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TC Electronics rh450 -- for upright? vs. GK400RB?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by GuelphBassie, Mar 4, 2013.

  1. GuelphBassie


    Feb 26, 2013
    I'm just wondering if anyone has used the RH450 for upright? I play lots of different styles on upright and electric but mostly reggae, jazz and R&B and I'd like to be able to get away with just using one head.

    Also, I'm thinking of using the RH450 to replace my GK400RB. Any thoughts on the comparison between the two? The RH is rated at 450 watts and the GK is 280 but I find it hard to believe that it's going to be almost twice as powerful.

    I'm running into a TC RS210 and/or an Ampeg SVT15E.

    Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated!
  2. The TC actually specs out at 236 watts, with active signal management is meant to "seem like 450 watts". I question how all that signal management would sound with a DB? Might destroy the whole flavor of a DB.
  3. I've heard Chris Thomas (DB for Brian Blade Fellowship) use an RH 450 with a TC 2/10 cab and an acoustic bass. Sounded great. I would think it would be a good choice. BTW, I have a used RH 450 for sale ($450 CONUS) if interested.
  4. arai

    arai Banned

    Jul 16, 2007
    The rh450 has 4 semi parametric EQs that would probably be handy with an acoustic instrument
  5. Zoa


    Dec 28, 2009
    I think the RH450 would be terrible for upright. It compensates for lack of power by compressing the **** out of everything and slicing lows as you turn it up. So much of the upright's sound is in the initial attack and in the fundamental and other low frequencies, both of which the RH450 sucks at reproducing. I've only played the RH450 with a slab, but I think you'd lose a lot of that signature doghouse thump, which is the primary reason I play it over a slab. Then again, I'm a bluegrass/oldtime/rockabilly/rock'n'roll player, so your tonal needs may be different than mine. I'd imagine it'd do fine with arco, not so great with pizz, and awful for slap.
  6. 4-string


    Jul 23, 2006
    Really? Are you listening with your ears, or did you read something.....? ;)

    My RH750 (also 236 watts, and surely even more compressed, right?) absolutely kills when playing slap, it's actually its forte IMO. And despite its voice, it really lets each instrument's voice shine.

    Another bassplayer used my rig, the RH750 sounded killer with his upright.

    Not saying the RH are for everyone, I just disagree with what you are saying.
  7. 4-string


    Jul 23, 2006
    BTW, Mark King uses TC heads now. Good thing he doesn't slap much. ;)
  8. Zoa


    Dec 28, 2009
    Hmm, maybe I'm wrong then. I've always hated how the RH series gets lost in the mix with slab, but with upright, (like I said) I've never heard it, so I'm just assuming. Bad guess, as it turns out.
  9. 4-string


    Jul 23, 2006
    Perhaps you would hate it if you tried it on a gig also, who knows. Not saying you wouldn't, we all hear things differently. :)
  10. I am Soma

    I am Soma Supporting Member

    Jan 2, 2013
    I've never heard anything bad out of an TC RH head. Those amps will melt your face.
  11. Zoa


    Dec 28, 2009
    Looks like I need to find one to try then. GC gives you all sorts of dirty looks when you roll in with the big bull fiddle though :eyebrow:
  12. I recall earlier on, there were several upright players highlighted in the artist section of the RH450 pages. The focus of the site has clearly changed.

  13. GrowlerBox


    Feb 10, 2010
    Nude Zealand
    I have the RH450 and a Markbass F1 (see sig). The primary voicing of the TCE amp is not ideal for DB, at least for jazz, IMO -- perhaps it would suit other styles of music.

    It can be made to work, though, and this is where the fantastic EQ section is very much your friend. I set mine by using a large-diaphragm condenser microphone on the bass, in a fairly
    "classic" location (in front of the treble-side, between the f-hole and the end of the fingerboard), recorded various 3 octave scales, and then used that as my reference for comparing pickup-fdeck HPF-Pre-RH450-BFM Jack 12, with mic on the speaker, dead centre, with the bass as off-axis as possible and me shielding as much as possible. I made all recordings in Logic-Pro and used a spectrum analyser to inform EQ adjustments until I had it as close as possible to "my bass but louder", then used this as a preset, and a basis from which to adjust for various rooms, etc.

    Worked pretty well, but at the end of the day, the Markbass has a much flatter and wider inherent voice which makes it the more suitable of the two for DB, at least for me. I love the RH450 on EUB and BG, but I never double (at least I haven't to date), so I can keep separate amps. I use the same cab for everything, though -- the Jack 12 is a great cabinet, very efficient, with great tonal clarity, and very light (if a little bulky in its linear dimensions).

    If you do double, and can afford the time it takes to get the DB tone you want from the RH450, it's a fantastic amp and makes for a simple rig with all the on-board whizz-bangery and little need to carry much else.

    Last thing -- it has a 1 MOhm input impedance which works well enough for most piezo DB pickups, but I still wouldn't use it without my fdeck HPF-Pre, which frankly can make almost any bass amp at least usable for DB.

    Hope that's helpful. :)
  14. I found tone of the RH450 to be a bit "thick" with my upright. That may be OK depending on what you're playing.

    The footswitch is gold though - mute, tuner, EQ presets all at your feet. I didn't think the EQ setup was ideal for feedback rejection. A bit too fiddly to find and fix feedback frequencies shifting back and forth b/w frequency and level on the one knob. Great amp though - and certainly loud enough for any gig on an upright.

    * oh and ....the EQ presets are an excellent feature for doubling. Set one EQ for your slab, one for the doghouse and feed both in with an A/B pedal.

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