#2
a head is a preamp and poweramp section in one...rack amps alow you to buy a separate preamp and a separate poweramp and match them....either way you need a cab to play it through.

a combo of course ia a head (preamp and poweramp) combined with a speaker so you dont need a cab with it!
#3
assuming its the same model its usually just size. rack stuff can get a little hotter because its more compact and rack gear is generally harder to service for the same reason.
#4
I am Jesus
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#5
Quote by GangsterLi
I am Jesus


JEBUS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
They made me do push ups in drag

I'm gonna have a really hard time if we're both cannibals and racists.

Don't dress as a whore, he'll thump you.

I'm a firework, primed to go off
#6
come on guys don't be retards

and so from wat i gather from wat has been said
rack units cost more too
also are rack units the same watts as a head unit
#7
Quote by Stretch_Wilson
come on guys don't be retards

and so from wat i gather from wat has been said
rack units cost more too
also are rack units the same watts as a head unit


Many of them can't help acting that way...

It's all subject to the individual manufacturer. For Example, Mesa/Boogie made a Rack mount kit for the MK Series short heads and combos, which just retrofit it into an enclosure w/ rack ears for mounting in a rack



#8
**** that is a ****in complex rack in that picture and tru
is mixing different power and pre amps wise as in wattage or brands
#9
Rack preamps and power amps are really cool. There's really so much more stuff you can do with them, but they're not for someone looking for a simple setup by any means. They can get quite complicated, especially once you start adding in MIDI.
Quote by Dave_Mc
I've had tube amps for a while now, but never actually had any go down on me
Quote by jj1565
maybe you're not saying the right things? an amp likes to know you care.





www.SanctityStudios.com
#10
Quote by Stretch_Wilson
**** that is a ****in complex rack in that picture


No it isn't. It is a simple rig and was rather common back in the 80's/early 90's.

Quote by Stretch_Wilson
and tru is mixing different power and pre amps wise as in wattage or brands


It is a common thing to do, and one of the many benefits of running a component system.

Quote by MatrixClaw
Rack preamps and power amps are really cool. There's really so much more stuff you can do with them, but they're not for someone looking for a simple setup by any means. They can get quite complicated, especially once you start adding in MIDI.


True...
Last edited by zachman5150 at Feb 9, 2009,
#12
Midi can be used to control patches, parameters and any other setting which are normally manually done. 1 Midi command can tell a number of units to change to a paticular patch for example.
#13
Quote by zachman5150
No it isn't. It is a simple rig and was rather common back in the 80's/early 90's.

With all respect...

No. Its not.

To you it is because you have like, uberrack. But whats simple in rack standards still isn't simple, because racks are just more complicated. End of story. I'm sure I would find it to be not that complicated after working with it for a while. But Racks are rarely ever simple.


THIS is simple. Because I plug my guitar in and turn it on.



Again, no offence, but just saying, to someone who knows nothing about racks? No rack is simple. And to someone who knows barely any? A simple rack, is not simple.
I'm Joel. I play guitar. I am a student. I look at the cost of tuition, not in a dollar value, but in the guitars I'm sacrificing now, to be able to buy later.
Last edited by echo_4190 at Feb 10, 2009,
#14
Quote by echo_4190
With all respect...

No. Its not.

To you it is because you have like, uberrack. But whats simple in rack standards still isn't simple, because racks are just more complicated. End of story. I'm sure I would find it to be not that complicated after working with it for a while. But Racks are rarely ever simple.


THIS is simple. Because I plug my guitar in and turn it on.



Again, no offence, but just saying, to someone who knows nothing about racks? No rack is simple. And to someone who knows barely any? A simple rack, is not simple.


E V E R Y T H I N G.............. has a learning curve... that doesn't mean something is complicated, it just means that there is a process or set of processes to learn before something is understood.

As far as you saying that racks are rarely ever simple, THAT my friend is false. Think about it: First of all a rack is merely an enclosure spec. You could have a preamp and a power amp in a rack, that is no more complicated than you plugging into your combo with your guitar... You may have an additional step like plugging in your speaker cable to a cabinet or two, but I wouldn't call THAT complicated. Would you?

Granted that rack is more than a preamp and a power amp, but not really any more complicated than a pedal board with 5 pedals on it
#15
I have to agree with Zachman on this one. Everything has a learning curve and rack setups that appear to be crazy complex can actually be particularly simple. I think a lot of this has to do with some psychology principles that focus on learning multiple ways of accomplishing the same or similar goals, and that most people learn to sculpt a tone with "normal" amps and pedals before they're introduced to the concept of rack equipment (regardless of whether or not they ever end up using it). Being that this is not a psychology forum I'll spare the details and just say that learning to do something the first time is usually way easier than relearning it a different way.

