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Reason Bambino, Reason Grande, or Reinhardt Mini-Me?

Mr.Woody

Member
Messages
1,582
So i'm down to these 3.

Mini-me:
Pros: I've always wanted one, i already have one Reinhardt amp and am very happy with it, they would look nice together, having the reinhardt cab with reainhardt speakers would probably bring out the best in this amp, Sorta Brand loyal here and will probably regret not getting it.

Cons: Hard to find, Only come in head unit where i'm really looking for a combo (grab-n-go style), doesn't look quite as nice as the other 2, not as versatile as the other 2.

Bambino:
Pros: Speaker Simulated Line out (supposedly pretty amazing!) which would be sooooooo nice, Very versatile (which is nice considering i will be selling my 2 american style amps to buy one of the 3), Nice 2 watt setting for home use, Looks nice, Grab-n-go (in combo form), Super nice guys at Reason (already answered several questions)

Cons: not sure if it will be as loud as i'm looking for when in jam sessions or loud concerts (but i DO still have my Reinhardt @ 18 watts)


Grande:
Pros: Enough volume for what i need, 6V6 tubes (my favorite!), Global master volume (for power tube breakup, pre amp breakup or anything in-between at low low volumes), good looks, Very versatile, Grab-n-go (in combo form), Nice 10 watt setting for home use, that demo with the black strat on youtube is KILLIN ME!!!!

Cons: No line out (not that it's a deal breaker), heaviest of all 3, most expensive of all 3 (at least new)


Anyone with good input (positive or negative)? Experience with the amps?
Also, i can go to Corner Music in Nashville and actually test out the Reasons where i cannot the Mini-Me.

Thoughts are well appreciated,
Woody
 

clintb

Member
Messages
1,037
I have the Bambino Grande combo.

I bought it because it has a nice thick meaty distortion at lower volume levels.

The clean tones are decent. But I like the cleans from my Fender Twin Reverb and Gibson GA-15RV better, they just sparkle more.

Sounds good with distortion pedals.

Complaints?

Compared to my other amps, it doesn't have a lot of clean headroom. I took it to an open jam once and was surprised to find out I couldn't get a pristine clean tone at those volumes.

I've always found it difficult to use it as a channel switching amp that goes from clean to high gain distortion without big jumps in volume.

I didn't like the Eminence Private Jack speaker that came with it. I thought it made the high end sound too fuzzy. Perhaps it wasn't broken-in enough. But I bought it used so I don't know. I replaced it with a WGS Blackhawk HP speaker which I like way better.
 

djw

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,781
I had an opportunity to try out a Grande combo. It's a great amp in many ways, but ultimately I thought it had one major failing: no extension speaker out. I thought the combo cab sounded too boxy, but I could have lived with that had it had the capability to become a 2x12. For that reason I'd consider getting it as a head because the amp really seemed to kick ass just on its own -- it just sounded smaller in the combo than it should have. Great amp otherwise.

Edit: more thoughts. The combo is nice and lightweight. No problem there. I actually have had second thoughts about not picking it up when I had the opportunity. But I agree with tbe previous post about using it as a channel switcher, it's tough to line everything up right and as a 3-channel switcher it's not really doable. But that's an awfully tall order for an amp that size, and ulimately I again think it's a GREAT amp as a head/cab driver for the money.
 

Mr.Woody

Member
Messages
1,582
gotcha, and honestly, i've had channel switching amps before and enjoyed them , but now i'm so used to just plugging in and playing that i may or may not actually use the switching capabilities.....i feel like it's cheating lol
i would probably just set it on one channel and leave it there the whole show. I guess i would rather have a single amp that does something REALLY well than one that does several things okay. That being said, everything i've heard from the Reason line does sound really good.

I'm not a huge "pristine cleans" kinda guy, so that's fine with me. I enjoy Marshall cleans over Fender cleans any day.

Also, the thought just occured to me that i can always use either channel depending on what the situation calls for. For the church band thing, the marshall side (low gain of course), for the blues thing, the fender side, and for balls out rock, both mixed. I don't see myself switching between the channels live.

Thanks for the relpies. One more question, i'm looking for something that can cover the tones in these 2 videos and wondering if the Reasons can do it:

Just the first 40 seconds in this Video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5o3uQxhgMQ&list=UUi9VElc06Pu8tYLSdL7TjMg&index=2&feature=plcp

And all of this video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U41837Qc1n8&list=UUi9VElc06Pu8tYLSdL7TjMg&index=40&feature=plcp
 

clintb

Member
Messages
1,037
If you're not worried about channel switching and pristine cleans at gig volumes, then the Reason Bambino Grande might be a pretty good amp for you.

I believe Reason considers the "Normal" channel as more of a "Marshall" channel and the "Bright" channel as more of a Fender channel. However, I must tell you that there is no preamp distortion in the "Normal" channel. If you turn the Normal volume all the way up and turn the master down, you'll get no distortion.

