#1
Ok, my band is looking to purchase some half stacks soon.

The Crate Flexwave 120W caught my eye. It looks like a pretty good amp, and the price is good. ($450)

Is this amp going to be loud enough to play gigs for 50-100 people with no PA support? The reviews and demo's on this amp on Youtube made it sound pretty good. The clean settings sound good, and the overdrive/gain sounds pretty good as well.
Will this amp be ok for regular gigging?
#2
they arent bad but you can definately do better

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#3
I personally own the 120w halfstack version.
I bought it because the clean sounded amazing (it's actually the guess what amp it is clip on my profile)
However, it is everything but reliable. I had to send it 3 times to get a warranty replacement and the last one they sent me arrived flubby. It is now more or less dead and I can't send it anymore because the warranty expired last year.
The cab is nice, I use it with my bassman and it sounds pretty good in my opinion.
#4
Quote by Darkflame
I personally own the 120w halfstack version.
I bought it because the clean sounded amazing (it's actually the guess what amp it is clip on my profile)
However, it is everything but reliable. I had to send it 3 times to get a warranty replacement and the last one they sent me arrived flubby. It is now more or less dead and I can't send it anymore because the warranty expired last year.
The cab is nice, I use it with my bassman and it sounds pretty good in my opinion.


I have the same problem. My first one ended up randomly turning the effects on and off and now my new one doesn't play the second channel at all. It's a good deal for the money, but it most likely will break after a few months. (This is also with the amp just sitting in one place, I can't imagine this thing still working on the road)
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#7
Admiral Ackbar would caution you that there's a distinct possibility of a trap with this purchase.
Everyone is entitled to an opinion.

Feel free to express yours so I can make an informed judgement about how stupid you are.
#8
checkout the new fender modeling amps they are pretty good and are around the same price as the crate
#9
i had one and was having problems with the effects. i never sent it in for warranty because i couldnt be without an amp.
but i did use it for shows with 50-100 people and it worked.
if i did have all my gear in my sig, id have to change it weekly

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#10
It sounds a lot better than the run of the mill Spider/MG/whatever, as its true analog solid state circuitry and not some digital modeling bullshit, but like others have said, it's not reliable in any way whatsoever and is nowhere even near loud enough to play unmic'd let alone with a drummer. It's more of a bedroom amp for 13 year olds, not a gigging amp.

It will cost you a bit more, but look into a Dean Dime D100. It's a clone of the Randall RG100 that Dimebag Darrel used to use. It gets a lot of hate here, for the two reasons that it's not just solid state, but it's Chinese made and involves Dean using Dimebag's name to make money. But it sounds decent (for solid state, of course) and can get loud enough to play in a band situation or an unmic'd gig. My rhythm guitarist owns one, and it's surprisingly able to keep up with my Jet City.
#11
$450 can be much better spent. To point you in the right direction; 120 watts is WAY more than you need for gigging. A lot of ~30 watt amps are totally gig worthy.
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#12
you might be able to find a used peavey xxx or ultra for that. it will do the sounds you want very well.

Also, that is assuming the sounds you want are close to the music/bands listed in your profile such as A7X, 3DG, BB, Red
Originally posted by primusfan
When you crank up the gain to 10 and switch to the lead channel, it actually sounds like you are unjustifiably bombing an innocent foreign land.


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#13
Quote by tubetime86
$450 can be much better spent. To point you in the right direction; 120 watts is WAY more than you need for gigging. A lot of ~30 watt amps are totally gig worthy.

The Flexwave is not like any other 120w amp. My rhythm guitarist previously owned one, and at the last practice we had with it, he had the thing cranked all the way and it still wasn't loud enough to keep up with my amp, which was on 2.5. Crate clearly doesn't know the difference between 120 watts and 10 watts. I mean, I understand solid state amps aren't supposed sound as loud as tube amps, but the Flexwave is pathetic when it comes to volume.
#14
Quote by tubetime86
$450 can be much better spent. To point you in the right direction; 120 watts is WAY more than you need for gigging. A lot of ~30 watt amps are totally gig worthy.


