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Amp or pre-amp power amp?


rub_a_dub_stylie

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I`ve been toying lately with the notion of upgrading my amp situation from my current SWR Workingmans 4004, which is badass for a lower price amp, to something a little bigger/better. I have really been leaning towards the tube pre-amp sound and think full tube on bass is a bit over kill not to mention hard on the back. And with that........have at it you maniacs. ;)

 

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Nothing you do in life is ever wrong, some things just aren`t exactly right. Or some crap like that.

www.richfieldmusic.com

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rub-a-dub-dub-3-men-stylin'-in-a-tub:

 

We need some more info in order to help you out.

 

1. What kind of speaker cab(s) are you using w/ what power handling?

2. How much $$$ do you have to spend?

3. What kind of gigs/venues do you play?

4. What does the 4004 not do for you that you wish it would, and hope a new amp or preamp-power amp combo will?

5. Do you have any size/weight limitations in mind?

 

Also, I did a quick search of this forum and found the following thread: Click here to read it.

 

I bet if you did a more thorough search than I did, you would find several prior threads with useful information.

 

If money were no object, power amps I'd consider would be the Lab.Gruppen fp series :thu: and the Peavey DPC1400X :thu: because of their low weight and high power. Preamps I'd consider would include the Kern IP-777, the Alembic F1-X, the discontinued SWR Grand Prix and the SWR Interstellar Overdrive, and the Avalon U5. I'd also experiment w/ some of the Raven Labs offerings as well as the Aguilar, EBS, and Demeter offerings. The Ashdown preamp owners on the forum dig theirs. Ideally I'd want a 1U unit.

 

Preamps are very subjective, in my opinion, in terms of what tone and features are preferred. Some like 'em transparent, some like thick tube character, some like overdrive features, some want built-in compression or a crossover...and so on and so forth. The trick is to find the one that fits into your bass-power amp-speaker cab puzzle and gives you the tone and features you seek.

 

Oh, did I mention the handy-dandy search feature yet? ;)

 

Peace,

--sweet'n'low

spreadluv

 

Fanboy? Why, yes! Nordstrand Pickups and Guitars.

Messiaen knew how to parlay the funk.

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If you like your SWR amp but need more power, the simplest solution is just to buy a bigger SWR amp. They all have tube preamps and solid-state power amps.

 

I've been using my SWR SM-400 for over ten years and only about once or twice have wanted more power. Before that I had a Yamaha preamp and a Crown Microtech 1000, yes folks, that's 1000 watts. I ever needed that much power. I never will.

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Thanks Guys,

 

I currently play through a workingmans 4x10 cab and my sound is pretty sweet. However, with the 4004 head, it is a little drab. Kind of like the difference between digital recording and good ol` 2 inch tape. Lots of oomph no personality.

 

My room mate plays an old SVT `70 something, I think(all tube). And I love the warm tone, however he also has a Mesa Boogie Walkabout that has a tube pre in it and it sounds just as good with a fraction of the weight. So my problem (not really, if you think about it, new equipment is never a problem)is I`m upgrading everything including speaker cab probably to 2 Goliath Jr`s. And I`ll need more power than my current head can give. Also, the tone thing is an issue. I find myself playing so many different types of gigs I dont want to limit myself to just one specific sound. I was leaning toward the pre amp power amp thing because it seemed like I got more wattage for the money, if I buy a used power amp that is. So anyways, there you have it.

 

Lates All

Nothing you do in life is ever wrong, some things just aren`t exactly right. Or some crap like that.

www.richfieldmusic.com

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I've just switched from head to pre/power. There are guys around here with much more experience and thus better able to advise on gear, but I can give you the perspective someone who's just switched.

 

So far I've no regrets. The main disadvantage is some extra fussiness in setting up, and you'll need a rack case and should remember that when comparing costs.

 

The advantage is that in future it'll be much easier to experiment or upgrade - I just need to change my pre-amp not the whole head. A Demeter was outside of my budget, for example, because I'm changing my whole rig, but at some future point I may consider one. I've also thought about buying a Sansamp at some point so that I can experiment with rock v hi-fi approaches. I also get the impression I will have a wider range of choices, because most amp manufacturers make a pre-amp but not all preamp manufacturers make a head.

 

I take Jeremy's point about 400 watts being sufficient for most normal purposes, but my QSC PLC 1602 weighs only 21 lbs and the combined cost of that plus my used Grand Prix was in the same ball park as a good 500 watt head. The extra power does no harm and may be useful in some situations. I've just bought a pair of Acme cabs, which I feel wouldn't have been an option if I'd bought a 400-500 watt head.

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