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TC Electronic RH450, RS210, RS212 Review Thread

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Andy Brown, Mar 18, 2009.

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  1. A.L.

    A.L. promusica.it

    Sep 30, 2006
    Treviso - Italy
    Endorsing Artist: Music Man
    Hi...here are some other impression from a test pilot. I play mainly jazz and do session work.

    I got my rig in the middle of a tour and I tested it right away on the road and in studio.

    SOUND & EQ

    I normally use two heads, an old Walter Woods for jazz and a Mesa Boogie Walkabout for pop/rock. I set one of the two 2×10 cabs with my head and the other with the RH450…in a few minutes I could tweek the TC Electronics amp to the voice of the two (very different) heads thanks to the programmable EQ, memories and tube emulation circuit.

    I used it alone for small gigs and DI+Mic in bigger venues as you can see here:


    The head is really easy to use, light and compact, with a fantastic design. The cabs are small, compact and loud, cool design too. The finish is very cool but it gets scratched easyly. The rear ported big reflex port needs to be placed well, far from walls or it will create boomy resonances.


    I used the head with different cabs live (Hartke) and in the studio (Mesa) and it performs with great detail in every situation. DI is very good.

    I used it with a piezo equipped Harvey Citron Bass, Music Man Bongo piezo/magnetic, an old Yamaha TRB 6P and a double bass and you can easly find the sound and the voice you need.


    The foot controller is very usefull to mute and tune and to change the eq memories. With a fretless or a double bass you can also check visually your intonation (when you track a pop ballad with that long notes you’ll make the producer very happy).


    Sound, versatility, dimensions, look. If they must take the head out of me I am gonna buy it 100%.

    I can easily replace my favourite heads, it can travel in my gig bag, ready to be used with different voltages, DI tuner compressor and tube sound ready, stereo aux in, its amazing!


    The AUX IN input goes straight to the Headphone jack…this way I can’t use it live…like:

    1- demo/jam/concert with pre-recorded track in computer or Ipod

    2- save the after-gig party ;-)

    I think that since the sound is cut from the cabs as soon as you insert the phone plug it is not usefull to prevent the aux in signal from going to the power amp section.


    1- cab finish (but I have to see how it develops over time)

    2- another bass input (when you teach is a must…but it comes in handy many times)

    3- a 1×12 8ohm could be very interesting in making a really compact but easly expandable rig.

    4- aux in signal path

    Overall and exiting new product that raises the standard of musical amplification for bass

    I'll keep you posted for more videos or impressions...

  2. Andy Brown

    Andy Brown Commercial User

    Jul 23, 2004
    Rhode Island
    Founder/Owner: Wing Instruments
    Well, after using the amp in multiple practices (with the band and woodshedding) over the past couple of weeks, my initial impressions of the flat EQ were incorrect. I still like rolling off a little lows and mid-lows for some tunes, but for the most part a flat EQ sounds great with all of my basses. The tone is full, it cuts through, and I can actually hear myself (vs. having a single 12 on the floor).

    I'm taking full advantage of the memory settings and the tuner is great to have on all the time, especially with fretless.

    I agree with others that the cab finish is a little harsh and scratches easily especially if you need to place them even gently on concrete or asphalt. It is probably easy to get cab-burn if you're not extra careful.

    Overall, at this early stage, I'm almost convinced that this rig could be a keeper, and I can't wait to get it out to some gigs... which should be coming soon.
  3. Tom7

    Tom7 I'm so bright, my mom called me son! ;-)

    Jan 31, 2000
    Eagle River, Alaska
    Well, that was a very clever thing to do, to use the two cabinets that way to dial in the sound. I must say that I am VERY impressed that you were able to use presets to get the RH450 to model your two amps; that would be highly desirable for me.

    Enjoyed the performances; and the clips were helpful. Thanks.
    Here's another report of how easily this new gear gets scratched. That's too bad. And thanks for the heads up on the clearance from walls.
    It sounded very good from John's recording as well.
    That's a fairly wide sonic range there. All flat wounds?

    The different voltages are a big thing with me too, and this head really seems to have traveling down, both in terms of size and how it adapts to interntational power.

    Wow, if I understand correctly, than that sucks. So you can't play out through the cabinets or DI what you are piping in through the RCA aux in connections? Yeah, that bites.

