What are the best amps for metal??

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by dontbesobassist, Dec 6, 2005.

  1. I'm looking for a good solid cab and head that really backs me up on the stage wen im playing metal. I need something that provides plenty of bottom end when i need it but has decent EQ settings so that I can get a good sound from it through a Boss GT6B bass effects pedal. All replies are kindly appreciated.
    b :bassist: :confused:
  2. hmm.. it depents on witch sound you're after. Metal sounds can de different. It could be very clean and mid scooped, that's what a lot of Nu metal bassists in my area love...or it could be a more growling, mids dominated sound.
    I play in a progressive death metal group and I love my Mesa/Boogie Bass 400+ all tube head - SWR Goliath III (4x10) cab - GT 6 B combination, although I could think of a better, more metal friendly cab to run the Mesa through!
    My sound is full of low mids, I also like distorted tones, but IMO all of them on the GT6B are crappy, so I will soon be getting a single distortion pedal.
    I split my bass signal. One signal split goes clean to the first input of the Mesa. The other signal split goes trough the GT6B and is modelled by an Ampeg SVT head and cab. So I have the original Mesa bass 400+ sound mixed with the modeled sound of a SVT witch sounds really nice, I think

    greets :)
  3. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 20, 2004
    Madison WI
    HPF Technology LLC
    The GK MB150E combo amp features all-metal construction :)
  4. thanks guys.thats deffo a gud start. yeh im afta sumthing quite bass heavy but can growl also. my newly formed metal band are influenced by Arch Enemy, Trivium, Bullet for my Valentine etc and although their bass have nothing special Im after something that can give me a similar sound. I would use be looking at using overdrive and distortion with it. yeh i have done some research on the GKs. Thanks alot for all your help.if anyone can help me more please add my msn account [email protected]
    all replies are greatly appreciated as always
  5. tallboybass

    tallboybass Supporting Member

    Feb 25, 2003
    Tulsa, Oklahoma
    I think he's looking for something with progressive death metal construction. ;)
  6. Trevorus


    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    gk2001. Can't get any better than that. My 1001 has been indestructible. And very loud. I can get anything I want out of it, so I really recommend it to everyone./
  7. georgestrings

    georgestrings Inactive

    Nov 5, 2005
    I do OK with my Peavey Mark VIII, and play a fair amount of metal... It's 600 watts @ 2 ohms, 450 @ 4 - and has proven itself to be reliable... I typically go for a Pantera-like bass tone, BTW - and have been getting it with two 115s(Black Widows)... I've got a 410TXF cab coming, though - it'll be interesting to see what it brings to the table...

    - georgestrings
  8. cetera


    Apr 29, 2004
    Surrey, England
    Endorsing Artist: Spector Basses & Cort Basses
    Tech21 Landmark 600..... nothing comes close.... :smug:
  9. chaosMK


    May 26, 2005
    Albuquerque, NM
    Too much hip thrust
    I play in a progressive alternative/metal band and like a sound that is ideal for real heavy music.

    I currently use a Mesa Bass 400 into a Mesa Powerhouse 4x10 and an Avatar 2x10 pro. I was using a Goliath III in the place of the Avatar for a while, but wanted more lows/low mids bump. This setup is a little bit warm sounding for metal (but sounds great). Aggressive playing produces more aggressive almost s/s sounding tones. I boost mids, keep the treble a dash lower, run the bass around half or a dash less, frown EQ (mind you, this amp has kind of crazy settings... I wouldnt use this on any other amp)-- and cut through like crazy. For a more scooped and bottom heavy sound, I turn on my Sansamp BDDI.

    To be honest, I think almost any head with a lot of power going into good rock/metal cabinets (for example, not SWR Goliath) with a Sansamp (or similar, like Hartke VXL) will get the job done beautifully.
  10. Daytona955i


    Feb 17, 2005
    Albany, NY
    How much money can you spend? I love the sound of Mesa 400+ and Ampeg SVT's through either an 8x10 or a 4x10, 1x15 set up like the Mesa Powerhouse 1000, it's a 3/4 stack height with a full stack of speakers (1x15 with a a 10 in each corner). But that stuff isn't cheap.

