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Ashdown EB12-180 vs Ampeg BA-115...vs. Nemesis NC-210 combo...


Gruuve

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Hey folks:

 

I've got an Ampeg BA-115 combo (15" driver + tweeter, 100 watts) that I use for church rehearsals. It's almost loud enough, too big and bulky, tweeter is too harsh (man is it metallic! It's very annoying, to me anyway!), it's too heavy, I overall don't like it's sound that much (at least not compared to my full rig, Bergantino HT-322 cab and SWR SM-900 head). Anyway, you get the picture...not exactly my favorite thing to play through, although it is adequate. That said, it's one of the few combo's for less than $500 that produces sufficient volume and chest thump to feel like a "real" bass amp, IMHO, even though the tonal characteristics may not be exactly what I'd like.

 

I liked the size and weight of the Ampeg BA-112 better, but it just didn't crank out enough volume and B-string punch for my taste. The BA-115 doesn't fart-out unless I pretty much crank the lows (which I occasionally do!)

 

I was just reading the specs and searching this forum for info on the Ashdown combos...more powerful (180 watts), has better specs, lighter weight, costs less new...how do they sound in comparison to the Ampig BA115? I'm trying not to listen with my eyes, but the specs and price on this guy are really compelling. If you crank the lows and volume, does the 12" combo fart out on an open B-string? How about the 15" combo?

 

I could see easily doing a switcheroo here, since I'm not a huge fan of the Ampeg signature sound. How would you characterize the sound of these Ashdown Electric Blue combo's? Somewhat more flat response than the Ampig's, or no?

 

Any commentary appreciated!

 

Dave

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

- Tom Capasso, 11/9/2006

 

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Dave.

I know you are trying to reduce the weight but you should take a look at a Peavey TNT.. I have played my 5 through that amp many times and it works out real nice. You can throw a few wheels on it and you'll be all set.

I think they are $450ish new and 160 watts.

the new version has a 15 and a tweeter..and it cranks

 

Good luck

 

Dan

www.danielprine.com

 

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I know that sm900 isnt the biggest monster, but the 322 is. Why dont you just geta beg 12 to go with the head to smaller practices. Or better yet, maybe go for something that can replace the whole system and add portability.

 

The accugroove 110s or 112s should do the trick. And I've heard a lot of good things about schroeder cabs when it comes to volume and tone.

 

You could take on cab and your head to rehearsals, and tote an extra cab for larger venues.

 

The ea combos always interested me, and they give you the option of adding their line of powered extension cabs, so you coould add 200 watts in addition to an extra speaker.

 

Jut my 2 cents, chances are it won't work for you, but if it does, you would have one sweet sounding portable rig.

Hiram Bullock thinks I like the band volume too soft (but he plays guitar). Joe Sample thinks I like it way too loud (but he plays piano). -Marcus Miller
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I am slowly (emphasis on "slowly" here) working my way toward a more modular rig that I could do exactly what you've mentioned with. However, I need something in the meantime. See my previous thread on "combo reviews" or something like that...I've tried out quite a few combo's...can't believe I never stumbled across an Ashdown in person though!

 

Dave

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

- Tom Capasso, 11/9/2006

 

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I have an Ashdown MAG 210 that I bought new for $450. There is also a 115 version. This amp is 310 watts and sounds wonderful. I returned my Ampeg of the same model because of the same complaints. Check the Ashdown MAG series of combos... :thu:
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Dave, I got you PM but I thought I'd reply here in case anybody cares about my opinion. ;)

 

I actually have the 150W, which are the old generation. The 180W was out, but the 150W was so much cheaper that I couldn't resist. Anyways . . .

 

I can't say that I absolutely love my combo. I bought it knowing that I loved Ashdown preamps, but perhaps their cabinets aren't up to the same standard. The sound is good, just not great. With some eq'ing I can get close to any tone I want though. Of course, I was using my 970W stage rig to play around the house before I bought it, so I was probably just spoiled. ;)

 

That being said, I do like the sound of it much better than the Ampeg BA115 or other similar combos that I tried. Plus I liked that it had a DI, which I don't think(?) the BA115 has.

 

But if I had to do it all over again - and it was going to be for gigging (which mine is not) - then I'd go the modular route.

 

Good luck, and let us know how much you go over your initial budget. :thu:

Ah, nice marmot.
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Thanks, Scoot! Do you have the 12 or the 15? So the drivers seem to have enough excursion to not fart-out too easily? (With a 180 watt amp paired to it, I'd actually expect it to do alright...)

 

The Ampig BA115 does have an XLR out (BA112 only has a 1/4" out), but it's very noisy for whatever reason....I generally don't use it.

 

Originally posted by Scoot:

Dave, I got you PM but I thought I'd reply here in case anybody cares about my opinion. ;)

 

I actually have the 150W, which are the old generation. The 180W was out, but the 150W was so much cheaper that I couldn't resist. Anyways . . .

