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SWR Amps

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by bassmanbucko, Jul 14, 2004.

  1. What kind of reputation do SWR amps have? I have an idea of what rig I want from them, but I don't want to get it if it's total crap.
  2. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    SWR has a great reputation - i still use an electric blue head
    they're not as in vouge as they were 10 years ago because a lot of other boutique manufacturers have come along
    SWR started biulding just amps and had eden make their cabinets, but the 2 split ways after a while
    In general i would avoid the workingman's series of cabinets as they really dont seem to be anywhere as good as the professional series - the workingman's amps are ok, but i'd stick to the pro series as well
    (one exception would be the workingman's 12 and workingman's 15 combos which are excellent if you want a small combo)
    I've also heard that the stuff built before steve rabe left the company is more reliable, but i can't confirm or deny that rumor
    the only other input is i'm not sold on their Mo' series of heads - it seems like they tried to cram too much stuff into one package - i'd much rather have an sm-900 with a couple of goliath cabinets :D
  3. That's pretty much the rig I was looking at :) thanx!
  4. T. Alan Smith

    T. Alan Smith Guest

    Sep 9, 2001
    SWR has it's own sound. Only your ears can tell you if it's right for you.
    There are SO many great mfgs. to choose from these days- Ampeg, Eden, etc...
    I own a post Steve Rabe rig, and have had no problems. I admit tho- I don't gig very heavily anymore. But then again, if I were gigging heavily, I wouldn't be bringing a boutiqe rig to the places around here. I'd have stuck with my GK(head) & Peavey(cab) setup.
  5. Joe Boom

    Joe Boom

    Jun 25, 2004
    I agree with TAS. If you like the SWR sound, you will like the SWR. To the best of my knowledge, SWRs are durable. Beyond that, everything is subjective.
  6. bassmike1


    Apr 9, 2004
    Was in a progressive country showband that had financing. Everything from lighting/pa/everyone's backline and instruments. Yes it was too good to be true since the bandleaders didn't know a thing about booking. Yes-DOH.
    They told me to go out and pick my "dream rig". I'd already put a Modulus Quantum5 on layaway. Filled the rig out with powered Bagend top and bottom. Rack/mounted SM900/ wireless/compressor/BBE/tuner...theshiznaz. Dunno whether it was the SM or the Bagends, but I was very unimpressed with what I saw as an overated SM900. I now run two Trace Elliot stacks and couldn't be happier. Everyone is blown away by the tone/warmth/power/visions of God. You just have to spend thousands of dollars a pop and MAKE SURE TO PLAY IT OUT LIVE before deciding. Noreally-It's kinda like that since many retailers don't typically rent out hi-end/powered rigs to let you run em thru the paces. Good luck hehe
  7. Ian Perge

    Ian Perge Supporting Member

    May 11, 2001
    Evansville, Indiana
    I'm of the opposite viewpoint - with my Mini Mo', I have the classic SWR preamp sound, all the efx's I used before now integrated into one solid package with a built-like-a-brick s'house footswitch, and they've given me the option to use the power amp of my choosing. On the other hand, give me an SM-900, and while I love the tone, it'll take me 3 weeks just to find it - just too many tone-shaping options for my personal taste. Although we're both on the same wavelength on Goliath's, so there's some overlap on our feelings. :D

    bassmanbucko - you might want to do a search on SWR gear in general, but I'd take the post-Fender buyout complaints with a grain of salt. It did take a bit of time to incorporate the company's structures which led to some customer issues regarding parts and such - SWR themselves admit that. But those issues have been addressed and several people have reported much improved customer service. I had to special-order my Mini Mo', and the process went as smooth as can be.

    What kind of rig exactly are you looking to build?
  8. bassturtle


    Apr 9, 2004

    I like 'em. I've owned several and still say that the Goliath 4x10 is one of the best sounding cabs ever made. The pro series stuff is tough as nails. I never had a problem with any of them going down or giving me any problems. Rain or shine they always worked.

    Like the other posters have said, you've gotta use your ears to decide if they are right for you. But as far as quality goes they've got my vote.
  9. Mo' bass

    Mo' bass

    May 4, 2000
    I have an SWR Mo' Bass and I'm very happy with it. I agree, the construction of the knobs isn't all that, but I never had any problems with it (bought new in 2000). Regular gigging, once a week sometimes more often.

    I use it with 2 Gol Jr's and 1 SOB. The power amp section of the Mo' Bass is more than enough to drive these cabinets. I don't use the effects all that much, only for a couple of songs on a gig.

    I briefly had the floorpedal too but that broke down on me and so did the replacement... RMA and money back.
  10. Beammeup


    Oct 7, 2002
    When I was to buy my latest Rig, I tried a SWR SM-400.

