Genz Benz GBE 1200 help with picking an amp....

Discussion in 'Bass Area; The Bottom Line' started by gec78221, Oct 2, 2008.

  1. gec78221

    gec78221 Supporting Member

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    I know nothing about bass amps. My pops digs the GBE 1200. He's already shot down Aguilar amps in favor of the Genz. I want him to try other brands before he buys. What would you recommend? Did I forget to mention he's 62 & says this is his last one.Thanks,John
     
  2. the(sims)

    the(sims) Member

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    Genz Benz makes killer bass amps. What's wrong with buying that one?
     
  3. gec78221

    gec78221 Supporting Member

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    Nothing, I just want him to try other amps......
     
  4. the(sims)

    the(sims) Member

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    Gotcha. There are plenty of cool bass amps, that's for sure!
     
  5. gec78221

    gec78221 Supporting Member

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    Like what??? I no nothing about bass amps.
     
  6. the(sims)

    the(sims) Member

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    Sticking with Genz Benz, have him check out the new Shuttle series. Ampeg is a very popular choice with many different models (both tube and SS) to choose from. Gallien-Krueger RB series amps are great. SWR has a unique sound that lots of people like. I happen to have an old Fender solid state amp that I like.

    A lot of this will depend on what kind of music he plays, what type of bass he plays, and of course how much power he wants/what cabinet he wants to power. I'm guessing he's looking for a head, not a combo, since he is interested in the GBE 1200.
     
  7. gec78221

    gec78221 Supporting Member

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  8. The Golden Boy

    The Golden Boy Member

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    Those Shuttles are pretty badass. Don't let the size or the (under 5 pound) weight fool you. I A/B'd one with my 600w Seymour Duncan amp- it's actually a trifle "rounder" and has about the same amount of usable headroom.

    Unless, of course, he's just looking for a mother****er of a beast to slay with. As a rock and roll guy who primarily plays with loud drummers- a decent Solid State head over 600w will be more than enough for most anything. Heck, anything over 300w per cab is really overkill. I'm running an SWR SM-900 (generally) pushing 900w into a 4 ohm 2x15 cab. I don't think the master vol has ever been much more than 1/4 of the way up.

    At my age, with my bad back and my dislike for having to drag heavy gear around- I would seriously look into the GB Shuttle.
     
  9. phatster

    phatster Member

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    +1 on the shuttle,it truly is an outstanding amp....do Pops a favor!
     
  10. gec78221

    gec78221 Supporting Member

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    Will we went Gc, Sam Ash, & Century music. We compared the GB to SWR 900 & another amp that was yellow & black. We booth thought the SWR killed. GC had old stock SWR 900 for 1150... I ran search for SWR & found Golden boy woes. Any more thoughts?
     
  11. gec78221

    gec78221 Supporting Member

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    I know try & convince him of that. Old school, in his eyes bigger is better....
     
  12. gec78221

    gec78221 Supporting Member

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    What about an Eden 800? Is its tone similar to SWR?
     
  13. The Golden Boy

    The Golden Boy Member

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    Here's my deal with the SM-900... It needs to breathe.

    It's an awesome sounding amp- it's just that it really needs to have plenty of air flowing through it. Being in any ordinary rack, and running a 4 or 2 ohm load and it's going to cook and go into thermal.

    What I've done since the last time I launched a profanity laden bitchfest about it has been to take the rack apart, cut out a portion of the interior panel by the rack handle recess and drilled a whole bunch of holes into the exterior rack handle recess. The vent on the SM-900 is about even with where the rack handle is on a typical SKB style rack. So by enlarging the hole in the interior panel, and venting the exterior- it actually moves the heat out of the unit and out of the rack.

    It was a lot of work, a lot of headaches, a lot of embarrassment, a lot of errors- but that amp sounds great, and it runs cool for hours at a time.

    I'd look at cooling as a feature of whatever amp you're looking at. Venting from front to rear would be a really cool feature- like the Mesas or the newer Fender amps. That Bassman 800 looks pretty sweet from what I've seen of it, and if it sounds as good as the Bassman 400, I'd give that a good look-over. The Mesa Big Block 750 and the mPulse-600 are also really nice sounding heads, and cool from back to front.

    From what I've experienced with the Edens- they sound great as well, but there's a... "thickness" you can't thin out if you want. I guess it's part of that Eden sound, and lots of people really dig it. YMMV.

    You didn't like the Mark Bass amp?
     
  14. gec78221

    gec78221 Supporting Member

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    They were all nice sounding.. The SWR just had this really full sound, round mids, punch, & articulation.....
     
  15. The Golden Boy

    The Golden Boy Member

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    I've really softened on my anti- SWR stance over the past year or so.

    The SM-900 is a great sounding head for everything I've asked it to do.

    Subsequently, I won't say "don't buy anything SWR." But I will say- "if you go with SWR, do everything you can do to allow the amp to ventillate- above and beyond the realm of what you would consider common sense."

    I can chalk up a lot of the initial QC issues with my amp being made in the waning days of SWR Engineering. It is kind of an excuse because it was a year before they sold to Fender. The overheating stuff... I can only surmise that it was designed to not be in a rack- despite it's exterior design, size, faceplate and knob in the back. :confused:

    If you're really interested in the SWR, but are leery of overheating issues because of my posts- I'll take pix of what I've done with my amp and rack- and I'm actually pretty happy with it. Now. Finally. Seven years after getting it.

    My first thought is to tell you to look somewhere else- but it is a ****ing great sounding head.
     
  16. gec78221

    gec78221 Supporting Member

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    How can you tell what era the SWR 900 heads is? Is the overheating just in the fender era?
     
  17. testing1two

    testing1two Gold Supporting Member

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    I played an SM900 for several years and all I had to do to ensure adequate ventilation was to leave an extra rack space directly above the amp...never had a problem and So Cal gets pretty hot. It's a great sounding head.

    That being said, I feel that the majority of bass amps being made today have poorly designed and overrated power sections. When I sold my SM900, I went to a preamp/power amp setup and I couldn't believe how much more consistent my sound was and how much more headroom there was in the low end, especially at higher volumes. Jim Bergantino really helped school me on the subject, especially when it comes to power amps.

    To this day I still think that a Demeter HBP-1 preamp and a Crest CA9 power amp is an unbeatable rig with enough power to drive two of just about any speaker imaginable. And if you have the means and opportunity, do yourself a favor and try the Bergantino IP series self powered cabs, they're unbelievable!
     
  18. gec78221

    gec78221 Supporting Member

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  19. The Golden Boy

    The Golden Boy Member

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    I don't know when the design change was- but the amp used to vent out the top rather than the side.

    I haven't heard anything bad about the Thunderfunk amps.

    I've also never read of testing1two giving anything but the most informed information.
     

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