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What do u think of carvin amps?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by EKbass69, Apr 10, 2002.

  1. What do u think of carvin amps? Like the 100 watt and 160 watt i might get the 160 watt amp. what do u tihnk its got a god price and i hve heard good about carvin.
  2. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

    Check my post in this thread. In my opinion, the amps are great, the cabs are so so and the combos are pretty good. THat's just me. Anyway, click on this link Click Me and see if this might be what you are looking for.
  3. Three companies I never recommend.


    Carvin because of reliability and quality issues and because they exaggerate their specs.

    Hartke because of reliability and quality issues.

    Crate because, to me, Crate just...sounds...bad.
  4. KB


    Jan 13, 2000
    Chapel Hill, NC
    If you go with Carvin get their R600 or R1000 series amps. They are much better quality and sound really decent if you get used to all their controls.

  5. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

    Agreed on the Carvin.

    Not agreed on the Hartke's. From the ones that I have seen out there, they are pretty reliable overall. Hell, one I used a while ago fell off of my stack and still was 100% functional. Not sure how many other amps could take falling off of a full stack and live.

    Crate, yeah the name sounds like sh!t :D
  6. i dunno...my DCM1000 poweramp has been near tank-like in its reliability so far.
  7. jerry

    jerry Too old for a hiptrip Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 13, 1999
    I have a DCM1500 that I've had for a few years now, and it works great! It's been doing P.A. duty
    for awhile, and it puts out the watts advertised.
  8. IMOH the best sounding bass amp on the market is the one you DON'T own. As soon as you get what you think is the perfect rig just wait a month or so and you'll hear or see another amp that has that perfect sound you've been looking for. That's what makes this bass business so much fun.:):D
  9. jerry

    jerry Too old for a hiptrip Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 13, 1999

    Exactly! The grass is always greener!
  10. Im gonna totally disagree with you on everything for a few reasons...

    Carvin: to me there gear is great, the speaker cabs could use some work, but the heads and the pre amp in my oppion is great, and sounds great (when the user knows how to work it).

    Hartke: 50/50, I know like there heads much, and you may have been refurring to them... However I like there cabs very much, I think the aluminium driver sound really is a good sound if you like it, which I do. And some say the aluminium cones desintagrate, well most cones do after time, my friend has had his 2 x 10 cab for 3 years now, and has transported it in michigan weather (unpredicatble) and it has held up just fine, FROM MY experience there stuff is good.

    Crate: I think people may miss the point at times with there stuff.... as far as small combos, I think crate sounds fine. There heads I do not like in the least. I have a crate BFX-100 and it worked great for band practice and parties and such, it always worked to top performance, and never quit on me, it was actually one of the ore reliable pecies of eqipment I had in the begging, as far as speakers and combos are concerned... so in turn if they work for you great, if not,,, oh well. Even though I don't like there bass heads the guitar blue voodo head sounds good. I personally do not care for there 4 x 10 or 2 x 15 cab, but some might... I think everyone missed the point, I don't think he was talking about a stack, he was talking about a 160 watt combo with a 15" driver in it.

    In conclusion people need to look at all ends of the spectrum, I would seriously like to see how many of the people on forums actually have tried or listen to the stufft they comment about, IM SURE MANY HAVE, although it seems like the ones who have give a more intelligent summary. In end I just want o say that's your oppion and I respect it, but other's may have different oppions respect thos too...

    When I bought my carvin bass, I seen a lot of bad reviews, I didn't think it was gonna be that good of a custom bass, turns out I ended up liking it a lot...

    To answer your question EKbass, I have never tried the carvin combos, I have only heard there power amps, and cabs. ALthough I have heard hartke's, crates, ampegs, and SWR's small combos... and I woudl reccomend these 3 to look into.

    Crate = if your looking for a good amp, for a cheap price. Overall tone is good, although can get cranky and high volumes.

    Hartke= if you like the metal cone sound. the 12" are good combos, however are a little shy in the lows.