My rack case looks like an engineering nightmare to the uninitiated (at least from the back, which still surprises me because it's very tidy), but anyone halfway familiar with signal routing could completely disassemble it and reassemble it in 30 minutes. In fact the biggest reason I switched over to rack equipment in the first place was because my pedalboard was entirely too complicated (18"x36" completely full with multiple bypass boxes and a total of 6 different cables running to/near the amp). The icing on the cake is that my setup/teardown time is down from over 20 minutes to right at 5 minutes, and my rack rig is infinitely more versatile than the old pedalboard ever was.

All I'm saying is that while it may not be as simple as plugging a guitar straight into a combo it can still be very simple, even if it doesn't look that way.
ESP LTD EC-256 and a Fender Deluxe VM
#16
Quote by Kendall
I have to agree with Zachman on this one. Everything has a learning curve and rack setups that appear to be crazy complex can actually be particularly simple. I think a lot of this has to do with some psychology principles that focus on learning multiple ways of accomplishing the same or similar goals, and that most people learn to sculpt a tone with "normal" amps and pedals before they're introduced to the concept of rack equipment (regardless of whether or not they ever end up using it). Being that this is not a psychology forum I'll spare the details and just say that learning to do something the first time is usually way easier than relearning it a different way.

My rack case looks like an engineering nightmare to the uninitiated (at least from the back, which still surprises me because it's very tidy), but anyone halfway familiar with signal routing could completely disassemble it and reassemble it in 30 minutes. In fact the biggest reason I switched over to rack equipment in the first place was because my pedalboard was entirely too complicated (18"x36" completely full with multiple bypass boxes and a total of 6 different cables running to/near the amp). The icing on the cake is that my setup/teardown time is down from over 20 minutes to right at 5 minutes, and my rack rig is infinitely more versatile than the old pedalboard ever was.

All I'm saying is that while it may not be as simple as plugging a guitar straight into a combo it can still be very simple, even if it doesn't look that way.


You are EXACTLY correct. Unlearning bad technique and replacing it with proper technique is much more difficult than learning something "Right" the 1st time.

Sometimes there are several ways to accomplish the same thing, sometimes there aren't and are rather-- only a small few ways. Critical thinking and being able to come up with creative solutions within a time frame is ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS a beneficial and useful skill to possess. The BEST way to master this, is via EXPERIENCE with LOTS of different gear, over extended periods of time, and by taking an adventurous approach to explore and get to know the "Tools of the trade".

I figure it's ALL perspective. It's NEVER a bad thing to know about the tools of our trade, (What they are, how they work, how to use them in various configurations, when to use them in context for the best possible result etc...)

A complex rack, can still be simple. (Simple to use, simple to trouble shoot, simple to setup/tear down). Sure there are other things to do like: MIDI map your devices to your MIDI foot controller, program your processors, THINK about your effects' combination's etc..., but that is no more difficult than pressing a few buttons. How hard is that?

Of course there's a learning curve, but that is just how it IS. Those who aren't willing will be stuck with their own self-imposed limitations.


Last edited by zachman5150 at Feb 10, 2009,
#17
Quote by zachman5150
E V E R Y T H I N G.............. has a learning curve... that doesn't mean something is complicated, it just means that there is a process or set of processes to learn before something is understood.

As far as you saying that racks are rarely ever simple, THAT my friend is false. Think about it: First of all a rack is merely an enclosure spec. You could have a preamp and a power amp in a rack, that is no more complicated than you plugging into your combo with your guitar... You may have an additional step like plugging in your speaker cable to a cabinet or two, but I wouldn't call THAT complicated. Would you?

Granted that rack is more than a preamp and a power amp, but not really any more complicated than a pedal board with 5 pedals on it


I didn't say I found racks complicated, (look, I record my friends bands in my spare time, I know how to hook up sound gear) but to a lot of people they are, and I feel they are right in thinking so. A lot of people would never get the 5 pedals I have connected to my amp right now either. But its harder for people to grasp the concept of the two seperate amps, and then the big rack effects.

