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Where is all this big gear being used?


jar546

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I think I went overboard when I purchased my new Ampeg PR-410HLF for use with my Hartke HA4000. I see everyone online, ok most talking about using 2-410s or an 810 or an 810 with a 115 etc.

 

I seem to be more than loud enough with the HA4000 only turned up to 4 of 10. I would think that most gigs are smaller places, bars for rock, classic rock, etc. and for the larger venues there is usually a PA system anyway.

 

My system is not my system of choice, it just kinda happened by being in the right place at the right time. Hauling that cabinet in and out a few times this week has taught me a lesson in weight and size.

 

I watched the bank that I recently auditioned for play in a few places and I have way more power than I need for where they play (even though I will not be joining them).

 

Is there too much overkill with all of this equipment or am I just too green behind the ears?

 

I would love to have a smaller, lightweight system that can easily handle my 5 string SR5HH yet loud enough when I need it.

 

Thoughts?

"The more I learn, the more I realize how much I don't know" by Me
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I agree.

 

For me at least, I've traded my big heads and cabs for two small Eden Nemesis NC210 250w 2x10 combos.

 

One for small gigs - and then a second stacked vertically with the second combo connected to the effects out on the first combo for large gigs.

 

Anything bigger than that, and I give a DI to the FOH.

 

Easy to carry, and super sound (plus built in fault tolerance on larger gigs because of having two combos).

 

:D

 

http://www.comcen.com.au/~eberbachl/pics/2_NC210.jpg

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About 6 to 8 months ago I bought an Epifani UL410 and a UL212 to go with the Stewart World 1.6 power amp and Ampeg SVP-CL pre that I have. It sounds ridiculous and the cabs are super light weight - both less than 60 pounds. I can bring one or both to any show depending on the size of the venue.

 

I'm beginning to wish I had never bought them. I finally tried (and bought) a Mesa Boogie M-Pulse Venture combo amp 3(?) months ago. It's pure insanity. It sounds incredible; better than anything I've ever played through in fact. It's also loud as all hell with tons of low end. I have brought it and nothing else to every gig I've done since. I can overpower the rest of any band I play with easily and the PA system in most clubs. I don't know if I'm ever going to use my 'big rig' ever again as there really doesn't seem like any point to it.

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I just did a tiny venue with my HA3500 and 4x10 with tons of headroom. At the medium-size venue I brought my 2nd 4x10. Probably could have gotten away with just one cab but with both I again had plenty of headroom. (I left my 2nd HA3500 at home because I wasn't running in stereo.)

 

And I'm just running a standard 4-string, so I don't have to worry about supporting those lower, power-consuming frequencies.

 

My band had been using a ~100 W PA for vocals only during rehearsals. It was being pushed to its limits and it sounded like it. Now we're using our stage PA and it is amazing how much better it sounds. Headroom is awesome. This example made that crystal clear.

 

After reading a lot of posts here I'd rather have a bigger, cleaner power amp so I would never have to worry about headroom. Then there's the matter of the preamp ...

 

Yes, 4x10s aren't exactly fun to haul around. (And yours weighs twice as much as one of mine!) I'm sure Alex and the others can recommend some nice 2x10s and 1x12s. I'll leave it to them to advise you if 400 W is enough to support a 5-string in "most" venues. I think SteveC has run every rig combination known to mankind. ;)

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Great picture angle Luke!

 

Having that extra for the over the cliff push is nice but for what price? I've got a SWR Redhead, love her to death but 80lbs. in a bulky box isn't the most user friendly.

 

I am off this week to check out the Venture and that M/B Walkabout.

 

Brocko

Don't have a job you don't enjoy. If you're happy in what you're doing, you'll like yourself, you'll have inner peace. ~ Johnny Carson
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One word....scalability.

 

I think the proper rig should be able to break down into smaller peices of itself. For instance...just carry in a 4X10 and head into smaller venues, but have the two 4X10s for larger venues. In fact, I'm thinking seriously about purchasing a 2X10 cab just for this reason.

Love God...Love People!

