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Small, light, powerful amplifiers with great sound for the double bass?

Discussion in 'Amps, Mics & Pickups [DB]' started by Jakemo, Nov 21, 2019.

  1. Jakemo


    Feb 22, 2019
    Does anyone have experience with the small and inexpensive Phil Woods models (hope I got the name right) in comparison with the Acoustic Image Double Shot $599 model? I need an amp with enough power to play with a big band, and as good a sound as one can get at this price. Currently lugging around the trusty old Gallien Kruger...it's pretty heavy. Thanks.
  2. BassChuck

    BassChuck Supporting Member

    Nov 15, 2005
    You probably mean Phil Jones.
    I don't play DB, but I use an Acoustic Image Claris and I love it. It's light weight and has more than enough power for the big bands I play with. I use a MarkBass and a 2x10 cab when I need that EB sound, and the Acoustic Image with a Phil Jones C4 cab for a more transparent sound.
    I would guess the Phil Jones amps will give you what you want. You can count on Phil's stuff to be extremely well designed and well built.
    thmsjordan and G Aichele like this.
  3. Jakemo


    Feb 22, 2019
  4. Jakemo


    Feb 22, 2019
    BassChuck thanks! One of the reasons I've been asking is that my local store has Phil Jones equipment, but the salesman told me that their amps, though light and powerful, are made for electric basses , (active, not passive, like a double bass.) I figure that there may be other factors involved vis avi the DB. String stores, like Upton Bass are recommending the Acoustic Image. I guess I have to get back to the store and test the Phil Jones. Are there any DB players with opinions on Phil Jones vs. Acoustic Image?
  5. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    This belongs in the amps section of the upright bass side of TB, not accessories on the electric bass side.
  6. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY

    I have used PJB combos as my main gigging amps for nearly 10 years now, and have an Acoustic image head as my backup. Both are excellent for the double bass.
  7. Quilter Bass Block. Small, light, works great, in same price range.
    Zbysek likes this.
  8. mooseonbass

    mooseonbass Supporting Member

    Jun 24, 2011
    Phil Jones amps work great for DB. I have 4 and they all sound amazing. They are versatile and put out a lot of sound for the small speaker area.
    Chris Fitzgerald likes this.
  9. Jakemo


    Feb 22, 2019
    Sorry, I've been away from TalkBass for sometime ...hope to get organized better. Thanks
  10. rknea

    rknea Supporting Member

    Jan 16, 2007
    Boise, ID
    I use an Acoustic Image Ten2 for all my bass needs. It works great in the big band I'm in and equally outstanding in our 5pc jazz combo. The lifetime warranty doesn't hurt either although I've never had to use it!
    NG51, BAE and Jakemo like this.
  11. lurk


    Dec 2, 2009
    I use a tcBam200 into an Upshot. I also use a Tonedexter. Leaving the Dex aside, it's a fairly cheap set up that fits in a bookbag and gives me the volume I need with a great sound. There's always a weight/volume balance each bassist needs to find and it's a personal choice. P Jones stuff is great but heavier and more expensive than my rig. For really tiny gigs I use a PJ double 4 which is absolutely amazing for what it is.
  12. nogbert


    Jul 18, 2010
    Denver, CO
    its worth pointing out that the acoustic image doubleshot is a cabinet only. you'll need a head to power it. the doubleshot and acoustic image clarus together costs ~$1100.
    bobsax likes this.
  13. Jakemo


    Feb 22, 2019
    Do you hear a good acoustic sound with the PJ 4, or is (just) amazingly strong?
  14. Jakemo


    Feb 22, 2019
  15. Jakemo


    Feb 22, 2019
    I know the PJ 4 is very strong but does it give a really nice acoustic sound to the double bass?
  16. Jakemo


    Feb 22, 2019
  17. Jakemo


    Feb 22, 2019
    Yes that was very important to point out. Thanks a lot.
  18. dhergert

    dhergert Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 17, 2018
    Blue Zone, California
    Is this a Small Big Band (aka SBB; DB, drums, e-guitar, bone, horn, clarinet, sax) or a full out Big Band??? Big difference...

    The DB player (Jeff, on an Eminence) for Disneyland's "Royal Street Bachelors" SBB plays both on-stage and at various "roving" locations. For the roving locations he uses a Roland Micro Cube Bass RX, and it really sounds quite good, with excellent power and outside penetration for a 20-30 person standing audience.

    I use one of these also, but it's for the primarily acoustic (mic'ed) string bands that I play with. I have an on-board pre-amp on my Alcoa, but before I got the pre I used the Roland straight from my piezo, and except for not having as much headroom, it sounded great. For me the other big advantages of this little combo amp is that it is small (fits in a day-pack), very light (15 lbs) and it can run for 11 (I usually get about 20) hours on 6AA batteries. Plus I just went wireless with my DB, so now I'm totally wireless with the whole amp system. It's great, just used it for a gig yesterday and was heard very well for a 100 person indoor luncheon audience.

    The trick with any small amp is get it up off the ground so it isn't playing into people's feet and legs. I usually put my Roland on a chair or stool, or preferably something that raises it up to about waist height.
  19. nogbert


    Jul 18, 2010
    Denver, CO
    from my experience the PJB cabinets and combos are known for their clear tone, not for their overwhelming power/volume. the phil jones double four he was talking about is a baby combo amp that might work for small jazz combo playing but would not be enough for a big band imo. i have the PJ double four and it's surprisingly loud for its size but i would not call it a loud/powerful amp. It only runs at 75W after all
    Wasnex likes this.

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