The picture you posted earlier, of that rack, I agree, its not that complicated, but its not simple, you have to get it. And although, there only appear to be 4 or 5 effects modules and a power and preamp there, each rack effect is harder to learn to use, because you can do so many different things with them.

Look, no disrespect man, I'm not calling you an idiot (and I'd ask that you do the same, not that you have, but again, respect dude) I'm just saying, racks are more complicated to people who don't know much about either.

And I wouldn't find a rack hard to use. I'd love one, TBH, but, people that don't get them, or how they work, aren't morons, because there is certainly way more to know about a rack than a combo, sure my combo does have a pre and power amp stage, like a rack, (as you said, and I DO understand that what happens inside is the same thing, aplification, and driving a speaker) but I don't have to know that if I don't want, I can just plug it in.

Again, just defending those who know less about audio, all of us were noobs once.

Sorry if it seemed like I was taking an uneducated potshot at you because *I* don't get them. That isn't the case. They make sense to me, I wired the rack effects in our schools theater PA system, as a matter of fact. Its just not simple to newcomers, that's all.
I'm Joel. I play guitar. I am a student. I look at the cost of tuition, not in a dollar value, but in the guitars I'm sacrificing now, to be able to buy later.
Last edited by echo_4190 at Feb 10, 2009,
#18
Quote by zachman5150

Granted that rack is more than a preamp and a power amp, but not really any more complicated than a pedal board with 5 pedals on it

And probably many times more versatile as well. Anything can be complicated like said until someone spends some time with it. But at the end of the day, it's a preamp, a power amp, and it's effects. How you adjust the settings and turn them on/off is the basic difference here.
#19
Quote by echo_4190
I didn't say I found racks complicated, (look, I record my friends bands in my spare time, I know how to hook up sound gear) but to a lot of people they are, and I feel they are right in thinking so. A lot of people would never get the 5 pedals I have connected to my amp right now either. But its harder for people to grasp the concept of the two seperate amps, and then the big rack effects.

The picture you posted earlier, of that rack, I agree, its not that complicated, but its not simple, you have to get it. And although, there only appear to be 4 or 5 effects modules and a power and preamp there, each rack effect is harder to learn to use, because you can do so many different things with them.

Look, no disrespect man, I'm not calling you an idiot (and I'd ask that you do the same, not that you have, but again, respect dude) I'm just saying, racks are more complicated to people who don't know much about either.

And I wouldn't find a rack hard to use. I'd love one, TBH, but, people that don't get them, or how they work, aren't morons, because there is certainly way more to know about a rack than a combo, sure my combo does have a pre and power amp stage, like a rack, (as you said, and I DO understand that what happens inside is the same thing, aplification, and driving a speaker) but I don't have to know that if I don't want, I can just plug it in.

Again, just defending those who know less about audio, all of us were noobs once.

Sorry if it seemed like I was taking an uneducated potshot at you because *I* don't get them. That isn't the case. They make sense to me, I wired the rack effects in our schools theater PA system, as a matter of fact. Its just not simple to newcomers, that's all.


I just don't equate nor think it's beneficial to view the world through the lenses of if you "Don't get it" it's "hard", or "complicated". Why attach a stigma to something like that?

No, it's just not understood. It's not Brain surgery, it's just plugging in a few cables and learning a few SIMPLE concepts. THAT doesn't seem hard, and yes I was a noob once too, but NEVER looked at stuff I didn't understand with a sense of OMG, it's too hard or complicated. I guess I was more adventurous than a significant number of others who accept the "it's hard" or "too complicated" path. I ALWAYS wanted to figure out "how to" scenarios re: gear.

My $.02



Quote by gregs1020
And probably many times more versatile as well. Anything can be complicated like said until someone spends some time with it. But at the end of the day, it's a preamp, a power amp, and it's effects. How you adjust the settings and turn them on/off is the basic difference here.


NO question-- regarding versatility. I would rather use my gear, not be limited by it. I've done the "tons of pedals on the floor" thing, and prefer to play music--not to be tap dancing on a bunch of pedals, resetting knobs after every song or two, have my rig go down because of one connection in the chain going south, having drunk audience members spilling beer on the pedals, stealing them off the stage, putting wear and tear on my pedals.

I like being able to step on one button and select which amp is selected, what channel it's on, which effects are on/off, which presets on several different processors are called up, having real time continuous control via an expression pedal to control things like mix outputs, time changes, etc...
Last edited by zachman5150 at Feb 10, 2009,
#20
Quote by Stretch_Wilson
wat is the difference between a rack amp and just an ordinary head??


