Three different timeperiods / Three different rigs

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by lo-freq, Jul 21, 2013.

  1. lo-freq

    lo-freq aka UFO

    Jan 19, 2003
    SW, OK
    This might be more for those that have been playing bass for a few years, but whoever can play.


    If you could go back in time & pick your 1st bass equipment (including bass guitar) knowing then what you know now, what would you have bought (my 1st bass rig was a real cheapo POS, so I won't say it has to be for the same price)?


    If you could go back in time & replace your 1st really good bass rig (incl. BG) with something similar in price, what would you have gotten?


    If you could replace your current rig (incl. BG) with something in the same general price range, what would you get?

    P.S. Relative newbies can collapse this down to two or one as appropriate.

    I will start it off.


    About 1967 - Had a Noble Hofner-copy bass & Gregory (???) head & cab (never saw one since, but it was a POS).
    Give me Fender P bass, a Sunn Head & 215 JBL-loaded cab.


    About 2000 - (well about 3 years earlier I got a EB MM StingRay 5, then...) Got a Demeter VTBP-201S, QSC PLX1602, & Bergantino HT322.
    In retrospect, I would have gotten a Fender Roscoe Beck V, Aguilar DB750, & a pair of Bergantino HT115.


    Today I still have my trusty StingRay 5 & have a EA iAmp-600, a Yamaha PB-1 preamp + CP2000 power amp, & EA CX-310 -- now this (in any combination) is a really great-sounding rig, just heavy as all get-out.
    Would like to have a Valenti PJ 5 (w/ Nordy Big Split J pup & Nordy preamp) bass guitar, Genz Benz ShuttleMax 9.2, & a Baer ML212.
  2. majortoby


    Jul 2, 2009
    Tampa, Fl USA
    I'd just go back in time, and a buy the very first (non-split p/up) P bass, and an SVT with two 810's. That'd probably cost like, idk, a lot less than it does
  3. FWIW: I’ve been playing since the 60s and the only thing I miss is my 1950’s Fender telecaster that I sold to my best friend Geoff for $100, but it‘s in good hands. I like all the new lightweight, compact bass gear now available - these are good times.
  4. 1) Doesn't really matter as I was not able to use it to its full capability, I was learnin'.

    2) My really good first rig didn't need to be replaced by anything.

    3) I am very happy with my current rig, why would I consider replacing it?
  5. TinIndian

    TinIndian Supporting Member

    Jan 25, 2011
    Micco Florida
    1st rig was a Peavey TNT100 and a Fender Musicmaster. Not bad learning stuff.

    1st Really good rig was a Peavey Centurion MarkIII thru a 215 Black Widow loaded cab and a Peavey Foundation S (still have the Foundation).

    Current rig is Genz Benz Streamliner 900 thru a Genz NeoX 212T. I wouldn't change anything as far as my current rig goes. Lightweight, great tone and can get loud when needed.
  6. lo-freq

    lo-freq aka UFO

    Jan 19, 2003
    SW, OK
    Happy is good; I got nothing against happy.
  7. CraigTB


    Feb 16, 2012
    1) My first starter Yamaha was a fine bass to learn on. Same goes for the Workingman's 12 combo I got. The SWR incidentally ended up being an awesome choice, I've always had some use for it over the last 15 years or so - as a silent headphones practice setup, as an amp for keys or drum machines, as a good-enough rig to record sketch tracks with, and nowadays again for bass as the practice amp that sits next to the television when I'm too lazy to get off the couch. Big picture, it's probably the most bang for the buck out of all my gear.

    2) My first nice bass was a big mistake. I should have spent another year putting time in on my starter Yamaha but after playing for less than a year I got my first case of GAS and fell in love with G&L ASATs without ever even playing one in person. I got one in swamp ash without realizing how dang heavy it was, or how un-ergonomic it was for me, or how the bewildering array of tone options weren't doing me any good - at that point I barely could tell a jazz bass from a p bass tonewise, let alone dialing in the G&L. Plus my technique sucked. Should have gotten a nice MIJ Fender PJ bass. My first rig upgrade was to a Peavey T-MAX 115 combo. That was a good choice, weighed a ton but had nice tone and more volume than I ever needed. Took a beating too. Fell down face-first about five feet onto concrete and a bunch of knobs broke off but it still worked 100%. Probably damaged the concrete.

    3) Nowadays all is good. At least I think so today :) Currently playing either a G&L Tribute L2500 or a P-bass through a mesa boogie Walkabout & Avatar TB153. Sounds good and easy to schlep.
  8. nukes_da_bass

    nukes_da_bass Inactive

    Feb 19, 2006
    west suburban boston
    1. Started on a Seiwa P and TKO65. Would have gotten a decent setup on the Japanese P and a more giggable amp.

