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SM-500 - Powerful enough?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Im a sock, Feb 6, 2003.

  1. Im a sock

    Im a sock

    Dec 23, 2002
    Central MA
    Right now I'm playing through an SWR SM-500 and a Goliath III. I need some more volume and low end and I was thinking about buying a Son of Bertha cab. I know the sm-500 puts 250 watts per side at 4 ohms in stereo mode, but is this enough power to be loud and deep enough to cut through a metal band? Any comments would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
  2. secretdonkey


    Oct 9, 2002
    Austin, TX
    SOB is an 8 ohm cab, IIRC.

    If your Goliath is an 8 ohm model, you could add the SOB in bridged mono mode, and get the big kick in the pants you're looking for.

    If your Goliath is a 4 ohm, you might be best off just sticking with it and running bridged mono from the SM-500. Adding an 8 ohm cab to the equation forces you to run in stereo mode and leaves you in a less-than-optimal situation.

    I would definitely avoid loading either of the stereo channels at 8 ohms - I don't know how many watts that equates to on this amp, but I'm pretty sure it's not much juice :(

    If your Goliath is 8 ohms, then I'd say you're in luck. Get the SOB and run bridged mono. If it's still not loud enough, then upgrade the amp - assuming you stay in the SWR family, you've got a cab combo that gives you 4 ohms - the optimum load for all of SWR's higher powered amps.

    Hope that helps! :)
  3. Is your GIII an 8-ohm or 4-ohm? (my understanding is they make a new 4-ohm GIII)

    Are you running the SM500 in bridge mode?

    Bridge/Mono Mode
    500 Watts @ 4 Ohms
    400 Watts @ 8 Ohms
    250 Watts @ 16 Ohms
    (minimum load = 4 Ohms)

    Stereo Mode (per side)
    300 watts @ 2 Ohms
    250 watts @ 4 Ohms
    150 watts @ 8 Ohms
    (minimum load = 2 Ohms)

    If your cab is 8 ohm and you're running only one side of the amp (not bridged) it's easy to see there's a significant difference in output.

    Other folks here will have advice on the addition of an extra cabinet.... fellas??
  4. Hey, I myself am looking at either a SOB or a Big Ben 1x18 to go along with a Goliath III (I have a thread on it in here somewhere). Anyway, I am playing the SM-900 and I'm sure it would work for you. You definately wouldn't be running the cabs as hard as they could be. You may want to think about how much more volume you really need. The SOB will definately provide a bit more lown end and volume. I would probably go for it if I was in your shoes, maybe try bridging the amp and then running the cabs inline. That will give you a 4 ohm load and maybe some more volume. If not, you got your Goliath and your SOB. No one says you can't eventually sell the SM-500 and go for a SM-900 (or a 750x or something) if you still need more headroom and volume (I got my SM-900 as a floor demo, when they revamped the SWR lineup so deals can be found). Hope that helps.
  5. secretdonkey


    Oct 9, 2002
    Austin, TX
    150 watts at 8 ohms?!? 'Tain't much juice at'all :eek: Bimp to the rescue with the real data. :)
  6. Im a sock

    Im a sock

    Dec 23, 2002
    Central MA
    my GIII is an 8 ohm version.

    so it looks like the best option here is to get the SOB and run it inline in bridged mode. thanks for the help everyone. I love this website.