    It really disappointed me. I can't really describe what is was, but I was looking for a Rock N' Roll Sound and it wasn't there.

    Ended up buying EBS Fafner TD-600 with a 6x10" BigSize Cab.

    My advice: When buying, try as many desired setups/rigs as possible. Then narrow it in.

    Always trust your instinct, but don't hessitate to ask dealers or clever TB'ers :eek:

    I hope you find your rig, no mather brand or price!
  11. Edwcdc

    Edwcdc I call shotgun!

    Jul 21, 2003
    Columbia MD USA
    I use a 750 into a workingmans 8x10. I use to use a workingmans 4004 amp but it has become my backup. The 8x10 cab is not too bad. I wouldn't mind trying out a set up like Mo'Bass is using with the 2/ 2x10 cabs and the 1x15. I bet that's a great combination and not too hard on the back. My 8x10 cab is easier to transport than most 4x10 cabs.
  12. I have the same cabs as Mo' bass...2 Gol Jrs and 1 SOB. I'm using a Workingman's 8004 head with these cabs. Don't worry about SWR's reputation, they're durable, reliable gear. Whether they fit your needs or not is up to you to decide.
  13. Mo' bass

    Mo' bass

    May 4, 2000
    I got lucky because I honestly didn't do much brand research went I went amp shopping. I knew I needed a new one (ahum, now I know it's called GAS:) ) Anyways, I had in my head that I wanted an SWR, it was only a question of which one. As the Mo was just released in the USA and not even available at that time in the Netherlands I couldn't listen to it, but it looked cool. I briefly played through an SWR 350 at the local shop, decided I liked the sound and ordered the Mo. I love it but it could easily have gone the other way. If you can, compare amps from different brands side by side.

    Oh and the cab setup me and Nickelseye have is very portable and modular. Thats the reason I bought 2 2x10 instead of 1 4x10.
  14. Edwcdc

    Edwcdc I call shotgun!

    Jul 21, 2003
    Columbia MD USA

    OK here's the deal. You have to tell my wife that I need this set up. Tell her how good it sounds and throw in stuff about my bad back. Really sell her on the idea. I can't do this alone. :D
  15. T. Alan Smith

    T. Alan Smith Guest

    Sep 9, 2001
    That's why I went with the 350 head. It sounded great with everything flat. So EQing was an option and not a necessity. :cool:
    I want gear that has great sound...not lots of options. My 350 does one thing...really well.
  16. Mo' bass

    Mo' bass

    May 4, 2000
    "Dear Misses Edwcdc. Your husband :bassist: is in serious need of a modular SWR cabinet setup. It will be much better for his back and it will sound so good that he will get a lot of compliments on his sound. :cool: That will make him very happy. :hyper: Which in the long run is also good for you. So misses Edwcdc, it is in your own best intrest to make sure your husband get's his new SWR speakers as soon as possible!"

  17. Edwcdc

    Edwcdc I call shotgun!

    Jul 21, 2003
    Columbia MD USA

    You're the best. Keep your fingers crossed!
  18. Mo' bass

    Mo' bass

    May 4, 2000
    So, did it work? :hyper:

    Anyways, I probably should start a new thread about this, but :help:

    Last saturday I had an outdoor gig and decided to bring the whole setup. I started experimenting a litte with different connections and I discovered that my Mo'Bass sounds much **MUCH** better in bridge mode than in stereo mode. I was subbing for another bass player and the guitar dude had already commented on the looks of the Mo' but hadn't said anything about the sound. About 1 sec after I connected only the 2x10's to the mono output and set the switch to mono he suddenly said it sounded very good.

    I emailed SWR and the tech dude wrote back that it there was more clarity and headroom in bridge mode but I think that the difference in sound quality is way too much.

    Way back when I first gigged with the Mo' I already noticed that my sound was much clearer when I only used the 2 2x10. I attributed that to muddiness from the 1x15. Now I'm not sure about that.

    Anybody here who knows the effects on sound quality between stereo and bridged?

    (ps, I know a lot of people dissed the Mo's clean tone... maybe they only heard it in stereo mode)
  19. I have noticed that on seperate different occasions with my SM900. Just the left side running was ok, but bridged it came alive. The band didn't notice any change in volume but commented on the "feeling" of the bass. Maybe it's the headroom, or that anything the preamp throws into the poweramp, it just throws into the speakers without flinching (20 to 20k).

    I love my set up, but I have heard rock guys say they got barried in a full band setting. My guitar players have 1X12 combos so I can out volume them if I can't fit into the sonic sound space.

  20. Edwcdc

    Edwcdc I call shotgun!

    Jul 21, 2003
    Columbia MD USA
    I love wattage. :D