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What's wrong with newer Peavey combos?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by andruca, Jul 14, 2004.

  1. andruca


    Mar 31, 2004
    Madrid (Spain)
    I have an early 80's Peavey TKO-80 (75 watt 15" Scorpion speaker + a piezo horn I added to it) that I use for small gigs. Recently my band shared a small pub gig with another band who's bassist decided to bring his combo so we both used it. It was a 150W brand new Peavey TNT (15" speaker too). The thing is that it didn't have the power my old TKO has. I used both pre and master at 12 o'clock and it made a horrible speaker distortion. I had this same problem with another Peavey combo (modern series, not the old good green and black ones). The output level on my pedalboard and bass are the same I use either with my TKO and with a Hartke stack I also own. I could never get my old TKO to distort (and, believe me, in ten years since I bought it -used- I sometimes did extreme things with it). So, my questions are; are newer Peavey combos' speakers under-dimentioned for the amp's output? Does it have something to do with the stupid un-bypasseable limiter modern Peavey combos have (that older ones didn't have)? How is it possible that my old TKO-80 sounds WAY LOUDER than modern 150W TNTs? Thanks so much for your help...

  2. Hmmm...maybe you played one that was not functioning properly. I have a TNT115 that is from the newetst series and it is the loudest (and cleanest) combo I've ever used in the sub $500 range. And I think the tone is MUCH better in the new series then the old ones. Regardless, if I were playing in a loud rock band I'd never use it for gigging. It works great with my blues band however.
  3. i donno, i think old peavey's just have this vibe to them. i got a tko65 that overpowers guitar amps up to 80 watts or more
  4. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    How old are you talking about?

    Peavey has been putting undefeatable limiters in their combos since about 1980.
  5. bassmike1


    Apr 9, 2004
    Bought a new Combo 300 for a touring hotel band back circa 90. Sorry-no power thanks to the compressor (which doesn't compress but limits power) and total lack of tone. Lasted for about 6 mos. The amp that is. Owned a Series 200 head and 315 "coffin" when I was in highschool. Same lack of power and tone. I'm FROM Meridian Ms. and I wouldn't suggest any Peavy Bass rig. Sorry-you grow up and buy "big-boy stuff". Or stick with Ibanez/Peavey combinations and suffer eternal dumasity and obscurity. Sorry Ibanez/Peavey owners-just one opinion after 30 years of playing out/recording for money.
  6. Edwcdc

    Edwcdc I call shotgun!

    Jul 21, 2003
    Columbia MD USA
    Wow! That might piss off a couple of Peavey users. Get over yourself! I have to say that I have a Combo300 that is from the 80's. That amp has been with me through hell and back and never ever ever ever once gave me a problem. I have since moved on to bigger and better gear but I would never sell my old 300.
    Dumasity and obscurity? And you are?
  7. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Supporting Member


    When my 'big-boy' Eden Metro got stolen, I replaced it with a Peavey BAM210. Sounds better, has more volume, and handles the low B a lot better than my Eden ever did. I miss the Eden. It would have made a great backup for the BAM.

    I had a TNT 130 for 20 years. For the first 12 years of my gigging life, it was my rig. Insanely loud for 130 watts. Played many an outdoor show without PA support with that amp. It refused to die. I finally sold it to another Talkbasser last year for $100. Last I heard, he cleaned it up, and it is still going strong.
  8. andruca


    Mar 31, 2004
    Madrid (Spain)
    I'm not complaining about older stuff neither about the BAM series combos (I tested one and I liked it a lot). My old TKO doesn't have any sort of limiter and older TNTs I've used also didn't. Neither had an old Mark III head I had (by the way, an absolutely great amp which didn't do any distortion ****) before I moved to my current Hartke stack. There's no problem with the old black&green Peaveys. The problem I see is with new releases of TKOs and TNTs (the black&red ones). They're quite alike in features, except for the undefeatable limiter (not quite a compressor at all) and also because the speaker cannot handle the head's power. As I read what Edwcdc told us in the first reply to my post I went to a local shop just to check it out (because I had the same problem with 2 different new series TNT combos). The speaker in the TNT at the shop couldn't stand power beyond 1/2 pre and 1/2 post, so I assume this is endemic in newer TNT combos. And the limiter light was almost always on at such level! The speaker didn't burn, ok, but it sounded like it was being severely over powered. I lowered down the pre and raised the post volume gradually to check out if there was any kind of amp overdrive, but the speaker continued to brbrbrbrrrrrrrrr... and I can distinguish between pre/amp distortion and speaker struggle and this was definitely the speaker begging for mercy. At the distorting point the amp was not loud at all. If I had a drummer by my side, I surely would have had to turn it up. I was planning to upgrade to a new TNT, but... I'll stick with my good old TKO-80 and save a year or so for my dream combo amp... THE ROLAND DB-900!!!

    Tanks so much for your help and opinions...

    (100% anti-vintage)
  9. andruca


    Mar 31, 2004
    Madrid (Spain)
    When I said Edwcdc's comments I meant Woofenstein's comments. Sorry for that...

  10. Beammeup


    Oct 7, 2002
    My first Amp ever was a Peavey TNT 115, with a 15" Black Widow Speaker.

    It had some of the same problems as you mention. A lack of power. When I tried to push the volume a little bit more that usually, the normal respone was "distortion".

    I don't know if this problem could have been related to the transistors inside?

    It served me well for ca. 1½ year in my young days :D
  11. Edwcdc

    Edwcdc I call shotgun!

    Jul 21, 2003
    Columbia MD USA
    I think If I would have cranked my Combo300 up too much I could have destroyed the speaker. :D I guess all the extra power was meant to drive an external cab. That's the way I ran it in a lot of places. I also put it up on a stand as close to me as possible and let the PA do all the work.
  12. Edwcdc

    Edwcdc I call shotgun!

    Jul 21, 2003
    Columbia MD USA
    No problem :)
  13. I've got a 2003 Peavey Combo115, the largest in that range.

    It does seem underpowered, I must say, but that's only because I play with scooped mids. If I boost the mid lows you can get a ton of power from it - whatever driver is in it (The manual claims it's an Eminence) is much more efficient in the 200hz range than anywhere else.

    I've got a 2x10 on top of mine, pushing 300w. It's as loud as 300w could be, which isn't enough as I would like, but is fine for most gigs. The preamp is excellent, and sounds great through a PA or recorded.

    I think the newer Peavey combos are all pretty damn good, especially for the price. The Microbass is the only small bass amp around, IMHO. All other bass amps that size don't handle bass anywhere near as well.

    As for the BAM combos, they're astonishing, never heard anything quite so loud and high quality from a box so small. If I had the choice, I'd happily swap my combo 115 for a BAM Head.

    "Sorry-you grow up and buy "big-boy stuff". Or stick with Ibanez/Peavey combinations and suffer eternal dumasity and obscurity."

    Check on the Peavey Artists website. There are a helluva lot of professional bands that use Peavey gear.

    As for the distortion problem, even with my pre and post gains on 3 o'clock and the red light constantly on, I've never had distortion. The DDT Limiter stops it.

    At the end of the day, the Peavey "Tour" combos are aimed at new players or those that can't afford the higher quality stuff. For the price they're excellent amps, if you want something with better tone or more power, you upgrade.