The "Normal" channel is more midrangey. It gets a bit chimey if you turn the tone to 3:00 or higher. It can sound a little thin, so I use the "pull thick" feature to fill out the sound a bit. That's a pretty good clean tone.

The "Bright" channel has more bass than the "Normal" channel. It's also has a bit of preamp distortion. In "stack" mode, you can use the normal channel volume to boost the preamp distortion to give you a high gain distortion.

I tried duplicating the sounds in the videos you cited. I got close to the Gibson GA-20RVT using the Bright channel alone with the "Pull bright".

I got close to the Reinhardt tone using stack mode with the "Bright" volume around 2:30-3:00 and "Normal" volume around noon.

While experimenting, I remembered something else I don't like about the amp. I don't really like using the master volume on the individual channels. It seems to slightly muffle the tone. The tone definitely sounds better when you disable the master volume by pushing the knob in. It just "opens up" a lot more. However, it might be too loud.

In contrast, the master volume sounds pretty good when using "Stack" mode.
 
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Iceman8.6

Member
Messages
1,186
Bambino owner here and I think its a great amp..I'll put it this way, I've also got a Soldano SLO and 50 watt EVH 5153 which are both great amps and the Bambino sees as much use as those other 2. Its got a factory effects loop and it works great. It seems the Bambinos are hard to find..the only place I can find for sale is at Wilcutt Guitars?
 

Mr.Woody

Member
Messages
1,582
Well, I played the Gibson last night.......DANG......every time I play it, I know I can't sell it. Couldn't be happier with the tone. In fact, when I go to the Reinhardt after playing the Gibson, the Reinhardt sound like it has a blanket over it. It's so bassy sounding compared to the gibson (and the Gibson is not a bright amp at all). If only it wasn't such a pain to carry around, I would use it all the time.....maybe I should sell the Reinhardt and get something higher gain like I originally wanted....
 

clintb

Member
Messages
1,037
Well, I played the Gibson last night.......DANG......every time I play it, I know I can't sell it. Couldn't be happier with the tone.
Oh, I just realized the videos you listed in your earlier post are videos of you and your amps.

I thought the Gibson GA-20RVT sounded pretty good. I watched some other videos of that amp and I was impressed. I was going to suggest that you should buy one of those, but now I see you already own one.

I have a feeling the Bambino and Bambino Grande have more gain.
 

Mr.Woody

Member
Messages
1,582
Well, I'm going for more gain. I also think the Bambino would suit my needs better than the grande. If I need more volume, I have louder amps or mics/monitors. Now its between the bambino and mini-me.....guess I'm leaning towards to bambino because of combo availability and footswitch option. Still really really want a mini-me, but that's ok. I can prob get better sounds at lower volumes with the bambino and it still be more versatile. I'm still going to sulk about it though ;) I guess Obeid plays a strat and designed it around that sound, so it should better suit my needs. Feedback?

also, there is a bambino head in the emporium right now for $500...... Dang
 

cue311

Member
Messages
1,055
I have a regular Bambino head, and I like it. I play at home, and it can get pretty loud, but I can get good sounds at most usable (for my application) volumes. I use the bright channel with the bright knob engaged and with tone down a bit to tame the highs, and I set the normal channel to beef that general sound up in stackmode, plus add a small amount of volume and a touch of grit. I am not using real high gain, though the amp can go there.

I greatly prefer the clean and overdriven sounds of the bright channel by itself, and to me the normal channel works better mixed into the bright channel in different ways. The normal channel, to me, is a little dull sounding and I have more trouble dialing in a tone I like.
 

Category 5

Member
Messages
776
All I can say is that Anthony is great to work with, and he stands behind his product. I'd go for the Grande. I've played one, and it is great with a strat, no doubt.

DonR
 

Mr.Woody

Member
Messages
1,582
Well, I'm still debating between the Reasons. Playing at church tonight, I think I could have used the bambino in 8 watt and been fine. I find myself wanting the line out feature, but knowing I probably won't use it. Anywhere I play, I need the guitar/amp interaction that you only get from volume. I don't think I could go truly digital unless i had a way to have volume interaction, which would, for me, defeat the very purpose of going digital. Also, I've NEVER played a show where they didn't mic the amps......ever. I don't see me starting now.

The thing that is drawing me to the grande is having the "Global master" to turn down but still have power amp overdrive. It's like running an attenuator, at least from my understanding ( feel free to correct me). Just turn down the global for power tube overdrive, or put it in stack mode and adjust for pre-amp overdrive.

I don't need an effects loop (or at least I've never used one), but I like the though of having reverb.
Anyways, it all sums up to......I just can't decide between lower volumes or having the 6V6s I'm so utterly fond of........
 

clintb

Member
Messages
1,037
Well, I'm still debating between the Reasons. Playing at church tonight, I think I could have used the bambino in 8 watt and been fine.
If you don't care about clean headroom, then I think the regular Bambino would be just fine.