    However you can do well without spending that much money also, it all depends on how much you feel like spending. I spent about $1000 on a good used rig that's pretty eff'n loud. I play an Ampeg B4r (1000 watts bridged) through a 4x10, 1x15 stack.
  11. Fealach

    Fealach Guest

    Apr 23, 2003
    Gone to a better place
  12. Tash


    Feb 13, 2005
    Bel Air Maryland
    I love my rig: Mesa MPulse + Powerhouse 1000. Very powerful EQ and tons of headroom let me get a very powerful tone with a rich bottom and lots of punch. I like the footswitchable EQ, comp and dual volume channels as well, I find them all very useful since I don't like to drag around extra pedals or outboard gear. There's also an effects loop that is footswitchable and has a built in wet/dry blend control, a common feature on processors but not something I've ever seen on an amp effects loop.

    My rig really brings out the best elements of my bass' sound and gets me exactly what I want tonally. For me Spector+Mesa="The Sound"TM.
  13. jgrotto


    Nov 29, 2005
    In my opinion, I find much more difficulty finding certain basses that sound "metal" as opposed to amps that sound metal. Personally, I play Ampeg SVT 410 HLF cabs and an Ampeg head (soon to be an Ampeg tube head). I've also played Hartke and SWR and with all these amps I've been able to get a "metal" sound as long as they're loud enough in the mix and as long as I had the right bass. But this is all a matter of taste, anyways. For instance Steve Harris from Iron Maiden plays a p-bass which is a huge component of Maiden's sound. And it sounds great. But I've tried p-basses in my band(s) and I think it sounds downright ungodly (and not in a cool satan metal way) no matter what amp I play it through. Traditionally, Ampeg has been a great way to go for rock. And most metal bands we've played with have Ampeg SVTs or Pros, Mesa Boogie 400s, and GKs. Maybe right down the features you need and see which pieces from these manufacturers fit the bill.

    Also, have you checked the bands' you like websites? Most metal dorks like myself are proud of their gear and want the world to know about it. Or just google a bass player's name with the word "gear" next to it.
  14. Joe P

    Joe P

    Jul 15, 2004
    Milwaukee, WI
    My Brother plays Metal bass (most recently with Skull Cap, out of Pheonix, a couple years ago). He's mainly a guitarist, I think, actually, but he does play Metal bass 'like a bassist should'. Once he discovered Trace Elliot, he says he'd never use anything else. I should mention that he also uses the BDDI pedal (did I 'spell' that right?) with it - full-time, I believe.

    I'd think GK would be an excellent choice too - that's my choice, but I don't play Metal (right now, anyway).

  15. chaosMK


    May 26, 2005
    Albuquerque, NM
    Too much hip thrust
    One of my favorite thrash metal bands locally has a bassist using a Trace Elliot 2x15 with a Peavey head. Somehow that rig manages to cut through two huge stacks (one a Peavey XXX with 2 4x12's, other a Johnson 2x12 with a 4x12 extension). Ive never used Trace gear but I was impressed.
  16. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    Start by going to an Ampeg dealer and playing a *tube* SVT (Classic, SVT-II Pro) into a Classic 810 cabinet. If that will do the job, then worry about how to pay for it. It's still the industry standard for loud rock bass, metal included.

    If you find the SVT doesn't cut it, then you're off on a long and expensive quest my friend!!
  17. My favorite heads for metal:
    Mesa 400/400+
    Ampeg SVT-II, -2 Pro, or true vintage
    Fender Bassman Pro 300

    My favorite cabs:
    Bergantino 610
    Bergantino 215
    Bergantino 425
    (Obviously I love Bergantino)
    Aguilar 412
    Mesa Powerhouse 1000

    I use a GT-6B through a Mesa 400+ into a Bergie 610. It gets tons of low end, and it just sounds great!
  18. brilliant guys thanks so much for all you suggestions. cheers