should I buy a bigger amp?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by mwlaurenson, Feb 5, 2001.

  1. mwlaurenson

    mwlaurenson Guest

    Feb 5, 2001
    I am currently using a 65w amp with an active bass at my band practices.I have to turn it up full to be loud enough but then the sound isn't clear.There is no line out on the amp other than the headphones socket. I am wondering about miking it through the P.A. or using a direct box with an output going to both the amp and P.A.
    Our P.A. is 150w with one microphone for vocals going through it.

    My band haven't started playing gigs yet and when we do another amp will usually be available so I don't really want to buy a big amp just yet.

    Which is the best solution?

    [Edited by mwlaurenson on 02-05-2001 at 05:29 PM]
  2. rllefebv


    Oct 17, 2000
    Newberg, Oregon
    65W is a pretty minimal rating for a bass amp. This would be fine for practicing in your room, playing coffee-houses with a coupla acoustic guitar players and a bongo player, or something along those lines. Without more information in your profile, it's kind of hard to give advice. Depending on the band, running through the PA may be an option. Good rule of thumb...if you're diming the volume knob and not hearing yourself, time for a more powerful amp!

  3. VictorLeMonteWooten


    Dec 6, 2000
    maybe you could turn everyone down a bit. Play some nice, smooth jazz. Well, if your not jaco pastorius (even though he had a more powerful amp), i suggest a 200-275 watt amp no more, no less (unless it is a vintage tube amp, then you need a lot of money for repairs and $80 for tubes when they burn).
  4. My rule of thumb is, turn the volume past halfway and you need a bigger amp.....Then again most guitar players I know play as loyd as possible, I think that way the wrong notes are not as apparent....
  5. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
  6. Oysterman


    Mar 30, 2000
    Munji, what took you so long? ;)
  7. Good attitude, no questions asked.....Bigger the better....Just one question I have, When you see these huge walls of speakers behind some bands, and you also see a PA system the size of a skyscraper, isn't that kind of redundant? I love big stacks and think it looks really cool, but is it really necessary? After all they have in ear monitors, so they hear the PA anyway......
  8. Having worked in the sound field for a few years now I can let you in a little secret that alot of people don't know. Bands put stacks of speakers on stage to look cool, not to actually use, if they turned all of them on it would cause horrible phasing problems out front. The trick is to look for the cab that is miked, that's the one that's on. In the 80's bands like Motley Crue and Poison were going so far as to have mock cabinets made, empty boxes with speaker grills on them. The audience was still going "WOW look at that!!" and the roadies weren't breaking their backs, and I have still seen this done even today.
  9. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    To tag on to chaoslord, they're affectionately known as "dummy cabs." Yes, I plead guilty, too, about 20 years ago. Videos of Iron Maiden are another good example. A dozen Marshall stacks for one instrument?.....Not in this lifetime.
  10. Is the GK 400RB III (240w RMS) a decent head for funk? I mean in a trio setting, rehersal and resaurants and clubs?

    It's either that, a 700RB, or an Ampeg B2R. They all have lines out (I am assuming XLR balanced line out means to go to the PA system). But how loud will they be just for the band?
  11. NJXT


    Jan 9, 2001
    Lyon, FRANCE
    My 2 cents : if you have a "typical" drummer, go at least a 200+ watts amp. Going throuhg the PA might not be the good solution. It can be loud enough for singing but not for bass (low frequencies requier power).
  12. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts

    The difference between the 700RB at 350 watts and the 400RB at 240 watts is only 1.6 dB. In general I'd go for the higher powered amp but if the price is a significant barreier, the volume differential between the two is not significant.

    Keep in mind when you say "funk" if you like that scooped mids tone you'll need a lot more power to be heard than if you keep your mids flatter.

  13. Well, I think I've given up on GK because a lot of the reviews say they aren't reliable, and I want something reliable, so Ampeg B2R is looking like the one. And it's more watts than the 400RBIII
  14. Gabu


    Jan 2, 2001
    Woodland Hills, CA
    Generally Carvins are pretty cheap... You can get a 600 watt Carvin combo with a 2x10 speaker config for less than $800 new.

    You will be able to turn it up just a little, be loud enough and stay clean.

    Also, it's got a angled back so if when you are playing big rooms later you can go through the house PA and use this amp as a monitor.

    Or you can buy my amp so that I can get that Carvin. :)

    I have also seen some used Carvin stuff pretty cheap... In the local Recycler there is (or was don't know if it is sold) a Carvin 500w bass head with a 4x10 cab for $400.
  15. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    g - tagging on to what you said, the recent BP review of the 210 mentioned they like it standing on its end, (the speakers vertical), in live situations as far as maximizing what the audience gets.

    Having had the R1000 head before the R600, I thought I thought the 400 watt difference would make it a suitable practice amp. What was I thinking? That R600 is one mean motor scooter!
  16. virtual.ray


    Oct 25, 2000
    Re Dummy Cabs: I saw Hendrix at the Fillmore East with 6 Sunn 4x12's each for him and Noel,and I can affirm that they were ALL on!
  17. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    virtual- I said TWELVE for EACH instrument.

    Another little razzle dazzle for the volume freaks in the audiece is the "smoke bomb in the dummy cab with a cigarette time fuse trick." That really impresses `em, especially if you have a roadie run out with a fire extinguisher in the middle of the song.
  18. jcadmus


    Apr 2, 2000
    Help me out here folks -- the answer to this question is always "yes," right?

    I mean without even reading the rest of the post, the answer is always "yes," isn't it?

    Thanks. ;)
  19. Never show up for any gig underpowered. Buy as much power as you can get your hands on and then start saving up for more. But really, if you can get 600 - 1000 watts of pure earth shaking power you will be set for a long time. There is nothing worse than playing on stage with some psyco guitar player turned up to eleven, (cause ten is just not enough). You may as well just put your bass back in the case and go get a beer cause you wont be heard. Get a small practice amp but have your power beast ready for the gigs. By the way, just because you have all that power dont mean you have to use it. Remember you also have a volume knob to.