 

 

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I think some of the guys with the big stacks envision themselves playing the Enormodome.

 

And the truth is if you want a good bass sound and ample volume you need big, efficient cabs and a lot of power.

 

But "big" and "a lot" are relative, to the playing situation, the room, what other gear you're going up against, etc. (loud drummer, loud guitar players, etc.)

 

To Carpedebass's point, I go with a modular approach that works well for me.

 

Personally, I normally use a 550-watt head and two 2x10 cabs -- that's plenty to fill a room of 250 people, even competing with a loud drummer and a couple guitar players using 50-to-100-watt amps.

 

For smaller gigs, I cut back to one 2x10. For larger ones, I run a line to the board and let the PA do the work.

 

I also have a 1x15 cab I can add to the mix, but I haven't really needed it since I got the second 2x10.

"Tours widely in the southwestern tip of Kentucky"
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I understand your question. First, some have talked about headroom - you don't want to be in the position of having to turn to 11 all the time. And the number of speakers/cabs can have an effect on your loudness (as much as the power of your amp does).

 

The next part of the question (from most on the forum's standpoint) is the "carry" question. That involves transportation, storage, and gigs. See Dave Sisk's signature for my thoughts on this.

 

I think for most people doing rock, a 4x10 and head is OK, though not the only option. If your 4x10 is especially heavy, then that's going to wear you down.

 

I play in a fairly large/loud band that almost never has PA support. I use an amp that's 500 watts at 4 ohms, and I use two 8 ohm cabs with a 12" in them. I couldn't play much louder than I am now (not that I want to), and would be fine with a 3x10 instead - for my rock gigs. When I play in church, or in other situations, it's great to have a 14 pound head and one cab (39 pounds).

 

Tom

www.stoneflyrocks.com

Acoustic Color

 

Be practical as well as generous in your ideals. Keep your eyes on the stars and keep your feet on the ground. - Theodore Roosevelt

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The posistions of the volume control has nothing to do with how much headroom you have left. This is a common mistake made by lots of people. Your amp can put out it's maximun output wattage with the volumne control very low say 3, or 4.

 

Amps have lots of voltage gain so that you can get maximun output with very soft or low voltage sources.

 

8-10'S Are wonderfull to play thru, yes they are overkill for anything but metal or very loud rock bands, in most bars.

 

The only way to know when you've used up your amps power reserve is to listen for distortion.

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We'll at this point, I pretty much use my one 4x10 at 75% of gigs. Occasionally, I've added my 2x10 into the mix as the medium size venues. However, there have been a couple of benefit shows at large venues (outdoors and indoors) where this other 4x10 I bought would have been in need.

 

My current plan is to use the 4x10HLF as the main cabinet and throw the 4x10HEN in a needed.

 

The 2x10 cabinet is going to be retired and used as part of my practice/backup rig.

 

As far as carrying everything around....I've made an investment in a furniture dolly that helps a lot. Stairs still suck though, but hey...! That's what lead singers are for!

 

And Jeff, if you are looking to get rid of that cabinet...I'm only a PM away. :)

 

 

 

Tenstrum

 

"Paranoid? Probably. But just because you're paranoid doesn't mean there isn't an invisible demon about to eat your face."

Harry Dresden, Storm Front

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Ahh, the big gear discussion...

 

My - big and only gear - is a Genz Benz Neo-Pak and NeoX212. It sounds nice, fills a pretty good room and is relatively easy to haul. I'm not sure if a 2x12 qualifies as big, but the GB is a fairly large cab for a 2x12. The trade off is a pretty full sound.

 

I would like to carry less, and as veterans of the forum will confirm, I have done many ill-advised things over the years trying to get the "magical mix" of size, weight and room-filling ability. I am trying to stay content with what I have. It works for all my gigs, and is overkill for some.

 

I have never had the Master past 1/2, and I know I have a little head room as I have cranked it up and there was more to give and the 2x12 took it well.

