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What's Wrong with this? ampeg VS. EA/aguilar

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by thehurlatron, Jan 17, 2006.

  1. I was wondering what went wrong!

    DISCLAIMER:I like Ampeg gear and am not getting down on it it any way.

    I was asked to sit in with a band the other day for a quick 8 song gig. A band that went on before us bass player had a Ampeg 410HLF?ELF?(410 with 3 round ports on bottom)
    and a ampeg "something" 5. He filled the 30'X100' echo filled room with punchy loud bass.(using a MTD kingston 5)
    I brought my Aguilar DB750 and a Euphonic Audio VL-210 with a warwick streamer STII 5'er, and I sounded like crap. I didn't seem to fill the room with the sound he had. No punch, and not near the volume he had.

    Is this a matter of just # of speakers and power going to them, or is his set up more supurb than mine.
    This isn't a gear envy thing, I'm just curous how and why this happened.

    I use very little eq onboard (just a little bass boost) and the amp was set a little bass boost, a hair of trebble and a handfull of mids.
  2. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Bettendorf, IA USA
    I have a 410 HLF. It is a nice cabinet. It sounds great. They are mostly a run of the mill 410 though. Tuned a little lower than other Ampeg stuff, but otherwise nothing special. It's a 500W RMS cab, and it's not known to be a particularly efficient cabinet. It does have a nice, rich bottom without having to force it with EQ. But, I would be surprised if it was capable of noticably more volume than your EA. I know one of my 210XLTs can pretty much keep up with it.

    Ampeg rigs do have a nice little low-mid grit that fills space nicely and tend to cut through fairly well.

    I would guess that is was an EQ thing or maybe just a perception thing. The other guy always seems to sound better. :)
  3. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL
    aint that the truth... ;)

    but yea, there are sooo many factors. again, what sounds great at home and at rehearsal can be totally different on gig. thus, you have to compensate.

    how "different" was your sound? what do you mean by crappy compard to his? gotta go into a bit more detail.

    and the HLF is probably the only cab from ampeg i'd actually own. not too shabby.
  4. KJung

    KJung Supporting Member

    When I had a VL210, I found the sound to be rather bottom heavy with a lack of upper mid and high end definition (I was using a combination of Walter Woods and Eden heads). When I played the DB750, while it has amazing volume, I also found the low end a little difficult to control (although I have only 'music store' experience with the 750). I would think that in a somewhat boomy room, a more mid-punchy rig like the Ampeg might sound clearer and punchier than the somewhat unusual (IMO) and probably bottom heavy-sounding combination of a VL and a 750.

    However, per Joker's comments.. some rigs sound better in some rooms versus others... unless you are generally unhappy with your rig across many playing situations, I wouldn't worry about it too much:) However, you owe it to yourself to try that 750 with a 'tighter' sounding cab... Berg, Epi, Schroeder... you might really dig the tighter low end and extended highs, and the increase in efficiency will be an added bonus.
  5. What I mean by "he sounded better". Was that In all places in the room he was punchy. It hit you in the chest every time he hit a note. You could hear me fine, but not as pronounced and chest pounding. And he was competing with a marshall 1/2 stack and a accustic through the PA.

    Maybe I'm crazy and I sounded just as full and defined.
    It's just that my best guess was that Aguilar and EA paired together would be a better sounding, more punchy and more of a defined sound than the "run of the mill" ampeg rig.
  6. KJung

    KJung Supporting Member

    Unfortunately, even good gear can sound pretty average when 'mismatched'. Also, so much of it is technique... it's amazing how different players sound totally different out of the same rig, same bass, same EQ settings.
  7. Of the Schroeder and Bergantino boxes, what would you recommend? (keeping in mind that I think the VL-210 was too "small" sounding)
  8. KJung

    KJung Supporting Member

    I'm going to let the Ag750 guys chime in, since I don't have a lot of experience with that head. My gut feel is, the Schroeder1212/Ag750 is a great combination. It's the one that Jorg himself uses for his larger gigs. The 1212 is smaller than the VL210 and lighter, and MUCH more efficient (i.e., louder per watt). The 1212's low end is very tight (some would say not enough low end rumble)... but... that tightness in the low end...emphasizing the low mids, seems to be a very good match for the 750... which, again in my limited experience, can get almost too big and wide in the lows.

    I know from other TBers that the 750 with the BergNV cabs (the ones that are sealed and are meant to cop that classic SVT type vibe) would sound awesome if you were after classic rock tones.

    Anway, that 1212 seems like it might be a very good match for the 750... small, punchy, but loud as heck!

    I'm sure some 750er's will chime in.

    Good luck.
  9. deaf pea

    deaf pea

    Mar 24, 2005
    Cuernavaca 1 hr S Mexico City
    Seymour Duncan/Basslines SMB-5A Endorsing Artist
    If the cab had 3 round ports at the bottom, it's a PR410HLF. A VERY serious beast. LOTS of clean low end. 600 watts RMS. NOT really very efficient (96dB spl) but that SVT-5PRO puts out 1000 watts, mono-bridged! I don't doubt that it sounded kick-ass . . . that PR410HLF is easily MORE than DOUBLE your 2x10 cab (more like 2 1/2 or 3 times what you've got).

    Another thought; on your set-up, you're adding lows (with only a 2x10). That (adding low eq) can rob a lot of power without a lot of results to show for it.

    Don't feel bad . . . I think you'll always come out 2nd best (sound-wise) against that particular Ampeg set-up (with what you've got).

    maybe it's time for a cabinet up-grade?

