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which to upgrade first?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by easy, May 3, 2005.


  1. 1x15 to SoB

    4 vote(s)
    21.1%
  2. 2x10 to Goliath Jr

    6 vote(s)
    31.6%
  3. MM Sub to bongo, SR, or corvette

    9 vote(s)
    47.4%
  1. easy

    easy

    Mar 16, 2005
    seattle
    my current setup:

    head: SWR 350x
    cabs: SWR WM 1x15, SWR WM 2x10
    bass: MusicMan SUB

    I don't think I really need to upgrade my head, so I left that off the list.

    I'm thinking my options are: upgrade the 2x10 to the Goliath Jr, upgrade the 1x15 to the SoB, or upgrade my bass to a MM Bongo, SR, or Warwick Corvette.

    What do you guys think?
     
  2. Hollow Man

    Hollow Man Supporting Member

    Apr 28, 2003
    Springfield, VA
    What don't you like about your sound? Figuring out what you want to improve will help provide direction.
     
  3. easy

    easy

    Mar 16, 2005
    seattle
    well, now and then, especially when I'm playing by myself, my cabs sound like they are about to burst into flame. Sometimes I feel like I'm pushing them way too hard.

    Aside from that, there's nothing distinct that I dislike about my sound, but I look at it like this:

    I own a gixxer 600. There's nothing I dislike about it, but I still want to replace the stock steering damper with an aftermarket one, and I still want a full system exhaust... not because I need to go faster, but because I want to be able to go faster, and, actually, I wouldn't mind having a gixxer 1000, or an R1, or a CBR1000 or a ZX10...
     
  4. resol

    resol Guest

    Feb 21, 2005
    mate - leave the SUB, if you change the cabs, it will make THAT much difference...

    i'm a bit biased cos i own a SUB, and a like it to bits
     
  5. easy

    easy

    Mar 16, 2005
    seattle
    yeah, I'm leaning towards the cabs. cheaper than replacing the SUB, too. As long as I just get one cab at a time, that is.
     
  6. Hollow Man

    Hollow Man Supporting Member

    Apr 28, 2003
    Springfield, VA
    Are you sure you're overdriving your cabs and not underpowering them? I don't know what the power handling on your Workingman's cabs are, but with only 350 watts, you might be trying to get more volume out of your head than is possible, and thus sending a clipped signal to your cabs. Then again, 350 watts is a lot of power for playing alone, and you said that you notice this most when you're by yourself. Still, I doubt your cabs are struggling because of too much power... this sounds like a different issue. Either way, if you know you want new cabs anyway, try a few with your current rig and see if you get the same issue before committing.
     
  7. Dude, I've got the 1x15 myself. Try turnign off the tweeter, its a bitch.
     
  8. popinfresh

    popinfresh

    Dec 23, 2004
    Melbourne, Aus
    Waa? I have almost the same rig. Except warwick for an amp and a MM Sterling. My rig sounds sweet. I'm really fond of my WM cabs, sound better than alot of things twice the price, and they're tough as nails.

    I'd personally upgrade the 350x.. Not excatly headroom city.

    Also, I a/b'd the Workingmans 15 to a SOB and didn't notice much difference at all, I only noticed a slight difference with the 210.
     
  9. Pickebass

    Pickebass Supporting Member

    Jul 12, 2004
    San Antonio, TX
    I would start with the WM210. I had one and hated the cab. The WM115 actually sounds nice and is close in sound to the Son of Bertha 115. I know you're not considering the head, but honestly, that's where I would start. You are driving two cabs roughly with 175 watts each. Probably OK but if you were pushing 500-700 watts you could probably maximize the sound out of your bass.
     
  10. easy

    easy

    Mar 16, 2005
    seattle
    you're saying run 500-700 watts when my cabs combined can handle only 400?

    I know that's what a lot of people call "head room" but i don't believe it's the right way to do it. not trying to start arguments, I just don't believe it.

    I'm not pre-amp clipping, I'm actually not driving my head that hard. I do not believe I am underpowering my cabs. My cabs each, at 8 ohms, handle 200 watts, and at 4 ohms my head makes 350 watts.
     
  11. Kelly Lee

    Kelly Lee Yeah, I'm a guy! Supporting Member

    Feb 17, 2004
    Marana, AZ, USA
    I agree with hollow man. The SWR350x is the weak link. I personally think it has a very sterile tone (probably why you can't find anything about your tone you really like) and the power rating is optimistic at best.