Referring to the original question, the only difference between a rack head and a normal one is that a rack head can be mounted in a rack. That's it. You can get a racked preamp and power amp separately, but then it's not really a head...and the other stuff in a rack (compressor, tuner, etc...) isn't part of the head at all.
Nope, no sig here.
#21
Quote by zachman5150

I like being able to step on one button and select which amp is selected, what channel it's on, which effects are on/off, which presets on several different processors are called up, having real time continuous control via an expression pedal to control things like mix outputs, time changes, etc...

That right there is the key, control. While you do have control with pedalboards, you could be tap-dancing your ars off depending on the song. And I generally feel that you get better quality effects in rack form. Generally - because some units are utter crap just like pedals, it depends on the unit.
#22
i think i can agree with all the guys saying that the rack units in the picture are probably very simple
i have already got a pretty simply understanding now
and i think it gets more complicated wen you add multiple effects loops and **** like that
#23
TBH without being big headed I've never found racks that complicated. You've just got to focus on the signal path, and where that signal is going in and out of. That's it.

The only other aspect of a rack is the MIDI side, and although it can be difficult to program initially, it's nothing you can't do without a notebook and some basic instruction.
...
#24
Quote by Stretch_Wilson
i think i can agree with all the guys saying that the rack units in the picture are probably very simple
i have already got a pretty simply understanding now
and i think it gets more complicated wen you add multiple effects loops and **** like that


Like anything... You can make something WAY more involved-- the larger the systems get.

The trick is KNOWING what you're wanting/needing to accomplish, and knowing what gear does that, AND know how to hook it up to get the desired result, and know how to program it to get you the sounds you're after.

Sure there is a certain amount of experience required to "KNOW" how to achieve the recipe you're after-BUT, I don't think it's difficult-- just time consuming and a certain amount of creative vision doesn't hurt either.
#25
Actually, zachman could you advise me on a couple of points? I'm going for a rather simple reamping rig (i.e taking the signal from my head into a load box to another power amp), mainly becuase I like to have my cranked Rocker tone for practise, and to atone for the lack of an effects loop in my head. I've got it all worked out, but I seem to remember you recommending a specific brand of cables as some of the best. What was that brand? And also, what power conditioner would you advise for up to say 6 rackmount units?
...
#26
Quote by Stretch_Wilson
**** that is a ****in complex rack in that picture and tru
is mixing different power and pre amps wise as in wattage or brands

That's not complex THIS is complex!! Apologies for the small pic.


Here's his newer one though.


It's John Petrucci's, in case nobody guessed And he used heads, of course, with some rack amp gear in there here and there.
Then there's this band called Slice The Cake...

Bunch of faggots putting random riffs together and calling it "progressive" deathcore.
Stupid name.
Probably picked "for teh lulz"

Mod in UG's Official Gain Whores
Last edited by Shinozoku at Feb 10, 2009,
#27
Quote by bartdevil_metal
Actually, zachman could you advise me on a couple of points? I'm going for a rather simple reamping rig (i.e taking the signal from my head into a load box to another power amp), mainly becuase I like to have my cranked Rocker tone for practise, and to atone for the lack of an effects loop in my head. I've got it all worked out, but I seem to remember you recommending a specific brand of cables as some of the best. What was that brand? And also, what power conditioner would you advise for up to say 6 rackmount units?


Mogami 2524 instrument cable w/ Neutrik or Switchcraft ends, BUT... for your heads' load out to your load box you will use Speaker cable, NOT instrument cable. Belden, is what I use.

Re: a power conditioner. MANY brands call themselves "power conditioners" but are seldom more than a rackmountable multi-outlet strip.

A Power conditioner will (filter out AC noise).

Other features the cooler units provide are: voltage regulation (to keep your voltage consistent), They'll also offer Surge protection (Like a multi-outlet strip)

The Furman: AR15II, PF Pro R or The NEW Furman: PL-Pro DMC

Last edited by zachman5150 at Feb 10, 2009,
#28
Cheers man. I figure it's easier doing this stuff right the first time and not having to replace half the rig.

...
#29
Quote by bartdevil_metal
Cheers man. I figure it's easier doing this stuff right the first time and not having to replace half the rig.





I realize that it isn't always possible, as funds don't always permit a timely solution, and sometimes we are forced to come up with alternative solutions... BUT, IF we have a clear vision as to what the "ideal" is-- Then, we plan and act accordingly, we get there most efficiently.