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What do you think about Gallien-Krueger?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by FleaisGod, May 16, 2001.

  1. FleaisGod

    FleaisGod Guest

    Jun 18, 2000
    Atlanta, GA
    Whatsup guys/gals,
    I had my eyes on an ampeg SVT3-pro, to push 4x10's for my band, but at a recent gig i played through a GK head and it sounded great( im almost positive it was the 800RB model) Now im stuck on which one to get. Any suggestions?


    PS- Please respond if you have actually played through one of these heads!
  2. mchildree

    mchildree Supporting Member

    Sep 4, 2000
    I had one of the first 400RB models to hit the market and it was super reliable and easy to get a good tone. I've had 2 different 800RBs blow up on me, and also 2 of the little bass combos in the steel box...200MB(?). I've heard from more than one player that GK suffers from abysmal reliability and customer service nowadays. I'd not buy one. But that's just MY experience.
  3. captainpabst


    Mar 18, 2001
    i've heard stories on here about bad GK reliability. some time ago i was at mars music, and the salesman pulled out a brand new 400rb to put on the floor because they didn't have one out and somebody wanted to try one. well, when they plugged it in, the tone was all fuzzy/noisy - it was totally screwed. i didn't think that was too cool. but then he got out another one, and it was fine. other than that, all the GK's i've played (only in stores) have been great. i love the tone, and i almost bought a GK setup, but opted for an swr bass 750 and henry 8x8. more $, but when i heard that setup, well, i liked it better than anything i'd ever heard so i bought it.

    i'd ignore the rumored bad reliability (if you buy from somewhere with a 45 day guarantee - you'll be ok - return it if it's messed up, but it'll probably be fine), and try to A/B a GK next to an ampeg in a store and follow your ears.
  4. I've played both, and I prefer the GK. I have a GK 800RB, and it's very simple to dial up a good sound. The Ampeg does'nt have the punch, IMO. In my experience in instrument retail, I see amps come in all the time for repair, and the GK's are one brand we dont see many of. SWR, Marshall, and Mesa Boogie seem to be predominant in the repair dept, but not GK.
  5. mchildree

    mchildree Supporting Member

    Sep 4, 2000
    Maybe you should dig up The Bottom Line archives...there are several pro electronics repair guys and luthiers that hang out there. I've seen on more than one occasion where one of them said that GK and Hartke were the vast majority of what they get in for repair. I forgot to mention, too, that both of the 200MBs I had were bad right out of the box. The first was D.O.A....the other made a VERY loud vacuum-cleaner type noise when plugged in. Oddly enough, it didn't start until midway into the break on our first set at the first gig I used it with...it was DI'ed to the PA, and something in the on-board chorus feature started going WHOOOO-WHOOOO-WHOOOO. I had to run up in front of a packed house and fiddle with it until it stopped. I suffered years of ribbing over that one...
  6. nunk6


    Jul 29, 2000
    i use a gk 400 to push a 4X10 and sometimes a 15 also, good price pushes great volume, i was slow in chosing it because i thought id need more volume playing a metal band for instance; but i was wrong!
    as for reliability ive used it several times in poor conditions and its never failed; take care of it it and it should be more than reliable
  7. pbassfreak


    May 2, 2001
    long beach
    i use an 800rb..id say 90 percent of the time its great..but sometimes for some reason it distorts real bad..had it serviced at a gk place and it happened again...im not sure why ,the techs cant tell me either..last option im changing the jack..
    if that doesnt work im throwing away..if not for that its a great amp
  8. TCollins


    Apr 4, 2000
    I owned a GK 2000RB for about a year. When it worked right, it was one of the best bass heads I ever played through...too bad it didn't keep working, it would die on me in the middle of songs. I sent it back to GK and they forever to get it back (about 3 months). When I got it back, it worked great for about 6 weeks...then it died again...DUMPED IT!!! If this amp was working up to snuff, I would still have it. No way am I going to wait another 3 months for ANY amp!
  9. Well, FleaIsGod, you know Flea uses GK amps?
  10. Oh yeah, so do I. I've had the miracle GKMB150E for 10 years now. It does have its unfixable reliability problems. But it sounded good enough, and worked well enough that in the last year I bough a GK 400RBIII. So far, same great sound and works perfectly.
  11. gfab333


    Mar 22, 2000
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    I have owned the following models over the years since 1976:


    They all sound great and were very reliable. They never needed servicing. The 800RB has been with me for over 10 years. Once, it got dropped by a bandmate - it suffered a 1/4 dent, but always worked fine without needing service.

    My new 1001RB is a really great amp with lots of power and a variety of available tonal variations. very compact too.

    Just my two cents. I've read alot about crappy GK quality, but I guess I've been lucky.
  12. Rock City

    Rock City

    Apr 8, 2001
    Hey PBASSFREAK.........The distorting problem you have is probably the effects loop jacks! The solution is to plug a patch cable between send and return always!!!!!! I have had several G.K.'s over the years and they all suffered from this problem.
  13. winston

    winston Supporting Member

    May 2, 2000
    Berkeley, CA
    Right-o, Gibson Geek. I had a 400RB that had the same intermittent distortion problem and the culprit was found to be the FX jacks. I had a 200 MB which worked great for me until I made the COLOSSALLY STUPID decision to check it through airline baggage in its padded bag. Never worked right after that-it started making this weird crackling sound (of course it always stopped when I took it to the repair shop). Several months later the amp decided to burn up the speaker and incinerate itself in the process. I literally had to throw the whole thing into the garbage. It was pitiful.
    I've always liked the GK sound-it was easy for me to get a good tone with any bass and while most people use the contour circuit I preferred to bypass it for a gruff, midrangey sound. I think the extra gain of the boost circuit give the amps a unique sound and feel. Though I've heard about the reliability problems I'd definitely check them out if I was shopping for an amp.
  14. CamMcIntyre


    Jun 6, 2000
    I'm not sure if i've tried that ampeg head yet. I have tried the SVTCL & 1 other SVT-both times through the 8X10 then later through a 2X15. 8X10 w/either head had great sound to me-lots of lows, i was practically drooling in the store :D . The ampegs sound the best outta all the rigs i've tried [to me]-Hartke, Peavy, SWR, & a GK/Tube Works combo. Try to A/B them together to get a more true representation of what you're comparing. thats all
  15. penstock


    Aug 10, 2000
    I have a 400RB head that I bought used and I love it. It is ~7 years old and is still going strong. The guy that had it before me never needed service and I haven't either, and when it does finally go, I'll probably get another one.
  16. spyde223


    Apr 11, 2000
    Dumas, Texas
    i tried a small gk combo in a store and when i wasn't playing it had a really annoying buzz sound.
  17. ashton


    Jan 4, 2001
    well today i tried GK and a MB and they both were good, a little hum when u didnt play for about 20seconds but if you turned the vol on your bass down it stopped.
    have fun
  18. FleaisGod

    FleaisGod Guest

    Jun 18, 2000
    Atlanta, GA
    Well, I went to mars today, and played 4x10's through a GK and an ampeg, and I personally liked the GK better, and it's a 100 bucks cheaper. Thanks for your input!

    P.S.- Got any ideas on what cab to get? (around 500 - 600 dollars and 4x10's?)
  19. Go for a used SWR 4x10. Great sound, bullet-proof, easier and lighter to lug around than the new GK 4x10 too. The Ampeg Classic 4x10 is pretty good also.
  20. FleaisGod

    FleaisGod Guest

    Jun 18, 2000
    Atlanta, GA
    Yea, I was leaning towards either Ampeg or SWR, but the SWR is a LOT more expensive, but i might look into used gear.

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