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Flemtone

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So, I buys a MarkBass LittleMark II amp at GC in Manhattan, I asks 'em 'bout rack ears, they says to me they sez, "We can't get 'em". I sez, "Swell" and walks away disgruntled-like.

 

So I checks online - nowhere in the US are they available, apparently. I sees lots of places in Europe that has 'em, but the shipping across the Blue is twice that of the ears themselves.

 

What to do, what to do...

 

Any idears?

 

(pardon the colloquial accent - I'm feeling whimsical this morning.)

 

I LOVE this amp, and don't want to scratch it up and bang it around in transportation, so rackmounting seems the right thing to do. I don't really have the apparatus to fabricate a set of rackmounts, however. This is probably the only downside of MarkBass gear - they don't make a cover for the amps or the cabinets (except a 'bag' that looks more like a laptop bag) and the rack ear issue. Looking at the pix of the amp in several locations, the rack ears are already attached, so one would think they were included with the amp head, but not in this case. Grrr.

 

It's a conspiracy, I tells ya!

 

peace,

Tim from Jersey

Play. Just play.
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Have you looked for ears for something with similar dimensions, like Eden or Avalon gear? You may find something that's a perfect fit, but redrilling wouldn't be much work if the metal is there.

 

Or a universal rack shelf.

- Matt W.
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The store that sold the amp -- a GC, no less -- can't get the ears for you?

 

This is why I don't shop at Walmart-style music stores like GC.

 

You might try contacting the manufacturer directly - - don't know about Markbass, but Eden for example is real good for stuff like this.

"Tours widely in the southwestern tip of Kentucky"
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I tried to go the machine shop route for a similar project; unless they guy in the shop is a buddy, it would be cheaper to pay the shipping across the pond. Almost free, though, if you "know the guy" or have similar skills.

 

But since racks are heavy and bulky and you paid $$$ to eliminate such, I'm suprised you're not all over the laptop-bag thing like the Genz-Benz tiny amp has.

Things are just the way they are, and they're only going to get worse.

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Congratulations on the purchase.

 

I have an Eden WT-330 that came with rackmount ears. However, I keep it in a soft case made by Eden. I think racking a little amp would take away some of the charm of how nice and tiny it is.

 

However, if you want a real case for it, I have what I think is a better solution. Pelican makes a great case that you can personally configure the foam to your needs. I use it for microphone, amp, and camera gear.

 

The LittleMark II is roughly 11"x11"x4" (rounding up). How about the Pelican 1430 Toploader ?

 

http://www.pelican.com/cases/cases_1430_flash/v1.jpg

 

It only weighs 6 lbs., which is less than a decent molded rack, but offers much better protection. Also, it is water-tight and floats when loaded with less than 60 lbs. Never know if you going to do a show on a riverboat, right? :) Plus, you can get it in black, orange, yellow, green, or tan.

 

You can just yank the head out of the case when you gig. Plus, it is cheap. With the foam, you can get it for $63 at B&H Photo.

 

Just my thoughts.

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Originally posted by Flemtone:

So, I buys a MarkBass LittleMark II amp at GC in Manhattan, I asks 'em 'bout rack ears, they says to me they sez, "We can't get 'em". I sez, "Swell" and walks away disgruntled-like.

 

So I checks online - nowhere in the US are they available, apparently. I sees lots of places in Europe that has 'em, but the shipping across the Blue is twice that of the ears themselves.

 

What to do, what to do...

 

Any idears?

 

(pardon the colloquial accent - I'm feeling whimsical this morning.)

 

I LOVE this amp, and don't want to scratch it up and bang it around in transportation, so rackmounting seems the right thing to do. I don't really have the apparatus to fabricate a set of rackmounts, however. This is probably the only downside of MarkBass gear - they don't make a cover for the amps or the cabinets (except a 'bag' that looks more like a laptop bag) and the rack ear issue. Looking at the pix of the amp in several locations, the rack ears are already attached, so one would think they were included with the amp head, but not in this case. Grrr.

 

It's a conspiracy, I tells ya!

 

peace,

Tim from Jersey

Hi Tim (and everybody!),

 

I'm Peter Murray from Markbass and I'm jumping in here to respond to any questions or comments any of you have about our products.

 

There's no conspiracy here Tim, but it is definitely something that needs to be sorted out and we're working on it at the moment.

 

We hope that very soon you will be able to purchase Little Mark II rack ears and amp bags from Guitar Center.

 

I will keep you all posted on this, but feel free to PM me for an update anytime.

 

Thanks, and glad to be here! :thu:

 

Cheers,

Peter

Peter Murray

International Promotion, Marketing and Artist Relations

Markbass

www.markbass.it

www.myspace.com/markbassamps

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Really? "We working on and we'll get back to you" isn't a particularly satisfactory answer.