We are currently using a few 30 watt tubes for practice. (Peavey Classic 30W and some 30W Traynor.) They both sound ****ing amazing but without PA support there's no way they would be loud enough.
#16
Quote by coolstoryangus
Chances are those would be louder then the crate halfstack..


Seriously? I don't really have a good understanding then, of how a 30 watt tube amp could be louder than a 120W solid state. I know it's a stupid question, but I've never really understood how that would work.
#17
If a classic 30 cannot play a gig with 50-100 people without PA support then something is broken.

The Crate flexwave is not a good amp. imo...
#18
Quote by Zach101
Seriously? I don't really have a good understanding then, of how a 30 watt tube amp could be louder than a 120W solid state. I know it's a stupid question, but I've never really understood how that would work.

Read my above post.
#19
Dont buy it, waste of money. It might be hard to get a whole half stack for $450 that sounds good. But you can get a used amp that will be alot better than ANY crate for $450.

But also remember the cab and speakers along with guitar and pickups will have a significant impact on the sound.

It would be best to list what style you guyd play and what type of tone your looking for to get into it a little deeper.
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#20
Alright, I think you guys have me convinced NOT to get the Crate Flexwave lol.

I'm actually the drummer in my band, so I don't know that much about guitar amps... But my guitar players are too lazy to do any research.

Are there any decent half stacks that I could look into for around like $600-700?

And the tone we're looking for is like Breaking Benjamin, Red, Tool, etc. Alternative Metal I guess.
#21
In my opinion? No, there isn't. I would not spend less than $1000 on a half stack (used). But that's me, you may get around that by a few hundred... I've seen Marshall DSL50s go for $600 or so... and then a decent Marshall cab go for $300... etc. but otherwise, I would not spend less than $1000. Until you get to that point, the "benefits" of having the halfstack is outweighed by the crappiness of an inferior amp.
#22
If your 30 watt tube amps can't do a crowd of 50 - 100 people, something is seriously wrong.
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#24
Quote by Zach101
Alright, I think you guys have me convinced NOT to get the Crate Flexwave lol.

I'm actually the drummer in my band, so I don't know that much about guitar amps... But my guitar players are too lazy to do any research.

Are there any decent half stacks that I could look into for around like $600-700?

And the tone we're looking for is like Breaking Benjamin, Red, Tool, etc. Alternative Metal I guess.



Why do your guitarists need halfstacks anyway? More speakers don't make it any louder. It may give the illusion it is as there is more air being dispersed from a wider surface and the added low end, although apart from that it's pointless with the budget you're on.

Try something like a peavey vyper tube, peavey classic or maybe a bugera 333xl combo?
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#25
You can easily get a Peavey XXX or Ultra half stack in your budget. I would recommend either of those (same amp, different housing).

A Bugera 333 (XXX clone) would also work, although you'll have the inevitable lack of reliability/durability you'll get with Peavey.

Quote by Adam124
Why do your guitarists need halfstacks anyway? More speakers don't make it any louder. It may give the illusion it is as there is more air being dispersed from a wider surface and the added low end, although apart from that it's pointless with the budget you're on.


Having half stacks isn't necessarily about loudness. But regardless, to the non-musician (which 99% of your audience usually will be), half stacks look much more professional, and just plain cooler. It's part of the band image, and is therefore important.
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#26
Quote by Offworld92



Having half stacks isn't necessarily about loudness. But regardless, to the non-musician (which 99% of your audience usually will be), half stacks look much more professional, and just plain cooler. It's part of the band image, and is therefore important.



People always say this, but where I'm from no one really cares about amps like that. It seems that people who know anything about amps will base their opinions on the quality of the amp rather than the looks. And people who know nothing about music won't even notice the amp. If they do, they won't remember what it looked like because they were too mesmerized by the singer's face hahah.

