The 80s called, they want their rack back.

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by davegt666, Jan 4, 2015.

  1. Finally got my rack together. Always wanted one!

    A GK 400RB, DBX 166, and a Furman Pl-8. It's a simple rack, yes, but a rack nonetheless. There's something about older equipment that I like. I find them aesthetically pleasing, most are built well, and they are usually cheap! Most of the stuff sounds great too. Granted my 400RB is from the 90s but these beasts were around since the 80s :thumbsup:.

    I spent $375 in total for this rig and it's a pretty compact tone monster IMO.

    GK 400RB - $175
    Furman Pl-8 - $50
    DBX 166 - $60
    Elite Core 4U Rack - $90

    My 400RB didn't come with rack ears so I had to make some with aluminum angle from Home Depot. They turned out pretty good! I was going to paint them black but I kind of like the raw metal look. I might change my mind later.

    I play through a Carvin BRX 4.10 that I got for cheap too, $225, and it just slays. I haven't needed to go past noon so far!

    It seems like the 80s were the heyday of big rack equipment. Anybody else care to share their 80s rack gear?

    Fuzzbass, hintz, nanymoa and 10 others like this.
  2. BazzTard

    BazzTard Inactive

    yep, cheap, and bulky and heavy.

    I have a Hartke HA2500 in a rack case. Never use it.
    My 2kg MarkBass in a tiny backpack/case will do the same job.
  3. Basshappi


    Feb 12, 2007
    Yep, back in the day had the whole racked up, bi-amped rig. Even tried tri-amped once but had to borrow other pieces of equipment to complete it and it didn't sound any better so I ditched that idea! :D Ahhh youth. Unfortunately I don't have any pics of my old rigs.

    If the rack is working for you then rock the hell out of it and don't let anyone tell you different.
  4. I'm young I can handle the weight.

    I'll get a MB500 when I'm 50. :laugh:
  5. dukeorock

    dukeorock Owner BNA Audio Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2011
    Nashville, TN
    Authorized greenboy designs builder/Owner of BNA Audio
    I still use a rack for lots of my gigs because I double a lot and need two separate pres.

    My rack is usually;

    Michael Pope MPP2 pre
    dbx 2031 graphic eq (on the upright channel)
    Carvin DCM2000L poweramp

    Not too heavy at all and works great!

    Sometimes I run my JGR/Reiner 6SL7 tube pre in a bigger rack as well for my ultimate doubling rack.

    At its most extreme, my rack weighs maybe 40lbs. Small price to pay for the tone I want :)
    davegt666 likes this.
  6. BazzTard

    BazzTard Inactive

    hehe and I was gonna say that you must still be young to buy that.

    I'm 53 . My back hurts lifting ME let alone anything else.

    When they make 5 inch speakers as good as 10s I'll buy them too

    Enjoy that rig, hope your band makes it sufficiently big to afford a roadie
    hintz, soxhats, obimark and 3 others like this.
  7. Amen! I haven't weighed the rig but I doubt mine weighs more than 40lbs either. The 400rb is only like 14lbs and that's the heaviest thing in there.

    Thanks brother!
  8. Arthur U. Poon

    Arthur U. Poon

    Jan 30, 2004
    SLC, Utah -USA-
    Endorsing Artist: Mike Lull Custom Basses
    Cool rack! Congrats!

    The 80's can't have my rack back. I'm 51, and I can still schlep it, and when I use it, I never feel I'm missing a thing performance wise. If I didn't have my rack, I'd most likely use an SVT or an Aguilar DB751.

