SWR Amps and why they rock

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Boom762, Dec 27, 2014.

  1. Boom762

    Boom762 I AM the one who Booms! Supporting Member

    Oct 19, 2013
    Alpine, TX
    I recently bought a collection of bass gear off of a college student. He had an SWR LA15 combo with it all and it is the best sounding amp I've ever owned (Beating out a Peavey Max 700, Rumble 350, and and random cabinets).

    My question is, what exactly is inside this tiny little amp that my ears are loving? The Speakers, the amplifier, or both together?

    I'd like to start looking for another SWR product but would like to know if Im wanting a cabinet or a head.
  2. Kitsapbass

    Kitsapbass What key is this?

    May 26, 2005
    Bremerton, WA
    Well, used is pretty much your only option at this point. Fender bought SWR, and it folded I believe in 2013...but I've got a few, I still like them. To me it's the preamp, but the speakers are pretty gosh darn good too...
  3. friendlybass

    friendlybass Guest

    Jul 19, 2012
    Ive got a head and cabs and they're all good, especially the pre fender stuff. Steve Rabe really was a genius when it came to bass gear.
    blindrabbit and The Nameless like this.
  4. They are/were so good that they do/did a huge business and dominate the market.... :woot:
    Iristone likes this.
  5. SteveC


    Nov 12, 2004
    NE ND
    Those old red bass 350's are great amps. Basically indestructible and great tone.
  6. Boom762

    Boom762 I AM the one who Booms! Supporting Member

    Oct 19, 2013
    Alpine, TX
    In my research this morning I've discovered SWR made 1x18 cabinet called Big Ben. Man I wish I could hear one of those.
    friendlybass likes this.
  7. SteveC


    Nov 12, 2004
    NE ND
    Never had a Big Ben. I did have a 210, 410 and Triad. All great cabs. Had a Grand Prix preamp, a 350, a 750 and working man 10 and 12 Combos. Went to Eden and then Genz Benz, but I used SWR for a long time and they are great amps and cabs.
  8. iriegnome

    iriegnome Bassstar style Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2001
    Kenosha, WI 53140
    Been using SWR for 25+ years. Best bass amp hands down IMHO
    Zenbassie, Boom762 and The Nameless like this.
  9. 10cc

    10cc Inactive

    Oct 28, 2013
    I've owned:
    Workingman 2004
    Workingman 4004
    Power 750 slave
    4 Working Pro 700's
    LA 12
    Strawberry Blonde
    2 410's Goliath
    2 15's
    2 18's Big Ben
    2 810 MegOlathe

    Also played through SWR Mobass and SM900 amps.
    I really like SWR gear, it sounds great and their cabinets were awesome.
    Actually played a show once or twice with the 2 15's, 2 18's and the 2 810's all hooked up to the 4 700's. It was MASSIVE!
    GlassToMouth and iriegnome like this.
  10. marmadaddy


    Oct 17, 2005
    Rochester, NY
    Still using my SM400 and Goliath 410 (sn 0038) for rehearsals. Sounds incredible after around 25 years.
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  11. Bassitudes

    Bassitudes Guest

    Dec 16, 2014
    Toronto, Ontario
    there is some crossover between eden and swr in designs in the past, am i right? something like certain people working for both companies, or releasing through the other company, maybe early in their career? also i heard some of the swr ideas are integrated into the new fender rumble series.
  12. Kitsapbass

    Kitsapbass What key is this?

    May 26, 2005
    Bremerton, WA
    IIRC, the first Goliath cabinets (4x10, 2x10) were David Eden designed. However, I have been wrong before (and probably will be again)...
    Bassitudes likes this.
  13. shawshank72


    Mar 22, 2009
    I rocked a SWR 4004
    And i rocked a SWR 8004
    That 8004 was a beast!!!!
  14. diamondsplit

    diamondsplit Guest

    Jan 13, 2012
    You think SWRs Rock Try an AMP 420 That Rocks Steve Rabb correct me if i am spelling his name wrong he designed Acoustic 360 and developed 450's on yp and 81 went on his own and designed and built the AMP he only made so mant between 84 and 89 and he designed the proto for Jaco and Larry Hartke Designed Aluminum cone speaker so they both came up 2 4X10 and 420 watt AMP. Jaco loved his 360/361 full stack never try another amp. They Develped what now is one of the best cabinets for the Money and the AMP is now Thunder Funk which is one of the best on the market. If you can find an AMP 420 between 300 and 600 get it. I like SWRs I never tried the SM models just 750x it sounds nice but this is king. I'am not sure what year mine is but it has such range for head that old yo can get any sound with it and its super loud I have 4X10 Hartke Xl its either an 89 or 90 I think its the first the made them with the AMP 420 and an Eden 1X18 it kicks
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2014
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  15. diamondsplit

    diamondsplit Guest

    Jan 13, 2012
    i had the Big Ben and i have the Eden i had then at the same time I like the Eden but the best 18 inch I played through was a Carvin and you get them cheap. I bet yo the Peavey 18/2x!0 w black widows rocks
  16. SWR was the first good amp I ever owned. Got an 89 RedHead. An still use it. I have used nearly every product ever designed by this company. And in nearly every instance, it is the piece of amplification I wish I still had. I miss my SM900, Grand Prix/Stereo 800, etc. The Bigfoot 212 and Henry the 8x8 are two I really lament over. The Big Ben is extraordinary, but you best have a room big enuff. Heh. I still use an old, SM-400s as my main amp. After 30 years. Stuff lasts forever, sounds great, useable features and easy to use. I doubt I'll ever change.
    blindrabbit likes this.
  17. Dominick C.

    Dominick C. Guest

    Jul 2, 2012
    Austin, Tx
    I don't like mean people or mean comments....
    I have also owned a ton of SWR gear. IMHO the best sounding amp they ever made was the BabyBlue II. The two by 8 with the fluid cone 5" to be exact. I had one with a BB monitor. Best Micro rig ever. Well small anyway, not especially lite.

    Two big bens and a SVT will force the air from your lungs. One of my favorite rigs ever. Weights about 250#

    image.jpg image.jpg
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2014
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  18. iriegnome

    iriegnome Bassstar style Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2001
    Kenosha, WI 53140
    ok.. let me see here..
    SS-180 (5 years)
    SM-400 (6 years)
    Bass 350 (1 year)
    Bass 750 (13 years)
    Bass Monitor (8 years)
    LA15, Strawberry Blonde, Redhead (350w version)
    Goliath, Goliath Jr, Triad, Son of Bertha, Big Ben

    I still have all the amps except the SM400. I still own and use them all. All speaker cabs are gone except
    the Bass Monitor (Which I love) and the Triad (Up for sale on the board)..
    Check out the SWR Fan Club for lots more info and Fans of the gear.
    slade and The Nameless like this.
  19. Trombassix

    Trombassix Guest

    Nov 14, 2013
    Was all set to buy an SWR Headlite, but Fender decided to buy SWR and bury the brand. Now I have a GK Fusion 800. If only there was a follow-up to the Headlite available with the power of the Fusion 800.
  20. tobias3469

    tobias3469 Suspended Supporting Member

    Sep 28, 2013
    West Los Angeles
    They rock because they let you know exactly what you and your bass sound like.
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