Louder: 40W tube amp or AxeFX and QSC K10?

Discussion in 'Digital & Modeling Gear' started by weshunter, Feb 21, 2012.

  1. weshunter

    weshunter Supporting Member

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    I'm trying to get an idea of how loud my Axe rig will be before I get a K10. Right now I have a 5e3 which isn't loud enough and an Omega HRDeville, which is probably too loud (65W) when it's turned up loud enough to sound good.

    I had a 40W Omega HRDlx that was a good gig volume. It seems like the 1000W K10 should be plenty of volume for a gig, but I'm trying to get a feel for just how much volume I'm talking about with one of these things. I don't play loud, but I do like to be able to play loud if I need to.

    I'd rather get the K10 than the 12 since it's lighter, has better dispersion, and won't be as bassy.

    What do you guys think? Axe + K10 = loud enough?
     
  2. aleclee

    aleclee TGP Tech Wrangler Staff Member

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    I have an Omega HRDx and also a K8 that I use with my AxeFx. The FRFR rig can push way more volume than the Fender.
     
  3. burningyen

    burningyen Vendor

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    My RP355+K10 would definitely overpower my old Bruno CT45 1x12 combo, especially if we're comparing clean headroom.
     
  4. Axe-Man

    Axe-Man Member

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    Well, i directly compared my 11R and K10 to my 50w poweramp and a 100 w Metro build at a prac studio and the difference was HUGE.

    The K10 was not even in the running.

    Not even close.
     
  5. weshunter

    weshunter Supporting Member

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    so Axe-man, you're saying the 50W power amp and cab was a lot louder than the K10?
     
  6. weshunter

    weshunter Supporting Member

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    wow -- even with the 8? well that's pretty much exactly what i'm comparing it to, so thanks!

    any downside to the FRFR rig for you?
     
  7. aleclee

    aleclee TGP Tech Wrangler Staff Member

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    IMO, the biggest downside to FRFR is the cost/quality ratio. While $1K will get you any of a number of world class guitar cabs, it's not that far above the starting point for what I'd consider "good" FRFR (which IMO includes the QSC K series).

    No big deal for me but with FRFR, it's hard to get the "bark" of a present cab in the room. Last fall I got to A/B an Axe II with the Atomic FRFR cabs with a Bogner Ecstasy. They were darn close but the FRFR didn't quite have the in-room presence that the 4x12 did. When we ran the AxeFx through a power amp into the Boggie 412, it would have passed a double blind test.

    Speaking of 412s, while a FRFR rig can get stoopid loud, it's not necessarily going to do so in the visceral way that a guitar cab does. I believe it's largely due to the FRFR's greater dispersion. On the plus side, you don't need to worry about on-axis volume killing anything foolish enough to sit in the beam. :)
     
  8. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel Silver Supporting Member Supporting Member

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    I Had problems getting Good volume out of the 11R and K10, No problems with the Axe and K10.(LOUD)
     
  9. Axe-Man

    Axe-Man Member

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    Yes it was much louder. The 11R had the mixer pushed, ch volume maxed and I ran it into the K10 and the power amp this way also.

    Trust me, the K10 was as far as it could go volume wise and the power amp was much bigger, louder and sounded hugely better.

    The 100w Plexi was laughably louder. Crushingly loud TBH but you don't need this level of volume in the real word.

    The K10 would be loud enough to go against a smaller tube amp as it has good headroom but my cleans on the 11R>50w power amp rig were still much louder...the driven tones...louder again and I (personally) felt that I always needed a little more (just a little) headroom with the poweramp too.

    The K10 isn't actually 1000w as it has two 500w amps. It's prob more like 570w and it doesn't seem to be particularly musclebound kinda watts either!

    For reference I had an issue with my K10 and got it serviced and it checked out A1 for headroom/volume etc.
     
  10. burningyen

    burningyen Vendor

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    Axe-Man, you had the Mic/Line switch on the K10 set to Mic?
     
  11. weshunter

    weshunter Supporting Member

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    so you do think the K10 is a good FRFR, right? I'm thinking it will run me about $600 or $650.

    I really want to try the K10, but I also really don't want to waste my money if it's not going to work for gigs. I play funk and classic rock and sometimes grateful dead like jams - never anything high gain. it seems like a lot of folks are using the K10's with the Axe FX's, I just don't know how many of those folks are playing gigs.
     
