Reddaz
Registered User
Join date: Aug 2007
502 IQ
#1
I know this gets asked all the time on here but I'm looking for Bass Amp advice!

I'm usually more of a guitarist (go figure?), so while I know a little bit about guitar amps I'm still fairly clueless about bass amps. I've had a string of bass amps and never been happy with them!

The 2 things I'm looking for more than anything are:
Lots of clean low end at high volumes
Reliability

I'm currently running a Peavey Tour 700 through either a matching TVX 1X15 8ohm Cab or a TVX 4X10 4ohm Cab (I've not noticed a significant volume boost running both). Despite having 700 watts to play with to be remotely audible above drums and with guitar I have to cut all the bass from the EQ and sound crap. I've also being running this at it's limit for so long that the head packed in the other day, which will require repairing

Before this I owned an old 2nd hand Trace Elliot half stack (no idea of the model, but the head was lit up by a neon inside?). This just did an overdriven bass tone which isn't my bag. Surprisingly the amp I was most pleased with was a Crate 220 1X15 combo I bought 2nd hand dirt cheap years ago, as it had the tone and volume level I was after, but it broke after 6 months
Blah blah blah here's the skinny:

Budget - £1000, 100 or 2 over if its really worth it.

Genres - Modern Rock/Metal, think Alter Bridge, Dream Theater, Black Stone Cherry, newer Alice In Chains.

New or Used - Preferably new due to bad experiences with used bass gear.

Home or Gig - Gigging. 2 guitarists use a Blackstar Series One 200 and an old 100 Watt Randall into 4X12 cabs

Closest City - Preston, Lancs UK (Though Manchester is better for gear)

Current Gear - Ibanez BTB into a Peavey Tour 700 head and Peavey TVX 4X10

Probably leaning towards something with a 1X15 because I'm all about the low end, but open to any suggestions.
Guitar:
Jackson RR3//Vintage VS6
Digitech EX7 //Bad Monkey//Digidelay
MXR EVH Phase 90//Black Label Chorus
Peavey 6505 Head//Crate G412SL 4X12 Cab

Bass:
Ibanez BTB 4-string
Peavey Tour 700 Head//410 TVX 4X10 Cab
Hear My Band
FatalGear41
War Mastiff!!!
Join date: Oct 2009
1,381 IQ
#3
How much does Hartke's Kilo bass head cost over there? It would certainly do what you want it to do. It should sound good with your Peavey cabinets, too. It costs about US$1,000.00 in the U.S.A.
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Ziphoblat
The Enigma
Join date: Jun 2010
390 IQ
#4
In your position I'd be looking to buy a Barefaced cabinet. Absolutely awesome bits of kit, has completely cured any cabinet-related GAS for me. A S12T will set you back about £900 new but they hold their value, will take nearly anything you can throw at them, and will sound far better with a cheaper head than running an expensive head into a cheaper cab. You'll never need another cab in your life. Would still leave you a few hundred towards an amp, you could pick up something like a Hartke HA3500 or an Ampeg PF500 and have an absolutely killer rig.
Spare a Cow
Eat a Vegan
Reddaz
Registered User
Join date: Aug 2007
502 IQ
#5
Quote by Ippon
I'm GASing for a MarkBass TTE 500. Worked very well with 2 EVM15Bs and was louder through 4 EVM12Ls.
I like the look of MarkBass heads but not too sure about that particular model, seems more geared for an old school bass sound rather than a modern one.

Quote by FatalGear41
How much does Hartke's Kilo bass head cost over there? It would certainly do what you want it to do. It should sound good with your Peavey cabinets, too. It costs about US$1,000.00 in the U.S.A.
Found one for just under £700 new. could be a promising replacement for the Peavey Head if it comes to it down the line.

