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Discussion in 'Amps, Mics & Pickups [DB]' started by Nick Ioannucci, Mar 2, 2006.

  1. hello all, over the summer i have the opportunity to buy a new amp!! my bro is going away on an expensive trip, and when i did the same he recieved a 1200 dollar computer. so y budget is about 1000 dollars. I have been looking at SWR cabs heads and combos, and am looking at two things. I looked at the California Blonde, which seems to be the amp of choice for alot of upright players, as well as the working pro 2x10 with a matching SWR head. does anyone have any experience with the 2x10? i know the Blonde is designed for accoustic instruments, but i also play bass guitar, and want something that will be suitable for both. both have more than enough power for DB, and from what i have heard from friends is that SWR's amps are incredibly loud. Any input would be nice, as well as experience, opinions, etc.
    Thanks Alot!
  2. Ric Vice

    Ric Vice Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2005
    Olivette, Missouri
    When MarkBass gets a distributor in the United States, that might be something to seriously consider. There is a very nice thread about their products that has been very favorable.

    Ric Vice
  3. ok thanks for that, but im specifically looking for info on the SWR stuff.
  4. TroyK

    TroyK Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2003
    Seattle, WA
    I don't know anyone who plays with the WM 2x10. I do know people who gig with both the WM10 and WM12. I've seen people play with the 15, but generally speaking 15" speakers are not considered the best for double bass. The Cali Blonde is a good double bass amp and there is one for sale in the classifieds now. I've read that people have played EBG through them, but would assume that they are not the best for that. You may also look for a deal on a used Red Head 2x10 combo amp. There is currently one at Bass Northwest (google it).

    None of these, with the possible exception of the Cali Blonde are going to be optimal for DB, but it depends a lot on your needs.

    Good luck,

  5. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    Isn't YO YO JURAS playing a Cali Blonde in this pic? Maybe you could ask him how he likes it.

    Attached Files:

  6. TroyK

    TroyK Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2003
    Seattle, WA
    I'm not sure, but that looks a bit like a Strawberry Blonde. Also supposed to be a nice little amp, but very low volume.
  7. mchildree

    mchildree Supporting Member

    Sep 4, 2000
    I have a Cali Blonde, and it sounds great for upright. Sounds just fine for electric bass as well. It's dual-channel so you can even use it as a doubling amp. It's essentially a WM12 with an extra channel and reverb. Looks a lot cooler, too!
  8. TroyK

    TroyK Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2003
    Seattle, WA
    Have you ever used the or (a) powered extension with it?

    I'm still tempted to buy yours, by the way. I want a wizzy, but my pocketbook is puckering up....but I really want one.
  9. mchildree

    mchildree Supporting Member

    Sep 4, 2000
    No, I never used an extension cab...never needed to. By the way, the reason I'm selling mine is that I have a Wizzy on the way, to use with my IAMP800. If I didn't really have a need to combine my electric and upright rigs, the Cali Blonde would do just fine for me.
  10. cool. that was the main thing, was making sure i could play both of my instruments on one amp. Ill have to keep looking arond, seeing as i have a while before i am actually getting an amp. The california blonde is a definite contender. Does anyone have any experience with the 2x10? or does anyone one know for certain that it wouldnt sound very good with upright?
  11. TroyK

    TroyK Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2003
    Seattle, WA
    "Good" is relative. I'm sure it would it would sound similar to the 1x10 and the WM12, which are "fine". I actually prefer the sound of the WM10, but it's just to wimpy on volume for most things with electric. The 12 has more headroom and I noticed that there is a new model, with upped wattage and tilk back cab. Very tempting.

    2x10 cabinets in general have a sound characteristic that I happen to like, but it's an opinion. The non-acoustic series SWRs (or anything) will not be ideal for DB. You'll need to use a pre amp and the sound will be shaped in a way intended for electric. But, what are you playing? Do you play in a Hancock funk band? Do you want to sound like Ron Carter or Sam Jones?

    "Good with upright" is a broad description. The people who use gut strings don't think that Spirocores sound "good with upright" and so on. It depends on what you want.

    What most people look for in DB amplifacation is transparency. The ubiquitous "my bass only louder", which drives them to acoustic amps like the Cali Blone or DB specific amps. Generally these are not the same ones that work for playing in a punk band or a C&W band with a Warwick Thumb, at least not until you've got a few grand into your rig. But that's a generalization. Not everyone puts that much into their amps and many people are totally happy with the sounds they get out of their BG amps.