 

I'd still rather have a combo and call it good. I have tried a few, and really, they would work for all but the loudest gigs. I am always "present" in the PA, but we don't always have subs. Not a huge deal to me, but som epeople like to have the rumble. My 2x12 doesn't rumble the room, but it does help fill the void.

 

I used a Line6 Lowdown 150 in the store at the last rehearsal. It was OK. Kept up fine but didn't have a lot left over.

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As far as carrying everything around....I've made an investment in a furniture dolly that helps a lot. Stairs still suck though, but hey...! That's what lead singers are for!

 

Is THAT what lead singers are for? Thanks for clearing that up.

 

:D

 

As to the furniture dolly, what he said -- 30 bucks as Home Depot. Get one -- your back will thank you.

"Tours widely in the southwestern tip of Kentucky"
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I eschewed the dolly because of steps. My trip to Home Depot yielded a composite handtruck with pneumatic (blow-up) wheels. I can use it up and down stairs - and it's a breeze when we're talking a curb or a few steps.

 

What ever floats your gear!

Tom

www.stoneflyrocks.com

Acoustic Color

 

Be practical as well as generous in your ideals. Keep your eyes on the stars and keep your feet on the ground. - Theodore Roosevelt

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I'm beginning to wish I had never bought them. I finally tried (and bought) a Mesa Boogie M-Pulse Venture combo amp 3(?) months ago. It's pure insanity. It sounds incredible; better than anything I've ever played through in fact. It's also loud as all hell with tons of low end. I have brought it and nothing else to every gig I've done since. I can overpower the rest of any band I play with easily and the PA system in most clubs. I don't know if I'm ever going to use my 'big rig' ever again as there really doesn't seem like any point to it.

 

I keep hearing great things about that Mesa Boogie combo amp...is it 600 watts into the 2 internal 12's, or 320 watts into the 2 internal 12's?

 

AH! Nevermind...I just saw the sidebar on the page. You can get it either way, but it's 600 watts into the 2-12's by default (which I'd assume is the model you bought).

 

Dave

 

Old bass players never die, they just buy lighter rigs.

- Tom Capasso, 11/9/2006

 

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I think I have found the perfect "compromise" amp, at least for myself and in my opinion. Although it really IS too heavy, it fits in any situation, any venue. I guess I love it for its versatility as well as its undeniable guts - that would be my Mesa M-Pulse Big Block 750 with the Mesa Powerhouse 4x10 cab. We also have one of those Home Depot goofy furniture dollies, but hot damn, they get the job done. We also have two goofy young wishie-wannabe roadies who don't mind sore backs. I have two other lighter, smaller amp combo's, but they don't cut through quite enough. Practice with them - yes. Play out - no. At least I can turn down the Mesa and it still sounds fat & hungry.

Just my opinion, of course.....

Oh yeah, I forgot to tell you: I'm a lady, barely five feet tall, and the darn amp weighs pretty much more than I do.

 

Happy thumping, people!

"Don't let my size fool you - I'm a little lady with a real big badbass bass attitude!"

 

"He's not the sharpest tack in Teacher's chair; but a pain in the ass nonetheless!"

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I have a NC-200 which is an older version of the NC-210. I love the tone and it's good for the really small places. For just about everything else I use my ol' Peavey Mebabass with a home made 2x10 and a home made 1x15. I almost never had to turn the mega past 4 on the post-gains and around 4 ond the pre-gain. I usually run it biamped but I sometimes run it full range if I need to cut thru a bit more. I DI my bass thru the PA for every job mainly for some extra low end boost.

Lydian mode? The only mode I know has the words "pie ala" in front of it.

http://www.myspace.com/theeldoradosband

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I don't own a car and live in New York, so weight is a big factor for me. Unfortunately, I also like having tons of headroom, so for several years the rig I could afford gave me plenty of headroom and was reasonably light, but still uncomfortably heavy to carry on the train all the time.

 

I recently bought a MarkBass SD800 and the sound, power and super light weight make me giddy with joy.

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I think the operative issue here is that yer all a bunch of wussies.

 

Aw, relax.

I kid. I kid because I love.

