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What are good amps for bar gigs?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Twenty2AcaciaAv, Aug 7, 2012.

  1. Twenty2AcaciaAv


    Feb 17, 2011
    What is a good amp for bar gigs? My band also plays one or two festivals a year, but they are small. I'm looking to spend no more than $1,100. I currently use an acoustic 200h with an acoustic 115 cab.
  2. Stumbo

    Stumbo Wherever you go, there you are. Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 11, 2008
    Cali Intergalactic Mind Space - always on the edge
    Song Surgeon slow downer software- full 4 hour demo
  3. Slap a 2x10 atop that 15, and you should be OK, provided you do not have to compete with a Marshall, without PA support. You do not provide enough info on what you are playing with, in terms of your band's equipment. The best amp for a bar gig is the one that you can haul easily enough, and can allow you some headroom, within your situation. I don't even bring the heavy artillery for bar gigs with my main band, because we have such a huge-sounding PA. A Genz Shuttle 3.0, with a 1x12T cab on an angle stand gives me 300w in my personal area, and allows a lot of FOH control...and I can use a compact car, to get to gigs.
  4. Very much disagree. The only cab I would pair with the OP's existing, is an identical matching one.
  5. phillybass101


    Jan 12, 2011
    Artist, Trickfish Amplification Bartolini Emerging Artist, MTD Kingston Emerging Artist. Artist, Tsunami Cables
    IMO the ampeg portflex 500. 500 watts for like $399. Perfect bar amp. cheap enough to replace if destroyed by beer. and 500 watts. get a nice 4x10 and you'll be in the mix. They also make a portoflex 4x10 cab for cheap.
  6. scottbass

    scottbass Bass lines like a big, funky giant

    Jul 13, 2004
    Southern MN
    Go modular. Buy another cab - I would buy another 115 - and a power amp, like a Crown Drivecore XLS1000. The rig you have now is OK for smaller gigs. When you need more horsepower, run the preamp output of your acoustic into the Crown, parallel the inputs and drive both cabs.

    You can get another Acoustic B115 cab for about $200 (used), and the Crown power amp will cost you $300 or less (new).

    There you have it. Great power and great flexibility for $500. Want a different cab? Then get a 2x10 or a 2x12 instead of another 1x15. Want a different and/or better preamp? Get a rack-mount Sansamp RBI or even a used Ampeg SVP-PRO and a 3- or 4-space rack case for the preamp and power amp. You'll still be under your $1100 budget.
  7. Twenty2AcaciaAv


    Feb 17, 2011
    Being able to hear it has rarely ever been an issue. My Fender J-bass sounds good with it but my Schecter Stilleto custom, not so much.
  8. Russell L

    Russell L

    Mar 5, 2011
    Cayce, SC
    Little Mark III head works for me.
  9. Well go try some new amps. Personally I think you might enjoy a PF-500 and two of the new PF115hlf cabs.
  10. ransombass


    Dec 16, 2008
    Tulsa, Ok
  11. ransombass


    Dec 16, 2008
    Tulsa, Ok
    Again +1

  12. So, you are disagreeing with the fundmental thrust of my original post, which is as follows:

    You were both oblivious to the obvious.
  13. mikezimmerman

    mikezimmerman Supporting Member

    Apr 29, 2001
    Omaha, Nebraska
    No, he's disagreeing with your suggestion of getting a 210 to go with the OP's existing 115 cabinet, and recommending getting another 115 instead. That seems pretty obvious based on the quote, which actually says specifically what it is he's disagreeing with.
  14. We still do not know what OP is contending with, in his band. We just know that his passive bass sounds OK to him, and his active one does not.

    To me, 200w through a pair of 15's is a waste of drivers. You'll push most of your sound beyond where you are, thus perhaps not being able to hear yourself well. Having the 2x10 atop the 115 provides a fuller sound, and give both near and far projection.

    The fundamental thrust is thus still as quoted in my second post, and allows for the "YMMV" factor.
  15. Furthermore, we do not even know what style of music is involved. A pair of 15's might be just fine for 1-5 country work, but maybe not so much, with other genres. There is quite an awful lot of assumptivness in this thread, and I was also guilty of it, to a degree, in my 1st post.
  16. The majority of this is erroneous. Driver size has little to nothing to do with frequency response. In fact a 115 has better dispersion than a horizontal 210.
  17. FanOfAlice


    Nov 8, 2006
    It amazes me that these speaker size myths still have legs here on TB. The topic has been discussed thoroughly several times. I thought it was common knowledge now that matched speaker/cab stacks are typically superior and the safe bet. I know I am not the only one that feels this way.

    A quick search provided this.

  18. f.c.geil


    May 12, 2011
    These posts show a complete lack of understanding of how sound works, and are completely erroneous at best.
  19. Jools4001

    Jools4001 Supporting Member

  20. bombpop14


    Apr 10, 2010
    Irvine, California USA
    Endorsing Artist Ampeg Amps
    One 4x10 (ampeg, mesa, gk, etc.) and a 500 watt head can handle almost any situation. I like my ampeg 4x10HE and GK MB500. Works well under most any conditions.

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