  12. aleclee

    aleclee TGP Tech Wrangler Staff Member

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    In the interest of full disclosure, I haven't tried the K10, only the K8 and K12. I actually preferred the sound of the K8, though I wish it had the K10's monitor tiltback feature.

    I do think it's a good FRFR. It has a bit of a mid scoop but I find it preferable to the Verve 8ma, another popular FRFR that I've directly compared it with. The 8ma had a mid hump that makes it a more effective monitor (in terms of highlighting the vocal freqs it was probably designed to monitor) but I found it kind of annoying for use as backline. YMMV, of course. :)

    Please note that I used the term "good". When it comes to FRFR, stuff in that price range isn't likely to be great, at least IMO. I've gotten plenty of compliments on the tone I've gotten with my K8s but I'm also aware of the frequency and phase issues that everything in that price range is going to have. As a result, I have a feeling that I'll be upgrading my FRFR later this year (most likely the Atomic CLR wedges) and returning my QSCs to conventional PA duty. While there's no question that the QSCs sound good, I'm inclined to explore just how much I can get out of my rig...within certain budget constraints. I recently upgraded my headphones to cans with much better freq/phase response and have been impressed by their clarity. That's not to say that the old $20 phones sounded bad. Quite the contrary. Like I said earlier, I'm just trying to explore some possibilities.
     
  13. 02Singlecut

    02Singlecut Supporting Member

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    I finally got around to taking all my stuff to a buddy's new studio this weekend. I'm slowly moving to using my Ultra live and since I've now got all the pieces, no more waiting. I took my ( been sitting new in the box for 2 years) QSC K12 and my buddy has a RCF NX 12SMA. I barely cracked the gain on my K12 and was shocked how LOUD it is!!!! Both of them lacked nothing volume wise!!! The QSC is good, but if you're really serious about a FRFR powered wedge....Get the RCF NX 12SMA. It's a serious PRO level piece of gear! ;)
     
  14. Axe-Man

    Axe-Man Member

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    I ran it every which way to get the max volume.

    There is no question that the thing is loud when used as a monitor and louder still when on a stand but then you get alot of harsh high end beamed right at your ears (which I hated).

    I don't think it's the answer when you are playing against a non mic'd tube amp for example...any decently pushed half stack worth it's salt will be more than just a problem (you will be totally buried) but it's still a bloody loud unit for such a tiny thing. I didn't like the sound of it for guitar no matter how I ran it and how much I tweaked (HD500, Eleven Rack, tube preamps>11R etc etc)
     
  15. burningyen

    burningyen Vendor

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    I've never ran it against a pushed 1/2-stack, so you may be right about that. In my Floyd tribute band where we have 2-3 vocalists singing at a time, keys, drums, bass and 2nd guitarist playing a 1/2-stack played clean with pedals, the K10 can easily keep up.
     
  16. Rod

    Rod Tone is Paramount Silver Supporting Member

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    For a short time I was running a K10 with an HD300. When it got loud it wasn't pleasing to my ears the way my 1/12 Randall modular 50 watt amps are. I. Will probably buy one of those new monitors that Jay Mitchell designed,and am on the wait list for an AXEII. I know the QSC s are popular, but to my ears they really don't sound very good for classic rock and blues rock jam band stuff in a live band setting. At home it sounds great though.
     
  17. weshunter

    weshunter Supporting Member

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    thankfully, i'm not playing with anybody who would bring a 412 cabinet out on a gig, so i'm not worried about that. I'm talking about moderate bar/club band levels where I would be micing my amp anyway. and I'm actually not playing with any other guitar players most of the time anyway.
     
  18. scorched

    scorched Member

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    I have 2 K12's and a Fryette 2/50/2 amp with two 2x12 cabs. I'm not into stoopid loud. I got that out of my system decades ago. But the 2 K12's are much louder than the Fryette flat out. They stay cleaner, too. The tube amp begins to compress and break-up (hell, it's a tube amp - thats what they do!)

    They both sound very good - just different. (Oh, and I play acoustic, bass guitar and keyboards into the K12's also.) A tube amp will never approach that kind of versatility>
     

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