    Also, +100 on Kjung's comment "Also, so much of it is technique... it's amazing how different players sound totally different out of the same rig, same bass, same EQ settings."
  10. fretlessrock

    fretlessrock Supporting Member

    Aug 8, 2002
    +1 on so much being in the other guy's hands.
    +1 on other player's rigs sounding better
    +1 on it being apples/oranges

    hypothetical since I have no idea how you play: if you cranked the Aguilar head up and played with a light touch you might have had the same kind of sound. Maybe. Just one way that things can be different.

    I have a friend who is a decent bass player, but very different than me in playing style. I can't tell anything about my gear from having him play through it. He barely touches the strings, doesn't have any "pop" in his attack... If I based my feelings about my rig on listening to him play my bass through it, with the exact same settings, I'd be misled in a big way.

    Also, if you were on stage, how do you know how you sounded all over the room?

    Could you also compare how the other guy sounded on stage vs. in the room? I play a lot of weird stages and the stage sound is nothing like the sound out in the club. I play a lot at one place where you sound like you are blowing the place apart on stage and it sounds thin out front. Others where everything sounds thin on stage and out in front it sounds awesome.

  11. Wireless. Allthough a really long cable would have sufficed.;)
  12. ElMon

    ElMon Supporting Member

    May 30, 2004
    Oklahoma City, OK
    I have a DB750 and here are my thoughts after having tried it out on a plethora of cabs (none of which were mine, but all the same).

    My first experience was the DB into an Ampeg 810...within seconds I could almost hear the ampeg cab whimper in pain due to the shear power of the DB750. Now with two 810's hooked up, the sound could've killed a small terrier. It was ginormous. This was all at guitar center. Next, I moved on to the HLF ampeg and the sound was nice and tight at a moderate volume. I seriously think that Aguilar underates the amount of power coming off of this head. For ****s and giggles, I hooked up my head to a Behringer 810 and I'm pretty sure I immediately blew a speaker.

    As far as EA is concerned, I had an earlier experience with a DB750 thru an EA 210 down at Austin Bass Traders and was dissapointed to be perfectly honest, but that was only because I also heard the head thru an ElWhappo, which was almost excessive in bonecrushing lowend.

    Currently, I'm running the DB into a GS412 and have found my tone nirvana. The sound of the 12's just fills up every room I play in without overpowering everything. It's ability to sit perfectly in any mix (IMHO) is very similar to my experience with Sadowsky Basses, which IMO due exactly the same thing. The GS412 by itself sounds subdued up close, but when I heard a front of house playback with a high quality mic, I was floored by the huge yet detailed depiction of my Smith 6. Hope this helps.
  13. Kael


    Dec 26, 2004
    Oklahoma City
    You are comparing a 210 to a 410 here. Twice the surface area. Not a very fair comparison. Also, if I remember correctly, the vl series EA cabs aren't exactly the world's most efficient. Maybe not as inefficient as Acme's, but still more geared towards flat than loud. Maybe the aggie isn't well mated with that cab? The vl series is reputed as being very flat (I've never played one), so perhaps boosting your lows isn't a good idea with it. Perhaps cut the lows a tad and pump your mids some?

    I normally use a TFB550, an EA nl-210, and a warwick streamer lx6 for most shows (tack on an EA cxl-112 when I'm feelin' frisky). I find that just that 210 is able to provide thick, punchy tone if that's what I desire. But that is the nl series not the vl.

  14. How's that cxl112 with your 210? Does it add considerably? I thought of adding one to get a little bigger sounding, but am not sure if it will solve my "rig delema".
    At the moment I'm not totally satisfied with my sound/volume/tone/punch ect, and am debating a rig change.(all or part)
  15. Kael


    Dec 26, 2004
    Oklahoma City
    note: My cxl-112 is the older heavy model which I've heard others say is slightly more low mid to mid mid focused than the newer lighter ones.

    The 112 really has some, well I guess it could be called aggresive clarity. If you want more clarity it'll definitely help you out. It also puts out more lows, but doesn't feel as thick in the mids as my nl-210. The cxl-112 adds more upper mid range bite and more lows. The two really put out a full sound. If you get a chance to try out the combination, I'd definitely do so. I am very enamored with it.
  16. My biggest gear buying problem is that I'm in a musical void of western Michigan. There are NO dealers around within a 4 hour drive that has anything but ampeg and fender combos. So I buy almost all gear sight unseen.
  17. Eric Cioe

    Eric Cioe

    Jun 4, 2001
    Missoula, MT
    Oh, dude! I'm right there (Muskegon, though I'm in Chicago for school right now).

    I've got a Low Down Sound (definately within four hours of you) 2x12 / 2x6 with neos on the way, and if you're interested in trying it out, I'll let you know.
  18. Kael


    Dec 26, 2004
    Oklahoma City

    I assure you central Oklahoma is not much better. I got a pretty good deal on the cxl-112 used here on TB, so I picked it up thinking I could always unload it for the same price. I really like that cab. On the strength of that, and the number of reviews here and elsewhere about how well the cxl-112 and nl-210 play together, I ordered an nl-210 from golihur.com. Sure it's a no-no to buy "sound unheard", but you can always return for a refund. Did the same thing with an iamp 800 (traded it) and my thunderfunk TFB550 (I'm definitely keeping that one). Lost a little money on shipping, but would have spent same if not more on travelling to the nearest dealer.

    I guess my biggest recommendation for this setup would be to say that my amp/cab GAS is competely satiated. Hope you get your rig worked out.
  19. You call that a musical void, You should try Adelaide Australia... nearest real bass centre is 2000 miles away :crying:
  20. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
    Where were you standing when you were listening to him, and where when listening to yourself? It won't sound the same in the audience as onstage. Was he in the PA? Were you? All your stage rig is supposed to do is play loud enough for you to hear it on stage, the PA is what's supposed to cover the rest of the room.