Quote by Ziphoblat
In your position I'd be looking to buy a Barefaced cabinet. Absolutely awesome bits of kit, has completely cured any cabinet-related GAS for me. A S12T will set you back about £900 new but they hold their value, will take nearly anything you can throw at them, and will sound far better with a cheaper head than running an expensive head into a cheaper cab. You'll never need another cab in your life. Would still leave you a few hundred towards an amp, you could pick up something like a Hartke HA3500 or an Ampeg PF500 and have an absolutely killer rig.
Had a good nosey at the Barefaced stuff because I'd never heard of them, I have to say they seem to talk a lot of sense on their website! Having previously tested different heads as well as running combos into either of my Peavey cabs I see what you mean about a good quality cab being most important, as I don't think they can really accept the heads power (despite supposedly being the matching cabs according to Peavey).

All in all I think I'm leaning towards the Bearfaced cabs, they seem to be on my wavelength Thanks for the help guys, keep it coming!
Guitar:
Jackson RR3//Vintage VS6
Digitech EX7 //Bad Monkey//Digidelay
MXR EVH Phase 90//Black Label Chorus
Peavey 6505 Head//Crate G412SL 4X12 Cab

Bass:
Ibanez BTB 4-string
Peavey Tour 700 Head//410 TVX 4X10 Cab
Hear My Band
RubberSoul54321
UG's Train Wreck
Join date: Dec 2005
845 IQ
#6
£1000 should get you a fairly high end Ashdown.
"I didn't mean to kill nobody ... I just meant to shoot the sonofabitch in the head. Him dying was between him and the Lord." RL Burnside.

"I won't waste my love on a nation" BRMC
Ziphoblat
The Enigma
Join date: Jun 2010
390 IQ
#7
Quote by RubberSoul54321
£1000 should get you a fairly high end Ashdown.


If mud's your thing you'll get a fair few tones of it for that amount of money I'd imagine.


All in all I think I'm leaning towards the Bearfaced cabs, they seem to be on my wavelength Thanks for the help guys, keep it coming!


If you decide to go that route you won't be disappointed!
Spare a Cow
Eat a Vegan
RubberSoul54321
UG's Train Wreck
Join date: Dec 2005
845 IQ
#8
Dunno about mud - I love the growl I get from mine.
"I didn't mean to kill nobody ... I just meant to shoot the sonofabitch in the head. Him dying was between him and the Lord." RL Burnside.

"I won't waste my love on a nation" BRMC
Ziphoblat
The Enigma
Join date: Jun 2010
390 IQ
#9
Quote by RubberSoul54321
Dunno about mud - I love the growl I get from mine.


I'm assuming you don't run it into an Ashdown cab, then?
Spare a Cow
Eat a Vegan
RubberSoul54321
UG's Train Wreck
Join date: Dec 2005
845 IQ
#10
Yep, I do - a 4 x 10. Head's a MAG 300. Bad Monkey OD in front.
"I didn't mean to kill nobody ... I just meant to shoot the sonofabitch in the head. Him dying was between him and the Lord." RL Burnside.

"I won't waste my love on a nation" BRMC
Ziphoblat
The Enigma
Join date: Jun 2010
390 IQ
#11
Always found them terribly undefined myself. The dynamics feel limited and whilst there's a reasonable amount of mids I can never get the slightest bit of top end zing.
Spare a Cow
Eat a Vegan
RubberSoul54321
UG's Train Wreck
Join date: Dec 2005
845 IQ
#12
Maybe I just got lucky but it suits what I play. I've used a shed load of other rigs live at multi-band gigs and can never get the tone I like from anything else. Worst thing I ever used was a GK but I don't know what model it was - deadest sound I ever heard. My MAG rocks but at the end of the day it's all about your own taste. Horses for courses and all that.
"I didn't mean to kill nobody ... I just meant to shoot the sonofabitch in the head. Him dying was between him and the Lord." RL Burnside.

"I won't waste my love on a nation" BRMC
Reddaz
Registered User
Join date: Aug 2007
502 IQ
#14
Quote by RubberSoul54321
Dunno about mud - I love the growl I get from mine.

By growl you mean an overdriven tone I presume? Thanks but not what I'm after dude, miles of clean low end head room is the name of the game!

Quote by slap-a-bass
i get so lost in these convos...really need to up my amp knowledge, but best advice you can have is play through each one and pick the one that sounds best.