    Ampeg=if you want strong sustanble lows, however in my oppion it lacks some in mids.

    SWR=Actually this a good strong cab, I think it was a 2x10 cab, so that might be too big than what your looking for, but it sounded quit nice the best out of all of them,, however it's most costly.

    Carvin=never tried the combos you shoudl talk to someone who has, make sure when you refer to the carvin that you are talking about there combo series.

    Peavy=I have heard good things from there newer combos, however myself I have never had good luck, but my guitarist recently bought a new small one, to practice up in his room, and it seems like a nice amp.

    Marshall:Never really liked em much, I always thought they were like crate only with a weird finish, higher price, and not very good controls,,, although im sure a lot of people started on marshalls.

    In conclusion have a nice day, and play on, and if you want to buy the _______ brand and you like what it has to offer don't let a bunch of message board people discourage you totally, take there point into consideration, and always do what you think is right and what will fit you the best.
  11. SRSiegel

    SRSiegel Guest

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ann Arbor, Michigan
    i will highly reccomend you buy a carvin R600 or R1000. preferable the R1000, as you get an additional 400 watts for 80- bucks. i would also reccomend you avoid the carvin speaker cabinets. they are built extremely tough, but the speakers that are loaded in them are pretty weak. carvin poweramps are also first rate.

    have no experience with the probass line.
    Redline amps are great.
    cabs could use some help, but are better than crate and hartke IMO.

    ive never been a fan of crate... i dont like the way they sound... and they keep falling apart on me and my friends. i never liked the sound of aluminum cones either... so hartke goes out the window as well.
  12. im looking for a combo for band practice and small gigs. and carvin has a nice price and all the guitarest and bass guitarest said they recomend carvin. i have never played carvin though so im really curous if i should buy one. i have played the gallien krueger backline 150 watt combo and i like it verymuch and it was 50 buck more. im not really ready for stacks yet. i just need something to play up with the drummer.
  13. phil_chew


    Mar 22, 2000
    I'm sure most of you guys know that Crate and Ampeg belongs to the same company. What am I trying to say here? I don't know.....go figure.

    Actually, it is amps like Crate and Peavey that are the most reliable in that they can take a lot of abuse, gig after gig.
  14. boogiebass


    Aug 16, 2000
    The Carvin R1000 is a surprisingly good amp from what I've experienced and can usually be had at a great price.
  15. rllefebv


    Oct 17, 2000
    Newberg, Oregon
    True, however replacing the speakers with a better class definitely changes the equation. I replaced the stock speakers in my Carvin RC210 combo, (after they had blown for the third time), with Eminence Kappa's and it's a different animal altogether. Specs aside, this is the combo that I had been hoping for, and sounds fantastic now.

    As to reliability, I've been playing through this amp since the fall of '98 with zero problems other than the speaker. The head has been flawless. I've had it in and out of the combo, played bi-amped, full range, bridged mono, every which way you can imagine. That's over 125 gigs, numerous jams, practices, etc. That's not to say that there aren't lemons out there, but mine's holding up great!

  16. Carvin - Specs say their 18" speakers have 23lb magnets on them. Eminence supplies speakers to Carvin yet no Eminence speaker has a 23lb magnet. Even the top of the line 1000 watt Kilomax Pro has only a 6.8lb magnet.

    Carvin specs say the DCM1000 is stable into a 2ohm load yet I know two bassists and one soundman who have trouble with the DCM1000 going thermal into a 2ohm load.

    Carvin specs say their 15" cab is rated at 600 watts. We have one of these things in our practice studio and I run my Eden 2x10 250 watt cab along with it. One would think the Carvin could keep up...it can't.

    Carvin quality - I know two bassists who recently ordered Carvin cabs, a 4x10 and a 2x10. The guy who ordered the 4x10 discovered that two of the speakers weren't wired up when he got it. The guy with the 2x10 had no speakers wired up when he got it.