 

Hey Peter -- why don't you just have the factory ship the guy a set of ears and be done with it? They should have come with the unit in the first place.

"Tours widely in the southwestern tip of Kentucky"
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Originally posted by jcadmus:

why don't you just have the factory ship the guy a set of ears and be done with it?

Sounds like the reason is because they don't have them, eh? It is called stock, and sometimes stock is out.

 

Originally posted by jcadmus:

They should have come with the unit in the first place.

Fascist. That is like saying ever amp should come with a cabinet. Or every car should come with gasoline. Or ever bass should come with a STICKER .
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Originally posted by jcadmus:

Really? "We working on and we'll get back to you" isn't a particularly satisfactory answer.

 

Hey Peter -- why don't you just have the factory ship the guy a set of ears and be done with it? They should have come with the unit in the first place.

This isn't an isolated issue. If we need to take care of a whole bunch of customers it makes more sense to ship a whole bunch of rack ears than just one set. I'll get myself in more trouble if I give a specific date and there's a delay--that's not really fair. If there's specific information I will supply that. But at the moment I have no firm details, just that it will happen, and that we are working on it!

 

The reason it's not included is because the amp bag is a popular choice, and that doesn't require rack ears. So not including rack ears allows us to keep the price of the amp itself as low as possible and give the customer the choice of whether they want to rack it or bag it.

 

Hope this helps to clarify.

 

Thanks,

Peter

Peter Murray

International Promotion, Marketing and Artist Relations

Markbass

www.markbass.it

www.myspace.com/markbassamps

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Originally posted by Peter Murray Markbass:

Originally posted by jcadmus:

Really? "We working on and we'll get back to you" isn't a particularly satisfactory answer.

 

Hey Peter -- why don't you just have the factory ship the guy a set of ears and be done with it? They should have come with the unit in the first place.

This isn't an isolated issue. If we need to take care of a whole bunch of customers it makes more sense to ship a whole bunch of rack ears than just one set. I'll get myself in more trouble if I give a specific date and there's a delay--that's not really fair. If there's specific information I will supply that. But at the moment I have no firm details, just that it will happen, and that we are working on it!

 

The reason it's not included is because the amp bag is a popular choice, and that doesn't require rack ears. So not including rack ears allows us to keep the price of the amp itself as low as possible and give the customer the choice of whether they want to rack it or bag it.

 

Hope this helps to clarify.

 

Thanks,

Peter

Peter, this is, of course, the perfectly logical and reasonable answer. Thanks.

"For instance" is not proof.

 

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Wow, thanks for all the responses, crew!

 

True, using a bag would make more sense for weight considerations, but we're pretty low-rent in my band, so gear gets transported in the back of a pickup truck (yee-haw!), so rain can be a problem. Also, I wanted more protection in case it happens to fall down the stairs at our local watering-hole. That would kinda suck.

 

Maury, we're on the same wavelength. I just picked up a small adjustable-foam metal briefcase at Rondo's in Union that will probably do the same as the one you recommended (except float). I have enough room for the head, my tuner, the cables and maybe my mic (if I arrange it accordingly). Thanks for the B&H info.

 

Peter, thanks so much for weighing in here! I'll definitely be looking, in the future, for the ears, in case I go for any more rackmount gear. Could you slap a post in the group here when Markbass and GC get their stock issues worked out? I'd truly appreciate it.

 

Again, thanks all!

 

-Tim

 

(btw, Rondo's is moving out of NJ, so their guitars and basses are half-off their original price - I picked up a 5-string fretless Brice (who?) active/passive for $130. Cheap beater guitars R Us)

Play. Just play.
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Originally posted by Flemtone:

Peter, thanks so much for weighing in here! I'll definitely be looking, in the future, for the ears, in case I go for any more rackmount gear. Could you slap a post in the group here when Markbass and GC get their stock issues worked out? I'd truly appreciate it.

 

Again, thanks all!

 

-Tim

Will do, Tim!

 

Have a good weekend.

 

Peter

Peter Murray

International Promotion, Marketing and Artist Relations

Markbass

www.markbass.it

www.myspace.com/markbassamps

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Peter - thanks for helping out.

 

Flemtone - I have a bag for my similarly-sized EA amp and love it. Much better than a rack case. Maury's recommendation and your eventual solution will work well.

 

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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  • 2 months later...

Tom Capasso and I made a trip to the NYC GC this past week. I specifically went to taste some MarkBass. The only amps and cabs we tried were by MarkBass.

 

I tasted the SD800 head with a 4x10 w/ HF horn and with a lightweight Traveler 2x10. I also tried the 2x10 combo alone, w/ a 1x15 extension and with the same Traveler 2x10 cab. I played mostly a Mexi Fender J 5-string, but also tried a Modulus Flea 5.

