Buy a Swart AST or TK Imperial ?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by motokev, Mar 26, 2012.

  1. motokev

    motokev Member

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    which one should I get, Swart AST or TK Imperial

    I like:

    -nice smooth breakup at moderate volume
    -fender type reverb
    -big full tone out of a 1x12
    -blackface and tweed
    -Top Notch Build Quality

    ADDED:
    -Works well with tube screamer type pedals !!!!!

    both seem to offer about the same thing... reverb, tremelo, beautiful tone

    which one :facepalm
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2012
  2. DGTCrazy

    DGTCrazy Moderator Staff Member

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    Honestly.........they are both fantastic amps. I prefer the AST because it's only 39lbs, and the Trem is simply unbeatable. I use the Nite Lite's Direct Out to pair up to a '66 Princeton Reverb. Heaven!
     
  3. GAT

    GAT Gold Supporting Member

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    I've had both. The TK can sound a bit strident when pushed at lead volume. The Swart sounds richer to my ears.
     
  4. motokev

    motokev Member

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    yeah, the swart looks appealing
     
  5. TRS1

    TRS1 Supporting Member

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    Ive owned the AST and found it lacking in many areas, it was one of the boxiest amps ive played. The imperial is one of the best amps on the planet. I am a fan of quality cleans and the rhythm channel of the imperial is huge round and clear. When turned up the imperial has a smooth feel and an incredibly responsive overdrive that made the Swart sound small and fizzy The tremolo is understated and very linear i'd say its on par with the legendary tremolo of my King Cobra. Go for the TK... seriously
     
  6. riffmeister

    riffmeister Gold Supporting Member

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    Comments based on my experience with the Imperial.
     
  7. Csgband

    Csgband Silver Supporting Member

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    Do you want it for gigging, recording or both?
    I have owned both and still own the Swart,
    For my taste the Swart won.
    There is not a huge amount of clean head room at gig volume.
    When it is miked it is amazing, a Les Paul can push it hard.
    But it does sound amazing and is very responsive to touch dynamics.

    I liked the lead channel of the tone king but found the rhythm channel not to my liking.
    It felt very stiff and sounded very hard.
    I ended up using only the lead side.

    The Swart is just an amazing amp.
    I prefer the original AST with the upgrade back panel over all the other versions.
    I have owned them all.
     
  8. goodandswarty

    goodandswarty Member

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    i know you're talking about the imperial, but i had a metro that i also ditched in favor of my swart ast mkii. both are amazing amps... but i just can't get over the versatility, the weight and the tone of the swart.
     
  9. pedalcr8z

    pedalcr8z Supporting Member

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    I've owned both. Returned the Swart after a few days as it sounded very small and boxy which doesn't meet your "big full sound out of a 1x12" request. The TK fits the bill.
     
  10. archtop

    archtop Member

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    Tone King Imperial is lighter at 30lbs
     
  11. Gear-Junkie

    Gear-Junkie Supporting Member

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    Two great amps but they sound very different from one another. Based on your likes you may prefer the TK, it excells at Fender BF style clean tones and reverb, and sounds big for a little 1-12. The Swart, on the other hand, has about the best tweed style cleans and smooth tweed breakup your going to hear out of a new production amp.
     
  12. joshatatlasstands

    joshatatlasstands Member

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    won't go wrong with Swart IMO
     
  13. ieso

    ieso Member

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    I have a Swart. Amazing amp but it's probably not the best match for what you're wanting. With the Swart so much depends on the guitar and boxes in front of it and if you want to keep up with a drummer, etc. I have no idea about the other amp.
     
  14. motokev

    motokev Member

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    hmmmm, very interesting.......
    I think the TONE KING IMPERIAL would be the best fit for me
    I like blackface and tweed....
    I read where people were doing a mod to get rid of the brightness, man.....
    just turn down the TREBLE !!

    Oh, I forgot a very important criteria

    -Works well with tube screamer type pedals
     
  15. artguy47

    artguy47 Ol' CuRmUGeOn Gold Supporting Member

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    I'm also have similar interests. Can't find a decent BFDR for less than I can buy a TK, Swart Pro(mkII is close in price), thinking more and more about Vintage Sounds.

    Any suggestions along these lines is appreciated. Want to stay around $2K or less. The VSs seem to be a bit heavier. (Bad back)
     
  16. motokev

    motokev Member

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    I've herd good things about Vintage Sound Amps, top notch components. But, I think the TK and AST offer more. Like the TWEED channel on the TK. Nice breakup on the AST. Hmmmmm, I wish I could try the swart
     
  17. Csgband

    Csgband Silver Supporting Member

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    I posted earlier about my thought have had both amp.
    As I said for me the swart was better but having read more of the post I have to recommend the Carr Sportsman.
    It really is and amazing little amps.
     
  18. oldguitar

    oldguitar Member

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    I haven't played either of the two amps mentioned.

    I did own a Vintage Sound though. It was a well built amp, but I thought it broke up way too early. Thought something might be wrong with it, so took it to a tech who couldn't find anything wrong with it. The tech liked the way it sounded. Just goes to show we're all different in what we like.

    I liked the Lil King better than the VS. But the one I like best is the Allen Sweet Spot, and I have owned several. I would highly recommend you check out the Allen, if you haven't already.
     
  19. motokev

    motokev Member

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    ok, I got a Fender Super Champ XD, $150
    awesome
    saved myself $1,900

    the sound guy told me to TURN IT DOWN !!

    OO
    >
    -
     
  20. motokev

    motokev Member

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    asdas
     

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