Jump to content


Please note: You can easily log in to MPN using your Facebook account!

Another lightweight amp option


VLH

Recommended Posts

Use two Phil Jones Bass "Briefcase" Amps to play in stereo, 100 watts each, 28 lbs each in a compact package. I e-mailed the builder and they said the Bob James is using them. $599 with shipping. I think a lighter model may be set to debut at NAMM 07. Anyone heard these with keyboard? I'm on the lookout for the lightest best sounding option (have read all the posts on this, including WDL's latest on the Acoustic Image Focus w/Accugroove. The option below, if using two, would give you stereo.

 

http://www.philjonesbass.com/PRODUCTS/SPEAKERS/Briefcase.htm

 

Vince

Link to comment
Share on other sites



  • Replies 11
  • Created
  • Last Reply

I e-mailed the manufacturer last week. They wrote to me:

"One of the reason we use the 5" driver, is its ability to be "full range", handling the highest frequencies to the low. Because of this character, although the Briefcase is marketed as a bass amp, it is actually tried on and proven to be very good on a variety of instruments such as guitars and particularly on keyboard. The sound is very clean...Bob James of Four Play uses the Briefcase with the keyboard."

 

I'm thinking that if a great jazz player like Bob James is using it, it must be good--but like judgments all equipment, it's a matter of context, taste preferences, and intent.

 

I get to St. Louis now and then and if I can drop in and test one out, I'll let people know. If anyone out there has heard one of these, please post something on its actual sound/volume (vs specs, which are so arbitrary).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

(a bass perspective but I'm sure you can apply it to keys) I heard a clinic the other day featuring Chuck Rainey playing and singing through PJs. He played wonderfully of course but the sound wasn't that great - I'd like to put it down to the acoustics of the room as I like the concept of the Phil Jones stuff and I thought it was more expensive than that.

I use an Acoustic Image Focus Head (350W for 6 pounds weight - 600W@ 4 ohms) nad the lightest cab (with a good sound) I could find which was an Epifani UL112- 30 pounds I think?? My back thanks me for it.

 

lightweight bass rig thread

 

http://usera.imagecave.com/feilik/19-12-05_0906.jpg

 

http://usera.imagecave.com/feilik/29-04-06_1803.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Phil,

Thanks--that's a little bit of info at least.

By the way, some of the upright bassists around hear (St. Paul-Mpls, MN) are using the Acoustic Image Focus with one or two Acme B10s depending on the room. The Acmes are avaialble direct from the mfr for $400 and weigh 28 lbs. Next time one of them is nearby, I'm going to try out his system w/my keyboard and my electric vibe.

I'm in no hurry to make a decision on amps and will try to chk the PJB out next time I'm in St. Louis--my goal is NOT keep buying new equipment (right now I'm using one of the few surviving GK keyboard amps--just like the small 24-lb GK bass amps with a tweeter mounted over the center of the woofer--good volume and clean but a little "boxed in" in tone). It certainly seems like a lower cost option (and more conve) than the AI plus cabinet, but if sound is sacrificed to much for weight savings...oh well, guess it's never a perfect world.

Vince

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Maybe Bob James uses them in the sense that they sent him a free pair. I can't imagine the context in which he would actualy be using them.

Harry Likas was the Technical Editor of Mark Levine's "The Jazz Theory Book" and also helped develop "The Jazz Piano Book." Harry spends his time teaching jazz piano online and playing solo piano gigs.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by Jazz+:

Maybe Bob James uses them in the sense that they sent him a free pair. I can't imagine the context in which he would actualy be using them.

Especially since he's mostly playing on a grand piano.

Hamburg Steinway O, Crumar Mojo, Nord Electro 4 HP 73, EV ZXA1

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Re: Bob James (and setting the record straight here)

Bob James has done plenty on electric instruments. I don't know whether the manufacturer sent him a free pair or not--seems unfair for Jazz+ to insinuate that they had done that, unless Jazz+ knows for a fact that the manufacturer had sent him freebies. I got the info only when I asked specific questions via e-mail regarding my intended usage. I can imagine many uses for these little combo amps, and my original question is whether anyone has heard them--to which Phil, as a bassplayer gave a lukewarm appraisal, possibly faulting room acoustics. They do seem like possibly a better option than the Yamaha Stagepas, which has not gotten great reports (including from Jazzwee, I think), or the very light (18 lbs) Acoustic Image combo amp, which has good reports except that the downfiring woofer can make it easy for others to hear you but hard for you to hear yourself; these PJB combo amps have an advantage in that they at least can be aimed at your head.

 

At any rate, if either Jazz+ or Jazzwee or anyone here has Bob James's contact info, I'd gladly contact him, get a report, and paraphrase it here. I don't think it's fair to insinuate things unless you know them, but you also bring up (albeit in an unfair way) the possibility that the manufacturer is making a claim that needs to be checked out. I'd request that you not make insinuations, and for my part I'll try to find out more about the product itself (the goal here anyway) and report back here.

 

My quest is to find a truly lightweight stereo option for small clubs, playing jazz and light latin; I play both keyboard and vibes, the latter sometimes acoustic and sometimes w/pickups and sometimes acoustic with microphones. The combination makes me more marketable but is a real hassle for hauling and setup, which is why I'm scouting ultralight solutions.

 

Recommendations so far have included the Traynor K4 (at 50 lbs in a single lift, not a great option, but in the running); various combinations of motion sound equip; the Acoustic Image Focus 2R series III w/one Accugroove 112 OR one or two Acme B10s (not a stereo option)(Very pricey); Yamaha Stagepas (relatively cheap); two AI combo amps (VERY pricey). Using two PJB Briefcase Amps (moderately pricey for two)is the latest option I've uncovered, after reading other postings here about the suitability of bass amps as keyboard amps.

 

By the way, I just got an e-mail back from the manufacturer--the lighter weight PJB briefcase option is in develoment, but is at least 12 months away.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's just that Bob James goes from high end studios to large concert stages. I don't see him needing to carry around powered 5" speakers. Somebody as famous as Bob james gets free gear from every company without asking.

Harry Likas was the Technical Editor of Mark Levine's "The Jazz Theory Book" and also helped develop "The Jazz Piano Book." Harry spends his time teaching jazz piano online and playing solo piano gigs.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...