    2. 75 fender jazz and gk400rb/hartke115 transporter. Bass needed work that i couldnt afford so i would have got her overhauled, and would have done the rig BACKWARDS with a harke 7000 and oh lets say Ampeg 410.

    3. I have a 400+ and a Schroeder 212. Maybe a 2nd 212? Maybe not :)
  9. First real amp was a VOX Royal Guardsman, all tube. It had good tones but wasn't very loud. Looked good though! I used it for bass and it did the job well.
    An entertainer in Branson currently, Todd Oliver, has three Super Beatles on stage, all original with no mods. They really sound good. A fourth one used for bass has been modified. I like to think my old VOX sounded similar to the Super B's but just not as loud. If so I sounded OK back then.
  10. nojj

    nojj Guest

    May 20, 2013
    My first bass amp was a Magnatone head, had these weird green glow strips behind the controls.
    Next was a Magnatone tall combo, SS w/ 2 15s
    After that I built a Heathkit bass head.
    Then one of the Kustom larger amps, like a 600 or an 800, w/ bassman cabs.
    Back in the day gear options were quite limited, so we all messed around w/ Wurltizer organ amps, Bogens and the like.
    Good times with piles of ungrounded chassis-only stuff..........

    After that it was mostly Ampegs, starting with a B25 and working my way up in the weight dept.
  11. will33


    May 22, 2006

    My first setup, circa 1984 was a Squier Bullet P-Bass and a Fender Sidekick combo amp with a 15 in it. Don't know that I'd have done anything different there. It was a good setup for a beginner, I played the bass until the frets were worn down so much I couldn't anymore. My parents still have the amp in their basement. It still works, has a pretty nice thump to it and actually sounds pretty good. That rig has seen a ton of gigs, both with our family band as a kid and another band until I grew up and moved away.

    #2-90's - early 2000's

    Got a Fender P-Lyte Deluxe. That one had active electronics and a soapbar pickup at the bridge in addition to the P-pickup. Then moved to a couple of bigger Carvin rigs. First was a PB-500 amp with 115 and 210 cabinets. That was a nicer rig than the one that followed, which was a Redline 600 with a 410 and the 115. What I should've done here was just get a regular P-Bass. I played the Lyte as long as I could but eventually it's really skinny neck got a twist in it I couldn't get worked out. For the rig, the best sounding parts were by far the PB500 head and the older V115 cab. Should've kept that amp and just got 2 of the 15's, that would've been a great setup for just about anything.


    Nowdays my 2 main basses are a mexican P and a Carvin kit bass. Both are real solid basses, wouldn't really want to get rid of either. Might put a reissue pickup in the P and the Carvin would benefit from active electronics. Many various amps and homemade DIY speakers. Pretty happy with this stuff. Might rebuild a cabinet setup just a little bit smaller. Happy with my amps, but maybe I should've passed on buying 1 or 2 of them and bought tubes for my Classic400 instead.
  12. 1. For my skill level and $, couldn't have done much better than my used Gran Prix P copy and free Peavey 1X15 combo. The bass was generic and cheap, but solidly built and had brass hardware. It would saved a lot of time and money to have bought my current rig back then, instead of all the ones in between.

    2. Ric 4001, Eden 400, Hartke XL cabs.. for the money, could not have done better. Can't say the rig was really inferior to many of the ones that replaced it. I have better basses now, but back in those days you bought the best bass you could afford from the limited stock at the local shop. Considering that, I couldn't have done better.

    3.'71 Fender 400PS, Sunn 415M, 2 Bag End D12Es. Also have some other stuff I use for practice, and a Carvin 10.2 NEO that I prefer w/the Fender to the Sunn, but space limits at home mean the 10.2 stays there and the 415 at the practice space. Wouldn't replace it with something in three times the price range. Too many basses to mention, mostly rare and all but irreplaceable. From time to time I do see interesting basses online, but haven't played any basses that I didn't own that I preferred to those I do. Maybe a custom Alembic with all the features I like from my other basses, all in one bass. But then I'd need them in 4,5,8, and fretless...
  13. ChopperDave

    ChopperDave Hai-ohhhhhhh!

    Nov 14, 2012
    Boston, MA
    I guess I'd replace everything in my history with what I have now, plus a Ric, a Bass VI, and a PJ?

    1. My first "rig" was a Hondo PJ and a Peavey 115 of some sort. It worked. Until I threw the bass at practice and cracked the neck. Punk as s--t, I was ... I also had a 70s Gibson RD Artist. I'm smallish, so I sold it for $250 for vacation money. My a-s is still sore from kicking myself.

    2a. My 90s rig was a Squier J (not sure of the year), a Yamaha fretless of some sort, and a Fender Dual Bass 400 + Peavey 1516. It cranked. I didn't know anything at the time about EQs other than "just scoop it," so I can't say my tone was great, but I loved it then. I eventually got my MIJ75RI J, but then I retired. At that time I would have loved to have had a Ric and an 8-string.