    You still haven't really described what you play, where you play, how much power you need, etc. so it's hard to say. Maybe check out the GK amps. They are not transparent, but seem to be a brand that both DB players and EBG players use.
  12. i think im gonna go fro the cali blonde. i play jazz, big band, and on ocasion fusion/rock. it needs to be loud enough to be heard. it seems that the cali clonde is like by eb players as wells as db players(after searching both forums) so im gonna go with that probably. also, my school has a hartke 2200 cab with the 550 head, which i think sounds fine with my upright and electric, the reason i was looking at the 2x10 was because 2x10 seem to be punchier/more responsive than single speaker cabs IMO. idk im just looking for a good all around set up for both instruments, that is loud enough to be heard over some brass, or a guitar and a drummer
  13. larry


    Apr 11, 2004
    Big fan of SWR gear for DB here.

    I used to use a Baby Blue. I still have the head but I sold the cabinet. Now I usually use an SM900 head but with a Bergantino cab. SWR heads sound warm and full to me. I tried an AI Focus, and found it thin in comparison. SWR heads use a tube in the preamp - I think that is a big factor.

    SWR cabinets sound good, but there are better options out there, IMO. Bergantino, EA and others give you tighter sound and more headroom in a lighter box.
  14. Standalone


    Jan 17, 2005
    New Haven
    i've been using the WM 12 since November or so in rehearsal w/ a quintet doing bossa and general fakebook stuff. It's a good, cheap place to start at $299. The voicing of the mids, though, leaves a lot to be desired. Granted, I'm using an old fishman piezo w/ the older model belt clip pre. The weaknesses of my pickup are exaggerated by the amp, but even at that, I can live with it.

    However, I have a big eden combo (the metro) that I can use for bigger/serious gigs, so I'm not worried about the limitations af the WM12. You're looking for one amp that'll do it for your DB and BG, and I don't think you'll be happy w/ an SWR as your only amp for DB unless you can afford the Baby Baby Blue. The California Blonde might do it for the DB, but then you'd have a fairly uninteresting tone w/ your BG.
  15. Nick,
    I have SWR 2x10 for BG, and 1x12 GK 150E combo for DB, which working with SWR box when internal speaker (on GK combo) is off.
  16. jtlownds


    Oct 3, 2004
    LaBelle, FL
    I have been using the California Blonde for 8 or 9 years. Works very well for URB. You can also use the dual channels for blending pickup & mike. It also works very well with the slab. I have a couple of Carvin Pro-Bass amps, and the Blonde will blow them out of the water. I primarily use the AI Contra now, mostly because I'm getting older than dirt and I think that the Blonde is gaining weight.
  17. snowdan


    Feb 27, 2006
    why don't you look for something like that: some nice amp, a WM 1x10 cab for upright, and some nice extension cab when you play BG.

    i have today received my WM 10 and i love it. even for BG at moderate volume.

    the new workingpro 10 with another 1x10 cab could also be an option.
  18. thats actually not a bad idea, but now im also looking at an eden 2x8 and an ampeg 2x8, theyre all options to consider.
  19. shwashwa


    Aug 30, 2003
    ok, so i have an older swr 2X10 cab that i use for gigs and an acoustic image extension cab that i use for practice around the house. i use my walter woods with both. i'm starting to think i like the "flat response" characteristics of the AI. i think i may actually hear a difference between the cab. 3 questions: is the SWR really "tuned" for electric bass? how much affect could that actually have on my sound? and, i like the AI, but its not enough for some of my louder gigs, and i'm not crazy about the downfiring speaker. would a razer's edge, epiffini or bergantino or EA sound that much different when using the same bass and head?
  20. Standalone


    Jan 17, 2005
    New Haven

    My db has old fishman clip-on piezos, and I do think that my WM12 is definitely more "voiced" for BG. I think SWR originally built its reputation on its 'modern' scooped tone early on. It could be psychological, but I think I hear it in my WM12, even though it is certainly a long way from the SWRs of old. I'mthinking more ofthe amp than the 'tuning' of the integrated cab, tho.

    I have not really had the chance to put my db through my 600 watt Eden Metro (have 210xlt ext cab, too) but I'm sure that the eden will get a flatter response, even with its honky horn.

    That said, a different pickup setup on my bass will probably make me happier with the WM12. At $20 bucks more street than the WM10, i reccommend the 12. Good Luck :)