#1
Topic. Is there a real advantage? I'm happy with a combo, then again I've never had a stack. But yet everyone (or atleast touring artists) seem to use stacks. Minus PG. Cause he wasn't weird enough already

Head + cab pro's


- You look cool I guess?
- More speakers
- Sound at ear-level
- Louder (usually)

H+C con's

- Expensive as all get out
- Too big for home practice (generally)
- More crap to haul around

Combo Pro's

- Cheaper
- Better for home practice (ala smaller)
- Lightweight (compared to stacks atleast)

Combo Con's


- Don't look as cool?
- Sound not at ear level?
- Less speakers?

I couldn't really think of anything else. I mean what's the big difference? Like I said, I'm happy with my combo, but I've never even played a stack.
#2
You can get some awesome Head + cab combinations. As in,a more customizable sound as you can change the cab, to a bigger one, open back, close back, etc without having to rebuy the whole damn thing.

Attenuators also can't work on Combos, at least to my knowledge.

A lot of amps don't come in Combo form, see: ENGL

I'm not really sure besides that.

Also, combos aren't better for room practice at a certain point. 6505 combo =/= good for bedroom practice, haha.
Blackstar HT-5

Agile AL-2000 with Chrome Hardware
#3
black keys/black crowes/ whitestripes/neil young, lots of other bands especially bluesier bands use micd up combos, depends what tone your after and style you play and size of gig. i personally like the sounds of combos and think they look cooler and love the sound. its a personal choice most big rock/metal bands use stacks
#4
Quote by CrushedCan
You can get some awesome Head + cab combinations. As in,a more customizable sound as you can change the cab, to a bigger one, open back, close back, etc without having to rebuy the whole damn thing.

Attenuators also can't work on Combos, at least to my knowledge.

A lot of amps don't come in Combo form, see: ENGL

I'm not really sure besides that.

Also, combos aren't better for room practice at a certain point. 6505 combo =/= good for bedroom practice, haha.


True, totally forgot about head/cab combos lol.

I think attenuators do work on combos, as far as I know PG actually uses a hot plate... But I could be wrong lol.

I feel the ENGL pain

The whole bedroom practice thing tho is more size than noise wise, you can always turn the amp down, I was just saying I know if I stuck a half stack in my room it'd pretty much take up 1/4 of my space lol.
#5
It has a lot to do with sound. More speakers can handle more volume without breaking up because it is being dispersed more evenly rather than everything being pushed through one or two speakers.
#6
A good tube half or full stack is hard to mimic, even if you have a miced modeling amp. Most artists use full stacks because they have enough money and they care about getting the absolute best sound possible. Not just whatever will get them by. And that's what most combo amps are for. Especially the latest ones. They pack a lot of watts into a solid-state amp that mimics a tube amp somewhat closely (but not quite) making it loud enough to get over a drum kit in a small to medium sized room. That's all it's good for unless you mic it. You might as well get a half stack if you're doing bigger venues. Use the modeling combo amp as a practice amp. A lot artists do that so they can have a lot of the whacky effects without lugging all the pedals and **** around.
mmmmmmhmmm

That's exactly what I've been trying to say.

Quote by munkymanmatt
brilliant
#7
Quote by HardAttack
A good tube half or full stack is hard to mimic, even if you have a miced modeling amp. Most artists use full stacks because they have enough money and they care about getting the absolute best sound possible. Not just whatever will get them by. And that's what most combo amps are for. Especially the latest ones. They pack a lot of watts into a solid-state amp that mimics a tube amp somewhat closely (but not quite) making it loud enough to get over a drum kit in a small to medium sized room. That's all it's good for unless you mic it. You might as well get a half stack if you're doing bigger venues.


They make tube combo's though. Can't that be just as good when it's mic'd? What's the difference between lets say my Bugera 333XL combo V a Bugera 333XL head with the matching cabs?
#8
yeah micin up a good tube combo sounds great, theres so many pro artists who use tweed deluxes and thats a combo that sounds amazing, cornford make some of the best sounding tube combos around.
you can get crap sounding stacks and crap sounding combos
you can get fantastic sounding stacks and fantastic sounding combos
and some combos cost more than a head and cab combined.
its all about the type of sound and tone you want to achieve
#9
Well asside from the ammount, possitioning or quality of speakers, you're going to have better quality electronics inside the box, not to mention much more durable equipment. These cabs usually have wheels and they're built like boulders. They're pretty hard to damage.

But here's the real deal with micing combos:

-They don't sound nearly as good at high volumes as a stack does.

-They still wont be anywhere NEAR the volume of a stack with a mic on it.

-A half stack without a mic will probably be louder than any combo amp with a mic on it unless it's ran through a very expensive and elaborate mic system which brings me to my next point:

-If you're going to mic a bunch of combo amps and bass amps (IE you're playing a show in a large room) and you want quality sound, you're going to spend so much on mics you might as well just buy yourself a half stack. Way less hassle.
mmmmmmhmmm

That's exactly what I've been trying to say.

Quote by munkymanmatt
brilliant
#10
i think it was said but i'll say it again. my take:

once you get to be a serious musician and especially if you gig alot, a Stack is better because either:

A. You are settled on your Cabinet and speakers but like to be able to swap or sell and buy different Heads as needed.

B. You love your Head and won't change - and take it everywhere knowing you can usually find a decent Cab at a gig, store, studio, friend, etc.

no?
#11
Quarter stacks are truly where it's at anyways.
Blackstar HT-5

Agile AL-2000 with Chrome Hardware
#12
Honestly, the only reason why I prefer a stack over a combo, as a gigging musician, stacks handle high volumes MUCH better then combos, combos tend to break up, especially with cleans at very high volumes, and you can't practice in your bedroom with a stack? Please, honestly, if it's that bad you can't turn it low enough most good amps have a 50/60W version, ex Almost every good Marshall head(Jcm, Jvm, Vintage Modern), Mesa(Single Rectifier, Mark IV), etc. If your tight on space just stick it in your closet like I do.
Live Rig:
Ibanez Rg 150R w/ Duncan 59s
Marshall JCM2000 TSL60 Head
Mark IV Combo
Marshall 1960a Cab w/ Vintage 30s
Ibanez RG1570 Prestige w/ Duncan 59s
Jackson SLSMG Soloist
Currently in Ontario, Canada.


#13
the advantage of combos are as i see it:
portability
cheaper (most of the time)
if you need more speakers just hook up a 2x12 cab and you pretty much have a half stack
#14
theres no best. My advice would be that if you have something with small wattage, like <30W then combo is usually best option. But once you start getting something over 50W then head and cab is usually better solution. Because the combo will be pretty darn heavy such as the orange rockerverb. And because the tubes are inside you cant put it on caster like you could be a cab. Anyway most of the time for professionals a head will be easy to gig with. Because you wont have to take you cab everywhere. Or if your unsure buy the head, and get a small 1x12 cab or 2x12 cab and stick some nice speakers in it. But one is not better than the other, its a matter of what you need and what you can manage with
Music is the holy grail, sod wine water and the blood of jesus