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Warm organic solid state ?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by doublestop, Oct 9, 2005.

  1. Hello, I've been playing guitar for many many years, bass for only 1 year. So, sorry for this 'noob' question....

    I have a vintage Fender Bassman-type all tube basshead. I love its warm organic sound of tubes. The bloom, that juicy sound, with just enough 'precision' and definition.

    My amp is a 2xEL34 amp (say 40 Watts), so I need something more powerfull for rehearsals and gigs.

    I have only played some solid state amps in stores, but still I don't have a good impression.

    I don't like the Trace Elliot that is in our rehearsal room. I did like (very much) the sound of Gary Willis Aguilar amp, which is tight (much tighter than my bassman) but still very warm and bass-like (duh)

    My questions are:

    * is it possible to have a warm organic sound out of a solid state amp? If not, I will look after a bigger all tube head (but I'd prefer SS for weight reasons)

    * is it necessay to have a tube pre-amp in order to get "that" sound

    * what "warm" SS (or Class D) amps would you recommend?

    Sorry for asking such dumb questions........thanks for all answers!

  2. Mr_Dave


    Mar 11, 2005
    Melbourne, Australia
    Employee - Basscentre Melbourne
    although i have never played one, people rave about the thunderfunk.


    there is heaps of info on here about them if you use the search

    tommix did a nice comparison of the thunderfunk and the db750 which was very favourable.

    many people love them, some don't so much but people often say that they are one of the most tubey sounding little heads.

    also, not sure if www.basstasters.com is back up but they have clips of the thunderfunk. it's interesting comparing it to the aguilar clips. and check out the clips of the thunderfunk with the "timbre" control turned down. amazing!

    cheers. hope this is on the right track for you.
  3. Woodboy


    Jun 9, 2003
    St. Louis, MO
    I have owned an Eden WT-550 for about 1 1/2 years and have no GAS for another amp. As most of you know, it has one tube in the preamp and the rest is solid state. You can dial in any type of tone you want and it is plenty powerful.
  4. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    yes it's possible.

    IMO, tubes are it for EG. They still haven't made a solid state EG amp that sounds right (to me)

    However, the bass world is pretty divided. Tube preamps and solid state preamps all have radically different tones, and there are planty of "chilly" tube preamps and "warm" solid state ones. As far as power sections go, tubes make a much bigger difference. No SS amp is going to dupe the sound of a tube power section. However, that's not always a bad thing. With the exception of certin tones, bass is not as dependent as EG on a tube power section for the tone. In most cases, the sound of the preamp itself (tube or SS) is exactly what the Dr ordered, and a quality SS power section just makes it louder. Many cats prefer the sound of SS power sections on the bass as well. For a reality check, think on this. In most recordings and concert situations, the EG sound is from a miked amp. The bass sound is from a direct box straight into the recorder or board. No power tubes, no speakers.
  5. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD
    Not pure solid state, but the Yorkville XS400H & XS800H heads are very warm hybrid heads. So are Ashdowns, but they're much more pricey. (and closer to Trace, so you might not like them).

    However, if you want an all tube amp that doesn't weigh too much, the Traynor YBA200 is $579 at rockcityguitars.com, and is 200 watts of tube goodness and only 41 lbs:

    Factor in a few extra bucks to replace the mediocre Sovtek preamp tubes, and you'll have a killer tone machine.
  6. bmc


    Nov 15, 2003
    Nemesis combos
  7. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD
    Also, there's the Ampeg B-100R Combo which is very organic, but may not be enough for your situation.

    Holy crap, I just recommended an Ampeg!!! :eek::p
  8. The Eden Time Traveler does it for me. YMMV
  9. James Hart

    James Hart

    Feb 1, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: see profile
    what the....

    I just felt a deep chill and I SWEAR I just saw a flock of pigs flying south :eek:


    Warm SS stuff.... plenty out there, I'd hit a shop and try everything. Judge by your ear not the name.
  10. I second the Thunderfunk. It is the sweetest SS amp I have ever heard. I also think the Eden 550 is a good comparative amp BUT overall, I prefer the TFunk......The 750 is my second favorite amp of all time and while it is a Hybrid with tubes in the pre and a MOSFET output stage, it is one GREAT amp. Still use the TFunk at every gig. I lost my Tfunk and 750 in a fire (among a lot of other stuff) and I replaced the Tfunk almost immediately. I don't think I am going to replace the 750....that is about the best endorsement I can give you.....


  11. lo-freq

    lo-freq aka UFO

    Jan 19, 2003
    DFW, Texas
    Warmest I've heard are the Ashdown ABM EVO II heads.
    Followed by Mesa Boogie M-2000 (currently discontinued), Thunderfunk, Aguilar DB750, Ampeg, & Eden heads.

    If you wanted to go preamp + power amp: Ashdown, Kern, Alembic, Ampeg, & Aguilar -- all these are tube preamps.

    Then pick a decent power amp.
  12. Plain Old Me

    Plain Old Me

    Dec 14, 2004
    The only amps that aren't all tube which can get close to tube warmpth (in my ears) are the Eden WT 800, the DB 750, Ashdown EVO, and the TF. There are others which have tube pres and get somewhat warm, but these are the ones that come really close.