Disclaimer: I am posting about my own experiences with local shows where I live. Your experience my differ.
Originally posted by primusfan
When you crank up the gain to 10 and switch to the lead channel, it actually sounds like you are unjustifiably bombing an innocent foreign land.


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#27
Quote by Offworld92
You can easily get a Peavey XXX or Ultra half stack in your budget. I would recommend either of those (same amp, different housing).

A Bugera 333 (XXX clone) would also work, although you'll have the inevitable lack of reliability/durability you'll get with Peavey.


Having half stacks isn't necessarily about loudness. But regardless, to the non-musician (which 99% of your audience usually will be), half stacks look much more professional, and just plain cooler. It's part of the band image, and is therefore important.



I think if someone goes out to buy a halfstack for that sole purpose, then they are a massive douche.
I for one would be more interested in what the band sounds like and how their stage presence conveys to the audience. If you haven't got that connection, it doesn't matter how many walls of halfstacks you've got!
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Ibanez RGA 121 Prestige
ESP LTD DJ600
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Maxon O808
TC Electronic Flashback Delay
ISP Decimator
MXR 10 Band EQ
Boss T-U3 Tuner Pedal
#28
Well, I'll show you guys where we'll be playing. It's like an outdoor high school BBQ show lol but this should give you an idea of what we need to prepare for. We've played tons of acoustic gigs before, but this is our first electric show and we just want to make sure that everything is gonna be loud enough and still sound good.

This is the place. (This isn't my band btw)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VDnW47T8Qys
#29
Actually that's probably more than 100 people if you look at the end of the video. lol. But yeah this is the sort of crowd we'd need to be loud enough for.
#30
look into the bugera line of amps the V55 head will crank out some good tones and it runs @$350 then look into a blackheart 4x12 they have them cheep at zzounds.com $300(they have surprisingly good sound ) or even look a the JCA 20H it runs about $250 new and is plenty to run a 4x12 you may need a pedal to get that realy heavy gain, but these are what I'd suggest with the budget you have.
#31
Get a Blue Voodoo halfstack instead. Same company, much better amp, same price range. You might also want to look at a Peavey Valveking halfstack for a similar price.
Last edited by Helicopters! at May 2, 2011,
#32
I have a 22 watt tube amp that is capable of drowning out most of my band, easily plays small-med venues. Mind you thats pure tube breakup at those volumes, and if you're playing metal, that would probably be undesirable.

That's a pretty tight budget for a cab and head.. I see JCM 8/900's going for decent used prices, maybe look for used Bugera's, or Jet City too.
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#33
Quote by Helicopters!
Get a Blue Voodoo halfstack instead. Same company, much better amp, same price range. You might also want to look at a Peavey Valveking halfstack for a similar price.

This, or the Windsor ($399 new for head!).
#34
you should use that money and buy a decent 4x12 cab used. Marshall 1960/Mesa/ect. then just save up for decent heads, while using the tube combos as a head in the mean time.

EDIT: you should be able to score 2 Marshall 1960 4x12s for less than $800. I find them on Craigslist all the time!

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Last edited by New_Crisis at May 3, 2011,
#35
Wait a second, we can use our tube amps as heads for cabs? If so, that would probably enable us to start off by purchasing higher quality cabs.
#36
does the amp have a speaker out on the back?
also, even if you can't...I feel like you should start off buying good quality cabs regardless. your tube combos are already loud enough for gigging, and tone wise will out perform any solid state head you buy. I say, buy good cabs, save money for good tube heads and use the combos in the mean time.

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Fender American Deluxe Telecaster (little 59')
Peavey 5150 II
Orange PPC412
Boss NS-2
Boss DD-3
Monster Power Pro 900
Korg Pitchblack Pro
Sennheiser EW 172 Wireless
Carvin 6 space rack