 

I can't say that I absolutely love my combo. I bought it knowing that I loved Ashdown preamps, but perhaps their cabinets aren't up to the same standard. The sound is good, just not great. With some eq'ing I can get close to any tone I want though. Of course, I was using my 970W stage rig to play around the house before I bought it, so I was probably just spoiled. ;)

 

That being said, I do like the sound of it much better than the Ampeg BA115 or other similar combos that I tried. Plus I liked that it had a DI, which I don't think(?) the BA115 has.

 

But if I had to do it all over again - and it was going to be for gigging (which mine is not) - then I'd go the modular route.

 

Good luck, and let us know how much you go over your initial budget. :thu:

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

- Tom Capasso, 11/9/2006

 

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For what it's worth, I like the Ampeg B100R better than the BA-115 -- just as I prefer the B50R to the BA-112.

 

Portable combo? And you have a SWR head that you like? Consider the Workingman's combos. The SWR Wkmn 12 or 15 might work for you and they're often available at reasonable prices on the used market.

 

Another option are the Eden Nemesis combos. Definitely lightweight with big sound.

 

It's probably worth searching some of the old threads some more. I feel like there have been plenty of discussions that would help you get more info, with input from some reasonably minded folks who haven't posted here in a while.

 

Peace.

--SW

spreadluv

 

Fanboy? Why, yes! Nordstrand Pickups and Guitars.

Messiaen knew how to parlay the funk.

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I almost feel compelled to urge you to just get a Berg 112 cab and bring your head to gigs. I played through one of those last weekend and was very happy with the overall sound. I understand that you want to go with a combo though, just wanted to add my .02.
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Originally posted by NUTT:

I almost feel compelled to urge you to just get a Berg 112 cab and bring your head to gigs. I played through one of those last weekend and was very happy with the overall sound. I understand that you want to go with a combo though, just wanted to add my .02.

I don't need it for gigging, just for church rehearsals (although that feels like a gig from lugging this BA115 around!) Nutt, I'm certainly considering just that...I just haven't seen a Berg HT112 or Berg HT210 used yet! Maybe soon. Even with that, I still don't mind having a decent combo...even if it's just a backup.

 

SW, yeah, I've definitely gone through the threads! There's plenty of info...in fact, there's a pretty big post from me late last year where I gave everyone a very subjective review of quite a few combo's that I tried out. I just still can't believe that I never encountered an Ashdown anywhere!

 

Ya know, one thought that always hits me...I don't understand why more mfg's don't offer the option of an integrated two-space rack in some of their smaller cabs. You could buy the cab and just plug whatever reasonable head into it that you want. I know there's at least one mfg who does this, although I don't recall right off who it is...but pretty much all of them SHOULD offer this option, don't ya think? Instant combo, with your choice of head! :thu:

 

That said, I guess you could always just bolt a 2-space rack onto a small cab, but where's the fun in that? ;)

 

Dave

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

- Tom Capasso, 11/9/2006

 

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Originally posted by Dave Sisk:

Thanks, Scoot! Do you have the 12 or the 15? So the drivers seem to have enough excursion to not fart-out too easily?

I have the 12er. 12-150 is the model number to be exact. And you are correct, no flatulence.
Ah, nice marmot.
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Originally posted by Scoot:

Originally posted by Dave Sisk:

Thanks, Scoot! Do you have the 12 or the 15? So the drivers seem to have enough excursion to not fart-out too easily?

I have the 12er. 12-150 is the model number to be exact. And you are correct, no flatulence.
Thanks, man...this definitely sounds like one I need to check out. I may have to do that by just buying one sight unseen (uh...sound unheard? ;) ), but I'll patiently wait to snag it used so there's little loss to resale if needed...

 

I appreciate the posts, folks! This is just such an awesome group of people! I really enjoy all our conversations here on this forum...

 

Thx,

Dave

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

- Tom Capasso, 11/9/2006

 

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Originally posted by Dave Sisk:

I am slowly (emphasis on "slowly" here) working my way toward a more modular rig that I could do exactly what you've mentioned with.

How about an Acme Low-B2? Your SM900 will sound great with it, if my SWR Grand Prix and 900W/ch amp is anything to go by. A bargain at $480! ;)

 

Alex

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Hey Alex:

 

A Acme LowB2 is definitely one of the candidates on my used list. In fact, I almost had one off Ebay a few days ago... :mad: ...but it got snatched out from under me... :freak:

 

Dave

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

- Tom Capasso, 11/9/2006

 

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A light combo that totally kicks ass is the Nemesis NC210. I sold mine for only $400 (stupid, stupid move :cry: ). 225w, Eden speakers, great DI, compressor, semi parametric mids, aural enhancer knob thingy; less than 60 lbs.

"Start listening to music!".

