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TecAmp Puma Vs. Aguilar Tone Hammer

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by melodiaopus, Aug 6, 2012.


  1. melodiaopus

    melodiaopus Supporting Member

    Feb 9, 2007
    Austin, TX
    I have recently bought a Puma 1000, and I was wondering what the comparison is between the Puma line from TecAmp and The Tone Hammer line. I like the sound of the Puma, a lot but I'm not quite sure if the extra wattage is worth it to have since I don't play in that big of venue's. So, I would like some input from you folks on what I should do. I'm thinking about sizing down and going with the Tone Hammer 500.

    Thanks,

    -Adam
     
  2. melodiaopus

    melodiaopus Supporting Member

    Feb 9, 2007
    Austin, TX
    I'm looking for some advice as to whether I should sell the PUMA or not to get an Aguilar Tone Hammer 500 watt head.

    Not sure if the head I have now is really worth the money.

    -Adam
     
  3. phillybass101

    phillybass101

    Jan 12, 2011
    Artist, Trickfish Amplification Bartolini Emerging Artist, MTD Kingston Emerging Artist. Artist, Tsunami Cables
    Not having played the Aggie myself it's hard tp comment. But having seen and heard bass players play through Aggies I would say it's a "sound" and "tone" I've heard before. I personally chose the PUMA because I knew it would be a new tone for me. At my first gig with my PUMA 500, and Brubaker Brute MJX-5 I did not know what to expect. I ran everything flat. The band leader recorded the show with her camcorder and my bass recorded very well. It was low mid clean. clear punch for days. My bass never stepped on the kick drum and vice versa. I'm still learning how to use both together but I'm happy I have something different than the rest of the local players in my area and I sound different as well. Exactly what I was looking for. I helped influence another guy in my area to pick up one. I listen to myself when it comes to purchases and my tone and I do not like sounding like the majority of other cats out there. This may sound simplistic but it's why I arbitrarily chose the PUMA 500 over the Aggie. I figured more guys are buying and running the Aggies so I chose the PUMA. IMO you will go from sounding different to sounding like alot of other players. Its a very good tone and sound indeed and not to be knocked. Bass is one of the hardest instruments to develop a personal sound on. The PUMA kind of insures that I'm going to sound different. However I do believer to each his own when it comes to gear and tone. I say do what makes you happy. With the sale of the 1000 you could still probably have both an Aggie and smaller PUMA.
     
  4. melodiaopus

    melodiaopus Supporting Member

    Feb 9, 2007
    Austin, TX
    Thanks. I was thinknig about trading it back in for the Puma 900. I don't think I need that much headroom for what I play, plus at the price I paid I'm not sure if it's really even worth it. I love the tone of the PUMA and get through the mix in a live situation, but I'm just thinking about the total cost of the amp and I might be able to trade it in for the 900 and get some cash back.
     
  5. nostatic

    nostatic Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2004
    lost angeles, CA
    Endorsing Artist: FEA Labs
    I haven't run the 1000 but own the 500 and 900, and have also owned and gigged most other micro heads. Before I got the Puma I had the TH500. It really depends on what sound you're going for and what features you want. The Puma 1000 frankly doesn't make much sense to me as a general use head now that the new design 500/900 heads are out. Unless you need two separate power stages.

    To me the main differences are in the midrange sound and the dynamics/headroom. The TH500 always has a bit of hair - it won't get uber clean. But I dig that tone, and if you're into a warmer or more vintage vibe that head kills. If you want some drive to your sound the TH500 is a good choice as well as you can crank the drive and get a good (to some people's ears) crunch. It also has a parametric EQ and two speakons - some people may want/need those features.

    The newer PUma 500/900 is a bit more open tone, though it tends to have more mid punch than something like a GB Shuttle. I find the low mid and hi mid eq points to be perfect, and the eq just works for my applications. The amp has very good dynamics but you have to pay attention to what you're doing. It is highly touch responsive. So far I have nothing negative to say about my Pumas, and that's why I bought two of them. One for main, one for backup.
     
  6. MKA

    MKA

    Apr 14, 2012
    Northern Europe
    I own the Puma 500 and have played the Tone Hammer 500 at a shop. To me, the TH was nothing special, a good vintage-sounding micro but thats pretty much it.

    The Puma on the other hand has been a sort of a revelation to me. Super smooth, super punchy and super fast, perfect eq-points (for me), and overall just inspiring tone. Compared to the TH I find the Puma much more "lively", like its always just eager to spit those smooth notes out.

    The TH is definately more vintage-sounding, but with the "taste"-knob you can get the puma sound more old school if thats what you want. Both good heads, but between these two I'll take the Puma :cool:
     
  7. melodiaopus

    melodiaopus Supporting Member

    Feb 9, 2007
    Austin, TX
    I owned a Epi 502 before and really disliked the dark tone of the Epi. I have found that I can get really amazing tone with my PUMA 1000. I think I'll stick with my PUMA, but maybe I can return it for the PUMA 900 since the extra bells and whistles the PUMA 1000 offers just isn't worth it to me, since I'll never need to switch power to two different cabinents. Plus, it'll save me some money. I just hope that Glenn from Austin Bass Traders is willing to trade it back since I bought it about 2 months ago.

    -Adam
     
  8. melodiaopus

    melodiaopus Supporting Member

    Feb 9, 2007
    Austin, TX
    Also, how do you guys who use the PUMA line set up your compression? I have an active bass and I found that the more I turn the compression knob over the more volume I lose. How do you guys setup your EQ for your puma. I have it ran flat with both the Bass and Treble boost on.

    -Adam
     
  9. MKA

    MKA

    Apr 14, 2012
    Northern Europe
    There is no built-in compressor in the puma 500/900 1u models, also no bass/treble-boost knobs.

    I run my puma mostly flat. Sometimes I like to boost the lo mid for some extra punch. If I want "soften" my sound, I cut the hi mids just a bit. But honestly, I could run this head flat all the time and just tweak the taste-knob a bit to suit the particular bass I'm playing.
     
    bass nitro likes this.
  10. melodiaopus

    melodiaopus Supporting Member

    Feb 9, 2007
    Austin, TX
    Hopefully Glenn will take back my PUMA 1000 and send me a PUMA 900. I spent over $1900 on the Puma 1000 with a case for it.
     
  11. nostatic

    nostatic Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2004
    lost angeles, CA
    Endorsing Artist: FEA Labs
    2 months is way beyond a typical full-exchange window. He'll have to sell it used so don't be shocked at a low trade-in value.

    I frankly end up switching my compressor (on the pedal board) off with the Tecamp setup as I like to work the dynamics of the front end. I do still end up using it in certain rooms or if I need to tighten up the Rob Allen low end a bit.
     
  12. phillybass101

    phillybass101

    Jan 12, 2011
    Artist, Trickfish Amplification Bartolini Emerging Artist, MTD Kingston Emerging Artist. Artist, Tsunami Cables
    Flat is where it's at. and I don't use compression. My right hand is very active. from playing bass so much my hands are turning into mits rather than hands. It's amazing. I have developed bass player hands.
     
  13. hands5

    hands5

    Jan 15, 2003
    good 'ol USA/Tampa fla.
    none
    not that I own ither one of these heads but I've A/B'd both and I would probably go with the "cat" with that being said I think if you're using a bit of compression then the TH500 seems to maintain it's volume a little more IMO, but not by much also to me if you have an active bass with hum canceling or Soap bar pickups, then there's sort of compressed tone that's there to begin with so using the amp's compression doesn't really seem to help it at all and I'm not sure that it's needed, but that's just me.
     

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