    I have a TH500 for the smaller clubs, fantastic little micro head. But comparing it's performance to my rack isn't a fair fight.
    JMacBass65 and squidtastic like this.
  9. I still can't get the pix to upload correctly, but here goes: Ancient Hartke Model 2000 Mosfet head, Sabine Tuner, and an ancient Peavey reverb/delay (just a touch for the fretless) in a 6-space SKB. Yeah it weighs a ton, but I'm keeping it until it dies. Then I'll find another, maybe bump up to the 3500, maybe not-half the "magic" is getting the power amp side cranking. FWIW, I run a Streamer RB 5 and a Kramer fretless 4 with SWR 210 and Black Widow 115 boxes. Lots of "official TB Rules" broken here, but I don't really care. This crap all kind of fell together as other stuff quit/died/got sold off, and it all somehow works really well together, IMHO :) BTW, I'm 48 and Loadout time is the only time I hate my rig....
    Bubby Brown likes this.
  10. Wow davegt666, Yours is very similar to one of mine from back in the old days: A GK 400RB, DBX 166, Ashley 7 band parametric EQ (PQX 571 ?) and a TrippLite Power conditioner.

    The parametric EQ was there because I used this rig a good bit with a 1942 Kay OM100B Double Bass that had a standard Fishman pickup, and the ability to notch-filter was important. This very rig is still sitting in the basement of a drummer friend of mine on more-or-less permanent loan, and to the best of my knowledge, it still works. This is the best photo I could dig up:

    Amp 1.JPG
    davegt666 and carsbybigd like this.
  11. rolandm

    rolandm In search of the lowest note.

    Aug 8, 2010
    Peoria, IL
    GK BL600 (with enough breathing room), S&R to a dbx215, piped to the dbx163X, to the BBE362 and back, tuner out to the other channel of the 215 for my IEMs (one of the bands I play in has a notoriously loud sound, and if I can't bring my 810, this helps A LOT!).

  12. AdamR

    AdamR Inactive

    Sep 24, 2007
    Bethel CT
    I have an 8 space rack. I had a 3 space amp, I sliding drawer with my wireless and DI pedal, a rack tuner and a Furman. Just switched to a 2 space amp and an no longer want to run the pedals so Im looking at a smaller rack.
    rolandm likes this.
  13. SteveV74

    SteveV74 Inactive

    Jul 24, 2012
    Huh, its 2015, Im 40, and I still want huge racks of 50 when that changes?
    Jeff Elkins, davegt666 and AdamR like this.
  14. marko138


    May 24, 2013
    Perry County PA
    Here's my rack in it's former glory. None of it from the 80s. All purchased in early 2000s. I was a big fan of racks until about 8 weeks ago when I sold my HA3500 and bought an Ampeg Portaflex 500. 11 pounds. Bought a pedal tuner.

    If I ever gig again, or even next time I jam with my buddies, the rack stays home. I'll throw my PF and pedal in a bag and take off.

    Anyway....HA3500, Nady wireless, Korg tuner and a power conditioner:


    carsbybigd likes this.
  15. I have my Ampeg SVT 3 Pro mounted in a SKB 6 space rack that I picked up cheap. The rack has wheels and a pull out handle like luggage, so it's easy to move. I added a Furman, vent panels and an LED to give it some bling.

    The wheels and not wanting to carry the amp with it's sharp corners exposed in my car are the primary reason I went with a rack.

    carsbybigd likes this.
  16. j.kernodle


    Nov 23, 2008
    South Carolina
    Nice job on the rack ears!

    It's not like you have a tube head in there. I doubt your setup weighs more than 25lbs unless the rack itself is super heavy.
    davegt666 likes this.
  17. Dave Hill

    Dave Hill Supporting Member

    Jan 9, 2005
    Atlanta, GA
    Racks still make the most sense to me. Love the gear I have in them too. Guess i'm not old enough to care about moving it yet (44).

  18. MVE


    Aug 8, 2010
    I used to lug around a Mackie 1200 and a Demeter VTBP-201; before that it was the Mackie and an ABA MB-1. But I never had enough money for a rack to put it in. :( So it was always a big pile of cables and heavy metal boxes on top of my rig... Oh, the good ol days.

    Anyway, if you REALLY want an 80's-90's rack you gotta get an MB-1 or an SGX Nightbass in there. ;) nothing screams 80's like big useless noisy effects processors.
  19. punchdrunk

    punchdrunk Inactive

    Jun 22, 2013
    This is one of the more impressive racks from the 80s..... image.jpg
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2015
  20. red_rhino

    red_rhino Currently on Double Secret Probation Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 26, 2001
    Over Macho Grandé
    Obviously stereo, too.