Not gonna lie, had to look up GAS The thing about trying all these amps out is that there aren't that many decent music shops locally. It's horrendous trying to find any sort of choice for decent guitar amps, let alone decent bass amps! Plus cranking it up to what sounds loud in a music shop is far different than cranking it up at band practice, I've learnt that the expensive way!
Guitar:
Jackson RR3//Vintage VS6
Digitech EX7 //Bad Monkey//Digidelay
MXR EVH Phase 90//Black Label Chorus
Peavey 6505 Head//Crate G412SL 4X12 Cab

Bass:
Ibanez BTB 4-string
Peavey Tour 700 Head//410 TVX 4X10 Cab
Hear My Band
anarkee
oh the horror!
Join date: Aug 2006
3,136 IQ
#15
Quote by slap-a-bass
i get so lost in these convos...really need to up my amp knowledge, but best advice you can have is play through each one and pick the one that sounds best.


we were all there once...no worries. That's what's the forums for, asking these types of questions.

Youtube is a good place to at least get somewhat of an idea of what an amp will sound like. The other thing is to never buy from anywhere, internet or store that doesn't have a 30 day return policy. That way if it really doesn't work out, you can always return it.
RubberSoul54321
UG's Train Wreck
Join date: Dec 2005
845 IQ
#16
Finding new bass gear in Belfast is damn near impossible. If you don't want a Fender, line 6 or Roland you have to go used. Every shop I asked for something over 150 watts looked at me like I was mad. Pish is all I can say.
"I didn't mean to kill nobody ... I just meant to shoot the sonofabitch in the head. Him dying was between him and the Lord." RL Burnside.

"I won't waste my love on a nation" BRMC
slap-a-bass
Slapper of the bass
Join date: Oct 2007
1,032 IQ
#17
Quote by anarkee
we were all there once...no worries. That's what's the forums for, asking these types of questions.

Youtube is a good place to at least get somewhat of an idea of what an amp will sound like. The other thing is to never buy from anywhere, internet or store that doesn't have a 30 day return policy. That way if it really doesn't work out, you can always return it.



I can use this advice as im trying to buy my own bass amp in the near future. Does anyone have a problem with MarkBass? Specifically ones that range from 800 to 1100 US dollars?
sam_ofzo
Registered User
Join date: Mar 2007
360 IQ
#18
I've got a 121 mini combo and it's great. Never had any issues being heard in my band, even with 2 4x12 guitar stacks, a drumset, keyboard, trombone, trumpet and alt saxophone. And it's got a great DI, so that's rather useful for live situations.

There's another 1x12 extension cab on the way to make it into a mini-stack, but that's more for cleaner headroom and keeping 1 cab at the rehearsal space and 1 cab at home, so I only have to move the head.
Maruszczyk Frog 6 custom -> TC electronic Polytune-> Markbass CMD mini 121 + Markbass traveler 121H

Playing bass in Bamboo Avenue (Like us on facebook! )
EP out now!
Tostitos
caffeinated
Join date: Jan 2009
868 IQ
#19
Quote by slap-a-bass
Does anyone have a problem with MarkBass? Specifically ones that range from 800 to 1100 US dollars?

No problems at all. I have a Little Mark II (precursor to the LMIII and the other current LM heads) and I love it to bits. Nice and clean and transparent sounding, and it being so easily portable is wonderful.

They make a really solid product. They have a good range of amps and you shouldn't have to worry about quality being an issue.
Composite Aficionado


Spector and Markbass
slap-a-bass
Slapper of the bass
Join date: Oct 2007
1,032 IQ
#20
Quote by Tostitos
No problems at all. I have a Little Mark II (precursor to the LMIII and the other current LM heads) and I love it to bits. Nice and clean and transparent sounding, and it being so easily portable is wonderful.

They make a really solid product. They have a good range of amps and you shouldn't have to worry about quality being an issue.


oh thats good because quality is all I care about....not to mention these amps are extremely light. Welp, time to stop eating out and save money >:U
fatgoogle
Needs of cheese
Join date: Jan 2007
1,192 IQ
#21
Id check your current rig first. If a 700 watt amp through a 4x10 isnt loud enough, either somethings broken, your not using speaker cables or you have no idea how to use an EQ.