    Thanks for taking the trouble to let us know, Andrea.
  4. Tom7

    Tom7 I'm so bright, my mom called me son! ;-)

    Jan 31, 2000
    Eagle River, Alaska
    Thanks A.J. If you get time, maybe you could confirm a couple of things for me.

    First, can the compression be turned completely off, or is it always on and just turned way down?

    Second, is there a way to route signals coming in through the aux in RCA connectors so that the sound can come out the cabinets or the DI?

  5. Andy Brown

    Andy Brown Commercial User

    Jul 23, 2004
    Rhode Island
    Founder/Owner: Wing Instruments
    Hi Tom,

    I'm not exactly sure how to get a definitive answer (except from TC on the compression) to your first question, however I can state that it appears as though the AUX is routed directly to the headphone jack. Plugging something into the AUX does not cancel the speakers however.

    I'll try to find out the answer to your first question.

  6. A.L.

    A.L. promusica.it

    Sep 30, 2006
    Treviso - Italy
    Endorsing Artist: Music Man
    I belive the voice of the preamp is pretty flat...so using the eq and the tube emulator (+ ears and some experience) you can dial very different tones.

    One thing to be clear...this happens only to the cabs...anyway I still prefer this over the usual carpet and plastic corners. I have to see it on a longer run.

    no, all round. I'll post some videos with the Music Man and I'll do some test with my '65 portaflex + '64 precision (w flats) very soon.

    Yes. I really can't see no reason why they did that. Anyway it seems a very easy to upgrade feature, I'm sure that the guys at TC will take notice...in the end this is what the Test Pilot Program is for, to me.

  7. Andy Brown

    Andy Brown Commercial User

    Jul 23, 2004
    Rhode Island
    Founder/Owner: Wing Instruments

    I can see why they went with the sharp-textured finish (friction to hold the cabs together when stacked) in order to keep the clean design of the cabs, however the Rhino finish that Jorg Schroder would be a pretty nice alternative too, then of course they would have to figure out another 'clean' way to keep the cabs together and stay within the aesthetic bounds they set for this system.
  8. A.L.

    A.L. promusica.it

    Sep 30, 2006
    Treviso - Italy
    Endorsing Artist: Music Man
    exactly! It's a totally cool look with the curved corners, so clean and modern.
  9. I tried the full stack with a Sandberg PM5 last friday. EQ on the bass set flat both PUs selected.

    I got the run-down of the amp and the cabs by the guy in the shop, so it was a while before I actually sat down and got to twisting some knobs.

    Compressor - very natural and clean sounding compressor, with a sweet spot (for me) at around 11 o'clock.

    EQ - it really grabs hold of your sound, so even a small twist of a knob will yield some serious results. When set 'flat' I found the sound very metallic and clanky - *click click click*. Something along the lines of Andrew Gouche... I did not like this at all. However, as soon as I rolled off the treble, boosted the mids and just tweaked the bass a little there was a quite fat, warm sound.

    Tube simulation - this can get pretty 'nice' sounding overdrive, but I wasn't very impressed with the 'warmth' it added. It seemed very forced, in the sense that it was not very natural sounding. I kept on thinking that a Boss pedal would have yielded about the same results. *oops*

    Footswitch, tuner and channels - very nice addition to the whole package that as well as the tuner being on the amp itself it has been included in the footswitch. The tuner was a little bit slow, but overall a great accessory and tool. The channel switches are seamless and the channels themselves are extremely easy to set, edit and delete. The footswitch is surprisingly small and quite light. I was also surprised at its small footprint, so it could easily sit at the front of your pedalboard.

    Looks - it's a damn sexy rig! Very small footprint, even though the cabs are quite deep (the 2x12" quite a lot more so than the 2x10") - perfect for a cramped stage!

    Overall cons - I thought the stack seemed like it was very easy to knock over and that the finish on both the cabs and the head was fragile, to put it politely.

    Sound - I really liked it. Very nicely done. I may be biased since it's a Danish product, but damn, I was impressed. I'm probably going to get one for my basscapades at university in September since it has the AUX in and headphone out.

    Well done, T.C.!
  10. Andy Brown

    Andy Brown Commercial User

    Jul 23, 2004
    Rhode Island
    Founder/Owner: Wing Instruments
    Hey Tom,

    Here is the response from TC...