 

My bands have always been about the big rigs, but then, perhaps I've always played music that just doesn't seem to be "right" without big amps and high wattage. All of my bands traveled to gigs in "the band van," so fitting gear in vehicles and carrying it was/is always a communal effort. Sure, an 8x10 is a big, heavy son-of-a-beeyotch, but it's not unbearable when two burly gents tackle it. Especially if one of them is also deadddd seexxayyy... like me. Duh.

 

In the past, I played guitar and bass with a hardcore/metal band (bass in the recordings, often), and, let's face it... regardless of how "efficient" the right 2x12 bass rig can be with the right amp, it's not gonna cut the mustard on a hardcore stage, even if it sounds great... because it just doesn't look as bad-ass as a pair of stacked 4x10s or an 8x10 or a 4x10 and a 1x15. Our bassists always had something like one of these--it was pretty much a requirement. If they didn't have a rig like that, they borrowed mine.

 

I also played bass (and guitar) in a few less-heavy bands, and I maintained the "big rig" philosophy simply.

Why?

Well:

A.) We still carried gear communally in the van.

B.) It's always better to have it and not need it then to need it and not have it.

C.) It sounds frickin' awesome.

D.) Because I could.

 

Presently, I'm playing guitar in a heavy stoner-rock band with an insanely loud bassist, drummer and another guitarist. The bassist has a '70s-era Ampeg V4B bass head and an 8x10 rig.

 

The bass alone prompted a guy from a band in our rehearsal complex to stop by one night and ask what the F we were using for amps, because he was afraid his spine was going to fall out of his a**hole from the sheer volume.

 

Add a drummer playing a set of '70s-era Ludwig Vista-lite drums, and another guitarist with a similarly vintage Ampeg head and 4x12 cab. Then put my Marshall to the mix, and we're so loud that our volume would actually make lesser men sterile.

 

With us, it just takes the edge off a little.

 

But I digress...

 

As I mentioned earlier, part of the point is, indeed, aesthetic--those big amps just look cool... and they sound that way, too.

 

\m/

Erik

"To fight and conquer in all your battles is not supreme excellence; supreme excellence consists of breaking the enemy's resistance without fighting."

--Sun Tzu

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I agree.

 

For me at least, I've traded my big heads and cabs for two small Eden Nemesis NC210 250w 2x10 combos.

 

One for small gigs - and then a second stacked vertically with the second combo connected to the effects out on the first combo for large gigs.

 

Anything bigger than that, and I give a DI to the FOH.

 

Easy to carry, and super sound (plus built in fault tolerance on larger gigs because of having two combos).

 

:D

 

http://www.comcen.com.au/~eberbachl/pics/2_NC210.jpg

 

That is a pretty good idea. Practice, small and larger gigs all covered, no racks, easy to haul, seems to make sense.

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I play thru my Peavey MkIV + 4x10 rig for 95% of the gigs I play. If the gig is in a large room or outside I add my 1x15 cab but that is mainly so I can aim it at my drummer. I also have an Ampeg combo that I use for rehearsal and for the rare very small gig.

 

As I've said before, I think some of this is affected by where you live. Here in Tucson it is extremely rare for venues to have P.A systems and none have backline.We all have our own vehicles and in almost all cases we can pull right up to the stage door/loading ramp. We have dollies to move the PA gear and most of our cabs and cases have casters.

Nothing is as it seems but everything is exactly what it is - B. Banzai

 

Life is what happens while you are busy playing in bands.

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I'm using this combo for all my gigs. It's heavy (over 100 lbs), but the sound is beautiful, it's very powerful and it's just one piece of gear. Sometimes, if the stage is very large and the monitoe system is crappy, I'd also take a small 15-inch-speakered, 150W combo and place it next to the drummer, facing him.
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I do what quite a few others do: I have two Acme Low B-2's (2x10) and bring just one for the smaller places, both when I need the power (or a monitor). Having the two cabinets and being able to rotate the top and bottom in different directions really helps my drummer on bigger stages, too.
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