-Jeremy C

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Originally posted by 73 P Bass:

A light combo that totally kicks ass is the Nemesis NC210. I sold mine for only $400 (stupid, stupid move :cry: ). 225w, Eden speakers, great DI, compressor, semi parametric mids, aural enhancer knob thingy; less than 60 lbs.

Hmmm...that's also lighter than the Ampig BA115. How well does it handle a low B with the low EQ at about 3pm or so? Do the 10's fart-out? How would you characterize it's sound-vibe? I may be able to find one of those locally...

 

Dave

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

- Tom Capasso, 11/9/2006

 

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Originally posted by 73 P Bass:

A light combo that totally kicks ass is the Nemesis NC210. I sold mine for only $400 (stupid, stupid move :cry: ). 225w, Eden speakers, great DI, compressor, semi parametric mids, aural enhancer knob thingy; less than 60 lbs.

I've seen nothing but good things about the Nemesis 210...I've found a used candidate and I'm working out the details right now. I found a very used Nemesis 212 in a pawn shop over the weekend...I played through it and it sounded great even though it was pretty beat up. They pawn shop was asking $400, but it's about the same size as a 410, so I decided to pass.

 

The NC-210 seems to be about the sound equivalent to the Ashdown MAG 250, which seems to go for a little less used than the Nemesis, but it's also bigger and heavier. I'm thinking the Nemesis NC-210 might be just the ticket. I guess it depends on how new they are, but from a quick search of completed auctions on Ebay, they seem to go for around $325-350...or that's what I saw. As with most things, it's a matter of supply and demand, and will often change over time... ;)

 

Dave

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

- Tom Capasso, 11/9/2006

 

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Originally posted by Dave Sisk:

[/qb]

Hmmm...that's also lighter than the Ampig BA115. How well does it handle a low B with the low EQ at about 3pm or so? Do the 10's fart-out? How would you characterize it's sound-vibe? I may be able to find one of those locally...

 

Dave [/QB]

Dave, I don't play a 5 so I couldn't tell you. When I did crank the bass control to 3 o'clock it was thunderous, but tight.

"Start listening to music!".

-Jeremy C

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I have the Ampeg BA 210se. It's heavy, but the wheels and the side pop-out handles help.

 

The amp models are ok and the effects are handy. I've played in small rooms, big clubs and outdoor gigs with it.

 

I havn't played the 115 but I would have disconnected the the tweeter.

 

In most NYC bar gigs, the rooms are acoustically-unfriendly. My last gig, I had to set up in a cramped corner. The floor was hardwood, the walls were brick, and the ceiling was copper. I had to roll off my treble a bit.

 

I wound up facing my amp into the back wall angled towards the drummer. Good results.

 

Try that one in church if the treble is too ballistic.

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SWR 2x10C does not fall within your price ($700) or weight (86lbs). However, it's got the 4004 head and an extra rack space. You can remove the 4004 but it has no top cover as they secure it to the top of the cab. That would give you three rack spaces on top of a 210 cab.
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  • 3 weeks later...

Cool beans! I just snagged a 2002 Nemesis NC-210 off Ebay. $375 shipped, but it needs one new $65 10" driver. Considering it's about $40-50 to ship it, this is equivalent to getting it for about $400 total, which is a fair used price.

 

I'll have a very slightly used Ampeg BA-115 for sale very shortly if anyone is interested!

 

Dave

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

- Tom Capasso, 11/9/2006

 

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congratulations. i have long been a fan of the NC-210. i ended up finding an HT-112 used for $425 and being able to borrow an amp until i had the money to put together a pre/power rig. i still have a desire to own an NC-210, though, so count me envious.

 

before any of that, i had looked into buying a used BA-115, but when i played it i came to the same conclusion as you -- that the tweeter didn't sound very good unless it was turned off. i would like to play through a B-100R some day, as well, but in reality i'll buy another HT-112 and another bass before any of that.

 

i hope you enjoy the NC-210 as much i have in the past.

 

robb.

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Originally posted by robb.:

i would like to play through a B-100R some day...

Actually, I ran across a used Ampeg B-100R in a local store (www.conn-signmentmusic.com), asking price was $400, but he'd probably let it go for $350 or so. I played through it, and I have to say, true to Dr. Sweet Willie's words, it does indeed sound better than the BA-115. No tweeter, but it was surprisingly bright for a 15 but still had plenty of thump. I don't recall seeing an external cabinet jack on it, so maybe the internal driver sees the full 100 watts. I seriously considered picking it up, but it weighs the same as the BA-115 (just a little smaller), so I decided to hold out for a Nemesis NC-210 or an Ashdown EB 15-180.

 

Btw, Michael Conn at www.conn-signmentmusic.com deals in used gear and in high-end basses. He's got quite a collection in the store. Check out the web-site...he's very knowledgeable, started out as a consignment store, but somewhere along the way decided to specialize in basses. Thumbs up on that! :thu:

 

Dave

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

- Tom Capasso, 11/9/2006

 

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