 

The SD800 is a great little head. Lots of power, lightweight. Straightforward EQ and features. Sounded great with the 4x10 and the 2x10. The 2x10 is a surprising little gem -- only 33 lbs with well-placed handles. Super easy to carry (yes, TC and I tested what it was like to carry it). Lots of punch and good volume for a 2x10. Not huge low end, but certainly adequate.

 

The 2x10 combo was also nice, and adding the 1x15 cab added some more girth. Adding the 2x10 maintained the punch.

 

I'll let Thomas chime in to say more. We had a great time playing through these rigs, and I was impressed. Maybe I can be a bit more detailed about the sonic experience later.

 

Peace.

--Dub $$

 

spreadluv

 

Fanboy? Why, yes! Nordstrand Pickups and Guitars.

Messiaen knew how to parlay the funk.

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Sorry for the delay - family business took me out.

 

Yes, we had fun !!

 

The simplified EQ was nice - parametric for the low and high mids, but just a bass and treble controls for the "outer" bands.

 

There is a filter knob that acts something like the SWR Aural Enhancer in that it moves toward the EQ "scoop". I didn't do a side-by-side, but the knob seemed to have different tuning than the SWR (or GK Contour) knobs as I remember them. It was not drastic, and seemed helpful when Willie went into slap mode. It wasn't really necessary though, as every type of playing style sounded very nice (we didn't try a pick). There was a speaker emulator knob that seemed to add a bit of dirt - kinda like turning up an "Ampeg" knob. Again - musical, not extreme. We did not do much in the way of high volume testing, so I can't say (yet) how this effect would translate to a stage, but in a small room or for recording it was nice.

 

The 4x10 sounded great, wasn't too heavy, but is physically large. One interesting feature is that the tweeter pad is not mounted on the jack plate in the back. It's mounted on the side of the cabinet and the control is flush to the side of the cab. This means it doesn't extend out in the back. It looks very sturdy, but I'd still make sure I had the cabinet oriented so that I wasn't putting anything on top of it.

 

The 2x10 was the surprise. Unlike Willie, I thought it had plenty of low end. I also walked away about 20 feet to see how the sound carried, and it was strong and full.

 

I did plug in an Epi EB0 and pound some serious low end. The amp and cab did well with that particular sound. The J sounded nice, and the whole rig was very articulate.

 

The "fun" aspect of these cabs is the yellow cone material (assuming it's Kevlar, but haven't looked). When you play, you can really see those guys bouncing around.

 

The weight and manueverability is fantastic. When Willie was playing the 800 with the 4x10 and said that the cab might be too big, I walked over to the 2x10 and picked it up from the top of a stack - no problem. It's got a huge side handle, and because it's so light and short (top to bottom), it wasn't awkward at all. I easily flipped it up on top of the 4x10 to plug it in, then later put it down on the floor (standing up, one speaker above the other). Sweet. And the SD800 is too light to believe.

 

I found that I quickly ignored the stark yellow of this equipment, but could imagine that it might be an issue for some circumstances.

 

Nice equipment! And nice to hang out and play.

Tom

P.S. For a little while, a nearby guitarist was testing a Marshall with lots of distorted tone. He wasn't that obtrusive, but it was interesting because when I was playing - Willie pushed my button and said "how about some Cactus?". I launched into one of my favorite riffs while pumping it a bit. The guitarist stopped playing for a few minutes and turned around. I'm not sure how much of that was my playing, but some of it was the volume and sonic assault. The amp held up under guitar noise!

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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  • 1 month later...

I was visiting my parents on Saturday, and I happened to go into Guitar Center in Arlington Heights, IL. First off, I think Markbass may have rectified their inventory issues, because there was a lineup of almost all of their amps and cabs there. I'm not in the market for an amp, but I saw a sweet used Ric and a Warwick Corvette Pro, so I took the oppotunity to patch into this amp:

http://www.markbass.it/prodotto_dett/thumb/thumb_67.jpg

 

And this cab:

 

http://www.markbass.it/prodotto_dett/thumb/thumb_26.jpg

 

Wow, did it sound nice! The head puts out 500W @ 4 ohms and 300 at 8. The cabinet is 6 ohms.

 

I thought the UI layout of the EQ was poor...the 4 gains should all be in a row and the frequency knobs should be up top if you have to go with that format. The compressor was very musical, although at really high ratios it sounded terrible (but this is not uncommon with built in compressors). At more conservative ratios, the tube made the compression break up nicely.

 

I was most surprised by the VPF (preshape filter, cut only) and VLE (A speaker emulator, but it's essentially a 250-20k cut) knobs. I'd like to know the bandwidth of the VPF because it was a true "multiple sweet spot" change. You could really change the amps personality with those two knobs.

 

I didn't even check the price, but if I actually played out on bass, I wouldn't hesitate to get this combination of head and cab. It was a really nice sound.

"For instance" is not proof.

 

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