Here's a few things to try out.

First when listening to your amp, what sounds good when your on your own will generally not cut through in a band setting. Get right down and listen to the speakers when your with your band. Walk 10 foot away and listen again.

Begin with the eq flat and go from there. Only really small adjustments. For instance when im practicing, the bass and treble go up quite high, but when performing i cut the bass a lot and boost some low mids to help sit in the mix.

Have you tried getting your drummer to play lighter. When your rehearsing nothing should be loud. If you have ringing ears when you leave a rehearsal you were playing too loud and thats dangerous. Get everyone to tun down.

Defiantly check your rig first. If you cant make a 4x10 and a 700 watt head(well about 400 watts with the 4x10) then i cant imagine other bits of gear working better.
Yamaha TRB1006
Fender MIA jazz bass
Hora Hybrid double bass
Hartke lh 500
Ev 606L
Epiphone les paul
Reddaz
Registered User
Join date: Aug 2007
502 IQ
#22
Quote by fatgoogle

Have you tried getting your drummer to play lighter. When your rehearsing nothing should be loud. If you have ringing ears when you leave a rehearsal you were playing too loud and thats dangerous. Get everyone to tun down.

I take it you've never played in a metal band? EVERYTHING is loud, especially the drummer! Don't worry, most of us use ear plugs at all times.

Seriously though; I use Speakon cables (despite a jack-jack being equally as effective),
It's never been loud enough from new when nothing was broken,
I've tried every conceivable EQ setting over the past couple years with this amp; flat, bypassing the EQ channel, tiny adjustments, outlandish variations, and the only way I'm remotely audible in the band mix is cutting all my Lows and Low-Mids so that it sounds like a fart. Otherwise the speaker clips when I'm playing and I have to turn down the volume to bedroom levels.
This is also true when I use the 1X15 cab with and without the 4X10 cab.

A replacement rig is the only solution!
Guitar:
Jackson RR3//Vintage VS6
Digitech EX7 //Bad Monkey//Digidelay
MXR EVH Phase 90//Black Label Chorus
Peavey 6505 Head//Crate G412SL 4X12 Cab

Bass:
Ibanez BTB 4-string
Peavey Tour 700 Head//410 TVX 4X10 Cab
Hear My Band
fatgoogle
Needs of cheese
Join date: Jan 2007
1,192 IQ
#23
Your cutting the low-mids to make yourself audible???? thats crazy, mids cut through the mix. Make sure the contour is completely of, those things in general boost lows and highs and cut mids.

"It's never been loud enough from new when nothing was broken, "

Are you saying its now broken?

And yes i have been in metal bands in my recent youth. And yes turning everything down so you can hear everything clearly, hear all those mistakes etc. We were able to hear ourselves talk to each other to make sure of changes and whatnot.

EDIT: just did some quick googling came across this http://www.talkbass.com/reviews/showproduct.php/product/1554/title/peavey-tour-700w/cat/25

Im also seeing stuff about the Triac Resistor that if removed sorts out a lot of problems.

I used to have BTB 775 and seriously boosting the mids on that thing a tad could knock a tank over. One of the most powerful preamps ive ever used.
Yamaha TRB1006
Fender MIA jazz bass
Hora Hybrid double bass
Hartke lh 500
Ev 606L
Epiphone les paul
Last edited by fatgoogle at May 16, 2013,
Sudaka
Novice Bass Player
Join date: Sep 2008
1,096 IQ
#24
Quote by fatgoogle
Your cutting the low-mids to make yourself audible???? thats crazy, mids cut through the mix. Make sure the contour is completely of, those things in general boost lows and highs and cut mids.

"It's never been loud enough from new when nothing was broken, "

Are you saying its now broken?

And yes i have been in metal bands in my recent youth. And yes turning everything down so you can hear everything clearly, hear all those mistakes etc. We were able to hear ourselves talk to each other to make sure of changes and whatnot.