    2b. I came out of retirement in 2000 with the 75RI and an Ampeg BA115. I had a J Bass Special fretless neck bolted to the Squier body. It was all kind of meh, but they did the job through a handful of gigs. Back to retirement.

    3. Out of retirement again. Same 75RI, plus two Frankenbasses (the same Squier J from before but stripped, sanded, and stained, with an MIM neck and new control plate/pots; an Affinity P with Squier P-Special neck, awaiting strip/sand/stain), more effects than I used to use, and a rig I wouldn't trade for anything (unless it sounded exactly the same but weighed half as much): 700RB-ii + 2 SVT-15en cabs.

    I still have the Hondo neck plate; it's on my Franken-J.
  14. lo-freq

    lo-freq aka UFO

    Jan 19, 2003
    SW, OK
    Slight change to above...seems to be a moving target based on my most recent GAS:

    #3 pt.II --

    Same basic bass guitar, but with a P-pickup in the traditional location & a Dual-Coil optimized for parallel winding & a coil split switch (parallel or single-coil), a Demeter - Jule Amps DeMonique Tardis head, & Either a AudioKinesis TC212 v.2 or a Big E MAS-66 v.2 (with the 3" tweeters).
  15. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG
    Precision and V4B/810. Wasn't my first rig but it was my second bass and 3rd amp, the first two being a little Wards solid state 112 combo and an Acoustic 136 combo.

    Precision with a better pickup, maybe an SVT instead of a V4B (but maybe not...that V4B rocked the house through my loudest bands)

    Precision and a V4B/H810e, although I use two 210av's with the V4B. I love love love my SVT rigs, but despite it being less wattage, the V4B is perfectly capable of doing everything I need.

    I'm pretty well done experimenting around. That's what I started on, it works in every situation I'm in bar none, and that's what I'll be sticking with, although I might throw in a different bass now and then just to be irritating ;)
  16. russpurdy


    Apr 16, 2013
    So you could have skipped this thread altogether?
  17. russpurdy


    Apr 16, 2013
    1. First bass was a squier bronco after playing guitar for a long time. I'd rather have just had a proper P or J bass and called it good. I think I played it through a guitar amp so a decent 2x10 combo would have been nice. At the time I covered an SWR working man.

    2. First decent rig was a P bass copy (Samick I think) with a PJ configuration. It had a small goofy looking headstock and just didn't look right. Everything else about it was great and I wish I still had it. At the time however, I wanted a beat up sunburst P bass or would have at least settled for a real Fender like my first bass hero Matt Freeman. First amp was a peavey nitro bass or something similar with a 2x10 and 1x15 cabs. Hated it for punk but it was loud. Ideally I would have had a big ole ampeg stack like every other punk bassist at the time and a well worn sunburst p bass. Never would have needed anything more. Sold it all and went back to guitar for a long time.

    3. Currently I am back to the bass and have a squier CV jazz, 50's MIM P bass, and ibanez sr506. Amp is a yorkville bassmaster 800 with 8x8 cab. If I could have my dream rig it would have to be a pair of Digwalls (5'er and 6'er) a worn in sunburst jazz, a fat maple necked p bass all running through a combination of a fractal axe fx for modern options and a good ole svt for everything else (maybe throw a rack mounted GK in with the axefx for fun). 2 4x10's and 2 1x15's (either ampegs, emperors, or mark bass for lightweight) and I would be good for all of eternity. Dream rig engage!
  18. Passinwind

    Passinwind I know nothing. Commercial User

    Dec 3, 2003
    Columbia River Gorge, WA.
    Owner/Designer &Toaster Tech Passinwind Electronics
    Had: EB-O, B-15, Eliminator W-horn knockoff w/ Altec 421.

    Instead: A nice carved upright, but couldn't afford that then, still can't now. ;)


    If you could go back in time & replace your 1st really good bass rig (incl. BG) with something similar in price, what would you have gotten?

    Playing 40 years, 1st really good rig came just in last decade or less. Since it was really good (EA CxL-112 cab, AI Focus head, DIY preamp), no need to replace. In hindsight I could've just called things good at that point (and did as far as basses), but on the amp and cab side the DIY bug bit pretty hard and I don't really regret that. First good bass: '77 Travis Bean; still have it, wouldn't change that. Since then I've bought 3 more basses, kept two, no regrets, no GAS at all.


    If you could replace your current rig (incl. BG) with something in the same general price range, what would you get?

    Whatever I decide to build next on amp side (500watt integrated amp in the works currently), possibly whatever one of my forward thinking speaker builder friends here comes up with next. So maybe: Audiokinesis, Baer, Barefaced, BigE, Greenboy, etc. I am really happy with what I already have though, best of times.
  19. Forrrest


    Mar 10, 2013
    IIRC gear back in the day was really expensive compared to modern prices. so much that it hasn't even kept its value vs inflation.