    Dear Andy,
    Thank you for getting in touch with us.
    When the SpectraComp is set to 0 it is completely turned off and will not affect the signal in any way.

  11. Tom7

    Tom7 I'm so bright, my mom called me son! ;-)

    Jan 31, 2000
    Eagle River, Alaska
    Cool. Thanks Andy... and TC. :bassist:
  12. That's a nice design. Even though I still don't particularly like the compression to be tied to the gain control, the ability to adjust the level of compression to stay at a constant level regardless of the gain level is a nice design (by pushing the shift button in (edit:fixed it from gain!), which changes that control to 'compression level' if I read the manual correctly), and is, I guess, an OK compromise versus having a totally separate control for 'on the fly' compression adjustments independent of the gain level.

  13. Sorry about that! I'll fix my post. I just glanced quickly at the manual to see if you could vary the amount of compression.
  14. John Wentzien

    John Wentzien

    Jun 25, 2007
    Elberta, AL
    Artist:TC Electronic RH450 bass system (original test-pilot)
    Another nice touch on the compression is that it brings up the signal automaticly as you add more comp.--so it doesn't bring down the volume. Since it is a 3 band comp, it compresses evenly ---so your low notes sound even with higher notes.
    Most other comps. really squash the lower notes and barely touch the higher ones.
  15. jasper383


    Dec 5, 2004
    Durham NC
    The cabs are 8 ohms only?
  16. Very nice. I'm don't ever use compression in a live setting, but I assume many do, and it would be great for recording also. I used a Mesa M2000 for a while, and it had two 'two band' compressors, which were quite impressive. You could compress the low end for 'speaker safety and headroom' and totally leave the top end transiensts alone for a nice quick slap tone. Cool idea.
  17. Andy Brown

    Andy Brown Commercial User

    Jul 23, 2004
    Rhode Island
    Founder/Owner: Wing Instruments
    From the TC Electronic support site...

  18. loend68

    loend68 Supporting Member

    Jan 14, 2008
    Endorsing Artist: Spector Basses, T.C. Electronics
    Spent more time with the amp and it's really growing on me. I started over with tweaking the settings. I started out flat as someone mentioned and made less drastic changes. Alot of the 'grind' I was getting was an over-abundance of an upper mid frequency. I've got it tamed now and have actually started adding in a little of the tweeters. This is the first time I haven't immediately turned the tweeters off. Admittedly, I'm using very little of them. If 0 is 6 o'clock then I'm running them about 8 o'clock. Very subtle, but I like it.
    I'm pretty sure my issue with hearing myself from far away was more of a fight with the guitar player's frequencies. When I moved forward I was getting blasted with the guitar.

    I've also started using a little of the Spectracomp. It sounds pretty good. I like how it automatically adjusts the lover all level as you turn it up so you don't loose any volume.
    I'm still not liking the Tubetone. It sounds like a bad distortion pedal to me. Maybe I just need to play with it some more.

    I let a friend use the rig to rehearse and I ran into him today and he was raving about how it sounds.

    I think I'm going to be really bummed when I have to send it back.....

    Attached Files:

  19. hmjuice


    May 20, 2000
    Austin, TX USA
    I just pick one up after putting it though the paces at Bass Emporium. I have three gigs that are completely different in style and sound. I play with a Salsa/Merenge 8 piece band that doesn't always have a drummer but always has two percussionist. I play in dance/funk cover band with horns and two singers and finally I have the modern christian stuff at church every Sunday. The posts here have given me a lot of info so I'll post my option in the next week or two after I go through the normal 3-4 gig weekly schedule.

    Note, I didn't buy the speakers. I'm using a Bergantino AE410 with a Sadowsky MV5 and Modulus Q6. I normally play with the amp set flat but I found that sound didn't work for me in the store so more tweaking is on the way. I like the fact that I can save the sound as well since I move my rigs so much, I never try to move knobs but inadvertently the do adjust ever so slightly.
  20. Andy Brown

    Andy Brown Commercial User

    Jul 23, 2004
    Rhode Island
    Founder/Owner: Wing Instruments
    You know, it's funny to me that I never thought of this issue until now, but this is a MAJOR advantage to having the memory settings.

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