EDIT: just did some quick googling came across this http://www.talkbass.com/reviews/showproduct.php/product/1554/title/peavey-tour-700w/cat/25

Im also seeing stuff about the Triac Resistor that if removed sorts out a lot of problems.

I used to have BTB 775 and seriously boosting the mids on that thing a tad could knock a tank over. One of the most powerful preamps ive ever used.

BTB's preamps can be quite harsh, i give you that!

If evetybody is using earplugs, wouldn't it be better to just turn down? Sorry if it isn't like that, it's just that to me, it makes no sense
Quote by FatalGear41
When you break a bass string, that snapping sound is the sound of six dollars going down the crapper.



Sterling Ray 35
Hartke Ha3500 head - Gallien Krueger 212MBE cab
Tech 21 VT Bass
Zoom b2
Reddaz
Registered User
Join date: Aug 2007
502 IQ
#25
I know it's crazy! But that's the only way I can turn the pre/post gain loud enough to be heard without the cabs speakers clipping and distorting horribly. I've tried the contour at all levels, it's a very minor factor in the overall problem.

Yes it's now completely died last night from 2 years of playing at its volume limit and "red lighting" for the majority of playing time during a practice/set.

We tend to turn ourselves up to hear everything clearly! Otherwise nothing is audible above the drums. With earplugs we have to use the mics through the PA to communicate anyway.

Hmm might have a look and see if that Triac Resistor is causing the problem before I take it to a local tech. Thanks for that link dude.

I would like to point out that I have been leaning to thinking it's the cab which can't accept the wattage of the head and I'm inclined to replace the cab rather than the head (once the heads fixed!)
Guitar:
Jackson RR3//Vintage VS6
Digitech EX7 //Bad Monkey//Digidelay
MXR EVH Phase 90//Black Label Chorus
Peavey 6505 Head//Crate G412SL 4X12 Cab

Bass:
Ibanez BTB 4-string
Peavey Tour 700 Head//410 TVX 4X10 Cab
Hear My Band
Reddaz
Registered User
Join date: Aug 2007
502 IQ
#26
I'd much rather turn down if it was a viable option, but drummers don't have a master volume!
We kind of use ear plugs more as a precaution, our guitarist got tinnitus watching a gig in our teens and couldn't get rid of most of the ringing for over a year. Sod having that for life!

And before anyone asks, no the drummer isn't miced up, his kits just expensive and loud.
Guitar:
Jackson RR3//Vintage VS6
Digitech EX7 //Bad Monkey//Digidelay
MXR EVH Phase 90//Black Label Chorus
Peavey 6505 Head//Crate G412SL 4X12 Cab

Bass:
Ibanez BTB 4-string
Peavey Tour 700 Head//410 TVX 4X10 Cab
Hear My Band
fatgoogle
Needs of cheese
Join date: Jan 2007
1,192 IQ
#27
I never understand drummers, they need to learn about dynamics and how to hit there kit properly so they dont need to play loud to get a good sound.

Ive noticed the best drummers enjoy and put as much effort into playing a shaker or tambourine etc etc as they do with their Steve Gadd licks.

Sorry off-topic.
Yamaha TRB1006
Fender MIA jazz bass
Hora Hybrid double bass
Hartke lh 500
Ev 606L
Epiphone les paul
Reddaz
Registered User
Join date: Aug 2007
502 IQ
#28
Don't get me wrong, our drummer can play soft for clean/quite parts, but they're few and far between in our music. However I don't think I've ever seen a metal drummer tickle their kit for a whole gig and thought to my self "Wow they had a good sound!".

I find it ironic that you're complaining about hard hitting drummers, yet your avatar is of a band who's drummer is renowned and praised for that exact style of playing!
Guitar:
Jackson RR3//Vintage VS6
Digitech EX7 //Bad Monkey//Digidelay
MXR EVH Phase 90//Black Label Chorus
Peavey 6505 Head//Crate G412SL 4X12 Cab

Bass:
Ibanez BTB 4-string
Peavey Tour 700 Head//410 TVX 4X10 Cab
Hear My Band