stores, and everywhere) sell used gear that has suffered abuse that is never disclosed in the sale, and which you would probably not buy if you knew what really happened to it.
  9. Visirale


    Mar 23, 2003
    I got you both beat. For 1100 I got the SVT 350h and an 810. Don't feel bad about your purchase.. it's too late now. Just start saving up for a new head.
  10. about this need for 3 or 4 times the power that your guitarplayer has.
    i have 100w ampeg(valve) against 100w laney(valve) and i get told to turn down the level every now and then. what i´m saying is that you dont have to stare yourself blind on watt readings, you can get it to sound good with small amps.
    i remember having a 150w trace with a 2x 15 and it sounded great but after some year i wanted something bigger and ended up with a 350-h(or 200-th earlier version). the thing is that it didn´t sound any louder so that amp had to leave and i came across a hartke 3500 which was a hole nother thing.
    now i have a 200w swr and the 100w ampeg and for club gigs i wouldn´t need anything bigger(and i play it loud and aggressive).
    what i have experianced is that in small band situations and bad rehearsalplaces you will have to eq alot to get a decent sound and maybe sometimes towards a sound that you normaly wouldn´t have.
    finally johnny keep the setup and try to get the best out of it or save up for another 4x10 or a 2x10?
  11. lo-freq

    lo-freq aka UFO

    Jan 19, 2003
    DFW, Texas
    The 3x power as your guitarist(s) (or 4x power) rule of thumb applies to SS bass amps (mostly relative to tube guitarist's amps).
    The efficiency of the cab(s) used can also have a big impact as well as your EQ'ing.
  12. It seems to me like you are totally dissatisfied with your setup, so sell it and start saving for a new one!