    I live 30 miles from a Carvin showroom and I've tried lots of their stuff and I've yet to find anything (except some of their basses) I'd want to take home with me.

    Hartke - Those aluminum speakers blow regularly. Always carry a spare. I don't know how many times I've seen Hartke cabs for sale on ebay with 3 aluminum drivers and one Eminence. Hartke heads sound sterile to me and the switches feel cheesey.

    I've been playing for 36 years and I've owned Fender, Ampeg, Acoustic, Sunn, Gallien Krueger, EV, Jensen, Altec Lansing, JBL, Eden and I know what good gear sounds like and...

  17. rllefebv


    Oct 17, 2000
    Newberg, Oregon
    Then maybe we can agree to disagree :D

  18. chucko58


    Jan 17, 2002
    Silicon Valley, CA, USA
    I paid for all my gear myself. Well, me and MasterCard.
    I'm afraid I have to take issue with some of what Mudbass said.

    Mark Wright of AccuGroove tells me that Eminence will make custom speakers to anyone's specs, if you bring enough money. What you said does not prove that Eminence doesn't make the Carvin 18".

    Most manufacturers' amps are thermally marginal into 2 ohms. A thermal shutdown is better than going up in smoke!

    But I have to confess one reason I own a QSC RMX instead of a Carvin DCM or Redline amp is anecdotal reports that Carvin amps aren't happy driving Acme 4 ohm cabinets bridged (the equivalent of a 2 ohm stereo load). I haven't experienced this myself - and I don't care to, either.

    QSC RMX power amps can be had cheaper than the equivalent Carvin DCM amps, and there are lots of authorized QSC service centers worldwide while Carvin has only one factory repair depot. If you're in the market for a budget power amp, I think the QSC is the way to go.

    You're confusing power handling ratings with efficiency.

    I won't argue with that - spending $$$$ on gear is a very personal choice.

    I would probably have a Redline stack if I hadn't gone the rack rig/Acme route. The Redline amps offer a lot of features for the price. But I was seduced by the Low B-2's portability... and the Acmes' inefficiency in turn led me to a QSC power amp.

    In my rack is a used - and heavily modified - Carvin Pro Bass 15 (PB-15) preamp. It's a decent design and a lot of bang for the buck, but its performance (and thus sound quality) is compromised by cheap parts and curious component choices. Good thing that I know how to solder... and that Carvin will cheerfully mail out schematics for free.

    Carvin doesn't make the world's greatest gear, but it's good value for the money, and they do back it up with decent customer support. Whether it suits your style or needs is a question you'll have to answer for yourself.
  19. It's an easy spec to stretch. Magnet weight is just the magnet. Carvin (and others) also include the back plate, pole piece and return top plate in their spec, making it seem bigger... but it's not. The Carvin 4" voice coil, 18" speaker is basically an Eminence Omega Pro 18, rated by Eminence at 600w (not 800w as rated by Carvin). I'm not saying that Eminence doesn't make the speaker, I'm saying the speaker specs aren't as advertised.

    As for the Carvin 15" I use at practice, it would be easier to compare the effeciency with my Eden cab if Carvin published the complete specs, but they don't. In their advertisements, you know, those things you read [/]before[/i] you buy, Carvin rates the speaker at 600 watts, but in the owner's manual, the thing you get after you buy, it's rated at 500 watts. Go figure.

    The DCM1000 is rated at 500 watts per ch @ 2ohms, but we know they aren't stable into 2 ohms so how are you supposed to get 1000 watts out of it? Maybe on the test bench they're stable, but application in the real world says otherwise. I wouldn't have a bone to pick with them about it if they called the amp the DCM600 which is what it puts out into 4ohms reliably. I just shudder to hear people recommend these things when people like QSC are making much better amps for only a tiny bit more money.
  20. where cazn i find qsc amps and such. perhaps give me a webvsite to go to to look at them
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