    The cabs are decent and will perform better with more power even if you don't believe it.

    The MM SUB, I personally wouldn't change it. Its a good bass with lots of tone.
     
  12. easy

    easy

    Mar 16, 2005
    seattle
    I must have mis-spoke earlier... there are plenty of things about my tone that I like, but nothing specific that I dislike

    also, on a slightly different subject, if "head room", meaning, have more power than your cabs can handle, is the way to go, why does SWR sugges that with my head I use:

    2 Goliath IIIs or
    2 Goliath Juniors or
    2 Son of Berthas or
    1 Goliath Junior and 1 Son of Bertha (the two that I want) or
    1 Goliath III and 1 Goliath Junior
    SWR suggested speaker combinations for the 350x

    if we look at the set up I want, 1 goliath junior (350 watts at 8 ohms) and one Son of Bertha (350 watts at 8 ohms), put those together and you can handle 700 watts at 4 ohms. but the 350x only makes 350 watts at 4 ohms.

    So if "head room" is the best way to do it, why does SWR suggest that I do otherwise? To make a buck? Or because it's not a good idea to over power your speakers?
     
  13. Kelly Lee

    Kelly Lee Yeah, I'm a guy! Supporting Member

    Feb 17, 2004
    Marana, AZ, USA
    SWR wants you to buy SWR products.

    How many bassist here at TB run cabs that may only handle 700 watts but their amp is putting out 1400 or even 2500 watts? Have you read about them blowing their cabs?

    There is nothing wrong with having more power than your cabs are rated for. You just don't turn the level up as much.
     
  14. easy

    easy

    Mar 16, 2005
    seattle
    quite a few, from what I gather.

    Listen, guys, I'm really not trying to just kick sh!t here. Can somebody cite some references outside of TB that expalin head room, though? Because if I really am going about this all wrong, better I find out now than later.
     
  15. Richard Lindsey

    Richard Lindsey

    Mar 25, 2000
    Metro NYC
    Quick and dirty: Outside of possibly a few specialized circumstances (like if you're actually trying to make your SVT's speakers distort a little), there is NO inherent benefit in having more max power available than your cab can handle. There IS inherent value in having more amp power available than you actually need to get the tone and volume you want. Once you have this extra amp power, it doesn't really matter whether your cab isr ated below your amp's max output, the same, or above, *as long as the cab is at least able to handle the amount of power you're likely to be using*. Remember, the whole point of having a bigger amp than you need is precisely so that you're *not* using all the juice it has on anything like a continuous basis. If you have a 1400 W amp, you may be using only around 200-300 on any semiconstant basis. So a 600 W cab would likely be fine--but so would a 1400 W cab or a 2000 W cab.
     
  16. Hollow Man

    Hollow Man Supporting Member

    Apr 28, 2003
    Springfield, VA
    Headroom does not imply having more power than your cabs can handle. Headroom means that your amp has more power than you need to achieve the volume that you want. For instance, if it takes 500 watts to stay in the mix with a group, you'd probably want an amp with a higher power rating. This is to ensure that your signal (especially your low end, which takes more power to amplify at a relatively equal volume as the rest of your frequency range) stays sharp and doesn't clip when you perform a sharp attack.

    As far as your cabs go, I wouldn't necessarily recommend putting 500-700 watts into those cabs, but they should take a good bit more than your SWR 350x is putting into them. But if you're sure you're not underpowering them, this is all moot. If you like your head and like your power, then the problem is likely with your cab. Either something's wrong, or you're just not getting what you like out of them, in which case you should definitely replace the cabs first.
     
  17. Pickebass

    Pickebass Supporting Member

    Jul 12, 2004
    San Antonio, TX
    I run a 300 watt cab on a regular basis with 800 watts and have never had a problem. This is about not having to run you amp at the max load all the time. More speaker damages occur when you are underpowering the amp. There are quite a few threads on this issue. Based on what you are saying your problem is, more power will make a big difference in what you are trying to do. The changes in the cabs will be minimal and your bass is definitely a keeper (if you like the sound). Why don't you try someone's poweramp and take the preamp out of the 350x and see if you hear or feel a difference
     
  18. Kelly Lee

    Kelly Lee Yeah, I'm a guy! Supporting Member

    Feb 17, 2004
    Marana, AZ, USA
    Thats a good suggestion Pickebass.
     
  19. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Staff Member Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
  20. easy

    easy

    Mar 16, 2005
    seattle
    okay, this makes a lot of sense. and in this case, I have enough head room, but just barely.