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The Anti-GK amp... What did you buy instead?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Tunaman, Mar 14, 2005.

  1. Tunaman


    Dec 26, 2004
    Personally I love my GK amp but I can totally understand selling it for a warmer, less hi fi type of sound. If GK was not your thing what is your Anti-GK amp? Please mention what style, genre of music you play.
    My GK 1001RB 8 years old, sounds awesome for that GK sound, I play ska but have a new band that could use a new warm, fuller sound.
  2. silky smoove

    silky smoove

    May 19, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    Had a 2001RB for a while.... however a bright blue flash and a whole lot of smoke pouring out of the front grill convinced me to return it and end up buying a Mesa/Boogie M-Pulse 600 off of TB'er 57PBass (thanks Dan!)
  3. Plain Old Me

    Plain Old Me

    Dec 14, 2004
    If you want really full sound, go all tube. Sunn/Fender 300, SVT, Trace Elliot, Augilar, Demeter, Eden, and Mesa Boogie are all good options, but Augilar and Demeter require bigger budgets. I have a Trace V4 at the moment and am looking for an SVT. I played the Mesa 400+ and it wasn't my sound. The Fender Bassman 300 sounds awesome and has tons of controls, but sometimes has reliability issues. Never even seen the Eden model, though. Oh, and Marshall makes a 400 watter that I've never seen; its probabally got a really distorted sound which I would most likely not like.
    Korladis likes this.
  4. Eric Moesle

    Eric Moesle

    Sep 21, 2001
    Columbus OH
    Former user of the GK 2000RB. After it decided to send smoke to the room instead of sound, and after a HORRID warranty experience, I sold it and bought an Eden Navigator preamp and QSC power amp. Never looked back.
  5. xcental34x


    Feb 28, 2003
    Memphrica, TN
    Genz, but I might switch back to GK, or possibly even get a Mesa Mpulse.
  6. Woodboy


    Jun 9, 2003
    St. Louis, MO
    Had a 700 rb-I. Needed more power. Sold it and got a 1001 rb-II and a 210 RBH and 115 RBH. Tried that rig for about a week and took it back to the store. Very harsh sounding. I am an old-school finger style player and the only thing I slap are my kids and the only thing I pop is corn. The Eden 550 with a 210 XLT is smooth, clear and deep. I had to roll off the trebles on my passive bass with the GK stuff to keep my ears from bleeding. I can run the treble all the way up with the Eden rig and it sounds great. Another crazy thing about the GK cabs is that they did not lock together. The corner gizmos did not line up. The 210 nearly fell off the 115.
  7. Eric Moesle

    Eric Moesle

    Sep 21, 2001
    Columbus OH
    Nice . . . . great for a signature line! :D
  8. Arthur U. Poon

    Arthur U. Poon

    Jan 30, 2004
    SLC, Utah -USA-
    Endorsing Artist: Mike Lull Custom Basses
    I personally view Ampeg as the "Anti-G-K" amp. After making a bonehead move and sending it in for repairs, I've sold my 2000RB head to one of my nephews, and it's still working like a charm. I still have a 1001RB 2-10" combo and a 400RB-III head, which get used occasionally.

    I love the punchy G-K tone but I felt my tone needed a bit more warmth. I play in a two bands, one is a country band with a female singer, the other plays a little of everything.

    After trying a couple of Ampeg head/cabinet combinations, and rackmounted preamp/stereo power amp combinations (SWR IOD and QSC PLX-series), I've settled on a Read Custom Purity tube preamp, a Crest CA-9 power amp, and a Bergantino HT210/HT115 cab setup.

    I really prefer a preamp/power amp setup, but if one's impractical for you, I see a few Eden recommendations posted; I really like their products and personally, they would be my second choice. I've only had the chance to play through one of their earlier models, a WT.40, which sounded really good. I've owned a D-410XLT cab which IMO, is a fantastic cab.

    - Art
  9. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

    When I went to pick up my Kustom GB1200 that I ordered, I noticed that my local music shop also had a GK 1001RB II there. I said to the shop owner, hmmm, maybe I should try the GK before finalizing on the Kustom. He said asked me to pay for the Kustom, take them both home for a couple of nights, and if I like the GK better, I would just give him the difference (about $150).

    Even though the GK was lighter (definatly a plus), I personally found the tone a lot more sterile that the Kustom. I tried them both on the same cabs. True, the GK seemed a bit louder under an 8 ohm load (1 - 8 ohm 2x10 cab). When I put them both under a 4 ohm load (an 8 ohm 2x10 and an 8 ohm 1x12) the Kustom was actually louder (strange huh, but true!). I did not have the oportunity to put them both on a 2 ohm load (not sure if the GK can do this but the Kustom can).

    Anyway, I found the tone on the GK bright and "in your face". Very solid state sounding. Yes, you can get a bit of growl out of the GK with the gain knob, but that's all I could get, just a bit (another bass like a MM might help, I was using my P).

    The Kustom was not quite as bright (but close) with the main up and the gain at 5 or 6. Enabliing the mid-shift and other EQ settings will help this. Now here is where things get different. When you crank the gain knob to just where the clipping light comes on and then back it off a hair, the Kustom gets nice and gritty! Almost SVTish. Very warm and gritty. This is the tone I've been looking for out of a solid state head (and I've owned a couple heads with tube pre-amps and could not get this).