I find myself wanting the line out feature, but knowing I probably won't use it. Anywhere I play, I need the guitar/amp interaction that you only get from volume. I don't think I could go truly digital unless i had a way to have volume interaction, which would, for me, defeat the very purpose of going digital. Also, I've NEVER played a show where they didn't mic the amps......ever. I don't see me starting now.
If you ever did want to do a "line out", I'm sure you can buy some third party product to do that. Some kind of direct box that plugs into a speaker output?

The thing that is drawing me to the grande is having the "Global master" to turn down but still have power amp overdrive. It's like running an attenuator, at least from my understanding ( feel free to correct me). Just turn down the global for power tube overdrive, or put it in stack mode and adjust for pre-amp overdrive.
It is NOT a "Global" master. It's still just a regular old master volume which is simply a volume control between the preamp and poweramp which allows you to produce preamp distortion tones at lower volume levels.

Let me explain how the master volume on the Bambino Grande differs from the master volume on the regular Bambino.

The regular Bambino doesn't have a master volume for the normal channel or the bright channel. The Master Volume is only available when you run the two channels together in "stack" mode.

In contrast, the master volume on the Bambino Grande is a push/pull pot which gives you the option of using a master volume with the Normal channel or Bright channel.

In stack mode, the master volume is always in the signal chain(just like on the regular Bambino).

However, if you are using either the Normal Channel or the Bright Channel, you can insert or remove the master volume from the signal chain by pulling out the master volume knob or pushing it in respectively.

Using the master volume on the Normal channel is kind of pointless since that channel doesn't produce any preamp distortion on its own anyways.

It's useful for getting Bright channel preamp distortion at lower volumes. But like I complained about earlier, it kind of darkens the tone.

I don't need an effects loop (or at least I've never used one), but I like the though of having reverb.
The purpose of effects loops is to allow you to add effects like delay and chorus AFTER preamp distortion since it usually sounds better than putting them before the amp. Personally, if I'm using preamp distortion, then I think an effects loop is a "must have".

If you want reverb, then you'll have to choose the Bambino Grande.

Anyways, it all sums up to......I just can't decide between lower volumes or having the 6V6s I'm so utterly fond of........
I'd suggest getting the Bambino Grande.
It has the 6V6s you want, reverb, master volume option for the individual channels, and an effects loop.

Personally I wouldn't worry about the volume issue. You can get distortion tones at volumes that are loud enough for a gig with either amp. However, if you ever need cleaner tones at gig volumes, then you should probably get the higher powered Bambino Grande.
 

jay42

Member
Messages
7,083
I don't know how the Bambino compares to the Grande version. My Bambino is my best strat amp, but it isn't loud enough for my usual Saturday jams. My 18W wasn't either. hth

[edit] I need loud cleans too, so I'm using a Rake.
 
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clintb

Member
Messages
1,037
I don't know how the Bambino compares to the Grande version. My Bambino is my best strat amp, but it isn't loud enough for my usual Saturday jams. My 18W wasn't either. hth
Hmmm. I wonder how loud you guys play at your jams. I've been gigging for years with my Gibson GA-15RV and that's only 15 watts and I've never even turned it up halfway at gigs.

I took my Bambino Grande to a jam one time. It was loud enough, but it wasn't clean, it was always slightly dirty. However at band practice it was clean even in the 10-watt mode. I usually play the same volume at gigs and band practice, so I figured it would've been clean at the gig. However, I was out of that band before we gigged, so who knows.

TGP member Ekluksdahl has gigged with both the Bambino and Bambino Grande, so he would be good person to ask about this stuff.
 

Mr.Woody

Member
Messages
1,582
bump. getting closer to buying a Bambino....i still want a mini me, but i know the Bambino is what i need.....
 

ggwwbb

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,734
I love my Bambino. It hangs with a drummer easily, as long as you're not worried about squeaky cleans. I wish it had the same master volume set up as the Grande, but thats an extremely minor issue for me. My Bambino isn't going anywhere.....its a keeper.
 

Mr.Woody

Member
Messages
1,582
How does the tone compare at bedroom levels between the bambino and Grande? I would assume the Grande would sound thinner since it is being turned down a larger percent
 

Mr.Woody

Member
Messages
1,582
Also, the reason I called the master on the Grande a "Global master" is because that's what Anthony @ Reason called it in our emails back and forth. I asked him a few clarifying questions to the tune of " so if I want power amp distortion, crank up either channel, if I want power amp distortion at lower volumes, pull out the "global" and turn it down. If I want pre-amp distortion, put it In stack mode and adjust accordingly" and his response was "exactly". But there could have been some miscommunication at some point.
 






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