    Weight (nice and light)
    Nice bright, in your face tone (if that's your fancy)
    Has cross-over capabilities (but also a con, see below)

    A little too bright for my taste (can't get a tube sound out of it)
    Reliability - a bunch of these series II have fried (do a search here and go look at harmony central reviews, lots of fried GK1001 II's there. To GK's credit, they do say that they know what the prob is and have fixed it and am willing to fix on users heads already out there. (update, Daniel from GK informed me that only a small number of 1001's were effected and that they have fixed most of them free of charge)
    Only goes down to 4 ohms minimum
    Has crossover capabilities but only works with GK cables and cabs. I don't know why GK would not allow you to do this with other brands of cabs (all other head manufactures allow for this). Total BS on this one IMHO!

    Good solid state tone if you want it (not as quite as broight as the GK)
    Nice warm, gritty tone for a SS head (almost overdrivenish/tubish)
    Killer Looks (lots of polished and stainless steel, bright LEDs)
    Good bundle (includes 8 ft HEAVY DUTY Speakon cable and nice footswitch with solo boost and mute functions)
    Goes down to 2 ohms(woohoo )!!!

    A little heavy for my tastes (31 lbs)
    No 1/4" speaker outs (Speakon outs only, but Hosa and other make Speakon to 1/4' adapters for pretty cheap and most newer cabs have speakon connectors anyway)
    New model, reliabilty unknown (only been out since early summer 04), but have yet to see any reports of failure on any forum, harmony central, etc.
  10. Mike A

    Mike A

    Oct 3, 2002
    ...Or you could get a SABDDI or tube preamp of some sort and run it through the GK.

    Also, what type cabs are you using? Cabs usually have at least as much effect on "warmth" as the head, IME... if not more.
    Kevnn4 and MobileHolmes like this.
  11. barroso


    Aug 16, 2000
    Being a great GK tone lover, i found a great complementar tone in a TECH21 Landmark600 head.

    Tonally different, but both great amps.
  12. illidian


    Jul 2, 2004
    Anti-GK would be heavy and require lots of maintenance (all-tube).

    But I would've gone with a Mesa M-PULSE (take however much power you need) if I hadn't run across GK. Stand by my decision, the M-PULSE amps are great, but Gallien-Krueger amps are tubeless (which I thought I needed) and also cheaper. :hyper:
  13. Tunaman


    Dec 26, 2004
    Now thats the stuff right there. Complemetar tone. Actually at a 4 hour practice today I did some tweaking during the songs especially with the contour. If I switch playing style, pic etc thats my go to knob to keep an even tone. In fact I may have settings for each song in my set because the GK got great tone for each song with some tweaking. Funny how you want different tone for each song sometimes...
    I'll never get rid of the GK way to versatile, perfect for many situations, been extremely reliable. I definetely wouldn't trade for an Eden... Maybe its a tube thing but I absolutely HATED the Aguilar DB750.
    Thanks for the recommendations
  14. Deaj


    Aug 15, 2004
    Kingston, WA
    When I'm looking for a warmer, old school sound I run the line out on my Ampeg B-50R practice amp to the effects return on my GK 1001RB-II. The B-50R is a 50watt solid state 1x12 combo practice amp but it cops a B15N tone pretty well. Not the perfect solution but it's a really great tone and I don't have to spend any more money to get it :)
    Korladis likes this.
  15. Special_Ed


    Oct 3, 2004
    Man everyone's advice sucks. The best anti GK amp is a Yorkville xs800h. It is the SAME price, LOUDER and way WARMER sounding.
  16. Eric Moesle

    Eric Moesle

    Sep 21, 2001
    Columbus OH
    Why, thank you very much . . . :mad:
    Kevnn4 and Korladis like this.
  17. stinky_UK


    Feb 3, 2005
    i would second the sansamp Bass Driver,rackmount or not.Better still try the programmable one. Its small and has great tone.
  18. eots


    Dec 18, 2004
    Morris, IL.
    I had an 800RB for a few years. Kind of sterile sounding. That can be a good thing to some, but after it quit a couple times, opted for a new Yamaha bt500h and 2 Euphonic Audio wizzy 112's. I have hi-fi or vintage in 1 10lb. amp :)
    I play Sunday mornings in church (gospel,praise & worship) and like rock as well. Before I got this Yamaha, I used my Carvin pb200 combo for most gigs cause it had adequet(sp )power and the GK was usually left at home for practice.
  19. bassman314

    bassman314 I seem to be a verb, an evolutionary process...

    Mar 13, 2005
    Bay Area, CA
    I chose the Ampeg SVT3-PRO (2004)... It's an all-tube pre-amp with a solid state power amp and a "tube driver". It's not as warm as a full-tube Power-Amp, but then again, all the full-tube PA's I've seen were either to small for my needs, or out of my price range. The 3-PRO was good compromise for my needs.

    I also use a Peavey Microbass III for a practice amp.. and (please don't hurt me) a Behringer MIC100 microphone pre-amp for my accoustic bass.

    I use behringer, because they do make decent components at affordable prices. Would I replace my Behringer stuff with better stuff if I could afford it? Absolutely! For now, it works. It creates a nice, warm tube sound that sounds great with my Acoustic Bass.
  20. protoz


    Nov 30, 2000
    Seems to be a common thing. That happened to my Backline 115 so I picked up a Hartke5000 and kept using the cab. I stil have the Hartke but I also have a Sunn Coliseum 300 that I've been loving.